Mail letters to Letters, Santa Fe Reporter, PO Box 2306, Santa Fe, NM 87504, deliver them to 132 E. Marcy St., fax them to 988-5348 or e-mail them to the editor.
This holiday season at Esperanza Shelter for Battered Families, Inc. has been busy. There were more families seeking our services than usual this time of year. This Christmas, all 42 beds were filled. Unfortunately, they were not there because visions of sugar plums danced through their heads. However, we were overwhelmed by the generosity of the people of Santa Fe, much of it through the efforts of the Reporter. Despite the tight economic times, Santa Feans have provided even more gifts for our clients than past holiday seasons. These gifts made the holidays more hopeful for those gathered among strangers in the shelter and assured them that they were entitled to peace and kindness. Thank you, Santa Fe, for that message at this time of year. May these blessings continue throughout the New Year.
Esperanza Shelter for Battered Families, Inc.
All them glitters
I’m really getting tired of Jack Loeffler (and a lot of other so-called “environmentalists”) canonizing Edward Abbey. Abbey, a gifted writer, was full of contradictions. Sadly, among other things, he was an outspoken racist as several of his published statements graphically demonstrate. In a Dec. 17, 1981 letter to The New York Review of Books, Abbey said: “The American public is aware of this truth even if our ‘leaders’ prefer to attempt to ignore it. We know what they will not acknowledge, that the tendency of mass immigration from Mexico is to degrade and cheapen American life downward to the Hispanic standard. Anyone who has made a recent visit to Mexico, or even Miami, Florida knows what I mean.” He’s also on record saying, “I certainly do not wish to live in a society dominated by blacks or Mexicans, or Orientals. Look at Africa, Mexico and Asia.” More importantly, Abbey’s overt racism evidences an undercurrent of racism that pervades the environmental movement as Jake Kosek’s book Understories: The Political Life of Forests in Northern New Mexico brilliantly details.
I don’t doubt that Abbey was a loyal friend and boon companion to Loeffler, but if he’s going to paint a portrait of him, it should be “warts and all.”
While Frost/Nixon is certainly dramatic and well-acted, it tends to make the 37th president look like an affable eccentric, whose insatiable greed, say, comes across as a quirk or foible rather than a serious character defect. Included is a completely fabricated maudlin phone call from Nixon to Frost that helps to create a more sympathetic portrait of the protagonist.
Absent from the film is the malevolent and vengeful Nixon who, when ordering air attacks on North Vietnam, wanted “to bomb the bastards off the earth.” Missing is the ruthless politician who went to inordinate lengths throughout his public career to viciously smear opponents such as Jerry Voorhis, Helen Gahagan Douglas and George McGovern, and who, in 1971, considered hiring teamsters to assault anti-war demonstrators in Washington “and knock their heads off.” Omitted is the cold, detached former chief executive who when dismissing HR Haldeman during Watergate, shook his hand for the first time ever, despite the latter’s 13 years of faithful service, and who knew nothing about Haldeman’s personal life because he had never bothered to ask. One could go on. In short: a sanitized Nixon, whom everyone could learn to love.
James W Hamilton, MD
Bag of Coal
I congratulate the Santa Fe Reporter for its recent review of the status of the Desert Rock power plant. It clearly showed what many in NM have long known, that this plant should never be built. I think it is a mistake to justify the Desert Rock project as a test for retrofitting some future carbon-capture and sequestration technology on existing coal plants.
Why would anyone want to spend $4 billion to construct a new plant, so a possible new technology could be tested on it, when there already exist two huge coal-burning plants in the vicinity, where such a technology could be tested without that cost?
Desert Rock should only be justified on its merits as a new coal-burning power plant, where it fails, in part, because of the certainty that expected greenhouse gas regulations will make it uneconomic.
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