LETTERS: Feb. 13, 2013

By on February 13, 2013

Remember it’s only once in ten years and next time it could be easier. For years cancer prevention experts have wrung their hands over the fact that the preparation for the colonoscopy is far worse than the procedure itself – just as Judd reports. What’s missing from his column entirely are two important facts. First of all and most important is this: colonoscopy saves lives, because colon polyps can be found 10 years before they become malignant. This may be one reason why colon cancer deaths are dropping in many industrial nations. Secondly, there are more gentle bowel preparations for colonoscopy, but since this is such a taboo topic there’s little discussion about that even in the medical community. This involves eating lighter lower-residue foods for two days before the preparation, such as skinless chicken, fish, cooked vegetables or fruit without seeds, no red or purple colored anything, and lots and lots of fluids, including eating lunch the day before. The good news about the procedure is this. Once you have a clear result, you can wait 5-10 years for the next one, according to the U.S. government guidelines. But, you should also have yearly screening for fecal occult blood – a messy but valuable prevention tactic.

– Devra Davis, PhD MPH
Environmental Health Trust, President and Founder

Vertical Harvest options
Amazing what lengths our City Council will go to to provide weekly entertainment. This week was the occasion to gush over the idea that the state of Wyoming should contribute 1.5 million bucks toward building a glass Babylon complete with hanging gardens on the wall of our parking structure.

“An energy audit for the proposed parking lot vertical greenhouse would be too expensive at this time?” After all, Vertical Harvest has only been floating this idea for almost three years and raised nearly a million dollars from people who apparently have a lot of money left over after investing with Bernie Madoff. Earthlings, what was the average temperature in Jackson during the month of January?

When I submit a proposal to investors I’m required not only to provide a budget for energy costs, but to estimate cash flow from production and sales, capital costs, return on capital, plant depreciation, labor and management costs, and threats from market competition. But what do I know?

Why don’t we consider something more practical, like building a solar reflective roof over the ski runs on Snow King, heating it in the winter and refrigerating it in the summer so we can offer perfect 30 degree temperatures and year round skiing just like they do in Dubai?

— Richard Elder

Thanks for Kurtzer
Congratulations on yesterday’s interview of Ambassador Kurtzer! I hope you report this evening’s talk personally. Why does no one mention Congress’s Power of the Purse?
I’d fight to the death for Israel west of the Green Line; but her colonies on the West Bank provoke terrorism against our homeland. Congress pays for those colonies with:
1. direct appropriations (though not earmarked),
2. tax-deductibility for gifts to them, and
3. home-loan guarantees.

— Sincerely, Bob Morris


Don’t diss the harmonica
I enjoyed your piece on the local music scene, but take exception to your remark about harmonica players (“harmonica generally sucks and should be banned unless you are Stevie Wonder”). There have been great others like Paul Butterfield, Charlie Muzzlewait, Toots Thielman and Norton Buffalo, to name a few. But I save my most respect for the guys who have inserted beautiful harmonica fills into great songs by other lead artists, such as Mick Rafael with Willie Nelson, and the greatest of all time, Charlie McCoy, whose harmonica licks have been in countless hit songs by innumerable artists across all genres over decades. I don’t deny that there are many harp players who could learn a lot by listening to BB King, who can make one long note sound better than a dozen notes by other artists. But to diss the instrument out of hand is not fair.

– St. Louis Slim, Alan Henderson

Dear editor
As a 20 year resident of the valley and avid, but not crazy bike rider, I have ridden and driven the Moose-Wilson road many times, and I’m here to tell you, it’s scary, from either perspective.

I understand GTNP has many concerns about a separate pathway, but from what I understand, none of these will be alleviated by not building it. Bikers will still use the road, and the issues of driver/biker and wildlife encounters will still be there.

Having a separate bike path can only create a safer and better experience for the Park visitor, by not only vastly reducing the danger of being hit by a car, but also through educational opportunities. People are much more apt to stop and read signage and appreciate informational kiosks while riding a bike than while driving a car.

With some planning and input from the digitally connected, GTNP or the NPS could even use interactive signage along the path as a model for fundraising. Imagine coming across a sign in a stunningly beautiful area that said, “Help us protect the view you’re looking at now. Text NATURE to #xxxxx to donate $5 to the NPS, GTNP, GTNP Foundation…”
Creating a bike path not only reduces liability for the Park, but leverages the money already spent in the valley and Park for the existing path network, and the new source for tourism dollars that they’re bringing in. With the category of “adventure tourism” growing rapidly, a new pathway could also be leveraged to create visibility for the park, the valley and biking opportunities, speaking to a new segment of consumers who’ve long overlooked Jackson for places like Sun Valley, Austin and Moab for cycling trips, especially in the shoulder seasons. This kind of sustainable adventure tourism is a perfect fit for a community that prides itself on environmental sustainability and providing a great visitor experience.

– Alli Noland

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