Thursday, November 25, 2004
Democrat Loser for Reagan
I want to make it clear from the start that I am a registered Democrat. Eric Johnson’s post-mortem of Election 2004 “Our Blue Heaven” (Nov. 11-17) pretty much summed up my own feelings on the state of the union in the wee hours of Nov. 3. He’s right to say that we Democrats cannot succumb to defeatism. But as I reflect on the 2004 election in the weeks since, I couldn’t disagree more when he says that the system is broken. Harnessing the grief and despair of Nov. 2 to bring some type of new angry Democratic Party into Washington is a recipe for disaster. The system is not broken—but the operators may be.
I am just as disappointed in the outcome as anyone. I think that we Democrats need to do some real soul-searching if we are going to have a hope in 2008. We complain that the nation is as divided as ever, yet we embrace the Radical Left as represented by Howard Dean’s failed campaign. It may be blasphemous to utter the name under present conditions, but instead of looking to Dean’s ilk, we may need to look toward the centrism of Ronald Reagan.
We decry the excesses of the Conservative Right—the bible-beating anti-abortionists, the gun-toting war supporters, and the power-hungry empire-builders. But what of our Radical Left—the as-long-as-she’s-18 pornographers, the no-abortion-is-too-late pro-choicers, and the love-and-pot-can-save-us peaceniks? You may believe your vote was a vote against Bush, but the other side believes its vote was against the Radical Left agenda.
It’s time to realize that we may have taken our agenda a little too far to the left. Obviously, it’s out of step with the way 52 percent of Americans feel right now. As I looked at the Red/Blue map in Johnson’s piece broken out county-by-county, I found it much easier to imagine shades of purple rather than red and blue. We can compromise in the middle on health care, welfare, and civil rights—these are political issues. Where we cannot compromise is on beliefs. Democrats, don’t get angry. Think purple.
JJ Larson | Monterey
Some Farmed Fish Are Good
In the Nov. 11 issue, a food article makes a small statement that this featured restaurant never serves farm-raised fish [“Aloha Spirit in Monterey”]. This statement may generalize for the consumer that all farm-raised fish should be avoided. On the contrary, there are some wonderful farm-raised species and the Monterey Bay Aquarium recognizes them by listing them as such on their “Seafood Watch” card.
Tilapia is farm raised in fresh water ponds and fed only plant matter. The water that is drained and filtered daily is used to irrigate surrounding farm land. Wild Striped Bass from the East Coast is reported to have very high mercury levels compared to its cousin the farmed Striped Bass, which is raised in very much the same way as Tilapia. There is also Sturgeon and Trout.
Consumers should ask if retailers have looked at the farm they are purchasing from. The world of aquaculture is very large, and not perfect, but there are some wonderful products raised responsibly. Purchasing these products takes pressure off our wild species which are being hunted to extinction and encourages the aquaculture industry to farm responsibly. So please, say yes to responsible farming, and avoid irresponsible farming such as farm-raised Salmon, marketed as Atlantic Salmon.
Cindy Walter | Passionfish | Pacific Grove