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It’s called freedom

April 6, 2013

I’m glad we are able to disagree with one another in our letters. I’m glad we can live the kind of life we choose and consume foods and drinks that may not be good for our health....

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(35)

Ritty77

Apr-06-13 4:49 AM

"If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on earth." —Ronald Reagan

Good letter, Phil.

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sideliner

Apr-06-13 6:01 AM

I'm getting the gut feeling that just under the surface Phil has something very specific in mind here and this letter is a setup for discussion around specific rights and "the trend to take it away" in a very specific area. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Love the generation of a good discussion and debate. Again, just a feeling...

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CHayes

Apr-06-13 6:23 AM

There's a trend to keep you from consuming the foods you want, and associating with who you want? I wasn't aware of that Phil.

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gavinf56

Apr-06-13 7:45 AM

Another good letter Phil.

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DavidBross

Apr-06-13 7:50 AM

"I'm glad we can do all sorts of dumb things as long as we don't harm others in the process." The fly in the ointment for me is that word "harm". If I chose to live an unhealthy lifestyle, I do have an impact on others. Does that impact rise to the level of "harm"? I'd say, sometimes yes and sometimes no. I'm not sure how many choices/actions we make or take than don't have an impact on others. On the other hand, protecting people from harm can be a good way to disguise efforts to exert control over those same people.

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CMReeder

Apr-06-13 8:24 AM

Another bonehead letter.

What freedoms have been taken away?

Are you being stopped from getting food? Are you being stopped from loving someone? Are you preventing harm or causing more harm?

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 8:44 AM

How about the freedom to spend your money as you wish?

We have a tax code of tens of thousands of pages that give deductions for certain actions with your money.

We have lost the freedom to use cheap, domestic coal as a source of energy.

We have lost the freedom to purchase a toilet with a tank size of our choosing.

We have lost the freedom to purchase a car without electronic stability control and a center, high=mounted stop lamp.

We have lost the freedom to use 100 watt incandescent light bulbs.

We have lost the freedom to buy a health insurance policy covering what the individual wants covered.

We have lost the freedom to sell and buy raw milk.

We have lost the freedom of unencumbered travel with DUI checkpoints or random pat-downs.

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ToTEXASfromPA

Apr-06-13 8:47 AM

"If I chose to live an unhealthy lifestyle, I do have an impact on others. Does that impact rise to the level of "harm"? I'd say, sometimes yes and sometimes no. I'm not sure how many choices/actions we make or take than don't have an impact on others. On the other hand, protecting people from harm can be a good way to disguise efforts to exert control over those same people."

++

Great comments. Good job DavidBross.

But what is the deciding factor(s) of whether it is "good" or "bad" control? Whether the issue is legalized marijuana, abortion, gay marriage, health care, evangelizing, gun control, texting while driving, etc.

Many times it is an issue of personal gain of some sort (buying votes, increased wealth, or being in power) vs. a genuine welfare, regard, and care for others and the best for them. Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish whether it is a motivation for the person's self-interest or others.

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enigma

Apr-06-13 10:00 AM

CHayes,"There's a trend to keep you from consuming the foods you want, and associating with who you want? I wasn't aware of that Phil."

That would explain a lot. If you would pay attention rather than blindly following your party, you would be aware of these things.

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enigma

Apr-06-13 10:04 AM

David, The choice to live an unhealthy lifestyle only affects others because the government is already interfering in our lives and forcing us to pay for other's mistakes. They use the loss of freedom that they have already inflicted on us to justify the loss of freedom they want to inflict next. The sad part is that many people fall for it.

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Bufftrev1

Apr-06-13 10:06 AM

Wow.. thanks, Erik, for the laughs.. what a ridiculous post. Your post would seem to prove one thing, you haven't lost any freedoms whatsoever, despite enigmas repeated assertions. You are free to spend your money as you wish, head to wegmans or kohls and buy anything you can afford. Sane for toilets, head to Lowes or Barr's hardware and buy any one you like. I've lived in PA, CO and DC, and I've experienced one random DUI checkpoint and zero random pat downs.. meaning I move around 'unencumbered'. Stop by Jokers Coal in Morris or Todd Bergusons and buy all the coal you need.. but, again, thanks for the laugh. BTW, still waiting for you to answer the question, why are you incapable of becoming a teacher? My prediction is, if you respond to this post, you'll dodge it yet again. Off to the gym..

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philunderwood

Apr-06-13 10:20 AM

David asked an intelligent question and enigma gave an intelligent answer; both are fine examples of a rational discussion others could learn from.

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Bufftrev1

Apr-06-13 10:28 AM

Good morning Phil.. another interesting letter, to be certain. Also an interesting subsequent post, to respond, I've been posting on this site for about a year and it would be fair to say that my usual inestimable patience does have it's limits. But I do continue to enjoy adult conversation with a preponderance on folks on here, despite our differences of opinions. However, to summarize, point well noted.. hope you enjoy this beautiful day to the fullest, I'm listening to a little Best of Moby..

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 10:31 AM

Buff:

I am a sales professional. I love business to business sales and have dedicated my life to being the conduit between my company's products and the customer's needs.

I pride myself on being absolutely ethical and honest with my management and my customers.

That has earned me great respect.

Meanwhile, I watched my wife teach for 16 years and the absolutely idiot system we have in education.

On the school-side, it is cronyism and immature cliques, from the board down to the teacher's lounge.

On the parents' side, it is the 60% divorce rate and parents using their children against each other. A large percentage of the children get zero attention or support at home, so they return to class after an assignment with nothing because too many parents neglect their children's education.

I cannot be a teacher in a system that has no regard for excellence (on the school side) and no regard for decency (on the parents' side).

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 10:34 AM

Buff:

Just as I could not work for a company that deals in a corrupt way, I could not work in a system that ignores excellent teachers, excellent students and, instead, caters to the worst among us.

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 10:37 AM

Buff:

Back on topic.

You may think it is ridiculous, but these are great examples where one person thinks they know what is best for everyone else and imposes their will on everyone.

You cannot go to Lowe's and buy a toilet with any size tank you wish. The federal gov't put a limit on it.

You may see that as ridiculous, but I see it as a perfect example of how we tolerate small infractions on our freedom in return for nothing of substance.

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Bufftrev1

Apr-06-13 10:45 AM

Hi Erik.. now, was that really so difficult? You used the word 'incapable' which lead me to believe that you suffered some sort if affliction or handicap.. or that you had some sort of felony conviction in your past. You might have chosen your words differently to more accurately describe your position. Much like you might more accurately ascribe the blame in some of your posts to the responsible party or even to both parties, as is often the case. While I am a staunch liberal, I have, when accurate, laid blame for a policy or position on the Democrats. Honesty in business is great but being honest with ones self is equally important. Enjoy your day, Erik.. I'm afraid I suffered a slight shoulder separation during ju jitsu last week and my abilities at the gym are limited.. let me know if you need some coal, I know Todd Berguson personally..

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Bufftrev1

Apr-06-13 10:49 AM

Hi Erik.. back on topic as well, I guess we disagree. I see energy efficient water tanks on toilets as a good thing. There is a finite amount of potable water in the world and we're using this scarce and irreplaceable resource at an alarming rate.. there is no 'plan B' when it comes to our planet.

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Snov001

Apr-06-13 11:28 AM

Just started reading responses to Letters to the Editor a few weeks ago and I have to say, I really enjoy the comments from both sides. Phil's letter nailed it. Being able to agree do disagree is a great freedom. I have noticed, in most cases, even though you may not agree with a post, there is still level of respect maintained for each other's view. I sincerely wish our electorate could do the same. ERIK.. It appears to me you have a good view of what is wrong with the education system and, with your business experience you also know how to get things done. The only way to fix a broken system is to get involved.. and work toward repairing it. Thank you all for your contributions to Letters to the editor.

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 11:54 AM

Buff:

You may see energy efficient tanks on toilets as a good thing, I KNOW they are a waste as it forces many to people to flush two or three times, thereby consuming more water.

Once again, you agree with a top-down, authoritarian policy that is one-size-fits-all rather than allowing innovation and creativity to solve the problem.

PS: I disagree on your belief that potable water is finite. Again, your OPINION should not constitute a restriction on me.

Restrict yourself and leave everyone else alone.

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 11:55 AM

Snov001:

Welcome to the discussion!

You will find it to be entertaining at times, but also frustrating at times.

Always take a breath before hitting the "Post Comment" button.

We have all made the mistake of not thinking before posting in the past.

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Bufftrev1

Apr-06-13 12:47 PM

Hi Erik.. you may have made the mistake of posting without thinking just now. Again, I have to disagree.. I just last year finished remodeling my home. I own two new model, efficient toilets and have never once had to flush twice. Nor have I had to flush twice at my parents, nor my friends.. innovation and creativity HAVE solved the problem, in this case. And, where is exactly is this limitless supply of cost efficient drinking water you claim exists? Scarcely 3% of earth's water is fresh water, most of it locked in ice sheets that are rapidly melting due to global warming. See today's news story from Peru before you disagree. And, lastly, I will restrict myself and leave everyone alone the moment you do the same..

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philunderwood

Apr-06-13 1:15 PM

I don’t go anywhere in a car without wearing a seat belt, but I don’t need the force of government to cause me to make that a practice. Businesses must monitor their financial transactions and deal with one another and their customers honestly and ethically if they’re going to be successful; they don’t need countless regulations backed by the force of government to add to the confusion and cost of doing business.

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philunderwood

Apr-06-13 1:26 PM

David touched upon a very good point when he questioned my use of the word “harm.” With our present government involvement into our health care system, one person’s unhealthy lifestyle choices DOES have an effect on the rest of us who are paying the bills, so it does constitute “harm.” No doubt this will be used as a door opener for all sorts of restrictions in how we choose to live.

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eriklatranyi

Apr-06-13 2:23 PM

Buff:

There is not a finite amount of fresh water with every drop used reducing that total.

Fresh water is constantly being generated and regenerated by the environment.

The far bigger problem comes from self-appointed regulators who think one solution fits a nation of 300 million.

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