Friesen dedicated to serving Saratoga

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Pat is always out in the community volunteering her time and listening to people’s concerns. So pet-sitting for Bella, her adopted dog, and Amelie, her adopted cat, became part of my routine.I was very impressed when I learned that Pat spearheaded the grassroots effort to bring Northshire Bookstore to Saratoga, which is one of the many examples of her ability to get things done with the desired results.Pat’s passion and leadership motivates all of the people working with her. I am proud to be a member of her campaign team.I hope you will consider voting for Pat For Saratoga County supervisor on Nov. 7.Mel LazarSaratoga SpringsMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen? I am pleased to write this letter in support of Pat Friesen, who is running for the office of Saratoga County supervisor.I moved to Saratoga Springs from Manhattan at the beginning off June 2016 where I resided for 28 years. I was a member of the law faculty at NYU for 30 years, where I taught a number of law courses. I am still actively engaged in the practice of international trade law.Pat and I were neighbors at the Grove on Lake Avenue and became good friends. We found we had some common interests, including politics, current world issues, and the Arts.I immediately realized that Pat loves Saratoga Springs and all it offers. I was particularly impressed with her commitment to making life here better for all residents, particularly the disadvantaged — the latter through her work with Code Blue and the Backstretch Employee Service Team (BEST).last_img read more

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Trump must do more to help Puerto Rico

first_imgWhen “visiting” you threw paper towels to people, cut your visit short and didn’t fly over the island to survey damage.As the sister of a first responder working 18-hour shifts, I know islanders are working together sharing necessities, clearing debris with hammers, saws and their hands. Others are stranded in towns where roads and 41 bridges are washed out.Carcasses of animals on roofs need to be removed after rushing waters took them to their deaths. Despite obstacles, people carry each other on backs and do all they can to survive. We’re a culture where we say: “Mi Casa es tu Casa” [My Home is your Home]. That is who we are, and calling us ingrates demonstrates a lack of awareness and empathy of our culture. Open your heart, cease degrading tweets, and rise up to the dignity of the office you represent.No wall can be built across the Atlantic, so many Hispanic Americans will relocate and vote here in elections. So, remember, “We will not forget (no olivdaremos).Maria Mercedes KarrScotiaMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Schenectady teens accused of Scotia auto theft, chase; Ended in Clifton Park crash, Saratoga Sheriff…EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motorists Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion On Sept. 30, amidst massive suffering in Puerto Rico, and on the 67th day at your golf club, you posted 18 tweets, many of them unkind and directed at San Juan’s mayor and its residents. This was a result of her pleas for faster intervention.While she was waist-high in water checking homes, you chose at that moment, to tweet, “Puerto Rican workers want everything done for them when it should be a community effort.”last_img read more

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Stop youths from using e-cigarettes

first_imgI currently work for the Alcohol and Substance Abuse Prevention Council of Saratoga County partnering with the Glens Falls Hospital Living Tobacco Free Initiative. I’m writing to express my concern about the current increase in youth e-cigarette use and to raise awareness on the upcoming Tobacco Holiday Great American Smokeout on Nov. 16.E-cigarette use in the United States has been steadily rising, with an increase of almost 10 percent from 2011 to 2016.In fact, nearly 2 million middle- and high-school-aged students used e-cigarettes in 2016. They were more commonly used in youth than adults.Some common terms for e-cigarettes or e-cigarette usage are: vape, vaping, juice (referring to vape juice), PV (personalized vaporizer) and cig-alike (e-cigarette that looks like a traditional cigarette). Almost all e-cigarette products contain nicotine, along with other dangerous chemicals such as aerosol and metals such as nickel, tin and lead. Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion E-cigarettes haven’t been proven by the U.S. Food Drug Administration to be a safe alternative to quitting smoking, and studies are showing that evidence is insufficient to show e-cigarettes are a successful cessation tool.The Great American Smokeout is celebrated nationally. The Smokeout challenges people to stop using tobacco and gives tools to help smokers quit.If anyone is interested in participating and wants more information, visit www.cancer.org/healthy/stay-away-from-tobacco/great-american-smokeout.html.Anyone interested in quitting smoking can call the NYS Quit-line number at 1-866-NY-QUITS.Kristin CanjuraSaratoga SpringsMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censuslast_img read more

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How’s that big tax cut working out for you, America?

first_imgBut what about the economics?You might be tempted to say that it’s too early to tell.After all, the law has been in effect for only a few months, and we got our first look at post-tax-cut economic growth only last week.But here’s the thing: To deliver on its backers’ promises, the tax cut would have to produce a huge surge in business investment — not in the long run, not five or 10 years from now, but more or less right away.And there’s no sign that anything like that is happening.Let’s talk about the economics here.Anything that increases the budget deficit should, other things being the same, lead to higher overall spending and a short-run bump in the economy (although there’s no indication of such a bump in the first-quarter numbers, which were underwhelming). But if you want to boost overall spending, you don’t have to give huge tax breaks to corporations.You could do lots of other things instead — say, spend money on fixing America’s crumbling infrastructure, an issue on which Trump keeps promising a plan but never delivers.Furthermore, any short-term boost will probably be quickly squelched by the Federal Reserve, which believes that we’re at full employment and which is gradually raising interest rates to keep the economy from overheating.You can argue that the Fed is wrong, but the case for easier monetary policy has nothing to do with the Trump tax cut.No, the case for a corporate tax cut is the claim that in the long run it will raise wages. How is that supposed to work?It never made sense to believe that corporations would immediately share their tax-cut bounty with workers, and they haven’t.Any news organizations that let themselves be bamboozled by cherry-picked stories of firms announcing worker bonuses after the tax bill passed should be ashamed of their credulity. Categories: Editorial, OpinionSo far, Donald Trump and his allies in Congress have achieved one and only one major legislative victory: passing a large tax cut, mainly aimed at corporations and business owners.The tax cut’s proponents promised that it would lead to a dramatic acceleration of economic growth and produce big gains in wages; they hoped that it would also yield big political dividends for the midterm elections.So how’s it going?Politically, the tax cut is a damp squib: Most voters say they haven’t seen any boost to their paychecks, and Republicans are barely talking about the law in their political campaigns. The real logic behind corporate tax cuts is that they’re supposed to lead to higher investment.This investment, in turn, would gradually increase the stock of capital, simultaneously driving down the pretax rate of return on investment and pushing up wages.There are two questions about this supposed process.One is how much wages will rise in the long run.Most independent estimates predict only modest gains; the Trump administration’s wildly optimistic predictions aren’t just out of the ballpark, they’re in another universe.Still, to be fair, that’s not a question on which the data have had time to speak.But the other, equally important question is, how long is the long run?center_img As Greg Leiserson of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth points out, “every month in which wage rates are not sharply higher than they would have been absent the legislation, and investment returns are not sharply lower, is a month in which the benefits of those corporate tax cuts accrue primarily to shareholders.”A tax cut that might significantly raise wages during, say, Cynthia Nixon’s second term in the White House, but yields big windfalls for stock owners with only trivial wage gains for the next five or 10 years, is not what we were promised.To get major wage gains before, for example, the 2024 election — never mind 2020 — we’d need to have a huge near-term boom in business investment, mainly financed by inflows of capital from overseas. I mean really, really huge.And there’s no sign that this is happening.True, business investment as a share of GDP is up slightly over the past year, but it’s still well below its level before the financial crisis — let alone the heights it reached in the 1990s.Is it just too soon to expect results?Are businesses getting ready to ramp up investment, so that we’ll see them laying out the big bucks in the near future? Not according to a survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.A vast majority of businesses say either that the tax law has had no effect on their investment plans or that they are planning only a modest increase.In short, the effects of the Trump tax cut are already looking like the effects of the Brownback tax cut in Kansas, the Bush tax cut and every other much-hyped tax cut of the past three decades: big talk, big promises, but no results aside from a swollen budget deficit.You might think that the GOP would eventually learn something from this experience, realize that tax cuts aren’t magical, and come up with some different ideas.But I guess it’s difficult for a man to understand something when his campaign contributions depend on his not understanding it.Paul Krugman is a Nobel Prize-winning economist and a columnist with The New York Times.More from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censuslast_img read more

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Letters to the Editor for Sunday, Jan. 13

first_imgDon’t trust media to give you all the factsWhile catching up on my reading over the holidays, I came across a perfect example of how some media lie with facts.In a ProPublica editorial claiming congressional Republicans are hobbling the IRS to the benefit of the rich, it stated that last year the IRS had 9,510 auditors. That’s a reduction of 33 percent from 2010 and about the same number as in 1953 when the economy was a seventh of its current size, the editorial said, adding that from 2010 to 2017, the audit rate dropped by 42 percent. I have no reason to doubt the facts presented, but one major fact is omitted — that all IRS filings are now computer-audited, highlighting the mostly likely candidates for a human audit. This is technology that was not available in 1953 and not yet well-developed even in 2010. Contrary to the opinion being offered, at 9,510 auditors, the IRS might be appropriately staffed, or even over-staffed. Note the publication and political persuasion are not the point, but rather how these facts are manipulated. There are examples every day in the media of this type of cherry-picking of facts that appear not only in opinion pieces but in news reporting (even in what news is reported) across the political spectrum. The point is: Reader/listener beware, look for alternate sources and, above all, think for yourself.Diane BarneyAlbany Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionTrump to blame for clinging to wall pledgeMake no mistake about it, the current government shutdown is due entirely to Donald Trump’s childish, petulant refusal to consider any legislation to end the shutdown that does not include $5 billion for him to build a wall along the border between Mexico and the United States. Cuomo abortion bill will lower populationSeemingly without thinking, Gov. Andrew Cuomo again vows to expand New York state’s abortion rights (The Daily Gazette, Jan. 8). The proposed legislation will definitely increase the number of pregnancy terminations by removing the few restrictions that now exist. He’s ideologically driven by what he calls “women’s rights,” forgetting that about half the babies terminated are female.Our state is losing population at an alarming rate (The Daily Gazette, Dec. 26). It’s totally inconsistent to advocate for more abortions so as to exacerbate such a loss of people.  In my opinion, the proposed reproductive health act is the height of insanity because it’s impossible to stem the loss of population by killing more of our children. But then, I’m only an engineer, not a politician.Wendell NeugebauerBallston Spa Why is he so stubborn about this? It is a matter of his saving face among his supporters. One of his campaign promises was the totally ridiculous assertion that he would build the wall and make Mexico pay for it. Well, it soon became obvious that that was not going to happen. So he fell back to trying to save face by continuing to promise to build the wall, only to have the U.S. taxpayers pay for it.The trouble with this is that a wall isn’t a good solution to enhance our border security. It’s crude, confrontational to our Mexican neighbor and not cost-effective.Any responsible person knowledgeable about homeland security will tell you that there are many other more effective means of policing our borders — security cameras, drones, etc. Moreover, Trump’s assertion that there’s a crisis in border security is patently not correct, just another Trump lie. His on-TV discussions of the so-called border crisis are filled with misinformation about the immigrant situation.The result of Trump’s self-serving unwillingness to approve any plan to end the government shutdown that does not include building his wall is that he alone has caused thousands of American citizens severe economic hardship all because of his vanity. John VohrNorthville Partial wall makes no sense for securityNow let me see if I understand. I have five acres of land, but I only need a secure fence along the 800 feet on the road, and I can leave the other boundaries open and a fox won’t get my chickens? Right.Calvin Moore ArgyleMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristslast_img read more

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Letters to the Editor for Sunday, July 21

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionGreen Light bill has many positive partsThere have been many concerns expressed about the recent passage of the Green Light bill that will allow undocumented immigrants to apply for a state driver’s license.However, there are actually many reasons to applaud this action.A driver who completes an application, provides IRS tax returns to show proof of residency (undocumented people pay U.S. income taxes – source: Cato Institute), and takes a written and behind-the-wheel exam to be licensed is going to be a better, safer driver.Those driving without a license are five times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident (source: AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety).The licensing of this group will also generate revenue for the DMV and the state. Will having a driver’s license allow an undocumented person to register to vote or become a U.S. citizen? The Boards of Election are required by law to verify the information given on a voter registration form (source: National Council of State Legislatures).The few verified cases of undocumented people registering to vote through their state’s driver’s license application appear to be the fault of those states’ own flawed licensing procedures (source: NPR, 2/19).The undocumented people in our communities pay taxes and can serve in the U.S. military. Granting a driver’s license to them won’t give them extra benefits or make them citizens, but will go a long way to increase, not lessen, everyone’s safety.Ann HatkeSchenectadyThe writer is president of the League of Women Voters of Schenectady County.We must stand up for American valuesWhat’s happening to the patriotism and traditions of our country?Taking a knee during the national anthem. Banning the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance. The Betsy Ross flag is suddenly offensive when displayed on footwear. The left-wing U.S. Women’s Soccer Team offers anti-American protests and a “Platform of Their Own.” The New York Times publishes a July 4th video that says the United States is just OK. Congress takes on partisanship over leadership persona.Isn’t it about time we stand up for American values and foundations?However you cut it, this is the greatest country in the world.Ralph PidgeonGlenvilleDon’t help Trump distract from issuesPresident Trump is playing the public like a fiddle. He knows how to deflect important issues and allegations by tweeting nonsense and getting people all riled up. The more hate he spews, the more headlines he gets, and he loves it.We need to put him and his rhetoric on the back burner and concentrate on the important issues.This country is going in the wrong direction. Let’s ignore Trump. He would really hate that and get on with the business of running a clean, efficient government.Come on politicians, get to work and earn the money we are paying you. Enough is enough.Marty ShantyCharltonMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristslast_img read more

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Miller fights on in bidding war over Cala

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Property strategy is central to surviving slowdown

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People

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Residents challenge Barbican service cost

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