Letters to the Editor

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2001

Legislation to help big airlines likely to hurt Alaska aviation

The rich get richer; the working man goes broke. U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens' office under the steerage of Justin Stifel is trying to ram through a piece of legislation that will adversely affect jobs and services throughout the state.

According to Justin, the text will be out any day now; and although they had months to prepare it, they will generously give us a week or so to respond.

In effect this bill will give "Part 121" airlines (the big boys) the right to take 70 percent of the mail hauled in any given market, leaving "Part 135" of the airlines (air taxis), the backbone of Alaska aviation, to split the remaining 30 percent between them.

These air taxis, in good faith, have made financial and community commitments based on the current equal apportionment set up for mail distribution.

Their excuse is to force air taxis who only carry the mail into offering passenger service and eventually force them to "Part 121" standards. Part 121 is so bureaucratically absurd that no small Mom-and-Pop air taxi will financially survive the change-over. This whole move is a rob-Peter-to pay-Paul, knee-jerk reaction to the big airlines crying the blues after the Sept. 11 tragedy.

I'm sick and tired of politicians using the death of these people to further their personal goals. If the big boys are struggling, perhaps they should lose some of their overly top heavy salary expenses.

Small air taxis already are so efficient that their only choice when poor management allows them to overreach their ability is to close down. In the business world, this is a fact of life. The government should stop using legislation to bail out companies that are out of control.

One wonders why the Air Carriers Association, the self-appointed watchdog of aviation in this state, has not spoken up, until you realize that members' dues are set up around an airline's gross income. It becomes obvious that we can expect no help from them as long as their bottom line is tied so closely to the size and wealth of its members.

Between ridiculous insurance rates and politicians, this state faces losing a significant piece of its history and flavor not to mention livelihoods.

Scott Cunningham, Homer

Some things only God understands; even now, God remains in control

This letter is in response to the ads that were in the Clarion on page 3 last Friday and Sunday.

I think your name may be Ruthie Bedwell. Ruthie, I tried to look you up in the phone book but could not find a listing for you.

I hope that you will contact me as I've got a video series on the Revelations I'd like to share with you. The book of Revelations is one of my favorite subjects -- I've been studying it for about 20 years, although the more I read and study, the more I realize I don't know. Some things only God fully understands.

John received the visions of the Revelations while on the Island of Patmos thousands of years ago. Even he did not fully understand all that he saw and heard. Revelations means exactly that -- "to reveal."

Yes, we are indeed in Revelations now, and these are very interesting times to be alive, but Ruthie, I think I detect some fear in your writings, and it seems when fear is involved confusion and misunderstanding can get in (I understand -- unfortunately, I've been there myself). The main thing we need to realize right now is God is in control, (Revelations 19:6). He knows everything. It is not our job to point out people, clergy or businesses that may be involved in "Evil" or "666" as your letter states. The only time that would be necessary is if you were to bring it before other Christians for prayer purposes. Most of the time, though, it is wise to just keep it in your heart and let God take care of it. God knows everything -- from him nothing can be hidden. God will give you the peace you need. He wants only what is best for you (Jeremiah 29:11).

Ruthie, you are in my prayers, and I'm sure the prayers of many others. I look forward to talking with you and studying Revelations --God's blueprint of the future -- with you.

I pray that God will clear the way and take away any confusion.

God be with you -- and with all of us. This is no time for fear; He holds us in the palm of his hand. (Joshua 1:9; Psalm 91:11; Revelations 22)

Sheryl Main, Kenai

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