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Glenville, West Virginia
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October 21, 2004     The Glenville Democrat
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October 21, 2004
 

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[) ! i i iiii i i : . ), Politics, GOP candidates, and other 'monkey' business For this 2004 General Election on Tues., Nov. 2, the electorate has a choice: most of the offices held by Democrats on, at least, the state level are being contested by Republicans and Third Party challengers. At the same time, the majority of Republi- cans and Third Party candidates are not cam- paigning very vigorously or effectively, thereby failing to present their views to the general public. That's a shame, because some of them may be viable public servants. Although much is known about the Bush- Kerry and Manchin-Warner campaigns and platforms on the national and state levels, respectively, no principles are being advanced about the lesser, yet almost as important other statewide offices. For example, in singling out the State Auditor's race, Glen B. Gainer III is the Democratic incumbent, being challenged by a Lisa Thornburg, of Milton (Cabell County), a Republican. Now, that office has been held by Gainers, I, I1, and III, ever since I can remember. They aren't our Gilmer County Gainers, either. If they were, I could maybe be more enthusiastic about their candidacies. I don't remember even meeting a "State Auditor Gainer" -- grandfather, father or son -- at either a public function or newspaper office anywhere in this state. Do these Gainers believe that they are like royal monarchs, having the Divine Right to hold this particular high office for their life- times? Will they end up being like the Windsor Dynasty of England which has held the mon- archy over there for hundreds of years? If the Gainers accomplish this feat, it could happen only in the Mountain State. So, have we West Virgin;arts allowed incumbents to be re-elected --election-after-election -- with no proof of their governmental ability, efficiency or record? Whoever Lisa Thornburg is. she may de- serve a lot of votes for State Auditor, if she advances a positive platform and proves her- self to be more deserving than this Gainer fellow is. Truly, we shouldn't promote pater- nalism in the State's highest offices; if pos- sible, that should be her main campaign issue. Now, there may be one exception to this rule when looking at the McGraw family from Wyoming County in southern West Virginia. Both Warren (a Supreme Court justice) and Darrell (the attorney general) have clear records of standing with the people, espe- cially with poor and middle class citizens, of the Mountain State. In fact, they've been so effective in representing the people against large corporations through the years that these firms are now spending millions of dollars to unseat Warren from the Supreme Court of Appeals in this election. That's why we edi- tors endorsed Warren McGraw for re-election two weeks ago! He needed a boost in the face 'of the ugliest media onslaught being waged against any candidate in this state -- a cam- The Corcoran Column By David H. Corcoran Publish~'-Editor paign mainly financed from the bottomless pockets of the National Chamber of Com- merce and this state's coal companies. Darrell, however, I've never gotten achance to know, because he left southern West Vir- ginia long before I moved there in the late 1970s. Nevertheless, his record of suing multi- national corporations, like the cigarette com- panies, for damages and for costing state government millions in healthcare expenses for state workers is legendary. West Virginia is a richer place than it would have been because of him and a healthier place to live. I'll also mention that I know his opponent, Hiram "Bucky" Lewis, IV, a Republican and attorney in Morgantown. As a creative and intelligent lawyer in his early 30s, he de- serves an opportunity to serve the public at some point. Yet, the state's G.O.P. isn't giving him the campaign monies that's necessary to beat a well-known incumbent like Darrell McGraw. Bucky grew up with my kids in Welch (McDowell County), but has connections all over the state. His uncle, Bobby Lewis, is Governor Bob Wise's chief community de- veloper in the state's Economic Development Office and was a mayor of Welch. Also, Hiram's grandfather, H.C. "Kit" Lewis, II, was the long-time County Clerk in McDowell County. His late grandfather, H.C., I, whom this publisher also fondly remembers, was a native of Clay County where the family has maintained their homestead for generations. The family's business is Lewis Oil Company -- an oil distributorship throughout all of southern West Virginia which is still in exist- ence. Bucky's/tad, H.C. "Kibble," III, man- ages the family's gas and convenience stores (Kwik Serv) in the state's southern section. I have a great amount of respect for this af- fable, industrious and public-spirited family. Back to Bucky: He, also, has links with Weirton and the Northern Panhandle via his mother's family, and Morgantown because that's were he went to law school and has his legal practice. As you can see, Bucky, who is also a veteran of the current Iraq War, has a good political profile, if the state's Republi- cans would just advertise it. To the contrary, they publicize that foolish Monty Warner in his abortive, lost cause bid for the governor- ship. ..... In the main, hone of our local Democratic candidates are being seriously challenged by any opponent, Republican or Independent. The ARC business As the Federal Co-Chair of the Appala- chian Regional Commission (ARC), Anne Pope made a significant stop-over in Glen- ville on Sept, 30, sowing the seeds for more federal projects at Glenville State College and in Gilmer County. Because the ARC's top administrator came to Glenville, this was a history-making event in itself. Add to that her favorable statements about the joint Glenville State College-Carn- egie Mellon University wireless broadband Internet access project here, and you can get the picture. "People (meaning businesses, educational institutions and governmental agencies) must have high-speed Internet access to be com- petitive these days," she stated at the outset, stressing that the joint GSC-CMU technology project to move this small rural Appalachian area into the forefront of the Information and Communications Age was a ground-breaking endeavor. Let's revisit Ms. Pope's words: "There is no better way to progress than to do it using this modern technology. This is a demonstration project, and we want to demonstrate that small businesses, industries, schools, governmental units and people can overcome the geographic barriers of these mountains. If the project works in Glen ville, it will be a model for other communities where the mountains have im- peded progress for years My family once had a fourth-generation business in Tennessee, so I'm concerned about what happens to these small communities (like Glenville)." Benedum: another big benefactor This publisher was also impressed with the presentation of Mary Hunt who was speaking for the Benedum Foundation. This charitable agency is an equal funding partner with the ARC for the joint $250,000 grant to establish the wireless technology here. I liked her straight-forward manner, when observing, "We have a lot of work to do. This (project for Appalachia) is a call-to-action, because small towns, like Glenville, need to keep up with the larger cities. But, the best thing about this project has been the collaboration among all levels of education, government, business and the people. This inspired the (I.L.) Morris family to give back to their community and to make this Distance Learning Center (at GSC) a reality." In the background making this well-thought- out and orchestrated grant project happen, however, were Larry Baker, GSC's technol- ogy man, and Johi, Whitehill, field manager for Dr. Bruce Maggs's Carnegie Mellon University's Center for Appalachian Network Access (CANA) ....... Sub-Expre G and Opening The gala- and Opening of Sub-Express at Continued on page 5A Musings of an old-timer -- Effects of the 1950s Displaced Persons Act By Frances Myers Schmetzer, alive. Then disappointment set in! Soon after the Glenvillr columnist "After the war, they were housed in camps promised year was finished, Nicholas and Nicholas and Maria came to our farm in administered by the International Refugee MariamovedtoNewYork.Thesecondcouple Virginia in the early 1950s. Organization. Eventually the United States, quickly followed them; all wanting to live I was living in California by then and never Canada, Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Chile, near their own countrymen. By that time Dad met them, but we were all excited about and Australia opened their doors to the ref- had signed papers for a single man - he called helping Europeans who had been left home- ugees. To emigrate to the U.S., a Displaced him 'Judge.' (In time, we discovered his name less by World War II. Person needed a sponsor who arranged for was George.) Congress passed the Displaced Person's housing and employment which could not Judge was a disaster with farm machinery! Actof 1948, and the U. S. Immigration Bu- replace an American worker." (See Dad discovered that he had heen a barber and reau announced that 205,000 DPs and 17,000 www.usmm.org/dp.html) found a job for him in Richmond. Judge was orphans would he permitted entt2 into the As I understand it, Dad also had to pay a a success at that. He came back to the farm to United States The hundreds of thousands of small transportation charge. Persons (who fish, to visit, and to cut Christmas trees. He persons displaced by the war and unable or passed the screening board to "sift out Corn- married and brought out his wife and his son, afraid to go back to their homes had created munistsandothersubversives")hadtoprom- allofwhomcontinuallypraisedDadforbring- problems and pressures the victorious Allies ise to stay with the sponsor a year. After Dad ing Displaced Persons to the U.S. had never anticipated. "There were no long- saw that this was 'working out,' he sponsored Dad barely mentioned this period in his range plans" according to my study on the another couple and started dreaming of build- memoirs, but he did write "the barber was a lnternet. It was a challenge to just keep them ing a craft village on our property, good citizenship risk." Reader questions County Commission's handling of public dollars E4itor, I have read your (stories) about Jim James and what he had to say about the county commission not taking action on the latest figures from the past Rec Center administra- lion. And, I do think that action should be taken on this matter. I understand that the administrator did not do things right, BUT it was our COUNTY COMMISSION that al- lowed it. There have been a lot of things going on that are not right and not fair to the tax payer. What about Commissioner (Reta) Kight's daugh- ter? Is she still getting paid Federal money to do a job that should have been (advertised) in the paper and applications given out for, in- stead of hiring relatives? Is our commission not an equal opportunity employer? Michael Moore, Gilmer County Cedarville man challenges Sen. Byrd, Sen. Kerry on guns value list: "Kerry protects the rights of gun owners." My question to Senator Kerry is: "How have you protected the rights of gun owners by voting with Dianne Feinstein and Charles Schumer on ever(y) anti-gun bill introduced Dem. Ed/tor, On Oct. g, 2004, I received a campaign advertisement in the mall written by Senator Robert C. Byrd. In the advertisement, Sena- tor Byrd states that John Kerry shares our values. Number one on the top of the shared in the U.S. Senate? Does Senator Kerry have a plan that is different from his voting record? If not, Senator Kerry does not share this value with West Virginia Sportsmen. In fact, this is Continued on page 5A "s Attention Readers: Our 'Letters to the Editor' Policy u~ We are.in need of more letters to the editor. Feel free to send them in to required to sign the letter via snail mail. Deadlines for letters are Mondays "'L~ nr~, tuber our policy on the letters, at I 0 a.m. for that week's paper. After 10 a.m., they can he accepted for that newspapers have long been the sounding boards for political, week as paid advertisements. However, it would appear for free in a future per~eelan~ti, and patriotic views and this paper is no exception! edition. etative to writing responses, please keep in mind our Editorial Policy: Also, for writers who consistently send in Letters week after week, these ~oe.wl~ ll_aecept letters on a space available basis only and they wili be subject messages are constantly evaluated as to content and to purpose, se they may ~..o ~ Editor's scrutiny as to content relative to libel, good taste and he considered as an advertisement, especially if they are weekly, lengthy, to'ntelir~$$. e Agoodlentnhis generally one to one-and-a-hal f standard to_ ,, yping . and repeats of previous letters. Nevertheless, you will be contacted if the mPaugeSLd_u.ble-spaced. The decision of the Senior Editor will he final. Letters latter is the case and will be charged only our regular advertising rate. ~o, ue signed in order to be published - e-mailed letters must include a For more information, contact either Dave Corcoran, St., Charlene or v-,me nUmber where your identity can be vet;fie, but you may still be Rebecca at 304-462-7309. ~ Last Issue Before Election: News, Letters, & Ads ~ f ar~h~erlng'standing policy of this newspaper has always been that if, in the issue before an election, one candidate or citizen makes allegations about candidate or issue, that the other party be given the right of rebuttal. Readers of this newspaper know that we editors have had this policy in effect bothm~past_ eight years in order to make certain that the journalistic and ethical principles of fairness and equality be assured on these pages relative to ~and advertising side. .j Welcome Gilmer County alumni to Homecoming, 2004! With the Titan Homecoming coming up on this Friday, we editors and the people of Gilmer County welcome you GCHS graduates who may be returning to Glenville for the traditional Homecoming Parade and game. In addition to the front page article,some special pages featuring past events can be found on page 1 of the second section of this newspaper. But, above all, we wish you well and much happiness while visiting Glenville and Gilmer County High School. Go, Titans! DHC, Sr., Publisher-Editor levies are essential to progress Although most of the news headlines arc dominated by the national and statewide candidates seeking elective offices, four other issues will be determined by the outcome of the impending Tues., Nov. 2 General Election. They are the fates of four essential service agencies in Gilmer County: The Board of Education, Economic Development Association, Community Resources, Inc. and the Ambulance Authority and Volunteer Fire Department. First of all, the Board of Education needs an addition to its current local funding in the amounts of $305,000 annually for repair and maintenance of all school facilities; $201,881, for the purchase of textbooks, school supplies, etc.; and $175,000, for the funding of the school system's extracurricular programs. In a recent speech to the Glenville Woman's Club, Superintendent Ed Toman requested that this club and all other civic groups in Gilmer County assist the BOE in getting the Special Levy passed. With the recent notification that only Giimer and Wirt County have met the federal government's "No Child Left Behind" standards, he feels that the local educational establishment has earned the trust of the community. We editors believe this to be true, too, as our school children deserve the very best that we can provide. Secondly, the Gilmer County Economic Development Association, under new and energized management led by Denny Pounds, is asking to be included in the Special Levy in order to keep its office at the Courthouse open. If Gilmer County hopes to attract new businesses and to aid those firms already in operation here, our county critically needs a strong and well-funded EDA office, with a full-time executive director. In the case of our county, the previous EDA levy missed being funded by only three percentage points. With the county's growth now, new and existing businesses depend on an active EDA to support them. And, so do we editors! Thirdly, Community Resources; Inc., the county's local social service agency, is currently operating on a bare-bones budget. In fact, it doesn't have enough money to buy the food that's needed weekly to assist those families in economic distress. Right now CRI is asking all area churches to fill its food pantry so that its obligations to this county's poor can be met. From month to month, flood to flood, fire to fire and disaster to disaster, CRI has strongly stood by the people of Gilmer County, especially during their times of trial. As a result, CRI has earned the fight to request additional funding. We editors support them in their humanitarian endeavors! Finally, the Gilmer County Ambulance Authority and Volunteer Fire Department are requesting a continuation of their current levy. Whenever there's a fire, accident, flood or other disaster which harms Gilmer Countians, one can find both the Ambulance Authority and Volunteer Fire Department at the scene, helping to relieve the victims and to make their recoveries easier. Right now, these two public agencies are operating on a minimal budget for the large amount of calls that they receive and respond to. And, if you are in that accident or home fire, you want them responding rapidly, which is the reason the continuation of the current levy is crucial to pass. In our reporting of these harsh events, we editors have noticed the high degree of professionalism exhibited by these two agencies, so they have merited a continuation of this levy. Thus, on Tues., Nov. 2, or if you vote by absentee ballot beforehand, this newspaper urges you to vote "For the Levy" in each one of the above instances. The only way for Gilmer County to continue to progress is if we citizens support our local agencies that provide essential community services by voting for these levies which, incidentally, do not raise taxes to any appreciable degree. DHC, Sr. Plan to cast your ballot this Nov. 21 Most Gilmer Countians, West Virginians and Americans have been watching the current 2004 Election Campaign, so the importance of this upcoming General Election on Tues., Nov. 2 is well-publicized. From presidential candidates, Republican incumbent George W. Bush and Democratic challenger John F. Kerry, on down to the state and county levels, these offices being so hotly contested are truly crucial tothe welfare of our locality, state and nation. In the 2000 General Election, Democrat AI Gore won the majority of votes, but still lost the presidency in theElectoral College. Had he received more support from the non-voting public, he may have been elected as our current president. Nevertheless, Mr. Bush did win and Mr. Gore didn't contest the Florida returns, so George Bush has been our president. Our nation, especially during this war-time period, can't stand another doubtful election, in which the Republican-dominated U. S. Supreme Court decides who wins. That's why we ask all Gilmer Counties to help give our nation an accurate and true voters' decision on Nov. 2 --- by doing your civic duty via voting. Or, if you can't vote on that day, go to the County Clerk's Office and vote anytime up to November by absentee ballot. With our state's new "no fault" absentee voting option, there is no excuse for every registered citizen not to vote in West Virginia. DHC, Sr. America & automatic weapons??? of ab by Harmr now ttntll THE 'LAPSE' IN RAPID FIRE WEAPONS -- What do you think about the Federal Government's memory lapse on not renewing the previous ban on selling and using automatic weapons? Are these weapons of mass destruction, owing to the ghastly school house death cdmes and to terrorists' looking for ways to kill Amedcans in Amedca, really needed by common citizens? Like the cow-toon depicts, we think notl DHC, Sr. are now aCcept .