Bureaucrat Beat: T.Boone Pickens, Good Neighbors, Good Cops

Imagine our surprise when we saw a TV ad that featured big, and we do mean very big, oilman, T. Boon Pickens. He said he wanted to talk about oil. We instantly jumped to the conclusion that Pickens would cheerlead for offshore oil drilling and other such tactics. But, no! He proselytized for an end to oil dependency. We went to his website and, yes, with further amazement, we read about his plan for wind power. Pickens argued to build wind generators from the Texas panhandle to North Dakota.

Pickens has spent millions on campaigns of Republicans, but his entrepreneurial pizzazz and old Texas know-how have revealed the future to Pickens – a future not just for oil. The Sierra Club has endorsed Pickens wind plan. Will wonders never cease. Hope, after all.

Creative individuals usually get the job done. Government limps along by comparison. Take a small, local situation. The gals at the Lone Pine Senior Lunch Program offered thanks to the Lone Pine Thrift Store folks for donation of what they described as a beautiful hand-crafted kitchen screen door at Statham Hall, a place woefully neglected by county government.

In a letter, program cook Denise Muniz and site coordinator Pat Boyer said this:

“The door had to be hand made because of it’s measurements and constant use.It was crafted by John Rand at Wood Design, painted by Sal de La Torre, as well as the outside facing. It was much-needed here at Statham Hall, home of the Senior Meals-on-Wheels program.”

They also thanked Sal de La Torre for his voluntary maintenance work at Statham Hall and thanks to Roger Rasche and Paul Dunakin for volunteer custodian work. Thanks to Thrift Store volunteers Babe and Don Elliot. As Denise and Pat noted, “In times of such budget cuts and shortages as we are presently experiencing, we especially honor our volunteers with a big THANK YOU.”

Notice that so far, none of these fine deeds sprung from bureaucracy. Okay, here’s one that did. We received a copy of a letter a little while back from a Westminster, CA man. He visited Mammoth to watch his granddaughter and grandson race in the Motocross. The man, Charles Miller, said that one night during their trip a woman pounded on their camper door for help. She told Miller her brother-in-law was drunk and had threatened to kill her and his wife with a chainsaw.

Miller reported with admiration the fact that it only took Mammoth Police 5 minutes to arrive on scene after the allegedly drunk man started a gas explosion. Miller relates how the officers calmly but firmly blocked the road and gave the suspect orders until he gave in. Then they spoke openly to the victims.

The Westminster visitor commended Chief Randy Schienle “for I know the tone and character of the department is set by you,” wrote Miller. “I would say that if the rest of the men and women who work for you have the same training and professionalism that these officers showed, you have a mighty fine department.”

We will add that we reported on this assault with a saw incident and gladly passed on the fine impression made by our men and women in blue.

Back to the guys in the black hats – otherwise known as the U.S. Attorney General and the heads of National Security. They’re the ones who want unfettered access to our phone calls and emails, in case they decide we might be terrorists.

Go ahead and call the ACLU commie pinkos, we know some of you do, but they have filed suit against the government to stop the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. They say it violates our first and fourth amendment rights – which to us in the Bureaucrat Beat newsroom mean just as much as the second amendment.

Tell us how you will feel when they’re listening to your conversations?!!

Yours in privacy and freedom of expression, this is Benett Kessler signing off for Bureaucrat Beat where we await your word on our lives in the Eastern Sierra and beyond.

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