Last Word on winter weather, Jan. 10

Winter weather

The writer of “Winter weather” must keep in mind that weather is not the same as climate. A spate of exceptionally cold temperatures over the minuscule portion of the world’s surface that the eastern U.S. represents does not mean the Arctic’s ice is not melting, that alpine glaciers are not receding and that coral reefs are not dying.

During the recent snowstorm, I didn’t always receive mail, but my newspaper was there every morning. Sue Reid, I cannot imagine your cold, dark and dangerous journey each night, but I am so very grateful for your extraordinary service.

A recent commenter asked for an explanation of why our arctic-like weather is not a contradiction to “global warming.” Day-to-day weather is so variable that we should expect deviations from any climate trend. While we were below average, Europe, Asia and the Western U.S. were experiencing above average temperatures, as was the Earth as a whole. Furthermore, we can expect changes in our weather patterns (including cold spells) as the warming in the Arctic causes changes to the polar jet stream. Most atmospheric scientists now use terms such as “climate change” or “climate destabilization” instead of “global warming” to reflect the full range of measured impacts of greenhouse gases on our climate, including changes in precipitation amounts, storm intensity and weather patterns.

During the cold and snow, the USPS trucks are seen delivering Amazon packages, but not the mail.

Global warming is real. Sixteen of the last 17 years have been the warmest on record. Ironically, we are getting this frigid weather because of warming in the Arctic, ice melting in the Barents-Kara seas. This causes the Polar Vortex, a pocket of frigid air surrounding the Arctic, to split and stretch and dip south. That brings us our recent weather.

Where’s the mail?

How does the U.S. Postal Service justify the fact that it has not delivered any mail to our part, if not to all, of Ford’s Colony for three days, Thursday-Saturday? Our roads were cleared, our newspapers delivered and our trash collected, the latter somewhat late, but what were the taxpayer-supported USPS workers doing while private industry workers went about their jobs plowing roads, shoveling driveways, delivering newspapers and collecting trash? We are a community of 6,000 tax paying citizens within the Williamsburg Metropolitan Area who do not have reliable mail service. A worker in a USPS truck delivered a package to a neighbor on Sunday afternoon and had no problem with snow, so now we have to wait and see if postal employees will come out in the cold on Monday to deliver the backlog of overdue mail and hopefully something I ordered from Amazon that was to have been delivered by USPS last Thursday.

Only good news

AT&T was quick to announce a bonus for employees, but more quietly announced layoffs for thousands of employees.

Missing dogs

Something just doesn't feel right. Two small dogs have gone missing in the past few weeks from the Lightfoot area. Both had collars, tags and were microchipped. The owners have sent out info everywhere and have contacted everyone. They have searched high and low. So have friends and neighbors. What doesn't feel right is that there is absolutely no sign of these dogs anywhere. If you have found an older Shit Zu or a young female Beagle, please do the right thing and turn them over to the Heritage Humane Society. Please do not keep them as your own, or use them to hunt with, or worse. They are not your dogs; they belong to other people who are heartsick and want their companions back. How would you feel if someone kept your pet that wasn't really theirs?

Too many taxes

Has anyone experienced this? I leased a vehicle from a local dealer and when I finished the lease and decided to buy the vehicle, I was advised I would have to pay the sales tax on the residual purchase price even though I had paid sales tax on 100 percent of the value of the vehicle when I originated the lease. This along with the property taxes in Virginia and James City County just seems to be wrong.

Looking for …

Found in New Town on Jan 5: Small ring with gold band with flower design. Please call 757-258-1132 to claim.

Is there any group recycling holiday cards?

I'm looking for a tax accountant who understands (really understands) what is required to process income taxes for a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust. Email ddb19026@gmail.com.

Looking for ladies’ and men’s razor cuts? Call Wanda at Jacqueline’s, 229-4499, at Five Forks Shopping Center.

In response to the person looking for the best place to sell gold bracelets, diamonds and fine jewelery; Goodman's Interiors & Antiques at 5251 John Tyler Highway, next to Food Lion in Williamsburg Crossing Shopping Center, is a great choice. Goodman's is Virginia state certified to purchase precious metals and fine jewelery, and they provide a safe and secure place to sell your valuables. Please call 804-854-1400 to schedule an appointment.

No to rezoning

We, too, object to the Holly Hills Villas request to build 53 apartment units across the pond from Holly Hills Carriage Homes. It is currently not acceptable in the city's Comprehensive Plan for good reason. To shoehorn a large apartment complex into a residential neighborhood can only result in a mishmash that will be detrimental to all. This will also affect the viewshed for Yorkshire and upper Holly Hills with light and noise pollution. We hope our neighbors will voice their concerns in emails to the planning commission and/or by attending their meeting at 3:30 p.m. Jan.17 in the Stryker Building.

Big new job

Congratulations to Dr. Constantino on his state position, although I am amused that he is “considered a national expert in the field of family engagement.” As a former W-JCC employee, I waited for those initiatives to be implemented in W-JCC. Promises of initiatives were made, but they all turned out to be nonexistent. So, maybe on paper he is an expert, but no so much in actions.

Equal protection

In order for the population of Southeastern Virginia to achieve parity with the least populated state in the union (Wyoming) this region of Virginia needs to have eight and a half votes in the Electoral College. The last clause of Article 1 of the 15th Amendment, the so-called equal protection clause reads: " … nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." Since in other places in the Constitution and in U.S. law the idea of "one man, one vote" is encoded, the idea that the vote of of a Virginian living in Southeastern Virginia is worth only 11 percent of that of a resident of Wyoming is repugnant.

Get your tickets

Wonderful news! Tickets for the 2018 production by the Sinfonicron Light Opera Company are finally on sale. I can't wait because it is always fun, well-done and money well spent. For a delightful interlude from the recent frigid weather, you should make a point of going to Phi Beta Kappa Hall for the performances Jan. 18-21. Since it is a completely student-run production, it is also important to support this endeavor and shouldn't be missed.

Health care

To the people who want to turn the poor away from emergency rooms: Sorry, you live in a predominately Christian country. I will drive you to the airport if you want to leave.

Still testing you

If your wife asks you to go to Walmart on Christmas Eve, you need two things: one, a psychiatrist and two, a lawyer.

Road worries

At Longhill eastbound, after crossing over Route 199, the right lane ends after a short distance. It has become the norm for drivers in a hurry to speed in the right lane and then cut in front of the drivers in the left lane when the right lane ends. I was almost struck last night by a car that was beside me in the right lane as it ended. Instead of slowing down and dropping in behind me, they put on their left turn signal an tried to force me out of their way. You have the same situation westbound where the right lane is a turn only lane and drivers also try to force into the left lane at the last minute. Rumble strips eastbound in the right lane way before the lane ends would really help.

Christmas show

I am excited to visit the Christmas event at King’s Dominion next year in 2018. I read that it will be very similar to Winterfest at King’s Island, and looked at that website. Wow! The Eiffel Tower is turned into a more than 300-foot-tall Christmas tree with a spectacular patterns and colors in lights. There is a big ice rink where visitors can skate and the Snoopy show will be cute. There are 10 shows/singing events. Busch Gardens needs to add some new things next year, for sure. People from north of KD will probably go there.

Debt limit

Congress has raised the debt limit 78 separate times. A debt limit that is never followed is worthless. It creates unnecessary drama and demonstrates the hypocrisy in Washington. Why do we send incumbents back for another cliff-hanger performance, versus responsibly cutting spending on more waste, fraud and abuse?

Best card

I recently spent Christmas weekend in the hospital. I was missing family and friends and wanted to be home. One of my nurses gave me a handmade Christmas card, made at Chick-fil-A on Mooretown Road by Sophia. It made me feel so much better. I think that is my favorite card and I want to thank Chick- fil-A for such a good idea, and I thank Sophia for her expression of love.

Fate of Jerusalem

Here is some background on the disagreement over the fate of East Jerusalem. In the late 1800s, Jews comprised between 2-5 percent of the population of Palestine, Christians made up about 10 percent, Muslims made up 85 percent. Zionism was/is a movement to establish a Jewish state in Palestine. Through immigration and wars, Zionism has reshaped Palestine. By 1948, about 32 percent of the population was Jewish. The State of Israel was established within Palestine. Today, 50 percent of the population is Jewish, 50 percent Palestinian Muslim and 2 percent Palestinian Christian. Local Catholic church authorities estimate 80 percent of Palestinian Christians live abroad. Palestinians, Christians and Muslims face restrictions on where they can live, work and travel in Israel and the occupied territories, including Jerusalem.

Helping others

I have observed that people who use their money to help others in need instead of on earthly things are making the world a better place to live. These people are an inspiration to all who know them. They lead us to understand that when we obey God, we gain wisdom.

Up in Washington

The president's tweet about the nuclear buttons from the evening of Jan. 2 can be boiled down to the typical juvenile schoolyard taunt "mine's bigger then yours.” It is a shame the two children involved are playing with the future of the world and not just with their pride. Would someone please take the role of the adult and send both of them into a timeout?

To the reader who found him or herself “tired.” All the things mentioned in this message were true and it is long overdue to hear someone call for Mr. Trump to resign. I would like to add one more area of tiredness: I am tired of being embarrassed by Mr. Trump’s antics as he travels around the world. Everything from his rhetoric to refusing to shake hands with Angela Merkel and his pushing himself through a line of world leaders so that he would be up front when pictures were taken. His childishness as he threatens our allies and praises white supremacists. And the beat goes on for as long as he is in office, because he can’t learn.

To the commenter giving his five reasons as to why the Democrats opposed the recent tax bill, here are the facts: 1) Since President Trump won the election — I know you hate to hear that — Democrats have been nothing but obstructionist, making sure they don’t agree with anything that was or will be proposed. 2) Democrats for the last eight years have proposed nothing to address our tax issues. 3) Blue states need to be hammered, as they live on the backs of hard working taxpayers.

About 98 percent of African-American women voted against Trump's man in Alabama. There is a reckoning coming. If Trump was a “genius” he would see it and resign rather than take his party into the caves.

Recently, the president took credit for 2017 being a year without any deaths in commercial aviation on U.S. carriers, even though there is no evidence that the administration did anything about aviation safety in 2017.

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