Here’ s a quick survey of this weekend’s North Country opinion pages.
The Plattsburgh Press-Republican wants a big splash next year as we hit the bicentennial of the War of 1812.
We all know the result of that war. America withstood the invasion and solidified its standing as a nation among nations. We all know that the Battle of Plattsburgh, celebrated locally every Sept. 11, played an immense role in the Americans’ success by proving that a much smaller American force could defeat the juggernaut from the British Isles.
But that victory, in many ways, is one of our best-kept secrets.
The Press-Republican calls this a great opportunity to educate the nation about this conflict, and our region’s role in it — but the paper acknowledges that money for such a celebration could be tight.
Glens Falls Post-Star
The Glens Falls Post-Star, meanwhile, is writing about a more contemporary dust-up, over the future of land acquisitions in the Adirondack Park.
The newspaper has concluded that in a time of budget deficits and state lay-0ffs, purchasing the Finch, Pruyn lands makes no sense.
But at what point does enough access become enough? The state already owns 2.9 million acres of land in the Adirondacks, an area a little smaller than Connecticut.
There are already 2,000 miles of hiking trails – enough to hike from here to Florida and back – by far the most of any area in the United States.
Last week, snowmobilers praised the Finch, Pruyn deal for opening more land for recreation, but the Post-Star suggests that it’s time for sportsmen to pick up more of the tab.
If snowmobilers and outdoorsmen want more recreational opportunities than those that currently exist, they should be willing to pay for those opportunities themselves though land leases and purchases.
Watertown Daily Times
The Watertown Daily Times is looking at the apparent disconnect between voters’ attitudes over taxes and government services.
A new poll found that people prefer program cuts over tax increases, except when it comes to paying for the really expensive stuff, like Social Security, Medicaid, and the military.
Doug Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office, said:
“The United States faces a fundamental disconnect between the services that people expect the government to provide, particularly in the form of benefits for older Americans, and the tax revenues that people are willing to send to the government to finance those services.”
The Adirondack Daily Enterprise
The Adirondack Daily Enterprise is asking for suggestions for volunteer of the year in the Saranac Lake-Lake Placid-Tupper Lake area.
The Volunteer of the Year should be someone who has made a real, active commitment to helping out in his or her community. It could be someone who seems to always be helping out with one activity or another, someone who has demonstrated unwavering support to just one program for many years, or someone who has made huge contributions in the past year in a single area.