LETTERS: Give solar the opportunity to innovate

In the constant back-and forth-over the recent Public Utilities Commission ruling, one of the arguments in favor of the net metering decision is that solar technology isn’t reliable 100 percent of the time, the way traditional energy is. Another argument is it isn’t fair for people without rooftop solar to subsidize rooftop solar owners. Both are valid arguments.

My dispute to those points is simply that solar technology is still in its infancy. Americans innovate. There was a time when owning a car wasn’t economically feasible. People said mass air transit would never be possible, and that computers would never be cheap enough for everyday citizens to own. There is a laundry list of claims that a product or service would never achieve mainstream success, simply because of the economics.

If a government entity prevented Henry Ford from creating the assembly line, we would have never realized the true potential that cars would bring to the American and global economy. The people who run solar companies are smart people, innovators and job creators. We must give solar, a relatively new technology in the grand scheme, the opportunity to innovate. Allow economies of scale to set in. Create new solar technology that makes it economically feasible for everyone, without government subsidies.

Looking at where a situation is now instead of where it could be in the future is a great disservice to not only our community, but vanguards everywhere looking to make this world a better place through technology.

James Scouten

Las Vegas

Teacher salaries

The ink was barely dry on the Clark County School District contract before Doug Nusbaum sent a letter to the editor complaining about low starting salaries for teachers. According to the National Education Association’s teacher portal, which lists starting teacher salaries, the new Clark County starting salary is in the top 10 percent of the nation. This, in and of itself, is amazing since Nevada is at the bottom of performance standards year after year.

Mr. Nusbaum compares CCSD teacher starting salaries with the average starting salaries of all college graduates entering the workforce. Talk about comparing apples with oranges There are a bevy of studies that compare teacher salaries and benefits with the private sector, if you wish to play that game. The government sector now outperforms the private sector in salaries/benefits over a lifetime.

What private-sector position pays $49,000 as a starting salary and grants its employees a 2½-month summer vacation? Does CCSD prohibit its teachers from working part-time jobs to augment income? What private-sector jobs offer such job security as teachers have and offer pay increases based solely on longevity, regardless of performance? What private-sector jobs offer pension plans comparable to CCSD teachers after 20 years?

I am nearing 70 years old, and I have never heard a guidance or employment counselor recommend entering the teaching profession based on pay. Let’s see if the performance of CCSD teachers warrants the pay increases in the coming years.

Michael A. Donnelly

Las Vegas

Isocrates and Bundys

I read a book recently on the 2008 economic meltdown and came across a most interesting quote. Isocrates, an ancient Greek rhetorician, said, “Democracy destroys itself because it abuses its right to freedom and equality. Because it teaches its citizens to consider audacity as a right, lawlessness as a freedom, abrasive speech as equality, and anarchy as progress.” Although Isocrates died in 338 B.C., it seems he anticipated the Bundy clan and its gun-toting, gibberish-spouting militia buddies.

Terry Cox


MGM parking fee

Despite months of analysis that clearly didn’t include focus groups of locals, MGM Resorts International announced a pay-for-parking plan (“MGM to charge for parking,” Saturday Review-Journal). The Strip already offers overpriced restaurants and overpriced entertainment, so this just adds one more reason for locals to avoid it. I’m sure Boyd Gaming and Station Casinos are thrilled.

Eric Yaillen

Las Vegas

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