News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.


Letters to the editor

DUNCAN: Time For Sanctuary Against DMV

Letter From R. Scott Duncan

Time For Sanctuary Against DMV

Let’s make Otsego an “Automobile Sanctuary County.”

There is just too much government interference in owning and driving a car. It costs thousands of dollars a year to keep a car moving. Don’t I have some Constitutional rights?

The first step is paying for a learner’s permit. Then you have to pay someone to teach you to drive. Don’t forget to pick up the driving manual that you need so you can learn all about driving. Then you need to take a test. If you pass, you then are obligated to pay for the license.

And not once, but every four years, you pay again, and again and you also have to take an eye exam each time.

Now I have to find a car. That costs money and then the government charges tax on top of the car costs.

If you need a car loan, you will have to pay an interest for the use of that money. You can’t just walk
in and buy a car. You have to play this game about prices and options. Some options you have to pay for because it is the law.

Oh, and don’t forget there is also a registration fee for the car so you can get a license plate. Then every year there is the inspection fee to make sure the car is in good working order.

Then they say you have to have insurance. More money. They make you get insurance. Not once, but every year you have to pay. The government tells what insurance you must get.

If that is not enough the Department of Motor Vehicles sneaks another fee into the insurance policy: “DMV fee, $10.” Didn’t I already pay them for the registration and my license?

Last but not least you need gas plus tax on that. Repairs, tax on that. Then all these rules for driving and fines if you make a mistake!

Gun owners have it easy: a background check, one course on hunting, one course for a pistol permit. A couple of small fees. And that is it for the rest of your life. No more fees, no insurance, no more tests. You got your license.

The Constitution does not give us any rights for driving a car. We are hit by taxes multiple times. And rules…don’t get me started…

It is time we made Otsego County an “Auto Sanctuary.”

Hartwick Forrest

Oust Trump, Focus On Problems

Oust Trump, Focus On Problems

To the Editor:

Local Republicans should start petitions urging President Trump to resign. Senate Republicans will not convict him. Impeachment per se will not get rid of Trump, who obviously enjoys all the attention.
Vice President Mike Pence is hardly a good Republican candidate because of sexual bigotry, but can be an improvement over Trump, who lost the popular election by 10 million votes.

If Trump does not resign: incumbent Republicans or challengers to weak Democrats such as Congressman Delgado will hardly have the time or energy to focus on universal economic
issues. Instead we all will be treated to the usual slogans and propaganda.

Cooperstown’s newspaper and local elites should urge resignation before primaries begin next year. Trump out of office, there will be time to study failures and master non-partisan support for reforms, such as the end of private money in campaigns, and the end of all anti-American ideologies and nationalism.


MOYNIHAN:  To Predict Recession, Read Entrails

To Predict Recession,

Read Entrails

To the Editor:
Predicting an economic future? Just forget the past and reliable evidence.
1. No society has survived by increasing debt and reducing income – that is our present national pattern of lowering taxes and inflating expenditures.
2. Whatever minor tax relief given average citizens, increased fees and higher prices for goods limit their spending ability.
3. Because of new tariffs, U.S. farming communities already face depressed markets and massive reductions of income.
However, ancient methods do exist for any commentator who erases experience to celebrate a blank slate.
Divination pretends to foretell the future with signs – and there are dozens of them beginning with the a’s – alectryomancy, a chicken eating grains placed next to letters in a circle – ending with xylomancy – the use of supposedly predictive twigs.
When any of these inevitably fail, mythic futurists can turn to road-kill: haruspex forecasts the future when interpreters “read” entrails.
One may become infatuated with ignoramuses, but national decisions based on their actions and statements result in destructive economic policies.


Does Society Of Friends


Does Society Of Friends

Offer Solutions To Angst

That Divides Our Nation?

For those who know one, or all, of us, “utopian” isn’t the first word that would come to mind. Practical, fact-based, analytical – those would be better adjectives to describe us.

Yet we can’t help but recognize, locally and nationally, the decrease of civility, neighborliness and cooperativeness in our national conscience and behavior, and wonder if there’s a way for citizens and our leadership to take corrective actions.

Golly, Goodbye To All That Was 2018 – And Welcome To Whatever

Golly, Goodbye To All That

Was 2018 – And Welcome To Whatever

To the Editor:

2018 – Farewell. Actually, farewell is an optimistic term, but there is a better expression: good riddance.  Complaints about the past 12 months …

Unregulated patent medicine ads supposedly improving mental function; as well, pills that do miraculous cures and improvements (making “it” larger, disposing of wrinkles, growing hair). Since 1906, the government supposedly regulates such food and drug fraud. The agency is now narcotized by lobbyists and cash gifts.

Incumbent Trustees Endorsed

Incumbent Trustees Endorsed

Incumbent Village Trustees Ellen Tillapaugh Kuch, left, and Lou Allstadt, right, flank challenger John Sansevere, an independent, at the League of Women Voters’ forum Monday at Village Hall.  Tillapaugh is running as a Democrat; Allstadt appears on the ballot on both independent and Democratic lines.  (Ian Austin/

Editor’s Note: Here are two final Letters to the Editor endorsing candidates in the upcoming Cooperstown village elections.  The polls will be open noon-9 p.m. Tuesday, March 21, at the fire hall on Chestnut Street.

Katz: Allstadt, Tillapaugh ‘Incredible’ Trustees

Blabey Praises Intelligent Management, Vision

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