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Firstar Fiber CEO Dale Gubbels is dwarfed by cardboard bundles waiting to be recycled. China has stopped buying American recyclables in recent months, cutting into the prices that processors like Gubbles can get for the materials. He also wants to invest more than $3 million in upgrades to his sorting plant.

Is recycling a dead end?

When Omaha started the recycling program we were told that recycling would pay for itself. Which is obviously no longer happening.

With Firststar Fiber jacking up its bid to the city to the sum of $4 million, that brings this more out in the open for everyone to see.

There is not a high demand for recyclables, so the price Firststar Fiber gets paid for it is low. Unless the city can come up with a more viable solution, the recycling program should end after this new contract ends.

Joseph P. Velasquez, Omaha

Off the rails

Let me get this straight: Rep. Don Bacon thinks the opposing party is “off the rails” in its thinking.

When does wanting common-sense gun control supported by over 80% of the people run off the rails? When does providing some type of health care for everyone run off the rails? When does an equitable tax code for everyone run off the rails? When does reducing our national debt run off the rails?

When does wanting a president who provides national security and keeps the country’s signed treaties run off the rails? Most importantly, when does having a president who doesn’t lie and understands and upholds the Constitution run off the rails?

Congressman, if you and your party continue to deny common American needs and support this lying president, it is you and your party that have run off the rails.

Barbara Wagner, Omaha

Fought side by side

I think Dante reserved the last circle in Hell for those who betray a friend, one who has shown good will and support. Dante put Judas there.

In the Oct. 14 New York Times, Peter W. Galbraith, senior adviser to the Kurds, said, “by the end, it was them helping us. They are the ones who recovered the territory that ISIS had taken.”

The Times pointed out that American forces “were living on the same dusty compounds, sharing meals and common dangers. They fought side by side, and helped evacuate Kurdish dead and wounded from the battlefield.”

Gen. Joseph Votel, a former head of Central Command, said, “When they mourn, we mourn with them.”

Now they mourn alone.

Sandra Trandahl, Omaha

Someone to support in D.C.

There is finally someone in Washington I want to support.

The Washington Nationals have proved that working as a team can work.

Go Nats!

Pam Klenda, Springfield, Neb.

Support the president

I am very sorry to hear that Thomas Viessman was offended by the president’s offer to donate the use of his golf resort (“Trump’s massive audacity,” Oct. 26 Public Pulse).

I am especially sorry that he was also offended that the president withdrew his offer because of a few other like-minded people. How dare he do what they actually wanted?

America is at its best when the public actually supports the legally elected president of the United States. If that offends Viessman, he should vote for someone else.

David John Hansen, Omaha

Regretting her vote

Am I the only one who thinks Sen. Ben Sasse is out to make a name for himself? He is nothing but a junior senator trying to get on TV.

I find myself regretting voting for him. Where is he on investigating the other side enough?

Let’s find a challenger, and on game day Saturdays let’s hope he is not the celebrity guest.

Jeanne Fuhs, Omaha

Free stuff

Vote for me and everything is free. What an insane mantra.

I have been duped into ordering a free sample of a product from time to time only to be charged a tremendous amount of shipping (hidden charges). Then, if you don’t cancel by a certain time the next month, you receive more product at a high price.

Sadly, if we allow the policymakers to open Pandora’s box of more “free” entitlements, stopping next month, next year or after decades of really costly hidden charges will likely bankrupt us. Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.

No wiser words were ever spoken than “there’s no free lunch.” Someone, somewhere, will pay the price.

How absurd is it for these politicians to think that we are too obtuse to know they’re only pandering for votes with the ludicrous idea of free everything? Has not history taught us anything?

Socialism does not work. Neither do unmotivated people, which would be the end result of all the giveaways.

Personally, I would like them to take this imaginary money and shore up Social Security — you know, that program that was called a “trust fund.” Blindly, we trusted those in charge and they drained it.

I say again “don’t drink the Kool-Aid.”

Jim Bassett, Bellevue

Texting while driving

I am writing about impaired and distracted drivers.

A few weeks ago, during the Omaha Connect Bicycle Ride, I had the pleasure of having a conversation with State Sen. Robert Hilkemann, an avid cyclist. He reported that he had presented a bill to make texting while driving a primary offense.

That bill then had to go to the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee before going to the floor of the Legislature for debate. The committee did not advance the bill to the floor.

Sadly, many reports about distracted and impaired driving show that texting while driving affects driving much like a drunk driver.

I recommend you contact your state senator and ask to get a viable bill passed to make texting while driving a primary offense, with significant penalties.

Tom Hanthorn, Omaha


The phone number for the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) in the Omaha area is 402-444-6617. The information was incorrect in the Oct. 20 Public Pulse.

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