The Contract From America
Columnist Robert Schlesinger once again exposes his liberal mindset ["The GOP's Agenda Dilemma," July 23]. By cherry picking a few controversial ideas and employing ad hominem attacks on a few Tea Party members, he has written an editorial that can be safely ignored. Why didn't he include what Tea Party's "Contract From America" is about? To paraphrase most of the contract's 10 agenda items, the Tea Party wants to return to the Constitution, demand a balanced budget, simplify and reduce taxes, and develop a responsible energy policy. Who among us doesn't think these are good ideas? By ignoring the facts about the Contract From America, Schlesinger reveals his willingness to push an outdated and unpopular ideology.
BARRY DYSERT Fishers, Ind.
The term "Republican Party's strategic class," used by Robert Schlesinger in his commentary, is an oxymoron.
JACK JAMES Vilas, N.C.
Solving the Energy Problem
"The Senate's Democratic leadership pulled the plug on a comprehensive energy and climate bill that included controversial measures to cut carbon emissions" [Editor's Note, July 23]. If these guys are serious about conserving, how about shutting off their cooling systems? If every government office turned off the air, that alone would save a fair amount of energy and public funds. It also might be an interesting test to identify the truly committed public servants among us. Besides, it's summer. One ought to be warm in the summer. How's that for keepin' it real?
SUSAN STEPHENS Midland, Mich.
I think we are on a massive Titanic, whose captain, crew, and passengers pay no attention to icebergs and steam full speed ahead. The atmosphere cannot absorb the 40 or 50 billion tons of carbon dioxide we emit each year. Warming climate, acidification of waters, and other insults to the environment, as well as excessive human population, will cause civilization to collapse in all too few centuries. I saw an ad on TV by Monsanto Co. about feeding 9 billion people by 2050. It will not happen. By 2050, world population will be in decline with massive die-offs because of lack of potable water and other environmental degradation. I question whether humans can do anything about it even if the political will were to be there, which it will not be.
KENNETH VISTE Boise, Idaho
As for natural gas-fueled vehicles, all that is required is an executive order that all cars bought by the federal government must be powered by natural gas. A year's lead time might be necessary. After the automakers tool up for these cars, they would be readily available on the public market. Since we have huge natural gas reserves, this would lessen our dependence on foreign sources of petroleum. We should go nuclear. As for the "waste problem," an executive order could reverse President Carter's order that banned closed-cycle nuclear power plants. These are used with great success in France, Japan, Sweden, Great Britain, and many other countries. The waste from such a plant is about 4 percent that from the open-cycle plants that we have used since the Carter years. Using nuclear energy would eliminate our need for foreign sources of oil. The only problem I can see with these suggestions is the global economic upset that might ensue.
PETER FOWLER Oakland, Calif.