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Land-Use Issues Need Better Solutions

The article ``Tree-Huggers Fail to Shift Western Politics,'' Nov. 2, was right on target, as confirmed by the election results.

For years, environmentalists have been banking on environmental activists from the East and California to move into Western metropolitan areas and tip the scales against traditional land stewardship practices.

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The ``War on the West'' and related property rights themes resonated in eight Senate races, of which the Republicans won six. In the House, 12 Democratic incumbents lost in races where property rights was a prominent issue. And three Democratic governorships fell to the GOP where this was an issue.

By contrast, no Republican incumbent who took a prominent position on property rights was defeated. Independent exit polls in Oregon and Washington showed that almost twice as many people believed that the administration's policies on land use and natural resources hurt rather than helped their state.

The forest industry's hope is that the administration will work with Congress in a bipartisan fashion to produce a consensus solution for land-use issues. Mark Rey, Washington American Forest & Paper Association

North and Nicaragua

The writer of the letter ``North is an Honorable Statesman,'' Nov. 10, is a victim of the misinformation aspect of the warfare that the US waged against Central America in the 1980s.

The ``official story'' - that Nicaragua was a totalitarian Soviet-controlled Communist country - was difficult to comprehend for those of us who actually spent time in Nicaragua.

The writer's notion that North made efforts to stop Salvadoran death squads - while the Reagan administration was sending the government that spawned them $1.5 million a day - is an Orwellian fantasy that I never heard of while in El Salvador. Joan Peters, Aurora, Colo.

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