Letters to the Editor
Readers write about comparing George W. Bush with John Quincy Adams, whether either party really manages the economy better, and the promotion of nuclear power.
George W. Bush is no John Quincy Adams
Regarding the Oct. 27 Opinion piece, "What Bush should do next: run for Congress": It's tempting to compare George W. Bush with John Quincy Adams. They both followed their father's footsteps into the presidency and won highly disputed elections.
However, John Quincy Adams spent his entire public career fighting for a few basic principles he held dear. He promoted the building of roads and canals between the states in order to bring the country together. He was one of the first people in Congress to consistently speak out against slavery. What principle does George W. Bush hold dear that he can champion as a congressman?
Finally, John Quincy Adams witnessed the battle of Bunker Hill from his home as a 9-year-old child. At that battle, the most powerful army on earth "defeated" a ragtag gang of shoeless colonials at horrible cost to itself. Afterward, everyone on both sides agreed that a few more "victories" like that would spell certain doom for the victor.
Imagine what Iraq would be like today if George W. Bush had absorbed that particular lesson from his history books.
Don't blame one party for economy
Regarding the Oct. 21 Opinion piece, "Why the economy fares much better under Democrats": There were some significant omissions from author Larry Bartels's piece. He forgot to mention that during the Carter years we had double-digit inflation and heavy taxes on small businesses. I know. I was, and still am, one of those small-business owners. It was also not mentioned that both President Kennedy and President Reagan cut capital gains taxes when they took office, putting billions of dollars into the economy, and under Reagan we had an increase of 16 million new jobs.
Since the vast majority of the decades under consideration in this piece were also presided over by a Democrat-controlled House, wherein all spending measures originate, the partisan correlation as offered is unhelpful.
The current banking debacle resulted from massive uncertainty directly attributable to easy credit policies embraced by both major parties in an effort to boost homeownership among the marginally creditworthy.
Blaming the overall fate of the economy on one party is as silly as attributing military aggression to Democratic presidents who have presided during times of war.
No nuclear power
Regarding the Oct. 21 editorial, "Build steam for nuclear power": I totally disagree with this argument. The editorial acknowledges that there are still problems with storing nuclear waste. That problem is not going to go away – not soon, not ever. Stating that the waste is being safely stored on site at the plants themselves ignores the very real threat that waste continues to pose.
As we wean ourselves from fossil fuels, we must first begin to drastically cut back on our energy requirements. We must take fewer long-distance vacations. We must grow some of our own food. We must invest in green buildings. Investment in wind, solar, and other green energies, as you wrote, is necessary. But we must not promote nuclear energy.
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