The Blade's Dan Simpson offered thoughtful proposals in his Dec. 29 column, "Foreign policy: Keys to success in the year ahead," including the need for the United States to reduce its unhealthy dependence on foreign oil.
True enough, but what we really need to do is to reduce our growing dependence on oil, regardless of source.
The U.S. uses a quarter of the world's production every day. Our percentage of imports grows every year. To "drain America first" is not the answer. One, it will make very little difference and, two, such a shortsighted energy policy will increase our vulnerability to supply disruptions.
An increasing number of global oil exporters are turning into importers. Two-thirds of the world's proven reserves are in the Persian Gulf area (where I have been). The Gulf cannot continue to meet rising global demand.
It's time for renewables. A doable intermediate American step is in the transport sector: aggressive promotion of already existing gas-electric hybrids, low-emission diesels, and bio-fuels. Hydrogen fuel cells are for the future.
Some petroleum companies are forward-looking. They should be encouraged. Enlightened companies will create new jobs in our so-called Rust Belt.
JOHN G. MERRIAM
Just when I thought I could not take one more hypocritical utterance from Bush supporters, the ultimate, most unabashed, assault on the intelligence of half of this country took place while I was standing in line near a newsstand. Staring me in the eye was the Time person of the year issue.
They had actually picked a person who is responsible for the deaths of approximately 19,000 people.
Could the audacity of these supporters become anymore blatant?
Is anyone else wondering what is going on in this supposed democracy? Are you worried about how your children are going to fare in a country like this? You should be.
Does anyone realize what our soldiers are being put through, and why? About the horrors the Iraqis are putting up with? My hope is that the people of this country, rather than go to the mall this holiday season, would have bought the Iraqi people some peace. It appears as if our country can buy just about anything, especially the "truth."
CATHY JO KUZMA
What's an insurgent? I keep seeing this word every day. Webster defines it as a person who revolts against civil authority. When someone is trying to kill me, I call that the enemy. I'll try to kill them first. In Iraq you don't know who your enemy is until he throws a bomb or fires his weapon at you. You can't tell a good guy from your enemy. They all look alike.
This war seems like another Vietnam getting started. Soldiers are losing faith in what they are doing. It's time to pull out of there. As for the insurgents being held prisoner over there, I think we should set up an adoption program for these poor abused and mistreated people. Wouldn't that be interesting?
I recently read that "surprise dividends" will save city trash service. Why was I not surprised to hear Mayor Ford say that he will worry about 2006 budget problems in 2006? That's exactly why the city is in trouble now. Make some hard decisions and cut out wasteful spending and balance the budget. Why can't our elected officials learn to be proactive?