Letters To The Editor

Don Chapman
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March 26, 2008 - MidWeek
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Boylan boo-boo

Dan Boylan’s rant “Squandering Resources for Profit” is full of holes. The biggest boo-boo was berating the president’s and vice president’s energy policy, saying, “But mandate higher mileage requirements for autos ... not on your life.” He seems to have missed Bush signing the bill that mandates a 40-percent increase in fuel mileage last December.

Another problem with his argument is that to improve fuel mileage, weight and size need to be reduced. When you do that, more people are injured and killed in accidents.

The aging liberal (his own words) is becoming tiresome with his indictment of greedy corporations and their insatiable desire for profits. Think he might have noticed that the stock portfolios, IRAs, 401Ks are where those profits actually go? Profits are a good thing when I earn interest!

OK, now about all those wasteful SUVs at Patsy Mink Park. Stick around next time and see what goes into those big rigs at the end of play. If they were smaller they would need two or three vehicles instead of one and use even more gas.

How about “go to war for oil”? If we went to war for oil, where is it? Supplies are tight and the president and vice president aren’t receiving checks in the mail, are they?

John Mack
Mililani


Nurses judging sin

Nurse Kathleen Bechen has a right to refuse to supply an “emergency contraceptive” pill to women based on her religious beliefs and church teachings, as expressed in her letter. But she should not pass judgment of immorality (sin) on others who do not share her beliefs. She should keep in mind that all religions, gods and teachings are human creations.

Ms. Bechen calls terminating what she believes to be human life before implantation “immoral” (sin). What is really immoral is forcing a female to go through a pregnancy and childbirth that she doesn’t want.

The conservative anti-choice people are so militantly against the rightful choice of abortion, but approve of our illegal, unjust, terroristic invasion of Iraq and the mass murders we have committed there. That is a major hypocrisy. They are not “pro-life” there.

Bert West
Honolulu

Tax fast food

Thanks to Bob Jones for his column about health insurance. I like universal health care because not having to think about employee health care frees each business to do what it does best, which is good for capitalism.

However, a problem with universal health care is that it creates what insurance companies refer to as moral hazard - people overindulge in smoking, drinking and eating because they know that medical care is free.

One way to deal with the moral hazard is to make users of harmful substances pay the “cost to the rest of us” at the point of sale, as we do with alcohol and tobacco. In other words, we should tax toxics and junk food the way we tax tobacco and alcohol, dedicating such taxes to the health care system and reducing other taxes by an equal amount so that the total tax burden does not increase.

Recall the Pearl City man who spilled a gallon of malathion in his yard recently, gagging children out of their classrooms at Highlands Intermediate School. That malathion will do a lot more damage as it biodegrades to toxic daughter chemicals such as malaoxon. Surely malathion and other pesticides deserve to be taxed. I’m not saying they should be banned - occasionally they are necessary - but taxing them gives users an incentive to think of less toxic alternatives.

By a related principle, I prefer a higher tax on petroleum much more than complex regulations telling auto manufacturers what miles per gallon to build into their cars. Regulations require enforcement, which drives up the cost of government, which forces governments to raise the taxes of everyone, even those who do not drive cars.

Neil Frazer, Ph.D.
Kailua


Thanks, Click Chick

Alison Stewart, The Click Chick, brought great joy, indirectly, to my family and me. After she wrote about Blurb.com and her experience with the company and its software, I was encouraged to try the program myself. For years I had considered compiling and cataloging old family photographs, but just never got to it.

It took me nine months to finish my genealogical photo book, and the product I created made the recipients of my book cry with the recall of happy memories.

Thank you so much to Ms. Stewart for enlightening me with her column.

Barbara MacDonald
Honolulu

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