The front-page article "Election Ignores US Dependence on Foreign Oil," Sept. 3, is timely and basic to solving the economic problems of the United States. Massive importation of oil is the chief cause of our severe balance of payment.
I propose two solutions to this balance of payment: place a $25-per-barrel import tax on all imported oil and encourage domestic oil exploration by creating the right economic climate. A good economic climate would be where investors' tax incentives were back in place, and there were stable crude oil prices.
An oil-import-tax, while benefiting the domestic oil industry, provides revenue for health and welfare, aid to education, and a viable means to pay off the national debt. Higher crude oil prices would also encourage using alternative fuels.
Our entire economy is geared toward the use of oil, and our high standard of living is based on the consumption of petroleum products. Until we find a feasible alternative product, we had better start exploring for new oil in this country. Kaye R. McCowen, Castaic, Calif. Family values
Regarding the front-page article "Values Will Be a Key Issue in the 90s Election, Conservatives Say," Sept. 22: Alas, in today's politics, key issues mean the stuff you talk about in order to be elected and go back to the old status quo politics. Today's politicians believe you can fool all of the people all of the time. The function of government is to lead, not to get elected. Tom Doherty, Cedar, Mich. The presidential candidates
Regarding the Opinion page article "Why Clinton Will Win," Sept. 22: The author gave several good reasons why President Bush is losing the upcoming election, but the most important was left out - the firm grasp of power held by the conservative wing of the GOP as well as the Christian right. It is hoped that if Mr. Bush and his conservative team lose this election, moderate Republicans will regain control of the Grand Old Party. The vast majority of Americans are moderates and question the freak fringes of the left and right. Charles Hopgood, Boston The peace movement
Regarding the column on the Opinion page "Bush, Clinton, and the New Tyrants," Sept. 17: The author belittles and denigrates the peace movement. Members of organizations like Wand, The Freeze, and Beyond War have foresight and common sense enough to see that although their country couldn't and shouldn't disarm unilaterally, it should not be wasting its resources in playing the game of matching stockpiles of tens of thousands of lethal weapons, any dozen of which could end the world.
They knew and acted upon the wisdom that it is only grass-roots, people-to-people interaction that changes ideas by recognizing our common humanity and that leads to a new brand of Soviet leaders. Give the peace movement its due. Ruth S. Beebe, Lexington, Mass. Made in the USA
Regarding the column "When `Made in USA' Is a Vanishing Label," Sept. 22: The United States has been a 300-year-old leader in opening up a concept of life that has shown to the world a very different way of life. But this world is emulating us, each nation in its own way, and is slowly catching on. We can no longer claim first and only place in this vast development.
These developing nations need a share in this lifestyle. We need to share this phenomenon and become a part of it in a new and innovative way. If we continue to expand our thinking, we'll be accepting a complex and gratifying opportunity. L. Virginia Hector, Lakewood, Colo.