GATT Is a Threat To US Sovereignty

By , Donald L. Gibbon, Richard D. Soule

THE author of the opinion-page article ``Why Americans Can't Afford to Pull Back Now on GATT,'' Nov. 28, omits important aspects of the new GATT and its undemocratic World Trade Organization (WTO).

Contrary to the author's defense, GATT is not ``purely an economic arrangement.'' Under GATT, bans on products of child labor, environmental degredation, and animal suffering are relegated to the status of ``technical barriers to free trade'' and can be destroyed by GATT.

Although GATT will not empower a WTO police, to ensure national compliance with international trade rules, it does establish a system where parties can unilaterally or en bloc impose retaliatory sanctions against an ``offending'' country.

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Must we accept a global trade scheme in which the US is forced to defend wise legislation enacted with popular public support against foregin-vested interests? Must we then pay fines or endure sanctions should such a defense fail? These are vital questions to ask when assessing the WTO; the answers point to the very reason why the new GATT is a threat to our sovereignty and should be rejected. Adam M. Roberts Washington

Ecosystem needs rebalancing

The article ``Deer, The Bane of Suburban Lawns,'' Nov. 9, misses the point. Protecting the lives of individual deer is sweet and kind, in a shortsighted sort of way. But it ignores the fact that excess deer populations are massively changing the entire ecosystems in which they live.

The article mentioned Fox Chapel, Pa. The deer there became a headline issue when they destroyed tens of thousands of trillium plants along the Trillium Trail. Deer have destroyed the regeneration stock for both trees and understory plants over thousands and thousands of acres. There has been zero regeneration of white pines and beech trees for 50 years in Pennsylvania's only national wilderness area, Heart's Content. The deer have eaten them all.

To look at the deer issue as if suburban marigolds were the problem is a pathetic misstatement of its severity. We killed off all the predators except cars and humans, and now the humans have to take responsibility for seeking some rebalancing of the system. State wildlife management policies are failing to achieve their goals. Sorry, but lots of the deer are going to have to go. Donald L. Gibbon Pittsburgh

Tasting success without high IQ

The opinion-page article ``The Bell Curve Rings False,'' Nov. 14, reminds me of how unimportant IQ was in predicting my life's prospects. I never had a high enough IQ to qualify for ``advanced learning'' classes in high school. Yet, I graduated fourth out of a class of 600, went on to complete a bachelor's degree, and have enjoyed a successful career in the business world. How did I do it? Hard work, to be sure. But I also had loving parents who were interested in my schoolwork, and dedicated teachers who encouraged me to do my best.

Refusing to label children as smart, dumb, slow, or fast is the best thing we can do for the younger generation. Richard D. Soule Vista, Calif.

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