US Position on Farm Supports in World Trade Talks

The article ``Farm Issue Threatens GATT Talks,'' Oct. 16, on the current round of international trade talks angers me. The author states, ``There is nothing pristine about the overall US position in Geneva,'' and goes on to tell how farm supports are ``hurting the world's most efficient producers.''

The US proposes to take away farm supports, thereby refusing both ``to shield farmers from the vagaries of weather and exchange rates,'' and to ``heed eloquent statements about the importance of maintaining rural farming communities,'' which Europeans still do.

The author seems to agree that the American people cannot afford to eat the produce of small farms. Yet we should never be at the mercy of a handful of factory farmers and grain traders. Just ask the people of the third world. Carla Cole, Seattle, Wash.

The article ``Outlook for Farmers Bleak as World Grain Prices Fall,'' Oct. 16, examines the implications of how UN sanctions against Iraq, the increasing ability of third-world countries to support themselves, and the failure of government to produce a working budget will affect American farmers. If crop prices are not held to a reasonable rate, many farmers will have to default on loans, forfeiting their farms and livelihood.

Not only will farmers be hit hard by the loss of their farms, but many will have to learn a new trade (at the expense of taxpayers), and those who cannot find jobs elsewhere will have to seek welfare or other assistance.

We need to learn to care for our farmers. If we do not, who's to say they'll be around in the future to take care of us? Diana Bowers, Florence, Ala.

Revive economy, reduce deficit Regarding the editorial ``Loosen Monetary Reins,'' Oct. 12: Most senators and other members of Congress are reluctant to raise taxes and reduce federal spending.

They know that a simple move by the Federal Reserve to reduce the high interest rates imposed by the Fed would be more effective in reviving the economy and increasing federal revenues and reducing the deficit.

The author is to be congratulated for having the courage to mention high interest rates as a cause of our difficulties and to name the Federal Reserve as responsible for saving our economy. Ardron B. Lewis, Brooklyn, Conn.

Bush and Ike The opinion-page column ``Eisenhower's Leadership Has Lessons for Today,'' Oct. 16, attempts to identify President Bush with former President Eisenhower.

The author has forgotten what Eisenhower said about Vietnam in 1954: ``There is going to be no involvement of America in war unless it is the result of the constitutional process that is placed upon Congress to declare it.'' Ike would not consider Bush's arming of the Middle East as ``his finest hour.'' Robert Santway, Brattleboro, Vt.

World War II dues The editorial ``Paying an Overdue Bill,'' Oct. 16, rightly argues that reparation checks and written apologies to World War II internees are warranted.

I'm left wondering, however, when Prime Minister Kaifu and the Japanese government are going to apologize to my father for giving two years of his life to the US Navy during the war. And when will the widow of my great uncle receive her reparation check for years of torture endured in Japanese POW camps? Christopher D. Katis, Monterey, Calif.

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