Footing the Bill for the United Nations
Portions of the Opinion page article "A UN With Teeth," Dec. 14, are alarming. Specifically, the mere suggestion of an additional imposed tax on member states, meaning American citizens, is unconscionable.
For many years, the United States footed the bills of the United Nations to the tune of approximately 40 percent. At the same time, many other member states which paid nothing voted against us. It is now my understanding that the US provides approximately 25 percent of the UN budget. Most American citizens pay a local, state, and federal tax; an additional tax - no way. R. D. Clark, Alexandria, Va. A safety net for the farmer
Regarding the Opinion page article, "The Americanization of Rural France," Dec. 17: Perhaps both French and American farmers would benefit if government support was in the form of a tax credit, rather than crop price support.
A tax credit would not encourage the production of surplus crops, but would instead provide a safety net to support the unlucky farmer in difficult times.
If limited to land that is owner-operated, of moderate size, and enrolled in government set-aside programs, a tax credit based on property taxes would encourage a resettling of rural areas without influencing the relative efficiency, and thus market share, of any one nation's farmers. Jared Scarborough, Payson, Ill. The `puppy trade'
The editorial "Clean Up the Puppy Trade," Dec. 7, reminds me of man's inhumanity to animals for the sake of a dollar. If 20,000 young dogs are shipped to Canada yearly, think of the millions of dogs that are rounded up by the Humane Society to be killed because they are not wanted.
We should be willing to support legislation to curtail this pet production. We should provide clinics to have pets spayed or neutered, along with funds for USDA-enforcement of the Amimal Welfare Act in research and breeder facilities. We could then stop this outrageous mass extermination. The cost of one would cancel out the cost of the other. If puppies were in shorter supply, they would be treated better. Afke L. Doran, Silverton, Ore.