Industry Reaps Benefits of Lumber Shortage

The article ``Greens Deserve Thank You Note,'' Aug. 30, states: ``[Lumber] shortages and the threat of them have the unexpected effect of making the [timber] industry more profitable, analysts say.'' I thought it was an economic maxim that shortages increase profit. How is it that a multibillion-dollar industry fails to recognize this? Ironically, the perceived enemy is the greatest ally, the environmentalist.

Environmentalists have always sung the praises of market control by the timber industry, yet the timber industry is too slow to respond to the reality of this. Instead of the maximum profit possible, if the timber industry would allow for a sustained profit each year and allow their forests to return to old, high-quality standards, the market would not be glutted, the timber would always be of the highest quality, and there would always be an acceptable profit. Brent Conner, Hendersonville, N.C. Action and responsibility

Regarding the article ``Killing of US Student in Racial Attack Shakes South Africa,'' Aug. 30: The killing of Amy Biehl outside Cape Town was a terrible, senseless act. She apparently was a young woman dedicated to fairness and justice and had devoted her life to helping others. Her friend, Melanie Jacobs, said, ``Amy taught me that the youth are not responsible for their anger.'' Surely this lesson was followed by another lesson that should be learned by every civilized person. While those youth may not be responsible for their anger, they are certainly responsible for their actions. Mary M. Jones, Yazoo City, Miss. On the lookout for pork

I wonder if the author of the article ``Cloud Shadows Collider Project,'' Aug. 19, recognizes the dichotomy of the approach of Sen. Phil Gramm (R) of Texas to what is generally referred to as ``pork,'' when considering publicly financed projects. When President Clinton presented his $16 billion public works program, Senator Gramm vehemently denounced it as ``pork.''

One would think that a senator of Gramm's stature, who has been so diligent about protecting the nation's purse strings, would immediately work to terminate the Super Collider.

But what are Gramm and Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R) of Texas (who campaigned on the issue of taxing and spending) doing? They're pressing Mr. Clinton to get behind this project and push for perpetuating it. This push for continued funding, when that money is needed for other more urgent projects, is political hypocrisy at its worst.

Maybe when the deficit is brought under control, when a sound health-care program is put in place, and when the economy is healthy again, then we can consider funding a project such as the Super Collider, with tighter controls. Fernand Feig, Grosse Ille, Mich. No such thing as justified abuse

Regarding the review of Tom Clancy's latest novel ``Without Remorse,'' Sept. 2: The book contains accounts of vicious abuse of women, avenged by John Kelly, ``the hero.'' In each case, the abusers treat the women as objects.

However, Kelly in turn treats the abusers as objects too vile to deserve just treatment, and he kills them ``without remorse.''

Kelly wonders about the morality of these murders, but both he and the woman he comes to love conclude that they are justified.

There is a subtle danger in treating others (however much we may dislike their actions) as objects for our disposal. Given the growing awareness of the relationship between viewing women as objects and the frequent incidents of rape and spouse abuse, the Monitor could have alerted readers of Mr. Clancy's books to this subversive thinking. John Hooper, Elsah, Ill.

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