Al Gore and George W. Bush both fail to deliver on real energy policy ("Dazzle of nozzle politics," June 29 editorial). Gore's approach of simply being more efficient does not eliminate oil-using technologies, and his call for developing technologies that are at least decades away from reality, should they ever work, is unrealistic. Bush's thinking that we can coerce OPEC into producing more is laughable.
We need a comprehensive energy strategy. An important energy issue that has been neglected is the reliability of electricity supplies, which has become a necessity for the high-tech industry.
While the average business or homeowner finds outages annoying, to companies like Intel they are devastating, causing the loss of days of production. East Asian countries and others are building state-of-the-art power systems, often leapfrogging our technology with new nuclear plants and gas turbines, and will steal our high-tech markets.
Energy policy needs to be based on what can actually be accomplished, and focused on the complex interconnection between energy and the economy. We need to not let the presidential candidates get away with using energy proposals to woo interest groups, but instead make them give us ideas that could work in the real world.
Robert Boyden Lamb New York
Libertarians are here to stay
Your article, "Libertarians: the third third party" (July 3), confuses form for substance. The Libertarian Party is not a flash in the pan. It is a solid grass-roots philosophical and political movement growing faster than all the shooting stars that appear in the sky and fizzle out within an election cycle or two.
The Libertarian Party has many famous members, but it does not need celebrities to be viable. If it weren't for Ross Perot's money, the Reform Party would not have been created, and were it not for the $12 million in tax-payer money it will receive, Pat Buchanan would not give it the time of day. The Libertarian Party refuses to accept federal funds to run its campaigns. The commission on presidential debates may exclude us. The media may patronize us. The major parties may try to ignore us, but we shall overcome.
David T. Terry Merlin, Ore.
Cell tower woes
Your July 5 article, "Where to put that ugly cell tower? Try a church steeple" should have mentioned that many respectable scientists do not agree that these towers are harmless, especially over long time periods. As for the towers emitting "low-level radiation," they usually emit very high-level radiation which only becomes low level when distance from the antenna is sufficient. There are presently over 70,000 phone towers in the US and they are increasing at such a dramatic rate that even Congress is getting concerned. Sen. Leahy (D) said in a 1997 statement on the Senate floor: "I do not want Vermont turned into a giant pincushion with 200-foot towers indiscriminately sprouting on every mountain and in every valley." Nobody that I know wants these things near their homes, and there are countless battles occurring to prevent that from happening.
Richard Whitehead Merritt Island, Fla.
Hurray for the quiet "invasion" of North Korea by Coca-Cola. As a Peace Corps volunteer leaving South Korea in 1968, I saw huge shipments of Coke arriving in the streets of Seoul. We knew that the country was entering a new era. Let's hope that Coke can leave the door ajar for other economic and social "invaders" to follow that will help the North Korean people.
Ann Hymes Murrells Inlet, S.C.
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