Letters to the Editor
Readers write about why Hillary Clinton should not become secretary of State, why the results of a recent green poll could be misleading, what a 'science president' is, and a way to end a dispute between India and Pakistan.
Hillary Clinton should not become secretary of State
Regarding the Nov. 20 Opinion piece, "Secretary of State Clinton?": Would such an appointment really be the springboard to a future run for president, as John Hughes's commentary posits? Not likely.
Why would Sen. Hillary Clinton leave the Senate after a hard campaign for president which she was favored to win, but which she lost? Why would she want to work for her opponent, when she could return to the Senate and have far more independence?
Running the State Department is running a large bureaucracy, answerable to the president and to all sorts of outside influences. Senator Clinton might also find running someone else's State Department an obstacle toward running for president in the future.
If the senator hopes to have any presidential future, she will stay in the Senate and polish her record of service. That course would give her the independence she claims she has always had in making decisions, rather than making it appear that she is beholden to partisan politics.
Green poll results may be misleading
Regarding the Nov. 19 article, "Poll: World wants green action, despite costs": I think this poll's findings should be taken with a grain of salt. There are additional considerations.
First, people tend to say they would be willing to pay more, but when actually faced with a choice between higher and lower costs, they will often choose the cheaper path. Second, costs are not the only hindrance to green action. Perceived excessive sacrifice is often a delay to proceeding with green action. For example, a proposed green project may cause a sacrifice of an endangered species. This could delay the project.
Robert A. Brown
What is a 'science president'?
In regard to the Nov. 20 editorial, "Obama as 'science president": Being comfortable with the Internet and solving the problem of climate change have little in common. How can one say that President-elect Obama will be a "science president"? His educational background is in political science, international relations, and a rather narrow and specific area of law.
In my opinion, change needs to start in Congress. Qualified advisers or not, our representatives need to have a solid understanding of science. This is where we should look to begin solving our educational and environmental problems.
President-elect Barack Obama can be a "science president" immediately, simply by honoring scientists' work and not rewriting it to conform to political bias, as the current president does.
Ann M. Bovbjerg
Iowa City, Iowa
A way to end a Pakistan-India dispute
Regarding the Nov. 21 article, "Is Kashmir key to Afghan peace?": I hope that when dealing with this sensitive issue, President-elect Obama and his team make use of Pakistani Americans and Indian Americans to persuade their nations of origin for a negotiated settlement. For example, APPJD (Association of Pakistani American Physicians for Justice and Democracy) has worked on a consensus statement regarding Pakistan-US strategic goals. Also, the US media could highlight views of the immigrant population who get along with each other in the US and want to help abroad.
Baton Rouge, La.
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