Letters to the Editor

Readers write about the true definition of wealth, why the Big Three should be allowed to go bankrupt, how to fix bad mortgages, and letting teenagers explore the Internet on their own.

Wealth should not be measured by money alone

In regard to the Dec. 3 Opinion piece, "Want less, spend less – wealth is relative to desire": Author Diane Cameron nailed it when she wrote, "It's when we are satisfied with what we have, that we become rich." I liken that statement to a Middle Eastern proverb, "Enough is a feast." The desire to accumulate wealth is fraught with angst-filled snares. Enough is never enough for those enslaved to greed.

Christianity's greatest role model is Jesus Christ. What we know about Jesus tells us Christ was not one caught up in desiring wealth. It is ironic that the health of the US economy is so dependent on the enormous amount of spending that takes place during each Christmas season, the time we celebrate Jesus' birth.

I believe Jesus would favor an economy that spread the wealth around to an economy that enabled a rich few to accumulate great wealth at the expense of everyone else. Jesus knew the pitfalls that befall those whose desire is to be wealthy. It is sad that capitalism's success depends on constant spending of money we don't have for things we don't need.

Paul L. Whiteley Sr.
Louisville, Ky.

Big Three must go bankrupt

Regarding the Dec. 5 editorial, "Why a Big Three rescue is so hard": Thank you for this piece, which reflects the internal struggle many of us are having with a bailout of the US auto industry. Having been a young man in the early 1960s, I am a confirmed car guy who fondly remembers a time when the auto industry was king. Simply put, none of the options we can devise to save the industry are palatable to everyone.

It is with deep regret that I have come to the conclusion that we must allow the industry to go into bankruptcy. This is the only way to create the circumstances that will result in the restructuring required to keep the industry alive. Throwing more federal dollars at the problem will only add to the debt that we owe to the world.

That said, I expect that sooner or later, Congress will pass some bailout that will include an ownership stake and a federal industry "czar" to oversee the restructuring of the industry. If this is the case, there is only one person who should be considered for the job: Mitt Romney. He has a proven track record in corporate turnarounds and a direct but arm's-length relationship with the industry. Unfortunately, with a Democratic-controlled Congress and Mr. Romney a potential future rival for the presidency, it is doubtful that he will even be considered. In today's political environment, politics trumps performance.

Bob Klinger
Goose Creek, S.C.

Let courts adjust mortgages

In regard to the Dec. 2 commentary, "Let bankruptcy help fix bad mortgages": Surely the remedy suggested in this article (of allowing bankruptcy courts to adjust the terms of a mortgage so as to keep homeowners in their homes) is one change that can be made to help turn around this crisis.

If only American legislators understood the harm that the unethical US mortgage practices have inflicted on the whole world via the financial crisis. If they did, they would do something to right the wrongs that have come about as a result.

John Patterson
Adelaide, Australia

Teenagers need independence

Regarding the Dec. 5 Opinion piece, "My teen wants a computer in his room. I say no. Here's why": As a father of five, my take on this is that by the time a child is 14, you've had your chance to create trust and share values with him. Now, he needs a chance to make mistakes, as well as discover what his values are going to be in the context of a wider world.

David Gray
Moscow, Idaho

The Monitor welcomes your letters andopinion articles. Because of the volume of mail we receive, we can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. All submissions are subject to editing. Letters must be signed and include your mailing address and telephone number. Any letter accepted may appear in print or on our website, www.CSMonitor.com. Mail letters to Readers Write and Opinion pieces to Opinion Page, 210 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to Letters and Opinion pieces to OpEd.

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