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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    ‘New’ New Deal would restore U.S. economy

    It’s great that Donald A. Moskowitz writes to the Wildcat from Londonberry, N.H., suggesting that these states aren’t so far apart as they seem. But his impassioned support of Sen. John McCain’s campaign for presidency fails to recognize the relations of the problems raised in his three-point, formulaic “”essay”” presentation. Most Americans, regardless of our “”experience and good judgment,”” recognize that this nation has an energy problem. And that problem is the result of not only our over-consumption of resources but also the global effects of an international policy that has done its best to ensure that we are able to consume as much as we want.

    Then there’s the new reality. Sen. Obama’s plan is not “”untenable.”” In my opinion, it’s too conservative. Indeed, Moskowitz is correct to observe that “”automobile manufacturers have been increasing mileage standards for years.”” But the reality is that this “”increasing”” has occurred only because of external pressure, such as President Carter’s pushing of 55 mph maximum highway speed-limit regulation during the oil crisis of the 1970s (that is, U.S. and the Middle-East in conflict over oil – sound familiar?). The owners of the production of automobiles have no direct concern with miles per gallon. As long as a car sells, profit is generated. As long as we are willing to spend so much for gasoline, profit is received, and so those who “”earn”” it are thankful for the profit and have no incentive to change the game. That thing called “”supply and demand”” doesn’t really work as theorized when supply functions as a profit monopoly.

    As long as that cycle continues – have car = need oil = mucho profit – then “”our national security interests”” will require political and military intervention in areas where oil is available. And if we are concerned about our collective future, then we must accept that oil, because it is a diminishing resource, must play a diminished role in it. To put it another way, off-shore drilling is akin to the Jets signing Favre. So why not now, while it still seems like we can, move toward more use of “”alternative energy resources”” such as “”wind, solar, thermal”” and other resources that we may not even know much if any about yet because we’ve been drinking oil for so long? Sure, the present ability to harness energy from the above resources is lacking; likewise, the first automobiles could not do 55, let alone 195 mph. Heck, a gallon a mile was an achievement in those days.

    Now, Mr. Moskowitz is, I would contend, accurate to claim that nuclear energy is still potentially a viable energy resource. But the problem here is that as long as oil – and the scourge of the 19th-century, coal – remains, along with natural gas, this country’s main forms of energy, then we’re continuing to rely on both limited and diminishing resources – without planning for a future without those resources (see above, Jets and Favre). While I don’t know about New Hampshire, here in Arizona we harness some of our most prevalent energy resource – the sun – to grow stuff and to get tans, but we also let most of it go to waste. And that’s where we get burned. But at least like in the case of nuclear waste, it hasn’t killed us, yet.

    Once upon a time, President Roosevelt’s New Deal helped bring this country out of a pretty bad depression by putting Americans to work building a public infrastructure that Americans across the nation – over 50 years later – have benefitted from, many without realization. Constructed under this program, for example, are many of the trails and campgrounds on Mt. Lemmon and those in most of the country’s National Parks, as well as public programs ranging from Social Security to the building of Hoover Dam to many of the bridges and highways many of us have driven across. Those great accomplishments of long ago should inspire us to more – to more better use of resources and more better application of them, to converting from reliance on diminishing to sustainable resources and from almost-total reliance on untenable forms of transportation like the single automobile for lack of better alternatives to easily accessible, pragmatic, public means of transportation. Would it really be that difficult to put a high-speed train between here and Phoenix? It’s time for a new New Deal – one that builds national and consequently local sustainable industries to put Americans to work creating a sustainable future for the people who will inherit this world from us. And one that would we don’t have to go to war over, except, ironically, with ourselves.

    Greg Grewell
    English graduate

    New format an improvement over old

    I just wanted to send a quick message praising the Daily Wildcat team for an awesome design for our student newspaper. I’m not sure of everything that has changed, but I definitely prefer this to previous formats (and especially to that Summer Wildcat cover). Our daily news source now looks more professional than ever, it appears to flow well from one page to the next, and it’s more aesthetically appealing (to me). In short, I love it.

    Larry Muth
    psychology senior

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