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Mail June 9, 2004

Impending Oil Crisis

Many esteemed scientists around the world have been predicting that petroleum production will reach a pinnacle and then begin a rapid decline due to the world's current rate of usage.

A group of scientists in 1989 (many former employees of Texaco, Chevron and other oil corporations) came to a similar conclusion: the world's oil reserves would peak in the years between 2006 and 2015. After hitting this global oil peak, America and other petroleum-based countries will be bound to "the inexorable laws of supply and demand," which will in turn "make petroleum ever more expensive until it is no longer economically feasible for society to rely on it."

Today in America, modern agriculture is completely reliant on carbon energy inputs. Currently the average North American meal travels around 1,300 miles before reaching your plate (the Census Bureau counts only 2 percent of Americans as farmers), and if fossil fuels all of the sudden became economically infeasible, then it would precipitate a possible collapse of the agriculture business as we now know it.

The Pentagon has recently speculated that the world could be turned upside down, that violence could spiral out of control, that the world would consume itself in a "war of all against all." And David Goodstein, author of Out of Gas, has written, "Civilization as we know it will not survive unless we can find a way to live without fossil fuels."

Many believe that hydrogen will be our savior, but fail to take into consideration the difficulty of converting it into a sustainable energy source, not to mention the warning of Richard Heinberg that "alternatives will be unable to support the kinds of transportation, food and dwelling infrastructure we now have."

How much longer can Americans afford to remain idle on this issue of catastrophic proportions?

—Brad Eells,

Meridian

BUSH AMOK

"It is time for Rumsfeld to go," I told my U.S. Representative. He wrote back a long letter, "These individuals (U.S. guards in the Iraqi prison) should be punished." In January, I read in the Times of India about sexual humiliation of Guantanamo prisoners. This torture is an ongoing worldwide program sponsored by the highest levels of U.S. intelligence, occurring at centers around the world, not something Lyndie England thought up all by herself. It is pathetic when the foreign press has to tell us about what our government is doing; but let's give the truth a try.

1) Bush lied about weapons of mass destruction to justify an invasion already planned. It is all about oil.

2) Bush is lying about the torture. These acts were planned and approved at the highest levels. They are still going on in Guantanamo and Afghanistan and other locations. This is in addition to the confinement and torture that Egypt has helped us with for years.

3) Each day since we invaded, an average of 200 innocent Iraqi civilians die. To spotlight the beheading of one American adventurer is propaganda.

Quit trying to whitewash all this by court marshaling a few low level guards who were following orders. We need to admit we were horribly misled and just get out.

—Mark Davis,

Boise

CORRECTION

Idaho Housing and Finance Association (IHFA) is a private organization, not a state agency, as erroneously reported in a May 26 news article.

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