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Letters to the editor

editor@vaildaily.com

Evil corporationsSunday’s New York Times had a story about how the Labor Department is trying to quantify the amount of jobs that are flowing out of this country. Although the national economy appears to be improving, job growth isn’t as strong as expected. One factor is that American businesses are increasing activities overseas; so while their staffs are expanding, it’s branches in other countries that are getting a lion’s share of that increase.Some causes for this problem can be gleaned from the pages of the Vail Daily. David Levine wrote a letter taking U.S. businesses to task for exporting jobs. He pointedly ignored the root causes, contenting himself with attacking the patriotism of those businesses.Sunday’s Vail Daily had a story headlined “Bush Administration Erases Wilderness Protections” and “Protections: Free To Drill In Wilderness Areas.” It was about drilling for oil and gas on federal land. These headlines were misleading because it turns out that areas already designated wilderness weren’t slated for drilling. It was places proposed or under study for wilderness designation that are involved. Who is responsible for these headlines?This was a news story, not an opinion piece. Allegedly. There was scant coverage of the other side, such as the possible benefit to America by having more domestic energy resources, as opposed to the Middle East.Saturday’s Vail Daily had a column attacking corporations by Alan Braunholtz. Like others who take this tack, he is really expressing anti-business ideas. There’s a difference. Businesses can be corporations, but so can charities and advocacy groups. The Vail Daily is produced by a corporation, Swift Newspapers Inc. Is Braunholtz saying that Swift is evil per se?There is no doubt some businesses do bad things, because the people who run them are human. So can governments, charities and advocacy groups – because the people who run them are also corruptible. Look at Earth Liberation Front, which does terrorism in the name of the environment. How many times have we seen charities whose principal beneficiaries seem to be those who run them? Do politicians always act in thepublic interest? The question is, does free enterprise do more good than bad for people? What alternatives do the anti-business types propose? Be specific.Back to the point about jobs flowing overseas – I’ve previously pointed out why California is losing so many businesses and jobs.The same principle applies to the United States. The climate here is difficult for business, compared to other places. There are taxes, environmental regulations, employment laws, safety standards, unions, zoning laws – and on and on.You can say that this or that tax or regulation is a good thing. Maybe so. But many have an adverse affect on the desirability of this state or nation from a business point of view. Increase these burdens enough, and businesses start considering options, like going offshore.There must be a better balance between public policy and commercial concerns that doesn’t kill the golden goose.What specifically do David Levine, Alan Braunholtz & Co. propose – arrest businessmen for transferring jobs overseas? Enact tariffs or other regulations to tilt things in favor of domestic producers? Impose sanctions on countries that provide friendly venues for American businesses? Send in the troops, maybe? Like I said – be specific.Terry QuinnEagle


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