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Letters to the Editor

Compiled by Vail Daily staff
Vail CO, Colorado

Take back GOP

If America were a parliamentary democracy, Mr. Bush would have long lost the vote of confidence needed for him to stay in power.

The messy and distracting impeachment process the GOP forced on the last president and the nation doesn’t seem a reasonable alternative for this lame duck, at least not yet.

Still, the question the nation faces is what happens for the next two years? The surge is clearly failing. Now that there is accountability, the politicalization of non-political jobs is surfacing. Confidence in our national government as a functioning thing that can tackle the big issues erodes daily.

It falls, I think to those moderate Republicans who don’t want to see the dismemberment of that party into two factions: an irrelevant right-wing fringe and a middle-of-the-road conservative party greatly diminished from its former glory. They’ve got a lot to contend with: a lousy record, meddling fundamentalist Christians with money, corruption.

The conventional wisdom would say it’s a bad time to be a Republican. The conventional wisdom would be wrong.

Where are those brave Tories Mr. Safire and his ilk rave about? Where are the leaders of that Grand Ole Party who understand our nation as Mr. Lincoln once did?

Gus Nicholson

It’s not poison

Matt Terrell’s description of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as a “culinary poison” (“It may taste good, but it’s actually healthy” May 13) may mislead your readers about this safe, natural, nutritive sweetener.

HFCS, like table sugar and honey, is composed of fructose and glucose, which are found in many other naturally-occurring foods. Since 1983, the Food and Drug Administration has listed HFCS as “Generally Recognized as Safe” (known as GRAS status) for use in food.

Several press reports have pointed to HFCS as a “unique” cause of obesity. This assertion lacks scientific merit. In fact, Dr. Walter Willett, Harvard School of Public Health Nutrition Department Chairman, told The New York Times, “There’s no substantial evidence to support the idea that high-fructose corn syrup is somehow responsible for obesity.”

There have also been several misguided reports claiming that the body processes HFCS differently than other sugars. New research shows that HFCS is metabolized similar to sugar. Kathleen J. Melanson at Rhode Island University recently reviewed the effects of HFCS and sucrose on circulating levels of glucose, leptin, insulin and ghrelin in a study group of lean women. The study found “no differences in the metabolic effects” of HFCS and sucrose.

HFCS has proven beneficial to consumers through its use in many foods and beverages, including several nutritious school food items that are commonly served, such as: hams, chicken products, cheese spreads, peanut butter, pickles, ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, spaghetti sauce, fruit-flavored yogurts, breakfast cereals, flavored milks, salad dressings, jams, breads, fruit drinks and juices, tomato paste, canned fruits and vegetables, graham crackers, reduced-fat crackers and breakfast cereals.

HFCS can be enjoyed as part of a healthy, balanced diet. According to the American Dietetic Association, “Consumers can safely enjoy a range of nutritive and nonnutritive sweeteners when consumed in a diet that is guided by current federal nutrition recommendations … as well as individual health goals.”

Audrae Erickson

President

Corn Refiners Association


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