- The Washington Times - Monday, March 13, 2000

I'm writing to comment on the Sen. John McCain-Maria Shriver exchange as reported in the March 9 "Inside the Beltway" column. The problem with your report is that it is inaccurate.

The column represents Mr. McCain as having a "tantrum" and shouting "in the meanest voice he could muster." I have watched the exchange on video and heard it on the radio at least six times now. If anyone was shouting even shrieking it was the NBC correspondent; and the senator replied in a weary, rather than a mean or angry, tone.

My guess is that if any other Republican had asked a reporter from the Kennedy family to "please go away," particularly in defense of his wife, the conservative news media would be heaping praise on him.

But the same media are determined to vilify Mr. McCain, so this episode is being trotted out in support of the canard that the Arizona senator has a screw loose.

One is tempted to reply as England's King George II did when told Gen. James Wolfe was a madman: "Mad, is he? Then I hope he will bite some of my other generals."

CATHERINE WINDELS

Scarsdale, N.Y.

No good reasons for Alan Greenspan to raise interest rates right now

Lawrence Kudlow seems to be one of the very few who have it right about Mr. Greenspan's actions ("How could he bear it?" Commentary, March 6). The Fed chairman is too bright to be dismissed as a Stone Age thinker, but his stated reasons for raising interest rates suggest otherwise. To begin with, he seems to view money and the supply of money as derivatives of the idea that money is a goal. It is not. Money is a tool, a commodity. Wealth is the goal that both business and individuals have in mind.

Next, all this hooey about his concern for inflation is just that. Higher interest rates themselves can be inflationary because they raise the cost of goods, of services, and most especially of utilities a major segment of the measure of inflation. Although no one would deny higher interest rates' effect of curbing consumer spending on discretionary items, electricity and natural gas for heating and cooling and operation of a household are not discretionary. The unstated reasons for raising interest rates involve election-year politics. When this administration successfully persuades Mr. Greenspan to lower rates a little later this year, along with the predictable reduction in taxes on oil and gasoline, listen to Mr. Clinton and Mr. Gore crow about their looking out for us all. How about it, Alan? Have a cigar on me and contemplate.

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

McLean

Many thanks to The Washingtopn Times for covering a killer disease

The International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) applauds The Washington Times for its continued coverage of Roger Neilson and his ongoing battle with multiple myeloma, a fatal bone marrow cancer that affects close to 100,000 people in the United States. With more than 14,000 new cases being diagnosed each year, myeloma is one of the deadliest and fastest-growing types of cancer in the Western world.

While National Hockey League fans nationwide have an obvious vested interest in following Mr. Neilson's battle against myeloma, we feel that The Washington Times is in a unique position to not only provide status updates on his condition, but also to help educate the public-at-large about this devastating disease that accounts for close to 15,000 deaths annually. As such, we encourage the paper to consider expanding its coverage of Mr. Neilson to include an in-depth look at multiple myeloma: its causes, key risk groups, treatments, breakthrough developments and what's being done in an attempt to conquer this growing public health threat.

Knowledge is power. The more the public knows about myeloma, the greater our chances of one day eliminating it. The International Myeloma Foundation has a 10-year history of supporting the research, education, advocacy and treatment of multiple myeloma.

Headquartered in Los Angeles with a branch office in Philadelphia, we exist to provide patients, their families and the medical community with the information and resources they need to make educated treatment decisions. Contact us by calling 323/654-3023 or via our toll-free hotline at (800)452-CURE. We also can be found on the Internet at (www.myeloma.org). Our thoughts and prayers go out to Mr. Neilson and the thousands of patients currently battling multiple myeloma.

SUSIE NOVIS

President

International Myeloma Foundation

Los Angeles

Stop the unlimited, unreciprocated flow of Chinese goods into this country

We pay our lawmakers quite handsomely to represent our interests in Congress. Yet, not one of them seems to know how much profit the oil producers are making at the wellhead or at the refineries at that stage of the process. Isn't that interesting?

Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan wants to raise interest rates again to slow our economy down. He is afraid that consumer demand for products will add greatly to our already huge trade deficit.

This country no longer produces the products that American consumers want. Our government, under the mantra of "free trade," has systematically exported our industry and our jobs. We open our markets while other countries close theirs to American goods.

How long can our economy survive this unilateral surrender to so-called free trade?

Here's something even more interesting. Go shopping and try to buy American-made goods. You want a television or a radio? Try to find one made in the United States. A pair of walking or tennis shoes? Try again. How about jeans, shirts or dresses? Try again. Clocks? Nope. . More and more of our cheap hand tools are coming from China not our friends in Taiwan, but good-old, Clinton-aided, most-dangerous-enemy China. China is greatly expanding its military strength with American dollars and technology given to them by our president.

The last time (about 1990) oil and gas prices went up, and the Fed raised interest rates, as is happening now, we had a recession.

We exported jobs to Mexico, gave it money to save its miserable, drug-producing economy and guaranteed future loans, yet it won't increase oil production to help us out.

Ever heard of Kuwait, or Saudi Arabia? How much did the U.S. taxpayer pay to pull the Kuwaitis' bacon out of the fire? How much do we spend to protect Saudi Arabia? Neither of them is rushing to help their U.S. taxpayer benefactors, are they?

Ever heard of the World Trade Organization? That's the outfit that is going to police world trade, and prevent the kind of blackmail being perpetrated against the United States with this oil situation. Have you heard from it yet? Don't hold your breath waiting.

We need to lift the sanctions on Iraq, pull all of our troops out of the area, and stop selling the most sophisticated military equipment in the world to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

We need to stop the unlimited, unrestricted and unreciprocated flow of Chinese goods into this country. If they are to be our most formidable and dangerous future enemy, why are we funding their military buildup? Mr. Clinton says that, in five years, China will open its market to us. China is a poor country. What does America sell that the Chinese need, or can afford? We export mainly technology. How much of that can a poor Chinese worker buy? If we want to stem the trade deficit, we must return to producing consumer goods in this country again. It's that simple.

Trade unions, although once a necessity in the era of the sweatshop, have priced the American worker out of the job market. This needs to be addressed.

Remember, Chinese tools; Japanese cars, steel, cameras, televisions and stereos; Indonesian clothes and shoes; Indian brass; Argentine beef; French cookware; and British wool all add to our trade deficit. Those countries do not reciprocate and are not totally open as our markets are.

When are the American taxpayers going to wake up and demand results, not promises from our government? In five years, China might decide not to accept American goods and aim American-funded nuclear missiles at our citizens.

Pat Buchanan isn't advocating isolationism, but a fair market system and a world that must stop sponging off of American generosity and benevolence.

ROBERT L. DI STEFANO

Abingdon, Md.

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