- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 22, 2001

Tyson's game of chicken

In response to Jerry Seper's article ("Tyson Foods indicted in smuggling," Dec. 20.), considering the actual impact on our social, physical and natural infrastructures of the millions of illegal aliens in our nation, we might save money if we eat fillet mignon instead of chicken.
Tyson isn't alone in this practice of importing poor, willing, compliant workers from Mexico; the company is just the largest and latest to be caught.
Grape harvesters, carpenters, plumbers, truck drivers, meat packers the list of work done by illegals spans the gamut from A to Z and does include work that Americans will do, want to do, need to do, but not at slave wages and in unsafe conditions.
We all pay the price in our overcrowded schools and hospitals, while Tyson wannabes, and those as yet uncaught in the underworld economy of low wages and abusive conditions, flourish.
We're choking on the hidden costs of this "cheap" food.

BARBARA VICKROY
Escondido, Calif.

The great Lynx hoax

I commend The Washington Times for its coverage of radical environmentalists in the government ("Rare lynx hairs found in forests exposed as hoax," Dec. 17).
Stories about activist government employees who have no compunction about altering research findings to further their radical agendas are legend here in the West.
The expansion of endangered habitat is a key element of the environmentalist agenda and has resulted in catastrophic economic and cultural degradation in rural communities throughout our state and others in the West.
The public has a right and a need to know the names of the offenders in this case.
And Congress and state legislatures must open broad investigations into all similar "scientific" findings upon which endangered listings and habitat designations have been based.
We must assume, in light of the attempted fraud that was perpetrated against resource users and their communities in Washington state, that all federal and state environmental research has been subject to the same devious tinkering by government employees who have a radical agenda or who desire to expand their agencies' authority.

CHUCK STOCKS
Albuquerque, N.M.Thank you for doing the research and exposing the false data used by the Forest Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service ("Rare lynx hairs found in forests exposed as hoax," Dec. 17). I believe this is a very small part of what is happening in our agencies with the use of bad science and false data. America is being destroyed by what they are doing.
I hope The Washington Times will continue to report on this and other similar cases you might uncover. One of my questions is: Did the Center for Biological Diversity have any involvement in any of this?

RACHEL THOMAS
Huachuca City, Ariz.What a great article and how long overdue ("Rare lynx hairs found in forests exposed as hoax," Dec. 17).
I'm convinced that this is just the tip of the iceberg of conspiracy employed by "eco-extremists" within the land management agencies to distort and skew the "science" that they use to justify "no-entry" and "nonmanagement" policies.
We had a similar incident in South Central Oregon a few years ago that involved the planting of phony wolverine sign; you might find articles in the archives of the Klamath Falls Herald & News or other regional papers.
Keep digging. I'm sure there are tons more of such incidents of intentional distortion.

C.H. McMILLAN
Klamath Falls, Ore.I wish to express my appreciation for the publishing of Audrey Hudson's Dec. 17 story, "Rare lynx hairs found in forests exposed as hoax." These types of occurrences appear to have been going on for quite some time, and I sincerely hope you will continue to follow up and keep the public informed as to what is really going on with our Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service.
These types of acts need to be exposed for what they are.

MEL WOL
Loveland, Colo.

'Let sleeping sediments lie'

On Dec. 4, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christie Whitman chose to go ahead with a Clinton administration plan and ordered General Electric to dredge or pay for the dredging of 40 miles of the upper Hudson River at an estimated cost of half a billion dollars ("Dredging up more junk science," Dec.6. The purpose of the dredging is to remove about 2.65 million cubic yards of sediment containing PCBs that has been benignly buried for a generation.
The problem is that The PCBs were legally discharged, under the authority of both federal and state permits, into the northern Hudson River from factories in Fort Edward and Hudson Falls until 1977, when the substances were banned by the federal government despite there being no scientifically established evidence that PCBs are a probable human carcinogen or that they cause any sort of human malady.
In a March 1999 peer-reviewed study, the largest ever study of occupational exposure to toxic PCB chemicals, involving more than 7,000 men and women who worked from 1946 to 1976 in these two GE factories, published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Dr. Renate Kimbrough and Martha Doemland, an epidemiologist with the Institute for Evaluating Health Risks, found no association between actual exposure to PCBs and death from cancer or other diseases. The March 1999 issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine published a peer-reviewed study of 7,000 men and women who worked from 1946 to 1976 at these two GE factories (the largest ever study of occupational exposure to toxic PCB chemicals). In it, Dr. Renate Kimbrough and epidemiologist Martha Doemland found no association between exposure to PCBs and death from cancer or other diseases.
They actually found that, despite workers having PCB levels in their blood as high as several thousand parts per billion (ppb), compared to average levels in the general population of from 4 ppb to 8 ppb, they were actually less likely to die from cancer than expected in a statistically similar sample.
The study's lead author, Dr. Kimbrough, says "there was no association between PCB exposure and deaths from cancer or any other disease, including heart attacks and strokes" and that these findings were "consistent with the finds not "findings" of four other earlier studies conducted by other researchers of workers in the same plants."
As in the case of asbestos, the removal operation may prove more harmful than just leaving the stuff where it is. The EPA should let sleeping sediments lie.

DANIEL JOHN SOBIESKI
Chicago

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