- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Global warming questions

Marlo Lewis Jr.’s “Unaffordable agenda” (Commentary, Saturday) points out the unaffordable costs associated with fighting global warming, as that warming scenario is described by former Vice President Al Gore.

But the Gore scenario, currently popular with those seeking government funds to study or fight it, as well as those enthralled with the prospect of more centralized government control, is itself questionable. Global warming has been recurring every 1,500 years (give or take 500) for at least the last one million years, according to S. Fred Singer and Dennis T. Avery in their book “Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years.”

While modern man is likely having some impact on our environment, including the climate, it remains to be determined how much, if any, of the current warming period will be caused by us and how much is brought on by unstoppable Mother Nature.



Unsung heroes

Karen Bune’s letter recognizing the heroism of the Rosenbaum family in seeking reforms in the city’s emergency response system as a condition for settling their lawsuit is right on target (“The Rosenbaums,” Saturday). David Rosenbaum’s family is to be commended for its public-spirited decision. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty has the heart and head to make the necessary changes happen.

While unusual, the Rosenbaums’ concern and sacrifice for the public interest is not unique. Over the years, I have had the privilege of representing a number of families who suffered catastrophic effects of malpractice who unselfishly served the public interest with the settlement or verdicts in their lawsuits.

On occasion, they have insisted upon and obtained changes in hospital safety rules as part of their settlement. In one case, a portion of the settlement money was set aside to finance an annual seminar at the defendant hospital on the safe use of certain medical equipment. Two families spent substantial sums from their lawsuit awards to establish schools — one national and one local — to train therapists and treat and care for disabled children.

Secrecy as a condition of settlement is the dirty little secret of malpractice litigation. I have had some clients with the courage and economic ability to resist demands of secrecy as a condition of settlement. They would not let what happened to them and their children be swept under the rug and forgotten. Recently, thank goodness, the D.C. Bar declared it unethical and a disciplinary offense for a lawyer to be a party to such secret agreements.

We need to recognize we have many unsung heroes among us.

In addition to seeking compensation necessary to care for themselves and their families, some victims of negligence or malpractice do what they can, through their lawsuits, to improve medical and rescue services and prevent tragic reoccurrences. Our best wishes and encouragement should go out to the Rosenbaum family and Mr. Fenty.



An inconvenient lie

It is not a surprise that Al Gore would be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, to go along with the staged Oscar Mr. Gore was conveniently awarded by Hollywood, to promote Mr. Gore’s book on global warming (“A rather ordinary Nobel,” Editorial, Saturday).

The two Norwegian parlimentarians who nominated Mr. Gore most likely supported awarding the Nobel to Jimmy Carter, along with Yasser Arafat. Mr. Carter’s prize was primarily given as an affront to President Bush.


Palm Desert, Calif.

Open-border panderers

In attempting to heat up so-called bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform — amnesty for innumerable illegal aliens, now estimated at 12 million to 30 million, and huge pie-in-the-sky visa increases — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, along with the Bush administration and congressional Democrats are busy hashing leftovers (“McConnell eyes ‘bipartisan’ illegals bill,” Page 1, March 19).

Like the imperceptive cook who tries to disguise unpalatable food by mixing it into another indigestible dish, these legislators du jour are apparently unaware the diners — Americans who by overwhelming majority, according to a Center for Immigration Studies survey, oppose all forced population increases — have already left the table, and refuse to pay the bill.

Unbelievably, even laughably, these open-border caterers continue to claim that serving commerce, illegal aliens and foreign guest workers a never-ending banquet funded by taxpaying American workers — rather than applying attrition through interior, workplace and border enforcement for all — will end their illicit immigration gravy train.

Far from seeing Mr. McConnell and friends’ ham-handed approach as the right thing to do, Americans — particularly the more than 25 million citizens who are unemployed — are more likely to view it as that stale old “a-for-amnesty” fish wrap we threw away yesterday.


Lafayette, Calif.

India’s promising future

“The tilt toward India” by James D. Zirin (Commentary, Friday) has focused on the U.S. perception of India, especially from an economic viewpoint. Actually, it is a good read.

Mr. Zirin may be a legal eagle, but he incorrectly puts India’s per capita income at $460.

The Economist, in its annual publication “The World in 2007,” estimates India’s per capita income at $830 (page 107) and as per PPP (purchasing power parity, i.e. relative value of currency’s purchasing power) it is equivalent to $4,190, which is perhaps more important for valid comparison of living standards.

I agree with Mr Zirin that India will eventually reach its goal after many “stops.” In India, everything is possible and impossible at the same time.

However, considering the fact that India is the most complex functioning federal democracy of more than 1 billion people with many religions, languages and political requirements in a difficult neighborhood, most neutral observers actually give it credit for its achievements. As per international Investment Banks and Management consultants, India is likely to grow at about 8 percent annually on average for at least the next 10 years.

India’s brainpower and free democratic society will ensure that it will become a significant power, of course, with delays. The United States should know, as it, more than any other country, has gained from hundreds of thousands of scientists, mathematicians, IT engineers and other skilled personnel from India. So has India, as it is a mutually beneficial relationship.

In conformity with U.S. strategic objectives, India can ensure that China is not the only power in Asia. To some extent, it would depend on the U.S. policies in the region, especially in relation to China and Pakistan. Free, democratic India is trying to be a good friend to the United States, but its DNA would ensure its political independence.



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