Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters

Article excerpt

In Asia Crisis, Don't Forget Ecology

I read your editorial "Getting Japan Rolling" (March 4) and thought about the implications. You write, "More fuel, in the form of spending and tax measures, is needed" to get Japan's economy heated up again.

A staple in the repertory of devices to heat up the economy is public works spending. While not all publicly financed construction projects are bad, some are not only unneeded, but highly detrimental. You might try living here in the Japanese countryside and watch as it recedes day by day under the relentless pressure of make-work construction projects. I will readily admit that the mountain village where I live needs a sewage system - now finally under construction - to help keep the river clean. But we most decidedly do not need the construction companies that are destroying forest and habitat for the useless road in the mountains above us, nor do we need the dam that is planned for our river. Japan did not need the project that recently ruined the Isahaya Bay tidal flat, and it doesn't need any more roads. When Americans call on Japan to heat up its economy, they should keep in mind that they are indirectly demanding more such unnecessary and destructive projects. Something must be done to keep Asia's economy from going down the tubes, but it's time economists and politicians get together and come up with some fresh ideas. Economy and ecology shouldn't be enemies. Rick Davis Ashigawa, Japan Co-editor/publisher Japan Environment Monitor No one is above the law It is an apparent oversight, or possibly chosen ignorance, that two writers in the letters to the editor "Why the Public Ignores Washington" (March 2) totally ignore the real issue at hand. The issue is not that President Clinton may have had an affair with Monica Lewinsky; presidents in the past have done the same thing. The issue is the possibility that the president asked Ms. Lewinsky to lie, and that he possibly had his friend Vernon Jordan influence-peddle as part of a perjury/ bribe agreement with Lewinsky. …

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