Online Edition Bonus Dialogue
trol over our lives when we can use our own mon agricultural practices designed to rid
creativity and initiative to try and make our food products of deadly pests, such as pas-
livesbetter? teurization and sterilization of animal
Greg Hood, Naples, Florida manure prior to its application as fertilizer.
This is a problem, since there are data to sug-
In response to the March Debate, gest that some deadly forms of bacteria can-
“Should the government help not be washed off food products, like lettuce,
people upgrade their TVs to once they are growing there. Second, for sim-
receive digital signals?” ilar reasons, there is a higher incidence of
fungi in organic produce. Some of these
NO. It is not within the government’s fungi have been known to produce toxins and
purview to help upgrade a television set. No have been linked to neurological problems.
one asks the federal (or state) government to Third, certified organic does not mean
Debate goes on upgrade their car’s brakes or their home’s that no pesticides are used, it just means that
heating system, and these are more impor- no regulated pesticides are used. So, unregu-
tant parts of one’s existence than television. lated pesticides are used in sometimes copi-
Luis Cabassa, Falls Village, Connecticut ous amounts. Regulated pesticides have been
extensively tested for safe limits and their
Yes. It is the responsibility of our govern- effects on animals and humans. Unregulated
YES. Of course oil companies should pay a ment in its role of encouraging and regulat- pesticides have not been subjected to this rig-
windfall tax on the outrageous gains they ing interstate commerce to manage the orous testing.
have made, as the rest of us struggle to pay for assignment of various parts of the electro- I am aware everyone wants to jump on
fuel for our cars and homes. They have made magnetic spectrum to various uses as set by the organic food bandwagon. Initially, it
a killing off the rest of us, with relatively low congress and it assigns this task to the Federal sounds like a great idea: We all want to be
payment for taxes or for the services that Trade Commission. healthier. But I think people should be aware
make their deliveries possible—roads, rail- Part and parcel of this responsibility is to of potential dangers and make calculated
roads, police, fire and other infrastructure. establish standards and protocols for each decisions about their food. In addition to
Merry Selk, Albany, California broadcast band so that broadcast and receiv- being more costly, organic produce is not
ing equipment can be produced and pur- always the healthiest choice.
In response to the February
Debate, “Should oil companies
pay a windfall profit tax?”
NO. Oil companies should not pay windfall chased with some assurance that it will not Karen McGinnis, Ph.D. , via e-mail
taxes for a multitude of reasons, the biggest suddenly be made obsolete by some new
being it would raise the price of gas and technological standard. That is, for example, Credit when due
lessen the amount of money companies whyanalogbroadcastingstillsupportsblack- Last year I left behind my cane when I
would have to explore for new reserves. and-white transmission/reception: legacy shopped in your Long Island City, Queens
Higher taxes are oppressive and do not compatibility. This new digital standard will [warehouse]. I returned, and, lo and behold,
increase government revenues since eco- not support legacy compatibility! there sits my cane waiting for me.
nomic growth is slowed by higher taxes. Charles Dabney Jr., Eugene, Oregon Since then I have changed to a rolling
As for swimming in cash, which your walker. No, I have not lost it as yet. But this
expert David Sirota feels is a primary reason to level taxes, [that would be] purely out of Odds and ends morning I did go shopping at the same place, and what do you think happened? I lost my
envy and spite. Oil companies provide jobs graduation ring. I could not find it anywhere.
for thousands and products all of us use Organic backlash for one As a last resort I called Costco, and what hap-everyday. Is this not giving back enough In your January issue of The Costco pened? The ring is in the manager’s office
already? Connection, Pat Volchok starts her article waitingtobepicked up.
How about the already trillions of dollars entitled “Going the organic way” with the John Dunas, Woodside, New York
they pay in other taxes? Having deep pockets question “What’s not to like about organic
is not a viable reason to punish companies veg etables?” Of course, she proceeds to pro-with high taxation. Companies provide jobs, claim that there is nothing wrong, and extols
salaries, economic growth, and products and their virtues. She, and your readers,
services to communities they locate in. should be aware of a few things about
It is not the role of government or private organic vegetables.
enterprise to shelter everyone from a chal- First, many organic farmers are
lenging and sometimes hostile world. My opposed to some of the com-wife and I own our own business, pay our
bills on time and do not expect a handout
from anyone, nor do we believe businesses
should be punished for being successful. It is
not big profitable companies people should
fear and loathe, it is big government regulat-ing and manipulating in so many areas of our
lives. Why give the government so much con-
LINDA HOLT AYRISS/ARTVILLE
The Costco Connection APRIL 2006