Too Early To Jump On Obama for Econ Woes

I was greatly surprised by the recent editorial “Conflicting Obama Political Priorities Lead to Paralysis”. The writer of this contradictory editorial is obviously caught up in media-stoked emotion of partisan politics.

Unfortunately, the several issues mentioned in this editorial are directly inter-related and linked to the economy. Any engineer worth his salt understands that our current economic problems cannot be adequately addressed without a comprehensive solution dealing with each of those issues.

The previous and current administrations had no option but to prop up the large financial services companies, after seeing the consequences of letting Lehman Brothers fail. A healthy banking and financial services sector underpins our economy.

Health-care costs, if not controlled, will overwhelm our economy within 30 years. Anybody who has served in a management capacity in any organization with paid employees, from engineering and construction companies to nonprofit management boards, has seen firsthand the financial difficulties posed by rapidly escalating medical insurance costs. The economic advantage given to our foreign competition by not having to shoulder these health-care costs is one reason they are eating our lunch and buying up our best talent.

Several years ago I attended a technical presentation given by engineers and scientists within my former company who had modeled potential future ocean levels caused by warming of the earth. The overwhelming preponderance of engineers and scientists worldwide are in agreement on global warming.

If you question the economic and human impact of rising ocean levels, take a look at New Orleans. We also knew we had a problem there with defective dikes but chose not to address it. Choosing to ignore the looming impact of climate change is like choosing to ignore Hitler’s invasion of Poland. The direct effect on us today may not be obvious, but it will soon become unavoidable and take everything we have to resolve.

The economic impact of the past eight years of war strategy and funding can hardly be blamed on the current nine-month-old administration. With several hundred thousand troops deployed, we don’t have the option of setting this priority aside.

Each issue mentioned in this editorial must be addressed to improve the long-term economic health of our country. We are fortunate to now have responsible leadership which appears to understand the interdependence of complicated problems and the fortitude to look beyond the next election cycle.

David L. Elwyn, P.E.
King Ferry, N.Y.