Crucial billIt seems that the U.S. Congress is one vote...

the Forumn

April 27, 1994

Crucial bill

It seems that the U.S. Congress is one vote away from abolishing our free enterprise system.

With the president's blessing, a bill disallowing the permanent replacement of striking workers by management has passed the House and is now one vote away from 60, the number of senators needed to overcome a possible Republican filibuster.

The law that permitted such replacement has been in existence since 1948. It is the foundation of free enterprise and a free labor market.

Those who oppose it, socialists and communists, seek to move the control of assets from corporate shareholders to the workers.

Unions, under the circumstance of the proposed law, would then move into each workplace with the guarantee that, if you join, you may strike without fear of consequence.

The power of industry unions would multiply geometrically, as would inflation, under such a new incendiary law.

At the same time, over a period of years, thousands of workers would be permanently laid off as businesses considered each worker a potential liability.

Corporations, particularly those with debt payments to make, would be unable to meet marketplace pricing pressures and would be the first to disappear.

Ultimately, the federal government would control the profitability of industry in general as federal arbitrators decided what workers get paid and what is appropriate corporate profit.

Neither Congress nor the Clintons are aware, it seems, that they are holding a requiem for the once lusty stock market.

Three-quarters of American families have their futures invested in the stock and bond markets, in pensions, IRAs, Keoghs or personal funds.

How much will be lost in the on-going market chaos until the Senate Republicans attempt to stop this reckless legislation no one can say.

When we mistakenly elect socialists and communists we get what we deserve for our ignorance. One man among the Senate Republican minority can cast a vote to Sovietize the U.S.

Tyranny by stealth. Who would have ever thought?

Richard Frank

Baltimore

Interest rates

The Federal Reserve Board announced the third quarter-point federal funds interest rate hike of 1994, bringing the total increase to 25 percent from January 1994.

Like the two previous hikes, this will ripple through public and private financial instruments and affect government budgets, our nation's debt, business loans, mortgage loans and consumer purchases. It will raise both the real inflation and the expectation of inflation.

All this is a replay of how we got into the last recession, which began in 1988 and didn't become apparent to the layman until it could no longer be denied.

The Fed used every excuse in the book to explain, intentionally, in esoteric terms, understood by the select few, to Congress repeatedly that they couldn't understand why the economy was in decline and even blamed the recession on everything including the gulf war.

I think it's high time we stop giving them our blessings for our financial woes and ask why an agency of the government was allowed to evolve into a governing force that is not accountable to the people and that exercises dictatorial powers.

Vincent A. Henderson

Towson

Evil need not win

The Other Voices page of April 11 carried a review by Fay Lande of my book, "Ordinary People and Extraordinary Evil." It was headlined, "The folks who killed millions of Jews -- were they like us?"

The review was very thoughtful and serious. I am, indeed, grateful to Fay Lande and to The Evening Sun.

I should like to make one correction, though. The article says that I am now a professor of sociology at University of Maryland Baltimore County. I am sorry to say, this is an error.

I currently teach a course on the Holocaust at UMBC. I have been a professor of sociology at the State University of New York at Buffalo, at the University of Missouri and at Tel Aviv University, but never at UMBC.

While I have your attention: My book is optimistic. I am convinced -- despite the latest horrors in Rwanda -- that we do not need to remain victims of evil forever.

Fred E. Katz

Baltimore

Neutrality in Bosnia is murder

President Clinton has spun around so many times when confronted by international conflict that historians may dub him "Pinwheel Willy."

Candidate Clinton's strong, clear and reasoned foreign policy positions are in stark contrast to his vacillation and equivocation as president.

Examples involve China, Haiti and Bosnia, among others, and the results have been tragic.

Haitians attempting to escape political persecution are now being returned, often to their death, after Bill Clinton explicitly condemned such actions.

And a band of hooligans on a Port-au-Prince dock caused President Clinton to reverse himself and order the U.S. Navy to turn tail.

For two years the Serbs have consistently shown themselves to be liars, murderers, rapists and unabashedly committed to ethnic cleansing. They invaded a sovereign nation recognized by both the U.S. and the U.N.

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