October 14, 2019

Letters: Global Warming and Politics, Cartoonist and the Mueller Report

Global Warming and Politics
Thanks so much for covering the good news about bipartisan legislation to curb global warming! (“When Parties Unite for Our Planet,” April 5)

Yes, there is a bipartisan undercurrent in Congress. And that includes another global warming buster on the horizon: HR 763, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, introduced into the House of Representatives by Republican Francis Rooney and Democrat Ted Deutch, both of south Florida. Its co-sponsors include Southern Californians Adam Schiff, Judy Chu, Harley Rouda, Gil Cisneros and Mike Levin.

HR763 is a revenue neutral carbon tax. It pleases liberals and conservatives because it uses the power of the market to cut greenhouse gas emissions quickly and sharply, while protecting low-income families with a monthly dividend. It will also create jobs, propelling our energy economy into the 21st century.

Don’t forget: The Nobel Prize for Economics in 2018 went to William Nordhaus — for his research on the carbon tax.

HR 763 can drive down America’s carbon pollution to help bring climate change under control — which the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says we have to do in the next 12 years to avoid out-of-control catastrophe, including an even worse refugee crisis.

Fellow Journal readers: perform a mitzvah. Write or call your member of Congress and say you support bipartisan action, such as HR 763, on climate change. They’re listening more than you might think.
Kathy Shenkin Seal, Santa Monica

Any bipartisan action these days lifts my spirits, especially when the legislation addresses climate change. 

That’s why I’m excited about HR 763, a revenue-neutral carbon tax. Despite its cumbersome title, the legislation is bipartisan, efficient and elegant. It will reduce fossil fuel emissions 40% in the first 12 years, create 2 million new jobs, save thousands of lives by reducing pollution, and because it is revenue neutral, it will not grow government.

The bill has wide support — 15 former chairs of the Council of Economic Advisers, all four living former Federal Reserve chairs and 27 Nobel laureates — including Alan Greenspan, Martin Feldstein, Lawrence Summers and Rep. Ted Deutch — Jewish leaders from the right and left.

If you want to see the Republicans and Democrats do something powerful together to address climate change, ask your member of Congress to co-sponsor HR 763.
Davia Rivka, Los Angeles

Missing Ingredients?
As someone who baked challah for years and then didn’t, when I returned to doing it, I seemed to have lost my touch. So I eagerly read Debra Eckerling’s column (“Jewish Bucket List Item No. 3: Baking Challah,” April 5). Oh my, Debra. Where were the quantities and whatever happened to the eggs?
Lynn Cohen, Agoura Hills 

A Great Edition
Thanks very much for your article remembering Jake Farber (“Businessman, Philanthropist Jake Farber, 94,” April 5). He was a mensch from a beautiful family that we knew at Adat Ari El. Congratulations to Mishkon Tephilo on its 100th anniversary (“Temple Mishkon Tephilo Celebrates 100 Years of Life in Venice,” April 5). Ours will be in four years in Highland Park. And a chag Pesach sameach to the Southern California Jewish community.
Cantor Ken Rothstein, Temple Beth Israel of Highland Park and Eagle Rock

Trump Calls Adam Schiff ‘Pencil Neck’
Rep. Adam Schiff may have a thin neck but at least it’s connected to a strong backbone.
Steven Schuelein, via email

Cartoonist and the Mueller Report
I am writing in regard to Marshall Lerner’s letter to the editor (Your Turn, April 5).

I have found Steve Greenberg’s cartoons, while sometimes left-leaning, at least even-handed enough to spare nobody in power. True, he, like many cartoonists and journalists, is particularly harsh on President Donald Trump. Blame Greenberg, and most of the media, if you like, rather than admit that there is something more profoundly wrong with the current president than the usual corruption of presidents past. But in your zeal, you asked for a cartoonist to graphically retract his own opinion, said opinion being a visual metaphor. Do you not see the overreach?

I don’t mean to pick on your letter in particular, but rather to characterize it as an alarming effect of a sitting president constantly and brutally attacking the media in his self-interest. I also want to point out the irony of many voices on the right, especially now, calling for the mainstream media to admit that even insinuating Trump or his campaign improperly associated with Russia was a horrible mistake. For, in its rush to sensationalize and cash in on a hand-picked attorney general’s summary of Robert Mueller’s report, the mainstream media, at least initially, overcame its own left-leaning bias, its anti-Trump bias, and, to some degree, its dedication to press for the truth.

Mueller team members now leak that the report is far more damaging than the summary lets on. This should surprise nobody. There are no easy answers here, whether you are on the right or the left. Accusations will continue to fly on both sides. And if we value what this country stands for, we need to accept that.
Michael Feldman, Los Angeles

Poison Politics Hurts Country
Thanks for Judy Gruen’s “Politics Claims Another Friendship” (March 29). After President Donald Trump’s election, Democrats tried to assume the moral high ground, but their unhinged demonization of Trump, his family and supporters has only hurt their party and the country. Gruen correctly observes that leftists are themselves guilty of many of the sins they blame on conservatives. Maybe now that blatant anti-Semitism has emerged in the Democratic Party, and the “Russian collusion” accusation has collapsed, they’ll take a good, hard look at the damage progressives have done to their party. And hopefully, Jewish liberals, whose Trump-hatred alienated them from our Israeli cousins, will begin
to understand why Israel appreciates Trump’s crucial, heartfelt support.

A letter in the same edition headed, “College Admissions Cheating,” submitted by a man who’s been consistently critical of Trump, demands justice for those unfairly incarcerated. Trump recently signed a prison reform bill, passed largely by the efforts of his son-in-law Jared Kushner, meant to do just that. Thousands of inmates, mostly minorities, were freed by Trump, and many expressed deep gratitude as they celebrated at the White House last week. I wonder if the letter-writer joins Democrat Van Jones in praising Trump for this important and humane act?

America has many problems that can be solved only when Democrats stop cursing Trump, and start working with him. And maybe then they can be friends with conservatives again.
Rueben Gordon, via email

Will Congress Allow the Internet to Be Taken Over?
I am writing to you because I want to protect our open internet. Two years ago, the FCC under Ajit Pai, repealed the Net Neutrality protections that make the internet an open and free platform to connect and exchange ideas. If we can’t restore these protections, the internet as we know it could change forever.
Earlier this month, Congress introduced the Save the Internet Act, which will restore the open internet protections that were repealed by the FCC in 2017. Despite having the support of more than 80% of Americans, many members of Congress are siding with Big Telecom to vote against this bill. I hope our representatives in Congress vote in favor of this bill. Otherwise we’ll be forced to hold them accountable at the ballot box in 2020.
Marlin Damero

Now it’s your turn. Don’t be shy, submit your letter to the editor. Letters should be no more than 200 words and must include a valid name and city. The Journal reserves the right to edit all letters. letters@jewishjournal.com.