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Letter From America

In our very first Letter from America 2 years ago we asserted that petrol in the US was “heading toward $4 a US gallon” – a price that was reached in the UK about 10 years ago, and triple what prices were in the US just 6 years ago.


It is now almost there – with $4 common in the San Francisco Bay area (we paid $3.89 today). The problem for America is that decades of cheap petrol, fuel oil, natural gas, and electricity have shaped a society that simply isn’t geared for expensive energy. On top of the housing crisis with increasing foreclosures of homes (typically in the distant suburbs), this is motivating even the Republicans to join the Democrats to vote for higher fuel economy standards and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Also, 2 years ago, we discussed Seymour Hersh’s report of Rummy’s plans for the invasion of Iran. While this did not come to pass, Bush continues to leave all options on the table (except for diplomacy) with regard to Iran, and speaking in front of the Israeli Knesset, he accused the Democrats of being terrorist appeasers for their willingness to negotiate with Iran. Then taking advantage of the “special relationship,” he illustrated his point by citing Prime Minister Chamberlain’s “general policy of appeasement” towards Hitler. Thankfully, Barack Obama responded by asserting his commitment to international diplomacy and stating further that he will go beyond fi ghting the terrorists behind 9/11 and “worry about nuclear proliferation and reduce nuclear stockpiles.”


Joe Falcone and Karri Kaiser
Community Activists from Half Moon Bay, California