Several facts in a recent Speak Out letter were not correct as stated.
First, on the glut of gas from the warmer winter, this statement is correct; however, this is natural gas, not refined gasoline. Natural gas prices are at an all-time low due to excess supply. Our problem is that we have refused as a country to embrace using our abundant supply of natural gas to power our trucks and cars. The good news is this is beginning to change.
Already, many industrial users are moving to use this fuel, like buses, garbage trucks and other fleet users that can centralize their fueling stations. Next should be the conversion of our trucking fleet as soon as the infrastructure is in place.
Second, the current inflation rate for the first three months of 2012 is 2.8 percent; and about half of that is due to the price of gasoline. In the last 10 years, the highest rate of inflation occurred in 2007 at 4.1 percent. You would have to go back to 1981 to find double-digit inflation. From 1974 through 1981, inflation was indeed a problem and was in double digits most of the time. It appears that high inflation occurs mostly when Republicans are in office. From 1974 to 1981, we had three Republicans and one Democrat in the Oval Office; in 2007, the highest year of inflation in the last 10 years, President Bush was in office.
Third, the current unemployment rate is somewhere between 8.0 percent and 8.5 percent. Of course, many will argue that the actual rate may be higher due to people “dropping out of the job market.” However, I would argue that there is never an excuse to drop out of the job market. There are many jobs not filled every day due to insufficient or incorrect job skills.
How about we stick to the facts and not just what is fed to us by one news agency or another. Problems cannot be properly addressed and corrected without an understanding of our problems. America is not now or never will be on the road to socialism; that last fact is just not correct.
Mark D. Voorhest