Benson responds

I am writing with some comments about Tuesday's editorial concerning the College of Charleston.

In my interview with your reporter, Diane Knich, I never suggested the college should increase its undergraduate enrollment in the Historic District. Further, I did not criticize or complain about our neighbors in Charleston, who contribute in many ways to the high quality of life experienced by the college's faculty, staff, and students.

I was simply pointing out that unlike any other major public university in this state, because of our location, the college is not in a position to generate new revenue by increasing enrollment. That is not a complaint about our neighbors. That is a fact. I have consistently supported our self-imposed guideline of enrolling only about 10,000 undergraduate students.

Indeed, I will soon be purchasing a home on the Charleston peninsula and will become one of the college's neighbors.

Your editorial recognized an important fact: Greater state financial support is needed to improve the quality and affordability of our public universities in South Carolina. In fact, of all 121 public universities in the country that are roughly the college's size, we receive the lowest state appropriation per student.

Fortunately, many of our legislators are recognizing the important link between higher education and economic development, which is a very positive sign for the future of South Carolina.

P. George Benson

President

College of Charleston

George Street

Charleston

Tragic blunder

Has anyone but me thought of how much better the poor souls of Iraq would be if we hadn't invaded their country to fight a war based on misinformation?

Hundreds of thousands of innocent people would be alive. The war provided a training ground for terrorists and they have caused a lot of what's happening around the Middle East.

Robert Forbes

Tasker Drive

Summerville

Hurting America

At the time of the fall of the Soviet Union I read an article that asked where all of the communists in the United States had gone. The author suggested that these anti-capitalists had moved to the environmental movement.

I considered that might be hyperbole. But then I learned that there has not been an oil refinery constructed in the United States since 1976 in Garyville, La., largely because lawsuits filed by environmental groups have stopped or impeded the construction.

The Obama push on new climate change proposals puts everything in focus. The administration uses data that agree with their position while discounting data that don't.

The facts are that greenhouse gases have declined in the United States by over 16 percent since 2000. The Earth's temperature has "flatlined" over the last 15 years and has only risen 1.53 degrees Fahrenheit in the last 100 years. The United States contributes only 4 percent to the Earth's emissions, and yet the administration is willing to risk destroying our economy to reduce it. Climate change is cyclical, and anyone with a modicum of common sense knows that.

Consider also the destruction of the coal industry, the fight against energy exploration in the United States, opposition to the Keystone Pipeline and the California water project, which diverts billions of gallons of water from fertile farmland to the Pacific to protect the Delta Smelt. Environmentalists have put a bull's eye on major parts of our economy and hundreds of thousands of jobs that could be created. They are missing opportunities to lower the cost of energy, food, etc. And if we were energy independent, we could cut the lines to outside suppliers and spend those billions of dollars in the United States instead of propping up people who hate us.

This country deserves better than to be controlled by anti-Americans who do everything in their power to damage our way of life and our ability to prosper.

Fudgy Brabham

Marina Drive

Daniel Island

Go figure

Drink three beers and get stopped, you go to jail.

Texting and going all over the road - you get a $40 ticket.

Lenny Branch

Jasper Boulevard

Sullivan's Island

It's about greed

A June 3 letter to the editor "We can, too" lamented Peter Morici's commentary, "Micromanaging climate won't work."

I agree, in part, with the letter writer; however, America is no longer the America of the Greatest Generation. Fewer than 1 percent of Americans have served their country.

In fact, I believe our Greatest Generation would be ashamed of us had they known we would devolve into what we have become. And good luck getting China's 1.3 billion people to follow our lead. They are eating our lunch. India's 1.1 billion people have their own problems. Mexico discharges waste right into the ocean.

Since World War II, only George H.W. Bush has led us to the successful conclusion of a war. And we didn't re-elect him. Bill Clinton gave us a balanced budget, and we've decimated that fiscal legacy.

It is true that National Geographic can prove - through photography - the depletion of ice in some parts of the world, but that doesn't mean America's leadership could change that. Nor do America's multi-national firms give a hoot about America's economy or global warming.

There is a huge difference between the Greatest Generation and the America that exists 70 years later. We have a global economy. We are not an Industrial Age nation but an Information Technology world with over 1,600 billionaires in America alone.

But many citizens can't play the IT "game". Over 90 million Americans are out of work, off the books, under-employed or "out-to pasture" before their time.

Wall Street is not Main Street and never has been.

Wall Street and the global economy care about one thing only - money. Remember, "greed is good." As my Ph.D. daughter says, "Welcome to the new normal."

Trust is gone.

David Engelman

Julia Street

James Island

Gator dangers

I'm confused. People get upset if a very large alligator is euthanized when it is possibly sick or in a location dangerous to humans. But they also get upset if it's relocated.

This is a highly dangerous animal that can move with blinding speed. It kills pets like dogs and cats, sometimes in front of their owners. It could easily kill or maim humans.

Obviously, this is a no-win situation. Why don't we all leave it up to the experts and stay out of it?

Jean Moeller

Forest Oaks Drive

Hollywood

Too many people

A letter was published in the paper a few weeks ago about Mount Pleasant being ruined by overdevelopment. There were too many people in the village, and the neighborhood was being ruined. The author moved here four years ago.

Then a June 15 letter to the editor written by a woman who moved here four years ago said James Island has been ruined by overdevelopment and Johns Island is being ruined. Do they not understand that people moving here cause development? Could it be that they are part of the problem?

Wayne Wicker

North Hermitage Road

Beaufort

Cut off aid to Iraq

Iraq, shame on you. We freed you from tyranny and a brutal dictator, and now you are heading toward the abyss of civil war.

It appears that Sunnis and Shiites have two versions of the Koran that they abide by. We know civil war leads a country into bitterness and takes many years to heal.

Let's work to get off Middle East oil and worry about the welfare of the only nation currently worth saving, Israel. Please stop aid and let them hate us for free.

Robert Lane

Knottingham Drive

Goose Creek