Terry Munson’s recent letter hit several nails squarely on the head. The oil industry’s claims of improved safety can be laid to rest by the April 7 story (“True scope of oil leak surfaces”), which describes a continuous leak in the Gulf of Mexico that was triggered by an underwater mud slide in 2004. Because the drilling platform and 28 wells were buried in sediment, this leak of up to a million gallons so far cannot be stopped. Now the fossil fuel industry is pressing to extract oil and gas wherever it can, including our protected wilderness areas and fragile coastlines.

Oil company officials know that the future of fossil fuels is dim due to the facts of climate change. We are suffering the damages already from the heat-trapping gases we expel into our atmosphere. There will have to be a reckoning. If you don’t believe it, ask any insurance company.

Munson’s comments on the anti-tax mania also struck a chord. The reflexive pledge to veto any new taxes, no matter what they’re needed for, is akin to an anorexic thinking she’ll be healthier for refusing to eat. Skin and bones are what you get: a government that cannot fix anything for lack of funds.

To make matters worse, conservatives like Sen. Lindsey Graham want to divert even more of our national revenue to the military. The military already consumes a whopping percentage of our federal budget, while only 3 percent goes to energy and environment, 2.5 percent to science, and 1 percent to food and agriculture.

This lopsided budget calls for a redistribution of wealth to permit some badly needed nation building at home.

Carol Jules

Wexford Sound Drive

Charleston