LETTER: President should focus on green jobs

Monday, November 10, 2008 | 12:43 p.m. CST

An open letter to President-elect Obama:

I’m writing to support your position on creating a massive program of green jobs as the best solution to the multiple, severe problems we face—unemployment, home foreclosures, global warming, and ruinous wars for oil. Please include Van Jones and Harvey Wasserman in your corps of advisers; their ideas about transforming our nation into part of the answer instead of part of the problem are practical and do-able.

Virtually all the threats to our survival are connected to global warming. Extracting, transporting and burning of fossil fuels, uranium mining and processing, and the unsolvable problem of radioactive nuclear waste can only be eliminated by replacing King CONG (coal, oil, nuclear, gas) with energy efficiency and genuinely clean, renewable energy generation. The latter will create “green jobs” that can’t be outsourced and that could be required to pay a living wage. Of course, our infrastructure is desperately in need of repair also, which also means good jobs in all states.

Giving taxpayers’ (borrowed) billions to banks has failed; they have used it to further enrich themselves, not to increase cash flow for productive businesses or provide fair mortgages for homeowners in trouble. These giveaways must be recouped by restoring progressive taxation, as you promised, and by nationalizing failed banks and/or strongly regulating them.

Please finance the green jobs program by taxing every stock transaction. This will produce billions of dollars while discouraging non-productive speculating and encouraging long-term investment.

I know you are under great pressure from the corporate interests that funded your campaign. But we, the people, are the ones who voted for you and gave you a mandate to serve the common good. We are now offering you our support in rebuilding America with a strong middle class that offers upward mobility to the poor. You are right; it is not about you; it is about what we can accomplish together.



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