Excellent job by safety board

Bravo to Chairman Deborah Hersman of the National Transportation Safety Board for her excellent communication and leadership following the recent airline crash at San Francisco International Airport.

Hersman displayed the degree of professionalism and system knowledge that we should expect from our top government employees.

Her performance was in sharp contrast to the fiasco we got from Michael Brown of FEMA back in 2005, following the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Brown was a political appointee under the George W. Bush administration. He never should have had the job. He proved to be an embarrassment to the Bush administration and to the American public.

In our blend of democracy and capitalism, we rely on quality on both sides. We expect the best to be at the top. Certainly, Hersman is an example of public service and governmental leadership at its best.

There is a continuing need for the best among us to consider working in the public sector for the public good. The future of our democracy depends on it.

George Fulmore

Concord

Must enact new rules quickly

We applaud President Barack Obama for pledging new regulations to control power plant carbon emissions and other important greenhouse gas production.


Advertisement

This is an emergency. Two years to start building necessary filtration systems would be way too long. From Science magazine: " ... 38 billion tons of CO2 ... needs to be cut sharply and promptly to avoid accelerating climate change."

Strong new rules must be adopted, unweakened by lobbyists' pleadings. Financing could be government supported. Utility CEOs are multimillionaires over and don't need exemptions or weakened regulations to survive.

Subsidies to build solar, wind and geothermal power plants might be increased radically. Worldwide reforestation seems a quick, cheap way to cut carbon in the air.

It's rational to say we must find humane ways to limit population growth worldwide and to limit increases in energy demands, especially in developed countries.

And above all, the right-wing dominated House or courts must not be permitted to interfere, as they doubtless will attempt to do. They lack perspective on the global warming problem.

Terry Cochrell

Berkeley

Dental care for needy is good news

So many poor and disabled persons in California are happy that Gov. Jerry Brown has reinstated full dental benefits.

It says in the Bible that when you help the poor, you will have a legacy. And, so, those hurt and poor people will bless the state for such goodness. I have heard so many bad stories that I am overjoyed with learning of this news.

Susan Cu Tikalsky

Brentwood

What recovering economy is that?

In a recent Times article, there was a bold but somewhat fishy article about the recent drop in gold prices and the ensuing stated recovery of the U.S. economy from the latest recession.

What recovery are we speaking about? Today's economy, where returning soldiers quickly find themselves in unemployment lines and the disabled among them wait a year or more for disability benefits? Where our largest, brightest corporations, such as Apple, offshore their tax burden and pay virtually no tax in the United States?

We're importing foreign workers and outsourcing many jobs. The unemployment rate's more than 7 percent and stagnating.

The Obama administration is a dismal failure at curing what ails America most, except for climate change and the wishy-washy Obamacare that's slowly but surely unraveling.

There's no mention of the $17 trillion debt and the all-but-disappearing debacle of the weakening U.S. dollar worldwide.

Again, something smells mighty fishy about the movement of gold and silver after the brightest economic minds bet their souls on the precious metals market.

The U.S. economy recovering? The secretive and elusive Obama administration at its bungling best?

I think I'll have Alaskan halibut for dinner.

Rich Dierdorff

Concord

Keystone pipeline is safer than rail

A Times July 8 article describes a horrible accident, in which a train of 73 oil tanker cars derailed and exploded, killing five people and destroying most of the town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec.

Let's hope the Keystone XL pipeline gets administration approval before the Canadians decide to ship some of that oil -- that we need -- by rail.

Andrew Murphy

Concord