Letters to the Editor

Big Oil, minimum wage, unions, etc.

Editorial doesn’t recognize oil’s king

Re “How long will this blue state let oil remain king?” (Editorials, Sept. 13): Oil is king, get over it. Rather than trying to rid the state and the planet of the fuel that creates wealth for all people, you should start suggesting ways to make its use better.

Rising seas are mentioned. The people the editorial board says you care about, the poor, will be the worst hit along with their children. Get on board the reality ship.

Todd Juvinall, Nevada City

Union influence at Capitol disgusting

I’m disgusted by the influence union money has on the Capitol. Why don’t the lawmakers drop the sales tax on electric cars and put their money where their mouths are?

Vern Luke, Lincoln

Courageous stand against oil use

The Sacramento Bee’s editorial board is correct in saying that oil use must decrease. The proposed decrease amounts to only about 3 percent a year until 2030. This is easily accomplished and would pay huge dividends in the improved health of Californians and as a model for the world. We must stop “canoodling with the oilies.”

Evan Jones, Sacramento

Proposed wage increase too much

Re “ ‘Total compensation’ more like total farce” (Viewpoints, Sept. 13): The city of Sacramento’s minimum-wage task force recently released a proposal suggesting a nearly 40 percent increase to $12.50 per hour. This is too high for Sacramento and does not reflect our cost of living.

A recent study calculated the buying power of many cities and found Sacramento’s buying power to be $97.47. Cities with increased minimum wages have dramatically reduced buying power, including San Diego ($84.02), Los Angeles ($84.60) and San Francisco ($82.44). Sacramento’s average rent is much lower than these cities, with the average cost of a two-bedroom apartment in Sacramento at $1,121, San Diego at $2,015, Los Angeles at $2,591 and San Francisco at $4,385.

While Sacramento’s cost of living does not support such a high minimum wage, this proposal includes provisions to target those increases. I hope the City Council members will look closely at the task force recommendations and its hard work as they finalize this proposal.

Joe Genshlea, Sacramento

Give carbon fees back to residents

Re “State’s carbon model fails in Europe” (Forum, Sept. 13): Wenonah Hauter and Adam Scow point out problems in the California Air Resources Board’s carbon offset program.

Why not use a market-based approach that is sure to decrease CO2 emissions? Why not put an annually increasing fee on CO2 emissions, and give 100 percent of that fee back to California citizens in the form of cuts to California’s state income tax, sales tax and corporation taxes?

Bruce Burdick, Carmichael

Differing views on public unions

Re “Modern conservatism has California roots” (Forum, Sept. 13): UC Davis professor Kathryn Olmsted’s assertions that current Republican presidential candidates share most of the beliefs of conservative opponents of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal are in error.

With respect to the benefits of unions, current Republican presidential candidates distinguish between the benefits of private and public unions, and would limit the power of public unions. In this, they are in full agreement with Roosevelt who was adamantly against public unions, essentially because they introduce a conflict of interest by placing labor’s representatives on both sides of the bargaining table.

Furthermore, rather than being wary of immigrants, most current presidential candidates at least favor monitored guest worker programs for agricultural and high-tech worker immigrants.

Velma Montoya, University of California Regent Emerita

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