Letters to the editor on finding solutions, Keystone pipeline

03/11/2013 12:00 AM

03/08/2013 5:17 PM

Apply ‘solutionism’ to politics

Dow Chemical Co. has introduced this corporate motto: “Solutionism. The more we talk together, the more we solve together.” Dow can use the solutionism mindset to solve technical problems, and real communication within a corporation is always a great goal.

I would like to expand the concept to deal with the morass of noise and nonsense existing in current state and national government.

If you are a solutionist, you will be required to apply reason in solving problems. You will need to resort to whatever reservoir of rational thought you can muster. You must be quick to separate fact from opinion, and pragmatism will trump dogmatism.

The political solutionist will be a bit of an ombudsman, certainly nonpartisan and, in as much as humans can be, a seeker of truths. I look at solutionism as pragmatic and rational.

Solutionism would require political bravery, would upset purveyors of fixed beliefs, and would make thinking more important than reacting. It would stress the concrete and real effects of decisions, leaving emotional conjecture as a sanctuary for the uninformed. Solutionism certainly would not be an easy refuge.

H.L. Mencken said, “For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong.” We knew that already, and looking for a solution does not imply simplicity. It implies thinking, a commodity in short supply.



Approve pipeline

I am amazed by all the misinformation regarding the Keystone XL pipeline. “Rally opposed Keystone pipeline” (Feb. 23 Letters to the Editor) said the pipeline will leak and “destroy our beautiful state and pollute our groundwater,” which will affect us, our children and grandchildren.

What would hurt our children and grandchildren is not approving the pipeline. We currently feed money to buy oil to the Middle East, where some of the countries are not our friends. I would rather feed our dollars to our neighbors to the north, who are our friends.

It’s not a question of whether there will be a conflict with the Middle East, but when. At the time this takes place, we will have more security by having oil flowing from friendly nations.

There are thousands of existing pipelines, and the media do a good job reporting all the negatives, but the truth is never told about the safety and success of companies mitigating mistakes. New regulations require companies to almost gold-plate newly constructed lines and update existing lines. Also, railcars are passing in the night carrying Canadian crude, which carries the same risk of damaging our beautiful state.

Leave the oil industry alone. It provides jobs and contributes so many other positive things to our society and economy.



Oil won’t stay here

Apparently nobody has informed the writer of “Allow pipeline” (Feb. 27 Letters to the Editor) that the tar-sands oil to be piped through the Keystone XL pipeline is not going to stay here. It’s already earmarked to be sold to other countries in the international market.

The few permanent jobs created will not be enough to offset the additional risk that another pipeline creates – particularly now that we are realizing how scarce our existing water supply is.

Why endanger – to any degree – the aquifer in the heart of our nation?

Those who say, “Don’t worry – the pipe won’t break,” should investigate how often the Alaska pipeline has sprung a leak. Or how many other U.S. pipelines have had mishaps occur in the past 10 years.

I’m sure the people living on the Gulf Coast never foresaw what happened there not so long ago.

We need another oil pipeline like China needs another coal-fired power plant or Japan another nuclear reactor.



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