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Home Economics

Michael Crowley's "The Good and Bad Economy" clearly points out that a solid majority of Americans favor reducing spending for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq [July 26]. Only 12% favor reducing the deficit by cutting Social Security. Yet Crowley disregards his own data by concluding that President Obama's deficit commission will propose "long overdue cuts to entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare." How about going to national security for deficit reduction and letting seniors receive the Social Security benefits they earned and deserve?

Edward Ferreira, NEW SHARON, MAINE

Your article pushes consuming to revive the U.S. economically. Many citizens are moving in another direction--using fewer resources, raising our own food, and using solar panels for hot water and a bicycle and legs for travel. We should not return to being the consuming culture that we were. Catch up to the times, TIME.

Bill Denneen, NIPOMO, CALIF.

The stimulus package has been great and staved off great turmoil. But if the President really wants to double down, he should do two things. The first: bottom out interest rates on 30-year mortgages to 4% and lend directly to the public. Then everyone would stop waiting for interest rates to fall, borrow money and refinance their lives. The second: tax oil and spend the proceeds directly on energy. Taxing gasoline at the pump and oil as it is imported into this country would generate steady revenue for years to come.

Chris Green, FALMOUTH, MASS.

My Bonnie Is the Bomb

Re "And Now, Your Moment of Men" [July 26]: I have two words to deliver us from the late-night talk-show man cave: Bonnie Hunt. Jay Leno is an uncomfortable interviewer, and David Letterman's sarcasm has lightened only a bit with age. But I watch Bonnie Hunt from beginning to end. She's a great listener, and she's hilarious. Plus, she's a gifted singer and actor and manages to make me think and laugh without sacrificing kindness. Men seem to love her too. Bring us Bonnie!

Mary Dittoe Kelly, COLLEYVILLE, TEXAS

A Jolt from the Volt?

As you describe in "Can the Volt Charge GM?" electric cars are finally heading to the market, and this is a good thing [July 26]. There always seems to be one detail that doesn't get much attention, though. Unless that electric car is plugged into a solar, hydro or wind source of electricity, there's a pretty good chance a coal-fired power plant will be at the other end, so the only result is moving the source of pollution from the tailpipe to the power plant. We need to continue to perfect the electric car while developing clean and nonpolluting sources of electricity. That will be the real achievement and the real solution.

Sid Darden, PENROSE, COLO.

Of Mama and Baby Bears

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