Editor:
Will the national debt and looming entitlement shortages threaten the funds for defense and other necessities? We should write our elected officials and candidates to prevent this — and win elections — by adopting such deficit reduction measures as those proposed by U.S. Sens. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and/or Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), and/or the already passed House budget. The latter is expected to bring in surpluses and start paying down the debt by 2040.
Until then, however, our defenses and other necessities are vulnerable to any changes in foreign investor sentiment. Moreover, having our current debt over 90 percent of gross domestic product is bad for economic growth. Thus they should try to pay off the debt sooner.
The U.S. might, for a certain term, lease a 20 percent interest in rainforest land — or make an installment sale — for partnering with experts to show landowners how to harvest the rainforests many times more profitably (and sustainably). This is discussed by the authors of www.rain-tree.com/ The experts, of course, could take a similar lease or sale amount. Perhaps we can demonstrate this first with American rainforests, such as in Hawaii.
As for subsistence farmers, a practice called Inga alley cropping is discussed at www.rainforestsaver.org. Regarding the cutting down of trees for firewood, an organization known as Solar Cookers International obviates such need for perhaps $5 a person for 5 years. For any of the world’s lumber companies needing assistance in learning sound practices of selectivity without clear-cutting, we could make that knowledge available for a fee.

Alexander Michael Sokolow
Santa Monica