Letters To The Editor For May 2007

Blanchard's head in the sand?

Re "Just In Time -- Daddy, Why Does Your Company Want to Hurt Everybody?" April 2007.

Mr. Blanchard takes a somewhat skeptical view of the threat of global warming and frets over the unfairness of blame being assigned to manufacturers. There is no question that consumer lifestyles, demands, and buying choices play a significant role in this. But other major factors, including the head-in-the-sand and subversion of science policies of the current administration and many manufacturers' choices of denial and avoidance over innovation and contribution, deserve a share of the responsibility.

Mr. Blanchard criticizes Ms. Abrams' quote as a threat to industry: "Companies that choose to ignore environmental concerns can expect to find themselves at an economic disadvantage to those who embrace and effectively respond to it."

I don't see that as a threat; I see it as a positive incentive for change: Make a positive impact on a serious problem, get ahead of the game, and prosper from it.

Also, Mr. Blanchard might be well advised to be concerned about melting glaciers. The glass may be half empty or half full, but it is clear that it is leaking.

James Peavey
Bath, Maine

You ask, "If global warming really is the dire threat that it is being portrayed as, why does the blame fall on manufacturers?"

The answer is that manufacturing plants are the ones using a lot of the material in question. I don't think my labor day smoker will ever be confused with a coal-burning power plant. It's simply in the numbers, so there is no need to be nave about this.

"The good news is only 13% of the American people have heard of global warming." This is obviously an off the cuff remark, but it is very true that much of the public is not convinced that our environmental problems are for real. In fact, I believe some people try very hard to downplay this information to the point of belittling the people that do. And, I agree that these people do value profits more than our well being.

I would say that as American manufacturers, we have to realize that this problem is real and be committed to do something about it. The perception is there so we had better act on it and get better at explaining what we are doing. When you look at the rest of the industrial world, the U.S. is doing tons more in this "green" endeavor than anyone else. We need to emphasize this to our paying public, explain the technological advances that we have made, and let them know where we stand. This doesn't have to be the public relations disaster that you are worried about.

Above all, we have to make money. We have to prove to the public that we are not all crooks and we are working very hard to grow and create jobs.

Jerry Carlew
purchasing manager
Texarkana, Texas
Mayo Mfg. Corp.

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