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Lee Iacocca, the Columnist

October 20, 1985

"I believe that we ought to have an energy policy (at the federal level). We are setting ourselves up for the next oil crisis. Don't we ever learn?"

The preceding quote was excerpted from an introductory column by Lee Iacocca (Editorial Pages, Oct. 13), marking the beginning of a series of articles concerning American business by the Chrysler chairman. While many of his comments were provocative and controversial, the quote reprinted here is one of the more interesting comments.

An energy policy is needed at the federal level. But I fail to see the need for one before auto makers take the responsibility themselves and work toward solving the problem from their end. Why should grown men need the government to hold their hand and lead them along the path of common sense?

In the final analysis the auto makers' responsibility is to the shareholders and the auto industry (along with support industries) as a whole. This attitude is reflected in the recent relaxation of energy efficiency standards for new cars by the federal government at the pressured insistence of General Motors and Ford. At this time the auto makers are asking (pressuring) the government to make further reductions in standards for new cars. Gas guzzlers are coming back.

L. WADE WORKMAN JR.

Santa Barbara

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