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Selling the City Means Living Off Our Capital

October 05, 1986

Dick Turpin's Sept. 21 column about the "Selling of Los Angeles" was encouraging for anyone who has been concerned about the precarious state of our national finances. With a trade deficit approaching $200 billion and national debt of $2 trillion, some people have been afraid that the rest of the world would cancel our charge cards. We seemed on our way to becoming the world's largest banana republic.

Happily, Dick Turpin has pointed out a solution. His figures show that 75% of the Los Angeles central business district is now owned by foreign investors. This suggests that our trade deficit is not hopeless. If we can't sell our manufactured goods and farm products overseas, we can at least sell the United States. We should be able to swap land for VCR's and Toyotas for years before the new owners ask us to move out.

It is simply a matter of living off our capital, of trading off assets that are in oversupply. If foreign buyers like office buildings, we are in luck. We have a lot more than we need. There are probably other things in oversupply that we might want to put up for sale. Corporate raiders and overpaid quarterbacks come to mind.

C.M. DEASY

San Luis Obispo

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