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Might as Well Face It, We're Addicted to Oil

April 24, 2002

Stanley Weiss is certainly right that the U.S. isn't wedded to cheap Saudi oil (Commentary, April 19). Yes, cheap oil. Isn't the U.S. getting it for $25 a barrel and then charging more than triple that amount as taxes? Thus, the government is making threefold what the Saudis are getting. Isn't that cheap?

Personally, I wish that our oil would be saved in its wells for our next generations, or at least so that the Saudis are relieved from being a buffer producer for the sake of keeping oil prices inexpensive for the West. When I evaluate the present oil situation I can't help but remember a statement by the late Shah of Iran 40 years ago: He said that oil is too precious to burn.

Faiz Mansour Alsubaei

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

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Weiss correctly points out that "The U.S. Isn't Wedded to Saudi Oil." Yes, but we're still going steady. Oh, if we just had the opportunity to pare down our dependence to the point that Saudi opinion would no longer be a consideration in the formulation of U.S. foreign policy. Voila, we can produce a significant portion of the Saudi fraction by drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

But this remedy has been snatched from us by an outbreak in the U.S. Senate of the dreaded "caribou fever" (April 19). As expected, senators from cold states were particularly vulnerable: Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont and Illinois were hit hard. Senators from warm states like Georgia, Hawaii and Louisiana appear to enjoy natural immunity.

William R. Snaer

Lake Arrowhead

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