Letters to the Editor: No climate crisis, reasonable Republicans: Some things were better 50 years ago

People take photos as smoke from wildfires in Canada causes hazy conditions in New York on June 7.
People take photos as smoke from wildfires in Canada causes hazy conditions in New York on June 7.
(Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images)
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To the editor: Jonah Goldberg makes a good argument that most Americans are better off than 50 years ago. However, there is one critical part of our lives that is a threat to everyone, and that is the climate crisis.

We and the entire planet were much better off 50 years ago. This was just about the time that the oil industry started lying about the impact of carbon dioxide emissions.

Fifty years from now, will there even be a population to look back on nostalgically?

Ann Sturman, Westlake Village



To the editor: While I have little to disagree with in Goldberg’s column regarding nostalgia, I would like to point out his examples of things that are better now than 50 years ago — cleaner air and water, safer cars and fewer injuries and deaths on the job — are primarily the results of government regulation.

We have the Environmental Protection Agency and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Just think what our food would be like without the Food and Drug Administration.

Oh yes, we can all wax nostalgic and return to the early 20th century, when Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle” brought to the nation’s attention the hazardous and unsanitary conditions of the nation’s meat industry. His chilling book prompted Congress to create the federal agency that ultimately became the FDA.

Government regulation isn’t so bad, unless you like listeria.

Dean Okrand, Sherman Oaks


To the editor: Looking at Goldberg’s column, I came to a dead stop when I read, “Americans are richer today than decades ago.”


I can be nostalgic about a few things, including when in the 1960s I could have a part-time job, pay the rent (I had a roommate to help), put gas in my clunker and go to UCLA for $67 a quarter.

Who can do that today? Now, many Americans have a negative net worth, and 40% of us don’t have the savings to cover an emergency that would cost $400.

I’m also nostalgic for lawmakers like Republican Sen. David Durenberger of Minnesota, who chaired a subcommittee on climate change in 1985. The subcommittee called witnesses such as Carl Sagan and other distinguished scientists.

Durnenburger prepared for the hearing by reading books and papers on the subject and stated in his opening remarks that the greenhouse effect should be called “climatic destruction.”

Yes, I’m nostalgic for some things.

Wayne Morgan, Ventura


To the editor: Goldberg is correct that many aspects of our lives are better than 50 years ago, but one is immeasurably worse — the Republican Party.


Half a century ago, GOP leaders convinced a defiant Richard Nixon to resign the presidency in light of the irrefutable evidence of his guilt that would lead to his impeachment and removal.

Now, Republicans deny undeniable facts and continue to support a man whose defiance knows no bounds, to the point of encouraging insurrection.

Alan B. Posner, Santa Barbara