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Letters to the Editor for Tuesday, April 2

Letters to the Editor for Tuesday, April 2

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Blame CEOs, not unions, for GE woes
I’m glad Michael Davi enjoyed his years at GE starting in l976. I agree “what’s happening lately is disturbing.”
While Davi was enjoying gas turbine, I was at headquarters promoting Jones’ program called “Factory of the Future” to modernize U.S. GE manufacturing plants. Jones knew competitors like Siemens had productivity increases of 8 percent a year because of plant- and equipment investments.
But don’t blame the unions for resisting automation. I also knew the GE negotiators, Baldwin and later Rocheleau. Yes, the 60s were rough. But in the 70s, the unions supported CEO Reginald Jones’ plans to modernize the 150 U.S. factories to be more competitive.
When Jack Welch succeeded Jones in 1981, he canceled the “Factory of the Future” program. 
He turned GE into a financial company by selling GE consumer-, industrial- and defense businesses. No longer did 10 percent of profits go into R&D. Product development labs were closed. Advanced technology was even sold.  
Jones, right before his death, rued the day he supported the GE board and backed Welch and not Stan Gault, who went on to head Rubbermaid and later Goodyear, which are old and very viable U.S. businesses today. Too many greedy CEOs like Welch find it easier and more profitable (for themselves) to harvest a garden rather than grow it.
Today, we now have a hedge-fund manager in charge of what is left. Jack Welch has no worries because he left with a golden parachute of $417,361,902 (www.GMIratings.com) plus a $9 million-a-year pension.
Mary Kuykendall
Ballston Lake
 
 
Cartoon on Trump, McCain offensive
I am really saddened by The Daily Gazette’s publishing of the cartoon of Trump tweeting a repulsive tweet dropping poop on Sen. John McCain’s tombstone. I find it very offensive and not newsworthy.
Coni Tracki
Amsterdam
 
 
Get facts on failure to act on climate
Based on the March 22 Gazette column by Nicolas Lortis, a fellow at the Heritage Foundation, the Green New Deal isn’t needed. He claims if we cut our CO2 emissions by 100 percent, it won’t make a difference. Let’s keep our big gas-hog pickups and SUVs filled with red meat.
Yes, do what he suggests. Assume we maintain a 2 percent annual growth in GDP through 2100, and we dump all those nasty regulations on fossil fuel consumption. The United States would add some 370 Gigatons of Carbon (GtC) over the next 81 years. 
Climate scientists have developed what’s termed the “Carbon Budget.” This states that humans can add only 1000GtC to the atmosphere to limit temperature increase to 2C. As of now, humans have put in 535GtC since 1750, meaning we can add only 465CtC more. If we stay the same, the rest of the world (96 percent of the population) can emit only 95GtC. We get to generate 80 percent of the gases, everyone else 20 percent. 
Realistically, the world will generate sufficient CO2, that the IPCC 2015 RCP8.5 Scenario best describes our future planet. Global temperatures would be 4.8 degrees C higher in 2100, with CO2 over 900 ppm. This is catastrophic for our planet and my grandchildren. 
The Green New Deal needs to be seriously evaluated on how it will limit climate change. 
Let’s start by all becoming familiar with the science. Check out Coursera, a MOOC offering free climate change courses from major universities worldwide. Be concerned.
Don Cooper
Amsterdam
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