The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 5, 1997 · Page 21
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December 5, 1997

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 21

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West Palm Beach, Florida
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Friday, December 5, 1997
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THE PALM BEACH POST FRIDAY, DECEMBER 5, 1997 23A In lieu of taxes: Ads on dollar bills, a presidential access lottery Py David Wallechinsky ! Nobodv likes tn nav taYes The desecration of an American icon, but let's be honest the symbolism is perfect Use money to make money. Create a royal family. Royal families, when handled properly, are a profitable institution. Take a look at the British royal family. They sell tons of royal family memorabilia, and the British aren't even as good at marketing as Americans are. The idea is to choose a family that is dignified, yet prone to scandal. The Kennedys are the obvious choice, but too many of their family members are involved in politics. The key to a profitable royal family is to ensure that they are powerless. The Kennedys are too dangerous they might try to become a real royal family. Instead, how about Michael Jackson and his family? Reinstitute the draft and allow paid exemptions. During the Civil War, draftees in the North were able to avoid service by paving the government $300. Let's do it again. Raise the price to $3,000, draft everyone between the ages of 16 and 60, and we could probably raise $300 billion. Does it seem unfair that we would end up with an Army consisting almost entirely of poor people? We have that now anyway, so why not make a little money on it? Sell invasion insurance to other nations. These days, most wars are civil wars. Very few nations are actually invaded by another country. Yet many governments, particularly dictatorships, are paranoid about being invaded. Surely the CIA can be counted on to scare them to the point of paying up. And anyway, it's about time the CIA started earning its keep. Sell nights at the White House. President Clinton had the right idea. But the money should go to the U.S. government, not the Democratic National Committee. And why limit the president's fund-raising to sleeping in the Lincoln Bedroom? How about selling rides on Air Force One? Or attendance at Cabinet meetings? Maybe even sharing the president's bed? This last possibility might not be appealing when the Republicans are in power, but the Demo- problem is that the ITS heeds money and lots of it to do all the things we want it to do. So we tend to j think of taxes as unpleasant necessities. I believe taxes can be eliminated We just need to be more aggressive about creating new sources of revenue. Here are a few suggestions: B Sell advertising on naner mnnev Take a look at a dollar bill. See that blank border that surrounds the designs? Dozens of comDanies would pav huce sums of money to insert their logos and slogans into that space. I know that some So-called purists may consider this a crats have enormous potential. Create a national presidential lottery. Why should presidential access be limited to rich people? access the prize in a national lottery bring equality to the world of corruption. Runners-up could dine with members the Supreme Court and Congress. These are just a few ideas for creating revenue. Send me your suggestions together let's eliminate taxes and the federal government pay its own B David Wallechinsky, author of Wallechinsky's 20th Century History With the Boring Parts Left Out, wrote article for the Los Angeles Tunes. If Florida heats up, economy will cool Skeptics overlook the potential in the U.S. for destructive flooding. Florida, in particular, urgently needs a strong treaty in Kyoto to foretell the - effects of climate change. access Make and of and make way. David this Is Internet 'paper mill' a real threat? By David G. Post Although Boston University seems to be fighting the good fight and upholding important standards of educational integrity in its lawsuit against alleged "term paper mills'' operating on the Internet, we would be better off if and when the university loses its lawsuit . ' I'm not suggesting that students should be encouraged to purchase rather than write term papers. Such a practice undermines important educational values. But whether the lawsuit succeeds is going to have little bearing on whether term papers are widely available on the Net within the next few years. I'd wager that in five years, regardless of the outcome in the case, youll be able to give me any topic at 9 a.m., and by afternoon, I'll have whatever length paper you demand. : We should all but educators especially welcome this development A world in which you can type "Jane Eyre and the theme of marriage in 19th-century English fiction, 25 pages maximum," into your computer and have a stack of documents delivered to your desktop fulfills a dream humankind has had since the library of Alexandria. Quite apart from whether we can stop this from-happening, why should we want to? The Internet is turning into a glo By Monte Belote Everyone knows that Florida's economy depends on tourism. Tourism, in turn, depends on our 8,000 miles of coastline, much of it sandy . beaches. Coastal states earn 85 percent of all U.S. tourist revenue and a whopping 90 percent of reve- ?- nue from tourists visiting from abroad. f' More than 40 million tourists from the U.S. and c., abroad visit our state annually, spending well over $33 billion and providing employment for nearly ' three-quarters of a million Floridians. A i i! a u i i a n cnange in our cumaie couia snux our , line permanently. The Earth's atmosphere is warm- ing due to greenhouse gases from fossil-fuel ex- haust, the chief sources of which are power genera-tion and vehicles that emit carbon dioxide and oth-" er compounds into the atmosphere, where they ; -. trap the sun's heat, gradually raising our planet's v, temperature. ' ;- This has been occurring slowly but irreversibly ' since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. As , carbon dioxide gradually accumulates in the atmo- sphere, it can remain there for a century or more. At the moment, 160 nations are meeting in Kyo- y to, Japan, to negotiate a treaty limiting the amount of CO2 each can release into the atmosphere. So far, the major objections in the U.S. to an accord ..v are economic: Critics contend that reductions in ;'X; greenhouse pollution will be too costly. jt Such claims ignore studies showing little nega-' tive economic impact plus a net gain in jobs if we i;v address global warming. Beyond that, skeptics overlook the potential in the U.S. and elsewhere for destructive flooding, increased heat waves, insect- V: borne epidemics, and unprecedented droughts. n : j : -:.. I iU. 1 1- ') - r lunua, ui paruiuuu , ui gciiuy uccua asu ung ,v treaty in Kyoto to toreteii tne enects 01 cumate a change. !'"T. Scientists estimate that even if all the nations ot the world could reduce their greenhouse gases to bal "term-paper mill." Some, of course, will abuse this power. But the suppliers of information should be encouraged in their efforts to bring this new world into being. For professors, however, it's a serious problem: How do you design an educational experience in a world in which end-of-semester term papers no longer serve as a means of measuring students' abilities? Perhaps if Boston University would divert some of its money and brainpower away from this lawsuit and toward trying to come up with solutions to this problem, we might all be further along in finding ways for our students to take advantage of this extraordinary library being built under our noses. B David G. Post, associate professor of law at Temple University and co-director of the Cyberspace Law Institute, wrote this article for The Washington Post ing much of the sandy barrier that keeps the Atlantic Ocean at bay. Septic systems would be inundated, as would groundwater sources. As the Atlantic pushed inland, the St. Johns River would widen and rise, .causing a long stretch of Interstate 295 to lie underwater. There certainly won't be enough public works money to bridge all the rivers and inlets that will flood roads when seas rise. No economist has calculated how Florida will endure the loss of thousands of miles of sandy coastline, and its tourist industry, if the sea level rises 6 inches or more. All of us should hope for a Kyoto treaty that lowers the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. It may be the best insurance we can buy for our golden beaches and our economic survival. B Monte Belote is executive director of the Florida Consumer Action Network, a statewide membership organization committed to consumer and environmental protection. embarked on ambitious schemes to restore beaches by dredging thousands of tons of sand offshore and rebuilding eroded areas. Damage to Panama City beach, for example, ' has forced local officials to undertake restoration of a 16-mile stretch of beach at a cost of $30 million the most ambitious and expensive "renourishment" project yet in Florida. In Lee County, a third of the county's beaches are washing out to sea. Even the best restoration is temporary: a very successful, project lasts about 10 years. At this rate, all our technical know-how and tax revenues from tourists won't be able to keep up with recurring shoreline damage. If we continue to do little or nothing to tackle climate change, even more profound losses could occur, including our fabled Florida Keys, whose disappearance would have an incalculable environmental toll. Picture the following scenario: Jacksonville los '," 1990 levels, atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide would still double within 100 years. V Doubled CO2 will have serious consequences for our climate. Before the end of the 21st century, the . Earth's average mean temperature will rise by 3 to 'ft 6 degrees. Higher temperatures will expand the volume of water in the oceans. Sea levels will increase 6 to 36 inches. In some parts of Florida, beaches are already ' slipping away due to storm surges and the almost imperceptible rise of the ocean. Gulf waters are j- digging at the foundations of waterfront properties. I Using local and federal money, communities have i K I 1 Lets suj poena Whew, now it's just my rivals and this darn old bald spot the Freeh memo Maureen Dowd t. President Clinton's attorney general rejected the tfong, written recommendation of the FBI director to flpoint independent counsel to investigate a conspiracy subvert the federal election laws. Senate Judiciary is now seeking a copy of Louis iJeeh's memo of protest; Janet Reno will try to suppress .Sen. Arlen Specter has it right: The Department of ifctice cannot survive half slave and half Freeh." Who are the bureaucrats behind her slavish decision &lock the FBI from fighting crime at the top? t'One is Robert S. Litt, a partisan Democrat nominated It years ago by Mr. Clinton to be chief of the criminal $sion. When his FBI file arrived at the Senate, the simulation froze; privately, a justice official asked Senate feel pretty, oh, so pretty, I feel pretty and witty and not gay, But very pleased to put the issue Of those phone calls behind us. I usually have trouble expressing my emotions, but today I just want to sing. Today, I don't even care about the Spot because, hey, I'm off the spot. Janet Reno has made me so darn giddy. It's not tactical joviality, as in my New Yorker interview with Joe Klein, who said I was trying too hard. Now I've learned to calibrate better and stop giggling and weeping just to show I can loosen up. Now I know how to do untactical joviality. I am just so relieved that I got this independent counsel monkey off my back. Freeh udiciary not to pursue it. William Safire ' Mr. Lift's law partner was David Kendall, the presi-pnt'Q nrivate attorney. Although Mr. Litt had to settle for he title of principal associate deputy attorney general, he unctions as the new Web Hubbell the Clintons' man at is no Hoover, thank goodness. He just stamps his feet. Way to go, Janet! I can admit now that Bill and I were really scared for awhile that the big gal was not on the team. We thought she might be some alligator-wrestling, man-hating oddball who'd tar our hides just to prove usuce He oversees tne criminal envision, aim wmi lorida's John Hogan, whitewasher of Iraqgate mas- While the coast is sort of clear, I'm having a coming-out party this week, running hither and yon, talking about AIDS, Internet safeguards, education, the environment, setting up my issues. Uh-oh. I feel the jitters coining back. I don't feel like singing any more. I don't feel pretty. I mean, I know I am pretty. I just don't feel that way right now. My rivals those vultures are circling. They figure they can use this sleaze stuff to knock me off my throne. Will that loser Fred Thompson ever shut up? Senators from Tennessee sure aren't what they used to be. He got out there last night yammering again about the Troubling Array of Facts. Just get used to it Lizard Boy gave a speech up at Harvard, my Harvard, last night practically announcing his candidacy. He's been working on that pounding fistkarate chop action, trying to look forceful. "We need a Democratic Party where principles trump tactics," Gephardt said. "We need a Democratic Party that is a movement for change and not a money machine." Gee whiz, who's that aimed at? Just get used to it Cosmic Bob had breakfast with reporters the other day, practically announcing his candidacy. Kerrey complained that U.S. policy against Saddam is not muscular enough. Who's that aimed at? Just get used to it Boring Bradley is polishing his Q rating with those homilies about the real America on CBS News. They're like gauzy campaign ads, only he doesn't even have to pay for them with soft money'Just get used to it Heading off to Kyoto now to talk global warming. I'll try not to get too charged up about the Earth disappearing. (Like my hair.) Anyhow, I like the Earth today. Maureen Dowd is a columnist for The New York Times. , f Mr. Gore rminaea last monui s puunwyr uu. uouigjoiu-i m Itra-accessible media queen. With Mr. Clinton unwilling to fill the criminal division ,,ct fnr twn vears. that job has been handled by Jack teeney, 75, who cannot supervise the campaign money candal because nis son is a lawyer ioi juim numig. , Further down in the Public Integrity section are two ..roQurmfi time-servers. Lee Radek and Jo Ann Far- injrton, who last year sought to block prosecution by ecution. Knowing disregard of Section 607 while raising $500,000 inside the Oval Office? We don't enforce that law. Solicitation of foreign donations prohibited by Section 441(e)? We don't enforce that either. The Clinton-Gore Campaign Finance Conspiracy of 1995-96 involves the subversion of the agreement to accept public financing by raising "soft money" to do the work of "hard money"; the assignment of a Commerce official, John Huang, to a political committee to solicit money from foreign sources; the sale of influence to and through 30 witnesses who have taken the Fifth Amendment, six suspects who have fled the country and 12 foreigners who refuse to see investigators. What next? Let's subpoena the Freeh memo. Let's hear some outrage. Al Gore hailed Ms. Reno's "full and independent review" precisely what this was not Removal from office for her simple failure to obey the Independent Counsel Act is an option. "Some big blob" is getting bigger. B William Safire is a folumnist for The New York Times. ydepCIlQCni COUHSCl JUUliaiu wiiuaiu ui a vvnu;i uiuv. iu r. Clinton's agriculture secretary. Their obstruction failed spectacularly this week. The ook whom "Public Integrity" tried to help avert prose-ition was found guilty by a jury on three counts of lying ,out taking $22,000. her r eisty Independence. Well, she won't be around for the Gore administration. She can head off into the sunset with Donna Shalala in that truck she dreams about with the cooler and the stove and the dresser and the cot. I'm going to have someone more dependable at Justice, my own Ed Meese, someone who appreciates the importance of a very, very narrow interpretation of the law. Bill says now we can finally get back to business as usual. Of course, stepping in messes is his business as usual. Being his vice president is like being one of those soldiers in World War II who used to walk in front of Patton's tank to check for mines. No fonder my nerves are shot. f Is it any wonder that Mr. f reeh wants the courts to loose an independent prosecutor, free of the wide-read conflicts of interest and sustained ineptness that is split the Department of Justice from the FBI? The campaign finance scandal is not, as partisans and Weaucrats around Janet Reno prefer to see it a series of screte acts that can be dismissed as unworthy ot pros-

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