o the Editor:
Thomas L. Friedman ("Drilling for Freedom," column, Oct.
20) convincingly explains that Middle East tyrannies will end
when their oil revenues decline. The United States can help
this happen by consuming less fuel.
The only way the United States can reduce fuel use is to
increase the fuel tax. Adding a nickel per gallon every month
until the United States buys its last barrel of imported oil
would cause no more than minor disruption of the economy. Yet
fuel use would decline almost immediately.
Our political process refuses to discuss a tax increase,
the only measure that can work. We are like a 300-pound
patient asking a doctor how to lose weight but insisting that
the answer must not mention eating or exercise.
Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Oct. 20,