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Address human need, not greed

need, not greed What's going on with the surging gas prices? Do you believe the oil companies when they contend it is pure free-market competition? It's hard to swallow that explanation.
   Three years ago, 10 major oil companies agreed to pay a total of $151 million to settle suits by four Western states that said "Big Oil" conspired to contrive a shortage of gas and fix prices at the pump.
   And right now in 1996, these same "Big Oil" companies may have short-changed the U.S. government by a whopping $856 million by understating the value of the oil pumped from federal lands and therefore paid smaller royalties.
   The credibility rating of "Big Oil" can't get much lower, and now some of these same corporations, i.e. Texaco, ARCO, and GATX, want to bury their pipeline through our Valley in the name of greater profits.
   At a Snoqualmie Middle School public hearing, a North Bend resident asked these same oil people what benefits the Valley would receive, considering all the risks of having a pipeline endangering our aquifer, rivers, drinking water, etc. The response was that we would derive a 1% reduction in tanker truck traffic over I-90!
   "Big Oil" is on the march to make even greater profit, but an informed public can counteract their strategy to use our Valley for their agenda. Sign the advisory petitions that are being circulated and let Texaco, ARCO, and friends know it is human needs we must address--not human greed.

D.L. Weibling, North Bend