Mining should be considered

To the editor:

After reading the article in the Gazette on July 23 concerning metal mining, it appears that both Stephen Anderson and Dr. Thomas Power might profit from a re-read of their textbook on economics 101.

Mining and agriculture are the only sources of new wealth, so when we allot land for its basic use, these industries must have first priority. Without metals we have no tools, without tools we have can’t farm, if we can’t farm we don’t eat. Can’t get much simpler than that.

From an examination of the pie chart furnished to the Gazette it appears that about half the jobs in the Upper Peninsula come from the service industries, government, tourism, etc. I don’t wish to deride these industries but we must recognize that unlike mining and agriculture they produce no wealth but in fact are consumers of wealth.

“Natural Amenities,” I think the author is referring to thinks like vistas etc., are fine but useless without a healthy economy built on a viable industrial base.

Nothing lasts forever, be it the mining industry in the U.P. or the auto industry in Detroit. The U.P. owes its initial existence to mining and as new methods of exploration and mining are developed, and provided we don’t kill the baby during the birthing process, we may again sometime down the road, reap the harvest of an active and viable mining industry in the Upper Peninsula.

James Brooks