Dodd-Frank Act needs one important change

May I suggest another Obama legacy besides health care that also deserves our thoughtful attention — the Dodd-Frank Act, which was passed to clamp down on those responsible for our home loan mess. I don’t know about the entire act, but one line needs to be repealed. Let me describe a scenario.

Your college graduate gets a good-paying job, and instead of enjoying a higher standard of living, he or she decides to continue living frugally before forgetting how to, and pay off his student loan. He sets aside $500 per month and decides to invest it in the stock market and use the profits to pay off the loan. Being very cautious, his profits are small but steady and he nibbles away at the debt.

The inevitable happens. After careful consideration, he is convinced a certain company’s value is going to go down because of poor management decisions. He decides to place a sell trade. Instead it goes up and continues up. Quick! Place a hedge trade! (a trade in the same stock but in the opposite direction of the original trade). Done! Whew. Well, no profit today but he saved his investing money.

Enter Dodd-Frank. Amongst all the pages is one sentence that forbids hedge trading. This tiny part of the law has had a huge impact. Our graduate continues trading very cautiously and makes tiny profits for quite a while, but again makes a mistake. Hedge please! No. Not allowed. He now endures no profit today, but also watches his investment money be swept away by traders in other countries that have no law against hedge trading. Huge amounts of American money quickly left the U.S. for those countries, but our young graduate doesn’t have enough money to do that.

Could we please keep this in mind, and if anyone has an opportunity to speak up for its repeal, please don’t forget.

Suzanne Kahle

Baker City

Renewable fuels standard good for Oregon

Whether it’s for cattle or crops, farmers and ranchers have been on the forefront of conservation. Many frontline harvesters of the land and sea are also leading efforts to find new ways to cultivate and care for soil and water, fisheries and farmland. Partnerships, like the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS), between the agriculture community and the alternative energy industry, show the valuable opportunities that can arise when we all come together.

Confronting our environmental problems requires us to remember that our states, our communities, and our professions — our people — are more complicated than we often think. But changes like this don’t come easy. Congress must stay consistent so that our industry can do what we do best. I encourage Congressman Walden to maintain the RFS as it is and give Oregon’s agricultural community and economy the certainty to grow.

As a rancher, we want to leave the land, air and water a little better for our children. Long-term stability in biofuel production and the Renewable Fuels Standard is good for Oregon and the ranch.

Curtis Martin

North Powder

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