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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    Issues Forum addresses economy, oil

    Former U.S. Defense Secretary William Cohen named terrorism, a high oil demand and China as reasons for rising gas prices during his appearance at an annual Issues Forum Thursday.
    Cohen, along with Mississippi Development Authority executive Leland Speed and economist Jeff Thredgold, tackled top economic issues at the Wise Center auditorium.
    “We are experiencing the strongest global economy ever, and there is a high demand for oil,” Cohen said. “Secondly, China has and will influence everything economically for the next 20 years, including their need for oil.”
    Cohen also named terrorist threats and the U.S. recession as contributors.
    “The U.S. dollar lost 35 percent of its purchasing power to the Euro,” he said. “The fear of terrorism and attacks on oil businesses also drives up the price.”
    Cohen also said Social Security, despite worries, will still be around when students are old enough to need it.
    “(Social Security) is a contract between this country and its people,” Cohen said. “However, I would suggest tinkering around the edges to improve it.”
    Speed spoke of issues that are closer to home and urged students and local residents to “think regionally.”
    “Don’t think about just your own community,” Speed said.
    He added that development of Mississippi is further along than most think “The stars are as close to being aligned for Mississippi as they ever will be,” Speed said.
    Some Starkville residents were slightly disappointed in the lack of student interest.
    “The issues addressed today were important to me and should be to the university students,” Starkville resident Lady Mary Thompson said. “They will have to deal with these one day whether they like it or not. I would encourage them to ponder the economic problems of their state and country sooner rather than later.”

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    Issues Forum addresses economy, oil