Letter: Foreign companies are buying too many valuable U.S. assets

To the Editor:

The Shelton Herald’s Editorial on April 9 warned us that “water is a valuable and limited resource that is under-valued and under-appreciated.”

Locally, this precious water was operated by the Bridgeport Hydraulic Co. until 1999, when it was taken by eminent domain from Connecticut taxpayers.

On June 4, 1999, the Connecticut Post ran a large headline, “The British are coming,” and within six months a few British businessmen from a Yorkshire water company had purchased Fairfield County reservoirs, water rights, lakes and 18,770 acres of pristine undeveloped land.

The sale of our water supply was approved by many Connecticut officials and agencies sworn to protect us, including then-state Attorney General Dick Blumenthal, our U.S. senators, and the state Department of Public Utilities Control (now known as the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority).

Taking the new name Aquarion, the British company set up shop in Bridgeport to purchase more U.S. water supplies — in Long Island, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and other locations. It boasts of purchasing the reservoirs of 70 towns and cities in Connecticut, with all the billions of dollars in profits going to England.

Aquarion was been so profitable that it was listed as the fourth largest taxpayer in Connecticut ($37,075,300).

It’s important to also note that British Petroleum bought our Alaskan oil fields, and it recently renewed a 10-year lease on the Gulf offshore oil.

While our attention was riveted on overseas political problems last year, the entire Smithfield Co. — the largest pork producer in the United States — was purchased by a Chinese meat-packing company for $4.7 billion.

China now employs U.S. real estate agencies to purchase prime land, hotels, motels, seaside properties and businesses for them.

Brazil and Argentina passed laws restricting foreign ownership of their land and resources. Our Congress should wake up and make laws to stop the sell-off before our greedy businessmen sell off all of our prime assets.

Hundreds of thousands of our men sacrificed their lives to protect and save this land, now so readily being sold off. There should be limits put on the prime assets the Chinese can buy with the trillion-dollar debt our government owes them.

How can our government explain this terrible loss of our nation’s wealth to our heroic, battle-scarred veterans?

Should our loyal citizens be forced to stand by helplessly and watch the dismantling of our beloved country?

Dick De Witt