The Post's continuing crusade against the U.S. sugar program {"Sugar Castle," editorial, Dec. 21} produces some fun headlines but little more.

Nothing better illustrates The Post's nearsighted view of the sugar system than the behavior of the world sugar market in the days after the 1988 U.S. sugar quota was announced. According to this logic, the reduced U.S. sugar quota should have brought the roof in on foreign sugar producers. Instead, the world sugar market rose more than 10 percent, and is more than 50 percent above last year's level. The Philippines, rather than being crushed by the U.S. quota reduction, began buying sugar to cover shortfalls in its market commitments.

The continued cry that the sugar program gouges consumers falls on deaf ears because consumers pay no more for sugar today than they did five years ago. Consumers do remember 1974 and 1980, when they paid 50 and 60 cents per pound for sugar that today costs 35 cents.

Finally, The Post's backhanded attack on the U.S. corn sweetener industry ignores the new market and jobs that have been created for U.S. farmers and workers and the multi-billion-dollar reduction in the trade deficit that has come from a new domestic industry. In a time when big trade news brings Wall Street to its knees, the development of new domestic industry should be praised, not damned. ROBERT C. LIEBENOW President, Corn Refiners Association, Inc. Washington

The Post seems intent on perpetuating the myth that the U.S. sugar program is all that stands in the way of prosperity and political stability throughout the Caribbean and in the Philippines. Surely we must all be concerned about the problems of our less developed trading partners, but it's unfair to expect domestic sugar producers to bear the entire burden, just as it's unreasonable to expect that "exporting" some 200,000 jobs directly and indirectly associated with this industry will solve the problems in those countries.

It should also be noted that the Philippines is now importing sugar because of a shortfall in production, and the price there is reportedly above U.S. prices. Seven other countries assured access to the U.S. market by the quota program annually consume more sugar than they produce. This points to the danger of destroying the U.S. industry and becoming totally reliant on foreign suppliers as the source for this vital link in our national food chain.

U.S. sugar prices are lower than they were prior to enactment of the current sugar program, and consumers here have a dependable supply at stable prices below the average paid in 15 other free-world capitals, according to a government survey. DENNIS O'ROURKE Vice Chairman of the Board, Holly Sugar Corporation Colorado Springs