Ardent Eden

Ardent Eden is a place to explore my thoughts about the interdependence of life - humanity and nature - and to engage with others for collective problem-solving.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Is Evil Too Strong a Word?

I don't like to throw around the word "evil" much. But I'm starting to agree with Harry Reid that this Congress may be the most corrupt in history. I woke up to the headline this morning that the House defense bill (that's right, a bill that is supposed to focus only on defense matters) contains a provision to open the Artic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. The defense spending bill also contained provisions for funds related to Hurricane Katrina and bird flu, apparently making it hard for some House members to vote against it in their bleary-eyed pre-holiday state. This makes me absolutely raving mad! Now it's up to the Senate to filibuster the defense bill. Now is the time to take five minutes and email or call your Senator and encourage them to do so. Email addresses and phone numbers are here. I've often said that I try to stay optimistic, but this sort of thing just blows my mind.

9 Comments:

  • At 9:39 AM, Blogger spiral said…

    Aaarrrrgghh! Just what we need: cuts to all of our social programs but more defense spending and more environmental degradation. Oh and yeah, and then there are the people affected by the hurricanes who our federal government won't give loans to for rebuilding or repair--82% have been denied because they don't meet the government criteria, and the government won't change it--but maybe we can tack on some money to help them with defense spending?!

     
  • At 9:52 AM, Blogger spiral said…

    Okay, I just read an article about all of this, and it makes me even more angry: more cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, student loans, etc. Ah! What's really crazy to me about the ANWR deal is my roommate's mom lives in Alaska, and she says many--most in her opinion, actually--want the drilling, including much of the native population, because of the money it will bring. I was surprised to hear that, and it's still a bit difficult to swallow. Errrrr.

     
  • At 10:59 AM, Blogger lauren said…

    I couldn't even get into all of the spending cuts for valuable (essential!) programs because my head is spinning with this stuff this morning. The really crazy thing is that ANWR doesn't buy us nearly as much oil as the drilling enthusiasts are trying to have us believe. Why not take a different course and force higher fuel efficiency standards? Why not, uh I don't know, conserve our resources? I recently read Robert Kennedy Jr. say: "If we raise fuel-efficiency standards by just one mile per gallon, we save two ANWRs full of oil over the projected 50-year life of the fields. If we raise them 2.7 mpg, that's more than all the oil we import from Iraq and Kuwait combined. If we raise standards by 8 mpg, we don't have to import one drop of Persian Gulf oil into this country. Fuel efficiency is an untapped resource. It's cheap oil."

    Fuel efficiency is obviously not the only answer, but I have a hard time seeing how drilling in a pristine wilderness is. Why are we so short-sighted as a nation?

     
  • At 3:44 PM, Blogger Laurie said…

    I can't even begin to think about this. Calling my senators does no good in N.C. They are rubber stamp GOP kiss-Bush-ass politicians. The only reason I was upset with John Edwards running for v.p. was that I knew it meant we'd lose our only democrat senator.

     
  • At 4:51 PM, Blogger lauren said…

    I hear you Laurie. Isn't it so frustrating how disempowered this stuff can make you feel? I feel especially angered and saddened by this latest attempt to tack so-called special interests (isn't our planet in the interest of every living being by definition?) onto a bill that supports our troops. I think I need a glass of wine tonight.

    Spiral - There's an article posted on the Huffington Post about the threat drilling poses for the Gwinch'in tribal way of life in Alaska. It looks interesting. Maybe if I can get my holiday cards done, I'll have time to read it...

     
  • At 6:25 PM, Blogger Andrea Rusin said…

    I did it!

     
  • At 10:40 PM, Blogger breadchick said…

    Wrote a nice not to Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Kerry (not that I have to worry about them)

     
  • At 11:22 PM, Blogger spiral said…

    Fuel standards. Two words. Two very difficult to grasp words. The info you gave about those slight increases--a gallon or two or three--makes me so very frustrated and GGGGGRRRR A-N-G-R-Y. There are so many simple things that we just let slip by. (Sigh.) I really should go to bed. I hope you enjoyed some wine.

     
  • At 7:36 AM, Blogger lauren said…

    Way to go Andrea and Breadchick! My tack with Kerry and Kennedy in these kind of matters is to simply remind them that their constituents are behind them and want them to fight HARD. :)

    By the time I finished writing out cards and got the baby down for the night, even having a glass of wine seemed to require more energy than I had. So I went to bed early, and I do feel more optimistic this morning.

     

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