Congressman Make Money on Legislation (KS-District 1)

Friends,

I am John Doll, Democrat for Congress, Kansas District 1. I wanted to write just a few thoughts this afternoon on the subject of - who should our congressmen represent?

Today, as I filled up my car with gas to head out for a week of campaigning across our large congressional district - I couldn't help but notice the many regular folks filling up in readiness for their work weeks too. Filling the gas tank is a major expenditure that many families are finding too difficult to afford.

I consider the cost of gasoline and I ask: Are our congressmen making thousands of dollars on the legislation that they enact? Do their votes translate into personal profits for them?

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How Can We Lose?

...If the increased price of oil has already given the owners of Iraq's oil reserves a $496 billion profit by holding Iraq's oil production off world markets, then the same reasoning holds that continuing to control Iraq's future production will be tremendously profitable as China and India become larger users of the world's dwindling supply...

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Globocops of energy security

...The "what is next?" has been asked over the past five days by many energy experts. The biggest worry now is that Israel's two-fronted bombardment will draw in the Syrians and Iranians into an oil-gutted conflagration stretching from Tel Aviv to Kashmir...

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A pharmaceutical view of the Middle East crisis

Bin Laden's career as a terrorist was born in a previous destruction of Lebanon.  I keep thinking of the wonderfully generous and kind Lebanese people I've known while reading report after report of death and bombs.  I hope their families are okay.

I have friends over in Israel right now working on an independent movie.  They tell me the Israelis are extra nice to them because they have the balls to be there during this time.  They say the interviews they're getting for their documentary are especially passionate.

There's all kinds of ways to look at this conflict.  Israeli overkill could be compared to the over reactions of post traumatic stress to be expected in a country haunted by a rather recent Holocaust.  In nature when something tiny is surrounded by hostile competitors it usually develops some particularly nasty venom or sting to be left alone.  

Then there's simply oil, the American need to dominate oil, and Israel's usefulness to us in doing the dirty work we can't.   And of course you can't leave out cultural differences like female liberation and economic hostilities, even demographics: the Arab world has a majority of young males, and they have little opportunity.

But in reading the descriptions of the Israeli attack I was struck by something else.  

I'm one of those people that doesn't trust the AMA at all.  I think of them as being like the inquisition, and once they get in your brain you're in for a lifelong struggle.   I have my collection of witch doctors, sophisticated herbal specialists, Chinese masters with healing secrets, and so far so good.  But most people in America are creatures of the AMA taking AMA pills and thinking the AMA way.  

Pharmaceutical corporations spend more money than anyone else lobbying our politicians.  

The Israelis talk about cleaning up the mess.  They're going to cut out all the cancer of terrorism in Lebanon.  Yes, they admit, they will cause collateral damage, but what else can be done to save the patient?  The root causes of the social disease that is terrorism are ignored entirely in favor of a radical, expensive, and destructive solution that only creates more disease.  

How many times can a country do this before realizing it doesn't work?  Seduced my new more precise and powerful weaponry and by the mirage of better spying our governments seem to think hitting them harder is the way.  Just like an AMA doctor killing a patient with surgeries, new drugs, and radiations.

Trying to demoralize a whole nation to kill their will to fight against you and preoccupy them with simply surviving is a good way to breed terrorists, the human equivalent of cancer cells.  By killing the cancer they make more cancer.  The Israelis, the Americans, and the AMA.  The AMA is not big on preventive medicine.  Preventitive medicine is the best kind though.  

We need some holistic doctors on the case.  We need to look at the roots of the disease.  We have to restore sanity to our societies.  We need to change the habits of a whole lot of people.  Get them thinking in new ways.  That's where real healing comes from.  

Globalization is either going to bring a future where the rich use military power to brutally surpress and exploit the poor, or it's going to bring a second Enlightenment, when we use our superior intelligence technology to study and implement ways of fairly distributing self sustaining and renewable resources.  Hereditary dictatorship or intelligent management, do we still have a choice?  

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Republicans Push for More Drilling; It's All They've Got

With oil prices topping $75 per barrel and gasoline costing consumers more and more at the pump, Republicans in Congress know they have to do something or else face the wrath of voters in November. But what is their only solution to the energy crunch? More drilling, of course! Jim Snyder has the story for The Hill.

Four Senate committee chairmen will suggest new energy legislation to GOP leaders by next week, as negotiations continue over a bill to allow more drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, a high priority for business lobbyists.

[...]

Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, is pushing for a small bill limited to opening oil and gas drilling in an area known as Lease 181, in the eastern gulf. An aide said the senator believes the bill is the quickest way to expand fuel supplies and ease prices.

Americans have seen the drilling-first energy policy of the Bush administration and the Republican Congress in action for several years now, and by and large they have come to the conclusion that it is a wholly failed strategy. According to a recent Gallup poll, when asked who they believe "would do a better job of dealing with" gas prices, Americans favor  Democrats in Congress over Republicans in Congress by a staggering 52 percent to 22 percent margin. A CBS News poll conducted in June found that just 18 percent of Americans -- and just 12 percent of independent voters -- approve of how George W. Bush is handling gas prices.

Energy and gas prices are big winning issues for the Democrats. And if Pete Domenici and the rest of the Do Nothing Republican Congress believe that they can win back some voters with more of the same -- another piece of legislation authorizing drilling for oil -- they are terribly mistaken.

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