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MUNDANE DISTRACTIONS
Seeking cloture 
21st-Dec-2005 06:39 pm
So, by luck I woke up early this morning. As usual the first thing I did was surf the news channels so that I could have a nice enjoyable start to my day (that's sarcasm by the way).

I realize that the senate is gonna be working on a defense bill that my friend wehttam777 was writing about the other day. The interesting part of it being a last minute attachment regarding drilling in ANWR (trying to allow it).

By the time I tuned into CSPAN-2 (I can't believe I've actually been watching that thing off and on lately) I think a fair amount of talking was done. I was able to see Senators Maria Cantwell, Joe Lieberman, Ted Stevens (the guy who is being fingered as the main person responsible for the addition of the ANWR piece) and Bill First talk. Other than Senator Stevens everyone spoke very well. I don't know if Senator Stevens isn't a good speaker regularly, but I actually muted the TV and started listening to Bill O'Reilly on the radio. You can call that bias if you want, but I don't think it was.

Anyway, to block a filibuster the senate had to get 60 votes in favor of cloture. They got 54.

I gotta say that I'm happy about this and sad. I'm sad that such an attachment was thrown onto a bill that was created for dealing with making sure funds were getting to our troops and hurricane victims (oh..and a bit for the flu...not sure which kind), but then I again I shouldn't be surprised since this is how things work when special interest groups are allowed to pander for the attention of elected officials. I'm happy because some people were willing to call foul when it counted. There were some rumblings that Democrats might be painted as "anti troop" or "anti support" in this instance (because it's not like they're gonna offer up opinions that you can do that with later) if they kept a filibuster going but I think the folks who spoke for the Democrats made a good point of clarifying that what they were doing had NOTHING to do with the funds for the troops and it was completely about the ANWR addition.

I think the point where Senator Stevens really lost me (and maybe others) is when he kept talking about dependence on foreign oil and how drilling in ANWR might help remedy that, or at least current prices. When it comes to dependency on foreign oil the ANWR thing just isn't gonna cut it folks. It's been said that the U.S. only has 3% of the world's oil on its soil, or underneath it to be correct (lemme know if you have a more current link or study). So, drilling in ANWR to remedy our dependence on foreign oil in my mind amounts to trying to stop an artery from bleeding by sticking a band-aid (or 'adhesive strip' for you Clerks fans out there) on the wound and hoping for the best.

Not to sound too "green" here but what we need to do to stop depending on oil PERIOD. We need to work on the next level of fuel technology NOW. If we're a few generations down the road and we find that we can't do any better than oil (and I'm pretty sure that won't be the case) I think it will be a good thing we saved ANWR, and our decendants can then make the decsion on drilling or not. Hoping to save this current generation a few bucks on gas now (and we don't pay as much as other countries do) is shortsighted and selfish. I think we should plan for the worst case scenario and leave ANWR alone. Besides, if we hold that and drain everyone else then we get more power and money in the future (try that you folks that think with your wallet). Sure, it will go to private corporations but they'll pass the savings along like it was a tax cut (BLAHAHAHA...oh..the humor brings a tear to my eye).

Now it's time to see how this whole thing plays out as Senator Stevens has said he will work right up until News Year's to fight for the drilling.

What a way to enjoy the holiday season.
Emmitt
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