Bill Leighty Letter of Endorsement
Friends, 19 Nov 05
I met candidate Bruderly at a hydrogen conference in Munich in Sept '00. We see each other at hydrogen events about once a year. He's an engineer, so would bring that much-needed perspective to Congressional decision-making. I will send him some money. He ran for US House in '04, lost, but was encouraged by his race. He's obviously trying again.
While you may not like his partisan rhetoric, or his glib "... removal of American troops from the Iraqi theatre of operations, in a responsible manner ", we need to heed Senator J. William Fulbright's advice, from his 1966 book, "The Arrogance of Power":
"To criticize one's country is to do it a service and pay it a compliment. Criticism is more than a right; it is an act of patriotism, a higher form of patriotism, I believe, than the familiar rituals of national adulation."
There's no easy or "right" way out of the Iraq mistake, for anyone representing the USA. That does not mean that we must silently or supportively accept the status quo, retreat from criticizing "one's country" and those who currently govern it.
It's painful, but probably necessary, for us citizens to watch our national government in such bitter disagreement, while we re-examine our concepts of patriotism, loyalty, and ethical principles. Congresswoman Jean Schmidt probably made a mistake. We all make mistakes, though we try to avoid the dangerous and egregious ones. But, I'm afraid she speaks for millions. We can all change our minds, though. That's a major feature of being human. Maybe we can prevent such national and global tragedies in the future. But the process of changing our hearts and minds is often arduous; that's what we're suffering through now, as many people around the world consequently suffer our suffering.
Supplying USA's energy entirely from indigenous, benign, renewable sources is technically and economically within our grasp, probably within 30-50 years. That would prevent a lot of territorial, competitive, and truculent behavior on our country's part. It would save us from the more extreme consequences of global warming and global climate change. With the $200 billion -- at best -- we'll probably spend in Iraq, we could have built enough new electric transmission lines and hydrogen pipelines, bringing enough of the large, stranded, renewable energy resources of the Great Plains to distant markets, to supply about half of our country's entire energy demand. That's the equivalent energy of more than all the oil we now use, domestic and imported. What a missed opportunity.
I'll keep working on the "indigenous, benign, renewable sources" vision, my current "Beyond War" project.
Thanks for your ear, for your part in the struggle.