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Chapter 6: Patient Priorities

[…]them.”   “Interesting,” I said. “So the Kochs, Joni Ernst, Jim Inhofe, and perhaps even Lamar Smith, as well as Ryan, Rubio, Labrador and their families, could all be there?”   “Sure, why not? Charles and David Koch seem to have an affinity for the Koch ranches. The Taft Center is about environmentalism and sustainability. The place is readily available and underutilized.”   “Sounds good. Will you look into it?”   “I already have,” Bill replied. “I’ll deal with the planning and logistics. Stay tuned.”   “Maybe Inhofe could fly his own plane there,” Jay said. “And perhaps pickup Lamar Smith on the way.”   “If we invite their families to Centennial Valley – the kids could read Ishmael there,” I suggested.   “Ishmael?” Jay asked.   “A beautiful little book on history, philosophy, and politics. We’ll get to […]

Chapter 11: Delivery and Treatment

[…]on Science, Space, and Technology in 2012-2013, together with Sensenbrenner of Wisconsin, but Lamar Smith got the job.   Mimi Walters, District 45, Irvine; elected in 2014. She’s almost a far right Democrat – she’s to the far left of the GOP Govtrack ideology plot. She has an office in Irvine, about 23 miles north of Issa’s office in Dana Point.   One flight in to John Wayne Airport will get us to Issa, Rohrabacher, and Walters.     Colorado’s therapist will be me. Cory Gardner is the primary patient. The others are:   Mike Bennet, Colorado’s other Senator – a Democrat, but on the conservative end of the Democrat distribution, with a low leadership score. He has an office in Denver. Bennet claims to be targeted by Koch money, even though he is already fairly conservative.   Mike Coffman, Republican, is the District 6 Representative; the district includes Aurora (East Denver suburbs). He has an office in Aurora in the SE Denver metro area. Coffman’s ideology score is the average for Republicans.   “Gardner may be salvageable, in spite of his attention from the Koch apparatus,” I said. “His renewable energy interests merit cultivating. I’ll get to him, Coffman, […]

Chapter 9: Congress

[…]said. “It is a very good paper.”   “Think we could use that Christian Science argument on Lamar Smith?”     He was elected to the House in in 1986 and has been regularly reelected since. He’s always been re-elected with at least 72% of the vote. He was reelected to a 15th term! in 2014 in the still heavily gerrymandered 21st District.   Smith was selected Chair of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology in 2012-2013, beating out Representatives Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-WI).   Just prior to his selection, he said I will promote legislation that encourages scientific discoveries, space exploration, and the application of new technologies to expand our economy and create jobs for American workers.   He is a fan of NASA but doesn’t want it to use its resources to study global warming or climate change.   He had an early interest in science and began as a Physics major at Yale. But as a Yale freshman he says he took a physics class taught by the chairman of the department. … Looking to either side of me, I soon realized that I was sitting next to the future […]

Chapter 12: Outcomes and Tomorrow

[…]conversations with him, and with his quote ‘…it doesn’t hurt to show some empathy’. The Smith staffer I talked with was also a fan of Cornyn.”   “Smith’s district covers the wealthier sections of Austin and San Antonio,” I said. “Did you see anything interesting?”   “Not really, just pictures of him with his first wife, who died, and their two kids, who are now about 37 and 40. I think one’s a lawyer, the other may be an architect – not much info on line.”   “Grandkids?” I asked.   “Don’t know. They don’t seem to be society types. The staffer was quite interested in the chocolates …”   “…they all are,” Bill added.   “…so I gave her several extras. She did say she’d get them to the Congressman. Oh, I did see some award from an NRA-like group, the CCRKBA – he’s definitely an ardent gun supporter.”     Utah                 – Joe:              Lee, Chaffetz + Bishop, Stewart, Love, Hatch, Justice Thomas   “I did get to the BLM Committee meeting in St. George, which Stewart organized with Bishop. Chaffetz was also there. Mia Love didn’t make it.”   “Nor the Senators?” Jay asked.   “Nope. Mike […]

Chapter 7: Supreme Court Justices

[…]based on the nature and status of the planet, the continent, and the nation at that time.   Adam Smith had just published The Wealth of Nations (1776), providing the foundation for a capitalistic ‘guiding hand’ economy. Smith’s first book, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, was published earlier, in 1750, and was intended to provide a foundation, a context, for the Wealth of Nations book, although most people who use and quote The Wealth of Nations are ignorant of the earlier book.   In the late 1700s our new nation wanted to grow, to populate, to prosper. It was vast – land was largely infinite, water was abundant, the skies were clear and the air clean, except in certain areas of certain cities due to coal smoke. There was no such thing as climate change – and certainly no concern or even awareness of planetary issues or constraints. Although farmers and settlers were frugal and resourceful, the national attitude was growth and prosperity – there were no real constraints.   The conservatives of the Roberts Court live and work today largely in the mindset of the late 1700s. The liberals are closer to the realities of the 21st Century. Harmless […]

Chapter 10: Plutocrats – and Others

[…]long subtitle.”   “And since they likely haven’t read it, they probably don’t know that Smith actually covered empathy – something to do with ‘conduct and character’. A 2014 book, The Empathy Exams, cited Smith’s Moral Sentiments discussion.”   “Well, I assume Charles Koch did not read it. But he has read Hayek.”   “Do you think he read the parts that deal with safety nets and social insurance?” I asked.   “Oops, perhaps not. And I’ll bet neither did two other well known Hayek fans: Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher.”   “Is he an Ayn Rand fan?” asked Jay.   Before I could respond, Bill jumped in:   “Wait!  Let me add this cool fact. I was at the post office mailing a package and used a 93 cent stamp – the Flannery O’Conner stamp.”   “So? Who’s she,” Jay asked.   “She’s a fiction author – I didn’t know her so I looked her up.  The web profile said she wrote a letter to a friend saying: ‘Friends don’t let friends read Ayn Rand.’ Her critique was that it’s crappy fiction.”   “I just saw a Times review of Rand’s newest, perhaps her very first book/play, unpublished until […]

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