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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
208.726.8065 Voice
208.726.2329 Fax

Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 


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Gary Carr...The Carr Man!

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For the week of November 14 - 20, 2001

  Opinion Column

Despite war, 
politics as usual

Commentary by PAT MURPHY

While cable news TV is obsessed with war coverage during November Nielsen rating "sweeps" and most Americans are distracted by talk of terrorism, the Bush White House is busy as worker bees with its domestic political agenda that’s receiving only scant attention and comment.

Item: Although President Bush posed as a stalwart of states’ rights in his election campaign, Attorney General John Ashcroft last week made a mockery of Bush’s words: he rebuked Oregon voters by ordering penalties against any physician who assists a suicide allowed under Oregon’s assisted-suicide law, which was approved twice by voters — by 60 to 40 percent the last time. Contradicting Bush’s campaign rhetoric, right-to-lifer Ashcroft believes Washington knows better than Oregon voters. A federal judge has temporarily blocked Ashcroft’s order.

Item: At his confirmation hearings, Ashcroft took pains to assure senators that his rigid conservative views wouldn’t color his judgment. But without any change in federal law or a court hearing, Ashcroft last week preemptively ordered the Justice Department to ignore attorney-client confidences and bug conversations between attorneys and their clients being held in terrorism investigations.

Item: As President Bush lectured the United Nations about the responsibility of nations to join the war on terrorism, the president instructed the United States not to join 165 other nations in Morocco in approving the Kyoto Treaty on global warming. Bush’s declaration that "every nation has a stake" in fighting terrorism doesn’t apply to the United States in the war on climate change, as Bush says, because it would add expense to U.S. industry.

Item: Egged on by oil shortage scare talk from the likes of Idaho Sen. Larry Craig, the Bush White House presses ahead to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for drilling, but ignores energy conservation, rationing or requiring better mileage from vehicles. ANWR reportedly has 10 billion barrels of oil. But Alaska’s other big field — Prudhoe Bay — already has drained 11 billion of its 13 billion barrel reserve in 20 years, according to Randy Udall, of the Community Office of Resource Efficiency. The President doesn’t believe in saving for rainy days: he wiped out the $1.6 trillion budget surplus and now plans to pump out another oil field to satisfy unrestrained gas guzzling consumption.

Easy come, easy go.

About gasoline and oil: Idaho continues to have the reputation of the highest or among the nation’s highest average fuel prices.

For those interested in comparing Wood River Valley fuel prices with other cities around the nation, the American Automobile Association provides an updated daily Internet report (http://www.tuelgaugereport.com) of prices from coast-to-coast.


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.