Friday, September 22, 2017

FIRST CONTRIBUTION, CAMPAIGN 2018 (TO DEFEAT YOU!)



September 22, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: Personal letter #151 (Yesterday, as I mentioned, was #150.)

Well, well! Late night comedy, no less! Perhaps not as you might have wished. Seth Meyers treated you to a 7-minute roast. Did you watch, I wonder? He did a pretty thorough job of it, going through a good deal of your congressional history and most of your wacky ideas. All in good sport, of course.

On a different note: I made my first contribution today to the effort to unseat you. It was a modest one, but I plan to do what I can on this front. I understand that money talks, and money gets people elected. You have a good base of support. Your Democratic opposition, such as it has been in the past, has enjoyed less in the way of campaign funds. I trust that this time it will be different. I plan to do my part—and will do everything I can to persuade others to do the same.

It’s nothing personal, of course. It’s just that a significant number of your constituents want a representative who has fewer wacky ideas and a greater sense of responsibility to all the people of this district—and all the people of this country. More money means a fairer fight. And maybe, just maybe, voters will make the wiser choice next time.

Hopefully,



Peter Clothier, Ph.D.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

WRITE ME!


September 21, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: Conspiracy

I wonder, did you read the letters in today’s Los Angeles Times, denouncing your embrace of conspiracy theories? A reproof that I have to say is well deserved—as I myself pointed out in an earlier letter. These crackpot theories are wildly off mark, and do no one any good. And incidentally, to blame Obama for everything that goes wrong in the country today is neither fair nor credible.

Speaking of letters, though, this is my 150th to you—all written with care and thoughtfulness, all individual, all hand-signed and hand-addressed. Though we disagree on every issues, my letters do not deal in mud-slinging or personal insult. Their tone is respectful—although sometimes perhaps a little teasing. And all have been written since the Tr*ump inauguration in January. Have you ever received so many unique letters in one year from a single source?

So is it presumptious for me to think that my effort merits some response? I am, after all, a constituent. But I have heard not one word from you, save a handful of boilerplate position statements. I even wrote a letter to your staff, enquiring—politely, I think—what happens to my letters when they reach your office. Again, no response. Not one word.

You are reputed among your constituents to be reluctant to meet with any but those who support you and agree with your opinions. It’s a pretty easy thing, however, to dictate a letter. I would consider it a courtesy.

Respectfully,



Peter Clothier, Ph.D.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

STEALTH HEALTH





September 20, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: Stealth Health

So your fellow Republicans in the Senate are trying to sneak through yet another attempt to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act. Have they not learned by now that the American people want, need, and deserve a health care system that serves their legitimate needs and protects them from disaster? So far as I gather, the “new” bill is just a rewrap of same old tired ideas, adding to the deficit and benefiting no one but those who profit from the misfortune of others.

I heard that House Speaker Paul Ryan already announced that the House would pass the Senate bill, virtually sight unseen—or at least without a cost estimate by the CBO. And I presume that you would go along with that?

How loud do the American people have to shout to be heard on this issue? The dreadful truth is that this bill could actually attract enough Republican Senate votes to pass, with a majority of one—that Vice President’s vote. A bill that is not only absurdly cost-ineffective, but is also totally pointless, unless as an act of sheer spite against the previous president. And the only people who want it are partisan Republican politicians.

If this bill is passed from the Senate back to the House, you should vote against it.

Respectfully,



Peter Clothier, Ph.D.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

TRUMP AT THE UNITED NATIONS

September 19, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: The UN week

The picture on the front page of today’s New York Times shows Trump at the United Nations. He’s seated amid rows of serious diplomats, jaw set, chin raised in its familiar truculent pose. I read somewhere that he does this thinking that it makes him look like Winston Churchill. Some hope! He looks like what he is—a reality show TV star totally out of context and out of his depth in an ocean of complex international problems.

He offered up a mild speech yesterday, acknowledging the importance of the UN but insisting on reform. He has perhaps learned by now that problems such as that presented by the belligerent Kim Jong Un cannot be solved by the return of belligerence. He has tried that, and has ended up looking foolish and powerless. He knows now that he needs the support of the international community to address the problem.

I wonder, though, what he will say today in his scheduled speech? Will he hew to his “America First” line in the face of multiple nations plagued by famine, disease, and violence? I hope that he will be able to dig deep inside and find some semblance of compassion, dignity and generosity of spirit. Given his record to date, my hope is tempered with a healthy dose of skepticism.

What say you, Congressman? Is wealthy America obligated to the rest of the world? Should we embrace that responsibility? Or is it truly “America First”?

Respectfully,


Peter Clothier, Ph.D.


Monday, September 18, 2017

ANOTHER SHAMEFUL ACT IN CONGRESS

September 18, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: SHARE Act

I haven’t been able to verify it, but I think it’s a safe bet that you voted with the majority in favor of the dreadful SHARE Act last week. The so-called “Sportsman and Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act”—heavily sponsored and promoted by the NRA—sneaked in a long-sought easement of the ability to buy silencers for guns. It would also make it easier to buy armor-piercing bullets—as though they were not already currently available for those gun enthusiasts who wish to pierce armor.

All of which opposed by most law enforcement agencies. The pretext for making silencers readily available on the open market is that those poor people who love target shooting are suffering damage to their ears! As though they were unable to wear those sound-canceling ear muffs more sensible people wear on airplanes. Incidentally, the law also allows for the importation of 41 frozen bear carcasses, whose killers had missed the deadline on an importation ban. As Gail Collins wrote in the New York Times last Saturday, “I think we can all agree it’s time the government did something on behalf of rich guys yearning to have the head of an endangered species over the fireplace.”

There are other provisions in the bill, of course, favoring the sale and distribution of deadly weaponry. Important work for Congress, no? At a time when our nation is under threat from Russian interference in our electoral process, amongst other pressing problems.

I wish to state for the record that, as your constituent, I deplore this action. I am quite sure there are many others like me. I only hope they are informed about this misuse of congressional time and power.

Respectfully,


Peter Clothier, Ph.D.


Friday, September 15, 2017

AN ALEX JONES FAN?

September 15, 2017


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: Conspiracy

So, are you now an Alex Jones fan? I see, from a report inthe Los Angeles Times, that you now subscribe to the theory that Charlottesville was a Democratic plot! “It was a setup for these dumb Civil War reenactors,” you’re quoted as saying. “It was the left-wingers who were manipulating them in order to have this confrontation” and to “put our president on the spot.”

Nobody “put him” on the spot, Congressman. If you recall, he stepped right on to it with his absurd statement that both sides were to blame. Then, challenged, he doubled down on the insinuation and even yesterday, so I heard, tripled down on the same vile equivalency, that the American left is no better than Nazis and KKKers. Please! He showed his own colors, willingly. He was not tricked by “left-wingers”!

Whether knowingly or not, it seems you picked up on a conspiracy theory promoted by the widely discredited right-wing extremist, Alex Jones. And did so in a forum (the SF Chronicle, in the article I referred to in my letter yesterday) that you well knew would be publicized. In other words, this could not be considered an off-hand slip of the tongue, but an expression of your true belief.

I have to tell you, Congressman, it’s beyond my belief that you would believe such wicked nonsense.

Respectfully,



Peter Clothier, Ph.D.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

PEANUT BUTTER... AND POLITICS

September 14, 2017

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher,
101 Main Street #380
Huntington Beach, CA 92648

Dear Congressman,

Re: Nice article

Well, I read the long article about you in today’s San Francisco Chronicle, as I imagine you will have also done. It’s a flattering piece, that paints you as a kind of folksy, barefoot, peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich eating surfer guy who swats away criticism of yourself (and the president) as “Bull!” It also notes that you’re a Reagan-esque, conservative, libertarian kind of guy in a Reagan-esque, conservative, libertarian kind of district, and that you will be hard to beat.

I’m sure you will have been quite chuffed with the article, which simply made light of those things that outrage many of your constituents, including your dismissal of the Charlottesville events as inspired by leftist conspirators and of the Russian interference in the 2016 election as “baloney.”  Not mentioned at all was your avoidance of all public contact (or private, I presume) with those who oppose you and wish to have you hear their voice.

The kitchen-counter video that accompanies the article online shows you in your Goodwill bargain-purchased “stained white t-shirt and khakis”—just a harmless, friendly, somewhat kooky regular guy digging into a peanut butter jar.  Good PR for you. I wish that the interviewer who visited you and wrote the article had taken the time to interview some of those you represent. When it comes to serious matters that affect us all (like health care) it’s not about being a good ol’ boy.

Respectfully,


Peter Clothier, Ph.D.


FIRST CONTRIBUTION, CAMPAIGN 2018 (TO DEFEAT YOU!)

September 22, 2017 Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, 101 Main Street #380 Huntington Beach, CA 92648 Dear Congressman, Re: Perso...