A Reader Asks:
Who was on Vice President Cheney's secret energy committee, and does Cheney refuse to tell anyone, even Congress?

Gud Responds:

Great question. Silly Dick Cheney, he thinks he can keep his secrets secret, but forgot about me, the great divine creator of the universe and all-knowing superbeing. Oh well, you can hide, but you can't run ... or something like that.

People have been making a big fuss over the make-up of the Vice President's secret energy policy task force. Many Americans think that it's strange that the Vice President gave a small group of people special access to shape a policy which would hand out huge amounts of government money to energy companies, but that when asked to reveal what kind of people made up that group, the Vice President refuses. They suspect that executives from the same energy companies that will be receiving financial subsidies as a result of the task force's recommendations were members of the task force itself. People who follow this theory are particularly upset because of the fact that many of these executives gave substantial donations to the Bush/Cheney campaign last year. To them, the Vice President's secret energy policy task force looks like nothing more than a cover for bribery of the Bush administration.

Well, never fear. Being Gud and all, I know the true identities of the members Vice President Cheney's secret energy policy task force, and I can assure you that there's no cause for concern. As a matter of fact, there were no energy industry executives on the task force at all! Because Dick Cheney is so concerned about global warming and other environmental issues, he made sure that the task force was made up solely of environmental activists. Leaders from organizations such as the Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, the Nature Conservancy, and Earth First, as well as former Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader himself, were asked to join the task force so that they could give the Vice President advice about how to make the Bush/Cheney energy policy more environmentally friendly.

So why won't Dick Cheney reveal the pro-environmentalist bias of the composition of his secret energy task force? Well, first of all, Dick's a man of principles who strongly believes in the separation of powers as dictated by the Constitution. He believes that it just isn't right for the Congress to take the Executive Branch to task for alleged wrongdoings, which is why he supported the attempt a couple years back to remove President Clinton from office for getting oral sex and not telling the whole country about it.

Second, and even more importantly, the Vice President wants to save the environmentalist members of the secret energy policy task force from embarassment. Truth be told, they made him promise to keep their identities secret. These environmentalists came onto the task force determined to promote their environmentalist agenda, but were blown away by the powerful logic of the Vice President's arguments in favor of a supply-side approach to our nation's energy problems. Dick Cheney's ideas for combatting present-day energy supply fluctuations and environmental crises with oil-drilling and coal-burning programs that would pollute the environment and lead to tiny increases in the national energy supply after a lag time of at least 5-10 years made so much sense to them that even task force member Ralph Nader was convinced. The secrecy is just a matter of image - the environmental leaders would love to openly support the Bush/Cheney administration's plans for oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, but they're afraid of being unfairly judged by the members of their organizations.

Now that I've explained the real reason for Vice President Cheney's stubborn secrecy, it all makes sense to you, doesn't it? Why, that whole energy-industry payoff theory sounds just plain implausible next to the truth. I mean, you'd have to be nuts to draw a connection between the secrecy of the energy policy task force, the pro-industry slant of Cheney's proposals, and the fact that both George W. Bush and Dick Cheney owe their vast personal fortunes to the oil industry in Texas, wouldn't you?


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