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Campaign Reform and Enron Fiasco

January 23, 2002

Regarding the Jan. 18 front-page article indicating no congressional committee investigating the Enron scandal could muster a majority if campaign contributions from Enron or Andersen disqualified them: I would think this should raise a lot of questions.

Should we have to be concerned about whether a politician can honestly investigate campaign contributors? How can the public respect any investigation under these circumstances? If not this, just what will it take to convince voters campaign finance reform is not only necessary but a prerequisite to responsible government?

John Patrick "Pat" Ormsbee

Newport Beach

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Re "As Questions Get Louder, Cheney Stays Silent," Jan. 18: Your article reported charges that there are "at least 17 policies in the White House energy plan that are virtually identical to positions Enron advocated." If the advice and wisdom so generously shared by Enron bears fruit, the California energy fiasco may prove to be a best-case scenario for future energy crises.

Michael Schelske

Santa Monica

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Re "A Scandal So Good It Hurts," Commentary, Jan. 18: I don't often agree with John Balzar, but he's right on about what we've let ourselves become. I was thinking the same thing as I watched a woman feed her kids plums and fresh peas from the vegetable bins at the supermarket--being very explicit in showing them how to pop open the pea pods! As Balzar says, we've devalued simple and honest things completely yet are surprised and outraged that our corporations and institutions reflect the same dishonesty. It can't be otherwise--we can't be more than the sum of our parts.

Nancy Callahan Hinderer

Granada Hills

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