First, Some context:

One of my oldest friends challenged me on Facebook to do the ALS Icebucket Challenge. I mentioned this to mk and he suggested that instead of dumping water on our heads, people should be writing their congressman and asking for increased funding to the NIH.

Many people will do the Ice Bucket challenge, make a small donation and feel as though they've done their part -which for ALS, they have. But meanwhile, labs across the country are shutting down because they cannot get adequate funding.

I wrote my congressman David Price (who sits on the Appropriations Commitee a letter (Unfortunately, I didn't save it) saying something to the effect that "I took the Ice Bucket challenge and that while I think it's nice to raise awareness for ALS, the real problem is that the NIH is underfunded. Labs across the country are shutting down and I would like you to pledge to support increased funding for the NIH." --Making it VERY CLEAR that I wasn't writing about ALS funding, but rather funding for the NIH.

It seems clear from his letter that my letter was simply thrown in to what was no doubt a very large pile of ALS Ice Bucket letters. Below is his automated response.

Kind of Lame. [Edit] -But further research shows that he has been a staunch supporter of the NIH. Good on him.

I think hootsbox has had better luck with his direct communications from his congressman.


Go to a town meeting. They're fun to derail.

Back when Jay Inslee was my congressman, I went to a town hall meeting. He asked a group of like 30 of us (everybody who showed up) what our primary concerns were.

I said "a livable minimum wage."

He sorta stared at me like I was from Mars, then stammered a little, and said "I'm not really hearing a lot of discussion about that."

I said "you should be. It's one of the most important factors in economic prosperity."

He kinda stared at me again and then brought things around to his pet project, The Apollo Alliance.

That was 2006. He's governor of Washington now. Guess what.

posted by thenewgreen: 1499 days ago