This interaction between Congressman Shimkus and Secretary Moniz took place during a the Energy and Commerce Committee FY2015 DOE budget hearing on April 3, 2014. It’s too bad that hearings like this have strict time limits imposed on the questioners.
There is a good reason why I would be exceedingly reluctant to accept any kind of political appointment. This video shows how painful it can be to follow politically imposed marching orders that are in direct violation with the oath of office taken by public servants to uphold and defend the constitution, including obeying duly implemented laws.
I remain convinced that there is more to the effort to halt Yucca Mountain than just keeping used nuclear fuel out of Nevada. It probably has more to do with implementing the High Level Waste section of the antinuclear strategy document developed and agreed to during the Conference for a Nuclear Free 1990s held in April 1991.
- Continue to stall until Congress gives up on the repository program and the progress grinds to a halt
- Recognize that DOE itself is responsible for delays in characterizing the Yucca Mountain site
(Aside: It looks like the antinuclear activists found a better way to implement their strategy. They worked long and hard to create a situation where they could take over and DOE and ensure that delays would be imposed. End Aside.)
- Acknowledge that Yucca Mountain is not suitable, will not be found suitable, and cannot be licensed in accordance with 10 CFR Part 60 (“the only science in the system is political science”)
- Store spent fuel onsite using dry cask storage containers, while society rethinks its approach for HLW disposals
- Reject efforts by the Nuclear Waste Negotiator to negotiate an agreement for siting the repository
Please – can anyone explain to me how an aging Senator from a geographically large state (number 7 on the list of states by geographic area) with such a low population density (number 42 out of 50) that it only has 6 out of 535 votes in the Electoral College has accumulated so much power than he can make the entire country dance on the strings that he manipulates? Why have Reid’s colleagues elected him to the position of power that he apparently holds? Why can’t any of them tell him to go pack sand?
As Shimkus asked Secretary Moniz (as the representative of the President), “Where in the law is a “consent-based” approach?” It sounds nice, but did President Obama think a “consent-based” approach would work for the Affordable Care Act, vehicle mileage standards, or new emission standards? Living and leading in a democracy means following the rules agreed to by the majority of the people’s representatives, not by picking and choosing which rules seem convenient at decision time. That is especially important for people who are supposed to serve the public, not their puppet masters.
(I have my theories on the underlying sources of Reid’s power, but I would like to hear yours.)