Monday, July 21, 2008

Letter From a Senator and Book Club Questions...

A Haitian woman bakes clay 'biscuits' under the Sun May 9, 2008 in the Port-au-Prince slum of Cite Soleil. As the food crisis continues in Haiti, rice and bean prices have increased by some 100 percent according to officials, forcing many to turn to the clay 'biscuits' as a source of food. The clay is mixed with salt and vegetable fat and dried in the sun. AFFP PHOTO/Thony BELIZAIRE.

Did you guys see this picture from Haiti?

I recently wrote to my senators about the global food crisis. I spoke specifically about Ethiopia.

Here is a letter I received today...

Thank you for writing regarding foreign food aid to Ethiopia. I appreciate hearing from you and welcome the opportunity to respond.

Like you, I am committed to helping alleviate the suffering of people living in poverty around the world, and admire your concern for the people of Ethiopia. I believe that in order to remain a leader in the global economy and international affairs, the United States must be willing to promote our interests overseas with many tools, including a robust foreign aid budget that offers relief to the millions of people suffering from poverty and starvation throughout the developing world.

You will be pleased to know that Congress recently approved $1.25 billion in emergency foreign food aid as part of recent supplemental appropriations legislation. This funding is intended to help ease the suffering of people around the world affected by the recent food shortages. Further, the President has requested $1.64 billion in fiscal year 2009 for international development assistance, including $69.8 million for Ethiopia. Please know that I understand your support for increased aid to Ethiopia and will keep your thoughts in mind as the Senate continues to consider funding for international food aid programs.

Again, thank you for writing. I hope you will continue to keep me informed on issues of importance to you. Should you have any further comments or questions, please feel free to contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.

Sincerely yours,
Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

On a lighter topic...

I can't believe how many of you want to do a book club! Woo Hoo! I thought that maybe everyone could just read along with our local Ethiopian Book Club, but maybe we can do something more high tech. Is there anyone out there who has an idea about how to do this? I am not very computer savvy. I think it would be cool to have an online book club chat. Although, isn't the best part of a book club the actual getting together and partaking in libations? Could you guys move here? That's what I would like best.


  1. i'd love to move there. you probably didn't shovel 100 inches of snow off of your long two lane driveway without a snow blower this past winter, did you?

  2. That's pretty rad that your Senator is Feinstein. Mine are....*GAG*... Coburn and Inhofe.

    If I don't keep up with the reading I will certainly write down all the books you guys read and try to follow in your binded-pages footprints. My friend Amber is going to start a blog bookclub as well. So many good books to read and why can't Father Time be a bit more generous?


  3. Very cool Senator you have there!

    Can a gal from Canada be part of the book club...I would really be into an online book club!


  4. Of Course Rana! The more Canadians the better.

  5. what a lovely response from your senator. way more than i'd expect to receive.

    and yes, i forgot to say the other day, i'm down for the book club. i don't know any online programs tho'. i'm not that savvy either.

  6. Wow, I'm so impressed by you! Great idea for the book club, so awesome you wrote to the senator, and I'm so glad you posted that picture from Haiti. The more people that realize even a tiny bit of what is going on just miles away from the shores of US overabundance, the better.

  7. I'll move, too. Humidity sucks.
    (But I would mostly move for you!)

  8. how cool of DiFi. Love her.

    And, hey, I missed the post about the book club.. I wanna be in it!!!!

  9. Cool! Let me know when it starts and if you need any help..although I am not super savvy with technology.


  10. I want to thank you for taking some positive steps forward. By doing something YOU are making a difference. Well done, well done.

    Now if only the US government will ensure that the money is being used to feed those that need it.

  11. DiFi seems cool. Is she in the book club?