February 11, 2012
Dear SEC Commissioners,
Please do not give in to industry pressures on Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Act (the Cardin-Lugar Amendment) - and make sure that ALL companies are covered, every country and every project gets reported, and loopholes that would allow large sums of money to go unreported are closed.
As a U.S. Army veteran of our Global War on Terror, my family and I have been impacted and have seen the impact of our national policies concerning energy. Our country has fought two wars in Iraq, and thousands of American fighting men and women have died. Why do we insist on letting our oil companies operate in ways average citizens (who sometimes fight and die to protect our interests) cannot? As a taxpaying citizen, I am not entitled to keep my profit-making activities secret. I am required by law to disclose every dollar I make to the U.S. Treasury, as is every other citizen in this country. Likewise, law requires any politician or political party who receives any money from me or any other citizen to disclose my contributions. These laws are in the interest of fairness and good government. It is morally wrong to allow different laws and principles to be applied to different parties. Our nation opposes differing principles in authoritarian and totalitarian regimes, as favoritism supports oppression. Why would we allow this in business? We must not. My taxes are affected by policies that govern oil companies, and lives are risked and lost by our men and women in uniform who are called upon to support our nation. Be assured this policy will have economic consequences which may result in a role for our military abroad - it has in the past, and the past is the best predicter of the future. It may not be Iraq next time - it could be somewhere in Africa, where our military presence and footprint grows larger every month. I ask for the same fairness and openness which every citizen in our country is required to obtain and uphold. Do not allow ANY oil companies to make secret deals with our government's support - there's more than tax dollars to consider here. Those of us in uniform, who have sworn to protect and defend our country and its Constitution, are the ones who may bear the brunt of any ill-advised policies such as allowing corporate secrecy. Ultimately it affects ALL of us.