PORKBUSTERS UPDATE: So I made the call I suggested other folks make, calling my Congressman (Jimmy Duncan) to ask if he would be willing to forego some local pork (either the specific items identified earlier in this post or something else, maybe from this Knoxville News-Sentinellist) in order to fund Katrina relief.
I spoke to his budget analyst, who promised me a swift response -- by postal mail, as they don't do email. Hmm. I know that franked mail is "free," but it's not as cheap as email -- I think I just figured out another way for the Congress to save some money. . . .
UPDATE: Reader Jim Ewing emails:
Just tried sending Congressperson Duncan an email to reinforce that it might be a good idea to respond to you via e-mail.
From your "Jimmy Duncan" link, I got his page on the house.gov site. The contact menu button took me to the "write your representative" page of the site. This asked for my zip, which is in Georgia. So it get a prompt to inform me that my zip precludes me from sending a him an email. So the email barrier operates bidirectionally, in a way that would make Franz Kafka blanch with envy.
I think it's safe to say that Rep. Duncan has no ambitions toward nationwide office. However, this seems to be a function of the House's lame email setup which requires a ZIP+4 to send an email.