An article in yesterday's editions concerning lobbyists on the energy issue reported that the Movement for Economic Justice opposed "energy stamps" for poor people, but failed to note that the group argued in favor of restructuring utility rates to aid the poor. In the same article the name of Garry DeLoss of Ralph Nader's Public Interest Research Group was spelled incorrectly.
Lobbying the energy issue is like singing in a musical stage spectacular - the chorus is loud, but the stars upstage are the ones heard best.
Congress will hear, no doubt, from the same diverse and obscure voices who approached the White House in the weeks when President Carter was putting together his package of energy proposals:
The citizen of Boston who pleaded, "Let's get serious about the energy crisis - cut out night baseball."
The Fuller Brush salesmen, represented by the Direct Selling Association, who warned that gasoline rationing would cripple the door-to-door retailers of America.
The Movement for Economic Justice, which lobbied against the idea of "energy stamps" for poor people.
The Los Angeles County supervisor, James A. Hayes, who urged that solar-energy improvements be exempted from property-tax assessments on homes and buildings.
It is not that any of those people and a small army of others are not listened to. It is merely that, when the show settles down to a serious legislative scenario, other players with louder voices will be much more prominent.
Since virtually every American has a stake in the outcome, the corporate or human consequences, it is obvious that nearly every sector of the econony, from organized labor to the elderly, will tune in on the bewildering array of energy issues.
Here is a short tour, however, of the leading singers, the companies and trade associations and environmental groups which push hardest.
First, there is the "energy left" - a collection of organizations devoted to protecting the environment and their conception of the public interest. Like their opponents, the oil companies, these groups do not always agree on everything among themselves, but their differences are often tactical, not spiritual a matter of which concerns should get the most muscle.
Up front is Ralph Nader's Public Interest Research Group and its chief energy strategist, Barry DeLoss. He has been working congressional energy issues for five years and, like his leader, is deeply skeptical of all oil company claims about depleting reserves, also strongly committed to blocking nuclear energy, and developing solar.
Energy Action is a relative new comer, run by former Kennedy aide Jim Flug and devoted to the goal of breaking up the oil majors' domination, vertically and horizontally. It's financed by several liberal Californians, including actor Paul Newman, and Flug knows how to open doors on Capitol Hill.
Environmental Policy Center has been crippled a bit recently because a couple of its top people were hired away by the Carter administration. The center keeps an eye on coal, pushes strip-mine control and air quality standards. It's lobbyist is John McCormick.
Environmental Action invented the "Dirty Dozen" and, if you are planning a party, do not invite its director, Peter Harnik, and Rep. John J. Rhodes, the Republican floor leader, to the same affair. Rhodes has been a regular on the list. The organization lobbies for utility rate changes and publishes a magazine of the same name which is considered authoritative on environmental issues.
The Energy Policy lash Force is a coalition of consumer labor and environmental interests, represented by Eilen Berman and Former Federal Power Commission Chairman Lee C. White. It is very tough against natural-gas decontrol, arguing that energy costs should be based on the actual cost of its production, not the cost of world oil or other energy sources. White pushed for a national energy corporation several years ago, but the idea did not capture hearts and minds in Congress.
The oil-industry presence in Washington is not exactly a political secret. The American Petroleum Institue has a staff of 500 here. Its directory lists 81 independent representatives from companies and trade associations. These people do not always agree on everything - but it is very seldom that anyone sees them fighting one another in public.
The differences are mostly in style and emphasis. Two companies, for instance, Atlantic Richfield Co. and Standard Oil of Ohio, have been very intense lately on the subject of Alaskan oil prices. Other companies lacing a vast stake in the North slope, tend to be more philosophical on that question.
One major oil company, it is said by White House sources, privately communicated to Carter planners that it favors continued regulation of natural gas. This would put it out of step with the industry line - which favors complete deregulation - but the company reportedly fears that a dramatic surge in interstate gas prices would produce a backlash of tough regulation on the now unregulated gas which it sells within states.
The American Petroleum Institute, of course, is the main tank for the oil major's lobbying, led by former Texas Congressman Frank Ikard and former Nixon energy expert Charles BiBona.
The Natural Gas Supply Committee represents the Major natural gas companies (in all aspects of energy, of course, there is some overlap on who owns whom). David Foster is the top Washington Lobbyist, pushing for deregulation with a budget of more than $600,000.
The Independent petroleum Association of America, headed by Lloyd Unsell, speaks for the "little man" in oil, the independent producers, though naturally many of them are not so little.They want decontrol of oil and gas and many of the same things that their big sisters, the majors, want but their interests are immediately aimd at U.S. oil production first.
These groups are supplemented by other spokesmen and spokeswomen from the oil companies, too numerous to catalogue fully, but here are some highlights.
She Oil, an American affiliate of the Dutch national company, is represented in Washington by the dean of oil lobbyists. Carter Perkins, getting close to retirement, an amiable golfer, well plugged into the delegations from the Southwest producing states. Shell has an interest in rapproachement with Vietnam, where it started to develop oil for the saigon government before its collapse.
Standard Oil of Indiana is largely domestic and therefore, highly interested in government action that affects refining operations. Its representative, Rady Johnson is one of the new-style oil lobbyists who depend more on facts, less on golf.
Texaco is the widely acknowledged hardliner of the industry. On any given issue, it is likely to push a bit less subtly than the other (the industry's opposite to Nader). William Tell, a rising star in the company is the Washington rep.
Mobil, as every newspaper reader and TV watcher knows, is anxious to inform the public on its sensitivities to culture, the arts and oil. As one of the Seven Sisters, it is most anxious about international issues, the anti-Arab boycott legislation and other global matters.
Ashland Oil, though not one of the largest, is among the most aggressive oil companies in pushing its message in Washington. It likes to set up hospitality suites wherever politicians gather and pays for big dinner parties given by lobbyist Harry Williams.
Gulf Oil is a bit more reticent around Washington these days, still living down its illegal political slush fund and the hundreds of thousands of dollars it used to spread around town. Its viewpoint, however, will no doubt be expressed in the proper forums in the coming months.