Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Editor's Picks 7/22

Malpractice Scam: The Administration continues to advocate medical malpractice claims caps, despite the fact there is no link between malpractice awards and the cost of premiums to doctors. This disingenuous policy initiative is solely to enhance the profitability of malpractice insurance companies at the expense of the people most seriously in need.

Right-Wing Renzi: Rick Renzi, the Republican encumbent in Arizona's District 1 being challenged by Democrat Bruce Babbitt, whoed his true colors by voting to end U.S. financial support of the UN. Next thing you know, Renzi will voting to study the black helicopters.

Sudan Petition: The DCCC is finally putting some weight behind the Congessional Black Caucus's drive to get the Sudan genocide to the center of American foriegn policy. Sign the petition today.

Billionaires for Bush: A wickedly delicious and humourous protest group, Billionares for Bush, bring fresh wit and street-theater with a very effective rhetorical framing to the campaign to defeat Bush. Watch as they greet Karl Rove at a GOP event and join today.

The Haiti Coup: Evidence has been brought to light that the coup against democratically elected Haitian President Jean Bertrand Aristide was fomented by a network of rightwing Republicans led by personnel from the federally-funded International Republican Institute. Though it comes as no surprise that American fascists are behind the coup, the trail is finally tracable to near the governement.

Filibustering the Filibuster: Following the successful filibuster of Bush's latest activist judicial nomination, Speaker Frist seems prepared to change the Senate rules to prevent the use of the filibuster against Presidential nominations. Sentate Democrats have vowed that the political equivalent of nuclear war will occur if the GOP tries to change 130 years of parlementary precedent used by both parties to block distasteful nominees. Will Frist light the fuse before a contentious election? Next up for Bush's string of unconscionable judicial nominations: William Haynes who played a key role in drafting Defense Department memos justifying the detainment of enemy combatants and setting policy on the treatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison. Is this the sort of person we want on the bench for life?

Bush's Shrinking Base: Military reservists and their families constitute an important potential swing vote this cycle. Millions of these traditionally heavily Republican voters may be up for grabs as Bush's 'stop-loss' orders and policies regarding reserve benefits alienate many. The overlooked swing demographic this cycle may not be Soccer Moms or NASCAR dads, but Reservist's Wives.

Outsourcing Counter-Terrorism: The arrest and trial of Jonathan Idema, an American, in Afghanistan on charges of holding and torturing Afghanis in a private prison may be the tip of the iceberg in the outsourcing of the unsavory business of counter terror operations. Jonathan Idema claims that he was funded and directed by Donald Rumsfeld's office and has the evidence to prove it. Given that the interrogation, and possibly the torture, of prisoners at Abu Ghraib was outsourced to private companies, Idema's allegation is credible.

Bring the Wall Down: The UN General Assembly voted 150 to 6 with 10 abstentions to demand that Israel comply with the ICJ recent ruling that the 'security fence' is illegal and must come down. The United States and Israel were the only major nations to vote against the resolution. Israel has already indicated that it does not intend to comply. Look for a new article on the strategic enviroment shaping Israel's choices regarding the wall here soon.

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