This Week in the LA Progressive: 2 May to 8 May 2010

wall street crashOn The Use of “Teabagger.” Whether the GOP and its militant wing like it or not, they are Teabaggers. Theirs is the Teabag Movement. And this country is in deep trouble if they win. The Teabag Party/GOP oppose equality for women and gays — more than a few have said to me that despite their admiration for gun-totin’ TV star Sarah “Pitbull with Lipstick” Palin, they believe all other women should “get back in the kitchen.” Natalie Davis

DeMint Introduces Border Security Amendment To Derail Financial Regulatory Reform. Last week, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) said that President Barack Obama “thinks Americans are stupid” for trying to “convince” voters that Republicans are trying to obstruct financial reform. It turns out that DeMint is the one who is insulting the intelligence of the American people by suggesting that Republicans aren’t pulling every stop to try to derail a bill that has receivedwidespread public support. Andrea Christina Nill

michael heckuva job brownMainstream Media Swoon Over Rove’s Power Play. Karl Rove — chief political architect of George W. Bush’s presidency, the worst in modern history — is reentering frontline Republican Party politics. And the narrative-defining mainstream media have wasted no time in portraying Rove’s return as the most momentous development since Tiger Woods nearly re-mastered the Masters. Michael Sigman

After the Flood. I have coworkers and even a relative who have likely lost their homes. Most Tennesseans, as this article outlines, do not have flood insurance. As a result, most of us will be denied by our insurance companies for not having coverage we were either prohibited from purchasing (if one does not live in an official flood plain) or were told we did not need. K. Danielle Edwards

Britain’s Got Talent Election “Hung” by Preposterous Procedure. The only thing missing was Simon Cowell sneering and sighing last night. Welcome to déjà vu all over again. The UK seeks to one up Florida’s 2000 election with the specter of a hung Parliament, charges of polling site malfeasance, and strict, almost slavish adherence to procedure over common sense. Denis Campbell

gaslandThe (Almost) Crash of Wall Street. Ninety minutes before the end of the trading day today, the U.S. stock market almost melted down The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped nearly 1,000 points. The market regained ground before the end, like a giant 747 narrowly averting a crash landing, but the questions of the day are: What happened? And what does it mean? Robert Reich

Michael Brown Spins the Gulf Oil Spill Catastrophe. So that’s what our political discourse has sunk to? Discredited figures like Brownie are on TV jockeying for partisan gain, milking a national tragedy that is probably going to change forever the ecosystem of the Gulf Coast? Brownie uses a catastrophe that threatens many of the nation’s most important waterways and will probably be a grave setback to any national economic recovery to score pitiful political points against the Democrats? Who are these people? Joseph Palermo

GasLand Pokes Holes In “Clean” Natural Gas. Almost unnoticed in the haze of big oil’s petro-fumes, GasLand explores how the natural gas industry’s push to drill more wells may be responsible for as much environmental harm to individual people as big oil is to the globe. Charley James

Speaker Pelosi and the Revival of Progressive Politics in America. Yet Ronald Peters’ and Cindy Simon Rosenthal’s just-released book, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the New American Politics , shows that Nancy Pelosi played a far greater role than is realized in reviving progressive politics after the disappointing 2004 defeats. Pelosi shaped the Democrats message, framed attacks on Bush and the Republican Party, maintained party unity and then delivered for progressives after becoming Speaker in 2006. Nancy Pelosi is not only the most powerful female politician in United States history, but she may also be the most effective progressive national elected official of her time. Randy Shaw

chely wright

Chely Wright

Information Terrorists Hijack Our Airwaves. While Obama has done an admirable job ignoring the Tea Party outbursts and outlandish claims and focusing on moving his agenda forward, Maddow, Matthews, Olbermann, Colbert, Stewart, Cooper, Crowley, Sanchez and Shultz have missed an incredible opportunity to vocalize the progressive agenda while they have the floor. For eight years, progressives were unable to bring their agenda to the table and had to constantly act on the defensive. Nomiki Konst

Getting The Country Music’s Chely Wright Comes Out, Joins Faith in America. Wright has been on the country music scene since 1994, and professionally she worried about her career as an out lesbian, stating, “No one like me in country music has ever admitted his or her homosexuality.” While it is true that K.D. Lang was an out lesbian in Country Music, she eventually moved out of the genre into Pop, leaving many to speculate she did so because of her sexual orientation. Rev. Irene Monroe

Apple Isn’t the Problem; Wall Street’s Big Banks Are the Problem. So why is the FTC nosing around Apple and not around Wall Street? Because the Federal Trade Commission Act allows the agency to stop “unfair methods of competition” almost anywhere in the economy except in the financial sector. Banks are explicitly excluded. Another reason for financial reform. Robert Reich

Happy Cinco de Boycott!. A sore spot among Latinos has long been that America accepts our cultural best while openly vilifying us in general. Salsa has long replaced ketchup as our country’s favorite condiment. Suburbanites love the hard work ethic that is embedded in our cultural DNA and that they so readily hire. Tierra, Shakira, Ricky Martin, Eve Longoria, Raquel Welch, Vicky Carr are loved. Yet these same people are conflated by the media with drug smugglers and terrorists. The disconnect is painfully irritating and quite frankly politically and socially unsustainable. Mario Solis-Marich

Arnold Swartzenegger

Image by d_vdm

AB2727 – The Bradford/Bass Re-Entry Employment Opportunity Act: Addressing The Lifelong Challenges of Ex-Offenders (Not A Minute Too Soon). If California is serious at reducing its prison costs, ex-offenders will have to be re-trained and employers will have to be more tolerant of people trying to get their lives back on track. Is that even possible? One thing about American culture, as it relates to any offender, is that despite we profess to being a forgiving society, or want to redeem the best in those who have made mistakes, the truth of the matter is that it always lets the ex-offender know that they are just that, “ex-offenders.” Anthony Asadullah Samad

Call for Social Networking Reports on Deepwater Horizon Oil Impacts. Social networking may turn out to be the first line of defense against public relations spin by providing real time gathering of data on the massive river of oil flowing into the Gulf of Mexico from the Transocean/Deepwater Horizon well explosion. Maps generated by satellite and “predictions” are only so valuable. One of the tenets of remote sensing is that “ground truthing” be a mandatory part of the equation. Truth is the operative word here as Gulf Coast residents face an unprecedented environmental disaster. Georgianne Nienaber

Native American Suggests He Was Profiled By Arizona Police: ‘New Bill Targets People Of My Color’. It’s also worth noting that a study by the ACLU on racial profiling in Arizona found that “while African-Americans, Latinos, Native-Americans and Asian-Americans are more likely to be stopped and searched by law enforcement on suspicion of carrying contraband, whites were actually more likely to be carrying contraband.” Andrea Nill

Drill-Baby-Drill Off Shore. A Prescription for Environmental Disaster. Fortunately, President Obama showed common sense by placing a hold on newly proposed off shore-drilling plans while an investigation into the disaster is underway. Congress should reconsider the lifting the currently proposed offshore drilling ban and protect our coastal waters for our future generations. Tracy Emblem

goldman sachsGetting The Voters Out for “Yes on Proposition 15″. Proposition 15 on the June ballot will change the way we finance election campaigns so politicians stay focused on the job we sent them to do! Prop 15 gets participating politicians out of the fund raising game and back to solving California’s problems. Wayne Williams

Downsizing the Prison-Industrial Complex. California’s obsession with incarceration — at $50K a year per adult, $250K per juvenile — is unsustainable, says criminologist Barry Krisberg. Cathy Cockrell

The Birthers Ruined Schwarzenegger’s White House Chance. The Republicans siding with the Birthers and generally ramping up of the anti-immigration sentiment, are shooting themselves in the foot. And not just with Latino voters. Schwarzenegger is by far the most popular and (gasp) competent of any other candidates vying for the nomination in 2012. Tina Dupuy

Friday Feedback: Fighting Over Scraps. I saw a great sign downtown today in the Immigration Reform March, “Jose didn’t take your job — Goldman-Sachs did.” It is time that those who are having a hard time began to show the courage to blame the ones who have really trampled on them: Goldman-Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Bank of America, Chase, Exxon, BP, and the filthy rich who didn’t get that way by doing the work

Alert! George Will Speaks the Truth (Sometimes). Democrats pushed health care reform, according to Will, because of liberals’ tendency to “lunge to maximize government growth.” Presumably, it was irrelevant that insurance companies were acting like bandits, taking policy-holders’ money and then withholding services when people got sick, and that millions of Americans were dying prematurely because they didn’t have access to quality medical care. Ron Wolff

Getting Voters Out for “Yes on Proposition 15″. Proposition 15 on the June ballot will change the way we finance election campaigns so politicians stay focused on the job we sent them to do! Prop 15 gets participating politicians out of the fund raising game and back to solving California’s problems. Wayne Williams

The Rebirth of Regulation. What do oil giant BP, the mining company Massey Energy, and Goldman Sachs have in common? They’re all big firms involved in massive plunder. BP’s oil spill is already one of the biggest and most damaging in American history. Massey’s mine disaster, claiming the lives of 29 miners, is one of the worst in recent history. Goldman’s alleged fraud is but a part of the largest financial meltdown in 75 years. Robert Reich

Oily Birds and Other Atrocities. How ever will they justify continued off-shore drilling in light of what is now happening in the Gulf of Mexico? In just a few short days we’ve gone from a tragedy to a disaster to a full-blown catastrophe. It will be more than interesting to see the depths to which the right wing will now stoop in order to trivialize this hideous event. Rush Limbaugh is already floating the idea out to his half-witted “Dittoheads” that this was sabotage on the part of the “eco-nazis”; that some unnamed environmental organization plotted this disaster in order to further their evil socialist agenda. Tom Degan

How Wars Are Born: China vs. the U.S. Behind the military jockeying for power are economic interests. Controlling the U.S. economy are powerful corporations, who rely on the U.S. military to ensure them super profits overseas, including domination over whole regions — the Middle East, Latin America, the Pacific — that are viewed as the “exclusive economic zones” of U.S. corporations. The fact that China is now declaring itself master of its own zones is intolerable for U.S. corporations, which will stop at nothing — including war — to maintain U.S. military dominance over the globe. Shamus Cooke

No Goldman at the End of the Rainbow? Marxist socialism may be dead, but perhaps what Marx called capital’s internal contradictions, illustrated beautifully by the desperation of Goldman and other mega-corporations for short-term profits may, by strengthening the case for fundamental financial reform, bring us closer to a more livable world. Michael Sigman

What in the Sam Hill Is Wrong with Arizona? I don’t know what it is exactly about Arizona, but I do know that the state needs to be boycotted like a Montgomery bus. That state must realize that you cannot treat any group of people as lesser than the rest, nor can you disrespect the country’s largest minority group and expect to emerge unscathed. There must be a price to pay this time, and what better place to start than with the Arizona economy? When an Arizona lawmaker wants to boycott his own state, you know how bad it is. David A. Love

Sarah Palin v. Bill Moyers. Take the Survey. Bill Moyers 4,889. Sarah Palin 1,543,755. So what’s this, you ask? It certainly isn’t the scorecard for some ridiculous game. Nor is it their annual salaries: Sarah Palin probably makes more than that. Sharon Kyle

Further “Finds” in the Video of T-People Acting Badly Toward an Old Guy Afflicted with Parkinson’s. With all that snapping and unsnapping and re-snapping going on, how could a person who was never quoted as saying either “I apologize,” or “I am sorry.”—and never said either directly to me, or to the millions of Americans whom his pure ugliness offended, or to the millions of people around the world who count on America as a symbol of relative decency in a sea of that same ugliness he exhibited—how could he even begin to claim to have been sincere in his apology? And wouldn’t an insincere apology be oxymoron? Bob Letcher

Boston Tea PartyAt Long Last, Obama’s Going Bush. The tea baggers had finally encroached on, and engulfed, the mainstream of the Grand Old Party. As John McCain cringed the other day in Arizona, the running mate he made famous, Sarah Palin was re-filling her 15 minutes of fame card. (McCain cannot stop making the same deal with the devil he made that put her on the ticket in the first place) She gave her “ich bin ein Tea Partyer” spiel… dragging the desperate old maverick along with her. He made no mention of his promise of no cooperation with the Democrats for the rest of the year – perhaps because he had already fulfilled that promise in the first part of the year. Robert Illes

To the Tea Party: War and Liberty Aren’t Fellow Travelers. The tea sippers extended their pinkies in a salute to torture, harsh policies toward Iran, and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. They didn’t seem to mind the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping and vacuuming up of ordinary Americans’ phone calls either, according to Bovard. Yet of all the causes of big government in human history, warfare is the most important. The nation-state originally came into being because wars had become too expensive for mere kingdoms to handle. Ivan Eland

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *