Saturday, December 11, 2004

For more info on the Iraq War

Juan Cole has a Thursday post on his blog entitled "Rumsfeld, The Military Irrelevance of Fallujah, and Retina Scans" that's great and summarizes some major issues. You can click on the links to the right for his site.

Friday, December 10, 2004

TORT REFORM, you ask?

People were asking about "Tort Reform" at our last meeting. Here are a few paragraphs from Lakoff's "Don't Think Of An Elephant!" that sums it up real nice.

"Tort reform is a top priority for conservatives. Why do conservatives care so much about this? Well, as soon as you see the effects, you can see why they care. Because in one stroke you prohibit all of the potential lawsuits that will be the basis of future environmental legislation and regulation. That is, it is not just regulation of the chemical industry or the coal industry of the nuclear power industry or other things that are at stake. It is the regulation of everything. If parties who are harmed cannot sue immoral or negligent corporations or professionals for significant sums, the companies are free to harm the public in unlimited ways in the course of making money. An dlawyers, who take risks and make significant investments in such cases, will no longer make enough money to support the risk. And corporations will be free to ignore the public good. That is what 'tort reform' is all about.

In addition, if you look at where the Democrats get much of their money in individual states, it is significantly from the lawyers who win tort cases. Many tort lawyers are important Democratic donors. Tort 'reform' -- as the conservatives call it -- cuts off this source of money. All of a sudden three-quarters of the money going to the Texas Democratic Party is not there. In addition, companies who poison the environment want to be able to cap possible awards. That way they can calculate in advance the cost of paying victims and build it into the cost of doing business. Irresponsible corporations win big from tort reform. The Republican party wins big from tort reform. And these real purposes are hidden. The issue appears to be eliminating 'frivolous' lawsuits -- people getting thirty million dollars for having hot coffee spilled on them.

However, what the conservatives are really trying to achieve is not in the proposal. What they are trying to achieve follows from enacting the proposal. They don't care primarily about the lawsuits themselves. They care about getting rid of environmental, consumer, and worker protections in general. And they care about defunding the Democratic Party. This is what a strategic initiative is."

A Great Quote Today...

..from Bill Moyers. (The dude is leaving "Now.")

"I'm going out telling the story that I think is the biggest story of our time: how the right-wing media has become a partisan propaganda arm of the Republican National Committee. We have an ideological press that's interested in the election of Republicans, and a mainstream press that's interested in the bottom line. Therefore, we don't have a vigilant, independent press whose interest is the American people."

Brendan Maiden

The Fix Is In

A nice connecting of the dots by Atrios (a PhD in economics I believe) on how the media is already beating the drums, not to war, but to privatize Social Security. Clearly demonstrates the media bias and the use of "Think Tanks" (read: echo chambers).

For more on how they're making this whole thing up check out Paul Krugman as he breaks it all down. (registration may be required)

Know your enemy people because they sure as hell think they know you.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Howard Dean

Dateline, Yesterday. Howie gave a speech at George Washington University...and spelled out his vision for the Democratic Party. The dude is also campaigning to head the DNC.

His key point? "We cannot win by being 'Republican-lite.' We've tried it; it doesn't work."

You can read the full speech here.

Brendan Maiden

The future of the DNC

Nice piece by Arianna Huffington worth reading. Not going to shake your world, but simply outlines the battle and gives some key names to keep an eye on.

The Next DNC

A nice companion piece to the one below, in terms of talking about the direction of the party. Thanks to Galecki for turning me on to this.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

A Fighting Faith

An very interesting article in The New Republic that I'd like to discuss at our next meeting.
Please read so we can spend some time on the subject. Just click below.

Fighting Faith


A new term

I accidentally invented a new term the other day, but it's succinct and kind of fun to say!

When referring to those gentlemen that are running and ruining our country and the war, you can spare yourself a couple of words and just say "CHUMSFELD".

Try it, it's fun.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Read this Brandoland Post

December 7th -- absolutely fantastic.
I hate these god damn hypocrites.