Program Notes for Left Out January 25, 2005

Left Out is a public affairs program produced by WRCT 88.3FM that discusses the news from a perspective left out of the mainstream media. Left Out is co-hosted by Bob Harper and Danny Sleator. Today's program is produced by Molly Meyer. Listeners are welcome to call us at (412) 268-WRCT (9728), or send us email.


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"Liberal Bias" at the Tartan

David Horowitz claims that the refusal by former Tartan editor Mark Egerman to run an ad for his latest book is an example of "liberal bias" in American universities. The Tribune-Review agrees. Richard Mellon Scaife pays the bills for both of them.

Condi Rice Nomination Hearings

Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) was the only one asking really hard questions of Condoleeza Rice in her testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. But even she shied away from making the two obvious, uncontestable points:

These two simple facts make it an absolute no-brainer that this nomination should go down. So it's even even more remarkable that there were only two votes against the nomination on the committee. Something is getting to the Democrats.

The Perils of Live TV

A Fox news anchor did a live interview with Judy Bachrach (editor of Vanity Fair) during their "Four Days of Festivities" coverage of the Presidential Inauguration Here's the interview.

This episode was, of course, an extreme anomaly.

Courting Disaster

In addition to controlling majorities in both houses (and can seemingly count on democrats to support their agenda -- see the story above) and the mainstream media, the White House is working hard get a death grip on the courts. This article by Glenn Scherer discusses the process by which their working to get control of the courts, and what this might mean.

What Were they Thinking?

On January 20th, the NYTimes published this article about a poll showing that people do not believe that Bush's economic or foreign policies are working, or that we're heading in the right direction. Yet they just re-elected him. One interpretation is that the electorate was bamboozled by the right-wing spin machine. Now that it's spun down a bit post-election, people are realizing that the country and world are in a huge mess because of this stupid jackass. Another interpretation is that the fools vote based on who they "like", rather than on the merits.

More on Social Security

Check out this article by Rick Perlstein from the Village Voice.

Among many good observations, he points out that once everybody's retirement benefits are tied to the the stock market, this then allows a new class of arguments to be made against any of a broad range of progressive causes. Just point out that it is "hurting your retirement". It applies to things like minimum wage, environmental regulations, corporate taxes, etc. Anything that "hurts" corporate America is bad for your retirement.

Most good games have the property that once you start to get ahead, your advantage increases. This is true in Chess and in Monopoly, just to name two examples. It's beginning to look like the Bush junta has reached that point. The media is firmly under control (witness CBS firing 4 people for one possibly bogus but mild anti-Bush story), congress is firmly under control (even most democracts are voting for losers like Rice, and impeachment of anybody is out of the question), and the justice department is about to be headed by a Bush crony who advocates torture, and breaking international law (thus eliminating any possible justice dept investigations into anything in the administration).

In a democracy, we're supposed to vote out the bad guys. But that can't happen because of the media -- people have no idea what's really going on. So being pessimistic, maybe people will only find out the damage done when they start to see it in their own lives. Like if the standard of living goes down drastically. Of course there will always be other boogymen to blame, and if the public remains as gullible as they have been lately, this will be easy to pull off.

Bernie Sanders on the decline of US Manufacturing

Bernie Sanders (an independent congressman from Vermont) prepared this scathing note about the decline of US manufacturing, and Bush's do-nothing attitude about this.

After pointing out how impossible it is to buy anything not made in China, Sanders writes:

While the stark reality of America's industrial might moving abroad may have escaped the president and his economic advisers, a growing number of members of Congress see with their own eyes the devastating effect that the president's trade policy is having on manufacturing jobs in their own districts. It's high time that Congress brought the president down to earth, and made him understand that our current unfettered free trade policies have been a disaster for the working families of this country - and need a fundamental overhaul.


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Last modified: Thu Jan 27 22:03:21 2005