News: The Good, Bad, & Ugly

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The last few days have generated a huge number of political news stories. Following are the biggies in the categories of Good, Bad, and Ugly from an Independent's point of view. Topics include a philosopher candidate for the World Bank President, drilling in ANWR to be sneaked in by inclusion on a budget bill, and Republicans pull out hammer and nails for Bush's Soc. Sec. Reform coffin.

The Good:

The Washington Post ran a heartlifting story today. The article states:

The Senate's top Republican said yesterday that President Bush's bid to restructure Social Security may have to wait until next year and might not involve the individual accounts the White House has been pushing hard.
It is good to see that even Republican Congress persons are capable of seeing the immense damage Bush SS Reform half-baked scheme would cause for the American people and her economy.

"Carly" Fiorina, recently ousted Hewlit Packard CEO, is one of the most intelligent and wise people in America. She has a background not only in business but also a working knowledge of history of ancient civilization and philosophy. She has on a number of occasions related current events to Ancient Greek societies and Rome. Carly has apparently been placed on the potential candidate list for the position of President of the World Bank. I give a thumbs up to the Whitehouse for a potentially excellent decision.

AnySoldier.Com received a great and heartwarming article by CNN.Com which details a web site devoted to getting our troops what they need. This is American ingenuity at its finest.

The Supreme Court has followed up its 2002 ruling of banning execution of the mentally retarded, with a new ban on executing those whose crimes were committed as a minor. This was a wise decision in lieu of America's less than stellar performance in making sure those on death row were actually guilty in the first place. Additionally, as most adults will recollect, youth was a time for learning and often that learning resulted from bad decisions or regretful actions. Youth is moldable, malleable, and receptive to help and rehabilitation and the Court's decision has apparently taken this into account.

The Bad

Utah, of all places, has stood proud in defiance of Bush's unfunded mandate called the No Child Left Behind Act. The Associated Press has an excellent article on how Utah views Bush's threat to pull all federal funding for education out of Utah if Utah will not comply. Utah's Governor is hoping for a compromise that will save Utah's children from Bush's BAD administration of the No Child Left Behind Act, but the Utah Congress is ready to defy the Whitehouse if necessary.

This is really bad. AP writer H. Josef Hebert, reports:

The first big environmental showdown of the new Congress is expected to come within weeks as the Senate plans to use a budget measure to try to open an Alaskan wildlife refuge to oil development, hoping to sidestep strong Democratic opposition.
...
Given the wider majority of 55 Republicans against 44 Democrats and one Independent, Republicans leaders believe they have the best chance yet to gather the 51 votes needed to include ANWR in the budget language, which is not subject to filibuster.

This is just another example of how the Bush administration holds nothing of the public's sacred. Not the Establishment Clause of the Constitution nor public owned assets paid for by the public's taxes. The idea of opening a public land reserved for the preservation of America's limited but still pristine geographic heritage and reserve for its wildlife to commercial exploitation is appalling and should not be allowed to go forward. If the public cannot stop Bush's rape of the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge, nothing that belongs to the public will ever be safe again.

The BBC let America's dirty little secret out of the bag and put it prominently in international headlines this week. In the article it states:

The US has one of the highest rates of relative child poverty among the world's wealthiest countries, according to a report by the UN.

The US, which is second only to Mexico in the UN children's agency report, is nonetheless one of few countries to see a recent decline in child poverty.

In total, Unicef says up to 50 million children are living in poverty in rich nations and the figure is rising.

Children in Nordic countries are best off, due to higher social spending.

This is not however surprising to me since President Bush has now had 5 years to promote death and war at the expense of social spending. His 2006 budget proposal seeks nearly across the board cuts in social spending while ever increasingly ratcheting up the debt for death and military expansion. Bush said he was a war president. On this at least he did not lie.

The Ugly

USA Today reports the Supreme Court is finally entering the fray over public institution displays of the 10 Commandments and other religious materials. Given the large number of such displays in public buildings across the land, and given the Constitution's Establishment clause prohibiting the Government from establishing a national religion, this is going to be a very ugly deliberation in the Supreme Court.

The Washington Post has an ugly law suit being covered by the press. It reports:

A high-profile civil trial opened Monday on allegations that the treasurer of a political action committee created by House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) illegally raised and spent corporate campaign funds in the 2002 election that led to a GOP takeover of the Texas Legislature.

DeLay has not been accused of any wrongdoing, nor has he been subpoenaed in the case. It was brought by five Democrats who said they lost their bids for state House seats as a result of illegal campaign contributions.

The only reason this story is so ugly is because it mirrors what we all know but don't want to see in our headlines. Money talks, Money walks, and Government and Political Parties are eyebrow deep in money and bankrupt of principles surrounding the welfare of the American people.

Reuters covers the last, but not least UGLY story of the week. The lawsuit filed by the ACLU and Human Rights First claims: "Secretary Rumsfeld bears direct and ultimate responsibility for this descent into horror by personally authorizing unlawful interrogation techniques and by abdicating his legal duty to stop torture," said Lucas Guttentag, lead counsel in the case.

I wrote pretty much this same opinion many moons ago. Being a card carrying member of the ACLU, I was both pleased and proud to see the ACLU bring this matter to the headlines. Though the case does not have a snowball's chance in hell of winning, it will serve to elevate public awareness of the direct link between Whitehouse policy and the devastating consequences such 'half-baked' policies can have upon America's image in the world as well as her ability to get others in the world to follow her lead.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on March 2, 2005 7:54 AM.

Hey, Bush: What About The Medicare/Medicaid Crisis? was the previous entry in this blog.

Orwell and Huxley: Prophets still. is the next entry in this blog.

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