Thursday, February 15, 2007

"1984" - Angry Progressives' Book Recommendation III

Honestly, given the state of this country since George W. Bush stole the presidency in 2000, I don't know why we didn't recommend George Orwell's classic "1984" the day we unveiled this site. But it dawned on me as I posted about Cheney claiming, in front of the National Association of Manufactureres, to be for workers' rights. It was probably the millionth time Cheney or Bush or someone in this administration has used doublespeak to perfection.

One simply cannot read this book without thinking about the Bush Administration. The boundary-less Global War on Terror, the constantly changing reasons for going to war in Iraq, the Clear Skies Act....the list goes on and on. It's as if Bush, Cheney and Rove read the book (insert Bush/reading joke here) and figured, "What the hell, let's give it a shot and see if it really works!"

Here's a great article on Common Dreams about how the Bush Adminstration has used Doublespeak to manipulate the American people.

Enjoy the book, see if it doesn't change the way you hear everything that comes out of Bush and Co.'s mouths, and think about how far we really are from America becoming Oceania.

Cheney Says Bush Administration, Not Unions, Is Defender of Workers' Rights

About a week ago we urged you to do what you can to help support the Employeer Free Choice Act, legislation that would strenghten workers' rights and allow them to form unions without interference from management.

The good news: Wednesday, the Democratic-controlled House Education and Labor Committee voted to approve the bill. Approval is expected in the House, although passage in the Senate, where the Republican minority is stronger, is less certain.

The bad news: VP Shooter Cheney says that Bush will veto the bill if it gets through Congress. Why? "Our administration rejects any attempt to short-circuit the rights of workers," he told the (ironically) business-friendly National Association of Manufacturers.

So, according to Shooter, the AFL-CIO and the worker-friendly Democratic Party don't support the rights of workers. No no no. It's the Bush Adminstriation that does. Um, right?

Alternative Energy News - Week of February 16, 2007

  • As the climate debate heats up IT finds itself part of the problem ... and part of the solution.

  • Raleigh, N.C., which is in the center of the state's tech hub, is conducting experiments to see if it can cut energy consumption and maintenance costs.

  • Democratic Governor Ed Rendell's renewed focus on developing renewable and alternative energy sources in Pennsylvania could be a boon to Pittsburgh companies in solar power, biodiesel and other related industries.

  • Hewlett-Packard announced that it has redesigned its ink cartridge packaging to be smaller and lighter and contain more recycled content.

  • Adobe Systems estimates that cutting waste and energy usage has translated into $1 million in annual savings, not including utilities rebates on an investment of only $1.2 million.

  • Prime Minister Stephen Harper pledged tougher measures to curb global warming and a more forceful Canadian foreign policy, on the one-year anniversary of his swearing in.

Saying Goodbye

Yesterday was the last 'Al Franken Show.' As our readers probably know, Al is heading off for a Senate run in Minnesota. We certainly wish him the best as he takes on Norm Coleman (R) in 08.

I found myself more emotional than I thought I'd be listening to the last show. Working in the legal document review industry for the last two years, I'd come to rely on Franken to get me through the long days. He did with a unique style that I hope we can duplicate on this site's radio-style venture GENERATION BLUE.

Franken, a comedian, made me laugh alot. His political humor is sometimes subtle, but powerful nontheless. He was born in 1951, so obviously he's cut from a different cloth than the Stewarts and Colberts (whom Franken often praises) of the world. Yet he's a terrific sketch writer and put that talent to great use, I think, on his radio show. But he also got angry, especially when talking about Congress' lack of oversight on Iraq. He even cried at times.

Franken directed a full, emotional discussion of all the issues of the day. His regular guests (Tom Oliphant, Norm Ornstein, Lawrence O'Donnell, David Brock and Joe Conasan (amongst others) were like friends to me! I'll miss his show greatly. Thanks to aprogs for letting me process my grief on this wonderful site! -- Jay Brenner

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Pay attention to the hypocrisy

In all the much ado about nothing involving Nancy Pelosi and the extra cost of a jet to carry her non-stop to California, everyone seems to be forgetting Dick Cheney's duck hunting trip to Louisiana in 2004. The controversy at the time involved a potential conflict of interest, since Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was his guest on Air Force Two and there was a matter pending before the Supreme Court involving Cheney. Putting that issue aside, however, how about the question of why were the taxpayers paying to send Fat-Ass on a duck hunting trip in the first place? Did he repay taxpayers for the cost of that trip, or did he have other priorities? Oh, and also, how about the comment Cheney made after he shot Harry on the quail hunt in hell in 2006? Remember, after he sobered up he gave an interview to the Fox in the Hen House News and mentioned he always travels with a medical staff. Do we pay for that as well? We have to pay for him to quail hunt with a bad ticker? But we can't pay for Pelosi to travel home non-stop? Hypocrisy? I think so!

-Jeff Bloomfield