Abe and Joe examine the billionaire backers of the Tea Party movement.
The Teabaggers -- noisy, bigoted and ignorant, but basically harmless, right? And if we're lucky, they'll hijack the Republican Party and nominate a bunch of un-electable loons. The best thing the Teabaggers can do is to keep making asses of themselves in public.
But what if they have friends in high places? A bombshell article by Jane Mayer in the New Yorker paints a vivid portrait of two such highly-placed friends. David and Charles Koch, the patriarch sublings of Koch Industries, are philanthropists of note -- and also deep-pocketed backers of the Tea Party and other conservative causes. Abe and Joe delve into the New Yorker piece and discuss the role of big money in today's discourse.
Joe returns from vacation to join Abe in taking a snapshot of the body politic.
It's summer. It's hot, it's sticky, and an election looms in November. What can we expect? Nearly halfway through President Obama's first term, what is the state of the American zeitgeist? Has the president delivered on his promise of hope and change? Are the Teabaggers worth taking seriously (no, really ...)? Have we shrugged off the toxic malaise of the Bush Years? What can we expect on Election Day?
And perhaps most importantly, do Abe and Joe have anything worth saying?
Bill talks with Mark Weisbrot about radical South American politics and the new film he co-wrote with Oliver Stone, South of the Border. Mark has us look to South American populism, the empowerment of working-people over the claims of Capital and strengthening of the State as relevant to thinking about political transformation in the US.
Movie Moles, Jan Haaken and Frann Michel, discuss Olver Stone's new movie about South American politics. They consider the up-beat tenor of the film and criticisms that this trivializes the seriousness of South American projects.
This week on Voices from the Edge, Jo Ann and Dave looked at the good and bad news of the week. Topics discussed included: federal funds being made available to Oregon to address budget shortfalls and whether those dollars will reach the people who really are in need; the impact of the new president of the Portland Police Association; shortcomings and risks with new assistance being offered to homeowners facing foreclosure; and missed economic development opportunities in emerging technologies.
Every now and then, we get one right. The 9th Circuit Court overturns California's gay marriage ban.
In a nod to outmoded notions like equality and inalienable rights, the Ninth Circuit Court overturned California's ban on gay marriage last week. As some radio hosts have observed, injustice and iniquity endure, but there has been an inexorable march in America toward a condition of more freedom, more justice, more equality. We're not fully equal yet, folks, but we just got a little more equal. Reaction from the right has been predictable.
And there's homework! Verizon and Google are on the verge of striking a deal with the FCC that would effectively end Internet neutrality. This would usher in an age where Internet providers would be able to give preferential treatment -- in the form of speed and access -- to the content of their choice, ending the grass-roots populism that has characterized the Web to date.
So call the White House comment line, 202-456-1111, and tell them to keep the Internet neutral and free. While you're at it, call Nancy Pelosi (202-225-0100) and Harry Reid (202-224-3542) and tell them the same thing. Or, sign the petition.
Oregon House District 43 is one of the most diverse in the state. It also faces some of the biggest challenges: high unemployment, high rates of police misconduct, high displacement from gentrification.
This week Dave and Jo Ann talked with State Rep. Lew Frederick about what role the state can play in addressing some of these problems.