Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans five years ago this week. Katrina's impact went beyond the loss of life and property to reveal deeply rooted attitudes about race many Americans thought had withered away. Jo Ann and Dave talked about the various aspects of Katrina's impacts, including the permanent displacement of over 100,000 residents, the reshaping of the city and the federal indictments against the New Orleans police.
The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.
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?
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.