May 06 2008 show notes

  • Indiana and North Carolina are going to the polls today.
  • Guest: Bev Harris, Black Box Voting. 1.1m voter registrations "cancelled" in Indiana.
  • Guest: Dan Gainor, Director of the Business & Media Institute. The government's role in the ethanol-driven global food crisis.
  • Guest: John Stauber, Executive Director, Center for Media and Democracy. The Pentagon pundits.
  • Guest: Caroline Frederickson, American Civil Liberties Union. Don't let the Democrats cave in on FISA.
  • The difference between neoconservative and neoliberal:

Topics, guests, upcoming events, quotes, links to articles, audio clips, books & bumper music.

Tuesday 06 May '08 show

  • Indiana and North Carolina are going to the polls today.
  • Goosalini is a dad of 5, but the hawks are gathering around.
  • Article: 5-6-08: Cancelled or changed, there's a whole lotta shuffling going on w. IN database.
    "Yesterday, we reported that according to Indiana's own figures, 1.1 million voter registrations had been cancelled, one-quarter of a million of those in just two counties. Another researcher, Steve Rosenfeld, began tracking back through data from the Election Assistance Commission, finding that the cancellation quantities didn't jive with the numbers you'd expect. According to Rosenfeld, after talking with the office of the Indiana Secretary of State the explanation is that "cancelled" does not mean "cancelled registrations" it means "changes" to registrations.


    Because Indiana is implementing an ID requirement, and this will require that voters name and address match when the voter registration database is compared with their ID, an unscrupulous data entry person would no longer need to PURGE registrations in order to knock people off the voting rolls. All that's required is CHANGING the registration slightly, to introduce typos.

  • Article: 'Stinking Evidence' of Possible Election Fraud Found in Florida.
  • Guest: Bev Harris, Black Box Voting. Voter issues...fraud, cancelled registrations, etc... Thom's article mentioning her, she has been doing this for years. Indiana caging emails. 1.1m voter registrations cancelled according to the Secretary of State, but it could not be right. Total 4.4m. The Secretary of State said they were changed. hey were concentrated in certain areas. You don't have to say which party you belong to in Indiana. Lack of information. Now they have a government ID requirement which has to match. If somebody has introduced typos, it won't match. Indiana says it does not have to be exact, maybe nickname like Bev for Beverly. But what if it is Ben instead of Bev? Florida email last year, somebody changed quite a few. Citizens have no control or sight of electronic voting.
  • Bumper Music: You can leave your hat on, Randy Newman.
  • Article: Size matters.
    "Iowa was The Biggun.
    Then New Hampshire was The Biggun.
    Michigan was supposed to be The Biggun but state party officials interfered and made it a wee'un.
    Then Nevada and South Carolina were The Bigguns.
    Florida played Michigan's game and ended up another wee'un.
    Then...Super Tuesday, baby! Now that was The Biggun.
    The Potomac Primary? The real Biggun!
    Then Texas and Ohio were The Biggest Bigguns of all.
    Until Pennsylvania came along. It wasn't just The Biggun, it was THE BIGGUN.
    Now Indiana and North Carolina are The BIGGEST BIGGUNS IN ALL BIGGUNLAND.
  • Article: CNBC Airport Stores sell Hillary Nutcrackers hillary
    Contact and let them know what you think...
  • Article: Limbaugh on Hispanic mayor of LA: I thought he was either a ’shoe shine guy or a Secret Service agent.’.
    "I understand now why Bill Clinton hit on my date about a year ago at the Kobe Club in New York. I was minding my own business and Clinton came in. And the short version is he used the mayor of Los Angeles to distract me, while hitting on my date. […]

    He came over three or four times, had Ron Burkle with him and the mayor of Los Angeles, who I thought was either the shoe shine guy or a Secret Service agent.

  • Bumper Music: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly, Ennio Morricone.
  • Is today the end of the race?
  • Article: America's Young Adults Face Serious Economic Challenges According to New Data Report and Opinion Poll Analysis.
  • Bumper Music: What Do Ya Think About That, Montgomery Gentry.
  • Clip:
    [Bill O'Reilly]: "What kind of judgment allows a sitting senator to attend a church that radical? Why is Barack Obama continuing to go to that church? "

    [Sean Hannity]: "He stayed in the church for 20 years, for 20 years! I just don’t know how you could sit there for 20 years. Let's say he went to the church ten years and then left the church. I think people would've said, 'All right, he was showing better judgment.'"

    [Stephen Colbert]: "Exactly! When you see or hear things that are bad or going on in your church, you get up and you walk out. That's what Catholics like me and Papa Bear and Sean Hannity understand. You leave that church! Unless it's, you know, widespread, decades-long rumors of sexual abuse. In that case you gotta give it time."
    The Colbert Report.

  • Carl Wolfson spoke on the local show on KPOJ of the election of '32 when a major coalition came together of young, first time voters for FDR. There was also a movement around Reagan and there is a movement around Obama which is intimidating the right; Murdoch and Richard Mellon Scaife are trying to stop it. Would the movement back Hillary? Thom thinks it might.
  • The Philippines could not get enough rice, and is rationing it. Should we abandon biofuels?
  • Article: Is Ethanol Getting a Bum Rap?. "Corn-based fuel isn't the villain critics contend, but shifting to other crops is critical".
    "First, a reality check on corn ethanol, which isn't quite the villain critics make it out to be. Last year, American farmers grew a record 13.1 billion bushels of corn on 85 million acres. Of that, 22% went to make about 7 billion gallons of ethanol. That still left enough corn to supply the domestic market, increase exports to record levels, and stockpile a 10% surplus. McKinsey principal Bill Caesar estimates farmers will be able to keep increasing corn-based ethanol production to 15 billion gallons in 2015 (a level of output mandated by federal policy) without reducing the amount going for food and feed, and without increasing acres planted. The secret: continuing improvements in yields.

    Of course, it's impossible to divert nearly one-quarter of the corn crop to fuel without causing prices to rise. Corn is now around $5.50 per bushel, more than double its price in 2005. But this has had a relatively small impact on the broader runup in global food prices. Higher corn costs add 2 cents to a box of corn flakes, or 11 cents to a gallon of milk from corn-fed cows. Corn prices have little to do with the increases in rice and wheat, and only a small connection to soybean price jumps. "Biofuels are a very, very small factor" in rising food costs, says David Morris, vice-president of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, a nonprofit group that tries to strengthen communities politically and economically around the world. Absent corn ethanol, food prices would still be up dramatically because of soaring global demand, fast-rising prices for oil and natural gas used to make fertilizer, and climatic factors such as Australia's drought. It's also worth noting that these high crop prices save taxpayers billions of dollars in reduced subsidies to farmers—far more than is spent to subsidize ethanol.

  • Guest: Dan Gainor, Director of the Business & Media Institute. The government's role in the ethanol-driven global food crisis. Abandon biofuels. Business Week ethanol article - major factors include the Australian drought. Thom said hemp makes much more sense than corn for biofuel. They agreed corn is bad choice. There is high fructose corn syrup in a lot of food. Prices doubled, but because of the of the devaluation of dollar. The desert is crossing Africa. The Himalayas melting is changing rivers. “Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get.”, Mark Twain. Brazil has lots of ethanol, but not from corn. Decriminalize hemp. Stop subsidizing corn for ethanol. Get the earliest primaries out of the corn states so the corn lobbies don't matter do much. He says energy policy should cover all sorts of energy. We need a mix.
  • Bumper Music: Gasoline, from Sheryl Crow.
  • Bumper Music: Crazy, Gnarls Barkley.
  • Article: John Bolton: US should bomb Iranian camps.
    "John Bolton, America’s ex-ambassador to the United Nations, has called for US air strikes on Iranian camps where insurgents are trained for war in Iraq.

    Mr Bolton said that striking Iran would represent a major step towards victory in Iraq. While he acknowledged that the risk of a hostile Iranian response harming American’s overseas interests existed, he said the damage inflicted by Tehran would be “far higher” if Washington took no action.

  • From the chat room: [captnkirk2112] Indianapolis Star: "More voters have turned out in the first half hour than usually turn out in a half day... Republicans appeared to be crossing over in droves today in Marion County and suburban counties". End of the Republican era, or Rush's Operation Chaos?
  • Agribusiness price gouging. Cartelization of fuel. Pumping CO2 into lakes and using algae to convert it to ethanol. Turn it into carbon and put back into the soil. Thom will get into it in future program.
  • Increasing the mpg by 3 would save energy equivalent to all the biofuels. There's only 30 years of reserves for nuclear power and it takes lots of oil to obtain and build and store the uranium; according to Dr. Helen Caldicott, it takes 13-18 years to produce power from uranium. The Price Anderson Act was created because nobody will insure nuclear plants.
  • Bumper Music: A Gallon Of Gas, the Kinks.
  • Article: Crossover voting seen in some Indy precincts.
    "An Indianapolis area precinct that selected Republican Jon Elrod over Democrat Andre Carson in March’s special election for Congress had only 21 voters who requested Republican ballots as of 9 a.m. today -- out of 168 cast.

    Amid heavy turnout, Republicans appeared to be crossing over in droves in Marion County and suburban counties, where fewer Republican voters might impact down-ticket primary races.

    Meghan Ward-Bopp, 24, went against family tradition and asked for a Democratic ballot so she could vote for Barack Obama. But she said she plans to vote for Republican John McCain in November.

    “I’m a hardcore Republican,” she said, “but it’s about who I wanted in second place in case McCain doesn’t make it. ... I don’t like the way this country’s been run in the last 20 years. I’m sick of the dynasty (of two families) that’s been running things.”

    Ward-Bopp voted for the Democrat she liked, but Jim Adams, 36, voted for Hillary Clinton to keep the race going beyond Indiana. He’s a McCain backer and enjoys watching the Democrats fight.

    “In the end, I think McCain is going to win,” Adams said.

    The Republican strongholds in the counties around Indianapolis have high demand for Democrat ballots.

    “We’ve seen more Democrats so far in the first few hours than we’ll usually see in a day,” said election judge Barb Stauch at Avon United Methodist Church in Hendricks County.

    “We’ve had a lot of questions about switching. People want to know if they can switch back and forth, if they can vote Democratic this time,” said election clerk Cara Paasch at the church.

  • Livestock and the food chain. If 10% of Americans became vegetarians it would solve the world food crisis. John Robbins is a friend and has been on the show, as has Frances Moore Lappé who was on the show from Dubrovnik.
  • Hedge funds. Corn. Ethanol. Rice.
  • Happy birthday to producer Shawn Taylor.
  • French nuclear power. High speed trains use it.
  • Article: How to drive less: you can’t afford the gas.
  • Ellen Ratner of Talk Radio News. Lots in the Middle East are worried that the US may bomb Iran, they think there are more ships in the Gulf. The House Judiciary Committee subpoenaed Addington. Amazing hearing today, they have clips from that hearing and the torture hearings. the Representative from Alaska Donald Young said people are driving like a bunch of idiots. wants $1 tax per gallon of gas. Steny Hoyer, growth 4%, payroll growth, job losses, foreclosures, gas prices, circumventing committees, empathy. Guantanamo Bay hearing, torture unamerican, custody and control.
  • Article: Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand, April 20, 2008. The corporate media are still not talking about it.
  • Article: What the Pentagon Pundits were selling on the side, Diane Farsetta, Senior Researcher, Center for Media and Democracy.
    "The Pentagon launched its covert media analyst program in 2002, to sell the Iraq war. Later, it was used to sell an image of progress in Afghanistan, whitewash the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, and defend the Bush administration's warrantless wiretapping, as David Barstow reported in his New York Times expose.

    But the pundits weren't just selling government talking points. As Robert Bevelacqua, William Cowan and Carlton Sherwood enjoyed high-level Pentagon access through the analyst program, their WVC3 Group sought "contracts worth tens of millions to supply body armor and counterintelligence services in Iraq," reported Barstow. Cowan admitted to "push[ing] hard" on a WVC3 contract, during a Pentagon-funded trip to Iraq.

    Then there's Pentagon pundit Robert H. Scales Jr. The military firm he co-founded in 2003, Colgen, has an interesting range of clients, from the Central Intelligence Agency and U.S. Special Operations Command, to Pfizer and Syracuse University, to Fox News and National Public Radio.

    Of the 27 Pentagon pundits named publicly to date, six are registered as federal lobbyists. That's in addition to the less formal -- and less transparent -- boardroom to war-room influence peddling described above. (There are "more than 75 retired officers" who took part in the Pentagon program overall, according to Barstow.)

    The Pentagon pundits' lobbying disclosure forms help chart what can only be called a military-industrial-media complex. They also make clear that war is very good for at least some kinds of business.

  • Clip:
    "Also, our present emergency and a common sense of decency make it imperative that no new group of war millionaires shall come into being in this nation as a result of the struggles abroad. The American people will not relish the idea of any American citizen growing rich and fat in an emergency of blood and slaughter and human suffering."
    Franklin D. Roosevelt, Fireside Chat. May 26th, 1940. Speaking about World War II.
  • Guest: John Stauber, Executive Director, Center for Media and Democracy. Indiana crossovers due to Operation Chaos? We won't know until we hear from the pollsters later tonight. Illegal propaganda. FDR on "our war profiteers. Most people don't read the New York Times or listen to Thom's show and the corporate media are not talking about it. Howard Kurtz of CNN says the media are not talking about it because they are embarrassed. How about criminal? What can we do? lets you to create maps of the interlocking directories of the top companies in the US in 2004. Military industrial media complex. He wrote "Weapons of Mass Deception" with Sheldon Rampton. New media kind of war profiteering. Propaganda, it is a crime, Call Congress for investigations.
  • Bumper Music: Me And My Gang, Rascal Flatts.
  • Quote: "Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution."
    President Bush: Information Sharing, Patriot Act Vital to Homeland Security, April 20, 2004.
  • Guest: Caroline Frederickson, director of the Washington legislative office of the American Civil Liberties Union. Bush clip. He seemed to be lying through his teeth. Congress have stopped being angry and are now looking to make a deal. Vince Foster, the right wing pinning it on Hillary - what would they have done if Clinton had been wiretapping? Nixon was. Democrat Jay Rockefeller is willing to give telecomms immunity. Stockholm / battered wife / inside the beltway syndrome. Contact congress, tell them don't give immunity. Steny Hoyer leading negotiations. Call Congress or ACLU action. Action item for the day.
  • Article: Nigeria oil rebels considering Obama truce appeal.
    "Rebels who have stepped up attacks on Nigeria's oil industry in the last month said on Sunday they were considering a ceasefire appeal by U.S. presidential hopeful Barack Obama.

    The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has launched five attacks on oil facilities in the Niger Delta since it resumed a campaign of violence in April, forcing Royal Dutch Shell to shut more than 164,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd).

    "The MEND command is seriously considering a temporary ceasefire appeal by Senator Barack Obama. Obama is someone we respect and hold in high esteem," the militant group said in an e-mailed statement.

  • CNN did very well from the first Gulf War and careers were made.
  • John McCain said that if he had been president he would have gone down to New Orleans after Katrina, but instead he was eating birthday cake with George Bush.
  • Biofuels being blamed for high fool prices, when oil companies are posting record profits.
  • Hillary's links to the right wing and Murdoch and Richard Mellon Scaife.
  • Thom on the difference between neoconservative and neoliberal:
    Neoliberalism is generally regarded as, it's a phrase that's very popular in Europe and most of the rest of the world, frankly, and it's the definition of what in the United States you might call Libertarianism; absolute free trade. You know, Libertarians, I say Libertarians are Republicans who want to smoke dope and get laid. At least the economic policies of Libertarians, of "turn it all over to the multinational corporations, no more national boundaries, absolute free trade, the government involved at a very, very minimal if at all, level in social policy and social benefits, and the government's only purpose being basically to maintain a military and policing presence. That is Neoliberalism and you find its roots in the writings of Friedrich von Hayek and Milton Friedman and more recently Tom Friedman.

    Neoconservativism, neoconservatives are people who in many cases started out as kind of lefty radicals back in the sixties who became hard core right wing radicals out of this weird notion advanced by Leo Strauss and others that because no two democracies have ever gone to war with each other, it's important to spread democracy across the world regardless of the cost and regardless of the technique; that somehow the ends absolutely justifies the means, that it's OK to even lie to people if ultimately it's in their best interests, and therefore shoving democracy down peoples' throats with the barrel of a gun is the highest and most noble thing that we can do. And the neoconservatives, you know, Bill Kristol and all the people associated with Dick Cheney in this administration I think have been roundly discredited.

    But the Neoconservativism world view and perspective has more to do with foreign policy and democracy and the neoliberal world view claims that there is an association between democracy and what I would refer to as conservative economic policies, although the rest of the world refers to it as neoliberal. It's an interesting collection of confusing terms.

  • Trading in gold, Trading with the Enemy Act.

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