Daily Topics - January 12th 2010

factory farming 1 imagesQuote: I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends. ~ Abraham Lincoln

Hour One - Why isn't the Obama Administration investigating the malfeasance of the Bush Administration? Former Governor of Alabama Don Siegelman www.donsiegelman.com

Hour Two - Shouldn't we kill factory farming before it kills us? Gregory Conko www.cei.org

Plus...Factory Farming, bird flu...lethal to humans? Dr. Michael Greger www.drgreger.org (and birdflubook.com)

Hour Three - Isn't comparing Osama to Hitler way off the mark? Cliff May www.defenddemocracy.org


Mark (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Since the Supreme Court is looking into the NFL, they ought to inject a ruling on facemasking in overtime games. According to the NFL rule book, a facemask penalty is not called if the grab is “incidental,” which is the “explanation” the NFL is giving for the non-call on Aaron Rodgers’ fumble on the final play of the Arizona-Green Bay game. I rather suppose that officials just didn’t want to be the targets of irate hometown fans by upsetting them after the stunning finale. But I saw Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson’s head clearly being jerked to the side by a hand that grabbed his facemask before he fumbled in overtime at Chicago, and again a no-call leading to another stunning finale in favor of the home team. Maybe facemasking is permissible in overtime if it causes a fumble, so that the officials can go home early.

Mark (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Now back to the light news. Last spring, I boarded an airplane to check the water level when one of those glorified waitresses asked me if I had the swine flu. I didn’t answer, but the look on my face persuaded her to answer her own question: “I was just joking.” Sure. At any rate, swine flu vaccines (despite the terror displayed by a California nursing association) appear to be so effective that most researchers now suspect that this strain of flu is no worse than any other ordinary flu, save for the fact that it is “new.” The obsession about a “pandemic” has turned out to be almost wholly a media creation, helped along by the various phobias concerning Mexico. The fact is that little more than 5,000 have died of it world-wide (and mainly as a complication of more serious illnesses), and even that represents but a drop in the yearly flu-fatality bucket even in the U.S.; in Mexico, where the flu allegedly originated, it seems to have taken an extended vacation. The WHO, moreover, has come under criticism for inventing overblown criteria that allowed swine flu to be declared a potential “pandemic”—kind of like how the Bush administration invented rationales without evidence to raise terrorist “threat” levels at politically opportune times.

In regard to another touchy subject, NAFTA, it would appear that the “giant sucking sound” has claimed another “victim”: Ross Perot. As they say, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em—and not just in Mexico. Perot’s Systems Corporation recently opened up a “technology center” in Guadalajara, meant to employ close to 300 engineers as primarily out-sourced tech support operators. Shocking, huh? Or perhaps not as shocking as the 6,000 Perot already employed in India (and thousands more in other countries). Indeed, it would appear once again that Mexico is the more convenient target for scapegoating because they are “closer” to the scene. I don’t believe that Perot ever mentioned in 1992 that he made billions in “administering” Medicare in Texas during the 1980s, either. But then again, Perot was always a little off-center; he claimed North Vietnam hired Black Panthers to “assassinate” him, and that Cubans had been hired to kill him over his stance on NAFTA. He also claimed that he was “defeated” during his debate with Al Gore over NAFTA because Gore had been fed “secret” information through a hidden ear-piece—and not because Perot was continuously stumped when confronted with facts and his own hypocrisy. But that was then, and things seem to have changed a bit.

It is interesting to note that in the current Texas legislature, 44 of the 74 Democrats in the House were Latino, and zero who are Republican. So when Thom and his right-wing guests try to out-anti-Latino each other, he ought to take into account that he populistizes at the Left’s peril. But then again, I suspect that many whites who call themselves Democrats will allow their latent prejudices take hold if they feel they are no longer “in control” of the party, like former “lefties” like Michael Medved and Charles Krauthammer who saw blacks “controlling” the Democratic agenda. Rather than attempt to “assimilate” Latinos into their vision of America (like Thom’s bigoted teabagger friends), they will run to the “white” party—especially when those on the “progressive” or “populist” side continuously deploy “Mexicans” as convenient punching bags; perhaps we can only hope that Latinos mistake Thom for a Republican when he engages in one of these rants. Anyways, I feel a need to point these things out because I’m a soldier, not The Man’s strumpet.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Governor Don Siegelman, of Alabama, has this one wrong: President has the Administration of his dreams and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise . . . Because there is NO evidence.

The Obama Administration has worked feverously to avoid doing any and all of the right things from day two. I am sorry that he is the effect of these policies. Unfortunately, as a true believer in republican democracy, he is the Administration’s enemy.

sue bartlett (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Remember how the Bush administration was spying on us, the citizens? This surely included Democrats. I wonder if Rove is using that information to blackmail Obama and his administration, primarily not to prosecute Bush or Rove and that would explain both why they are not freeing Gov. Siegelman. This would also explain the tortured logic in the Justice department's logic.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

The anti-abortion platform is NOT about saving fetuses . . . It is about disabling women and relegating them to less then second class citizen status. It is about putting Jeanie and Linda and Susan and . . . Back in the box.

Mena Sprague (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Since I have to pay for wars that I don't believe in, why shouldn't anti-choice people have to pay for abortions they don't believe in?

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

All Harry Reid can be accused of is being unable to keep up with the changing vocabulary of America. He is still using the words that would not be as offensive in the 1960's . There is no way anyone can accuse him of being a racist. He is just out of touch!

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@SueBarlett: If this was about a dead hooker or a live boy in Obama’s past, he should man-up and BE the President regardless. It is not. His voting record while in the Senate showed him to be a just-right-of-center pro-corporatist.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@THOM: While a prejudice is a bias, a bias is not a prejudice . . . just like all animals are not white horses. You let yourself get clipped by winger-logic.

Jason Carey (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

The fact that Harry Reid’s statements are being used for political leverage by some Republicans is downright sad. Someone needs to tell them that race is nothing more than a social construction, there is no such thing as a "white" or "black" gene, and the only difference between these two races is what we as humans create. Hopefully one day we will realize that we all share a common human identity, and use that to help each other rather than tear each other down with the walls of racism and inequality.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Upon further reflection I may have been incorrect in my analysis of anti-abortion reasoning: The anti-abortion platform might be about saving fetuses . . . So they can be spent frivolously later.

harry ashburn (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

re: hog farm stench: The answer in Texas is to install an Air-Wick on each fencepost.

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Thom was criticized by a person’s post because he said America for the USA. I have used America interchangeably with the USA since I was in the seventh grade. AMERICA IS NOT A CONTINENT!!! North and South America are continents. Now that Geography 101 is out of the way, I will pursue what I see for America’s future.

I have shared with you that since I was in my mid-twenties, God has given me the ability to look into the future. I would have become fabulously wealthy had God also given me the ability to pinpoint the future with the exact month and year.

America is transforming herself presently as a banana republic for ninety percent of her population. The remaining ten percent will be the rich, the military, and the industrial-military complex. I also see that America will have a minimal of one thousand military bases around the world. I also see that America will never be defeated militarily. And, I mean never!!! America will self-implode before she is ever defeated by a foreign nation.

I do not believe that America will self-implode. As America sees that she is going to be defeated within her borders through hatred and greed and from the hatred by foreign countries, America will initiate a military nuclear holocaust around the world. The fall out from the radiation will eventually reach America and the world will end through America’s nuclear holocaust.

I see America’s self-destruction as an inevitable consequence for her lust for all the world’s natural resources. America has always felt that it was her manifest destiny to control the world.

The course that America is on is unsustainable. This course will lead to America’s nuclear holocaust that will end our world as we know it.

On a side note Obama weighs taxes on banks. That will mean the small time saver will be hosed by Obama and the banks that will pass the tax increase to Mom and Pop.

Obama should tax the commission fees on the buying and selling of $900 trillion dollars in derivatives or the funny money. But, that would hurt the crooks and thieves in our financial institutions. A tax of one quarter of one percent would raise $2 and one quarter trillion dollars in new taxes. Our economy would really benefit from these new taxes. That will not happen because America lacks leadership and governance skills. No one in America has the courage and guts to handle the tough decisions that need to be made.

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Michael W. Hovey
Associate Director for Catholic Social Teaching
Archdiocese of Detroit
305 Michigan Ave.
Detroit, MI 48226

Michael Hovey is a good source for information on the Just War Theory. He has not written an article in the Michigan Catholic, a weekly newspaper. The Archdiocese of Detroit may have put a muzzle on his lips and fingers.

I say this information because after he had a rebuttal article on George Weigel’s defense for George W. Bush’s attack on Middle Eastern countries. George Weigel is a Catholic Moral Theologian.

Mr. Hovey has criticized George Weigel’s thoughts on the Just War Theory. George Weigel said that the attacks in the Middle East met the criteria of a Just War Theory. Mr. Hovey was critical of George Weigel who has been critical of cafeteria Catholics who pick and choose certain issues to favor a personal thinking process.

The Catholic bishops and the Pope have said that the attacks were wrong and immoral and did not meet the Just War Theory.

Obama will not join The International Criminal Court because he is a war criminal who is committing crimes against humanity.

I mention the above information because a Catholic priest has defended Mr. Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize speech on December 2, 2009. Mr.Obama’s justification for continuing the crimes against humanity in the Middle East does not meet the Just War Theory.

sue (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Hog farms - these large farms also contribute to real air pollution. In the Oregon and Washington Columbia gorge, it has been shown that the ammonia from the huge hog operation is a major contributor to air pollution and haze.
A study published in Pediatrics in June 2006 showed increased asthma within 3 miles of a large hog farm.
A Forest Service study also showed that the rain in the area is 10 to 30 times more acidic than the normal 5. This has been determined to be from 1) Boardman coal plant, 2) the large animal feedlots (cattle and hog) and 3) vehicle emissions.

sue (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@Adlof: Rove could be blackmailing Obama about deals and people he dealt with in all of the eight years prior to the election. It's possible we can't imagine what Obama thinks might take his power away.

Zero G. (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Re: Hog Farm

"Retirement, no my tires are all still good." - Wavy Gravy

Oh, I'm sorry, never mind....

Zero G. (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Ray McGovern has been positing that the CIA has been threatening Obama.

Maybe that explains this:

Obama Picks CIA Insider for Inquiry
By Melvin A. Goodman
January 11, 2010

Or maybe Obama is just the corporatist he appears to be.

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

It was Mosadek

Tim (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

I can relate to struggling with your upper midwest dialect. I am from the Toledo area, not far from where you were raised at. I could tell right away your had an accent like me by the way you pronounced roof etc. It was hard for me to get used to not putting prepositions at the end of sentences. I didn't think it mattered where the prepositions were placed at. But I think you are doing great. Now let's go ice fishing.

Zero G. (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Can we at least agree that Prescott Bush & Union Bank were actual historical backers of the real historical Hitler, and dispence with undefined meaningless comparisons?

Tim (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

I thought it was Gotsabadah (sp). There was a joke going around at the time,
Q. What does I ratical Iranian resort to when his wife withholds sex by night.

A. Gotsbadah.

Zero G. (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

How Bush's grandfather helped Hitler's rise to powerRumours of a link between the US first family and the Nazi war machine have circulated for decades. Now the Guardian can reveal how repercussions of events that culminated in action under the Trading with the Enemy Act are still being felt by today's president

Ben Aris in Berlin and Duncan Campbell in Washington The Guardian, Saturday 25 September 2004 23.59 BST

George Bush's grandfather, the late US senator Prescott Bush, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from their involvement with the financial backers of Nazi Germany.
The Guardian has obtained confirmation from newly discovered files in the US National Archives that a firm of which Prescott Bush was a director was involved with the financial architects of Nazism.

His business dealings, which continued until his company's assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.

The evidence has also prompted one former US Nazi war crimes prosecutor to argue that the late senator's action should have been grounds for prosecution for giving aid and comfort to the enemy.


Can we agree?

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Saeed Qutub was the original guy from the middle east who lamented the increasing influence of western military powers in the middle east specially the ones that prop up the corrupt dictators in power at that time in Egypt (was it Saadat) who were adored by the west but abhored by most local conservative Egyptians.
He was actually a guy educated in western schools!

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Syrian and Iranian regimes are 'blood enemies' of Al Qaeda and Taliban! One is a Baathist (kind of Stalinist) and the other is Shia'a. Al'Qaeda and Taliban are sunni salafii! These two will never ever meet or even negotiate!

Zero G. (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Does Cliff May support democracy in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE, or any of the other US propped dictatorships around the world?

rewinn (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Cliff May seems not to understand that a trial of Osama bin Ladn in Syria would have been Hobbesian indeed ... nasty, brutal and short.

The secular rulers of Syria don't really like extremists who threaten their rule.

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

The country that taliban offered to give up binLaden was Saudi Arabia, the closest allies of the Bush family!

j.sea (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Factory Farming is Torture. And every time we walk a grocery store aisle and walk past the "product" of that torture -- or worse, pay for it -- we are participating in the distribution of agony to millions of beings. Living beings of any kind cannot be boxed, crated, stacked, stored like widgets for their entire lives. It is beyond comprehension and causes my complete soul to collapse every time I regard the full spectrum of the suffering we are generating by our participation and our silence. End it All NOW....

Stan (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

When I was young my parents told me never use the term N------, which I did not, and to show proper respect by using the term Negro, which I did. The common term in use in the Border Sate in which I lived was N------, which I knew was terribly demeaning.

During this time, on many, many instances I was called N------- Lover for using the term Negro. I mostly let the epithet drop because of who the source was. Jesus did tell us to cast not our pearls before swine. Always in the back of my mind was the comeback that Jesus told us to love our neighbors as ourselves.

Today I don’t know if young people know what a struggle it was for some of us simply to show respect for people of color.

Harry Reid is of the generation of Medgar Evers, etc. He served in the Marine Corps along side Black People. He heard Civil Rights leaders many, many times use the term Negro to describe themselves. While he was growing up “Black” itself was a derogatory term. African American hadn’t been invented. His use of the term Negro recently was with respect.

rewinn (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@Richard - the anti-abortion platform is ultimately about freeing the reichwing from the burden of Jesus' actual teaching ("love your neighbor, turn the other cheek, cure the sick ...") . They pick an issue on which Jesus said NOTHING (...abortion BTW was perfectly legal in Jesus' time, at least up to the moment of "quickening"...) but on which they can brand their opponents worse than devils: babykillers!

Ya know, once your opponent is a baby-killer, you yourself can do anything at all. Because you must be righteous, since your opponent is a baby-killer.

Abortion also has the advantage of Never Going Away. Women may go back to dying in back rooms with coathangers but they will never stop needing or wanting to control their wombs. So it's a perfect issue for the reichwing.

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

And this was negotiable too! Other countries in the list were Pakistan and Turkey. The only condition was to offer binLaden to a neutral thrid country with ties to both Afghanistan (under taliban at that time) and USA.

rewinn (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@mir - imagine bin Ladn's trial in Saudi Arabia:

Captured Tuesday.
Tried Wednesday.
Executed Friday.

Mr. May = soft on crime!

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@ Sue: We have no evidence that Obama hold any position differing from his Administration other than a slew of broken in-the-heat-of-the-moment, campaign promises. To the contrary, his Senate voting record tracks largely with his Administration’s actions. We have zero evidence of a Sword of Damocles being held over his head.

. . . AND if there was blackmail happening, Dave Letterman showed us all the proper and righteous way to deal with it . . . AND hence my statement that Obama should man-up, face the heat and BE the President regardless.

By Ockham's razor, I label President Obama and the entire Administration by the weight of their non-good works.

Side Note: All in all, Rove is a frightened little man who holds no real power and only has second-hand lion dreams of pretended greatness. The only power that can be ascribed to him in this moment is the power we cede to him and the evil he inflicts.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@ZeroG: Thanks to getting to Senator Prescott Bush . . . Of course, the money earmarked for the NAZIs was, by ‘happy happenstance’, the windfall which became the basis of the Bush family fortune.

AND let us not forget the blessed Senator Prescott Bush’s ACTUAL involvement in the coup/conspiracy to overthrow FDR.

rewinn (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

In "I Have A Dream", Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr used the word "Negro" fifteen times:

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@mir: Saudi Arabia woulda whacked their favorite son . . . As Osama’s uncle, the King, hated the jack_hole.

portland elmo (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Factory farms-
So all you "Greengos" and "Animists" and "Anarchists" out there think we should do away with factory farms huh? What about all the Third World countries that depend on our factory farms for survival? Or to hell with them!
If you want to do away with factory farming in America then put your money where your mouth is all you "Narcisus" types and support family farming in the Third World. A good place to start, would be to buy a goat or some chickens for someone in the Third World. In our self righteous attempt to outlaw factory farming lets not forget about the beautiful children in the Third world who are depending on us for life. Teach a man to fish and he'll have fish for a lifetime!

Tim (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

My Mother is 84 and she still refers to African Americans as "Colored". That was acceptable in her circles at one time too. I try to tell her the new PC way to refer to people but I give her a pass. It was how she was raised.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

On other hand, I can thing of a thousand reasons I think that Harry Reid resign as Majority Leader that have ZERO to do with the topic at hand.

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

rewinn - very true.
Bush needed a war against Saddam Hussein to avenge his daddy. Cheney and Rumsfeld needed the oil and moeny to the war industrial complex. And afghanistan the best way to get there.

sue (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@Adlof - I agree Obama is behaving as a corporatist as befits his DLC past, and I agree I was hoping against hope for him to do the right thing. However, what I can't reconcile is the weird arguments in the courts that Obama's justice dept is using such as the one that there are no rights to protect you from being framed by prosecutors. And that was just the last in a line of them. I can't figure out where that is coming from. It seems outside of the corporatist explanation.

Scott (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Again, not to keep banging on the point, but the Tea Party movement is not something that progressives can get together with. The other day in the town where I live (which is near the bay area) I saw a homemade tea party billboard and next to it, smaller in size, was a sign that said support Fox News with the network logo on it.

These people are not going to be reasoned with strictly with facts, they get their facts from Fox News, and so I wonder how you are going to get these "low information" people to wake up to what is going on?

They are being told over and over and over again that Liberals/Democrats are the reason the economy is bad (again, facts don't matter) not corporations, not trade policy, not economic policy are the reasons.

These are the kind of people who absolutely KNOW that tax cuts to the rich and corporations will fix the economy. They know it like they know the sun will rise in the east and set in the west. They know it in their bones down to their DNA.

They are Authoritarians who have been so propagandized that up is down and black is white.

If Thom really believes what he is saying on the radio I would hope he would go to a local Tea Party meeting where he lives and try and persuade them to not talk about social issues and stick with economics and come to some agreement on what needs to be done. Or he can invite some of them on to his program and have a discussion.

My point is, don't waste your time or energy on the roughly 20-25% who can't be reasoned with and get together with the 75-80% that you can.

Mir (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

portland elmo - being originally from a third world country (india) trust me, the third world country will do MUCH BETTER without the big factory farms trying to help them out! I remember that during the famine in 1990's, USA had offered to send 'aid' to india thru the UN, in form of rice and other grains.
After taking the initial batch, india refused that since the grains that they received, were good only for consumption, but no good for re-planting them for the next season.
In most third world farmer, keep a small part of their harvest to re-plant the crop next year. Another small part goes to feed their family and the rest is sold in the market. But once they got these grains (which was good only for feeding themselves for till whenever it lasted) and the famine had destroyed the original grain they were left with nothing to re-plant.
They had to borrow money from unscruplous money lenders and banks to buys new grain to plant crops and this increased their suffering for many years to come. Noticing this India actually had banned 'food' aid from USA for many year!

sue (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@portland elmo: Not sure what getting rid of humongous factory farms has to do with poverty and food problems in the third world. It's not like we ship our pork and beef to Africa. Also, we can feed ourselves just fine with family farm models that are more healthy to people and the environment. Even better, if a majority became vegetarians, we could even more easily feed the world.
But even more important - you're in Portland - go see the "end of poverty" this Friday night with Thom at the Bagdad and you can see how we could have solved poverty years ago - but it doesn't serve the interests of those who control our current world economy. Ending starvation does not depend on factory farms. Oh and by the way, there's not enough fish left for the fishermen either - thanks to "factory fish-farming" and other overfishing.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@Sue: Obama was a B-I-G FISA and PATRIOT Acts supporter. He quibbled on various points but was all about the centralization of Executive power.

sue (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

@Adlof: bummer. I thought he'd argued against them. We're screwed.

Dave in CA (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

I listen to the show and almost every issue comes down to the same thing: the big corporations own and run the media, the military and the government for their own profit.

The only solution left is for the 99% of us to unite against the top 1%. Otherwise we are literally done. We the people can't take another hit like the last one the government/corporate partnership leveled on us.

Stan (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

sue - We're not srewed. We just have to keep on truckin. Most of the100's of thousands who worked for Obama were Progressive and Populist. We have to be in touch with them.

Stan (not verified) 11 years 36 weeks ago

Dave - Well Said.

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