Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Looking back to the last presidential election cycle

John Edwards' campaign speech from the primary season:
"Today, under George W. Bush, there are two Americas, not one: One America that does the work, another America that reaps the reward. One America that pays the taxes, another America that gets the tax breaks. One America that will do anything to leave its children a better life, another America that never has to do a thing because its children are already set for life."

A Kerry endorsement from Nashville Scene:
George Bush's judgment is so tragically simple as to make us fearful for this nation. When an enemy in Afghanistan attacked us, he instead attacked Iraq. When the economy tanked, he gave money to the rich. And when he wasn't doing any of the above, he was putting on his cowboy hat, swaggering across America and projecting the image of America as Badass.

George Bush ran on a platform of compassionate conservatism. But when the world got dicey and his tiny viewfinder of a mind couldn't handle reality, he morphed into a schoolyard bully. If anything makes this newspaper regret this man's presidency, it is that the strongest nation in the world doesn't need to be a bully. Bullies are bullies because they're insecure and weak and dumb. This nation is none of the above. George Bush is all of above.
Pork: nothing new.... [from Grist Magazine]

The monstrous corporate tax legislation that recently sailed through Congress -- passing in the Senate 69-17 last Monday, only days after it passed in the House -- has given the environmental community a terrible case of Coulda-Been-Worse Syndrome.

"We're well aware that this bill reflects the kind of sausage-making, vote-building, pigs-at-the-trough mentality that Capitol Hill, at its worst, is known for," said Kevin Curtis, vice president of government affairs at National Environmental Trust. "But the fact is that enviros in Washington have put every ounce of our energy into keeping this bill from becoming substantially worse in terms of bad energy policy and industry handouts than it is now."

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), however, could spare no kind words for the pork-laden package, which President Bush is expected to sign into law within days. "[A]t 633 pages and $148 billion, [this legislation] serves as a sad example of the way business is done around here," he said in a lengthy, withering statement submitted on the congressional record. He complained about "billions and billions of dollars in tax breaks for big corporations" and lamented that "special interests continue to rule at the expense of the hardworking American taxpayer."

Among the biggest corporate winners in this great special-interest giveaway are -- surprise, surprise -- energy interests.
This was happy and long overdue news:
Tom Delay Subpoenaed for Role in 2003 Texas Redistricting
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R) was subpoenaed in Houston to an October 25, 2004 deposition concerning his role in the controversial dispute between Democratic Legislators and the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) during last year's redistricting struggle. Texas State Representative Lon Burnam (D--Fort Worth) subpoenaed DeLay in his ongoing lawsuit challenging DPS's use of public funds to achieve political ends and for its destruction of documents following the exodus of Democratic Legislators from the State to prevent a quorum in a redistricting effort that Democrats claim was illegal.
We flew to Europe on election day, part of a group of Cal alumni on our way to St Petersburg, and all groaned when the pilot announced, just as we were about to land in Frankfurt, that Bush had won. Our holiday in Russia began with a very depressed Berkeley crowd. Jet lag was nothing compared to election letdown. We had hoped and then been disappointed.

I have not abandoned hope. But we need an overwhelming victory, one the repugnicans cannot steal or subvert or question with any credibility.

Power to the People!
--the BB

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