Thursday, April 21, 2005

Democracy Now: Remembering Marla Ruzicka, Rep. Maxine Waters, Kate Orlovsky, Arun Gupta; wotisitgood4; Liberal Oasis; Jude (Iddybud) on John Edwards

Democracy Now! (Marcia: "Always worth watching") has many things to note including a segment on Marla Ruzicka:

Headlines for April 21, 2005
- Over 70 Corpses Found in Iraq
- Iyad Allawi Survives Assassination Attempt
- Five Iraqi Journalists Die In Week-Long Span
- GOP Senators Reconsidering John Bolton Nomination
- Bush Administration Sued Over No Child Left Behind Act
- Ecuadorian President Ousted After Protests
- Bush Signs Bankruptcy Overhaul Law
- Court Seeks to Conduct Sibel Edmonds Trial in Secret
- AIPAC Fires Two Employees Suspected of Espionage
- Columbia & Yale Grad Students Enter 4th Day of Strike

Remembering Humanitarian Aid Worker & Activist Marla Ruzicka
On Saturday 28-year-old Marla Ruzicka was killed in a car bombing. She was the founder of the Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict. Since the launch of the so-called war on terror, Marla spent most of her time in Iraq and Afghanistan documenting and recording the casualties of war.

Haiti's Aristide Calls For His Restoration to Power
We hear excerpts from a rare public appearance by ousted Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. We also talk to Rep. Maxine Waters and Kate Orlovsky, student director at the Hastings Human Rights Project for Haiti. The group has just filed a petition with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on behalf of Haiti's former Prime Minister Yvon Neptune.

U.S. Funding Iraqi Militias Led by Baathists As Part of Counter-Insurgency Operation
We talk to Arun Gupta of The Indypendent on the proliferation of illegal militias in Iraq. The U.S. government is not only aware of these militias but is arming, training and funding them for use in their counter-insurgency operations.

Natalie notes our friend Luke of wotisitgood4 (and says "thank you back" to Luke):

ill try to get to it by the weekend - but briefly, it seems we are close to crunch time - we've got this crazy 'justice sunday' thing coming - which seems like it mite be a watershed of sorts, and it seems we are only a week or two away from the nucular option, and DeLay is getting crazier - and there are a whole bunch of other things i wanna try to pull together - but its kinda hard to know where to stop - id never have really thought the social security was so intertwined with the morning-after pill - welcome to bizarro-bush-world.seriously tho - the justice-sunday (lafkoff wants to do a counter-event called 'social-justice-sunday) event is a spooky moment - and if we add some DeLay and some constitution burning and stuff, it looks like we might be in for a helluva time.

Lynda notes this strong entry from Bill Scher over at Liberal Oasis:

So how should Dems go forward?
So far, Dems did not approach this the way
LiberalOasis suggested last month.
Instead of holding up Bolton as the embodiment of GOP foreign policy, Dems took a more non-ideological approach, zeroing in on Bolton’s abusive management practices and manipulation of intelligence.
(In fact, Sen. Dodd went out of his way yesterday to say, “this has nothing to do with substantive disagreement.”)
The ideological approach that LO preferred would have made it harder to snag a GOP vote and actually kill the nomination, although, it would have the long-term benefit of crystalizing Dem foreign policy principles, regardless of the fate of the nomination.
Of course, Dems need to stick with their present strategy (it is working after all).
But if there is pushback, a large component of it will be ideological (while the other large component will be smears).
While Dems understandably don’t want to get distracted from the points that are working for them right now, they shouldn’t feel any need to duck ideological attacks. They should address them head-on.
Dodd has made that harder by insisting this isn’t at all about Bolton’s views.
But you can still make the ideological point in a more subtle way, in a way that’s rooted in what the Dems have already been saying.
Simply put, that such a dishonest and abusive person is not the person who should be the face of America at the UN.
Such a person cannot advance democracy, promote global stability or help improve the UN bureaucracy.

Eddie e-mails to note Jude of Iddybud: "She's got the rundown on the John Edwards podcast and I draw everyone's attention to the section on the Bankruptcy bill:"

Kelly Gossnan and Ben Goodman asked how John would have voted on the recent Bankruptcy bill, to which John replied that his vote would have been: "No, No, No." He said it would only serve to put people who are deep in debt in a much worse place. He used the example of a single mother with a lot of medical bills who has no honest means to pay them, regardless of how hard she'd tried. Under the current bill, which Edwards claims is "badly written law", she would be stuck with those medical bills, and that this is inconsistent with what we believe in America. Elizabeth was a bankruptcy attorney, so she can speak from experience on the issue. She said, while the Homestead Exemption was a good idea, inconsistent state-to-statelimits on the amount of exemption serve to make it "bad part of the law". For example, in Florida and Texas, there is no limit, meaning that you can go and buy a million-dollar home and then file bankruptcy. Credit card companies, banks, and loan companies were the ones "all for" this law. Credit card companies have tried to get it passed for a decade. a point they wanted to stress was that many people misunderstand (or misjudge) when they think that, if you're poor and seeking ways out of debt, that you are taking no personal responsibility. That's not necessarily so, said Elizabeth Edwards. In cases of bankruptcy, judges have been able to discern honest efforts on the part of citizens to be responsible in the past, but will now have far less opportunity to decide on idividual cases with the passing of the current "bad" bill. More people will be stuck with debt. The practice known as predatory lending will be able to thrive. People who are already having a difficult economic time will be preyed upon. The saddest and most ironic thing I heard was that they still get credit offers in the mail, on a regular basis, addressed to their son Wade, who passed away nine years ago.

The e-mail address for this site is

So where's the "Note" that's always at the end of these? -- you ask. Blogger (program used for the other site) is down for "maintenance" so you get this first.
Guess what else you get? A working site today. According to Shirley, the other site was down for six hours today. Including three hours after Blogger's announcement page stated that they had fixed the problem.

[Note: This post originally appeared at the mirror site for The Common Ills.]