What The Republicans Are Encouraging

DEM’S MARINE MISFIRE , in a Republican newspaper:

John Kerry’s heavily hyped cross-country bus tour stumbled out of the blocks yesterday, as a group of Marines publicly dissed the Vietnam War hero in the middle of a crowded restaurant.

John Kerry is a United States Senator, and recipient of the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, three purple hearts and many other honors. Yes these active-duty Marines — SOME IN UNIFORM! (thanks, Ollie) — felt free to act this way toward him in public. I can’t imagine members of the armed forces acting this way toward an honored veteran OR a U.S. Senator before the Republican hate machine started cranking out its horrible, divisive smear and fear campaigns.

If Kerry becomes President I have a feeling he will finally, finally do something about the right-wing takeover of the military culture. It’s bad for the military, bad for our country, bad for our traditions, and dangerous for democracy.

Republican Tactic

Remember what I wrote about Repubolicans accusing their opponents of what they are, in reality, actually themselves guilty of, as a tactic?

Bush Questions Kerry’s Record:

“President George W. Bush launched his counterattack against John Kerry on Friday, saying his Democratic rival has spent 19 years in the U.S. Senate with ‘no signature achievements.'”

An IM Conversation

Him: what about the promised stuff about the convention!!!!!?????????????

Me: that’s so last week…

Him: then blogging failed at the convention

Me: I’m joking

Him: everybody’s been saying: “see, i dont have no stinking deadline, so i’ll write a great piece later, and you’ll all love it”

Him: so now it’s like last week.

Him: you guys are even worse than the pros.

Him: at least they write some shit.

Me: I just f*****g woke up. Got home late, just woke up

Him: you just promise to right something good and then don’t even write SH*T?

Him: i didn’t say you had to do it now.

Him: you just sadi you weren’t goinbg to do it AT ALL.

Me: I also said I was joking

"Why don’t they get new jobs if they’re unhappy — or go on Prozac?"

Reuters, quoting Susan Sheybani, “an assistant to Bush campaign spokesman Terry Holt.”

When questioned about this, her response: “Oh, I was just kidding.”

Yeah. Sure.

Saw a pointer to this in the Salon article on John Kerry’s speech to the DNC. Thought it deserved more play, as an example of the underlying attitudes held by the Bush/Cheney campaign.

Thomas Leavitt, posting from Santa Cruz, CA

Seeing the forest: a "greenwash" example.

So, one of the first things that Dave made me hip to was how the right has spent billions creating a vast array of “front” organizations to push it’s message – and that one of the first things I should do whenever I see something suspect was to check it out on MediaTransparency.org.

So, I got this in my mailbox today (a posting to the Politech list):

——– Original Message ——–

Subject: IHS Environmental Art/Film Contest

Date: Wed, 28 Jul 2004 11:18:09 -0400

From: Max Borders

To: Declan McCullagh


This is Max Borders at aBetterEarth.org, a project of the Institute for Humane Studies. I may have sent you information about some of our environmental programs in the past, since I think your blog, like our website, is open to innovative approaches to environmental challenges, including utilizing market solutions and property rights.

I think your audience might be interested in our latest art/film contest. We are conducting an “EnviroAds” contest to encourage innovative thinking about the environmental challenges we face. We are looking for clever, outside the box thinking about some very old problems.

Here’s a description of the contest you could pass along:

$6,000 Enviro-Ads Film/Art Contest

A total of $6,000 in awards will be given to the creators of the best EnviroAds, as determined both by visitors to aBetterEarth.org website and by our distinguished panel of judges. Create and submit an ad that’s funny, satirical, creative, inspiring, ironic, sexy or dramatic. Win the top prize of $3,000, or one of the runners-up prizes of between $250 and $1,000.

We’re looking for original material that causes people to think about environmental issues in different ways. The goal is not persuasion per se, but to start a conversation. Make us think. Make us cry. Make us laugh out loud. For contest details, go herehttp://www.abetterearth.org/enviroads.

Deadline for submission is September 30, 2004. Winners will be announced in October.

If you have any questions, please contact Max Borders at [email protected]

Thank you very much, and good luck with your writing.


Max Borders



$$$ for environmental films/ads… sounds pretty cool, right?

Well, maybe… but: “innovative approaches to environmental challenges,

including utilizing market solutions and property rights” raises a red flag for me. These are right wing key words (as I’m sure most readers of this blog know). … and Declan has some pretty strong libertarian tendencies.

So, let’s see what MediaTransparency has to say

Institute for Humane Studies

Fairfax, VA 22030

Be sure to see the grants to George Mason University. The Institute for Humane Studies’ mission is to support “the achievement of a freer society by discovering and facilitating the development of talented, productive students, scholars, and other intellectuals who share a commitment to liberty and who demonstrate the potential to change significanly the current climate of opinion to one more congenial to the principles and practices of freedom.”

Among its many objectives, the Institute seeks “to enhance [young peoples’] career skills and their understanding of strategically targeted career paths through seminars, mentoring, internshps, and networking.” Toward that end, IHS holds summer seminars for students on free market economics and libertarian thought. Participation at these seminars is free. The Institute is also well enough funded to offer student fellowships of up to $17,500 for continued Study. Awards more than $400,000 a year.

… and how much moola has been rained on these folks? $5,600,500

Makes you wonder why they’re being so cheap about the prize money, eh? 🙂

Thomas Leavitt, posting from Santa Cruz, CA

NLRB erodes worker rights. Excuse: terrorism.

Saw this on the Labor Greens mailing list list:


Below is a blurb and and a link to my recent article on a new NLRB decision which cuts back on what are called Weingarten rights in labor law.

Weingarten rights are the watered-down version of Miranda rights you have not to incriminate yourself when you are arrested under the criminal law.

Under Weingarten, you have the right to demand the presence of a co-worker if your employer is interrogating you for possible discipline.

The new ruling holds that Weingarten applies only to union employees. The stated reason: Terrorism since 9/11/01.



Labor Board to Non-Union Workers: “You’re On Your Own When You Face The Boss”

by Ellis Boal

Reversing course for the fourth time in 30 years, in June the NLRB

announced it would no longer protect the right of a non-union worker

to refuse to participate in an investigatory interview without the

assistance of a co-worker. Read about the history of your Weingarten

rights and what rationale the NLRB has used this time.



The author notes that the NLRB, under Clinton in 2000, had established the previous rule. It will be interesting to see if this decision is reversed (and worker’s rights restored), under the Kerry Administration (and if it takes eight years to do so).

Thomas Leavitt, posting from Santa Cruz, CA