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Last Updated:
Jun 25th, 2008 - 16:00:05 


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Voices of the Nation

Voices of the Nation
Drilling Instinct
Paul Krugman, The New York Times
Here in the Northwest with gas approaching $5 a gallon and a coastline to protect we see the game continue to ... "Blaming environmentalists for high energy prices, never mind the evidence, has been a hallmark of the Bush administration. Thus, in 2001 Dick Cheney attributed the California electricity crisis to environmental regulations that, he claimed, were blocking power-plant construction. He completely missed the real story, which was that energy companies — probably some of the same companies that participated in his secret task force, which was supposed to be drawing up a national energy strategy — were driving up prices by deliberately withholding electricity from the market." -with a link to The New York Times
Jun 25, 2008

Voices of the Nation
The War Election
Norman Solomon
"If the ultimate argument against the war is that it isn’t being won, the advocates for more war will have extra incentive to show that it can be won after all. If a steady argument against the war maintains that it was and is wrong -- that it is fundamentally immoral -- that’s a tougher sell to the savants of Capitol Hill and an array of corporate-paid journalists." –a feature at
Mar 7, 2008

Voices of the Nation
Deadly Illusions, Rest in Peace
Norman Solomon
"The cave-in on Capitol Hill -- supplying a huge new jolt of funds for the horrific war effort in Iraq -- is surprising only to those who haven't grasped our current circumstances... Public opinion polls aren't the same as political leverage. The Vietnam War went on for years after polling showed that most Americans opposed the war and even saw it as immoral." A sober reminder on Memorial Day, a feature at
May 28, 2007

Voices of the Nation
Go Green? Go West
Ronald Brownstein for the Los Angeles Times
The pressure from below is having an effect: "In the most dramatic example of regional coordination, California and its neighbors are pursuing a formal agreement on climate change. In February, Schwarzenegger and the Democratic governors of Arizona, New Mexico, Washington and Oregon agreed to devise a regional plan for mandatory reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, most likely through a cap-and-trade system... The participating states have agreed to devise a market-based regulation system by fall 2008, and sources involved in the design say they hope to entice into the plan not only other Western states but the Canadian province of British Columbia... Nevada, Idaho and Utah, the three Mountain states with Republican governors, haven't joined these efforts, but neither have they been completely immune to the trend." –with a link to the LA Times
Apr 17, 2007

Voices of the Nation
And So It Goes
David Ulin, Los Angeles Times
A memorial tribute to one of our favorite writers– we'll miss you, Kurt."'Slaughterhouse-Five,' Vonnegut's masterpiece, is the story of a World War II veteran named Billy Pilgrim who comes unstuck in time. The book is centered around the firebombing of Dresden, Germany, by Allied forces near the end of World War II, which Vonnegut survived as a prisoner of war. It's no understatement to suggest that this was the defining experience of the author's life, not because it made him bitter but because it opened up his point of view."- a thanks and a link to the LA Times
Apr 17, 2007

Voices of the Nation
Leave No Child Inside
Richard Louv
A growing movement beyond political divisions, Leave No Child Inside has many appeals for design, education, and health. But also, remember..."(A)n October issue of San Francisco magazine displays a vivid photograph of a small boy, eyes wide with excitement and joy, leaping and running on a great expanse of California beach, storm clouds and towering waves behind him. A short article explains that the boy was hyperactive, he had been kicked out of his school, and his parents had not known what to do with him—but they had observed how nature engaged and soothed him. So for years they took their son to beaches, forests, dunes, and rivers to let nature do its work... The photograph was taken in 1907. The boy was Ansel Adams." –with a link to Orion
Mar 5, 2007

Voices of the Nation
Gonzales Questions Habeas Corpus
Robert Parry
"In one of the most chilling public statements ever made by a U.S. Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales questioned whether the U.S. Constitution grants habeas corpus rights of a fair trial to every American... Gonzales’s remark left Specter, the committee’s ranking Republican, stammering...'Wait a minute,' Specter interjected. 'The Constitution says you can’t take it away except in case of rebellion or invasion. Doesn’t that mean you have the right of habeas corpus unless there’s a rebellion or invasion?' " – a thanks to Michael Kemp and a link to The Baltimore Chronicle
Jan 26, 2007

Voices of the Nation
Surrender of Language Risks Loss of Destiny
Orville Schell
"Orwell was not the first historical figure to point out how, when a people lose control of their language, they may also lose control of their destiny... In observing the downfall of Athens during the Peloponnesian Wars, Thucydides described a similar decline: 'To fit in with the change of events, words too had to change,' he wrote as Athens launched the misbegotten Sicilian campaign that led to its downfall." – with a thanks to Wanda B. and a link to SF
Dec 15, 2006

Voices of the Nation
The New Media Offensive for the Iraq War
Norman Solomon
"Implicit in such media coverage is the idea that the real legitimacy for U.S. war policymaking rests with the president, not the Congress. When I ponder that assumption,I think about 42-year-old footage of the CBS program 'Face the Nation.' The show's host on that 1964 telecast was the widely esteemed journalist Peter Lisagor, who told his guest: 'Senator, the Constitution gives to the president of the United States the sole responsibility for the conduct of foreign policy.' 'Couldn't be more wrong,' Sen. Wayne Morse (of Oregon) broke in with his sandpapery voice. 'You couldn't make a more unsound legal statement than the one you have just made. This is the promulgation of an old fallacy that foreign policy belongs to the president of the United States. That's nonsense.' " -a feature at
Nov 24, 2006

Voices of the Nation
2-4-6 HATE
Tom Owens
This author, famous for his Teaching Tolerance pieces writes about a Northwest and national phenomenon: "High school sports chants can turn racist, and some schools have come up with ways to make the fans more tolerant... 'By game's end, South Kitsap's players and coach apologized to Foss for fan behavior in the stands. The next day, South Kitsap's athletic director, principal and student body president co-signed and delivered a letter of apology to Foss, just hours after South Kitsap Principal Dave Columbini learned about the taunts.' " -with a thanks to Porch Greg and a link to
Nov 20, 2006

Voices of the Nation
Are We Numb to Numbers?
Steven Laffoley
A needed antidote to official bluster and blindness of consequences: "At its best, despite its dark times and its dark acts, America has never been a nation that remained numb to numbers. Rather, at its best, America was, and should be again, a nation that looks upon the tired, the poor, and the huddled masses of the world community, with compassion and empathy." – with a link to
Oct 15, 2006

Voices of the Nation
Iraq Is Not a Quagmire
Norman Solomon
"But to focus arguments on whether the Iraq war should be called a 'quagmire' is to flatten moral issues, transmuting them into matters of strategy and efficacy. That may sound like appropriate journalistic attention to practical politics. However, if a war is wrong, the wisdom of supporting it shouldn't hinge on whether it's a quagmire or a cakewalk." – a feature at
Oct 7, 2006

Voices of the Nation
A Jewish Soldier Witnesses Nuremberg
Clancy Sigal
What are we losing by legalizing torture and secret tribunals? "Sixty years ago, the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg handed down its first verdict against Nazi war criminals. The Nuremberg trials were structured as a blueprint for something new in international law law... 'crimes against humanity' and 'crimes against peace'."So goes the introduction to this radio piece by the author of Going Away, Clancy Sigal: "The U.S. War Department was determined that Goering and the other Nazis leaders would receive a fair trial. At Nuremberg, there would be no secret evidence or closed proceedings. The Allies believed that would betray their ideal of restoring democracy in Germany." – with a link to
Oct 7, 2006

Voices of the Nation
The Cute Katrina Cottage
Ron Schererm, Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
"A model home here that gives Katrina's displaced an alternative to trailer living is starting to take the country by storm... The Katrina cottage - with living quarters about the size of a McMansion bathroom -is now appealing to people well beyond the flood plain. Californians want to build one in their backyards to use for rental income to help with the mortgage payment. Modestly paid kayakers in Colorado see it as a way to finally afford a house. Elsewhere, people envision building one so a parent can live nearby. Flying in the face of a 'big house' trend, designers of these tiny abodes seem to have found a new housing niche. Some experts cite an interest by some Americans in downsizing their habitats, a reaction to the supersized home, and note the challenge of heating and cooling a big house at a time when family budgets are flat."
–with a thanks to Raging Grannie and a link to The Christian Science Monitor

Oct 7, 2006

Voices of the Nation
The Environmental Load of 300 Million: How Heavy?
Brad Knickerbocker, staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
Can Portland keep growing? Or are we loving her to death? "A flotilla of 100 fishing boats, rafts, and kayaks crossed the Willamette River to a downtown park in Portland, Ore., the other evening to rally for the Pacific Northwest's reigning icon: wild salmon, now plummeting toward extinction due to development across much of the Columbia River basin... It was a typical event for a 'green' city that has one of the best records in the United States for recycling, reducing greenhouse-gas emissions, using alternative energy, and providing public transportation and bike paths...But Portland's amenities - its natural setting along the Willamette River and its youthful techie vibe - are drawing a surge of new people..." - with a link to The Christian Science Monitor
Sep 29, 2006

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