The Transport Workers Union is going to court today in hopes of blocking New York City from forcing bus drivers to transport any Occupy Wall Street protesters after the New York police department commandeered at least three buses to take many of the 700 protesters off the Brooklyn Bridge this weekend. Last week, the TWU voted to support the Occupy Wall Street movement and called the order to bus prisoners “a blatant act of political retaliation.” “TWU Local 100 supports the protesters on Wall Street and takes great offense that the mayor and NYPD have ordered operators to transport citizens who were exercising their constitutional right to protest — and shouldn’t have been arrested in the first place,” TWU President John Samuelsen said. Samuelson said that by instructing the drivers to follow the police directive, the Metropolitan Transit Authority violated its contract with the Local 100.
Yet the Observer notes that there was one interview with a protester that Fox failed to air. Last week, a producer from Greta van Susteren’s show interviewed a demonstrator named Jesse LaGreca. LaGreca offered an eloquent defense of the protests and growing economic inequality in the United States, and scolded the Fox staffer for his network’s role as a far-right “propaganda machine.” LaGreca noted Fox’s parent corporation was under investigation by the Department of Justice and that the network was “wasting time” on subjects such as President Obama’s birth certificate and Solyndra.
The Fox producer promised LaGreca he would “put any message you want out there, to give you fair coverage,” yet when the show was aired Wednesday, the footage was nowhere to be found. Watch LaGreca’s interview with Fox:
As the Observer writes, “no news organization is under obligation to air every interview they?ve filmed.” But it raises eyebrows to watch a network that totes itself as “Fair and Balanced” not air an interview with a protester who intelligently defended his cause and criticized the network’s coverage while it continues to take constant potshots at the demonstrators.
On Saturday, our Nobel prize-winning Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, slammed those who want to gut clean energy programs:
Chu dismissed criticism from those who he said “are ready to wave the white flag and declare defeat.”
The United States faces a choice, he said, to sit on the sidelines or try to win the “clean energy race” with China, Germany and other countries.
He said the U.S. “can’t afford not to” invest in clean energy.
“It’s not enough for our country to invent clean energy technologies, we have to make them and use them, too,” Chu said. “Invented in America, made in America and sold around the world. That’s how we’ll create good jobs and lead in the 21st century.”
Chu was speaking at the Solar Decathlon where collegiate teams from around the world to build model solar homes. He didn’t mention the over-hyped Solyndra story by name, but he defended the tremendous value the loan program brings to Americans:
Energy Secretary Steven Chu said a stimulus law program that expired Friday will help develop the world’s largest wind farm in Oregon, several large solar power farms in California and Nevada, and the installation of solar panels on 750 rooftops in 28 states, among other projects.
Greenwire (subs. req’d) reports that DOE has “closed 28 loans for a total of more than $16 billion” under the loan program:
“These loan guarantee projects will generate enough clean electricity to power more than two-and-a-half-million homes,” Chu said. “And combined with our other loan programs, they’re expected to support more than 60,000 direct jobs, plus jobs throughout the supply chain”….
“In past times of national stress, we took the long view and invested in our future,” Chu said. “We need to take the long view and invest in the future. That’s what made America great, and that’s how we will prevail.”
It’s great to see Chu defending this core job-creating, pollution-reducing strategy. Unlike many in Washington, he seems to understand both what this country needs and what the American people want.
As Climate Progress reported last week, a major bipartisan public opinion survey found:
In dozens of focus groups we have conducted this month across the country on a wide variety of subjects, when voters are asked where they would like new jobs in their state to come from, the first words out of their mouths are almost always the same ? clean energy and related technology. Voters believe that the clean energy economy is here and is growing, and they want their state to have a part of it.
As a doctor, I live and breath healthcare. I’m one of those doctors who in smack dab in the[...]
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GOP to Cain: "You can only talk about our racism
if you're saying we don't have any" (Gage Skidmore)This should have been bad news for Rick Perry:
In the early years of his political career, Rick Perry began hosting fellow lawmakers, friends and supporters at his family?s secluded West Texas hunting camp, a place known by the name painted in block letters across a large, flat rock standing upright at its gated entrance.
?Niggerhead,? it read.
?It?s just a name,? said Haskell County Judge David Davis, sitting in his courtroom and looking at a window. ?Like those are vertical blinds. It?s just what it was called. There was no significance other than as a hunting deal.?
Okay, but outside of Texas, you'd think it would not be controversial to take offense at the n-word. You might even expect the only African American in the Republican presidential race to strongly condemn Rick Perry for spending his time at this obviously offensively named place.
Taking offense at the n-word really shouldn't be a controversial position:
A Perry rival, Herman Cain, said on ?Fox News Sunday? that it was ?insulting? that Mr. Perry and his family had used a camp with such a racially charged name.
There ?isn?t a more vile, negative word than the N-word, and for him to leave it there as long as he did, until before, I hear, they finally painted over it, is just plain insensitive to a lot of black people in this country,? said Mr. Cain, an African-American who is the former chief executive of the Godfather?s Pizza chain.
As Jed Lewison said, there's really no way you can argue with Cain's statement that the name of Rick Perry's family's hunting grounds was "insulting" and "insensitive."
Well, unless you're a Republican. In which case, the real villain of this story isn't Perry. It's Cain. Via Mother Jones:
At RedState, Erick Erickson concludes: "It also seems to be a slander Herman Cain is picking up and running with as a way to get into second place." Glenn Reynolds remarks that until now Cain's "big appeal is that he's not just another black race-card-playing politician." Over at the Daily Caller, Matt Lewis calls Cain's remarks "a cheap shot, and, perhaps a signal that Cain is willing to play the race card against a fellow Republican when it benefits him."
And of course Rush Limbaugh finds it "really disappointing" that Cain is "piggybacking on it trying to capitalize on it, essentially letting the mainstream media (in this case, the Washington Post) set the narrative."
Oh, how fickle those Republicans are. Herman Cain's race was an asset when he was insisting that the tea party (aka the Republican Party) isn't racist because he's a card-carrying member. And his race sure was convenient when he spouted those beloved Republican talking points about how African Americans have been "brainwashed" into supporting the Democratic Party.
But now that Cain's dared to tiptoe around the issue of racism in a not-so-favorable-to-Republicans kind of way?by taking the radical position that the n-word is "insulting"?well, now Cain's morphed into your typical Angry Black Man Playing the Race Card. And the Republicans aren't going to have any of that.
The Greek Finance Ministry released its estimated economic statistics this morning, and they were brutal. It's not that Greece's budget deficit is growing despite austerity measures, it's because of them, exactly as prominent economists understood and[...]
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(Mark E. Andersen)Last Friday was the deadline for school unions to apply for recertification in Wisconsin. By applying for recertification they have notified the State of Wisconsin that they want an election.
[A]bout 212 met the deadline, according to the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission.
"We're declaring to the world we're still here. We're not going away," said Doug Perry, a fifth-grade teacher at Maple Grove School in Greenfield whose union filed for recertification.
While 212 unions sounds like a lot, it is but a fraction of the unions associated with the 425 school districts across the state. There is no tracking system in the state to know how many local unions exist across all of the school districts; however, each district could have multiple unions?one for teachers, one for custodial staff, etc.
Unions that do not recertify will still exist; however, they will not have any official power to bargain with school districts. The Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) is aware of about 300 locals that are currently going forward without a contract.
Council spokeswoman Christina Brey said the unions that chose to hold elections wanted to preserve their identity, but that cost, confusion and the compressed time frame to seek recertification likely deterred or prevented others from doing the same. The law took effect in March.
"Either way, they all remain unions and all will continue their advocacy in local schools and communities," she said.
Recertification will be difficult. The law requires that 51 percent of all members vote yes. A member who does not vote is counted as a no. It is clear that this law was never about reigning in costs or doing anything with the budget. It was about one thing and one thing only: busting unions.
Our regular featured content-On This Day In History October 3 by TheMomCatPunting the Pundits by TheMomCatEvening Edition by ek hornbeckThese featured articles-Koch Bros. Fund Iran for Prosperity by TheMomCatAnother Attorney General Exits Multi-State[...]
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North Carolina State Senator James Forrester is militantly opposed to enlightened acceptance of gay human beings. He obviously does not give a damn that militant non-acceptance of gay people is the main cause of the elevated rate of suicide for gay[...]
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California Gov. Jerry Brown on Sunday signed a bill that prevents the state from banning the practice of male circumcision, Reuters reports.
An organization -- dubbed the Male Genital Mutilation Bill -- led an effort to make the practice of circumcising minors a misdemeanor crime. The group hoped to put the measure to a vote on a November ballot, and garnered thousands of signatures in support of the initiative.
Back in June, the Anti-Defamation League, and a number of Jewish and Muslim individuals filed suit to block the measure, arguing that the state doesn't have power to enforce the ban. The practice of circumcision, of course, has long been a religious rite and critics of the measure argue a ban would violate the First Amendment. And in July a judge struck down the measure, saying it infringes on religious freedom, Reuters reports.
The bill, sponsored by Democratic Assemblyman Mike Gatto, ensures that a circumcision ban will not be enacted at the local level. Instead, it would have to be handled at the state level.
Matthew Hess, president of the Male Genital Mutilation Bill, told TPM via email that "California has taken a big step backward by enacting this statute."
"Circumcision is elective surgery that an adult should be allowed to choose only for himself," Hess added. "It shouldn't be forced onto anyone, male or female. If California won't allow its cities to regulate this painful and sexually damaging practice, then it needs to do the right thing here by enacting a statewide law prohibiting forced circumcision of boys."
Brown's office said the governor's signature "speaks for itself," but wouldn't add additional comment.
Read more here.