Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Appalling news roundup for Wednesday
• California Governor Schwarzenegger is trying to recast himself as a Republican environmentalist, but he couldn't find time to meet with an attorney representing Ecuadoran efforts to have Chevron pay for $6.1 billion worth of environmental damage in the Amazon region. Peter Nicholas writes that "Chevron has given about $566,000 to the governor's campaign committees and causes, and donated $50,000 to help pay for his second inauguration. In June, Chevron gave $250,000 to the state Republican Party, which aired television ads promoting his reelection." You might say that Schwarzenegger knows on which side his faucet's dripping.
• Vice President Cheney's giving the commencement address tomorrow at one of the nation's most conservative universities, Brigham Young (BYU). But there have been protests by faculty and students. Now Ralph Nader has been invited to speak later the same evening. Are the campuses finally "heating up"?
• Be sure to watch Bill Moyers' "Buying the War" tonight (PBS at 9 pm EST). Watch in wonder as you learn what can be done with smoke and mirrors.David Swanson remarks that "spending that 90 minutes ... will actually save you time, because you'll never watch television news again."
• Amnesty International reports that "American Indians and natives of Alaska are 2 1/2 times more likely to be raped or sexually assaulted than women of other ethnic groups in the United States." Read this one.
• Talk about favoring the prosecution! Judge Grafton Biddle (a lovely name!), 57, was having sex in his chambers with prosecutor Laurie Steinman, 29, and would occasionally slip into the womens' showers after their Navy Seals training class for a quickie. Biddle, a former prosecutor himself, resigned and Steinman was fired. Biddle was betrayed by his fourth wife. Ain't marriage great?!
• Miss America has gone undercover.
• The Dept. of Veterans Affairs has relented and will allow the symbol of the Wiccan religion—a 5-pointed star or "pentacle"—on military grave markers. When George Bush was Governor of Texas he told ABC News, "I don't think witchcraft is a religion." He's right. It's more like a political party.