J. GoodrichOct 26, 2007
A recent Bloomberg/ LA Times poll tells us that those surveyed preferred the health insurance policies of the Democratic presidential candidates over those of the Republican candidates: Americans also back Democrats when presented with specific plans to deal with these issues: Just over half those surveyed say they favor requiring everyone to buy insurance; barring insurers from turning people down or charging extra for medical reasons; and subsidizing those who can't afford coverage. Those proposals have been offered by Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and former North Carolina Senator John Edwards. Even many Republicans like the Democratic ideas: Almost half of Republicans surveyed say they like the idea of requiring large businesses to either offer insurance to their workers or pay a tax to help cover the costs of those who can't afford it on their own, a plan put forth by Clinton, 59, Edwards, 54, and Illinois Senator Barack Obama, 46. More than seven out of 10 Democrats...
J. GoodrichOct 26, 2007
An attempt to relax the FCC rules about media concentration in specific markets is once again alive. The FCC Commissioner Kevin Martin wants to get rid of that troublesome 1970s ruling which barred media conglomerates from owning both a broadcast station and a newspaper in the same area. The Nation 's Peter Rothberg called Martin's proposal "both a mogul's dream and a citizen's nightmare.": As my friend and colleague John Nichols wrote last week, "Bush's chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has initiated a scheme to radically rewrite media ownership rules so that one corporation can own the daily newspapers, the weekly 'alternative' newspaper, the city magazine, suburban publications, the eight largest radio stations, the dominant broadcast and cable television stations, popular internet news and calendar sites, billboards and concert halls in even the largest American city." If all this gives you a feeling of deja vu , you are correct.
J. GoodrichOct 23, 2007
George Bush is asking the Congress for an additional 46 billion dollars for the Iraq war effort. The sum includes $3.6 billion more for the State Department. This is the same State Department which apparently does not know what happened to an earlier billion-dollar contract: The State Department does not know specifically what it received for a billion-dollar contract with security firm DynCorp International to provide training services for Iraqi police, a U.S. watchdog agency said on Tuesday. The Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) said it was forced to suspend its audit of the DynCorp contract after administration officials told investigators they had no confidence in their own accounting records. The inspector general said the agency had not validated the accuracy of invoices received before October 2006 and described bills and supporting documents as being in disarray. Among the problems identified before the audit was suspended were duplicate...
J. GoodrichOct 22, 2007
I'm never going to get the rules of American politics quite right. I have just begun to understand why a live boy in a politician's bed is equal not to a live girl but a dead girl, and now I have to learn all those intricate rules about how to rank the possible ill-treatment of political pets. For example, Mitt Romney once strapped the dog crate on top of the family car for an eight-hour fun tour, with the dog still in the crate. Is this really no worse, politically speaking, than the Clinton cat, Socks, being given away to a secretary whom the cat loved best anyway? Caitlin Flanagan seems to suggest so : Perhaps the cautionary tale of Socks the cat will make a difference. "Hillary's insistence that we follow her example in pet ownership, when she really should be on Cat Fancy's Most Wanted List, makes her a tiresome bore," Flanagan writes. So what are these pet-owning political rules? Do they follow the usual pattern of balance, I wonder, so that a Democratic presidential candidate...
J. GoodrichOct 18, 2007
Kate's post about the appointment of yet another contraception foe , Dr. Susan Orr , to head the U.S. contraception program made me dig up a poem I once created as a summary of the Republican policies concerning contraception: Condoms fail you; Diaphragms slip. Jellies stain you; And coils can nip. Withdrawal's willful; Flesh is weak. The pill is sinful; You might as well breed. -- J. Goodrich