Techies, Politics Now Click

"After years as political agnostics, the programmers and engineers who orchestrated the technological revolution of the 1990s are trying to reboot government," writes Joseph Menn. "They have money, earned during the boom. They have time, found since the bust. And they are using their technological savvy to recruit even casual Internet users to their causes." Menn looks at the new "techno-populists" such as MoveOn.org and DigitalConsumer.org.


Drug Industry Front Scares Seniors With Radio Ads

A bipartisan group of lawmakers has condemned a radio scare campaign sponsored by the U.S. pharmaceutical industry. "In a bid to defeat legislation that would allow the 'reimportation' of American-made drugs from Canada and Europe, a lobby group calling itself the Seniors Coalition is questioning the safety of Canadian and European prescription drugs," the Toronto Star reports. Reimported drugs are cheaper for seniors to buy. The legislation is part of the $400 billion, 10-year overhaul of the Medicare.


Corporate Criminals Give Big

Thirty-one corporate criminals gave more than $9 million to the Democratic and Republican parties during the 2002 election cycle, according to a report by Corporate Crime Reporter. They gave $7.2 million to Republicans (77 percent) and $2.1 million to Democrats (23 percent). The top five corporations, ranked by amount given to politicians, were Archer Daniels Midland ($1.7 million), Pfizer ($1.1 million), Chevron ($875,400), Northrop Grumman ($741,250), and American Airlines ($655,593).


Bush's 9/11 Coverup

"While the administration of President George W. Bush is aggressively positioning itself as the world leader in the war on terrorism, some families of the Sept. 11 victims say that the facts increasingly contradict that script," reports Eric Boehlert. "The White House long opposed the formation of a blue-ribbon Sept. 11 commission, some say, and even now that panel is underfunded and struggling to build momentum.


Stossel's Political Promotion

John Stossel has been promoted to co-anchor of ABC's 20/20 TV program. According to a source within the network, "These are conservative times... the network wants somebody to match the times." Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) points to Stossel's history of "bungled facts and twisted logic" and asks if "a record of credible and accurate reporting" shouldn't be more important than "matching the perceived political climate."


Money and Politics in Florida

Election campaign records following the past legislative session in Florida show that sugar and telephone companies both gave the most and got the most in return. Loosened pollution restrictions in the Everglades and an impending increase in telephone service rates, the largest in history, appear to be the payoff for more then $3.5 million the industries gave to state-level candidates and committees.


George Bush, the 9/11 President, Plots His Re-Election

President Bush's advisers, led by Karl Rove, are "planning a sprint of a campaign that would start, at least officially, with his acceptance speech at the Republican convention, a speech now set for Sept. 2 [2004]. ... Mr. Bush's advisers said they chose the date so the event would flow into the commemorations of the third anniversary of the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks. ... The strategy ... is intended to highlight what Mr.


Anti-Chavez All The Time

As the so-called general strike against Venezuelean President Hugo Chavez comes to an end, Venezuelan television will begin broadcasting advertising again. For the two months of the strike, "the only commercials on Venezuelan TV were the opposition's relentless barrage of powerful and often witty


Congress Merges With Wall Street

A new poster depicts President Bush speaking on the floor of Congress. Or is it the stock exchange trading floor? Or is it really both? Produced by Public Campaign, which works for campaign finance reform, the poster includes thirteen charts detailing how big corporate campaign contributions from leading industries are buying America, what they are getting for their political investments and what the rest of us pay in higher taxes, dirty air and water, billions lost from our retirement funds, and the like.



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