Aug 28: Pakistan flooding – is the world coming to the US? again?
Aug 27th, 2010 by Sam


The floods have been described as epic – more vast than Haiti, Katrina, and the tsunami…

Mercy Corps is an international aid organization based in Portland, Oregon and is right in the thick of things.

Joy Portella is director of communications and leads a team of professionals dedicated to documenting and reporting Mercy Corps’ work in 40 countries.  She has traveled to global hotspots including North Korea, the Gaza Strip and Haiti.

She joins us to talk about it all:

  • Describe the flood in US terms – if it happened here, what would it look like?
  • What are aid agencies doing – how does it work?
  • We hear conservatives complaining that everyone comes to the US for everything…What have other governments committed?  Are there aid agencies from other countries that are as involved as American agencies?
  • What is it like working with Pakistan?  Given the political tensions that exist right now, does that affect your work?
  • Is there ‘donor fatigue’ for this crisis, given how many other things are in the news – the Gulf of Mexico, etc.?
The Lucky Tax
Aug 27th, 2010 by Sam

Abigail Disney, a filmmaker and an heiress to the Disney family, defended the estate tax eloquently: “My grandfather [Roy Disney] would be the first person to tell you that he’d managed to amass his fortune not in spite of, but because of, the American system,’’ she said. “After all, without reliable and safe roads there would be no such thing as Disneyland; without high-functioning legal systems and a well-regulated business environment there would have been no copyright protection for Mickey Mouse.’’

It’s a simple, powerful point: Even if they’re talented and have made every right move, the extremely wealthy do owe something to a system that provides them with countless legal protections and business advantages.

Aug 21: 1/5 think Obama is Muslim?
Aug 20th, 2010 by Sam

2010-08-21-samantha-clemens.Mp31 in 5 Americans believe Obama is a Muslim?? What is wrong with this country? If you oppose his policies, then fine. Oppose them. But this made-up stuff?

The Rev. Franklin Graham Says President Obama was ‘Born a Muslim’

“I think the president’s problem is that he was born a Muslim, his father was a Muslim. The seed of Islam is passed through the father like the seed of Judaism is passed through the mother. He was born a Muslim, his father gave him an Islamic name,” Graham told CNN’s John King in a televised interview that aired Thursday night.

Doesn’t seem to matter WHAT anyone says… The truth about Obama’s birth certificate

In June, the Obama campaign released a digitally scanned image of his birth certificate to quell speculative charges that he might not be a natural-born citizen. But the image prompted more blog-based skepticism about the document’s authenticity. And recently, author Jerome Corsi, whose book attacks Obama, said in a TV interview that the birth certificate the campaign has is “fake.”

Obama a Muslim? Rumors gain steam, defying facts

NEW YORK — “President Obama is a Muslim.” “He’s not an American citizen.” “He wasn’t even born here.”

Blame it on the media, or on human nature. All presidents deal with image problems – that they’re too weak or too belligerent, too far left or far right. But Obama also faces questions over documented facts, in part because some people identify more with the rumormongers than the debunkers.

Are Americans total numbskulls?

God help us. Could so many Americans really be that dumb, ill-informed, paranoid, gullible and goofy? It must be tricky being Barack Obama, winding down the U.S. presence in volatile Iraq, trying to keep Afghanistan from degenerating, pondering war with Iran, even as, according to the latest bulletin, one in five Americans thinks he is a Muslim.

Why not just believe he’s an alien from outer space? Or a Manchurian Candidate, programmed by, say, the Chinese to bring America to ruin?

Crazy times.

It’s also dismaying that so many Americans are opposed to the mosque near Ground Zero. In America you can worship wherever you want, regardless of religious belief. We protect religious minorities here. This isn’t merely the law: It’s a core value. This goes back to the Pilgrims, I seem to recall. The backers of the mosques are the good guys, the ones who preach tolerance. There should be no hedging on this at all from American leaders: If we can’t allow a mosque in lower Manhattan we might as well close shop for good and turn out the lights.

Aug 14: Sally Steenland: The Mosque, Islamophobia, and Christianity
Aug 12th, 2010 by Sam


We have separation of church and state in the constitution, right?  We have churches and synagogues everywhere.  There already IS a mosque near the World Trade Center site, so what’s with the conservative noise machine?

Sarah Palin demanded that “peaceful Muslims” step and “refudiate” the plan; Newt Gingrich denounced the building of such a “mosque” as long as Saudi Arabia bars construction of churches and synagogues; Rick Lazio, a Republican campaigning for the governorship of New York state, asserted that the plan somehow subverted the right of New Yorkers “to feel safe and be safe.”  “Mosque controversy is just the beginning,” Stephan Salisbury,, Aug 10, 2020

So, Americans are scared of Islamic terrorists.  Newt, at least, calls it “radical Islam,” making a distinction (if you can call it that) between Islam and “radical” Islam.  Sarah doesn’t make such distinctions.  And people are getting all fired up, protesting the proposed mosque in lower Manhattan as well as those in Tennessee, California, Georgia, Kentucky, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

So, is our perception of the religion of Islam correct?  And how would Christianity stand up if it was scrutinized with the same lens that we use for Islam?

Sally Steenland is Senior Policy Advisor for Faith and Progressive Policy at the Center for American Progress.  She authored The Distorted Lens of Islamophibia: We Need to Assess Islam Based on Reality, Not Rants, and  joins us to talk about the American perception of Islam and what Christianity would look like through the same distorted lens we use for Islam.

SOURCE: AP/Mark Lennihan This building near Ground Zero in Manhattan is the proposed site of a future 13-story mosque and Islamic cultural center.

The Distorted Lens of Islamophobia
Aug 11th, 2010 by Sam

What if we saw Christianity through the same lens that distorts Islam?

Many people have persuasively argued over the past several years that Islamophobia weakens our security and threatens our values. The fact that Muslim Americans strongly denounce terrorism, prove their patriotism, and serve their communities and nation every single day has been demonstrated in ways large and small. Yet anti-Muslim hateful speech still thrives.

SOURCE: AP/Mark Lennihan This building near Ground Zero in Manhattan is the proposed site of a future 13-story mosque and Islamic cultural center.

Aug 7: Anthony Weiner, Sherrod video wingnut – Dr Pezzi
Aug 6th, 2010 by Sam


Anthony Weiner smackdown (go Anthony!)

Anthony Weiner get in the faces of the Republicans who were BLOCKING health care for 9-11 responders using RULES while they were SUPPOSEDLY in favor of it – i.e. trying to have it both ways…..  (Anthony is a HERO though the last name is unfortunate, isn’t it?)

Sharrod video wingnut

The guy behind the Sharrod video where she was supposedly a racist – you aren’t going to BELIEVE this…
“Dr Kevin Pezzi…claims to be responsible for ‘over 850 inventions’ and schemes such as a ‘magic bullet’ for cancer, a ‘robotic chef,’ and sexual inventions like ‘penile enlargement techniques’ and ‘ways to tighten the vagina’ (because ‘men like women with tight vaginas’). Pezzi has started multiple websites, from term paper helpers to a sexual help site that answers ‘your questions about sexual attraction, pleasure, performance, and libido’ (Pezzi is qualified to do so because ‘No doctor in the world knows more about sexual pleasure than I do’).
“Pezzi also claims to have ‘beaten Bill Gates’ on a math aptitude test, turned down a blind date with Katie Couric, and says he’s ‘bigger than some porno stars.'”
And these people want to run the country?

Gay marriage judge

Cato Institute:  “Recommended by Ed Meese, appointed by Ronald Reagan, and opposed by Alan Cranston, Nancy Pelosi, Edward Kennedy, and the leading gay activist groups.”  Oh, and the judge in MA was appointed by Nixon.
Surprise!!!  Maybe it really IS a strict constructionist interpretation of the Constitution.
And, did you know there are definitions of the word tea bagger that I can’t even talk about on the radio??  Who knew?
»  Substance:WordPress   »  Style:Ahren Ahimsa