Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 30, 2008

· Snipes, the star of the “Blade” films and “White Men Can’t Jump,” is on trial with two tax protesters in one of the biggest criminal cases in IRS history, and the agency hopes the media attention on the matter will dissuade others in the “tax avoidance” movement from trying to outwit the government. (click here)

· The Supreme Court Forgets the Little People. Rights and Liberties: The conservative-dominated court is totally out of touch with the rest of the country.

· Fox News Is in for a Very Rough 2008
By Eric Boehlert, Media Matters for America. MediaCulture: From losing the election ratings race to CNN, to watching its favored son Rudy Giuliani fizzle in the primaries, Fox News is in for a bad year.

· McCain now positioned to finish dramatic comeback. John McCain emerged from Florida Tuesday as the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, now poised to complete a remarkable comeback just months after being written off as politically dead.

· Immigration officials detaining, deporting American citizens

· Foreclosures rise across America

· West's shame: Poor in Haiti eat dirt to survive. Tiny elite controls wealth in impoverished nation; food prices up 40%

· Abramoff fallout has lobbying industry close to crisis

· Attorney General Michael Mukasey still won't say whether waterboarding is torture, a stance that is upsetting Senate Democrats who had threatened to derail his confirmation over the issue. Mukasey's refusal to define waterboarding as illegal could provoke hostile questioning during a scheduled appearance Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee. It was to be his first appearance there since being sworn in Nov. 9 and comes on the heels of a letter sent to the panel's chairman signaling he will not ever publicly conclude that waterboarding is illegal.

· The city that popularized the fast food drive-thru has a new innovation: 24-hour medical marijuana vending machines. Patients suffering from chronic pain, loss of appetite and other ailments that marijuana is said to alleviate can get their pot with a dose of convenience at the Herbal Nutrition Center, where a large machine will dole out the drug around the clock.

· Mets, Twins Agree on Johan Santana Trade


NEPA News:

· CV: The gruesome discovery of a severed head and dismembered body discarded in trash bags along two Northeastern Pennsylvania interstates launched a massive investigation that was still widening late Tuesday.

· TL: Remains found off highways. Eight bags with human parts, including a head, were found scattered on I-380 and I-80.

· Catholic teachers will hold rally for union rights

· Coroner will resign school director post. Luzerne County Coroner John Corcoran will resign as a Wilkes-Barre Area school director after the state Ethics Commission in Harrisburg ruled Tuesday he could not serve in both capacities.

· Wilkes-Barre/Scranton unemployment rate rises to 5.3 percent. In what could be the early rumblings of an anticipated recession, December seasonally-adjusted unemployment in the region increased seven-tenths of a percentage point to 5.3 percent.


Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

Democracy NOW! gives in-depth coverage on THREE of Bush's SOTU (Shit Of The Union) speech: Working Poor, Surge/Iran, & granting immunity to the telecom industry for spying on us:

1. Working Poor

Kathleen Newman & Barbara Ehrenreich: Bush Has Ignored the Working Poor and Failed to Address Growing Economic Inequality

During last night’s State of the Union, President Bush pushed for Congress to approve a $150 billion economic stimulus. Newman and Ehrenreich examine how Bush’s plan fails to help most homeowners facing foreclosures and fails to expand benefits for the poor such as unemployment insurance or food stamp allotment.

DN! transcript or DN! video

2. Surge/Iran

Bush Touts Outcome of Iraq Troop “Surge,” Repeats Threats Against Iran

In his final state of the union, President Bush once again defended the Iraq invasion and claimed the so-called troop surge a success. Bush also repeated his threatening rhetoric against Iran. We speak with unembedded journalist Dahr Jamail and Iraqi blogger Raed Jarrar.

DN! transcript or DN! video

3. granting immunity to the telecom industry for spying on us:

Bush Urges Congress to Grant Immunity to Major Telecom Corporations & Permanently OK Warrantless Domestic Surveillance

As the Senate continues to debate the domestic spy legislation, we speak to Glenn Greenwald, author of A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency.

DN! transcript or DN! video
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