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October 26, 2006

The Era of What’s Next - New York Times

Re: The Era of What’s Next - New York Times:

Reflexive right-wing commentator David Brooks gets some it:

First, conservatives have exhausted their agenda. They have little new left to propose and have lost their edge on issues like fiscal discipline and foreign policy. Second, conservatives are beset by scandals, the kind of institutional decay that afflicts movements at the end of their political lives. Third, the Reagan coalition is splintering, with the factions going off in wildly different directions.

October 06, 2006

Saxton lied

[Submitted to the Oregonian 10/6/2006]

To the Editors -

Card-carrying Republican Ron Saxton lied about large numbers of illegal immigrants voting in Oregon elections, whereas the truth is that in reviewing 15 years of investigations, the Secretary of State found just two cases out of over 10 million votes.  If Saxton is willing to lie to get into office, what will he do to keep power if he gets in office?

Saxton’s strategy of doing anything to get in office is part of the corrupt national Republican Party machine, which is financing him, along with a few big-money special-interest donors giving $250,000 or more.  But Oregonians already know how deeply corrupt and inept Republicans are when in office -- from taking Abramoff's bribes, to covering for Foley, to Iraq and Katrina and to unreported beer & wine junkets to Hawaii.  Let’s not let this spread in Oregon.

Don’t let Saxton lie his way into office because he won’t be representing the good values and people of Oregon if he gets there.

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October 05, 2006

Re: Big Ideas and No Boundaries

[To Tom Freidman re: Re: Big Ideas and No Boundaries, published in the NYT on 10/5/2006; also posted as a comment on Huffington Post re: David Sirota's Another Open Letter to Thomas Friedman]

Tom, I think you set up an exagerrated and false dichotomy.  If you listen to the voices out there, I don’t think you hear protectionism.  You hear concern, certainly, but the view isn’t “shut our borders” it is “fair trade” vs “free” trade.  You like to pretend it is just Joe software engineer versus Prashant software engineer, but it goes much deeper.

Fair trade ideas are about, as you must know, not out-sourcing pollution with the jobs, not trying to compete in a rush to the bottom by competing against economies that don’t have worker protections to allow collective bargaining, to be treated fairly, to be actually paid for the work they do, etc.

By saying that anyone who thinks that there are real, serious issues with the current world trading system must be only the most extreme opposite is to miss the point and frankly, knowing how well informed you generally are, seems intellectually dishonest.

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