Thomas P. Healy
Journalist and political analyst William Rivers Pitt is the best-selling author of War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know, The Greatest Sedition Is Silence: Four Years in America, and Our Flag, Too: The Paradox of Patriotism. He is managing editor and senior writer for the online news service truthout.org. He spoke with Thomas P. Healy from his home in Cambridge, Mass.
As expected, the U.S. Army has submitted a request to amend its license for depleted uranium (DU) at the Jefferson Proving Ground in southeastern Indiana.
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) published a Notice of Consideration of Amendment Request for the Jefferson Proving Ground Site and Opportunity for a Hearing in the Oct. 28 Federal Register.
"There is much talk at the present time of standing by the president. I am willing to stand by the president if he stands for the things I want, but when I look at the gang that stands behind the president, I know it isn't my crowd." - Eugene V. Debs, March 1918
Terre Haute native Eugene Victor Debs wouldn't stand by a government that hurt its own people. Instead, he helped found the Industrial Workers of the World, headed the presidential ticket of the Socialist Party of America five times, and spoke out against war, which led to his imprisonment for sedition in 1918.
Academy Award-winning filmmaker and best-selling author Michael Moore brought his populist road show to Butler University's Clowes Memorial Hall in Indianapolis Oct. 13 as part of the school's Visiting Writers Series. Before addressing a full house of more than 2,000 fans, Moore spoke with local journalists.
Depleted Uranium (DU) weapons are one of the most controversial components of the United States' military arsenal. But discussion of the use of such weapons -- much less of their environmental and health impacts -- is rarely part of public discourse.
In addition to courageous public figures such as anti-nuclear activist Dr. Helen Caldicott and journalist Dan Fahey, who endeavor to break the silence, Doug Rokke is one of the nation's most outspoken critics of DU. Rokke will speak at the Monroe County Public Library on Thursday, Oct. 2, as part of a panel discussion on "The Scourge of Depleted Uranium Weapons."
Since 1984, environmental attorney Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has brought hundreds of lawsuits against polluters in the Hudson River Valley on behalf of the Waterkeepers Alliance. As a result, the once polluted Hudson has become a remarkable story of successful environmental remediation. Kennedy spoke with Thomas P. Healy from Cape Cod.
HEALY: What's the key to Riverkeepers' success?
KENNEDY: What the Riverkeepers do primarily is to enforce the law. In each of the federal statutes, Congress inserted a provision that says that when the state and federal agencies fail to enforce the laws, any citizen can step into the shoes of the U.S. Attorney and prosecute a federal lawbreaker.
Author, educator and civil rights activist Howard Zinn is perhaps best known for his book A People's History of the United States, which remains a bestseller more than 20 years after its release. A leading figure in the Vietnam War protest movement, Zinn toured campuses around the country lecturing at teach-ins -- a practice he has continued since his retirement from Boston University in 1988.
Now 80, ill health has led him to cancel speaking engagements this fall, including one scheduled for October at Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind. In honor of Zinn's service to the Peace Movement, The Bloomington Alternative offers excerpts from a July interview with Zinn conducted by Thomas P. Healy.
President George W. Bush is scheduled to attend a fundraiser in Indianapolis on Friday, Sept. 5, and will reportedly speak about the national economy. Given the dismal state of fiscal affairs, his past assertions on the subject deserve more scrutiny than they received during his last visit.
Bush touted his "jobs and economic growth" package at the Indiana State Fairgrounds on May 15, but it turned out to be a tax cut for the wealthiest Americans and a benefits cut for military veterans, among others. Alas, mainstream media didn't "run the numbers" to analyze the potential effects of Bush's proposals, choosing instead to focus on the fact that the President's handlers made men on stage remove their ties. (For more information on Bush's May visit, see Baloney and Crumbs.)
Arriving at the front door of the Marriott with highly visible credentials, I got stuck behind a woman in a wheelchair whose access to the automatic doors was being blocked by a large Indiana State Police trooper. "I'm sorry ma'am, we're in lockdown," he said.
"I'm a guest in this hotel," she said evenly, and held up her room key. "I'm sorry," he replied and stood firm. Behind him the doors were being pulled shut and a plainclothes security man was waiving his hand in front of the door sensor. It didn't open. Lots of serious-looking men in suits were speaking into their wrists. The woman finally got the attention of the concierge and she was permitted to enter.
Reeling from the combined effects of a dismal U.S. economy and a costly war in Iraq, increased concerns about homeland security and energy transmission networks, rising healthcare costs and lowered revenues, 32 governors of the American states, commonwealths and territories converged on Indianapolis Aug. 16 for the 95th annual meeting of the National Governors Association (NGA).
Indiana Governor Frank O'Bannon welcomed his colleagues at the official opening ceremony on the grounds of White River State Park. "This is a historic day for our capital city and for the entire state of Indiana," he said. The event marks the first time in the history of the association that the annual meeting has been held in Indianapolis.