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Fueling the Flames
Labor and greens must join forces to stop Bush’s assault on the planet.
More African-Americans are running for governor than ever before.
Rigged elections are widespread throughout Africa, and not just in Zimbabwe.
A New Detente?
The Bush administration cozies up to China.


Disinformation follies.
Marriage proposal.


No evidence, but a Missouri inmate is facing execution.
Britain passes measures to elect more women.
Seeds of Destruction
Genetic contamination raises stakes on GMOs.
Bad Math
Pennsylvania debates are calculated to exclude Greens.
HMOs aim to stop even modest reform in its tracks.


BOOKS: Israel, the occupation and "apartheid."
Disasters in Waiting
BOOKS: Ahmed Rashid on more impending Jihad.
Play It Again, Sam
MUSIC: How multiple reissues keep record labels flush.
FILM: The moral dilemmas of Storytelling.
An interview with ®™mark's Frank Guerrero.

March 1, 2002
Any Volunteers? 4.3

The University of Tennessee’s Daily Beacon reports that the Kappa Alpha fraternity on campus is in danger of losing its charter and being thrown out of its house. But it wasn’t the gambling and holding cock fights in the house basement, or even the weekly stripper they hired.

What sunk them was the frat’s boxing tournament featuring Knoxville winos. The frat boys would recruit homeless men, “liquor them up,” give them boxing gloves, “and let them go to town.” Chapter President Patrick Diener added that these events were tolerated in the past, but Kappa Alpha’s new national officers forbade them.

Hidden Meanings 6.6

In television and radio ads currently running in five Midwestern states, President Bush appears to say: “There’s something more important than politics, and that’s to do our jobs.” This line is delivered after the Democratic senator of each state is accused of being “partisan” in our time of national emergency.

The Bush administration, great believers in the hidden messages embedded in media emissions, may have been secretly communicating with its own terrorist operative. Ann Coulter, the irrepressible cavewoman of pundit TV, shortly thereafter exhorted the faithful at a conservative political convention in Northern Virginia: “We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed, too. Otherwise they will turn out to be outright traitors.”.

Power from on High 5.6

What would Jesus deregulate? The electric utilities, possibly, but for a fee. Or so suggested Ralph Reed, erstwhile boy hero of Christian Coalition politicking, in a memo to the Enron Corporation leaked to the Washington Post.

Reed and his firm, Century Strategies, had worked for Enron in 1997 lobbying for deregulation legislation in Pennsylvania. In October 2000, Reed wrote to Enron proposing a $380,000 campaign that would enlist “faith-based activists,” conservative talk-show hosts, and even mainstream op-ed pages to beat the drum for deregulation.

“In public policy, it matters less who has the best arguments and more who gets heard—and by whom,” Reed wrote in the memo. “Elected officials and regulators will be predisposed to favor greater market-oriented solutions if they hear from business, civic and religious leaders in their communities.”

Amen, brother. Here’s how much it’ll cost you:

  • Twenty “facilitating letters,” signed by a third party, to each of 17 members of the congressional commerce committees that handle deregulation: $170,000
  • Guests booked on radio talk shows: $30,000
  • Telemarketing campaign that patches pissed-off Christians through to congressional reps: $79,500.
  • Op-eds signed by “opinion leaders” in major newspapers, which will then be “blast-faxed” to elected officials: $25,000.

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