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« August 2011 | Main | October 2011 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » September 2011

By Bruce Fealk on September 25, 2011

From 1949 until 1987, the Fairness Doctrine required broadcasters to operate in the public interest and provide equal time to opposing points of view.

The 2007 report The Structural Imbalance of Political Talk Radio found that 91% of talk radio was conservative and only 9% liberal. According to the report, every weekday there are 2,570 and 15 minutes of conservative talk radio broadcast and only 254 hours of progressive talk radio. That is hardly fair and balanced.

Sue Wilson, a former broadcaster herself, is taking on the issue head on. In 2009 she produced and stars in the movie, Broadcast Blues. Recently Wilson set out on a media tour for the film hoping to inform the public about what they can do to take back the public airwaves from the conservative talkers.

Why is this topic important to the country? According to Wilson, there is a direct correlation between the predominance of right-wing talk radio and voting patterns. “Only about five percent of the country gets to hear any progressive thought on the radio. We are seeing there’s been a shift in the voting patterns. Why do you think Scott Walker and the Tea Party and all these people are thriving, because there’s a drumbeat of propaganda? People are no longer able to differentiate between fact and fiction,” Wilson said.

Read more from this post here ...

By Peter Herbert on September 25, 2011

Wednesday was an informative day for observers of the death penalty in America. Georgia executed Troy Davis and Texas executed Lawrence Russell Brewer. Based on the crimes for which they were convicted, anyone would have guessed that Brewer’s execution would be the big national story. His crime was one of the biggest news stories of 1998. He and two other white supremacists chained a handicapped African America, James Byrd, to the back of their pickup truck and dragged him to death near Jasper, TX., for no reason except that Byrd was an African American who was easy to victimize. That is the only reason that I, and many others, have ever heard of Jasper, TX, and it ruined the name Jasper for me (sorry Angelo!). That crime more than any other, even more than the Matthew Shepard case, launched the movement for special hate crime legislation in America.

Despite the high profile of Brewer’s crime, it was Davis’s execution that captured all of the media attention Wednesday. Davis’s alleged crime was heinous, the murder of an off-duty police officer, but it was never national news, like Brewers’. What made Davis’s execution so much more newsworthy than Brewer’s was that there were doubts about Davis’s guilt – serious doubts! Over a million people, including leading liberals and conservatives, signed petitions calling for a stay of execution and a re-examination of his case. An interesting sub-plot to these cases was that the family of the victim in the Davis case, where there was so much doubt about his guilt, was pro-capital punishment and claimed that they needed Davis’s death to get on with their lives. The family of James Byrd, on the other hand, was opposed to capital punishment and tried to save the life of Brewer, his murderer, even though there was no doubt about Brewer’s guilt.

Read more from this post here ...

By Angelo Lopez on September 23, 2011

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By Jean Binder on September 18, 2011

I'd heard of those red states where they actually worry that people will vote rather than trying to get people TO vote, but somehow hadn't realized KS was one of them.

My grandson will have to produce a birth certidicate to register to vote when he turns 18. His mom is not into details so we didn't have one for him and got him one awhile back, but what if he was on his own? Would he have the $15 to get a birth certificate? Would he consider voting important enough to pay money for the right?

That is what this amounts to. There are very few times in life where one is required to produce a birth certificate. It confounds me to think why voting should be one of least if there is a cost involved. Whatever happened to the federal laws that prohibit a poll tax or are states usurping precedence over federal law once again?

By Angelo Lopez on September 15, 2011

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By Angelo Lopez on September 12, 2011

This morning I heard a good sermon on the 9/11 attacks at my church. My pastor talked about the effect it had on the people in our parish, and to our nation. Last week they had passed out red stars with the names of the people who had died in that terrorist attack. For a week the parishioners were to do one random act of kindness in commemoration to the person who was named in the red star.

I remember the attacks on the twin towers and the Pentagon very well. I was at work at the time, and I remember how stunned my coworkers and I were at the news. One of my coworker was vacationing in New York City, and she was at the Statue of Liberty and saw one of the planes hit a tower.

During that time, I remember most vividly how we all mourned the victims and their families. In Washington D.C. Democrats and Republicans united in support of President Bush, who went to New York to give consolation to families and to commend the firefighters and policement who risked their lives to go in the Towers to try to rescue people.

In the ten years that have followed, a lot has changed in this nation. We've gotten into two wars, the political parties have gotten more polarized, we've struggled with balancing civil liberties with the security needs of the state. Right now we're mired in a world wide recession, the worst we've seen since the Depression. It's a scary world that we're facing right now.

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By Ken Poland on September 8, 2011

I liked most of President Obama's speech. I do not agree with him on the FICA payroll deduction. I refuse to call it a 'tax'. It is an investment with matching funds from the employer. If you elect to set aside part of your paycheck for Savings Bonds, Company Stock, etc., they call it investments and many employers will match those investments.

Those opposing the Social Security system have been recommending stock 'investments' in place of FICA. If we can't trust our investment in the hands of our government, how can we trust other investments that require our National economy to stay strong.

As regards the rest of his program, it all sounded good. If he can get even 50% of it passed by congress and implemented, our economy should begin to strengthen.

By Diane Wahto on September 4, 2011

“The second civil war that had started tugging at the seams of America about a hundred years after the first one wasn’t a war between the states, or about anything as concrete as the emancipation of slaves. It was a much more subtle struggle between different perceptions and ideologies, different states of mind. The core issues were intensely private, personal, painful, and emotional, and spoke to very different views of the American future, as the conflict gradually moved away from the fringes and into the mainstream.”

Wichita, Kansas - To the citizens of Wichita, Kansas, the war over abortion is old news. They have lived with ongoing street protests for years, starting in earnest with the Operation Rescue takeover that in 1991 cost tax payers upwards of $600,000. They have lived with trials in their courtrooms, “Truth” trucks in their neighborhoods, threats, clinic vandalism, including a bombing, shootings, and finally, the murder of Dr. George Tiller, the doctor who symbolized more than any other person, the great divide over abortion in America.

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By Randy Leer on September 4, 2011

To those who hate America, I would like to appeal to you to no longer kill people in your quest to see America fall. It is ultimately against everyone’s religion or secular ethics. Furthermore, it is not necessary. You see America is destroying itself, and I’ll explain to you how.

It is now ten years since the attacks of September 11, 2001. On that day, 19 extremists wielding nothing more than box cutters were able to take over four planes and crash them in to the World Trade Center and Pentagon. The fourth plane crashed in a field after the passengers rose up against the extremists on-board. Nearly 3,000 people were killed on that day and there have been many others who have died or are dying from health problems arising from that day. This was a terrible and heinous act, and one that does not need to be matched.

On that day the fabric of what makes America was torn, but not destroyed. On that day we needed to make choices, all of us, as a nation. Those choices would decide whether we mended that tear. Since that day America has acted against its own wellbeing with fear and vengeance directed at you, those who hate America. With all the tragedy that was caused on September 11, 2001, America has done far more harm to itself. Many of the tragedies committed by America on itself are, perhaps, subtle and not easily measured. Many more of the tragedies are easily measured. Worst of all are the actions of a few that were done in the name of us all, despite our descent. So we must be adorned with the same filth as those who committed those wrongs, so I say “we,” which is technically inaccurate but accurate in the eyes of the world.

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By Angelo Lopez on September 2, 2011

For the past few decades, Conservatives and members of the Right have been accusing the Left or anyone who criticizes Capitalism and the free market system of being Marxists or Socialists. An example of this is the past three years, with Tea Party members labeling President Obama and his policies as being Marxist. It seems that many in the Right assume that the only critiques of Capitalism have come from Karl Marx. This is a fallacy, as many other individuals and groups have been critical of the Capitalist system. Here are a few of the critiques of the Capitalist system that I found. If you know more, please share with us what you know.

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