Florida's 'Disappeared Voters': Disfranchised by the GOP

For The Nation
In Latin America they might have called them votantes desaparecidos, “disappeared voters.” On November 7 tens of thousands of eligible Florida voters were wrongly prevented from casting their ballots–some purged from the voter registries and others blocked from registering in the first instance. Nearly all were Democrats, nearly half of them African-American. The systematic program that disfranchised these legal voters, directed by the offices of Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Secretary of State Katherine Harris, was so quiet, subtle and intricate that if not for George W. Bush’s 537-vote eyelash margin of victory, certified by Harris, the chance of the purge’s discovery would have been vanishingly small.

Scrub Helps Shrub

The company that the Florida secretary of state contracted with in 1998 to help purge the state rolls of ineligible voters is well connected to GOP circles. The chairman of the board of Database Technologies, now the DBT Online unit of ChoicePoint Inc. of Atlanta, was former astronaut and prominent Republican Frank Borman.

A High Price to Pay For The Power and The Glory

The Firms That are Pulling The Plug on California Learnt Their Trade From Margaret Thatcher
The Observer
President George W. Bush has announced that on 7 February, come hell or high water, he will end Bill Clinton’s order directing emergency electricity supplies to California.
As the lights on the Golden Gate bridge blink off, the state’s politicians are in full panic that this spells bankruptcy for two giant regional electricity companies, Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric. Not me. I can’t think of anything which would more joyously combine historic justice and good public policy than their corporate death.

Dear Richard, Don't Say We Didn't Tell You

For Gtech, an In With The Bush Family is Worth More Than Anything Lottery Players Have in Their Hand
The Observer
Congratulations to George W Bush and to Camelot on their victories.
More than a year ago, we reported that the Government had decided to let Camelot retain control of the National Flutter in perpetuity. That was two weeks before the formal bidding process began. Despite our announcement, Richard Branson soldiered on, refusing, like the last dinosaur, to heed the voice whispering: ‘Excuse me, but you’re extinct.’

La Mejor Democracia Que Puede Comprar El Dinero

Vender en subasta la presidencia de los EEUU hubiera sido màs eficiente. Si a pesar de haber perdido el voto popular, George W Bush, gana la Casa Blanca, habrà navegado sobre una ola demoledora de $447 millones de dòlares, que vienen segùn mis propios càlculos- de las sofocantes fortunas de dinero que el mundo de las corporaciones invierte para financiar las campañas polìticas. “W” gastà un buen veinticinco por ciento màs de lo que ofreciò Al Gore.

A Blacklist Burning For Bush

Hey, Al, take a look at this. Every time I cut open another alligator, I find the bones of more Gore voters. This week, I was hacking my way through the Florida swampland known as the Office of Secretary of State Katherine Harris and found a couple thousand more names of voters electronically ‘disappeared’ from the vote rolls. About half of those named are African-Americans. They had the right to vote, but they never made it to the balloting booths.

Florida's flawed "voter-cleansing" program – Salon.com's politics story of the year

If Vice President Al Gore is wondering where his Florida votes went, rather than sift through a pile of chad, he might want to look at a “scrub list” of 173,000 names targeted to be knocked off the Florida voter registry by a division of the office of Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris. A close examination suggests thousands of voters may have lost their right to vote based on a flaw-ridden list that included purported “felons” provided by a private firm with tight Republican ties.

Why Would Ralph Lie To Me?

I have it on good authority that Ralph Nader has changed his name to Larry, glued on a false moustache and joined the French Foreign Legion… not out of fear that pissed-off African-American voters will find his skinny carcass and thump him for planting the Evil Shrub in the White House; Ralph just wants to get away from the absurd he-should-have-he-shouldn’t-have shouting match among Americas activists.

The lesser of two evils?

My wife would kill me if she knew what I was doing to that blonde, but I don’t see how I can vote for Hillary Rodham Clinton. My vote against her in the New York Senate race could put Republican bats in charge of Congress and the White House, where they are certain to suck the blood of the working class – by privatising social security.

Inside Corporate America

An internal Study Reveals The Price ‘Rescued’ Nations Pay: Dearer Essentials, Worse Poverty and Shorter Lives The Observer So call me a liar. I was standing in front of the New York Hilton Hotel when the limousine carrying International Monetary Fund director Horst Kohler zoomed… 

Blair's American Daze

A truly curious letter appeared in the New York Times two years ago headed, ‘It’s time to repay America’, by one Tony Blair. In it, he thanked Bill Clinton and the whole of the US for introducing him to the pleasures of governing the American Way. That, he wrote, meant ‘results, not theology… free from preconceptions and bureaucratic wrangling… Government should not hinder the logic of the market!’

Welcome To My Hall Of Infamy

At absolutely no one’s request, we hereby announce the winners of Inside corporate America’s first annual Golden Vulture Awards:
The Call-My-Lawyer Award to… Sony Corporation.
Only last month, Sony and other media giants won a court injunction in the US against Napster, the website that lets you record music CDs off the internet.

States Deregulate Energy at Their Peril – from The New York Times

While reporters ogled celebrities at Barbra Streisand’s bungalow during the Democratic Convention in Los Angeles, there was a real display of populism 100 miles to the south in San Diego. There politicians have enrolled two million citizens in a scary economic experiment. This year, San Diego became the first city in California to experience the end of state regulation of electricity prices.