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Guest Blogger: David Sirota

March 29, 2005 - With Chris Kromm out on vacation this week, we're bringing in an all-star lineup of guest bloggers. Up today is David Sirota, a fellow at the Center for American Progress, regular guest on the Al Franken Show, and columnist for In These Times who is deeply interested in issues that affect "red staters" in the South and beyond.

Slow-Burning Disaster

March 28, 2005 - A few weeks ago came news that Duke Energy was considering the construction of the first new nuclear plant in two decades (since before the Chernobyl accident in the former Soviet Union), to be built in either South or North Carolina.

Double Standard

March 28, 2005 - According to the L.A. Times, in 1988 Tom DeLay's own father, comatose, brain-damaged, and kept alive by machines after a freak accident at home, was allowed to die by his family - without the interference of Congress or the President. Also, the DeLay family successfully sued the manufacturers of the "backyard tram" that had crashed, though the congressman would soon make a career of excoriating "frivolous, parasitic lawsuits" that "kill jobs":  

Welcome to Life in Texas City

March 25, 2005 - After yesterday's blast at a BP-Amoco oil refinery in Texas City that killed 15 and injured more than 100, many articles pointed out that the Gulf coast port was also the site of the infamous 1947 ship explosion that killed nearly 600. "Welcome to life in Texas City," one resident told the AP. "I was born here and pretty much, it happens from time to time."

It Cuts Both Ways

March 24, 2005 - Alabama district attorney and practicing Catholic Doug Valeska "has sent more people to Death Row than other DA in the state except those in more populous Jefferson and Montgomery counties." Alabama bishops have joined a national campaign to end the death penalty, and the DA's own priest has asked him not to seek execution in specific cases, but Valeska makes like Huck Finn:

The Other Shoe Will Drop

March 23, 2005 - The Schiavo case fits perfectly Thomas Frank's description of the right-wing bait-and-switch, wherein the social cons are whipped into a frenzy by some "cultural" crusade with little hope of succeeding, while politicians harness their energy, votes, and money to slash regulations, cut taxes, and make the world safer for corporations.