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Panel discussions from the Left Forum, April 18, 2009

10,000 March on Wall St., April 4, 2009

Global social justice movement resources
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Many BTL interviews are excerpted from Scott Harris' live, 2-hour program, Counterpoint. To hear more in-depth analysis you won't get in mainstream media, listen to Counterpoint LIVE Monday nights from 8 to 10 p.m. EST on WPKN Radio

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"Best of New Haven 2001"
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WPKN Radio, 89.5 FM

'A New Era of Responsibility'

"Push Obama to Follow Through on Peace Vows," by Amy Goodman, The Capital Times (Wisconsin), Jan. 22, 2009
"How to Push Obama," by John Nichols, The Nation, Jan. 12, 2009

"The Danger of Green Stimulus," Jesse Jenkins, Huffington Post, Jan. 5, 2009

"Who Will Seize the Moment?" Turning Crisis into Opportunity, by Ralph Nader, Counterpunch, Dec. 4, 2008

"Community Organizers Press Obama for Real Change," by, Dec. 3, 2008

Civil Liberties

"The effects of Obama's refusal to investigate Bush crimes," by Glen Greenwald,, Jan. 20, 2009

"Binding U.S. law requires prosecutions for those who authorize torture, " by Glenn Greenwald, Salon, Jan. 18, 2009

"Obama Has to Hold Bush Accountable for the Laws He Broke," by Elizabeth Holtzman, The Nation, Jan. 16, 2009

"Obama Must Restore the Constitution: Prosecuting Bush and Cheney," by Dave Lindoff,, Jan. 16-19, 2009

A BETTER WORLD IS POSSIBLE: Human Rights Solutions

"Single-Payer Health Care Would Stimulate Economy," by John Nichols, The Nation, Jan. 15, 2009

"Fulfilling the Promise of Human Rights: The Universal Declaration at 60," audio recordings from a Connecticut conference marking the 60th anniversary of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Conn., Dec. 6, 2008

A BETTER WORLD IS POSSIBLE: Converting Fossil Fuel/War Economy to Green, Renewable Energy/Peace Economy

"Green Jobs Should Top Our Economic Recovery List," by Juleyka Lantigua, Jan. 6, 2009

"Obama Must Get Afghanistan Right,"by Katrina Van Heuvel, The Nation, Jan. 9, 2009

"Nine Steps to Peace for Obama in the New Year," by Deepak Chopra, Alternet, Jan. 1, 2009

"Electric Cars Put Hawaii on The Road to Independence," by Times Online/UK, Dec. 4, 2008

"Weapons Come Second: Can Obama Take on the Pentagon?" by Frida Berrigan,, Nov. 25, 2008

The FY 2009 Pentagon Spending Request - Global Military Spending, by the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

Economic Crisis

"The Outcry Is Muted, But The Food Crisis Is Getting Worse," by Jayati Ghosh, The Guardian/UK, Jan. 9, 2009

"Ideas for Obama, "by Paul Krugman, by The New York Times, Jan. 12, 2009

"The Ponzi Scheme Presidency: Bush's Legacy of Destruction," by Tom Engelhardt,, January/February, 2009

"Fiscal Therapy," by David Cay Johnston, Mother Jones, January/February, 2009

"A Look At Wall Street's Shadow Market: How Some Arcane Wall Street Financial Instruments Magnified Economic Crisis," 60 Minutes, Oct. 5, 2008

"Swapping Secrecy for Transparency," by Christopher Cox, SEC Chairman, The New York Times Op-Ed, Oct. 19, 2008

"The Bet That Blew Up Wall Street: Steve Kroft On Credit Default Swaps And Their Central Role In The Unfolding Economic Crisis," 60 Minutes, Oct. 26, 2008

Broken Government

"Broken Government: By The Numbers," 40 ways in which the federal government failed to perform under the administration of George W. Bush, 2001-2008

Class Warfare

"How the Rich Are Different From You and Me,"Places that went for Obama are richer and smarter than places that went for McCain, by Bill Bishop and Robert Cushing, Slate, Dec. 11, 2008

"Questions About the $700 Billion Emergency Economic Stabilization Funds, " First Report of the Congressional Oversight Panel for Economic Stabilization, Dec. 10, 2008

War And Profiteering

"This Is Change? Twenty Hawks, Clintonites and Neocons to Watch for in Obama's White House," by Jeremy Scahill,Alternet, Nov. 20, 2008

"Don't Let Barack Obama Break Your Heart," Why Americans Shouldn't Go Home, by Tom Engelhardt, Nov. 12, 2008

"The Future of Iraq: The Spoils of War," Blood and oil: How the West will profit from Iraq's most precious commodity, by Danny Fortson, Andrew Murray-Watson and Tim Webb, The Independent/UK, Jan. 7, 2007

"Noam Chomsky on Middle East Conflict and U.S. War Plan Against Iraq," Between The Lines interview with Noam Chomsky, conducted by Scott Harris, for the Week Ending May 3, 2002

The Iraq Crisis, a Global Policy Forum, U.N. Security Council section on the 13 years of sanctions and other background of the war, the humanitarian situation, the importance of Iraq's huge oil resources, and disputes over a post-war government and reconstruction plan

"Pipeline Politics: Oil, The Taliban, and the Political Balance of Central Asia," World Press Review Special Report, Nov.-December 2001

Between The Lines

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Posted Dec. 23, 2009

Between The Lines
For The Week Ending Jan. 1, 2010


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This week we present Between The Lines' summary of under-reported news stories and:

Insurance Lobby Shaped Weakened
Senate Health Care Reform Bill

 RealAudio  MP3

Interview with Wendell Potter,
former health insurance executive,
conducted by Scott Harris


Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., is poised to pass healthcare reform legislation before Christmas Day, having overcome the threat of a Republican filibuster by mustering all 60 votes in the Democratic caucus. But the compromises made to achieve what some are calling a landmark accomplishment, were high. Many progressive activists and some legislators expressed disgust at the concessions made to win the support of conservative Democratic Sens. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Joe Lieberman, Independent of Connecticut.

Under pressure from party dissidents, the majority were forced to scrap original provisions such as a public, government-run health insurance option, expansion of Medicare to cover uninsured Americans ages 55 to 64, and removing anti-trust exemptions for the heath insurance industry. If as expected, the Senate passes their $871 billion healthcare bill, that legislation must then be reconciled with the measure passed by the House in November , which includes a public option, withdraws anti-trust protection and pays for the program by taxing the rich.

Between the Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Wendell Potter, the former head of communications with Cigna Insurance company, who now serves as a senior fellow on Health Care with the non-profit group Center for Media and Democracy. Applying his 20 years' experience in the health insurance industry, Potter assesses the winners and losers in the Senate health care battle and the value of health reform legislation shaped by corporate lobbyists that may be signed into law early in 2010.

See rush interview transcript.
Sign up for Between The Lines Q&A
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Contact the Center for Media and Democracy at (608) 260-9713 or read Potter's blog at

Related Links:

Failure of Copenhagen Climate Talks
Portends Grim Future

 RealAudio  MP3

Interview with writer and environmental activist Bill McKibben,
conducted by Melinda Tuhus


Most governments and environmental groups believe the two-week United Nations Copenhagen climate failed to accomplish what's necessary to turn back catastrophic climate change. Even U.S. President Barack Obama, in declaring his so-called, "breakthrough" on the last day of the conference, which reached an agreement for voluntary reductions among five key generators of greenhouse gasses, acknowledged that it's still not enough to avert disaster, but it's a beginning. Bill McKibben was in Copenhagen with the group he co-founded. The writer and environmental activist spurred a global movement culminating in demonstrations Oct. 24 in almost every country on the planet calling for a reduction in atmospheric carbon dioxide to 350 parts per million, from the current 387 -- the level climate scientists say is necessary to avert the consequences of unchecked global warming. Between The Lines' Melinda Tuhus spoke with McKibben about the role played at the conference by small nations most threatened by climate change as well as that of the U.S. and China, the two largest emitters of carbon dioxide, and of his waning hopes of implementing the urgent action necessary to save the planet.
See rush interview transcript.
Sign up for Between The Lines Q&A
interview transcripts.

For more information about the group's continuing efforts, visit their website at

Related links:

Millions of Recovered Bush Era Emails
Could Shed Light on Scandals

 RealAudio  MP3

Interview with Anne Weissman,
chief counsel with Citizens for Responsibility
and Ethics in Washington,
conducted by Scott Harris


In 2007, two public interest groups initiated a lawsuit challenging the failure of the Bush White House and the National Archives and Records Administration to take any action to recover millions of missing Bush White House emails generated between 2003 and 2005. Some of these emails had been sought by the Justice Department and Congressional Committees relating to their investigations of several administration scandals, including the White House outing of CIA Officer Valerie Plame Wilson and the suspected political motivation behind the mass firing of U.S. attorneys around the nation.

When President Obama was sworn into office in January of this year, the groups which initiated the lawsuit, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington and the National Security Archive, had hoped for cooperation from the new administration. Instead, White House officials adopted the same defiant position as their predecessors in the Bush administration. However, after negotiations between the groups and the Obama White House, a settlement of the lawsuit was announced on Dec. 14.

Under the terms of the settlement, the executive office of the president has restored a total of 94 days of missing emails, estimated to total 22 million, which will be sent to the National Archives and Records Administration for preservation and eventual access. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Anne Weissman, chief counsel with Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, who explains how her group settled the law suit and the possible role the recovered emails may play in prosecuting Bush administration misconduct.

Visit Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington's website at

Related Links:

This week's summary
of under-reported news

 RealAudio  MP3

Compiled by Bob Nixon

  • After a monthlong hunger strike, Western Sahara human rights activist Aminatou Haider has been allowed to return home to northern Africa. (" W. Sahara Activist Arrives Home After Hunger Strike, "Agence France Presse, Dec. 18, 2009; "Morocco Yields on Western Sahara Activist," Financial Times; Dec. 18, 2009; "Morocco Yields To Pressure, Activist Back Home," Reuters, Dec. 18, 2009.
  • Human rights activists have raised serious doubts about upcoming Sudanese elections and the peace process after a series of street protests in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan. ("Sudan Lays Groundwork For Elections, Peace,", Dec. 17, 2009; "Sudan: Preventing Implosion," International Crisis Group, press release, Dec. 17, 2009; "Sudan: Preventing implosion" overview, policy briefing #68,; The Enough Project: The Project to End Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity at
  • More than a year after the beginning of the financial meltdown, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has just begun its investigation into key players involved in collateralized debt obligations or CDOs, which were at the epicenter of the crisis. ("Kucinich panel to investigate Citigroup tax ruling,"Washington Post, Dec. 18, 2009; "SEC Just Now Seeking Key Information On Meltdown,", Dec. 16, 2009)

Executive producer: Scott Harris
Segment producers: Scott Harris, Melinda Tuhus
Senior news editor: Bob Nixon
Program narration: Denise Manzari
News reader: Liz Becker
Senior web editor/producer: Anna Manzo
Web producer: Jeffrey P. Yates
Web consultant: Gary Trujillo
Newswire editors: Hank Hoffman
Photo editor: Scott Harris
Outreach coordinator: Anna Manzo
Distribution: Anna Manzo and Jeffrey P. Yates
Theme music: Written by Richard Hill and Jody Gray, and performed by Mikata

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Last Week's Program

Between The Lines Week Ending 12/25/09

Between The Lines' Blog

"Reading Between The Lines"

U.S. Politics

"How Wall Street Bought Barney Frank," by Kevin Connor, AlterNet, Dec. 22, 2009

"Healthcare industry stocks explode as bill progresses," by Glenn Greenwald, Salon, Dec. 22, 2009

"Leadership, Obama Style, and the Looming Losses in 2010: Pretty Speeches, Compromised Values, and the Quest for the Lowest Common Denominator," by Drew Westen, Huffington Post, Dec. 20, 2009

"Obamacare and the Fašade of Regulation: How Health Reform was Killed by Triangulation," by James Ridgeway, Counterpunch, Dec. 18-20, 2009

"The underlying divisions in the healthcare debate," by Glenn Greenwald, Salon, Dec. 18, 2009

More newswire ...


"A Longer, Deeper Recession Looms," by Dave Lindorff, Counterpunch, Dec. 22, 2009

"Wall Street's fingerprints evident on financial reform bill," Christian Science Monitor, Dec. 22, 2009

"States' jobless funds are being drained in recession," Washington Post, Dec. 22, 2009

"Bernanke Tightens the Noose: Brace Yourself for a Hard Landing," by Mike Whitney, Counterpunch, Dec. 21, 2009

More newswire ...

Bush Accountability

"Report: Bush Admin Raised Terror Alert Based On Con Man's Al Jazeera 'Decoding' Scam," by Justin Elliott, Talking Points Memo, Dec. 21, 2009

"More Justice Department Chicanery in a State Secrets Case," by Scott Horton, Harper's, Dec. 17, 2009

More newswire ...

International Affairs

"U.S. aid to al-Qaida," by Glenn Greenwald, Salon, Dec. 22, 2009

"Top US officer: Force must be option for Iran," Associated Press, Dec. 21, 2009

"Cruise missile attacks in Yemen," by Glenn Greenwald, Salon, Dec. 21, 2009

"CIA working with Palestinian security agents," Guardian/UK, Dec. 17, 2009

More newswire ...

"Postwar" Occupation of Iraq, Afghanistan

"US forces mounted secret Pakistan raids in hunt for al-Qaida," by Guardian/UK, Dec. 21, 2009

"Why the Af/Pak War is Illegal," by Marjorie Cohn, Counterpunch, Dec. 21, 2009

"Turmoil in Pakistan threatens Obama's new Afghan strategy," McClatchy Newspapers, Dec. 20, 2009

"Channeling Sunni Rage Into Iraqi Political Clout," The New York Times, Dec. 19, 2009

"Stunning Statistics About the War Every American Should Know," by Jeremy Scahill, Rebel Reports, Dec. 17, 2009

More newswire ...

Civil Liberties/ Human Rights

"Probe Confirms CIA Operated Secret 'Black Site' Prisons in Lithuania," by Jason Leopold, TRuthout, Dec. 22, 2009

"Dred Scott Redux: Obama and the Supremes Stand Up for Slavery," by Chris Floyd, Empire Burlesque, Dec. 18, 2009

"America's Secret ICE Castles," by Jacqueline Stevens, The Nation, Dec. 16, 2009

More newswire ...

Environment and Sustainability

"Helen Caldicott Slams Environmental Groups on Climate Bill, Nuclear Concessions" by Art Levine, Truthout, Dec. 22, 2009

"Beyond ecological imperialism" by Jayati Ghosh, Guardian/UK, Dec. 21, 2009

"After the catastrophe in Copenhagen, it's up to us," by Johann Hari, Independent/UK, Dec. 21, 2009

"If you want to know who's to blame for Copenhagen, look to the US Senate," by George Monbiot, Guardian/UK, Dec. 21, 2009

More newswire ...

Media Issues

"Net Neutrality and the 21st Century First Amendment," by Marvin Ammori, Balkinization, Dec. 10, 2009

"Why Journalist Gary Webb Died," by Robert Parry, Consortium News, Dec. 9, 2009

More newswire ...


"Anti-War Activists Losing Patience with Obama," Star-Telegram (Fort Worth, TX), Dec. 19, 2009

More newswire ...

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