In today's On the News segment: Another violent police crackdown may be looming in Oakland, Rick Perry's hope of winning the presidency was dashed in last night’s CNBC Republican debate, BP is washing its hands clean in the Gulf, and more.
Thom Hartmann here – on the news…
You need to know this. Another violent police crackdown may be looming in Oakland. As Oakland police continue to defy requests from the ACLU to release records on the amount of force they were allowed to use by law a few weeks ago when they critically injured a two-time Iraq War veteran – it looks like another police raid could be imminent. Yesterday – members of the city council – joined by the local chamber of commerce – held a press briefing – bashing the Occupy Oakland movement – and calling for it to be broken up immediately. And according to a police source, “Oakland police have canceled all training exercises for next week, which is a 'pretty good indication' that the cops are making plans once again to clear out the Occupy camp outside City Hall.” Despite remaining peaceful – the American patriots who are exercising their first amendment rights could be put under siege again by a militarized police force – with no clue on what is lawful police action. Thomas Jefferson is rolling in his grave.
It’s the end of Rick Perry. If there was any hope that Rick Perry might be able to revive his spiraling Presidential campaign – that hope was dashed in last night’s CNBC Republican debate. Referring to the three agencies he’d eliminate as President – Perry named the Commerce department, the Education department, and then he went blank – unable to think of the third agency he’d do away with – creating a cringe-inducing minute of “ummm…’s” and awkward exchanges with the other candidates before Perry finally admitted, “I can’t…sorry. Oops.” Fifteen minutes later –Rick Perry said it was the Department of Energy he had forgotten to say. The mental breakdown overshadowed what would have been yet another show-stealing gaffe by Herman Cain last night – when – just as he is trying to battle allegations of sexual harassment – Cain made a disparaging remark against one of the most powerful women to hold elected office in America – former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi – calling her “Princess Nancy.” Cain later admitted it was, “a statement [he] probably shouldn’t have made.” Then again – Herman Cain has raised more than 2 million bucks since the sexual harassment allegations broke against him – and he’s maintained his position in the polls – so it seems like Cain believes nothing will slow down the man who’s pretending to run for President – but really just running to collect higher speaking fees and sell books. The Republican race to the bottom continues.
In the best of the rest of the news…
Want more evidence conservatives are TRYING to crash the economy – consider this. The Republican-controlled House of Representative will once again vote on – and likely pass – a so-called “balanced budget amendment” in the next week. The BBA as they call it – will immediately cut trillions of dollars out of the budget – and then make it nearly impossible to ever raise taxes again. And – it will crash our economy. According to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities – the Republican BBA would, “throw about 15 million more people out of work, double the unemployment rate from 9 percent to approximately 18 percent, and cause the economy to shrink by about 17 percent instead of growing by an expected 2 percent.” We can add those horrific economic numbers to the 370,000 jobs that have already been lost this year thanks to Republican budget cuts. And as we saw in last night’s debate – with the global economy headed into full meltdown mode – not one candidate said they’d lift a finger to stop it – aside from Herman Cain who thinks his 9-9-9 plan can stop anything. Luckily- as Tuesday’s election showed – the American people are waking up to just how bad the conservative agenda is for the nation.
BP is washing its hands clean in the Gulf. With reports that 90% of the oil on the Gulf Coast has been cleaned up following last year’s deadly BP oil spill – the government is letting BP end its cleanup efforts. But according to Gulf Coast residents – who on a daily basis still see tar balls wash ashore – the coast will never be the same. More than a year after 11 men died on a BP oil rig, triggering the worst ecological disaster in our nation’s history – it’s back to business as usual for BP – making money and avoiding paying US taxes.
There’s more freak weather in the world. Yesterday – a massive polar hurricane slammed into Alaska – with winds above 80mph and a storm surge above 7-feet. It’s the most powerful storm to hit Alaska’s west coast in more than 35 years. With once-in-a-lifetime freak weather now occurring once every decade – or less – we’re headed for a destructive future at the hands of a rebelling planet unless we do something to cut down on man-made global warming. Australia just passed a new carbon tax law – and it’s time to get big oil money out of politics here in the United States so that we can begin confronting the greatest challenge of our lifetimes – global warming.
Crazy Alert! Count the voters – or down for the count? An Ohio voter is recovering today – after a poll worker attacked him on Tuesday and nearly bit his nose off. After an argument erupted between the unnamed poll worker and 49-year-old Greg Flanagan over a campaign sign and whether or not it was too close to the polling place – the poll worker snapped and lunged at Flanagan – grabbing him around the neck – head-butting him between the eyes – and then trying to chomp off his nose. After the attack – the poll worker immediately jumped in his car and drove home – leaving Flanagan dizzied, bloodied, and shocked at what just happened. It’s unclear which Party the poll worker was siding with – but it could be yet another voter suppression tactic by the Republican Party. First – make it harder to register to vote – then make it impossible to early vote – then make it expensive to vote at all by requiring photo IDs – and finally – if someone does make it the voting station after all of that – simply bite their face off.
And that’s the way it is today – Thursday, November 10th, 2011. I’m Thom Hartmann – on the news.