United States News Digest
Mass Strike Hits Political Allies of Wall Street
May 9 (EIRNS)In Utah yesterday, 18-year incumbent U.S. Sen. Robert Bennett was ousted at the Republican caucus, finishing third, his Senate career ended. Bennett's defeat was set in motion with an unprecedented turnout for the preliminary caucuses at the end of March, when 75,000 participated, whereas the usual attendance had been under 10,000. Utah activists had forecast that Bennett would be defeated due to his vote for the TARP bailout and his continuing defense of Wall Street's deregulation and free-market globalization policies.
The two Republicans who will be on the ballot in the June 22 primary, made the continuing bailout of Wall Street their leading issue. They are backed by Tea Party activists. However, contrary to the claims of Dick Armey's Freedom Works, this was less a victory for his group, than a real grassroots rebellion, a continuing, and deepening, example of what LaRouche has characterized as the anti-Wall Street mass strike process.
Bennett had strong credentials as a "conservative," has had the full support of the Mormon Church, is the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committeebut supported the nationalization/bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which LaRouche called "tantamount to treason," and the TARP bailout. While addressing the convention in Salt Lake City yesterday, he was greeted, derisively, with chants of "TARP, TARP, TARP."
A contrasting marker of the same process, is seen in Arkansas Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln's steady advance to a 12% lead in polls for her May 18 primary. Lincoln also voted for TARP, and for the Obamacare bill, and was in serious electoral trouble when state Lt. Gov. Bill Halter filed to run against her, backed by MoveOn.org. But since Lincoln introduced a tough anti-Wall Street/derivatives bill six weeks ago, flanking Senate Banking Committee chairman Chris Dodd's weak and White House-inspired bill, she has moved steadily into a strong lead in the primary.
Virginia A.G. Subpoenas Papers of Climate Hoaxster
May 7 (EIRNS)Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has issued a Civil Investigative Demand (CID) to the Rector and Board of Visitors of the University of Virginia, commanding the University to turn over information and documentsprincipally e-mailsrelating to the "global warming" work of Michael Mann, for the period from 1999 to 2005 when Mann worked at the University.
Mann was a central figure in last year's Climategate scandal, wherein emails were published showing personnel associated with the British East Anglia University manipulated and faked data to "prove" global warming. Mann was already notorious as the author of the so-called "hockey stick" chart, which falsified (smoothed out) temperature records from 1500 A.D. to the 19th Century in order to falsely show a sharp rise in global temperatures in the 20th Century, supposedly due to industrialization.
Cuccinelli's office released to news media a terse explanatory statement on the CID for Mann's papers: "The revelations of Climate-gate indicate that some climate data may have been deliberately manipulated to arrive at pre-set conclusions. The use of manipulated data to apply for taxpayer-funded research grants in Virginia is potentially fraud."
The University of Virginia announced that it would comply with Cuccinelli's April 23 order. They must produce all emailed or written correspondence between or relating to Mann and 40 other "climate scientists"; documents relating to Mann's applications for five grants totalling $484,875 that he collected from the state of Virginia; and evidence of documents that may no longer exist, with proof of exactly how and why they disappeared.
If fraud is demonstrated, Virginia's Fraud Against Taxpayers Act mandates recovery of the grant money, legal fees, and triple damages.
As public support for the global warming hoax evaporates, Cuccinelli's action has drawn an anguished response from global warming promoters. The Washington Post devoted its May 7 lead editorial to an attack on the Virginia legal order.
Conyers and Other Reps Nail Obama Fiscal Commission
May 6 (EIRNS)Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and 15 other members of Congress issued a letter implicitly attacking President Obama's debt commission for its intention to destroy American living standards.
The April 28 letter to the leaders of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform calls for its work to be "transparent and inclusive." The letter asks the Commission to show how any proposed cuts, such as in Social Security, or how "investments, made or not made, in job creation, infrastructure, child development," and so forth, would affect different groups in the population.
The letter also asks that the Commission meetings be broadcast on CSpan, and that the Commission's findings be released before the November elections. Sensitive Commission meetings are now taking place in secretthe latest one on May 5and the Obama plan is to hold off the Commission's recommendations until after the elections, to prevent public reaction from having any effect.
E-Records Doled Out Amidst Wave of Hospital Shutdowns
May 4 (EIRNS)The wave of hospital "downscales" and closures continues in the United States, backed by the Obama Administration's policies, with recent shutdowns reported in New York City, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and in the central and western states, too. This reality was mocked, today, by the announcement of 15 new pilot-project grants for electronic records, at a press briefing by Vice President Joe Biden and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who released the names of recipients of a combined $220 million for e-records, from the Office of National Coordinator of Health IT. Of the 130 grant applications, the 15 winners include the Mayo Clinic, Geisinger Medical Center, and several others, considered the darlings of how to cut costs, for the Obamacare Nazi health "reform."
It's hard to apply for, or use, e-records, if your facility is going out of existence. Some salient cases follow:
New York: On April 30, the 160-year-old St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City shut down, after months of public protests and appeals to keep it open.
New Jersey: Bergen County officials are appealing the reopening of Pascack Valley Hospital, shut two years ago.
Pennsylvania: In the western part of the state, on Jan. 30, Braddock Hospital shut down. In March, Jeaneatte Hospital shut down.
Michigan: Statewide, of the 144 hospitals open, 83 of them58%no longer provide obstetrics services, one of the original purposes of the 1946 Hill-Burton Act. For example, the West Branch Regional Medical Center plans to close down its obstetrics unit as of July 1, or even earlier. They are contacting pregnant women, to advise them to find somewhere else to give birth. This hospital, started in 1929, improved under Hill-Burton, now is scaling back to suit the "market." Its 2011 budget is cutting $613,000 out of staff costs, and $588,000 out of other expenses.
Ohio: In metro Cleveland, a rally was held May 2, to support two physicians who were being dismissed from St. John Medical Center in Westlake, on grounds that they were not sufficiently "profit-driven" and were too "volume oriented"; in other words, they didn't cut costs and slight patients.