June 1, 2012

Posted by orrinj at 7:08 PM


via Ed Driscoll
Posted by orrinj at 6:23 PM


Jeb Bush, Grilled on Capitol Hill, Differs from Party on No-Tax Pledge (Shushannah Walshe, 6/01/12, ABC News)

Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen, the ranking Democrat on the committee, asked Bush if he agreed with Norquist's pledge and he answered, "No."

"I ran for office three times," Bush said. "The pledge was presented to me three times. I never signed the pledge. I cut taxes every year I was governor. I don't believe you outsource your principles and convictions to people. I respect Grover's political involvement. He has it every right to do it, but I never signed any pledge."

Posted by orrinj at 5:45 AM


Africa: A Tale of Two Presidents (National Black Chamber of Commerce)

Here is a review of President Bush's involvement in Africa by the Africa Growth Initiative:

"Bush's most important initiatives focused on alleviating major heath challenges facing the African people. In 2003, President Bush launched the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), which was then the largest single effort by any nation targeting a specific disease. The program sought to establish and scale up HIV/AIDS prevention, care and treatment programs. According to the PEPFAR program website, "during its first phase, PEPFAR supported the provision of treatment to more than two million people, care to more than 10 million people, including more than four million orphans and vulnerable children, and prevention of mother-to-child treatment services." Under President Bush, this program was criticized for its emphasis on abstinence based prevention, but on the whole this initiative was an unprecedented attack against the AIDS pandemic. 

Bush then targeted another deadly disease with the launch of the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) in 2005. The PMI had the initial goal of reducing malaria-related deaths by 50 percent in 15 focus countries. Malaria places a huge burden on Africans--causing millions of adult deaths every year and significant reductions in productivity. Results on the PMI website show that the program has major effect in reducing prevalence of malaria, child mortality and related deaths. 

The Bush administration's African foreign policy did not stop with health initiatives. Bush led the push for the G-8 nations to demand the multi-lateral debt relief initiative (MDRI), which encouraged the IMF, World Bank and the U.S. to reduce the debt burden of highly indebted poor countries. According to the African Development Bank, as of 2009 the MDRI relieved debt for 21 African countries. In 2004, Bush also successfully passed reforms that converted poor country debt into grants. Additionally, Bush tackled security issues. The president was one of the first world leaders to label the conflict in South Sudan genocide. Although, Bush received criticism for not recognizing the indictment of Omar al-Bashir by the International Criminal Court, he did put in place sanctions on oil coming from the Republic of Sudan in order to pressure a peace deal. These sanctions currently remain in place. Bush was also determined to create an Africa-based central command for U.S. forces. However, he did not win the support of African leaders to base the command, now called Africom, on the continent, with the base now resting in Germany. Africom, however, is now an implementing partner for the Department of Defense and PEPFAR, supporting training and testing throughout Africa. 
Enhanced by Zemanta

Posted by orrinj at 5:41 AM


Scott Walker's Last Stand? Democrats Lose Momentum In Wisconsin: The left has seemed more comfortable being angry than channeling that emotion into influence (Sally Kohn, 6/01/12, Daily Beast)

When Scott Walker, freshly elected as governor, dropped his bombshell proposal to revoke the collective bargaining rights of Wisconsin's public employees, protest erupted. Kim Cosier was right in the middle of it all. "It was exhilarating," says the University of Wisconsin assistant professor of arts education. "We were in the center of the Capitol when the firefighters marched in. I felt more American than I've ever felt, standing there, singing the national anthem, like we were finally participating in our own government."

But just days before Tuesday's vote, when Wisconsinites will have their chance to boot Walker for good, Cosier is in her office grading papers and preparing for classes.  Is she simply too busy now?

"I was busy then, too," she says, "but I found a way to be involved."

Derangement fades away.

Posted by orrinj at 5:38 AM