"Former British Hostage Likens 5-Year Solitary Confinement in Lebanon To Guantanamo Bay." One participant in the March 8 march on the White House by the U.K.-based Guantanamo Human Rights Commission had a curiously relevant resume. Democracy Now! (March 10) interviews Terry Waite, the British special envoy who was held hostage by Islamic militants from 1987 to 1991. Waite says the absence of due process for Guantanamo prisoners recalls his own captivity. "The state," he says, "seems to me to have adopted the tactics of the terrorists ..." (www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=04/03/10/1537255) Locally, the TV version of Democracy Now! screens 8-10 a.m. Monday through Friday on PCTV21. On radio, hear it on 88.3 WRCT from 8-9 a.m. Mondays through Friday, and 9-10 a.m. Mon., Tue., Thu. and Fri.
"Industry Consolidation, Uncompetitive Behavior Contributing to Rising Gas Prices." If crude oil prices are the same today as in November 2000, why are retail gas prices 17 percent higher? The next time the White House blames pump prices on environmental regs, consult watchdog Public Citizen (March 10), which reports that the real reason lies with the oligopoly (ExxonMobile, ChevronTexaco, et al.) that controls nearly two-thirds of the retail market. The mega-merged companies have been intentionally limiting refining capacity to boost prices. Failed oil man Bush looks on, proffering tax breaks out of sheer admiration. (www.citizen.org/hot_issues/issue.cfm?ID=763)
"Spy Unit Skirted CIA on Iraq." Man, the White House really must have wanted to believe that Iraq and Al Qaeda were pals. For instance, when senior administration officials were briefed by the Pentagon's controversial Policy Counter Terrorism Evaluation Group, nobody even told George Tenet, who as CIA director you'd think ought to have known. Maybe the White House just didn't like Tenet's take, which failed to support its claims of Iraq-Al Qaeda chumminess. The L.A. Times' Gregg Miller (March 10) reports on Tenet's appearance at a Senate hearing.
"Why Bush Supports Outsourcing." MoveOn.org is making noise lately, and not only about CBS's refusal to air its Super Bowl ad slamming Bush. MoveOn is also aggressively reporting on the White House, especially in its e-mail newsletter, The Daily Mislead. On March 10, the Mislead compared findings of a trade-association report on the companies that outsource the most jobs to Bush's campaign-finance records. No surprise: The President and the party who say outsourcing is cool beans rake it in from outsourcing champs including American Express, Dell Computer and General Electric. (www.misleader.org/daily_mislead/read.asp?fn=df03102004.html)