Bear Left! logo: a road sign with a left arrow

Bear Left!

Where else would you get your leftist bearings every week?

Volume III, Number 16: 22 May 2003

This Week's Articles:

Another Republican Moral Crusade Rooted in Politics

Paul Corrigan

Is that Ken Starr playing governor of Massachusetts? No, it's Mitt Romney.

Pardon me for confusing the latest Republican moral crusader with the infamous Mr. Starr. Governor Romney is pursuing University of Massachusetts President Bill Bulger with the same zeal that Starr pursued United States President Bill Clinton. In both cases, a Republican has unsuccessfully tried to oust from office a highly competent public servant because the individual in question lacks, in the mindset of that Republican, the moral authority to hold public office. Behind the stated motives are the clear objectives to take down successful Democrats who have thwarted Republican political agendas. The zeal of the pursuits is surpassed only by the personal and political destruction left in their wakes. At least Mitt was elected to the position from which he conducts his witch-hunt.

Upper Class Welfare

Tim Francis-Wright

The rich are different than you and me: they get the government to do their bidding. The latest tax cut proposals in the United States House and Senate demonstrate just how different they are. In the face of rising unemployment, a stagnant economy, and fiscal crises in dozens of states, the Republican Party has devised tax cut plans that show its true colors. The centerpieces of its plans will do next to nothing to help the economy, but will amply reward the investor class, Americans who live off their investments, to the detriment of anyone who has to work for a living. Radical tax cuts on dividend income are well nigh useless for their stated purposes, boosting the economy or creating jobs, but they serve the real purposes of the Republican party very well.

[Click on a title to read a particular article.]

Last Week's Articles:

Guns Don't Equal Butter

Paul Corrigan

Americans are slowly coming to the realization that it was nonsense to believe that the United States invaded Iraq to destroy Weapons of Mass Destruction. Despite being lied to by a president who promised never to lie to the American people, Americans have been mollified by the euphoria of having our team win. The "Bush Administration Buccaneers" beat Iraq in a media event that put every Super Bowl to shame.

But, just like football fans do after Super Bowl Sunday, Americans will return to the reality of their daily lives. Unless the Bush administration's guns can deliver the butter, the fans will turn on George W. just like they turned on his father.

Bush Action Figures

Paul Corrigan

While sitting at my desk today, contemplating how one best complies with Loyalty Day, I had an epiphany. America needs George W. Bush Action Figures. I am publicly staking my claim to this idea, which should be rolled out in time for the anniversary of September 11 and for Christmas shopping.

Acta Santorum

Tim Francis-Wright

For a fleeting moment late last month, Rick Santorum, the junior senator from Pennsylvania, was Penn's political bad boy, whose intemperate remarks on homosexuality might have made him a Republican pariah. In an interview with the Associated Press, he denounced "homosexual acts" and condemned sodomy, along with polygamy and adultery, as "antithetical to a healthy, stable, traditional family."

Unlike Trent Lott, whose praise for the racist 1948 campaign of Strom Thurmond led to his political downfall, Santorum has retained his standing in the Senate and has not even apologized for the enormity of his remarks. Santorum has survived because he disparaged homosexuals, the last acceptable target for mainstream bigotry in America. But his religious rationale for his animus towards homosexuality reveals deeper conflicts.

[Click on a title to read a particular article.]

Older Articles:

Some two hundred articles from previous weeks are in our archives. If you're not careful, you might learn something.

Our mailing list

If you like, sign up for our mailing list to get an update in your mailbox when we update this site, generally once per week. It's guaranteed to be more fun than spam.

Copyright issues

All of our original material—almost everything on the website— is now subject to a license from Creative Commons. It lets anyone copy or distribute our work for noncommercial purposes, with certain restrictions. In other words, copy but don't steal. Click on the Creative Commons logo on our of our pages for more information, including other types of licenses that are available.

Links of the Week

  • Dear Dr. Dollar: A reader wonders why the politics of deficits seems topsy-turvy (Ellen Frank, Dollars and Sense).
  • McCarthy Hearings 1953-54: Better late than never, we have five volumes of transcripts of McCarthy hearings (Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs).
  • Iraqi Nuclear Site is Found Looted: American troops have no idea whether high-level Iraqi nuclear waste is missing (Barton Gellman, Washington Post).
  • Home Run to Havana: Will the invasion trifecta for Bush be Afghanistan, Iraq, and Cuba (Simon Tisdall, The Guardian)?
  • How Not to Run a Country: Afghanistan is a mess, with unaccountable leaders governing only a fraction of the country (Paul Knox, The Globe and Mail).
  • The US Was Wrong to Go In—But Now It Must Not Leave: A quick withdrawal of American troops would be horrible for Iraq (Hugo Young, The Guardian).
  • Bursting Bubbles: The end of the dollar and housing bubbles will dramatically damage the American economy (Dean Baker, In These Times).
  • Civil Defense: You're On Your Own—Again: Civil defense is just as ineffective and silly as it was fifty years ago (Peter Amacker, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists).
  • Dividend Voodoo: Big tax cuts for the rich are both unfair and unwise; he should know (Warren Buffett, Washington Post).
  • An Interesting Day: Where was George Bush on 11 September 2001, and exactly what was he doing (Center for Cooperative Research)?

Links of Previous Weeks are in our voluminous archives.

Check out our Link Library for news, opinion, and just plain interesting stuff!

Fact of the Week

The Central Intelligence Agenecy mistakenly declassified a vital document from 1974 twice, once in 1997 and once in 1999. The reviewer in 1997 declassified the item, but the 1999 reviewer deemed most of the item to be too important to national security to divulge. What was this item? A report about possible sabotage of the "annual courier flight of the Government of the North Pole." Yes, McLean, Virginia, there really is a Santa Claus.

National Security Archive, 21 May 2003.


Elsewhere on the site

Please check out:

  • ... our link library, with hundreds of links to worthy organizations, newspapers, weblogs, and other websites. You'll certainly find something new there.
  • ... our home page, with our most recent articles, current links of the week, and honor roll of progressive and leftist weblogs.