Listeners exchange opinions and views about issues and events they believe warrant closer attention. Plus, it’s Pop Quiz! Test your advanced listening ability; your keen analytical skills; your knowledge of U.S. history, particularly of the modern civil-rights era and contemporary politics;your innate journalistic skills; and your ability to present your point of view masterfully.
Listeners exchange opinions and views about issues and events they believe warrant closer attention.
Haiti has been reeling from a cholera epidemic that, since 2010, has afflicted more than 600,000 people and claimed more than 8,000 lives. The improper disposal of human waste by U.N.-authorized personnel was cited as the original—and continuing—source of the problem, but the U.N. won’t accept responsibility, says Ezili Danto, a human rights attorney with the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network, which is seeking justice for Haitian families affected by the health disaster.
Also, Gerald Hebert, executive director of the Campaign Legal Center, explains key pieces of the Voting Rights Act, especially Section 5, which the U.S. Supreme Court reviews this week. The law was intended to safeguard the voting rights of minorities and the poor, but several state governments contend that it curtails their rights to make their own election laws.
Fresh from a one-week break—the extremely urgent business of the nation put on hold so they could relax and do nothing—Congress and President Obama return to “work” today, ready to resume their familiar partisan prating about who’s responsible for … doing nothing. But it’s Sequester Deadline Week, isn’t it? All hell is supposed to break loose if, by Friday, the well-rested parties haven’t hammered out a plan on how to pare down the budget by $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years (Leid Stories predicts: Both parties will agree to sequester the sequester until next year).
Plus, Ethan Pollack of the Economic Policy Institute with why the folks on Capitol Hill are missing a crucial point about the deficit.
A harrowing cab ride home one rainy night is recalled as a perfect metaphor for where we are as a nation: Relegated to the back seat as mere passengers, we’re in the hands of a government that can’t see where it’s going but won’t take directions. In the real-life story, Utrice makes an awesome decision and gets home. Politically speaking, she asks, are we as a nation prepared to the same?
Leid Stories highlights three cautionary tales: Bulgarians show what government by the people for the people really means; sequestration may in fact have a huge unintended benefit; and, in Chicago, a Jackson family implosion.
Flooded with calls yesterday from listeners wanting to express their views on Christopher Dorner, Leid Stories continues the conversation today on how we interpret the actions of the ex-officer, who authored his own death wish in a 23-page "manifesto" and then declared war on the LAPD for wrongfully dismissing him from the department.
It’s Open Forum on Leid Stories. Listeners debate two issues.
Are Republicans on the side of right when they claim a “massive coverup” on Benghazi and therefore entitled to interrupt or obstruct the business of government in pursuit of mere allegations? Or, is their way of continuing the do-nothing strategy of Obama’s first term so he would have little to show as accomplishments for his two terms in office?
And, in terms of the law, how is Christopher Dorner to be classified, given his actions and his own justification for them in his “manifesto?” Was he mentally impaired by racism? Is racism a viable defense for murder? With his “declaration of war” as a former cop against the LAPD, was he an assassin, an enemy combatant, a megalomaniac who felt entitled to take summary action because things did not go his way?
Yes, it was dramatic, stalling the confirmation of Chuck Hagel as secretary of defense by precedent-setting filibuster. But Republicans got what they wanted, and the Democrats could do nothing about it. They regained lost clout, brought some errant members back to the fold, compelled compliance from the White House and, Leid Stories suggests, appear to be strengthening an argument for impeachment of the commander in chief over the Benghazi consulate attack.
Plus, Christopher Dorner: Racism and Rage.
Treasury nominee Jack Lew gets grilled on a $900,000 Citigroup bailout bonus and an offshore investment account. Defense nominee Chuck Hagel’s confirmation gets staled by a Republican filibuster. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta fires damning parting shots at Congress. Plus, more detailed analysis of President Obama’s State of the Union address.
It’s a Capitol show on Leid Stories – a different kind of love on Valentine’s Day!