Counterpunch: Is anyone listening?

October 26, 2007

A Castro Behind Every Bush


People won’t get as many colds, is how White House spokesperson Dana Perino put it yesterday when asked about global warming and criticism that the Senate testimony of one of the nation’s top scientists, CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding, had been “eviscerated.”

While Perino was giving blondes a bad name, elsewhere President Bush was attacking Castro, in “what aides called a defining speech for his U.S. position on post-Fidel Castro Cuba”.

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Counterpunch: Disaster capitalism and the housing crash

October 25, 2007

The Way to Paradise?

In the meager section of this week’s Miami Herald real estate section, there is a multi-color, mini magazine pull-out called: Paradise Way.

It is “sponsored by “Homestead’s Premier Builders: Caribe Homes, Lennar Homes, Lowell Homes, and United Homes.” All are suffering through the worst crash in housing markets in a century-although you won’t read that comparison, yet, in the mainstream press. Lennar, one of the nation’s largest publicly-traded home builders, is based in Miami. The private owners of Caribe Homes are executive board members of the Latin Builders Association, the industry group that dominates South Florida through informally bundled campaign contributions.

Standing at the top of the Florida Keys, the city of Homestead is a mess of a small rural town converted by greed into yet another sprawl-ridden bonanza for production home builders now fallen on hard times. It is where the building boom came to a screeching halt in Miami Dade, Florida’s largest of most politically influential county.

As advertised in The Miami Herald, Paradise Way represents the aspects of disaster capitalism that can’t be papered over.

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Counterpunch: Weapons of mass financial destruction

October 17, 2007

The Credit Shock

The New York Times reports that Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson will speak tomorrow about the intervention of the US government in crumbling credit markets. According to the Times, Mr. Paulson will say, “This is not about finger-pointing, it is about putting an aggressive plan together and moving forward.”

What was the first plan? An ill-founded scheme to demonstrate how mercenaries supporting aspirants to the Junior Chamber of Commerce could secure a US beachhead in the Middle East? Or, how historic low interest rates set by the Federal Reserve coupled with the crippling of regulatory authority for land use and natural resource decisions could trigger vast societal benefits through a boom in housing markets?

In any case, we are nearing the end of the Bush presidency whose legacy is as described in a 2002 conversation between a senior administration official, probably Karl Rove, with Times’ writer Ron Suskind: “We’re history’s actors and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

Please, God, that we should be left only with that.

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Counterpunch: The ghosts of the past

October 12, 2007

Gore Still Lost Florida

For his work to highlight global warming-ridiculed by George W. Bush leading up to the 2000 election-Al Gore just won the Nobel Peace Prize. Well done, citizen Gore.Candidate Gore still lost Florida.

It was an historic blunder of proportions one inadequately grasps for tools to measure. Still–notwithstanding the Nobel Peace Prize–it is important to remember history.

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Counterpunch: Corruption and the law of intended consequence

October 10, 2007

The Crimes of Florida’s Shadow Government

Buried on page 3 of today’s Miami Herald business section is: “Ex-PBS&J exec pleads guilty.” If ever Florida’s largest county floated a crime that demonstrates the law of intended consequences as relates to the unsustainable growth, it is the underlying scenario of the guilty plea by a former chairman of the powerful engineering firm, Richard Wickett, the second former chairman to plead guilty “to charges involving a long-running scheme to use campaign contributions to win government contracts.”

The US Department of Justice press release reads, “PBS&J is an employee-owned company based in Florida with approximately 3,900 employees throughout the United States.” PBS&J is a lot more than that.

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Counterpunch: If you don’t know St. Joe, you don’t know Florida

October 9, 2007

The Fall of Florida’s Largest Land Developer

St. Joe Corporation is the state’s largest landowner, and until today one of the state’s most ambitious developer.

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Counterpunch: Privatization, outsourcing and profits

October 2, 2007

Ripping Off Miami’s Poor

The outstanding investigative series by The Miami Herald discloses flagrant and rampant abuse of funding meant to benefit the poor–primarily African Americans–through the Miami-Dade Empowerment Trust, a nonprofit founded to help create jobs in Miami-Dade County’s poorest neighborhoods.

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