BILL MOYERS: So much has been happening in the world it's easy to miss some of the more telling stories. So we'll close tonight with some items from the news that we keep in an old fashioned clip file - right on top of our desk. Be forewarned: It's all on the record; we're not making any of this up.
BILL MOYERS: The new publication THE WEEK, one of my favorites, reports that:
Afghanistan's chief justice shut down television channels he deemed un-Islamic, and said he wanted to end the country's brief experiment with co-education as well.
BILL MOYERS: Here at home, this story appeared on the front page of THE NEW YORK TIMES.
The Bush administration plans to allow religious groups for the first time to use federal housing money to help build centers where religious worship is held.
BILL MOYERS: We spotted this story in THE DENVER POST.
The bodies of U.S. soldiers killed by chemical or biological weapons in Iraq may be bulldozed into mass graves and burned to save the lives of surviving troops.
BILL MOYERS: So is this headline from THE LOS ANGELES TIMES: "U.S. Weighs Tactical Nuclear Strike On Iraq."
BILL MOYERS: And just to make it official this one from THE WASHINGTON TIMES: "Bush Signs Paper Allowing Nuclear Response."
BILL MOYERS: And in case terrorists explode a dirty bomb here at home, "The FDA wants an anti-radiation drug." WIRED NEWS reports the government is looking for a way to treat radiation exposure.
BILL MOYERS: On the environmental front, the Knight Ridder newspapers reported that President Bush has made over 50 major changes in policy without attracting much attention by...
...Issuing Executive Orders that don't require Congressional approval, rewriting highly technical environmental regulations and muzzling dissent within the administration.
- "Assault Quietly, but effectively, the Bush administration is weakening laws that protect the environment," Seth Borenstein, February 2, 2003, Knight-Ridder Newspapers: THE MIAMI HERALD, MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, THE SUNDAY GAZETTE MAIL, THE STATE, DULUTH NEWS-TRIBUNE
- President Bush's Executive Orders
BILL MOYERS: From one of my favorite sources the ECOLOGIST MAGAZINE:
Chemical and biological weapons buried on abandoned and converted defense sites across the us have contaminated an area larger than Florida.
Meanwhile, according to THE LOS ANGELES TIMES civil and criminal penalties for breaking federal environmental laws have dropped significantly since President Bush took office.
BILL MOYERS: From THE NEW YORK TIMES:
- "Environmental Penalties Down Under Bush, Data Show," Elizabeth Shogren, THE LOS ANGELES TIMES, January 31, 2003
Representative John Dingell broke the story
- EPA Office of Administrative Law Judges
- "EPA enforcement figures show declines, advances," Associated Press, John Heilprin, January 31, 2003
The administration is moving to help industries keep using a pesticide that is to be banned under an international agreement to restore the earth's protective ozone layer.
BILL MOYERS: Among the pesticide users to be exempted...are golf course operators.
BILL MOYERS: On the economic front, THE NATIONAL JOURNAL tells of dozens of Fortune 500 executives prowling Capitol Hill urging support of the president's plan to cut their dividend taxes...while governors are pulling their hair out because ending the dividend tax would raise state budget deficits by another $4 to $5 billion dollars a year.
BILL MOYERS: Writing in THE WASHINGTON POST, columnist Robert Samuelson reminded his readers that the benefits of the tax cut would go quote "heavily to the rich." To the eight percent of the population that makes over one hundred thousand dollars a year.
BILL MOYERS: The dictionary defines populism as "a political philosophy directed to the needs of the common people and advocating a more equitable distribution of wealth and power."
BILL MOYERS: Nonetheless, Karl Rove, the president's political mastermind, called reporters together to announce that Mr. Bush is - a populist whose call for the elimination of taxes on stock dividends was aimed at "the little guy."
BILL MOYERS: Finally from THE NEW YORK TIMES:
One week after President Bush proposed billions in tax breaks for fretful stock owners, he revived a plan to wring an additional 10 hours of work each week from women with small children who are managing to hold a job under the federal welfare reform program.
BILL MOYERS: As I say, it's all on the record. We're not making it up. We've also posted there a short biography of the late Will Rogers, the shrewdest and funniest sage of his time. As Will Rogers said, "All I know is what I read in the papers."
That's it for NOW. Thanks for watching.