Saturday, April 29, 2006

Carlyle eyes Univision, Iraq war costs approach $320 billion

That two Univision DJs are at the heart of this feel-good story about a movement coming of age is somewhat ironic. Univision, after all, is owned by Republican backer Jerrold Perenchio, who once donated $400,000 to anti-immigrant California Governor Pete Wilson. In a merger approved almost three years ago, Univision acquired all of its sixty-three radio stations from HBC, which was 26 percent owned by Clear Channel, home to Rush Limbaugh. In 2005-06 Univision donated 72 percent of its total $88,450 campaign contributions to the GOP. But given George W. Bush's relatively moderate stance on immigration reform (the Lou Dobbs hard right equates Bush's guest-worker program with "amnesty") as well as big business's need for immigrants both as low-wage employees and consumers, maybe it's not so odd.

That's from Ed Morales' "The Media Is the Mensaje" and, as C.I. noted, "Which is probably among the reasons, as noted in the New York Times yesterday, that radio and TV giant Univision now has the Carlyle Group sniffing around it along with all the more 'traditional' suiters." This is like when they announced they were buying movie theaters when Michael Moore's movie was coming out.

It's the weekend. I'll note two things from Democracy Now!

Iraq War Costs Approach $320B
A new Congressional report says the cost of the war in Iraq will soon top $320 billion dollars -- a figure that will likely more than double by war's end. According to the Congressional Research Service, the ongoing operations in Iraq and Afghanistan stand to cost nearly as much as the departments of Education, Justice and Homeland Security combined.

If you've found no reason to speak out, despite the loss of life on all sides, maybe the cost of the illegal war will finally be the thing that reaches you? Or maybe you like living in your apathy footy-pajamas? We went to see Threepenny Opera which was fun (Nina and my folks really loved it) but I was listening to people talk on the way in and all and I was thinking, "The big protest goes on here tomorrow" and I guess I was expecting that this would be something people were talking about. I didn't hear anyone talking about it. This one guy came up to Nina and me and started talking. He seemed like a cool enough guy. But when we told him where we were from and he asked us why we came in this weekend, he seemed to have no idea there was a demonstration going on. It wasn't that he was someone who didn't care, he just didn't know.
He wrote down information on it and he says he'll be taking part but I'm wondering how many people will? Nina thinks I'm worrying for no reason and that it will be a large turnout. I hope she's right. It kind of depressed me. My sisters were telling me the same thing Nina said. And they were going that they were here and that guy would probably go so not to worry. I hope they're right.

Specter Warns of NSA Funding Cut in Domestic Spy Row
On Capitol Hill Thursday, Republican Senator Arlen Specter said the Bush administration is continuing to stonewall congressional inquiries into its warrantless domestic spy program. Specter said he is considering a proposal to cut off funding for the National Security Agency until the Bush administration answers questions over the program's legal justification. Specter said : "Institutionally, the presidency is walking all over Congress."

Am I so worried about the turnout that I'm feeling like cheering on Arlen Specter? I'm really wondering that. I doubt he means much of what he says because he could have done more. But I do wonder why that comes from a Republican. I read a thing by DiFi where she was saying that she couldn't vote for something she didn't know anything about. But it wasn't as strong as his statement. A Democratic Senator, and I'm forgetting her name, had a good point this week where she was confronting Bully Boy's lies and saying stuff like "Where is the oil money?" On that, she was talking about how Bully Boy had said that Iraq's oil income would pay for the occupation.

Are Democrats just going to try to play it safe for the entire election?

It's May next week and I'm not hearing real points being made strongly by most of them. Maybe it's a media coverage issue? Probably not a good idea to blog when you're down.

I'm listening to a CD Kat brought with her. It's Richie Havens but I don't know the title and am too tired to get up and grab the case. Wally, Rebecca, C.I. and I are all blogging. Rebecca and Wally are already done. And asleep, lucky dogs. I'd go to sleep too but C.I.'s rubbing eyes and if C.I. can do this and be tired, I can too.

Wally and me were going through the news for his "Bully Boy Press" and laughing about Bully Boy. That cheered me up but then my bud bailed and went to sleep! I'm joking, I don't blame him. But I really did start feeling down when I started blogging.

Probably being tired doesn't help.

So I guess I'll talk about what I'm hoping for later today. I hope we get some spirit and some really heart in the demonstration. I hope it's a lot of people. I'm really afraid of how the press will trash the protest if we don't have a big number. But I know it means more that people come who care. And I brought new people and so did others. So that helps. I know my sisters will go talk about it. Not just my youngest, but my older sisters are here too. They've had fun and all and they're real excited about the march and protest. They may be part of why I'm nervous. If it's a disappointment and all.

Okay, it's official: I'm depressed. I just went to see what C.I. wrote and it's like an essay. I was hoping maybe there was an idea I could develop here cause I thought it would be a "link fest" but it's an essay. You should read it. Now C.I.'s going through the paper trying to find out what to write about. I wish I could write stuff when I'm tired but instead it's all just doom and gloom and dull.

***C.I. note: Mike's fallen asleep. I was going to close the laptop and I see he didn't publish. I'm tagging and publishing for him. If this was a work in progress that he wanted to read over before posting, blame me, not him. I'm not going to wake him up to check. Everyone had a long night. We'll be doing something at The Third Estate Sunday Review, but I'm not sure what.****

MIKE NOTE: ADDED SATURDAY NIGHT: Thanks to C.I. for posting and tagging. I sat back on the couch and rested my head and eyes -- I thought! Ended up falling out. I'm Fall Out Boy! With none of the cell phone photos! :D
I was wrong to worry, it was a great crowd. I thought I saw Danny Schechter. Maybe he's got a twin. :D
But it looked just like him. We're all going out to eat and then coming back here to work on the latest edition of The Third Estate Sunday Review.