Comcast’s spokespersons admitted it paid people to do the same for a hearing on the company’s actions regarding its interference with peer-to-peer file-sharing services such as BitTorrent. The placeholders not only held spots in line, but also crowded into the hearing itself, preventing more than 100 attendees — many of whom had come to speak against Comcast — from getting inside.Continue reading →
Years ago, when Bosnia-Serbia-Kosovo was aflame, I found myself tuning out the conflict because of difficulty tracking all the warring factions. Afterward, I read a book on the subject, Michael Parenti’s “To Kill a Nation: The Attack on Yugoslavia” (Verso, 2002). However illuminating, after about a week I’d forgotten who was who. My only consolation was that 99 percent of Americans understood even less.
When the US invaded Iraq, the protagonists stood in sharp contrast. Then the Shiites and Sunnis divided and replicated.
You hear the term “Balkanization” applied to Iraq. True, it may split into smaller states. But the expression can also be used to describe how the division into factions results in a political scene too confusing for the average person. Continue reading →
In 1990, Congress revised the Clean Air Act to enable utilities to use market efficiencies to lower sulfur dioxide (SO2)pollution from power plants. In response to this cap-and-trade system, utilities have reduced SO2 pollution by 30% more than the federal government required. A similar mechanism has been suggested for reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Earlier this month the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released their analysis of three alternatives to reducing CO2 emissions, and their conclusion was that a carbon tax was the most efficient method, not the oft-touted cap and trade system. However, as is so often the case, the devil is in the details, rather than in the executive summary. Continue reading →