TVIn June 2000 global-warming prophesier Ross Gelbspan lamented, “Over the last seven years, the fossil-fuel lobby has mounted an extremely effective campaign of disinformation to persuade the public and policymakers that the issue of atmospheric warming is still stuck in the limbo of scientific uncertainty. That campaign for the longest time targeted the science. It then misrepresented the economics. And most recently it attacked the diplomatic foundations of the climate convention. And it has been extraordinarily successful in creating a relentless drumbeat of doubt in the public mind.”

The Dollar SqueezeAs of Tuesday, July 15, crowds outside branches of the failed California bank IndyMac were getting ugly. On the second business day after federal agents seized control of bank assets and promised orderly restitution of FDIC-insured funds to IndyMac customers, large numbers of shocked depositors still had not been reimbursed. Those who had more than the FDIC-guaranteed $100,000 in IndyMac accounts were still awaiting word as to what portion of their life savings they could expect to see again.

Mahmoud AhmadinejadWill we be seeing $10-$12/gallon gasoline and a lot more body bags before the end of the year? That depends on the answers to a couple other important questions, such as: will the Bush-Cheney war hawks launch a war against Iran before the November elections, as they have been aching to do for the past several years? Or will they encourage/sanction an attack on Iran by Israel that will end up drawing us into the fray? Either way, we certainly seem to be headed needlessly on that disastrous collision course.

Fed Chairman BernankeOn Thursday, July 10, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testified before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Financial Services. The backdrop for the committee meeting, of course, is the ongoing turmoil in U.S. and global financial markets, highlighted by the Federal Reserve’s unprecedented intervention to prevent the failure of giant investment bank Bear Stearns, and more recent worries that the two government-sponsored mortgage lending companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are in danger of implosion.

John F. McManusIt was a full year ago when the New York Times carried a small 220-word article claiming that rumors about construction of a massive new highway system from Mexico through the United States into Canada were the product of “urban legend.” But the July 31, 2007 article included a tiny 1x1.5-inch photo showing a map of the planned route that would, in effect, bisect Texas and gravely impact other states. Only a conceptual drawing of the road’s potential location, the photo had been released by NASCO, the North American SuperCorridor Coalition. If no substance to the rumors, why the NASCO map?

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