On Weakened Edition Saturday Michele Kelemen covers the pushed aside role that the US is enjoying in the Middle East. It's a story worth covering as Helena Cobban and Tony Karon have done more ably than NPR could hope to (Kelemen has to turn to "Richard Murphy who was the assistant Secretary of State for the Near East in the Reagan(!!!) years for her severest critic of the Bushist approach to the region.) But even in a critical piece Kelemen opens it with this winner:
"For a Secretary of State who has made Middle East peace a priority this year, Condoleezza Rice is sounding a bit more like an observer than a negotiator..."Holy crap, if I had a dollar for every time NPR links the name of Bush or Rice to the search for "peace" I'd be as rich as...hmm, I don't know...Kevin Klose ($500,000+).
Ari Shapiro talks to Jacob Soboroff about the Florida election tragedy of 2000. Soboroff actually seems like a nice enough guy with his heart in the right place ( I mean the guy wants elections to be run fairly, and for turnout to be high, etc.) But the focus in this piece is all on the butterfly ballots and hanging chads of the Florida fiasco. There is nothing in this piece - or on Soboroff's Why Tuesday web site for that matter - about the real theft of democracy by the Republican-right that Florida was: the nasty story of removing African American voters, the collusion of Diebold and Choicepoint, and the Republican mob suppression of the recount, the fact that Al Gore actually would have won a statewide recount, etc., etc., etc. Ah, but that is so pre-2001 isn't it?