When you decide that you need to take your children on a tour of the slums of New Delhi to see how the other half lives, there is something wrong in your world. You make too damn much money. If you have to see how the other half lives by touring their neighborhood, there is something really, really wrong in your world. How about we take a bunch of poor people to tour your neighborhood? They can come by and peek in your windows. What ever happened to serious, real charity work? This is where you learn about those who are less fortunate. You volunteer at your local church or the Red Cross or Habitat for Humanity. You give your time and money and help someone. This is how you really, truly learn about poverty. A couple of hours on some tour bus may make you feel better about your life and your world. If that’s the purpose, then that’s fine. Let’s not fool ourselves into thinking that we have really done something. Now, if we volunteer and actually help some people that need help, well, now we are on to something.
Errington talks with two great guests on this show. The first is Linda Monk, constitutional scholar and author of The Words We Live By, who tries to make sense for us the very complicated Supreme Court decision regarding corporations. In what Ms Monk calls an “astounding example of judicial activism,” corporations have been deemed to have the same rights to free speech that individual Americans enjoy. Given that they retain limited liability, however, the rights of corporations become “Super Rights.” An individual’s liability would limit defamatory claims… not so for a corporation’s campaign ad! What to do? Monk supports a constitutional amendment prohibiting for-profit companies’ participation in elections. Such an endeavor would be, in Monk’s words, “a hallmark of the new populist movement.” I like it.
Errington’s second guest is Patrick Fitzsimmons, the regional executive director of the Red Cross for western North Carolina. Mr. Fitzsimmons explains some of the ways our donations make it to help in Haiti. At least three million of Haiti’s 10 million citizens have been immediately affected by last month’s massive earthquake. That’s one third of the population! Stepping up to the challenges like the decimated infrastructure, debilitated power grid, the lack of water and gasoline, the Red Cross is coming to the rescue the best they can. They’re operating hospitals and first aid and helping to distribute food, water, blood products and other emergency supplies. Remember, 91 cents of every dollar gets directly to those who need it after negligible but necessary administrative costs.
Both of these issues spark insightful debate. Now that’s progressive radio!
Hurricane Hanna is knocking on the door. I have Red Cross spokesperson Cynthia Watke on the line, we discuss preparations for Hanna and the ongoing needs from Gustav. Professor Dwight Mullen from the University of North Carolina, Asheville is in the house!! We review the last two weeks: DNC/RNC. Sarah Palin. Joe Biden. We discuss everything from Iraq to Vietnam to Healthcare and the Economy. This is a great show. Enjoy!!