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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

  • Army Whistleblower Lt. Col. Daniel Davis Says Pentagon Deceiving Public on Afghan War

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    "Senior ranking U.S. military leaders have so distorted the truth when communicating with the U.S. Congress and American people in regards to conditions on the ground in Afghanistan that the truth has become unrecognizable." That’s the assessment of a damning new report by Army Lt. Col. Daniel Davis, who returned in October from his second year-long deployment in Afghanistan and says military officials have misled the American public about how poorly the decade-long war is going. He argues that local Afghan governments are unable to provide the basic needs of the people and that insurgents control virtually all parts of Afghanistan beyond eyeshot of a U.S. base. We speak with Michael Hastings of Rolling Stone, who obtained a copy of the full report and published it last week. "Lieutenant Colonel Davis is on the right side of history, and the fact [is] that he believes in this and is willing to risk [his career]," Hastings says. [includes rush transcript]

  • NY Hospitals Saddle Uninsured Patients with Massive Debt Despite $100s of Millions in Gov’t Aid

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    As the ranks of the uninsured continue to rise, a major new study has found that most New York medical centers are violating rules intended to help patients who are uninsured and cannot afford healthcare. Two-thirds of hospitals studied either violated the law, failed to comply with state guidelines or created additional barriers to financial assistance, despite receiving a combined total of more than $463 million from the state’s Indigent Care Pool. We’re joined by three guests: Elisabeth Benjamin of the Community Service Society of New York, which conducted the two-year study; Jessica Curtis, the Hospital Accountability Project director at Community Catalyst, who says the problem is not unique to New York; and Hope Rubel, an uninsured patient who was sued some $88,000 in hospital bills by a hospital that took in more than $50 million in aid that same year. "[It] infuriated me [that] all this money is sitting in these hospitals’ bank accounts," Rubel says. [includes rush transcript]

  • On First Anniversary of Wisconsin Uprising, Gov. Walker Fights Recall Effort by Energized Movement

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    Today marks the first anniversary of the Wisconsin uprising that erupted after Republican Gov. Scott Walker announced plans to eliminate almost all collective bargaining rights for most public workers, as well as slash their pay and benefits. Now, one year later, Walker is in the midst of a recall effort and faces an investigation for campaign corruption. "People have begun to recognize that they shouldn’t just wait for elections," says John Nichols, who covered the protests for The Nation magazine. "They should go to the street and challenge political power at the point where that power is taking away their rights or threatening them in some fundamental way." Nichols is the author of the new book, "Uprising: How Wisconsin Renewed the Politics of Protest, from Madison to Wall Street." [includes rush transcript]