hard heads soft hearts

a scratch pad for half-formed thoughts by a liberal political junkie who's nobody special. ''Hard Heads, Soft Hearts'' is the title of a book by Princeton economist Alan Blinder, and tends to be a favorite motto of neoliberals, especially liberal economists.

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Friday, June 14, 2002

I just wanted to bring to your attention two
*fantastic* articles I read recently which I think
could make two good topics for your show.

One is a Sacbee special report on the California Power
Crisis called "How Californians Got Burned" (May 6),
written by Sam Stanton. It is hands down the best
reporting on the causes of the power crisis. I've
trawled through the vast wasteland of California power
crisis reporting, mostly unable to get past cliches
like "botched deregulation", etc. The Stanton article
explains how it all happened, and who was responsible
(practically everybody), and most importantly, Stanton
finds the precious few people who foresaw what would
happen and tried to stop it. You *must* read the
article, and I'm hoping you can invite Stanton and
some of the people featured in his article on your

here is the URL:


The other article is called "The Spectrum Lords", by
Josh Marshall, and is about the fact that the spectrum
bandwidth for Channels 60-69 is worth billions of
dollars, and there is an intense lobbying effort for
Congress to give the spectrum rights to private
interests instead of auctioning it off on behalf of
the taxpayers. It is the closest thing to legalized
theft that I can think of, and I think it could be a
good bipartisan cause