BTS 8/27/07: Katrina 2nd Anniversary; Deportation/ICE Raids; Alberto Gonzalez's Resignation

Listen: Play - Download

The Bush regime seems to be falling apart.

Its war in Iraq is a catastrophic failure. The I.C.E. raids are its biggest recent success, but deporting a large sector of the immigrant labor force is leaving the produce of U.S. agribusiness rotting in the fields. The scandal of the broken private health insurance system – even as Bush threatens to veto a minimal measure to extend Medicare to children in desperate need – encapsulates millions of Americans’ profound economic insecurity and growing fears for their families’ future.

The real condition of the richest country in the history of the planet is highlighted by events like the collapse of the bridge in Minneapolis, the product of decades of neglect of a decaying American infrastructure; the entombment of miners and rescuers in a Utah mountain mine that no halfway decent regulatory system would ever have allowed to open; the completely broken promises to the people of New Orleans. The housing bubble, prolonged and inflated by the predatory “subprime” mortgage industry, is now rupturing and spreading through the international financial markets with consequences still unknown.

When Karl Rove deserts the ship, you know it’s going down -- and he was joined today by Alberto Gonzales, just in time to avoid impeachment.

And so, we begin tonight’s program by marking the 2nd anniversary of Hurricanes Katrina & Rita, looking at how an American city was left on its own with the Rev. James Lawson & Tom Honore.

We then turn to the deportation of Elvira Arrellano and talk to Dan LaBotz about what the ICE raids are doing to labor and agriculture in the absence of a sane and humane immigration policy.

And finally we talk to John Nichols about the top news story of the day, the resignation of discredited Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez.

Read More for info on tonight's guests:

1. Rev. James Lawson was the leading theoretician and tactician of nonviolence in the U.S. Civil Rights movement, and continues today as an advocate for the power of collective nonviolent struggle in furtherance of campaigns for peace, justice, freedom, equality, and human rights. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called James Lawson "the leading nonviolence theorist in the world." Reverend Lawson moved to Los Angeles in 1974 to lead Holman United Methodist Church. He has continued to train activists in nonviolence and to work in support of a number of causes, including workers' rights to a living wage. He is an advocate for a moral economy.

2. Tom Honoré’s roots are in the African/French-Creole culture of Louisiana. He was an ordained Josephite priest, but resigned from the priesthood for a federal public service career with the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. Throughout most of his professional work life, Tom joined with other advocates and with non-governmental organizations to promote civil rights protections for poor people, especially people of color. In 1999, Tom retired from HUD and now promotes peace and justice and Church renewal as a member Call To Action-USA, as a weekly volunteer with the Los Angeles Catholic Worker community, as a member of the Steering Committee for ICUJP and more. His memoir, Grace At Every Turn, the Journey of an African Creole into and out of the Priesthood, was published in the spring of 2004 by Xlibris Press, a subsidiary of Random House.

3. Dan LaBotz teaches history and Latin American studies at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He is the author of Rank-and-File Rebellion: Teamsters for a Democratic Union (1990), Mask of Democracy: Labor Suppression in Mexico Today (1992), and Democracy in Mexico: Peasant Rebellion and Political Reform (1995), Made in Indonesia: Indonesian Workers Since Suharto (2001) and the editor of Mexican Labor News & Analysis, a monthly collaboration of the Mexico City-based Authentic Labor Front (FAT), the Pittsburgh-based United Electrical Workers (UE), and the Resource Center of the Americas. His writing has also appeared in Against the Current, Labor Notes, and Monthly Review among other publications.

4. John Nichols is the Washington correspondent for The Nation, a contributing writer for The Progressive and In These Times and the associate editor of the Capital Times in Madison, Wisconsin. He is also a frequent guest on this radio show and many others as well. John’s latest book, The Genius of Impeachment (The New Press). His other books include a best-selling biography of Vice President Dick Cheney, Dick: The Man Who is President (The New Press), also published in French and Arabic, Jews for Buchanan (The New Press) and several books on the media co-authored with Robert W. McChesney. Of Nichols, author Gore Vidal says: "Of all the giant slayers now afoot in the great American desert, John Nichols’s sword is the sharpest."