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New wave of support for HR 676

“America’s trillion-dollar health care system would be far more efficient if all the money spent on administrative costs and insurance profit went directly to health care. There’s only one way to do that effectively: single-payer coverage administered by the federal government.” Thus spoke the Roanoke Times and World News in a May 7 editorial. The newspaper joins New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, the St. Louis Post Dispatch, the Charles (W. Va.) Gazette, and the Des Moines Register and many other papers in calling for single-payer health care.

Tennessee cuts services to disabled

NASHVILLE — Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen has sentenced persons with disabilities who require ventilators to “life imprisonment” in a nursing home, according to a statement issued by a civil rights organization for persons with disabilities.

Union pension funds exercise clout

DETROIT (PAI) — Union investment money is doing the talking — and in some cases, the walking — as organized labor is moving into a renewed strategy of using pension dollars to win work for members, improve their standing, and further union political goals.

World Notes

Angola: Desperate plight of children; China: Boost developing countries role in UN; Venezuela: Int’l oil firms owe big tax bill; Finland: Paper strike/lockout continues; Pakistan: Troops jail workers

Rigged election blocks Irans path to reform

Iran’s ultraconservative clerical establishment has denied millions of voters the chance to continue on the path of reform by rigging the results of the June 17 presidential election.

Education gets huge boost in Venezuela

Revolution, suggests radical educator Paulo Freire, is “the ultimate teacher … giving first place to the indispensable role of education in the process of forming the New Woman and the New Man.” Although Freire wrote these words almost 30 years ago, in his preface to Jonathan Kozol’s book “Children of the Revolution,” he could have been writing about Venezuela today.

Bush aid to Africa called crumbs

WASHINGTON — Aid groups blasted President George W. Bush for refusing additional development aid for Africa, branding his offer of $674 million during a meeting with British Prime Minister Tony Blair “crumbs.”

UAW resisting GM onslaught

The United Auto Workers union is digging in its heels to protect its members, their families and communities from General Motors’ drastic job cuts.

Schwarzeneggers popularity sinks after special election call

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s declaration of a Nov. 8 special election is apparently not doing him any good with voters. In a poll taken after his June 13 announcement, the governor’s approval ratings plunged to new lows. The Field Poll found a mere 31 percent of California adults and 37 percent of registered voters approve of Schwarzenegger’s job performance. Support among Republicans is now 66 percent, down from 84 percent three months ago. Most important: backing of nonpartisan voters has sunk to 35 percent from 48 percent in February.

Civil rights groups contest FBI on Lodi arrests

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Northern California and the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights have filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to get records related to the arrest of five Lodi, Calif., men on terrorism charges.

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