Democracy Now! May 7, 2003

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Program Title:
Democracy Now! May 7, 2003
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Governments across Latin America have launched investigations after it has been revealed that a US company is obtaining personal information on millions of citizens in the region and selling it to the Bush administration. The company? ChoicePoint the same company that disenfranchised thousands of people in Florida because their names resembled the names of felons; Consumer advocate Ralph Nader criticizes President Bush s proposed $550 billion tax cut

9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:06 Headlines 9:06-9:07 One Minute Music Break 9:07-9:20: U.S. is Buying Data on foreign citizens and Choicepoint is selling it. Governments across Latin America have launched investigations after it has been revealed that a US company is obtaining personal information on millions of citizens in the region and selling it to the Bush administration. The London Guardian reports that documents show the company, ChoicePoint, received well over $10 million last year in return for the information. The information includes Mexico's entire list of voters, including dates of birth and passport numbers, as well as Colombia's citizen identification database. ChoicePoint s advertisements for the Justice Department promised, for example, to deliver a QUOTE "national registry file of all adult Colombians, including date and place of birth, gender, parentage, physical description, marital status, passport number, and registered profession". But it is illegal under Colombian law for government agencies to disclose this information, unless it is in response to a request for data on a named individual. Our listeners and viewers may remember Choice Point from the contested 2000 election. The state of Florida hired a subsidiary of ChoicePoint, Database Technologies, to remove convicted felons from the state s voter registration lists. BBC investagive reporter Greg Palast revealed the company disenfranchised tens of thousands of voters, most of whom were poor, and black. Thousands of people were scrubbed from the voter roles simply because their names resembled the names of felons. <sum> Robert Ellis Smith, publisher of Privacy Journal. He is also a journalist and author of several books on privacy issues including War Stories: Accounts of Persons Victimized by Invasions of Privacy. <sum> Link: One Minute Music Break 9:21-9:40: As President Bush pushes for a $550 billion tax cut, 2000 Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader discusses his view of the economy A week ago President Bush decked out in a flight suit, landed on an aircraft carrier to declare the war in Iraq over. As a sign he is afraid to follow his father s footsteps, this week his focus is no longer war but the economy. A decade ago President George H.W. Bush lost the 1992 election despite being victorious in the first Gulf War. The lagging economy was the often cited reason. Now his son is attempting to portray the economy as his top concern. Last week he met with the chief executives of the big three automakers -- General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and the Chrysler group. They all endorsed his $550 billion tax cut. Well today we re going to hear from the man who began his career as an activist promoting auto safety, Ralph Nader. For more than 35 years, Nader has been an advocate and activist around issues related to health, safety, economics, environmental pollution, workers rights and corporate influence. He has been an outspoken critic of the Bush Administration s economic policies and spending priorities -- the tax cut for the wealthy and the massive build up in military spending. Nader founded the Public Interest Research Group and the Women s Policy Stidies among other groups He was the Green Party presidential candidate in 2000. <sum> President George W. Bush, recorded May 5, 2003 <sum> Ralph Nader, 2000 presidential candidate for Green Party, speaking in New York at the American Spirit, Values & Power: Resisting "Empire," Affirming Our Vision. The conference took place at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York. 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:58 NADER cont d 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Sharif Abdul Kouddous, Ana Nogueira, Elizabeth Press with help from Noah Reibel and Vilka Tzouras. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer. Thanks also to Uri Galed, Angela Alston, Emily Kunstler, Orlando Richards, Simba Rousseau, Rafael delaUz, Gabriel Weiss, Johnny Sender, Rich Kim, Karen Ranucci, Fatima Mojadiddy, Denis Moynihan and Jenny Filipazzo.

Date Recorded on: 
May 7, 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
May 7, 2003
Item duration: 
59 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., May 7, 2003
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