by Christy Harvey, Judd Legum and Jonathan Baskin
NAUGHTY AND NICE 2004
The Progress Report makes this year's holiday list and checks it twice
: Ron Artest, for punching out
the front row at an NBA game.
: Mark Cuban and Dallas Mavericks season ticket holders, for offering 140 front row seats
to American soldiers wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.
: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, for sending U.S. soldiers into battle without the equipment and armor
they need to fight.
: Grassroots charity groups like "Give 2 The Troops
" and "Operation Gratitude
," for sending care packages, supplies and reminders of home to American troops abroad.
: Merck, for spending millions to market the pain-reliever Vioxx to consumers long after the company knew it was unsafe
: Dr. David Graham, of the FDA's Office of Drug Safety, for fighting to keep dangerous drugs off the market
: Bernard Kerik, for turning an apartment donated for weary Ground Zero police and rescue workers into a love nest
for his adulterous affairs.
: Miramax Films, for putting the kibosh
on Kerik's summer blockbuster biopic.
: Congress, for underfunding the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program
(LIHEAP). allocating "$164 million less than needed to cover the expected 24 percent increase in home heating costs" this winter.
: Richard Hamann and his wife, Donna
, for paying the electricity bills for the entire town of Anthon, Iowa, because they wanted to give something back to their community.
: NRA Radio
, for broadcasting anti-gun-control propaganda and calling it legitimate news.
, Arnie Arnesen
, Tony Trupiano
, Thom Hartmann
, Wendy Wilde
, Al Franken
, Katherine Lanpher
and the rest of the Air America
crew, for showing progressive radio can be thought-provoking, hard-hitting and fun.
: Department of Homeland Security, for omitting "major sites
" like chemical plants and dams from its unfinished national database of potential terrorist targets.
: Department of Homeland Security, for including "water parks and miniature golf courses
" in the national database. At your local putt putt, the terrorists never win.
: The Environmental Protection Agency, for using camcorders
to bribe parents into offering up their toddlers as guinea pigs for a study about the dangers of pesticides on children…sponsored by the chemical industry.Nice
: The Natural Resources Defense Council
, for fighting to protect kids from the harmful effects of pesticides and chemicals.
: Right-wing conservatives in the House of Representatives, for changing ethics rules
so Tom DeLay (R-TX) could one day be their indicted leader.
: Whistleblowers like Bunnatine Greenhouse
, Richard Foster
and Paul O'Neill
, for holding our government to a higher ethical standard.
: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, for letting a machine do his work (and not hand-signing condolence letters to grieving families
: Ashlee Simpson, for letting a machine do her work (and not forcing us to listen to her natural singing voice
: Medicare head Tom Scully
, Rep. Billy Tauzin
, Rep. James Greenwood
and trade representatives Ralph Ives and Claude Burcky
, for using public service for personal benefit, taking lucrative, top-dollar jobs with the pharmaceutical industry they had formerly regulated.
: Rep. Henry Waxman, for using public service for public benefit, compiling reports on everything from the Halliburton to undue secrecy
in the White House.
: Russian President Vladimir Putin
, for single-handedly shutting down the press, jailing his political opposition and trying to validate his hand-picked, fraudulently elected lapdog in Ukraine.Nice
: Viktor Yushchenko and supporters of the Orange Revolution, for fighting against all odds -- including poison -- to bring democracy to the Ukraine
: Bill "I Like Families" Donahue, for using his pulpit to launch partisan, hate-filled attacks
: The Reverend Jim Wallis, for teaching us something about real "moral values
: Alberto Gonzales
, for crafting memos which provided legal justification for torturing detainees.
: The International Committee of the Red Cross
, for exposing brutal treatment of detainees in U.S. custody.
: EPA administrator Mike Leavitt, for blaming pollution on poverty.Nice
: The Union of Concerned Scientists
, for giving us the facts about global warming
, clean energy
and the Bush administration's ideological approach to science
: Sinclair Media, for planning to run an hour long anti-Kerry screed
as "news" just before the U.S. presidential election.
: Media Matters
and the blogosphere, for forcing Sinclair to change its plans. (And continuing to demand
that Sinclair stop broadcasting one-sided political spin.)
: Sen. Norm Coleman
, for using the oil-for-food scandal as an excuse to launch an attack against the United Nations.
: U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan
, for launching the first serious attempt to reform the United Nations and bring it into the 21st Century.
: The Kuwaiti Hilton, for giving Halliburton's employees a place to stay
while they bilked US taxpayers.
: Paris Hilton, for bringing the "simple life" to Washington, D.C
: Bill O'Reilly, for claiming Christmas is "under siege
: Americans, for not laying siege
Happy Holidays from The Progress Report Team
and everyone at American Progress, dedicated to making America a little less naughty and a lot more nice.