Tag Archives: bush

Bush Institute program set to launch for PBS

The Dallas-based George W. Bush Institute, a think tank founded by the former president, is working on a new public television program (in cooperation with Grace Creek Media) that plans to focus on global health issues in addition to domestic policy and education. According to The Dallas Morning News‘ Lori Stahl, two episodes of “Ideas In Action with Jim Glassman” have already been taped, and the program will start airing on PBS and some cable stations in February.

bushHost Jim Glassman, who also heads Bush’s think tank, brings with him a solid, if somewhat partisan, resume. He hosted TechnoPolitics on PBS in the late ’90s, published The New Republic in the ’80s and has long written conservative-leaning columns in various media outlets, including The Washington Post and SHNS.

Stahl writes that PBS viewers have already begun to push back against what they fear will inevitably be idealogically motivated programming. Glassman’s response? The show will fall somewhere between neutral and “absurdly biased.”

Glassman said the new show will not try to promote a political viewpoint. Noting that he’s well-acquainted with PBS standards from a stint hosting the PBS series TechnoPolitics, Glassman said, “If you get something that’s absurdly biased, people aren’t going to watch it.”

At the same time, he acknowledged that the Bush Institute is looking for places to influence the course of civic action, not just generate more debate.

“We’re not going to shy away from the fact that we’ve built the Bush Institute on principles,” Glassman said, noting that other public television show hosts are not entirely neutral. He cited Bill Moyers, William Buckley and Tavis Smiley as examples.

One-time surgeon general pick faces SEC case

In a tale of alleged fraud and political access, Dan Christensen of the Broward Bulldog in South Florida (and no relation to this blog post’s author), writes about cardiologist Zachariah P. Zachariah who has been accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission of “using nonpublic information to make more than a half-million dollars in illegal profits from stock trades in 2005.”

George W. Bush was reportedly interested in appointing Zachariah to be U.S. surgeon general, until White House counsel learned he was under investigation by the SEC.

Zachariah would have replaced Richard Carmona, M.D., M.P.H., who testified to Congress in 2007 that the Bush administration had let politics supersede science and forbid him to speak publicly about some issues, including stem cell research, and watered down reports, including one about the dangers of second-hand smoke.

Vegetables, healthy food on Obama agenda

In yet another break with the Bush family legacy, the Obamas, led by matriarch Michelle, have embraced broccoli and other local greens and encourage others to do the same. New York Times reporter Rachel L. Swarns chronicled the pro-vegetable, pro-local eating agenda of the first family. Swarns leads with the First Lady praising a local soup kitchen’s steamed broccoli and homemade mushroom risotto, then digs deeper into her struggles to promote a healthy agenda both around the country and around her own dinner table.

White House officials say the focus on healthy living will be a significant item on Mrs. Obama’s agenda, which already includes supporting working families and military spouses. As the nation battles an obesity epidemic and a hard-to-break taste for oversweetened and oversalted dishes, her message is clear: Fresh, nutritious foods are not delicacies to be savored by the wealthy, but critical components of the diets of ordinary and struggling families.

Some healthy-eating advocates want the Obamas to go even further, Swarn found.

(Gourmet magazine Editor Ruth) Reichl would like the White House kitchen to issue regular news releases that describe what the first couple and their daughters are eating. (Then parents across the country could tell their children, “You know, Malia and Sasha were eating salad yesterday. …”)