Koppeling a Plea

Koppeling a Plea

Koppeling a Plea

A summary of what's in the major U.S. newspapers.
Oct. 23 1997 6:48 AM

Koppeling a Plea

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leads with President Clinton's announcement of a plan to combat global warming. The New York Times lead is a presidential advisory commission's recommendation of numerous new rights for patients. The Washington Post goes with the news that during the '96 campaign, the Republican National Committee steered $1 million of donors' funds to sympathetic outside groups such as the National Right to Life Committee. And the Los Angeles Times leads with Boeing's announcement of the largest loss in company history.

USAT says the Clinton greenhouse plan, to be submitted to an upcoming international conference on the problem, sets up a pollution credits market under which companies profit from getting below emissions standards, promises further incentives for companies cutting emissions before 2008, and also invests $5 billion over five years on energy-efficient technology. But, says the paper, the proposal is considered not stringent enough by many environmentalist groups, U.S. allies, and developing countries, yet too stringent by many American industries. The WP, in its front-page piece, points out that Clinton's proposal falls short of the goals he outlined in 1993, when he called for voluntary cuts in greenhouse gas emissions back to 1990 levels by the year 2000. It's the NYT, in its front-page story, that most clearly explains the relative smallness of the plan's $5 billion investment in global warming control: "enough to give every citizen an annual rebate covering one-fourth of the cost of a high-efficiency light bulb."

Earlier this year, Republicans howled upon learning that DNC officials helped steer givers to congenial outside groups. Today's WP lead shows that the RNC did it too. The stratagem allows both donors and political parties to spend on their pet causes without being identified (unlike political parties, interest groups don't have to disclose their money sources).

According to the Times, the presidential commission says that patients' rights should include the right to an external review of denials of care or coverage by insurers and HMOs, and the right to such information as how often and how successfully a doctor has performed a procedure. President Clinton is expected to endorse all this, although, the Times points out, nobody has explained how these new rights would be enforced.

The LAT's report on Boeing (which the paper describes as "the world's premier aircraft maker." Isn't that just a little boosterish for a front-page story?) says that the company shocked Wall St. yesterday with its surprise disclosure of a $1.6 billion loss. It seems that aircraft orders are rolling in, but the company can't keep up because of part shortages and the hiring of thousands of inexperienced workers.

More detail comes to light today about the Justice Department's case against Microsoft. Both the Wall Street Journal and WP reveal that Justice says it was Compaq that was prevented by MS from offering its buyers easy keyboard access to Netscape software. And the Post reports that the government's petition also claims that Gateway 2000 and Micron Electronics were told by Microsoft that they could not remove Internet Explorer or its desktop icon from their machines. Also, the Post says the government's evidence includes some email from Bill Gates to his company's executive committee.

The WP says that the White House is trying to neutralize the coffee videos by getting the release of a 1996 ABC News tape in which candidate Bob Dole admits that the RNC was financing ads that were helping his campaign. ABC has refused the request. On the tape, Dole explains to Ted Koppel that the ad is okay because "it never says, 'I'm running for president.'"