Marriage is love.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Bush: The First American Dictator

"The Hidden State Steps Forward


[from the January 9, 2006 issue of Nation]

When the New York Times revealed that George W. Bush had ordered the National Security Agency to wiretap the foreign calls of American citizens without seeking court permission, as is indisputably required by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), passed by Congress in 1978, he faced a decision. Would he deny the practice, or would he admit it? He admitted it. But instead of expressing regret, he took full ownership of the deed, stating that his order had been entirely justified, that he had in fact renewed it thirty times, that he would continue to renew it and--going even more boldly on the offensive--that those who had made his law-breaking known had committed a "shameful act." As justification, he offered two arguments, one derisory, the other deeply alarming. The derisory one was that Congress, by authorizing him to use force after September 11, had authorized him to suspend FISA, although that law is unmentioned in the resolution. Thus has Bush informed the members of a supposedly co-equal branch of government of what, unbeknownst to themselves, they were thinking when they cast their vote. The alarming argument is that as Commander in Chief he possesses "inherent" authority to suspend laws in wartime. But if he can suspend FISA at his whim and in secret, then what law can he not suspend? What need is there, for example, to pass or not pass the Patriot Act if any or all of its provisions can be secretly exceeded by the President?

Bush's choice marks a watershed in the evolution of his Administration. Previously when it was caught engaging in disgraceful, illegal or merely mistaken or incompetent behavior, he would simply deny it. "We have found the weapons of mass destruction!" "We do not torture!" However, further developments in the torture matter revealed a shift. Even as he denied the existence of torture, he and his officials began to defend his right to order it. His Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales, refused at his confirmation hearings to state that the torture called waterboarding, in which someone is brought to the edge of drowning, was prohibited. Then when Senator John McCain sponsored a bill prohibiting cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of prisoners, Bush threatened to veto the legislation to which it was attached. It was only in the face of majority votes in both houses against such treatment that he retreated from his claim.

But in the wiretapping matter, he has so far exhibited no such vacillation. Secret law-breaking has been supplanted by brazen law-breaking. The difference is critical. If abuses of power are kept secret, there is still the possibility that, when exposed, they will be stopped. But if they are exposed and still permitted to continue, then every remedy has failed, and the abuse is permanently ratified. In this case, what will be ratified is a presidency that has risen above the law.

The danger is not abstract or merely symbolic. Bush's abuses of presidential power are the most extensive in American history. He has launched an aggressive war ("war of choice," in today's euphemism) on false grounds. He has presided over a system of torture and sought to legitimize it by specious definitions of the word. He has asserted a wholesale right to lock up American citizens and others indefinitely without any legal showing or the right to see a lawyer or anyone else. He has kidnapped people in foreign countries and sent them to other countries, where they were tortured. In rationalizing these and other acts, his officials have laid claim to the unlimited, uncheckable and unreviewable powers he has asserted in the wiretapping case. He has tried to drop a thick shroud of secrecy over these and other actions.

There is a name for a system of government that wages aggressive war, deceives its citizens, violates their rights, abuses power and breaks the law, rejects judicial and legislative checks on itself, claims power without limit, tortures prisoners and acts in secret. It is dictatorship.

The Administration of George W. Bush is not a dictatorship, but it does manifest the characteristics of one in embryonic form. Until recently, these were developing and growing in the twilight world of secrecy. Even within the executive branch itself, Bush seemed to govern outside the normally constituted channels of the Cabinet and to rely on what Secretary of State Colin Powell's chief of staff has called a "cabal." Former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill reported the same thing. Cabinet meetings were for show. Real decisions were made elsewhere, out of sight. Another White House official, John DiIulio, has commented that there was "a complete lack of a policy apparatus" in the White House. "What you've got is everything, and I mean everything, being run by the political arm." As in many Communist states, a highly centralized party, in this case the Republican Party, was beginning to forge a parallel apparatus at the heart of government, a semi-hidden state-within-a-state, by which the real decisions were made.

With Bush's defense of his wiretapping, the hidden state has stepped into the open. The deeper challenge Bush has thrown down, therefore, is whether the country wants to embrace the new form of government he is creating by executive fiat or to continue with the old constitutional form. He is now in effect saying, "Yes, I am above the law--I am the law, which is nothing more than what I and my hired lawyers say it is--and if you don't like it, I dare you to do something about it."

Members of Congress have no choice but to accept the challenge. They did so once before, when Richard Nixon, who said, "When the President does it, that means it's not illegal," posed a similar threat to the Constitution. The only possible answer is to inform Bush forthwith that if he continues in his defiance, he will be impeached.

If Congress accepts his usurpation of its legislative power, they will be no Congress and might as well stop meeting. Either the President must uphold the laws of the United States, which are Congress's laws, or he must leave office."


Friday, December 30, 2005

Can we please wake up from this bad dream...NOW?

Women's Rights Laws and African Custom Clash

(I guess my Social Darwinism acquaintences** would say this is happening because...)

**NOT friends of mine...


Tuesday, December 27, 2005

He got what he wanted...

A chilling, apropos editorial from the Miami Herald:

Posted on Mon, Dec. 26, 2005

AFTER 9/11
Fear destroys what bin Laden could not

One wonders if Osama bin Laden didn't win after all. He ruined the America that existed on 9/11. But he had help.

If, back in 2001, anyone had told me that four years after bin Laden's attack our president would admit that he broke U.S. law against domestic spying and ignored the Constitution -- and then expect the American people to congratulate him for it -- I would have presumed the girders of our very Republic had crumbled.

Had anyone said our president would invade a country and kill 30,000 of its people claiming a threat that never, in fact, existed, then admit he would have invaded even if he had known there was no threat -- and expect America to be pleased by this -- I would have thought our nation's sensibilities and honor had been eviscerated.

If I had been informed that our nation's leaders would embrace torture as a legitimate tool of warfare, hold prisoners for years without charges and operate secret prisons overseas -- and call such procedures necessary for the nation's security -- I would have laughed at the folly of protecting human rights by destroying them.

If someone had predicted the president's staff would out a CIA agent as revenge against a critic, defy a law against domestic propaganda by bankrolling supposedly independent journalists and commentators, and ridicule a 37-year Marie Corps veteran for questioning U.S. military policy -- and that the populace would be more interested in whether Angelina is about to make Brad a daddy -- I would have called the prediction an absurd fantasy.

That's no America I know, I would have argued. We're too strong, and we've been through too much, to be led down such a twisted path.

What is there to say now?

All of these things have happened. And yet a large portion of this country appears more concerned that saying ''Happy Holidays'' could be a disguised attack on Christianity.

I evidently have a lot poorer insight regarding America's character than I once believed, because I would have expected such actions to provoke -- speaking metaphorically now -- mobs with pitchforks and torches at the White House gate. I would have expected proud defiance of anyone who would suggest that a mere terrorist threat could send this country into spasms of despair and fright so profound that we'd follow a leader who considers the law a nuisance and perfidy a privilege.

Never would I have expected this nation -- which emerged stronger from a civil war and a civil rights movement, won two world wars, endured the Depression, recovered from a disastrous campaign in Southeast Asia and still managed to lead the world in the principles of liberty -- would cower behind anyone just for promising to ``protect us.''

President Bush recently confirmed that he has authorized wiretaps against U.S. citizens on at least 30 occasions and said he'll continue doing it. His justification? He, as president -- or is that king? -- has a right to disregard any law, constitutional tenet or congressional mandate to protect the American people.

Is that America's highest goal -- preventing another terrorist attack? Are there no principles of law and liberty more important than this? Who would have remembered Patrick Henry had he written, ``What's wrong with giving up a little liberty if it protects me from death?''

Bush would have us excuse his administration's excesses in deference to the ''war on terror'' -- a war, it should be pointed out, that can never end. Terrorism is a tactic, an eventuality, not an opposition army or rogue nation. If we caught every person guilty of a terrorist act, we still wouldn't know where tomorrow's first-time terrorist will strike. Fighting terrorism is a bit like fighting infection -- even when it's beaten, you must continue the fight or it will strike again.

Are we agreeing, then, to give the king unfettered privilege to defy the law forever? It's time for every member of Congress to weigh in: Do they believe the president is above the law, or bound by it?

Bush stokes our fears, implying that the only alternative to doing things his extralegal way is to sit by fitfully waiting for terrorists to harm us. We are neither weak nor helpless. A proud, confident republic can hunt down its enemies without trampling legitimate human and constitutional rights.

Ultimately, our best defense against attack -- any attack, of any sort -- is holding fast and fearlessly to the ideals upon which this nation was built. Bush clearly doesn't understand or respect that. Do we?

Do we?


Thursday, December 22, 2005

A Few Questions/Thoughts

When was the last time Bushie boy and his whacked sidekick Cheney treated us to one of their terror alert designed to scare the hell out of the easily manipulated? Think there was one after November 2004?

Ever consider that the reason that we have not been struck by Al-Q on our land is because Bush has done more than enough to cripple this country all on his own, that Al-Q is merely too busy sitting back and laughing at him?

How is it with all that spying Bush has done for all these years, and the huge rewards that have been offered, Bush has failed to capture Bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri, Mullah Omar, and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi?

If Al-Q was such a huge threat and they are all around us in the 50 states as we are told, how is that we have not identified and arrested more than a couple of nit wits since Al-Q caught Bush sleeping at the wheel on 9/11?

This country is wide open to murderers who kill at their whim every day. If we cannot stop regular murderers before they act, why in the world would someone believe that Bush is actually preventing terrorists from acting because we check their email?

There's a sucker born everyday, and here in America most of them seem to work for the media.

If Muslims are so evil and hate us so much, how is that out of the millions who live here, that not one has blown himself up in a theater, or shot a cop, or set FEMA on fire?

On 9/11, 19 murderers managed to kill thousands of Americans for no good reason, so we vanquished what was left of the Al-Q (as if they waited around knowing that we were coming) and their hosts in Afghanistan, and then we decided to gut our treasury, kill thousands of Iraqi citizens, cause the death of our own military personnel by not protecting them, and waste our credibility around the world, while the country that caused it all, Saudi Arabia, still owns us. Make sense?

Could Congress pass a resolution or law authorizing the President to violate the 4th Amendment rights of Americans via spying? Of course not. So who cares if, as Bush argues, the war resolution can be read (which it cannot) to authorize it (an idiotic argument indeed)?

In the end, pray that the 2006 elections bring democrats into control of the House, so that hearing and articles of impeachment can be had.


Merry Merry.... Whatever


Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Iraq's Muslim Mullacracy

Well folks, it looks like that genius Bush has helped make it official: we now have an Iraqi democracy of the same kind that Iran has: mullacracy. And then can we expect Iran and Iraq to form Iranqistan, where everything western will be rejected, and all that which every American has given to this idiotic effort will have gone for naught? What a shame. If there was ever an argument that Intelligent Design had validity, Bush by his very existence disproves it from top to bottom.


Ready for a Change Yet?


"Pentagon anti-terror investigators labeled gay law school groups a "credible threat" of terrorism

by John in DC - 12/20/2005 11:35:00 AM

Jesus f-in Christ. This has gone far beyond the pale. We need to do something now, and in massive numbers. I've been talking with several of the blogs and politicos in the last few days. This is even worse than I thought.

From the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network
, a great organization that was created ten years ago to help overturn the military's anti-gay Don't Ask Don't Tell policy.
According to recent press reports, Pentagon officials have been spying on what they call "suspicious" meetings by civilian groups, including student groups opposed to the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" ban on lesbian, gay and bisexual military personnel. The story, first reported by Lisa Myers and NBC News last week, noted that Pentagon investigators had records pertaining to April protests at the State University of New York at Albany and William Patterson College in New Jersey. A February protest at NYU was also listed, along with the law school's LGBT advocacy group OUTlaw, which was classified as "possibly violent" by the Pentagon. A UC-Santa Cruz "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" protest, which included a gay kiss-in, was labeled as a "credible threat" of terrorism.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) condemned the Pentagon surveillance and monitoring. "The Pentagon is supposed to defend the Constitution, not turn it upside down," said SLDN executive director C. Dixon Osburn. "Students have a first amendment right to protest and Americans have a right to expect that their government will respect our constitutional right to privacy. To suggest that a gay kiss-in is a 'credible threat' is absurd, homophobic and irrational. To suggest the Constitution does not apply to groups with views differing with Pentagon policy is chilling."

In January, the Department of Defense confirmed a report that Air Force officials proposed developing a chemical weapon in 1994 that would turn enemies gay. The proposal, part of a plan from Wright Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, was to develop "chemicals that effect (sic) human behavior so that discipline and morale in enemy units is adversely effected (sic). One distasteful but completely non-lethal example would be strong aphrodisiacs, especially if the chemical also caused homosexual behavior." SLDN also condemned that report, and the Pentagon later said it never intended to develop the program.

"The Pentagon seems to constantly find new and more offensive ways to demean lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people," said Osburn. "First, we were deemed unfit to serve our country, despite winning wars, medals and the praise of fellow service members. Then, our sexual orientation was suggested as a means to destabilize the enemy. Now, our public displays of affection are equated with al Qaeda terrorist activity. It is time for new Pentagon policy consistent with the views of 21st century America."

SLDN announced it plans to submit a Freedom of Information Act request to learn if it or other LGBT organizations have also been monitored by the Pentagon. To date, only a small portion of DoD's total database of information has been made public.
Sources that show the Pentagon keeping tabs on gay groups include this news report:
A secret Pentagon document obtained by NBC News reveals that the military has been spying on what they call "suspicious" civilian meetings - including many "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" protests.

Only eight pages from the four-hundred page document have been released so far. But on those eight pages, Sirius OutQ News discovered that the Defense Department has been keeping tabs NOT just on anti-war protests, but also on seemingly non-threatening protests against the military's ban on gay servicemembers. According to those first eight pages, Pentagon investigators kept tabs on April protests at UC-Santa Cruz, State University of New York at Albany, and William Patterson College in New Jersey. A February protest at NYU was also listed, along with the law school's gay advocacy group "OUTlaw," and was classified as "possibly violent."

All of these protests were against the military's policy excluding gay personnel, and against the presence of military recruiters on campus. The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network says the Pentagon needs to explain why "don't ask, don't tell" protesters are considered a threat."


Torture -- One down, One to go

Anyone else get a creepy feeling watching Shrub seemingly surrender to McCain over the torture issue, feeling it all too chummy for a White House known to be sore losers? Anyone else think Shrub looked entirely too happy, confident, and nonchalant to be properly in character?

Well, it's not because he's been hitting the happy juice again -- or at least not entirely why.

After hearing the media treat McCain-Murtha as the end of the torture issue, I grew even more greatly concerned that that would mean there would be no attention given to the way the Graham-Levin amendment to the same bill effectively makes mincemeat of McCain-Murtha.

You see, now that the House has adopted McCain/Murtha's anti-torture language, it unfortunately remains necessary to protect some of our prisoners from the practical gutting of that via the Graham-Levin Amendment. By chipping away at the right of habeas corpus by restricting the ability of detainees at Guantánamo to have an independent court review of the factual basis for their detention, Graham-Levin would seriously undercut the practical effect of the McCain amendment by barring Guantánamo detainees from applying to any court of law for relief from torture or cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment, and permitting the government to use evidence in court that has been obtained through the use of abusive practices, thus creating perverse incentives for our government to continue to engage in the very misconduct that gave rise to the McCain amendment.

In short, making it impossible for the victims of such practices to present their claims before an impartial judge would make the McCain/Murtha victory a Pyrrhic one.

What this country needs is more serious study of these issues. Instead of being subjected to another Sunday morning hour of Condi Rice, another of Shrub's spying-on-Americans-co-conspirators, claiming that post-9/11, we're in a wholly new, never-been-faced-by-America-before threat situation, our populace needs to hear our legal history in dealing with the concerns raised by enemy combatants -- particularly that we've dealt with this before -- from the Revolution onward -- without having to compromise our basic principles.

Would that our people were widely aware, for instance, that Washington opposed many of the excesses of his opponents in the Revolution when it came to treatment even of hired mercenaries (who before that had been considered not even subject to the small limits on prisoner treatment afforded declared enemies in those days) or that Lincoln faced the same dilemma with the Confederates of not wanting to accord them legitimacy that we face with al Qa'ida yet he relied upon the foundational work of the Lieber-code (aka "Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field," which President Lincoln approved on April 24, 1863 as General Orders No. 100).

Would that they understood what Lincoln did, that the exercise of humanity moves us forward so that they would have no fears of quashing the excesses of a president who relies instead on the twisted illogic of Yoo and Gonzales.

Even if our whole populace has missed this bit of essential education, our Congress should not before voting on it. Thus I call on all to insist that Congress -- particularly the Senate -- vote for and do everything in its power to remove the Graham-Levin from any bill that's moved beyond committee and see instead that it is assigned to the House and Senate Judiciary Committees so that it can be given the careful consideration that such a fundamental change in the law deserves.


Monday, December 19, 2005

Wow - Dubya is sure spying on terrah-rists, isn't he?


FBI watched array of environmental, animal, and poverty groups

Counterterrorism agents at the FBI have conducted numerous surveillance and intelligence-gathering operations that involved, at least indirectly, groups active in causes as diverse as the environment, animal cruelty and poverty relief, newly disclosed agency records show, the NEW YORK TIMES is set to splash in Tuesday's papers...

FBI officials said Monday that their investigators had no interest in monitoring political or social activities and that any investigations that touched on advocacy groups were driven by evidence of criminal or violent activity at public protests and in other settings.

After the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, John Ashcroft, who was then attorney general, loosened restrictions on the FBI's investigative powers. The bureau has used that authority to investigate not only groups with suspected ties to foreign terrorists, but also protest groups suspected of having links to violent or disruptive activities.

But the documents, coming after the Bush administration's confirmation that President Bush had authorized domestic anti-terrorism spying without warrants, prompted charges from civil rights advocates that the government had improperly blurred the line between terrorism and acts of civil disobedience and lawful protest.

One FBI document indicates that agents in Indianapolis planned to conduct surveillance as part of a "Vegan Community Project." Another document talks of the Catholic Workers group's "semi-communistic ideology." A third document indicates the bureau's interest in determining the location of a protest over llama fur planned by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

The documents, provided to The New York Times over the past week, came as part of a series of Freedom of Information Act lawsuits brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, which has sought access to FBI files on about 150 protest and social groups that it says may have been improperly monitored.

"You look at these documents," said Ann Beeson, associate legal director for the ACLU, "and you think wow, we have really returned to the days of J. Edgar Hoover."


More from the AP (advanced):

The American Civil Liberties Union has accused the FBI of misusing terrorism investigators to monitor some domestic political organizations, despite apparently disparate views within the FBI whether some groups supported or committed violent acts, the Associated Press is set to reveal, RAW STORY has learned.

Citing hundreds of pages of heavily-censored documents it obtained from the FBI under the Freedom of Information Act, lawyers for the ACLU described this disputed use of terrorism resources as the latest illustration of intensified surveillance aimed toward Americans. "Using labels like domestic terrorists to describe peaceful protest activity can chill robust political debate in this country," ACLU lawyer Ben Wizner said in New York. The ACLU said it will publish the FBI reports it obtained on its Web site Tuesday.

In one case, government records show the FBI launched a terrorism investigation of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals in Norfolk, Va., despite acknowledgment by one FBI official that, "The FBI does not consider PETA a terrorist organization." The FBI responded that it conducts its investigations appropriately - subject to U.S. laws and Justice Department guidelines. It said the ACLU mischaracterized some passing references to political groups in FBI files to suggest those groups were under investigation; in other cases the FBI confirmed it was acting on tips tying groups to alleged illegal activities. The FBI documents indicate the government launched its terrorism investigation of PETA because the group was "suspected of providing material support and resources to known domestic terrorism organizations," including the Animal Liberation Front and Earth Liberation Front. Advertisement

The ACLU said the FBI documents also suggest that federal terrorism investigators infiltrated the Washington-based American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. One document, sent to an FBI counterterrorism unit in Los Angeles, describes a list of attendees from the group at a conference in Stanford, Calif., to protest sanctions against Iraq in May 2002. Other FBI documents obtained by the ACLU describe efforts in May 2001 by Greenpeace and the Los Angeles-based Catholic Workers Group to disrupt missile tests in California. The FBI said the Catholic Workers Group "advocates a communist distribution of resources."

Oh, man - watch those Catholics...definitely terrorists...Would Would Popie Do? Wear Prada, I guess.



Father leaves kids in freezing car for hours

And where are the church people who would have these children be born, and then treated this way? Hmmmm? Why haven't the church ladies of good old Christian, KKK/Neonazi Greenwood, Indiana, stepped forward to take these kids to their homes?

Oh that's right...they only care about the babies while in the womb. Silly me.


The FCAT = Freaking Corrupt and Tainted

You can thank Neil Bush for this (and of course Gov(TX)/Pres Bush and Gov(FL) Bush for allowing it to explode to what "No Child Left Behind" is today.

From today's Miami Herald:

FCAT can destroy some students' futures

José and Franklin live next door to each other. Both are 18-year-olds who grew up in two-parent homes. José's parents enrolled him at Gulliver Academy while Franklin's parents decided he would enter public schools. As teens, both were active in their community and churches. José and Franklin were honors students, computer whizzes and boasted of 3.5 GPAs. Both young men aspired to become as successful as their parents.

After completing his mid-terms and final exams, José earned a 3.5 GPA, 30 credits and had decent scores on the ACT and SAT exams. José planned on attending Florida International University.

Franklin earned a 3.5 GPA after completing his mid-terms and finals. He, too, accrued 30 credits and made decent scores on the ACT and SAT exams. Unlike a private-school student, he was required to take the FCAT exam. He took the reading portion of the test five times, but did not pass. As a last resort, Franklin hoped to score a 14 on both the math and reading portions of the ACT, which was an alternative score to the FCAT. In the interim, the state raised the score to 15, and sadly Franklin only scored a 14.

Why didn't Franklin pass the FCAT? It is a flawed instrument that does not measure intelligence. It contains hundreds of ambiguous questions that frustrate children and provide more than one answer that could be correct on every question. It costs the state $120 million annually to administer. Why do we use it? Neil Bush, brother of our governor and president, owns the software to the FCAT and earns millions annually from Florida's state budget.

On graduation day, both young men donned their caps and gowns and walked across the stage. José proudly displayed his high-school diploma. Sadly, Franklin had only a certificate of attendance to show for his 13-year academic career. His dreams of attending college were shattered. He was confused, his spirit was broken and his psyche was damaged.

Franklin and his parents confided in me. Franklin was highly motivated, bright and caring and had what it takes to become a successful contributor to society. My first task was to engage a psychiatrist to work with Franklin. I enrolled him at a private school. The school analyzed his transcript, qualifications and gave him a series of tests. He passed his exams and received a Florida high-school diploma. Franklin's psyche was intact, and his confidence renewed. Franklin is attending Miami Dade College and doing well.

This scenario is repeated every day in Florida. Students like Franklin experience the effects of an educational policy that, at best, is aimed at confounding the confidence of our youth. At their worst, FCAT policies underscore the rising tide of inequity that currently has a stranglehold on the futures of our children. If we look honestly at this comparison, the superficial flaws become apparent. Current policy saddles public-school students with rigid, strenuous requirements not levied upon students attending private schools.

We lose hundreds of thousands of students to private schools each year. When public schools lose children, they lose money. We cannot afford to idly watch the dismantling of public schools as a consequence of high-stakes testing such as the FCAT. The oppressiveness of such a policy will ultimately be noticed in the swelling ranks of poverty, unemployment, crime and imprisonment. If we are to renew the hopes of our children for the future, we must not fail them today.

FREDERICA S. WILSON, Democratic Whip and state Sen., Dist. 33, Miami


Two reasons to do the happy dance:

Ruling in Cuyahoga could gut Ohio ban on same-sex nuptial

(Bwaahhaahhaa - What Would Quicksand Jeezus Do???)


Report: Banner Year For Gay Rights

Yippee Skippee.....dum de dum de dum de dum.


More Billary Rod-Ham Clitten Pandering

This woman is relentless: instead of coping with the problems in her home state; problems that include massive layoffs from Good, Wholesome, American companies and the just-started Transportation Strike in Queens (NY Times), Billary Clitten is in blasted New Orleans touring the Katrina Damage (

She's so focused on trying to get that national spotlight that she's no longer doing her job.

She has a surprise coming: New York does not appreciate her behavior - and I'm about to help give her seat to someone else (but first, an exam calls).

(and, yes, I do realize the problem is outside her sphere of legislative influence - but the reality is her choice STILL makes her look like she's out of touch, asleep at the switch, or overtly incompetent)


Sunday, December 18, 2005

Solid evidence of "moderate" failure: my own story further south

I just read this in the Wa Po (registration required, it seems) .

That article is a story about a lesbian couple who left their home for the same reasons me and my life-mate left Ohio. That article is the very same story for a hell of a lot of same-sex couples today, in the Land of the Free, USA.

Whatever perspective one wants to embrace, the issues around medical and financial security are not "radicalism" and have absolutely nothing to do with the far "Looney Left." Such issues have everything to do with the basis of living as a citizen in a decent, civilized society.

Here's a taste of what I mean - of what Eric and I, ourselves, lived in relation to our own medical and fiscal security. For the reasons mentioned in this article (and restated below), we now live in New York State.

It wasn't new to either woman that they weren't entitled to all kinds of benefits that straight, married couples enjoyed: No leave from work to care for a sick partner. No access to a partner's Social Security payments when he or she dies. No right to live together in a nursing home.

Barbara and Tibby never had those rights and never made a fuss about it. Having been raised in what they describe as the patriarchal, deeply conservative climate of Salt Lake City in the 1940s and '50s, they expected little as women and even less as lesbians. But now there was no room to be silent, to not make a fuss. An aneurysm in Barbara's brain, first detected in 2001, had changed all that. As the Affirmation of Marriage Act made its way through the Virginia General Assembly, Barbara became gripped day and night by images of herself unconscious, on a respirator, with someone other than Tibby beside her, making decisions for her.

"If this goes through," she warned Tibby, "we're outta here."

No, no, no, Tibby replied. This is where we live, this is our community. Tibby began researching the law, and asked Barbara not to tell anyone in Fredericksburg that they might move. "I thought the minute we say something, it's like a train that starts to leave," she says.

But there was no changing Barbara's mind. And, eventually, there was no changing Tibby's, either. Supporters of the law insist that it isn't intended to take away anyone's rights, but to affirm traditional values and an existing law that already banned gay marriage. But no one Tibby consulted -- legislators, lawyers, activists -- could tell her what judges might do with medical directive documents and wills under the new law. The legislation would have to be challenged in court before anyone could know for sure.

If you are, know, love, care about, or even just-remotely-give-a-hoot-about a GLBT person somewhere in the USA, you need to read this article linked above and think about the kind of person you are - and for whom you cast your vote.

As far as those arguing "Evolution, not Revolution;" who use the term "Moderate" and "Liberal" interchangeably; who argue for the endless date-rape of "bipartisanship" and "common ground" and mutual solutions: this article is where I, a member of "The Radical Looney Left," stand my ground and say, "This moment is the last straw: I'm done." This ability for a President, his Party, and his Religion to turn people into legal "sub-humans" happens with the support of people like Billary and LIEberman, all in the name of a "moderate" and "bipartisan" sell out.

And this is the point where, as I watch that asshole who wears the mantle of "President" flap his lips on the television; as I watch the very man who pushed (1) these amendments noted above - these amendments that forced the two women in the article from their home, (2) irresponsible tax cuts, (3) deficits, (4) fake data for a fake war, (5) an environmental agenda that is anything but, (6) an economic policy about as useful as the environmental agenda, and (7) criminal surveillance against American Citizens without due process, that I say, for myself, "Enough!" Should you come back to me and argue Moderation and Common Ground with this man and his Religion and his Political Party?

Drop my number from your speed dial.

Tear out the page with my address and number - do not send me holiday cards.

Lose my E-mail.

And don't say "hello" to me as you pass on the street.

Quite simply - if you are focused on such superficially-reasonable views to help this guy get more of what he's already got? I have no use for you . . . and you most assuredly have no use for me, either.

Remember this, too: history has a way of repeating itself.

Senator Douglas, in trying to avert the Civil War, sought precisely such a compromise as many Dems seek today with such greedy, corrupt people as have power today. Douglass authored The Missouri compromise (click here for Malin Hodder's STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS; scroll down to 233) which was a "Moderate Solution."

The end result of the Moderate Missouri Compromise was, in Douglas's own words, printed in the link above, that he "...could ride from Boston to Chicago by the light of his [my] burning effigy by night and in sight of his [my] hanging effigy by day. For the first time in his [my] life he [I] was unable to pacify the mob that greeted him [me] upon his [my] return to Chicago, " (again, section 233 , scroll to appropriate section number).

Or, to summarize in the greatest brevity, "fuck this crap: like the folks in Chicago on Douglas's return, I refuse to take it anymore."


A Political Revolution is in Order

Bush declined to discuss the domestic eavesdropping program in a television interview, but he joined his aides in saying that the government acted lawfully and did not intrude on citizens' rights.

"Decisions made are made understanding we have an obligation to protect the civil liberties of the American people," Bush said on "The NewsHour With Jim Lehrer."

Washington Post
December 2005

Citizens of the U.S.S.R. are guaranteed inviolability of the person. No person may be placed under arrest except by decision of a court or with the sanction of a procurator.

The inviolability of the homes of citizens and privacy of correspondence are protected by law.

Constitution of the USSR
December 1936

Posted by billmon at 12:25 AM"


More on Brokeback Mountain

The Advocate: Annie Proulx tells the story behind "Brokeback Mountain"

New York Times
: Masculinity and Its Discontents in Marlboro Country


Faith, Women And Philanthropy: An Opportunity


(This talk was presented at the National Conversation on Faith, Women and Philanthropy, San Francisco, CA on December 6, 2005.)

Faith, women and philanthropy – looking at how they can come together to address the needs of women and children in need - is critical. To even use these three words – faith, women and philanthropy – in the same sentence, indicates that we are living in unprecedented times and have been given a tremendous opportunity. There are always barriers to everything we do, but how we perceive the challenge – positively, not
negatively – I believe, is the key...


Friday, December 16, 2005

CQ: Patriot Act Conference Agreement Stalls in Senate

CQ Today Midday Update

FRIDAY, DEC. 16, 2005 – 2:27 P.M.
Edited by Joe Warminsky
Patriot Act Conference Agreement Stalls in Senate

A nearly unanimous bloc of Senate Democrats, joined by a handful of Republicans, blocked consideration of a bill Friday that would reauthorize the 16 expiring provisions of the Patriot Act, leaving in limbo the sections of the law that are set to expire Dec. 31....


What does the United States stand for?

Jack of Random Fate and The Moderate Voice has posed this question.


Did You Know That This Can Happen in America?

From the Cleveland, Ohio Gay People's Chronicle:

Man jailed for breaking a nonexistent law is cleared
by Eric Resnick

Warren, Ohio--A gay man who spent four months in jail for breaking a nonexistent anti-gay sex law has had his name cleared by an appeals court.

Keith Phillips’ conviction of “importuning” was overturned by the Eleventh District Court of Appeals in a unanimous decision December 12.

“In a criminal case, due process requires that the conduct underlying a finding of guilt actually be a crime,” Judge Cynthia W. Rice wrote for the court’s three-page opinion. “Here, it was not.”

Judges William O’Neill and Diane Grendell agreed, reversing the 2003 Warren Municipal Court finding that sent Phillips, then 19, to jail.

The city of Warren had prosecuted Phillips for importuning--asking someone of the same sex for sex, if the person asked was offended--seven months after it was declared unconstitutional by the Ohio Supreme Court...

Cross-Posted at The Moderate Voice.


Thursday, December 15, 2005

Folks, I would love to be proven wrong, but... it now stands, Hillary could - in public - shoot a doctor who performs legal abortions, and - in public - chop off the penis of a gay man and...




Vote Now - Tonight's the last night

Pam's House Blend is in the running for best lgbt blog. Voting ends tonight.


If only the Supreme Court had done the right thing in 2000.....

From Mario....
All the votes were counted and Al Gore is declared President.

President Gore holds daily anti terrorism meetings with D Clarke........9-11 never happens.

President Gore uses the budget surplus to rebuild Americas crumbling infrastructure.....creating millions of high paying jobs....adding even more money to the tax base.

Mr Gore uses the new tax revenues to put new computers in every classroom in the US....math scores zoom....America once again becomes the center of the technological world......the economy booms even more.
New energy technologies are invented...our reliance on middle east oil ends.

Defeated candidate George Bush gets his own reality show on Fox.... The show will be named.... Whats in it? Bush is given a mystery alcoholic drink and he has 2 hours to drive around Crawford and find the ingredients.

Rush Limbaugh is arrested on the corner of Military trail and Okkeechobee Blvd with a cigar box full of Oxy.

Dick Cheney drops dead from a heart attack in the Halliburton Board room after receiving oral favors from a male intern.

Using the plan put in place by Bill Clinton.....President Gore finances an internal revolt by the people of Iraq.....Saddam is outed as dictator.....he then testifies in a tribunal.
that Rumsfeld, Pearle, Wolfowitz, Baker, and Bush the elected supplied him with chemical weapons.

It is learned that Ann Coulter was nothing more than a prank.....she / he is really Andy Kauffman in drag.

Joe Lieberman commits suicide after it is learned that he was Strom thurmans illegitimate love child.

.....Wouldnt it be nice!



WP: Columnist Robert Novak Says Bush Knows Who Leaked Plame's Name

Washington Post:

Syndicated columnist Robert D. Novak, who has repeatedly declined to discuss his role in disclosing the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame, said in a speech this week that he is certain President Bush knows who his mystery administration source is. Novak said Tuesday that the public and press should be asking the president about the official rather than pressing journalists who received the information...


Tuesday, December 13, 2005

For all those who've scratched their heads in wonder at Repug persistent loyalty to Shrub...

... maybe everything is not what it seems.


What GWB thinks of the Constitution

According to our friend Karen Zipdrive at Pulp Friction, here's what President George W. Bush REALLY thinks of our Constitution.


Monday, December 12, 2005

Lies, lies, lies...

This is the text of a full-page ad in today's Indianapolis Star:

Whatever happened to the constitutional guarantee of equal justice under law? The very notion that a homosexual who suffers a violent crime is somehow worth more than a former homosexual who suffers the same crime is absurd. But that's exactly what the current "hate crime" legislation in Congress will do...elevate one over the other based solely on one's sexual preference.

Such a law means that the two straight men who killed Matthew Shepard would receive a harsher sentence than the two homosexual men who raped, tortured, and killed 13-year old Jesse Dirkhising. There is no moral difference between these two crimes, but under new federal "hate crimes" legislation, one would be punished more severly than the other!

Something is terribly wrong when 11 people peacefully protesting a homosexual event in Philadelphia are arrested and jailed, but activist homosexuals disrupting a pro-family event in Maine are not. Something is terribly wrong when a Boston parent is arrested and jailed for merely objecting to pro-homosexual material being forced on his kindergarten child at school, but hundreds of homosexuals there using sound trucks and blocing the entrance to a church conference hosted by former homosexuals are not. Something is terribly wrong when federal law will make the punishment for one violent crime harsher than another, merely because of a victim's sexual preference.

Something must be done to protect equal justice! Call your Senators before they vote. Tell them the only true justice in American is EQUAL justice under law.

(Indiana Action Network's Jerame Davis has a photo of the ad up on the web.)

I hardly know where to begin except to hope fervently that Bayh and Lugar will not let those swayed by it to sway them and that Hoosiers capable of telling truth from lies and deception will call Bayh and Lugar themselves (and those not from Hoosierland will call their own U.S. senators on the assumption that this ad will play elsewhere and that, even if it doesn't, that the coalition that supported it will be working hard to defeat the hate crimes legislation at issue.)

The ad's authors ignore the fact that everyone, even so-called "ex-gay" hate-mongering trolls, has a sexual orientation and that the proposed federal legislation thus protects all suffering hate crimes motivated by bias against that sexual orientation -- real or perceived (as if there is a big problem of anti-het or even anti-trying-to-fool-self-and-others-that-one-is-het hate crimes and not that anti-LGBT hate crimes are the highest per capita of the populations studied by the U.S. Department of Justice's research arm, the Institute for Justice.)

The people behind the ad routinely and knowingly break the law in an attempt to deny others their rights. The protesters they try to paint as equal counterparts did not. The ad's whiny proponents, by trying to cloud this difference, thus expose themselves/their protests as the actions of the hate-mongering thugs they are instead of the heirs of the great traditions of civil disobedience in pursuit of human rights they shamelessly and apishly mock.

Sexual orientation-inclusive hate crimes laws do not punish people because of their sexual orientation, they punish people who punish people because of their sexual orientation.

They recognize that the attacks are more serious than the base crime -- that they are terroristic in nature, targeting not just those attacked but the entire population to which the attacker believes that person belongs; are attempts to intimidate the entire group out of free exercise of their fundamental and civil rights; that they have a psychological component that makes recovery from them much lengthier and painful than for those suffering the same base crime sans a bias motive; that the criminals typically escalate in their hate criminality unless the state makes it clear to them that it takes the bias motivation seriously; and that the crimes themselves, particularly those involving physical attacks, are typically more serious, involving torture, mutilation, and other evidence of rage enacted on the victims' bodies -- and that it is only right, not to mention usual in our system of criminal law, that more serious crimes are accorded more serious sentences.

They recognize, too, that taking motive into account in criminal law is not just normal, it's considered essential in determining whether or what sort of crime something is. It is thus not a constitutionally impermissable punishment of expression. It just recognizes that expression can be properly considered evidentiary.

The ad's authors are well aware that substituting "sexual preference" for "sexual orientation" belittles and trivializes that sexual orientation is complex and so deeply entwined in a person's being that the risk of damage by attempting to change it is so high that merely to aid in someone's trying constitutes an ethical breach for health professionals. One prefers one flavor of ice cream over another one likes. One is gay or het or wherever else on the Kinsey diagraph one is at the core of one's being.

Shame on them for their belittling and trivializing and for all the other lies and deceptions in the ad. Shame on Lugar and Bayh and any other senator if they do anything more with the calls it generates than educating the callers as to how they were deceived.


Andy Borowitz Envisions the White House screening "Brokeback Mountain"

Borowitz Report (Satire):


In what the official White House spokesman today called "a regrettable mistake," the White House had a private screening last night of the critically acclaimed gay western, "Brokeback Mountain."

One day after the ill-fated screening, spokesman Scott McClellan said that the White House had launched a "full investigation" to find out how "Brokeback," which features actors Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal as gay ranch hands, found its way into the White House screening room...


Sunday, December 11, 2005

Religion and politics should never mix

"Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks is the Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth

Different freedoms, or why religion and politics should never mix

Credo by Jonathan Sacks

THE election of David Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party has quickened the pulse of British politics, and though I believe profoundly that religion and politics should never mix, there are times when it is important to say something religious about the political process itself.

In 1996, when one party had been in power for almost a generation, I asked a civil servant in an unguarded moment which he thought more dangerous for a nation: the coming into office of a party most of whose members had no experience of government, or the lack of a credible opposition. Without hesitation he chose the second. Politics lives, he said, on the existence of alternatives, the clash of opinions, the cut and thrust of debate. Without that, democracy dies.

In a flash I realised that he had clarified for me the profound difference between religion and politics and why neither must ever invade the territory of the other.

Democratic politics — the worst system ever invented apart from all the others — is more than the rule of the majority. That, as Alexis de Tocqueville rightly said, can lead to the tyranny of the majority and the loss of rights on the part of minorities. Its virtues are that it allows for the non-violent resolution of conflict. It makes possible a change in government without revolution or civil war. Most importantly, it safeguards the free expression of dissent.

Politics turns into virtue what religions often see as a vice — the fact that we do not all think alike, that we have conflicting interests, that we see the world through different eyes. Politics knows what religion sometimes forgets, that the imposition of truth by force and the suppression of dissent by power is the end of freedom and a denial of human dignity. When religion enters the political arena, we should repeat daily Bunyan’s famous words: “Then I saw that there was a way to Hell, even from the gates of Heaven.”

This is easily said, but behind liberal democracy lies a long and bloody past. Twice in the history of the West, religion discovered its inadequacy as a means of conflict resolution. The first occurred in the first century CE, when Jews began their disastrous rebellion against Rome. It failed because of internecine rivalry between Jews themselves. The result was the destruction of the Second Temple and an exile that lasted almost 2,000 years. It was Jewry’s worst self-inflicted tragedy.

The second took place in Christian Europe between the Reformation in 1517 and the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648. For more than a century Europe was convulsed by religious war, Christian fighting Christian as Jew had once fought Jew. Out of these experiences, first Jews, then Christians, eventually learnt to separate religion from politics, influence from power, the noble dream from the willingness to compromise that alone allows us to live graciously with those with whom we disagree.

It may seem odd to say that the most important feature of liberal democracy is its modesty. Humility is a virtue not always associated with politicians. Yet it is built into the system. The secular democratic state has no ambitions to proclaim the truth, fulfil the metaphysical longings of the soul, or pass judgment on the great questions of ethics. It is there to help us get along with one another, making our several contributions to the common good. It is the best way yet discovered of allowing us all to feel heard, our views considered if not always accepted, and of constructing a society we see as tolerable if not ideal.

There is something noble about this self-limitation. Liberal democracy does what few great religions have ever achieved. It makes space for difference. It honours the person regardless of his or her beliefs. It allows societies to negotiate change without catastrophe. It teaches us the difficult arts of listening to our opponents and — in Isaiah’s phrase — “reasoning together”. These are modest virtues but necessary ones.

We are living in an age in which, not just in Britain but throughout the world, many people are disillusioned with secular politics, and are turning to religion instead. In itself that is a blessing. Religious faith is our noblest effort to understand ourselves and our place in the universe. The expansive air of the spirit redeems the narrowness of the material world. But to expect it to solve political problems is to invite disaster. Religion becomes political at its peril, and ours."


I am so ashamed of my country.

Binyam Mohammed, 27, says he spent nearly three years in the CIA's network of 'black sites'. In Morocco he claims he underwent the strappado torture of being hung for hours from his wrists, and scalpel cuts to his chest and penis and that a CIA officer was a regular interrogator.

You won't see this story in a US news site.

Where's the vomitorium?


Saturday, December 10, 2005

Must We Delay?

Ten Mind-Numbing Quotes By Tom Delay

1) "So many minority youths had volunteered that there was literally no room for patriotic folks like myself." --Tom DeLay, explaining at the 1988 GOP convention why he and vice presidential nominee Dan Quayle did not fight in the Vietnam War

2) "Now tell me the truth boys, is this kind of fun?" -Tom Delay, to three young hurricane evacuees from New Orleans at the Astrodome in Houston, Sept. 9, 2005

3) "I AM the federal government." -Tom DeLay, to the owner of Ruth's Chris Steak House, after being told to put out his cigar because of federal government regulations banning smoking in the building, May 14, 2003

4) "We're no longer a superpower. We're a super-duper power." -Tom DeLay, explaining why America must topple Saddam Hussein in 2002 interview with Fox News

5) "Nothing is more important in the face of a war than cutting taxes." -Tom DeLay, March 12, 2003

6) "Guns have little or nothing to do with juvenile violence. The causes of youth violence are working parents who put their kids into daycare, the teaching of evolution in the schools, and working mothers who take birth control pills." -Tom DeLay, on causes of the Columbine High School massacre, 1999

7) "A woman can take care of the family. It takes a man to provide structure. To provide stability. Not that a woman can't provide stability, I'm not saying that... It does take a father, though." -Tom DeLay, in a radio interview, Feb. 10, 2004

8) "I don't believe there is a separation of church and state. I think the Constitution is very clear. The only separation is that there will not be a government church." -Tom DeLay

9) "Emotional appeals about working families trying to get by on $4.25 an hour [the minimum wage in 1996] are hard to resist. Fortunately, such families do not exist." -Tom DeLay, during a debate in Congress on increasing the minimum wage, April 23, 1996

10) "I am not a federal employee. I am a constitutional officer. My job is the Constitution of the United States, I am not a government employee. I am in the Constitution." -Tom DeLay, in a CNN interview, Dec. 19, 1995


Indiana's human rights record graded as D+

Indianapolis Star:

Indiana's human rights record, based in part on its poverty policies and its stand on the death penalty, came in last among Midwestern states in a ranking by the Heartland Alliance for Human Needs and Human Rights.

The Chicago-based group, which describes its mission as advocating for people who might otherwise "fall through the cracks," rated eight states in four human rights areas, using an index to arrive at a letter grade in each area. Overall, Indiana received a D+ and was in eighth place....


Friday, December 09, 2005

Do Any Garth and Trisha Fans Read Julien's List?

The scoop from the heartland:

On Tulsa tv news this evening, they reported that Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood have purchased a marriage license. The local rule on marriage licenses is that they must be used within ten days.


Never give up, Never give in

It's only been a month since Texas passed its marriage amendment.

As I'd gotten used to making education and voter ID calls to Texans in the weeks prior to its passage, I didn't want to stop -- so I didn't. The goal of these things is really to halt the discussion about equal access to civil marriage -- our opponents knowing no less than our organizers that talking about it helps our side (we're the ones with the rational arguments and right on our side, after all), not theirs. It seems foolish to me to cooperate with my own oppression by acquiescing to my enemies' attempts to impose silence upon me.

So every day I have been calling local Texas tourism-related businesses (there are a seeming endless number of them and I've barely made a dent in my list), talking about how Texas just advertised itself as a place where the majority of its people are too stupid to tell the difference between religious and civil marriage and voted to deny equal access to the latter with the intent of closing out the former to same-sex couples with the effect of not changing a thing regarding religious marriage -- the First Amendment still applies and gay people can still marry religiously in those religious sects that married them before the election -- but shut not just same-sex couples out of civil marriage, but themselves to boot!

I've told them that "Come visit Texas, home of the stupidest and most backward people in America" probably isn't all that great a slogan for their convention and tourism industries.

When I get ones that say, "It's not my fault, I voted against it", I ask how hard did they work to educate those who they might've reached who did vote for it -- that, unless they can say something like, "until I bled", it's nice but... I say that their inaction has stuck them with the amendment and, unless they choose not to be Texans and denounce the thing on the way out, they're painted with its nasty brush, fair or not, and their relative inaction has earned them the even harder work of repealing it.

I reminded them that minorities are not responsible for their rights -- majorities hold that power over them, so the duty falls to those in the majority populations to take charge of changing their own -- that I'm willing to help them, give them background data and strategic advice and maybe even a few ground troops but, beyond that, it's up to them.

The conversations with those proud of their accomplishment are another thing altogether. I focus on that their win is the beginning of the fight, not the end of it, and that, if they want to know how ugly and backwards they're going to look to their descendants, they should look long into the mirror that reflects their faces of hate.

I'll have to put up a "Texas, the Great Hate State" website next...


About Brokeback Mountain

NPR Fresh Air: Movie Reviews By David Edelstein
'Brokeback' Taboos in Big Sky Country

The new film Brokeback Mountain, directed by Ang Lee, stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger. Based on a short story by Annie Proulx, it describes the relationship between two young men in the West in the 1960s.


Indy City-Council President Steve Talley to Back Gay Rights Plan

Indianapolis Star:

City-Council President Steve Talley revealed Thursday he would back an effort to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation, reversing his position and giving gay rights supporters a vital boost.

Talley, a Democrat, was one of 18 council members who voted against the human rights ordinance in April in a decision that crossed party lines. Sponsors Jackie Nytes, a Democrat, and Scott Keller, a Republican, reintroduced the proposal last month. Talley became the second vote they have gained of the four needed to ensure the ban passes...


My Denominational Affiliation Inches Closer to Me....

Thanks to the WCGLBTJ, I've seen this article:

Conservative Jews Ponder Ordination of Gays

ORANGEBURG - The rights of gays in the Conservative Jewish movement are being debated by congregants as their tradition’s rabbinic rule-making body prepares to make a judgment on the issue early next year.

Paula Mack Drill, associate rabbi of the Orangetown Jewish Center, thought the timing was right for her congregation to have an open discussion on the matter.

"I actually spoke about homosexuality on the second day of Rosh Hashana, and there were people who were uncomfortable, which I think is normal and OK because we were looking to open dialogue," she said. "There were also more than 50 e-mails from people, most of whom were saying, ’Thank you. That’s what leadership is.’ "



Thursday, December 08, 2005

'Bean completely blows a gasket

Earlier today, I discovered I had been linked to another site in relation to my post below.

Here is a comment I found.

for his complete comments, pls link to his townhall comments; mr prelutsky is a jew, not self-hating, and certainly not an anti-semite; bad form not to include the parts about his jewishness; thanks for the link, though; merry chrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr; oh, i just can't say it;

bob terrill, ft collins, colo

What Bob did not know is I am already aware of Prelutsky's comrades, cohorts, and criminal companions - indeed, not only of him, but of his fellow LA resident Dan Weiner and others of that ilk.

You know - the conservative Jewish commentator Dan Weiner? Raised in New York State by Socialist parents? Hung out with the poet Jack Kerouac?

You know - Dan Weiner? Surely you know Dan Weiner?!?!

Oh shit - I keep forgetting he changed his name to michEAl* Savage. And michEAl* Savage, yet another bastard, rather portrays himself as Pro-Christian. In fact, I've listend to his show: he actually claims to be Christian.

No surprise: we Jews don't want him. And if you find Dan's story too hard to believe, Google it. Seriously - that story is out there and documented.

I did have a response to Bob, though, and I thought to share it here. The reason I did is because Julien thinks it's fun when I blow a gasket. And, well, I kinda blew a gasket.

I rather think it's fun when I blow a gasket, too.

So here is what I said to our Red State Friend who felt the need to defend Prelutsky.


Actually, as a rather active Jew for Judaism and one of the authors of one of the articles cited above, I feel profoundly confident our dear friend Prelutsky is, rather quietly, a Jew for Jesus - as evidenced by, among other things, the essays by a real Jewish blogger Dovbear (you have fingers - google it) as well as Prelutskys own Free RepubliKKK Essay, "Some of my Best Friends Use to be Jews."

Sorry babe-o-lah: better luck tarring us with the Messiah brush next time.

Oh - and for the record? Us liberals, fags, Kikes, lesbos, Hindus, whackos and bozos ain't interested in turning Christmas into a nothing for the rest of you folk.

We want you to have your holiday and tree and Christmas Ham. We want you to have the whole damn shebang: have at it, welcome to it, and be as happy as you can - even down to getting crocked on eggnog and playing footsie under the dinner table (and if that is too much Holiday Joy, spend the whole day at Mass instead): the long and short of it is we Jews and Hindus and Buddhists and Taoists and Athiests just plain don't care how you want to spend your Holiday - as long as you have yourself a great time.

We just don't want to be forced to pretend we participate, either. That whole First Amendment thing? Constitution? The line about Congress passing no law either favoring our outlawing religion?

Check out the language for yourself, should your memory be short - or should you suffer the delusion that document was written just for you:

Is the language clear enough for you? If so, can you see the Non-Christian point?

Or are you folks in Colorado simply too busy trying to cover up that little Church-State scandal ya got brewing at the Academy in Colorado Springs.

You remember what I mean, right? Or do I need to refresh your memory? Actually, let me bother to make the effort outright for you - so here:

Prelutsky is no Jew - no more so than the men chronicled in the book "Hitler's Jewish Soldiers" or, for that matter, those locals of your own who behaved badly - and did so in a way that allowed their behavior to be documented. Prelutsky is no more Jewish than either - save in name alone.

Bob, wanting to be treated as an equal in America is not asking too much - especially in a Democracy. Wanting to be treated as an equal in America and taking a productive role in one's community to boot (in my case, by embracing a medical career) and STILL being treated otherwise is intolerable: some like Prelutsky may not only bend over and take the insult, they cheer the offender on.

I have a bit more self-respect: I'm saying no. Right here, right now - to your face.

And, despite that . . . .

I sincerely hope you have a happy holiday - of whatever stripe you choose to have. Seriously: all my caustic New York personality aside, I seriously mean it. Given we know what holiday suits you, I hope you have an excellent celebration at your home: I know you will be as disinterested in sharing mine as I clearly am in sharing yours.

And thanks to the First Amendment, we both have that right: let's keep it that way, shall we?

'Bean, contributor - Julien's List

Not a bad job for gasket blowing, eh?

* Addendum and correction

Green Knight pointed out I meant Michael Savage. Given the brain-boner scale of my error, I thought to, once again, give tribute to Pam and her House Blend Troll of the same name who, on one occasion, used the rather interesting spelling above in self-reference.


Real Live Anti-Liberal Anti-Semitism: proof Goldberg should rectally auto-copulate

I - am - so - pissed.

My people (Liberals, Jews, Jewish Liberals) are under overt attack.

Those on the Jewish Democratic side arguing we should be playing ball with the Lieberman crowd for the better long-term were wrong. And so were those on the conservative side who said "conservatives are good for Israel."


The whole, horrible "Jews are Bad" Mel Gibson movie aside, the Right's truly ugly, racist, fascist, intolerant face has been out of the mainstream view for a while.

But not anymore.

O'Riley sort of cracked the lid that particular Pandora's box a few weeks back, as we all know - but now someone finally, officially, made the Anti-Semetic slur and then threw the rabid conservative monster in the box out into the open for all to see.

And what will happen?

Expect Lieberman to promote a resolution in support of Christmas. Will Clitten follow with proposed legislation that the resolution be enforced at gunpoint?

Speaking for myself, as I am indeed a very liberal, very observant Jew in a more traditional Jewish movement: Merry Christmas to my blogfolk - you are, after all, welcome to your Holiday in this country, as I am to mine.

But, if I may kindly ask, at least return the sentiment by not sending me a blasted Christmas card!

The issue at hand is NOT "A Christian Nation," as the bastard who authored the article above suggests.

The issue at hand is simple common decency: the same decency I offer the folks here (at least the ones I like!); the same decency I think I, the Liberal Kyke Faggot, have the right to ask in return.

Shalom, Babe-o-lahs!


Religiously-Permitted Abortion

JTA Breaking News:

The Conservative movement passed a resolution Tuesday affirming a woman's right to a halachically-permitted abortion.

But the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, meeting at its biennial convention in Boston, did not accept an amendment dealing with judicial nominees. The resolution on reproductive choice calls on the USCJ to 'register its opinion on court cases and administrative agency actions (and any government action)' that might impact a woman's access to an abortion that she and her rabbi have deemed in accordance with Jewish law. An amendment that would have added 'or judicial nominations' to the sentence was struck down.

The USCJ also passed resolutions on hunger relief, family violence, U.N. treatment of Israel, divestment from Israel, religious freedom in the workplace and immigration reform.



Every so often, the issue of the cowed, kow-towing Democratic Sycophant is put into vivid contrast with the Scrappy, Energetic, Punch-Yer-Eye-Out liberal labor movement of yesteryear. Via Daily Koss and Think Progress - this exchange took place in Washington over the last 24 hours:

Lieberman, yesterday: "It is time for Democrats who distrust President Bush to acknowledge that he will be commander in chief for three more critical years and that in matters of war we undermine presidential credibility at our nation's peril."

Murtha, today: "Undermining his credibility? What has he said that would give him credibility?"


So, when will the rest, like my own senator, Billary Clitten, learn the Murtha lesson?


Craig Crawford‘s 1600: Standing Behind the Troops

Dec. 5, 2005 – Page 3278

Craig Crawford‘s 1600: Standing Behind the Troops

Wartime presidents have every right to stand before the troops when they want to boost the nation’s will to win. Images of men and women in uniform cheering their commander in chief excite the military and give more than a few civilians a lump in the throat.

But George W. Bush is on the verge of abusing this popular venue. The White House repeatedly uses the armed forces as a prop for partisan attacks. And its extensive use of military settings makes you wonder if the Bush team is afraid to risk having an event with average Americans who are not handpicked by White House advance teams. Given the president’s declining support among civilians, it would seem wise for him to talk directly to them.

Perhaps the most ridiculous — and alarming — reason for not doing so was voiced by a loyal friend of the Bush family, former Sen. Alan K. Simpson. “Because this is about war, and regular civilians don’t understand war,” the Wyoming Republican told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews after Bush’s speech at the Naval Academy last week.

The Bush camp has other, more sophisticated, reasons for avoiding civilians. For starters, administration officials do not want to acknowledge that regular Americans are anything but wildly supportive. Chancing the spectacle of a heckler, or even a respectful challenge from an audience member, might dispel such a notion.

Bush’s unveiling of his “Strategy for Victory” in Annapolis included several remarks intended to set the story line that only Washington knuckleheads oppose him. “Decisions about troop levels will be driven by the conditions on the ground in Iraq and the good judgment of our commanders — not by artificial timetables set by politicians in Washington,” he declared.

Several times the president strove to label criticism as nothing but a Washington parlor game. “When you’re risking your life to accomplish a mission, the last thing you want to hear is that mission being questioned in our nation’s capital,” he told the midshipmen.

“There may be a lot of heated rhetoric in Washington, D.C.,” he observed. “We should not fear the debate in Washington.”

Again and again, Bush sought to create the impression that no one outside the Beltway questions his wisdom. Never mind that most Americans — not just Washington politicians — are telling pollsters they have little faith in the president’s handling of the war. And they want to know when the troops are coming home.

No matter what the risks might be, Bush must regain the personal bond he once had with Americans who now see him as an imperious boss avoiding his workers.

Or maybe he is so sure of his path in Iraq that he does not care. That was the blunt-spoken Simpson’s take on “Hardball” last week: “He’s sticking his face right in the face of the American people, saying, ‘You may not like this. We’re here, and by God, we’re going to stay the course, and we’re going to be here as long as I’m your commander in chief and, in essence, you can stuff it if you don’t like it.’ ”

If that is the president’s attitude, maybe he should avoid civilians.

The Danger of Going off Script

There is another reason White House handlers fear putting Bush in an unstructured setting with civilians. They have no idea what he might say. And his unscripted moments are often his worst. Just after Hurricane Katrina, he famously praised embattled FEMA chief Michael Brown, saying, “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of job” — even though days later Brown was shown the door.

When on the road trying to promote his plan for overhauling Social Security, Bush joked about retirees having a “faulty memory.”

Also, Bush gets testy when challenged. The last thing the White House wants is for the president to show his anger at an unruly citizen, as he did during his 2004 presidential debates against John Kerry, exhibiting looks of irritation and disgust that gave the impression of a man who cannot stand criticism.

If a free-for-all with an untamed audience makes the Bush team nervous, they could at least have him address the nation from the Oval Office. But White House advisers have concluded that past uses of that venue fell flat.

Bush must find some way to acknowledge rising dissent around the country if he is to have any chance of controlling it. But his one reference to the public in the Naval Academy speech was to tell the cadets that “the American people stand behind you.”

That is a safe assessment, to be sure. Even the most emphatic anti-war critics support the troops. The question is whether the American people now stand behind President Bush.

It appears they do not, and it is time for him to stand before average Americans, take their questions, hear their concerns and make his case directly to them. Hiding behind props and soldiers only reinforces their feeling that he is not listening to them.

Contributing Editor Craig Crawford is a news analyst for MSNBC, CNBC and “The Early Show” on CBS. He can be reached at"


Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Some Bloghumor a la Gout ReThuglicaineaise

During the time I have spent with the assorted progressive blogs, I have found this line oft-offered by the Dittoheads, Freepi, and other Right-Wing nitwits.

"All your base are belong to us!"

I often wondered where the hell that line originated.

I now have the answer: if you click here, you will too - and will get a decent chuckle along the way.

I have to offer up some credit to Pam of Pam's House Blend: she has that "All your base are belong to us!" line posted as a permanent addition to her blog - and has many lovely Freepi Quotes for our collective amusement.

But the original source just takes the cake.

Happy viewing!


The part I love best, of course, is how the Lunatic Cartoon Reasoning sounds like many of the right wingers we know - to include Pam's rather fatuous, self-important, illiterate troll. Seriously - checkit out!


NPR ATC: Activists Sound Alarm on Iraqi 'Honor Killings'

All Things Considered, December 7, 2005
· Women's rights in Iraq are a subject of growing alarm for activists and some secular groups. The widely accepted and seldom prosecuted practice of "honor killings" -- in which family members of women who have had extramarital sex have a right to kill her -- is of particular concern.

Audio for this story is now available


UPDATED: Shots Fired Inside Plane at Miami Airport

Miami Herald:

Shots fired in plane at MIA; one injured

A federal air marshal fired shots on an American Airlines airplane at Miami International Airport, according to broadcast reports. One person has reportedly been injured. Passengers are reportedly still aboard the plane.

American Airlines flight 942 reportedly originated in Medellin, Colombia, and was scheduled to depart for Orlando at 2:18 p.m. Broadcast reports said the Transportation Security Administration says a federal marshal fired the shot at a person who was considered a threat to the safety of the flight.

Miami-Dade police and fire rescue are on the scene. More details will be available soon.
Video: LIVE Streaming CBS4 Continuous Coverage

Article from Miami's CBS Channel 4 WFOR:
Dec 7, 2005 2:29 pm US/Eastern

MIAMI (CBS4 News) An American Airlines plane bound from Medellin, Colombia to Orlando with a stopover in Miami has been rocked by gunfire, apparently when two federal air marshals aboard the flight opened fire on someone a 'high ranking official with the joint terrorism task force' claims was someone they considered a threat to the aircraft. CBS4's Brian Andrews spoke with the representative, who confirmed the shooting, as did a spokesperson for Miami International Airport. There has been no confirmation that anyone was hit by the gunfire, which was on the ground at Miami International Airport when the shots were fired. The flight was AA flight 942 from Medillin, Colombia. It was at gate D-42 when the shots were reported. Miami police and fire rescue crews are on the scene. Keep watching CBS 4 News and CBS4.COM for more developments.

More from CBS4:
CBS4 Investigative Reporter Mike Kirsch says a source close to the investigation says he has been told one person on the aircraft is dead. This has not yet been officially confirmed...One source is now reporting that the shooting may have taken place aboard the jetway connecting the aircraft to the gate.

Not sure where Joe at AMERICAblog got this:

UPDATE: Passenger said he had a bomb in his luggage, passenger exited the flight, he was ordered to stop and get on the ground, he appeared to reach for a weapon, they shot him. That's the line from Homeland Security.

More from 4:
A source tells CBS4's Jennifer Santiago reports a source tells her that this incident was not terrorism related, that a passenger aboard the plane announced that he had a bomb. Brian Andrews reports his sources say the incident happened very close to the front door of the Boeing 757, and got into a confrontation with two air marshals traveling aboard the plane. Shots were fired over concern for the safety aboard the plane, Brian's sources say.


MIAMI, Florida (CNN) — Federal air marshals shot and killed a man on a boarding bridge at Miami International Airport after he said he had a bomb, two sources familiar with the incident told CNN...Upon investigation, there was no evidence that the man had a bomb, an official said.

CNN: The man was a "44-year-old U.S. citizen"

CBS: "a white male"

Mary Gardner, a passenger on the plane, told WTVJ the man started “running crazily through the aisle” after the plane landed in Miami. Gardner said a woman seated with the man ran after him, yelling that her husband was bipolar and had not taken his medication. Gardner described the woman as “hysterical.”
CNN: The dead man has been identified as "Rigoberto Alpizar."

Alpizar was traveling with a woman and had arrived in Miami on a plane from Ecuador, federal officials said. He and the woman began arguing before getting off the plane in Miami, two officials said...After he got off the plane in Miami and went through customs, he got on the Orlando-bound plane and said he had a bomb, Air Marshal Service spokesman Dave Adams said. Air marshals asked him to get off the plane, which he did, but when they asked him to put his bag down, he refused, Adams said. Alpizar then approached the marshals in an aggressive manner, at which point two or three shots were fired, he said.


Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Short but Bitter-Sweet

A terminally ill man believed to be the first in Britain to "marry" his partner in a civil partnership has died just one day after the ceremony. Matthew Roche, 46, who had lung cancer, and Christopher Cramp held their ceremony hours after the Civil Partnership Act became law on Monday. The couple, from Brighton, were given special permission to go ahead before the normal 15-day waiting period. The ceremony was held at St Barnabas Hospice in Worthing, West Sussex...


WP: 3 D.C. Mayoral Hopefuls Back Civil Unions

Three of the five major Democratic candidates for D.C. mayor said they support legalization of civil unions for same-sex couples, but they told a forum of Baptist ministers yesterday that they would not try to force reluctant pastors to perform same-sex wedding ceremonies.

Council member Adrian M. Fenty (D-Ward 4), former telecommunications executive Marie C. Johns and lobbyist Michael A. Brown said they are in favor of changing D.C. law to permit same-sex couples to form civil unions. Such a move would make the District one of the few jurisdictions in the nation to provide that degree of legal recognition....


Whose Torture Is It?

Andrew Sullivan:

"Here's an interesting case. In the Iraq court-room yesterday, a woman described being tortured by Saddam's thugs in Abu Ghraib, back when he controlled it. Her account of torture is as follows:
"They forced me to take off my clothes," said the woman, referred to only as Witness A by the court. "They kept my legs up. They handcuffed me and started beating me with cables. It wasn't just one guard, it was many guards." ...
"I agree that things in Abu Ghraib were, until recently, bad, but did they use dogs on you? Did they take photographs?" asked one defense attorney, attempting to raise the issue of U.S. prisoner abuse at the prison.
"No," she replied.
According to the Wall Street Journal's definition of torture, this woman wasn't subjected to "anything close" to torture. Repeated beatings are specifically not torture, as argued by AEI legal scholar, John Yoo, who helped craft Bush administration policies. The woman was not water-boarded, she was not shackled in stress positions, she was not subjected to hypothermia, she was not sexually abused and she was not threatened by dogs. She did not, in other words, come even close to being tortured, according to the Wall Street Journal. Do they still abide by their position? Does vice-president Cheney agree that she was merely subjected to "coercive interrogation techniques"?"


Commercialize Christmas, or Else

From the New York Times:

Religious conservatives have a cause this holiday season: the commercialization of Christmas. They're for it.


This campaign - which is being hyped on Fox and conservative talk radio - is an odd one...There is also something perverse, when Christians are being jailed for discussing the Bible in Saudi Arabia and slaughtered in Sudan, about spending so much energy on stores that sell "holiday trees." What is less obvious, though, is that Christmas's self-proclaimed defenders are rewriting the holiday's history...America has a complicated history with Christmas, going back to the Puritans, who despised it. What the boycotters are doing is not defending America's Christmas traditions, but creating a new version of the holiday that fits a political agenda.

The Puritans considered Christmas un-Christian, and hoped to keep it out of America. They could not find Dec. 25 in the Bible, their sole source of religious guidance, and insisted that the date derived from Saturnalia, the Roman heathens' wintertime celebration...From 1659 to 1681 Massachusetts went further, making celebrating Christmas "by forbearing of labor, feasting or in any other way" a crime....


In. Star: No vote on Indianapolis gay discrimination ban

Advocates, critics state their cases to council panel
By Brendan O'Shaughnessy
Supporters and opponents of gay rights presented their arguments Monday to a City-County Council panel considering for the second time a proposal to ban discrimination against gays.

The Rules and Public Policy Committee did not vote on Proposal 622, but the three members present out of seven heard many passionate opinions during more than two hours of public testimony.

More than 100 people attended the meeting, where speakers touched on topics ranging from whether homosexuality is a choice to comparisons with other kinds of civil rights.

The committee is expected to vote on the measure Dec. 13, and it could come before the full council Jan. 5.

Curt Smith, president of the Indiana Family Institute, said the proposal was unnecessary because there is no data showing gays have suffered from discrimination.
"There have been heartfelt stories here tonight," Smith said. "But I submit to the council that there has not been any evidence of a public policy problem."

Jackie Nytes, a council member co-sponsoring the proposal, said it is impossible to document the problem because -- unlike racial and gender discrimination -- there is no formal method of measuring how often gay and transgender discrimination occurs. "You can't count instances if there's no law against it," she said.

Current laws protect all workers from discrimination based on race, religion, age and several other factors. The anti-discrimination ordinance would protect gay and transgendered people from being fired or denied housing because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

City and state employee hiring policies already include such protections, and the ordinance would extend the protections to people who work at businesses with six or more employees, excluding religious institutions and certain nonprofits. Bloomington, Michigan City, West Lafayette and Fort Wayne already have passed similar ordinances.

The same proposal to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or identity failed in April in an 18-11 council vote that crossed party lines. Supporters Nytes and Scott Keller re-introduced it last month, hoping to persuade four members to switch their votes and pass it in a second attempt.