Or, better yet, to be on the receiving end of a hellfire missile if we cannot get him extradited to the US for trial and execution.
Julian Assange said U.S. informants named in secret cables 'deserved' to be killed and initially refused to redact their names, a new book has revealed.
* * *
Assange's apparent gung-ho attitude in an early meeting to naming to naming U.S. informants stunned his media collaborators, the new book claimed.
The title said he told international reporters: 'Well, they're informants so, if they get killed, they've got it coming to them. They deserve it.' The book continues: 'There was, for a moment, silence around the table.'
This scumbag needs to be dead -- the sooner the better.
And for Mr. Assange's lawyers, let me make myself perfectly clear.
The word is spelled as follows.
And lest there be any confusion about that, here it is again.
Remember that guy I blogged about this morning -- the one who threatened to blow up the mosque? Well, some inconvenient truths have emerged about him that make the effort to blame "hate speech from the Islamophobic Right" an utter failure.
According to federal records, Stockham pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to federal charges stemming from the case in Vermont in 2004. That included threatening the president, mailing threatening communications, threatening by use of the telephone to use explosives, and threatening witnesses.
A psychiatric examination found that Stockham suffered from bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and personality disorder with anti-social features.
In the Vermont incident, he told authorities at the time of his arrest at a Veterans Affairs Department complex in Colchester that his minivan was full of explosives. A search found no explosives.
Before the arrest, Stockham called a local paper twice to say he was going to explode bombs in the neighborhood. In one call, he identified himself as "Hem Ahadin," saying he was "a local Muslim terrorist on a roll."
He ranted against the VA, the FBI and Bush, largely because of the things the president had said about Iraq in a speech earlier in the week.
According to affidavit filed in U.S. District Court, Stockham threatened to carry out "jihad," or holy war, against the VA office in White River, Vt.
Let's look here.
Well, not under current law -- but some are making the proposal.
School districts should be allowed to give teachers unpaid furloughs and cut their salaries to help deal with a funding shortfall that one estimate says could cost 100,000 jobs, a leading state senator says. State Senate Education Committee Chairman Florence Shapiro, R-Plano, said the layoff projection could be whittled if school districts could take less drastic steps, an area she said loosening state restrictions could help temper the effects of a budget shortfall.
* * *
ďOne of those burdens that we have placed on our school districts is that they cannot decrease your salary. They canít have furlough days. Itís not allowed in the law. The only option is to fire,Ē said Shapiro. ďWe need to give them the ability to lower teacher salaries.Ē
I'll say it flat out -- I'm opposed to allowing school districts to take back salary increases we have earned over the years, especially those based upon seniority, advanced degrees, or specialized training/credentials. The expectation of doing the same work for less money just is not acceptable. But I might be reconciled to the unpleasant reality of furloughs under certain conditions.
As you can imagine, I don't like the idea of furloughs at all. I believe it is a bad thing for our students. However, if such furloughs are to become a reality, they cannot be something for teachers and school districts alone, -- every group of public employees has to bear the burden and make the sacrifices. What's more, such furloughs must be implemented in such a way as to minimize the direct negative effects on the education of our students while maximizing the savings -- and the elimination of those non-instructional days and the costs of consultants and presenters will do that in a way that furloughing teachers on instructional days while replacing them with paid substitutes will not.
In the end, though, i agree with those who argue that there has to be a better way of dealing with the state budget than the level of cuts currently proposed -- especially with the chunk of cash in the rainy day fund. But if furloughs are coming, we in education (both liberal and conservative, Democrat and Republican) had better be ready to make constructive suggestions as to how they should be implemented -- hence my points above.
After all, let's look at the quote.
ďOur government is supposed to be of, by and for the people, but it has been hijacked by self-interested billionaires. We must take it back.ď
That is Bob Edgar, the president of the allegedly mainstream Common Cause, speaking. Odd, isn't it, that he is using that phrase.
After all weren't we told that rhetoric about the need to "take our country back" in the wake of electoral defeat is an uncivil, vitriolic incitement to violence and a sign of contempt for our nation's institutions? And given that the complaint is that certain individuals have been free to exercise their rights under the First Amendment, doesn't this call to "take our country back" constitute nothing less than an attack on the Bill of Rights?
But then again, the liberals think that they have an inherent right to control America, regardless of what the American people have to day on the matter. So when they win, no one is permitted to discuss "taking our country back" without accusations of evil motives and intentions. On the other hand, liberals using such language themselves self-righteously view themselves as justified. After all, Left is right and Right is wrong -- just ask the Left. Which is why they can insist they will "take our country back" from billionaires -- while taking megabucks from billionaires like George Soros.
H/T Hot Air
Rutgers is a publicly funded university. it claims to have a non-discrimination policy. So what were its campus police doing over the weekend when they enforced a Jew-free zone established by an anti-Zionist group at an event that was supposed to be free and open to the public?
Jewish students at Rutgers University and their supporters reportedly were barred from a campus event sponsored by anti-Zionist groups.
Rutgers campus police on Saturday night prevented some 400 Jewish students and their supporters, including Holocaust survivors, from a program called "Never Again for Anyone," the WordlNetDaily online newspaper reported.
The student-sponsored event was organized by three national organizations: the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Americans for Muslims in Palestine and the Middle East Children's Alliance, according to the report. It was endorsed by BAKA: Students United For Middle Eastern Justice, as well as humanitarian, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, Greek life and anti-racist student organizations at the university, according to the Rutgers student newspaper, The Daily Targum.
A letter by BAKA published in the student newspaper Jan. 27 invited all members of the campus community to the event.
And that is the key -- ALL MEMBERS OF THE CAMPUS COMMUNITY were invited. there was no mandatory fee for the event.
Well, at least not until the Jews began to arrive to oppose an event that was characterized by Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism by the sponsors. At that point, the organizers began physically bullying Jewish students and then had the campus cops remove the Jews. Here's an account by one of the students turned away.
Interestingly enough, this event makes it really clear what the "anti-Zionists" want the Middle East to look like if their goals are successful in their goals. It is striking, is it not, how close that vision is to the one proposed by the regime that ruled Germany from 1933 to 1945.
Since Rutgers is billed as "the State University of New Jersey", one has to wonder how New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, not to mention the Obama/Holder Justice Department, are going to deal with this incident. We've got a clear civil rights violation -- do civil rights laws apply to Jews any more?
Mao and his successors tried to break down the traditional cultural mores of the Chinese people in the decades after the Communist takeover of China in 1949. In an attempt to bring the nation forward economically, the Communists have encouraged -- and at times required and enforced -- single child families. This has managed to change the family dynamic quite seriously.
In fact, so seriously that the very pattern of filial piety that the Communists set out to destroy may now be legislated by the same Communists!
Under a proposal submitted last Monday by the Civil Affairs Ministry to Chinaís State Council, adult children would be required by law to regularly visit their elderly parents. If they do not, parents can sue them.
ďBefore, the courts did not accept this kind of lawsuit,Ē Wu Ming, a deputy inspector for the ministry, told The Legal Evening News this month. ďBut from now on, they will have to open up a case.Ē
Some argue this law may not pass, while others are not so sure. But the point is that by breaking the back of the traditional Chinese family -- a large, multi-generational unit -- the Communists ahve created the problem of abandoned elderly. And that, my friend, is what we call the law of unintended consequences in action.
The answer to the worldwide phenomenon of Islamic terrorism is not terrorism against Islamic institutions in this country.
An ex-Army veteran from California who is accused of driving to Metro Detroit's largest mosque with a trunk full of explosives is behind bars after being charged with making a terrorist threat.
Roger Stockham, 63, is charged with one count of a false report or threat of terrorism and one count of explosives-possession of bombs with unlawful intent after Dearborn police arrested him Monday outside the Islamic Center of America, one the largest mosques in North America.
Sorry, folks, but I won't support this guy. Nor will I, as I have seen some do, argue that the material he had was insufficient to do much damage to the mosque. It is simply not acceptable to threaten or engage in acts of terrorism against Muslims or Muslim institutions -- and this is not the first time that I've taken this position.
Here's hoping that Stockham finds himself residing in a prison cell for an extended period of time.
Here are this weekís full results from the Watcher's Council balloting:
Man -- this one is a something else!
A woman has filed a $1 trillion lawsuit against Diddy (real name: Sean Combs), alleging that he caused 9/11, put her child in the hospital and stole a poker chip worth "100 zillions of dollars."
Valerie Joyce Wilson Turks is seeking a restraining order against the mogul, which a judge denied, but set a hearing for Jan. 31.
Turks believes Diddy, his ex-girlfriend Kim Porter (the mother of their twins) and LAPD brutality victim Rodney King were behind the collapse of the World Trade Center towers, according to court papers obtained by RadarOnline.com.
This one is just astounding -- especially the bit about Diddy stealing her casino chip worth $100 zillion -- and "put me and my baby in the hospital and broke my baby 2 legs and sexual assaulted my children and crushed us."
I'm guessing that Ms. Turks filed this suit on her own behalf, without an attorney representing her. After all, any lawyer would be subject to serious sanctions for wasting the courts time if they brought these papers within a mile of the courthouse.
As things have gotten more dicey in Egypt, one of the more interesting developments was this one.
President Hosni Mubarak hasnít been able to stop the protesters who took to Egyptís streets on Tuesday, so in the ensuing days, heís attempted to stop them from communicating with each other and the outside world.
Several American sitesĖTwitter, YouTube, Hotmail and GoogleĖas well as the Chinese search engine Baidu were blocked by Mubarak and the Egyptian government on Wednesday, Jan. 26. By Thursday night, Mubarak had shut off Internet access to most of Egypt and disrupted cell phone service. According to tech security blogger James Cowie, the Egyptian government made an ďunprecedentedĒ decision in interrupting Internet access.
ďThe Egyptian government appears to have ordered service providers to shut down all international connections to the Internet,Ē Cowie wrote. ďEvery Egyptian provider, every business, bank, Internet cafe, website, school, embassy, and government office that relied on the big four Egyptian ISPs for their Internet connectivity is now cut off from the rest of the world. Link Egypt, Vodafone/Raya, Telecom Egypt, Etisalat Misr, and all their customers and partners are, for the moment, off the air.Ē
A controversial bill handing President Obama power over privately owned computer systems during a "national cyberemergency," and prohibiting any review by the court system, will return this year.
Internet companies should not be alarmed by the legislation, first introduced last summer by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), a Senate aide said last week.
Now I'm not going to go all crazy on folks, but just imagine the power for abuse that is inherent in this power. The bill does not define a "national cyberemergency" with any degree of specificity, and it specifically makes the unilateral determination of the executive unreviewable by any other body.
Sorry, that is power I don't want in any American leader's hands, my friends. It is antithetical to our entire Constitutional form of government, because it eliminates basic aspects of the system of checks and balances.
Is it really so far-fetched to imagine that, in the wake of an event like 9/11 (or even the attempted murder of Congresswoman Gabby Giffords), an unscrupulous occupant of the Oval office might find him or herself tempted to use that power to shut down political dissent? One does not need to imagine such an individual being a dictator -- think Johnson in 1968, Nixon in 1970 or 1973, Bill Clinton in 1999 -- to come up with scenarios where such power would have been ripe for abuse had the internet been as central to communications as it is today or as it promises to be in the future. And let's not get into the impact on the rights guaranteed under the First Amendment -- do we really want any leader given the authority to terminate them without review by the courts?
Williams has been on the Texas railroad commission -- which oversees the state's large energy industry and has absolutely nothing to do with railroads -- for 12 years. He was first appointed by then-Gov. George W. Bush in 1998 and he was popularly reelected three times, most recently in 2008. He resigned last week to prepare for a Senate bid. Before that, he was a prosecutor in the Reagan Justice Department and ran the civil rights office in the first President Bush's Department of Education.
Discussing his platform, Williams seems to be saying "don't mess with Texas" all over again. He wants to repeal the "disastrous" health care bill President Obama signed into law. "I'm hopeful that the repeal bill might make it to the president's desk before the next election," he says. Williams also adamantly opposes cap and trade -- "I know a little bit about Washington's impact on the energy sector" -- and fears an unchecked Obama Environmental Protection Agency.
Michael Williams is an accomplished man with the ability to electrify a room when he speaks. And in a day and age when we are dealing with energy issues, hereís a man who has been dealing with the nitty-gritty details of that industry for years. Most importantly, he believes in the values of the US Constitution. I know how Iíll be voting in next yearís primary.
It is on display for all to see, in the pages of the New York Times.
Kyrsten Sinema, a Democratic state senator who opposes both those measures, said she had had better success since the shootings dealing with Republican leaders on procedural matters, like allowing Democrats adequate time to speak out against things they find outrageous. But she said the Tucson tragedy had not caused Republicans to forge a common agenda with Democrats.
Yeah, thatís it Ė civility, and its cousin bipartisanship, require the GOP to surrender its priorities and policies in order to enact what the Democrats want. It requires the Republicans to give to the Democrats what they could not win from the voters at the ballot box. And if that is civility, then this Republican wants none of it.
Mom clearly deserved to be charged and convicted, given the law and the facts in this case.
An Ohio mother's attempt to provide her daughters with a better education has landed her behind bars.
Kelley Williams-Bolar was convicted of lying about her residency to get her daughters into a better school district.
"It's overwhelming. I'm exhausted," she said. "I did this for them, so there it is. I did this for them."
Williams-Bolar decided four years ago to send her daughters to a highly ranked school in neighboring Copley-Fairlawn School District.
But it wasn't her Akron district of residence, so her children were ineligible to attend school there, even though her father lived within the district's boundaries.
Over the years, I've had a number of students who did the same thing -- got a grandparent or cousin or other relative to claim that they lived inside the district, even though the kid did not. The parents then drop the kid off at a bus stop every morning. This created a number of problems -- only some of them related to the fact that we were educating another district's kid at our district's expense. All too often, these same kids were discipline problems who disrupted the eduction of other students, so they were in no way an asset to our school.
Where I've been distressed is in the response of so many conservatives to this story. They picture mom as a hero, and condemn the school district for going after her -- while at the same time condemning illegal immigrants. But the argument these folks make -- "this is just a parent seeking a better life and education for her kids" -- is the same one made by advocates for illegal aliens and their kids. I don't see it as having any more legitimacy in this case then it does in theirs.
Now some of you claim that I, who have advocated for school choice, and take this position and be consistent. That's easy -- what I believe ought to be the case (which would have made what this mother did perfectly legal) and what the law currently establishes are two different things. Until all -- or at least a substantial portion -- of the education dollars intended to educate each child follow the child where they actually attend school rather than being allocated by geography and only to public schools, this mother is stealing from the taxpayers of the other school district. While she is certainly a poster child for why there ought to be school choice, her actions were legally and morally wrong.
Has it really been 25 years since we lost these brave men and women in the Challenger explosion?
It is the story of a girl sold unwillingly into marriage by her family for $9000 and the man she ran off with for love.
And their death by stoning as mandate by their religion.
Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid defended the stoning.
He told the BBC: 'Anyone who knows about Islam knows that stoning is in the Koran, and that it is Islamic law.
'There are people who call it inhuman - but in doing so they insult the Prophet. They want to bring foreign thinking to this country.'
The one who will kill you for behaving like a free human being. That's who.
Allah who is going to cut your head off if you don't become Muslim.
International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that Christians in the Ethiopian city of Besheno are being harassed and physically abused after Muslims posted notices on the doors of Christian homes warning them to convert, leave the city or face death.
Three Christian leaders were forced to flee the city and two Christians have been forced to convert to Islam. In the Muslim majority city, the entire evangelical Christian community consists of about 30 believers.
No compulsion in religion in Islam? Why doesn't someone tell the Muslims that -- and why don't the so-called moderate Muslims around the world condemn stuff like this and rush to the aid of those being threatened with death? You know, if Islam REALLY doesn't countenance coercion in religion.
I sure do Ė and this reporter had me ready to start condemning the authors of this legislation.
Arizona Republicans are to introduce legislation on Thursday seeking to challenge the right to U.S. citizenship for the children of legal and illegal immigrants born in the state.
Now I was outraged Ė after all, I welcome legal immigrants who are here seeking to become productive and law-abiding parts of our society. Of course their children should get citizenship in the same manner as the children of natural born citizens. This legislation seems to be a monumentally bad idea Ė and flies in the face of every bit of citizenship jurisprudence over since the 14th Amendment passed in the 1860s.
But then you get to the middle of the article, and find that all is not as you have been led to believe.
The immediate aim of the legislation "is to trigger ... a Supreme Court review of the phrase 'subject to the jurisdiction thereof' in the 14th amendment," Kavanagh told Reuters in a telephone interview.
It ultimately seeks "to deny citizenship to any child born of parents who are not citizens of the United States, be they illegal aliens, or foreigners on business or for tourist purposes," he added.
Now wait Ė this makes it seem that the law would seek to distinguish between those who violate our nationís immigration laws, non-immigrant aliens legally present in the US, and legal immigrants for the purposes of granting birthright citizenship. The children of the first group should clearly not be receiving US citizenship, while thereís a strong argument that the children of those only here temporarily as non-immigrants should also not become automatic US citizens. But as I read the whole explanation from State Rep. John Kavanagh, it appears that the legislation makes no challenge to the concept that the children of legal immigrants are birthright citizens under the 14th Amendment. That fits very well with my understanding of how citizenship by birth ought to be acquired, and makes me more favorably disposed towards this legislation.
That said, I think that if enacted the legislation faces a rough road for two reasons. First, the citizenship issue is explicitly a federal matter rather than a state matter. Secondly, the weight of precedent would make the successful defense of this legislation difficult. But the reality is that this is really the only way to challenge the current practice, short of amending the Constitution. After all, our courts do not issue advisory opinions Ė they only make rulings where there is a real case or controversy. It would therefore take legislation like this to even get the matter before a court for consideration.
The Reuters article, though, does not really seek to inform or enlighten the reader. It begins with a dubiously accurate statement, includes an unclear quote, and doesnít ever offer an explanation as to why there is a legitimate reason to seek this sort of legal conflict. That, therefore , really makes this article a case of journalistic malpractice by the reporters who wrote it, the editors who published it, and the news outlets that ran it. Which is too bad Ė the American public deserves a better examination of the issue.
UPDATE: This seems to me to be the more productive method of approaching the citizenship issue -- and quite frankly, I fail to see how anyone who is not an open-border supporting shill for illegal immigration can object to this proposal.
Two Republican senators are introducing a resolution that would end the constitutional right to citizenship that comes with being born on U.S. soil.
Rand Paul (Ky.) and David Vitter (La.) are introducing a resolution this week that would amend the Constitution so that a person born in the United States could only become an American citizen if one or more of his or her parents is an legal citizen, legal immigrant, or member of the armed forces, according to a joint press release Thursday.
This is actually the sort of policy that most nations have -- including all the European nations that liberals keep saying we need to emulate (actually, some have even stricter policies).
Two stories today ought to make you feel a little bit less safe from terrorism.
U.S. border authorities have arrested a controversial Muslim cleric who was deported from Canada to Tunisia three years ago and was caught earlier this month trying to sneak into California inside the trunk of a BMW, according to court documents.
Said Jaziri, the former Imam of a Muslim congregation in Montreal, was hidden inside a car driven by a San Diego-area man who was pulled over by U.S. Border Patrol agents near an Indian casino east of San Diego. Jaziri allegedly paid a Tijuana-based smuggling group $5,000 to get him across the border near Tecate, saying he wanted to be taken to a ďsafe place anywhere in the U.S.Ē
Right there weíve got an agent of Islamic radicalization sneaking into out country. How long until our ďfriendsĒ with al-Qaeda, Hamas, and Hezbollah start using the same method of entering our country? Assuming, of course, that they havenít done so yet.
And this second story is one that should make you wonder if they have.
A book celebrating suicide bombers has been found in the Arizona desert just north of the U.S.- Mexican border, authorities tell Fox News.
The book, "In Memory of Our Martyrs," was spotted Tuesday by a U.S. Border Patrol agent out of the Casa Grande substation who was patrolling a route known for smuggling illegal immigrants and drugs.
Published in Iran, it consists of short biographies of Islamic suicide bombers and other Islamic militants who died carrying out attacks.
According to internal U.S. Customs and Border Protection documents, "The book also includes letters from suicide attackers to their families, as well as some of their last wills and testaments." Each biographical page contains "the terrorist's name, date of death, and how they died."
You know, I somehow doubt that Pedro Lopez and his pregnant girlfriend Lupita brought this with them while they entered the US looking for work and a place to birth their anchor baby. Seems to me that it would more likely be some guy named Muhammad, bound for the interior of the US with terrorist intent.
But donít worry Ė the government tells us that our sieve-like southern border is no threat to our national security. Would Barry Hussein and his minions lie to us?
Do Americans Ė indeed any people Ė have the right to take up arms against their nationís government when they live in a democracy? According to one law professor, Carl T. Bogus of the Roger Williams University School of Law, such a right does not exist in a democracy.
We must be eternally vigilant about government errors and abuse. But we must recognize that differences of opinion are the normal order of things. In a constitutional democracy, we correct errors through constitutional means.
It will not do to say that we must be armed and ready to go to war with our government in the event that it becomes tyrannical. There are always those who believe that government tyranny is not a future contingency but a present reality. That may not have been the case with Jared Loughner, but it was the case with John Wilkes Booth and Timothy McVeigh.
There we have it Ė since we are a society that operates by democratic means, that means that the very notion of taking up is illegitimate. Or so argues Carl Bogus. Indeed, he dares to classify those of us (and I gladly include myself in that number) with a presidential assassin and a murderous terrorist. But what he fails to grapple with is the truth of the principles that he tried to explain away as valid only in the historical context of the American Revolution Ė the words of the Declaration of Independence.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
Notice, please, that this cornerstone of our nationís independence does not limit its principles to just one time and place Ė it states a universal truth. Whenever ANY FORM OF GOVERNMENT becomes destructive of peopleís liberties, it is inarguably the right of the people to make a change in that government Ė and when such a regime becomes despotic, it is their right and duty to THROW OFF (overthrow) said government.
Of course, does this necessarily mean the use of violence to achieve change? Certainly not Ė the use of violence should, ought, and must be reserved for only the most rare of circumstances. But is the use of violence precluded because a government calls itself democratic, perhaps retaining the form and trappings of a republic while becoming despotic and beyond the control of the people in reality? No, it is not Ė and indeed it cannot be so precluded if we are to remain faithful to the founding principles of American independence.
How, then, does Bogus reach his flawed conclusion? He does so by assuming that at all times and in all circumstances the American government (and any democratic republic) is the peopleís government rather than something alien to them which is imposed upon them without their consent. And therein lies the flaw of his argument.
Consider circumstances in which a relatively closed cabal of oligarchs manages to secure control of the instruments of government. They could certainly pass and implement laws and have them held to be valid in the courts upon which members of that elite sit, even as they ride roughshod over the will of the people.
We see such a situation in the wake of Proposition 8 in California. The people passed a proposition banning gay marriage, only to have members of the legislature pass bills that would have authorized it and courts rule that the vote of the people was without force due to a tortured reading of the stateís constitution. Upon the amending of that constitution by the vote of the people, the executive branch refused to carry out its obligation to defend the amendment in the courts and the courts in turn ruled the amendment itself to be a violation of the constitution to which the people had appended it at the ballot box. In effect, the forms and trappings of democracy exist, but the reality is something quite different. Iíd argue that such a situation cries out for the use of force by the people to take back control of the reins of government from those who have shown blatant disregard for the will of the people Ė at least in theory. Provided, of course, that one could make a cogent case that this is part of ďa long train of abuses and usurpationsĒ of such severity as to have created the very sort of despotism that makes the government of that state a hollow democracy which is not, in fact, the peopleís government. At that point it would have become the very sort of alien government that Bogus posits that the British Crown and Parliament were in the 1770s.
Bogus, however, speaks specifically to the issue of the use of Second Amendment rhetoric in response to proposals to undercut the very right to keep and bear arms guaranteed by the Second Amendment. He would, no doubt, find my words here to be the very sort of frightening stuff that undermines faith in democracy and which no doubt is the very reason that rights under the Second Amendment (and probably the First Amendment, for that matter) ought to be restricted and limited by government. And therein we return to the same problem noted above Ė when government is not merely wrong, but is in fact impinging upon the liberties which our fundamental law guarantees to us, does violence become an option? Bogus would argue that it never can in a system that claims to be a democracy.
The Jeffersonian answer, on the other hand, is that it does remain an option Ė that the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. And I, for one, will stand by that principle Ė but suggest that said tree, like a cactus, must be watered sparingly and only when absolutely necessary lest it die from a hyper-abundance of the very substance that would otherwise guarantee its survival. Such ďSecond Amendment solutionsĒ are therefore only to be used in extremis, not in every instance of disagreement with any given policy.
For example, if State Representative Debbie "Skeletor" Riddle walked in with her ID in hand, I would walk her skinny white ass right out the door and billy club her for impersonating a human being.
Interesting, isn't it, that a guy noted for his regular use of sexist and anti-white racist hate speech would immediately target a woman who is smaller than he is for political violence. So much for the civility and new tone in politics that Democrats have been demanding in recent weeks -- either they have been demanding unilateral disarmament by their opponents or Democrat "leaders" making such calls are unable to lead their own followers where they say we should go.
To me, this bit of information about the MLK Parade Bomb in Spokane appears to potentially confirm some speculation of mine.
A bomb maker mixed chemicals with shrapnel in what law enforcement officials say was a weapon designed to inflict maximum injuries during last weekís Martin Luther King Jr. march in downtown Spokane.
Tests are being conducted to determine the type of chemical and whether it made the bomb potentially more deadly, Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich said Tuesday.
ďI know the bomb had some kind of chemical material inside, but we are still trying to figure out what kind. All we know there is a substance,Ē Knezovich said. ďIf there was an added dimension, it added to the lethality of it.Ē
Knezovich said early talks indicated the chemical could have been a compound used in common rat poison. Rat poison has been added to bombs in the Middle East for the stated purpose of acting as an anti-coagulant Ė which inhibits the ability of bleeding wounds to clot.
A chemical, potentially rat poison, that would make the bomb more deadly when combined with the shrapnel? That certainly sounds familiar to me. Familiar enough that I'd have to argue that it is almost a signature for Muslim terrorist groups connected to the Middle East, NOT any sort of domestic group like the American Left has speculated. Just like I hinted when the bomb was first discovered. Hopefully law enforcement will be considering that as they do the investigation, rather than getting sidetracked on politically correct theories.
This development should make the question a serious one for anyone following word affairs.
CAIRO: Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak's son, who is considered as his successor, has fled to Britain along with his family, a US-based Arabic website reported.
The plane with Gamal Mubarak, his wife and daughter on board left for London Tuesday from an airport in western Cairo, the website Akhbar al-Arab said.
The report came as violent unrest broke out in Cairo and other Egyptian cities and hundreds of thousands of people reportedly took to the streets in a Tunisia-inspired day of revolt.
The protesters want Egyptian government to end its 30-year state of emergency and pass a law preventing a president from serving more than two terms, and want the Interior Minister Habib al-Adly to resign.
Gamal Mubarak is supposed to be the the next
dictator president of Egypt after his father dies or retires. That he believes it is necessary to get out of Egypt along with his family should make it clear that the situation is significantly less stable than his daddy's regime wants to project. It also ought to raise questions regarding his position as heir apparent. After all, turning tail and running when there is unrest does not lead to the perception of him as a strong and resolute leader for his people to fear.
Here's the "money quote":
The bipartisan Fiscal Commission I created last year made this crystal clear. I donít agree with all their proposals, but they made important progress. And their conclusion is that the only way to tackle our deficit is to cut excessive spending wherever we find it Ė in domestic spending, defense spending, health care spending, and spending through tax breaks and loopholes.
Got it? Barack Obama believes that when government lets you keep some portion of the money you earn, it constitutes government spending. That means, for example, that when you do your income taxes, that portion not taxed away on your 1040 form constitutes a net loss to the government. The solution to the Obamunist Deficit, then, is to TAX YOU MORE BECAUSE IT ISN'T REALLY YOUR MONEY IN THE FIRST PLACE.
That also means that Barack Obama believes that when you make decisions to spend your own money based upon your own priorities, you are misappropriating government funds for personal use instead of allowing them to be spent for the greater good of society by benevolent bureaucrats. In the end, then, you should be happy for what scraps and shreds of your own productivity the government allows to fall to you.
In Marxist theory, there is the notion that the capitalist class is guilty of alienating the labor of the proletariat by paying them less than the value of what they produce and keeping the remainder for themselves. Oddly enough, that appears to be precisely what Obama and his ilk seek to have government do to the citizenry. It seems to me that the Marxist-influenced Left in our society (so called "liberals" whose ideology has little or nothing in common with the tenets of classical liberalism) is intent upon doing the same thing to us that it condemns "the rich" for doing to the rest of society. Marx argues that it is upon this basis that the people rise up and overturn the unjust social and economic order -- does Obama's flawed understanding of who is entitled to each of our paychecks increase the danger of just such an upheaval in our society, based upon the philosophy that he and his follower iimplicitly embrace?
Back in December, I noted with extreme disapproval the hiring of a defeated county office holder by the Harris County Sheriff's Department despite a county-wide hiring freeze.
And then about a week ago, I noted the sheriff's lament that there would be no way for him to make the 10% budget cut the Harris County Commissioner's Court is seeking from all county departments -- and suggested he might start with that new hire with the six-figure salary.
Well, I've found somewhere else to cut Sheriff Adrian Garcia's budget -- three more political insiders he hired from another defeated Democrat's staff, despite the hiring freeze.
Sheriff Adrian Garcia recently hired to three former employees of recently defeated Precinct 2 Commissioner Sylvia Garcia.
To Commissioner Jerry Eversole, it smells of a violation of the county's year-and-a-half-old hiring freeze.
"If it's Court policy that we have a hiring freeze, then how can somebody -- anybody -- hire somebody and us not know about it? And if they are, why aren't they being punished?" Eversole asked county budget officer Dick Raycraft.
Raycraft replied that his office had a Court order to grant exceptions to the policy. The Court approved it at a meeting on Dec. 21 -- a meeting Eversole missed because he was being indicted in federal court.
A memo from the county's human resource director to the Court recommended that newly elected officials be exempt from the hiring freeze for the purpose of allowing them "to replace personal staff and other limited changes in connection with the election results."
The problem is, of course, that Adrian Garcia is not a newly elected anything -- he was elected during the Obama-induced hysteria in 2008, rather than this year's GOP sweep of county elections. How, then, does he qualify for these new hires?
Well, apparently Dick Raycraft has been authorizing politically sensitive new hires to protect insiders who worked for defeated Democrats -- and it seems to me that Sheriff Adrian "I can't cut my budget that much" Garcia is using his office (and his budget) to help protect those precious Democrat insiders and their county paychecks.
Seems to me that this matter needs to be dealt with at the next meeting of the Commissioner's Court. These political cronies need to get their walking papers because of they were hired in direct contravention of the hiring freeze. The search for a replacement for Dick Raycraft needs to be implemented as well, since he is serving as the center of an ODESSA-style conduit for Democrats to stay on the payroll when they should be off. An investigation of Sheriff Garcia's role in this scheme needs to be ordered as well.
Is Adrian Garcia corrupt? I'm not ready to make that accusation. But there does seem to be something unsavory about his payroll becoming the home of all these political "refugees" during a hiring freeze -- and while he is claiming he just can't make the expected cuts from his budget.
And lest I be called a shill for Jerry Eversole, please remember that I've long since called for his resignation from office in the wake of that indictment.
I'd like to add a hearty welcome to Alan Bernstein, the official spokesman of the Harris County Sheriff's Office, who commented on the last post about his boss and who has indicated he will be commenting on this one once I've posted it. It's good to see that I'm helping to maintain your job security, Alan!
After all, we are killing them.
Ohio says it's switching its lethal injection drug from a scarce anesthetic to one commonly used in surgery as a shortage of the drug normally used for executions has worsened.
The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction said Tuesday the state will use a single, powerful dose of pentobarbital, an anesthetic used in heart surgeries and already adopted by Oklahoma.
The drug replaces sodium thiopental, which was already in short supply when its only U.S. manufacturer announced last week it would no longer produce it.
Ohio prison officials say the version of pentobarbital the state is adopting is a different type of the drug than one used by veterinarians to euthanize pets.
Personally, I remain committed to the notion that we should revert to the practice of injecting lead to the base of the skull, 9mm at a time. It is not only effective, but it is cheaper as well Ė and removes the ethical concerns of some medical groups about allowing medical professionals to be involved in executions.
After all, it is Taco Bell.
Taco Bell might want to change it's "Think Outside the Bun" campaign to "What's Really in That Taco?" after a class-action lawsuit filed against the fast-food giant claimed its taco filler doesn't, um, "meat" federal standards.
The suit against the YUM-brands chain also has a "beef" with the company's advertising, charging its claims of using "seasoned ground beef" or "seasoned beef" in its food products is false.
According to the suit filed by the Alabama law firm Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, the YUM-brands owned chain is using a meat mixture that contains binders and extenders, and does not meet the minimum requirements set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to be labeled as "beef.Ē
Now Iíll be honest Ė Iíve engaged in a little ďwillful suspension of disbeliefĒ any time Iíve gotten a taco from them, just pretending that I was eating meat. And Iíve had at least one canine companion turn up her nose at the remnants of a soft taco when it has been offered to her. So did I really need to know this?
Attorney Dee Miles said the meat mixture contained just 35 percent beef, with the remaining 65 percent containing water, wheat oats, soy lecithin, maltodrextrin, anti-dusting agent and modified corn starch.
Actually, that sounds pretty close to the content of the canned dog food that I sometimes feed our two canine companions. Yum!!!
More of them are seeing the light and switching to the GOP!
In what is believed to be one of the largest number of officeholders to change party affiliation in Texas, Lamar County GOP Chairman John Kruntorad and State Representative Erwin Cain announced today that 9 local elected Democrats have joined the Republican Party. This announcement follows unprecedented election gains by the GOP in 2008 and 2010 as Northeast Texans increasingly identify with the conservative platform of the Republican Party.
Those joining the Republican Party include District Attorney Gary Young; Pct. 1 County Commissioner Lawrence Mallone; Pct. 1 Justice of the Peace (JP) Don Denison; Pct. 3 JP Tim Risinger; Pct. 4 JP Ken Ruthart; Pct. 5, Place 1 JP Cindy Ruthart; Pct. 1 Constable Madaline Chance; Pct. 3 Constable Larry Cope; and Pct. 5 Constable Gene HobbsÖ
When you consider that the face of the Texas Democrat Party is Sheila Jackson Lee, you can see why rational people are fleeing to the GOP. Pretty soon this jackass will be pretty much all that is left of the Donkey Party in the great state of Texas
Talk about biting the hand that feeds you! Here's a guy who gets his paycheck from the space program dumping on a retired astronaut for talking about the impact of the space program.
Who in the hell is Gene Cernan? According to Gene, writing on Congressman Culberson's website:
Hardly a day goes by without a young 30, 40, or even 50 year old (teenager or younger during the days of Apollo) thanking me for the inspiration I gave him or her to become a scientist, engineer, teacher, technician or perhaps a member of our countryís Armed Forces.
Earth to Cernan. Hardly a day goes by that someone wonders who the hell you are and why you are opening your pie hole about the space program. The overwhelming vast majority of Americans couldn't name the lunar module commander for Apollo 11, or the last person who walked on the moon. (That would be you)
Of course, the proprietor of BayAreaHatemoger has a real problem with Gene Cernan. But it has nothing to do with Cernan's intellect or the fact that he accomplished more of significance before his 40th birthday than John can hope to accomplish in his entire life. No, the problem is that Gene Cernan committed the ultimate sin -- giving aid and comfort to a Republican. And that, in John's book, is an offense worse than treason against the United States -- even when that offense is committed in the name of securing support and funding for the very agency where he "works".
But then again, that's what you get from the BayAreaHatemonger!
By the way, John, Cernan commanded the LM on Apollo 10, but what do minor factual details like that matter to a super-genius like you? I'd write to let you know, but we know what happened last time I tried to point out a problem with one of your posts -- I'd rather not see you join Jared Loughner, your fellow deranged, rage-aholic, Bush-hating left-winger, in committing violence against someone you've already threatened to assault.
A blogger at liberal website Daily Kos is recommending former MSNBC personality Keith Olbermann run for U.S. Senate in Connecticut to fill the seat of soon-retiring independent Joe Lieberman.
The blogger, under the moniker ďStranded Wind,Ē posted his argument in favor of Olbermannís candidacy on Saturday, the day after MSNBC abruptly canceled ďCountdown with Keith Olbermann.Ē The blogger wrote that Comcast fired Olbermann, even though Comcast and MSNBC have both publicly stated that the merger had nothing to do with Olbermannís cancellation.
Stranded Wind said Olbermann would be able to ďeasily return [to Connecticut from New York, his current residence] and establish residency,Ē and recommended Olbermann and his lawyers discuss whether his ďcontract issuesĒ with MSNBC ďare a barrierĒ for campaign finances.
Seriously Ė I think it would be fun having Olbermann in the mix politically. Heíd self-destruct on the campaign trail, and turn off voters in Connecticut and nationwide. Indeed, I think he would be the best campaign ad that the GOP could have nationwide Ė especially as use is made of transcripts and (if possible) audio and video of Olbermannís ranting and raving and hatemongering. We could make Keith and Obama the face of the Democrat party Ė and the death of the Democrat Party as well, at least for the 2012 election cycle.
Businesses relocate, or otherwise change their business operations to lower their tax exposure.
Take this company.
CHAMPAIGN Ė The founder of Jimmy Johnís said he has applied for Florida residency and may recommend that his corporate headquarters move out-of-state as a result of the Illinois tax increases enacted last week.
Jimmy John Liautaud told The News-Gazette on Tuesday that he is angry about the moves, which boosted the individual income tax from 3 percent to 5 percent and the corporate income tax from 7.3 percent to 9.5 percent.
ďAll they do is stick it to us,Ē he said, adding that the Legislature and governor showed ďa clear lack of understanding.Ē
ďI could absorb this and adapt, but it doesnít feel good in my soul to make it happen,Ē Liautaud said.
Businesses exist to make a profit, not to pay taxes. When taxes interfere with profit, businesses either close or adapt to preserve their profits. That is what is happening here. And for Illinois, that means they are killing a goose that has been laying golden eggs for them for a couple of decades. And lest you think it is a case of greed -- if you could keep more of your income by moving, wouldn't you?
H/T Glittering Eye
Even though there may be tens of thousands of other distant planets similar in size to Earth, the conditions on them are likely to be too hostile to support life-forms such as ET.
Dr Howard Smith, a senior astrophysicist at Harvard University, believes there is very little hope of discovering aliens and, even if we did, it would be almost impossible to make contact.
So far astronomers have discovered a total of 500 planets in distant solar systems Ė known as extrasolar systems Ė although they believe billions of others exist.
But Dr Smith points out that many of these planets are either too close to their sun or too far away, meaning their surface temperatures are so extreme they could not support life.
Others have unusual orbits which cause vast temperature variations making it impossible for water to exist as a liquid Ė an essential element for life.
In other words, unless there are lifeforms radically different from our own, it is virtually impossible for there to be other lifeforms out there.
Which does raise the question -- how is it that earth has life? Why are conditions here so special that we alone in the universe exist?
A creator who intelligently designed not just the life here, but also the planet and solar system to sustain it?
"Our main concern is really the possible extradition [of Assange] to the U.S. We've been troubled by the sort of rhetoric that has come out of various commentators and principally Republican politicians - Sarah Palin and the like - saying Mr. Assange should be executed, assassinated."
* * *
Anyone who incites others to commit violence against his client, even outside Australia, Stary says, is violating Australian law and can be held accountable for it.
Well, I'm a commentator -- and a GOP elected official -- and I wrote the following suggestions for opening sentences of Julian Assange's memoirs.
My personal thought on the potential first sentence? "Mr. Assange, having been found guilty of espionage against the United States, this military tribunal imposes a sentence of death, to be carried out immediately."
Well that, or perhaps this -- "Holy shit -- that Predator drone just launched a Hellfire missile!"
Assange has engaged in espionage against the United States and given assistance to our nation's enemies in the process -- a capital crime here in the US. As such, I was sincerely advocating his execution. And as long as he is no being held incommunicado by US authorities pending trial and execution, he merits the same sort of treatment due to Mullah Omar or Osama bin Laden -- and the use of an unmanned drone to target him and launch sufficient firepower to render him deceased is certainly an appropriate treatment. I believe that Barack Obama is derelict in his duty as commander-in-chief (impeachably so) for having failed to target him for elimination as an enemy of the United States -- or at least sending in a military unit to extract him from the site of his house arrest and move him to Gitmo for the military tribunal I suggested.
So, Mr. Stary, please prepare the paperwork for your prosecution -- I'll forward you my itinerary in plenty of time for you to serve me.
Apparently the bosses at MSNBC have decided they can get "more crazy for less bucks" By moving Larry O'Donnell into the ‹berDouche's time slot and Ed Schultz after Rachel Maddow, so Keith Olbermann is out the door.
Keith Olbermann, the highest-rated host on MSNBC, announced abruptly on the air Friday night that he was leaving his show, ďCountdown,Ē immediately.
The host, who has had a stormy relationship with the management of the network for some time, especially since he was suspended for two days last November, came to an agreement with NBCís corporate management late this week to settle his contract and step down.
In a closing statement on his show, Mr. Olbermann said simply that it would be the last edition of the program. He offered no explanation other than on occasion ďall that surrounded the show Ė but never the show itself Ė was just too much for me.Ē
Mr. Olbermann thanked his viewers for their enthusiastic support of a show that had ďgradually established its position as antiestablishment.Ē
In a statement, MSNBC said: ďMSNBC and Keith Olbermann have ended their contract. The last broadcast of ĎCountdown with Keith Olbermanní will be this evening. MSNBC thanks Keith for his integral role in MSNBCís success and we wish him well in his future endeavors.Ē
One has to wonder what this means will happen next for the deranged lunatic who has carried the struggling network for years. I'm wondering how long it will be until he shows up on CNN -- perhaps replacing the dreadful Piers Morgan show that debuted this week in place of the fossilized Larry King. Or who knows -- Regis is quitting, so perhaps he can go on air with Kelly Ripa. Or maybe he can find a slot on the Oprah Winfrey Vanity Channel -- though I don't know that the network has room for both of their egos. My big regret is that he has made himself so obnoxious to the majority of Americans that Keith Olbermann can never return to the field where he truly excelled and had some real expertise -- sports reporting and broadcasting. Some reports, though, indicate that the agreement between the network and the fallen star will keep him off the air for an extended period of time.
And interestingly enough, the ultra-liberal network still cannot find a single minority face to add to its lineup. I guess being to the hard left means never having to work with blacks, Hispanics, or Asians.
I don't know -- this just seems like the appropriate sendoff for the deranged left-wing commentator known as "Bathtub Boy"
Others writing and commenting include Howard Kurtz, Hollywood Gossip, Hot Air, Legal Insurrection, Liberty Pundits, The Other McCain, Gateway Pundit, Patterico, NewsBusters, Don Surber, Race 4 2012, GayPatriot, Atlas Shrugs, Verum Serum, RWN, Doug Ross, Sister Toldjah, Michelle Malkin
Here they are! The results of this weeks exercise in blogging excellence by the Watchers of Weasels has borne great fruit.
On the one hand, I admire their forthrightness in saying exactly what they are after.
CCR Appeals to Fox News President for Help in Silencing Glenn Beck Misinformation Campaign Against Progressive Professor
On the other hand, they then have the audacity to say this in the very first paragraph.
January 20, 2011, New York Ė Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) issued a written appeal to Fox News president Roger Ailes to help put a stop to the increasing threats against progressive Professor Frances Fox Piven, largely incited by Fox News host Glenn Beck. In the letter, co-written by Legal Director Bill Quigley and Executive Director Vince Warren the CCR asks that Ailes distinguish between First Amendment rights, of which they are ďvigorous defendersĒ and an ďintentional repetition of provocative, incendiary, emotional misinformation and falsehoods [that place that person] in actual physical danger of a violent response.Ē
So, what we have here is "vigorous defenders" of the First Amendment who lead an organization which claims to be "dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution" demanding that the head of a news organization silence one of the organization's commentators on the basis that his speech is somehow outside the bounds of the First Amendment.
Now that is very interesting. After all, the First Amendment has been held to permit the advocacy of overthrowing the government. It has been held to permit the wearing and uttering of profanity in public places -- including on television. It has been held to permit the burning of American flags and the burning of crosses. Yet somehow, because some hear Glenn Beck's admittedly harsh criticisms of an alleged scholar who regularly makes public statements about matters of public policy and become enraged by them, Beck's words are without First Amendment protections? Really? This is a novel approach to the Constitution -- indeed, it is one that could be used in all sorts of mischievous ways if ever accepted by the courts. Indeed, it would eviscerate the First Amendment, of which the complaining leaders of the left-wing advocacy group claim to be "vigorous defenders".
Not only that, but this tactic creates the possibility of censorship regardless of which way Roger Ailes goes on it.
In the unlikely event that Ailes caves in to this demand, it endangers Beck's ability to continue with his career as a commentator. After all, the argument would go with every station manager, book store owner and web host, Beck's incitement is so extreme that not even the extremists at Fox news will give him a platform, so how can you be complicit in his actions that fall outside of the scope of what the Constitution allows.
And if Ailes acts as I expect he will (and as I believe he morally should), the argument then becomes one for increased government regulation of speech on the airwaves, over cable, and perhaps even the censorship of "inciteful" written material. After all, the argument would go, no force except the government exists which can stop beck and those like him from creating a threatening climate for their political opponents due to the influence of their words on the unstable and the extreme. We saw the preview of just that strategy in the wake of the evil deeds of Jared Loughner in Tucson, despite the clear lack of connection between him and any figure on the Right.
And so the hypocrisy is stunning. Claiming to be "vigorous defenders" of the Constitutional rights of Americans, the leaders of this Leftist organization are out to limit their scope and silence their opponents. Might I suggest that this strategy makes them, like Piven, enemies of the Constitution with goals akin to those of various extremists and terrorists who would eliminate the liberties of Americans. Oh yes -- and hypocrites of as well.
Indeed, those of the generation that fought for independence knew how best to treat such as these -- and it involved tar, feathers, and a rail. And those words, my friends, are fully protected by the US Constitution, no matter what these would-be censors say about the matter.
UPDATE: Fox won't cave.
Joel Cheatwood, a senior vice president, said Friday that Mr. Beck would not be ordered to stop talking about Ms. Piven on television. He said Mr. Beck had quoted her accurately and had never threatened her.
ď ĎThe Glenn Beck Program,í probably above and beyond any on television, has denounced violence repeatedly,Ē Mr. Cheatwood said.
Expect the calls for government censorship of political speech to begin coming from these "vigorous defenders" of the First Amendment in 5. . . 4. . . 3. . . 2. . . .
Frankly, this is just unacceptable.
A proposal to conduct random drug tests of young students in one New Jersey town is raising some eyebrows.
Students at Belvidere Elementary School could be adding drug testing to their list of lessons when they move into middle school.
The Board of Education will vote Wednesday on a plan to randomly test sixth, seventh and eighth graders to see if they are under the influence of drugs. School administrators said they were confident the proposal would pass.
Elementary School Principal Sandra Szabocsik said school officials want to use the testing ďas a deterrent.Ē
One small problem Ė multiple court decisions have held that such programs violate the rights of students as applied to the student body in general (as opposed to limiting it to athletes or participants in extracurricular activities). After all, the tests will be mandatory and the students are compelled to be present at school. There is no suspicion of drug use required, and so it amounts to a non-negotiable demand that one submit to a warrantless search at the whim of government authority. The particular problem is that if the students are required by law to be present, a government body cannot make that presence the basis for a search or the collection of bodily fluids.
While every other department is proposing budget cuts, layoffs, and furloughs in an effort to meet the budget requirements of Harris County, one elected official has refused to do so. (Correction -- as noted by the Sheriff Department's official spokesman in the comments below, departments are supposed to submit such cuts but have not done so yet. Thanks, Alan.)
Sheriff Adrian Garcia said at a news conference last week that he cannot find a 10 percent cut from his current budget of $376 million. Garcia said he will not propose layoffs or furloughs.
"If I institute a 10 percent reduction without being ordered to conduct layoffs, then operations can come to a screeching halt pretty quickly," he said.
* * *
Harris County instituted a hiring freeze about a year and a half ago. It likely has saved millions of dollars, but strained departments whose leaders, like the sheriff, say they are understaffed.
District Clerk Loren Jackson, who was defeated by Republican Chris Daniel last month, will likely stay in county government when his term expires on Dec. 31. Sheriff Adrian Garcia proposes hiring him as his chief of information technology.
Jackson is not named on the Commissioners Court agenda, but he is "the special assistant" candidate the sheriff has submitted for the Court's approval.
That would be a six-figure salary for a guy who was fired by the voters of Harris County, but immediately rehired by his political buddy. I know where we need to start the budget cutting in the Sheriff's Department -- with the "special assistant" for information technology. After all, there is a hiring freeze on.
It may be early to tell, and any number of things could happen between now and next year -- but these numbers do not bode well for the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Got that -- only 42% of Americans want to vote for Barack Obama next year -- 58% are looking for someone else to vote for, with 51% already decided against him. Unless that changes, we should be expecting someone else to be inaugurated on January 20, 2013 -- and that would also mean Republican gains in the house and Senate as well.
H/T Gateway Pundit
We've all seen Rep. Steve Cohen's "civil" attack on Republicans as Nazis on the floor of the House. We've all seen him double down by civilly saying that not only are Republicans like Nazis, but they are also like the KKK.
But you know, that isn't the most disturbing part of Cohen's speech in my book. After all, he's shown his true colors in the past, as Anderson Cooper points out, and the stunning hypocrisy of how this man conducts himself speaks for itself to any decent American.
No, The thing in the speech that I find particularly disturbing is this part, right here.
The first priority I have always believed of government is to keep people alive, their health care. The second is to get them educated. And the third is to get them a job.
Do you see it? It ought to jump right off the page at you.
Look what Congressman Cohen believes to be the role of government to be.
Now look at what the Founders of this great nation believed it to be.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Odd -- while I see some purposes here that might involve keeping people alive (defense of the nation and providing for domestic tranquility would be the main two), I don't see a call for the nation to keep every American alive at all costs and by any means necessary -- and certainly not by providing them health care. If it had, those who wrote the Constitution would have included it later among the enumerated powers, and enacted such programs at the national level during the First Congress.
Similarly, nowhere does the Constitution provide for the federal government educating anyone. That is why there has never been a national education system -- no University of the United States, and a Department of Education (constitutional blasphemy that it is) that is limited only to providing assistance to the states rather than assuming control of the task of educating Americans.
And providing people with jobs? That isn't there -- and when we have had federal jobs programs they have generally been characterized by bloated budgets, rampant corruption, and epic failure. All one needs to do is look at the Obama stimulus to see that.
No, the task that seems most important under the system established by the good great men who wrote the Constitution in 1787 is the task of securing liberty to All Americans. We have at times failed and fallen short of that goal, but our history is the ongoing story of a people seeking more freedom for more people.
And ObamaCare is a repudiation of that road to greater freedom for ourselves and our posterity.
Rather than empowering us to make choices about our medical care, it limits our freedom to choose how to provide for the medical care of ourselves and our families.
Rather than putting choices about treatment in the hands of individuals, it puts it in the hands of government.
Rather than expanding our options, it narrows them down by determining what procedures and medications Americans will be allowed to have -- and even withdrawing effective treatments that the government decides are not economical.
Now Mr. Cohen may believe that those who oppose this massive power grab are like the KKK. He may consider us to be just like the Nazis who presided over the slaughter of millions. But consider this.
Without ObamaCare, our medical choices are in our hands. Under the nationally socialized medical regime that Obama, Cohen and the Democrats support, it will be government bureaucrats -- perhaps with names like Eichmann and Mengle, with similar moral characters -- who will make the decisions about our medical care for us. And while I hesitate to make the claim that there will be "death panels" established -- I consider such rhetoric overwrought -- I cannot dispute the essential truth that under this system the decisions about our medical care will be made in the bowels of government buildings and we will have no option to escape the decisions that they make.
PERSONAL NOTE TO REPRESENTATIVE STEVE COHEN: ObamaCare was sold to us, cloaked in lies, by a charismatic leader who told the people what they wanted to hear while cynically picking out scapegoats like the Tea Party and declaring them to be the enemy within -- complete with accusations of responsibility for political violence that were objectively false or so subjectively stated that they would be impossible to prove. As a student of history, I can think of a certain leader and a certain regime that engaged in such tactics to increasingly choke off liberty before doing violence to those declared to be the enemy -- but contrary to your words regarding the GOP, I hesitate to demonize you, your party, and your president by tarring you with that comparison. Indeed, I will offer you the benefit of the doubt, and state that I believe that you, your party, and your president intend none of the evils that characterized the National Socialist regime that controlled Germany in the 1930s and 1940s, nor those that characterized the various international socialist regimes that have controlled Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea or other enslaved nations at various points over the last 100 years and which sprung from the same command and control ideology that requires the subjugation of free people and the elimination of individual liberty for the benefit of some common good. But sadly, for all the good intentions held close to your hearts and those of your president and your fellow Democrats, those evils will come in some form or fashion if the ideology espoused in your comments and underlying ObamaCare are allowed to proceed unchecked. And resist you we will -- at the ballot box, in the halls of power, and in our daily lives. We resist because we understand the true purpose of American government, as outlined in our Constitution.
God bless America -- may the freedoms of her people endure forever!
MEXICO CITY ó US giant General Motors will invest $540 million to produce two low-emission motors in central Mexico, the company announced here Thursday, accompanied by President Felipe Calderon.
The latest project for GM in Mexico would create 500 direct and another 500 indirect jobs in its plant in Toluca, Calderon said.
GM has four plants in Mexico, and has invested some $5 billion here since 2006, Calderon said.
GM was left reeling by an industry slump when the global economic crisis hit. It received 49.5 billion dollars from the US Treasury and emerged from a bankruptcy restructuring in 2009.
Too bad they couldnít find their way clear to employing some Americans.
You know, since they are doing this expansion on the American taxpayerís dime.
Looks like a brain-dead, semi-talented entertainer wants to know if she should support the right of a free people to live in security, or if she should join the terrorist-supporters in aiding and abetting Jew-hatred.
Pop star Macy Gray wrote on her official Facebook page on Wednesday that she was deliberating whether or not she should perform in February in Israel, as she had received dozens of letters urging her to boycott the country.
"I'm getting a lot of letters from activists urging/begging me to boycott by NOT performing in protest of Apartheid against the Palestinians," Macy Gray wrote on her Wall.
"What the Israeli government is doing to the Palestinians is disgusting, but I wana go. I gotta lotta fans there I dont want to cancel on and I ...don't know how my NOT going changes anything. What do you think? Stay or go?" she asked her fans.
Wrong question, asked of the wrong group of people.
The proper question is this Ė should Israelis and supporters of Israel pay one thin dime to listen to Macy Grayís music, or should they boycott her because of her pandering to terrorist supporters and Jew-haters?
What is Spanish for "Which way to the welfare office?"
Welfare benefits for the children of illegal immigrants cost America's largest county more than $600 million last year, according to a local official keeping tabs on the cost.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich released new statistics this week showing social spending for those families in his county rose to $53 million in November, putting the county government on track to spend more than $600 million on related costs for the year -- up from $570 million in 2009.
Antonovich arrived at the estimate by factoring in the cost of food stamps and welfare-style benefits through a state program known as CalWORKS. Combined with public safety costs and health care costs, the official claimed the "total cost for illegal immigrants to county taxpayers" was more than $1.6 billion in 2010.
"Not including the hundreds of millions of dollars for education," he said in a statement.
The came, they saw, they dropped anchor (babies) -- all on your dime.
Well, I guess this is what Obama meant when he called for civility in political speech.
In an extraordinary outburst on the House floor, Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) invoked the Holocaust to attack Republicans on health care and compared rhetoric on the issue to the work of infamous Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels.
ďThey say it's a government takeover of health care, a big lie just like Goebbels," Cohen said. "You say it enough, you repeat the lie, you repeat the lie, and eventually, people believe it. Like blood libel. That's the same kind of thing. And Congressman Cohen didnít stop there.
ďThe Germans said enough about the Jews and people believed it--believed it and you have the Holocaust. We heard on this floor, government takeover of health care. Politifact said the biggest lie of 2010 was a government takeover of health care because there is no government takeover," Cohen said.
Shameful Ė utterly shameful.
And to think I defended this scumbag against the attacks of fellow Democrats who said a white Jew couldnít represent a district that is predominantly Christian and African-American. Somehow, having been abused by those who actually hold beliefs akin to those of the Nazis, he still has the gall to make this comparison of those who differ with him on a matter of policy. Iím disgusted.
After all, Americans actually using their First Amendment rights to tell an out of control elected official to STFU when he makes irresponsible false accusations against the innocent is just so inconvenient.
[Dupnik] said talk show host Rush Limbaugh encouraged listeners to email the sheriff's office and "tell them what you think" and the department's computers nearly crashed after angry emails began flooding in.
Maybe if Sheriff Dipwad had behaved like a responsible member of law enforcement instead of a partisan hack there would have been no reason to send him those emails in the first place. But by playing the media-hungry attack dog, he opened himself up to criticism.
Hereís the story from Philadelphia.
An abortion doctor has been arrested and charged with the murder of a patient and seven live infants whose spines were severed with scissors at a West Philadelphia clinic that has been described as a house of horrors, officials said today.
But wait Ė the women paid for a dead baby, and so they were entitled to a dead baby. That is even how Barack Obama voted when he was an Illinois legislator.
Wasnít this guy just using Obama-approved methods for supplying the mothers of these unwanted children with the dead baby they paid for? Since we live in the era of HopeíníChange, doesnít that mean that these charges are RAAAAACIST?
Of course, I approve of these charges. I believe that human life exists from conception -- something that the DNA evidence proves unambiguously and which the abortion apologists do their best to tap-dance around. But we have a president in the White House who does not believe that, based upon the public record -- so isn't it quite odd that our society would send a man to jail for something that the supporters of legal abortion argue shouldn't even be a crime, and which could have been legally done before teh child made it out of the birth canal?
Consider this nifty example.
The sharp-edged remarks are part of a speech Mr. Trumka is scheduled to give Wednesday morning that is designed to push back against the policies of Republican lawmakers who seized control of the House in last yearís elections. It is also a goad to President Obama, whose administration has recently seemed eager to court the business community.
Excuse me? ďSeized control of the House in last yearís electionsĒ? Gee, that makes the fact that Republicans won the electoral contests in a majority of House districts sound somehow unsavory and illegitimate, and that their actions are somehow a violation of the fundamental principles of the American political system. Why is it that Trumkaís ďpush backĒ isnít described as being against the policies of Republican lawmakers who are responding to the voice of the American people as expressed in the 2010 elections? Could it be because that would imply that the conservatives are on the side of the angels, while the liberal special interest group that represents a mere fraction of the American workforce is acting in opposition to the sort of policies preferred by a majority of their fellow citizens?
They acknowledge that there is no actual evidence of bias Ė but then go on to argue that it must exist anyway dues to the success that former solicitors general have before the Supreme Court.
Take this example.
At this level, quality includes intricate knowledge of the courtís rulings and the ability to shape arguments. Being a solicitor general certainly gives them that. Still, justices need to ask themselves whether they may unconsciously ó and unfairly ó defer to former solicitors general. When Mr. Olson recently argued before the court on a case about whether medical residents should be required to pay Social Security taxes, he slyly tweaked Justice Sonia Sotomayor and got an affectionate laugh all around.
However, there is only one minor problem with that example. Olson left the post of Solicitor General in 2004, while Sotomayor did not become a justice until 2009. How can one possibly argue that there is a bias born of a working relationship, given that their respective tenures did not overlap?
By the way, the editorial brings up a recent study that the current court is the most likely since 1953 to produce a conservative decision. The date chosen to begin the study is significant. After all, 1953 marks the beginning of the Warren Court Ė the most liberal in the history of the United States. Every other court in US history is more likely to produce conservative decisions than that court. The successor courts Ė Burger, Rehnquist, and Roberts Ė has each in turn been deemed ďmore likely to produce conservative decisionsĒ than its predecessor as the pendulum swung back towards the historical norms of legal and constitutional interpretation. If one had gone back as for as 1900, one would have found that the Roberts Court falls within the historical mainstream of how it decides its cases. So even the evidence used to bolster its weak case is itself flawed. But then again, why should we be surprised Ė this is the biased liberal New York Times we are talking about here.
But the FBI itself tells a different story.
"The confluence of the holiday, the march and the device is inescapable, but we are not at the point where we can draw any particular motive," said Frank Harrill, special agent in charge of the Spokane FBI office.
however, the story has a focus on nothing but possible raceial motives.
Odd, isn't there a history of attempted bombings based upon other motives -- including in the pacific Northwest?
You know, involving members of a certain religious group trying to terrorize Americans into kowtowing to their beliefs rather than living under a system of religious liberty.
But they do throw in this quote from Spokane's mayor.
Spokane Mayor Mary Verner said the attempted bombing was unacceptable.
"I was struck that on a day when we celebrate Dr. King, a champion of non-violence, we were faced with a significant violent threat," Verner said. "This is unacceptable in our community, or any community."
But nobody bothers to mention a recent attempt to bomb a celebration of the birth of another champion of peace and non-violence -- one that took place not so far away from Spokane.
But NPR won't examine the possible connection to Islamic terrorism in their stories -- it doesn't fit the template they decided on.
Given that journalistic malpractice, why are our tax dollars going to finance NPR?
You know, based upon recent history, who will be responsible for engaging in this sort of evil.
The FBI offered a reward Tuesday for information about a potentially lethal bomb found in a backpack along the downtown route of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade.
The discovery before Monday's parade for the slain civil rights leader raised the possibility of a racial motive in a region that has been home to the white supremacist Aryan Nations.
"The confluence of the holiday, the march and the device is inescapable," said Frank Harrill, special agent in charge of the Spokane FBI office. "But we are not at the point where we can draw any particular motive."
He called the planting of the bomb an act of domestic terrorism that was clearly designed to advance a political or social agenda.
Will it be
Based upon recent history, both here and round the world, the answer is most likely to be #2, with #1 being the second most likely possibility.
On the other hand, the MSM and left wing bloggers and politicians are most likely to blame
Based upon recent history history, the answer will be #3 -- with #1 blamed only after an arrest. There will be pleas for tolerance and understanding if it should eventually turn out to be #2. And if it is #2, we'll be treated to an explanation of how the intolerance of folks like #3 are the real cause of the perpetrator's radicalism, not Islam.
Which is, of course, nothing new -- either they are willfully lying or incapable of understanding the flaw in their own "logic".
Going into the debate, Democrats have been criticizing Republican House members for planning to repeal legislation mandating expanded health insurance coverage for ordinary Americans at the same time that Republican lawmakers accept health care coverage provided Congress and paid for with payroll deductions.
"What will be interesting is to see whether these members of Congress who have fully availed themselves now of the federal employees' health insurance initiative here in the Congress with full coverage for their children and their families will vote to repeal any opportunity for that kind of access," says House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat who served as House speaker when Democrats held control of the House.
But the claims of the Democrats in this case are really easy to break down.
I guess I fail to see any hypocrisy in these elected officials taking the insurance offered by their employer.
On the other hand, I do see a situation that looks much more hypocritical.
That looks a whole lot more hypocritical to me -- but I don't see any Democrats rushing out to drop their insurance until a universal mandate for government insurance is put into place.
Just like I don't see folks like Nancy Pelosi, who has always opposed the tax cuts proposed by George W. Bush and extended by the agreement of Barack Obama mailing a check to the US Treasury to divest themselves of their savings under that tax plan. They need hypocrisy like the rest of us need oxygen -- and could not survive without it.
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, a Democrat from Texas, said on Tuesday afternoon that repealing the national health care law would violate the Constitution.
Arguing that the Commerce Clause provides the constitutional basis for ObamaCare, Jackson Lee said repealing the law by passing Republicansí H.R. 2 violates both the Fifth Amendmentís right to due process and the Fourteenth Amendmentís equal protection clause.
ďThe Fifth Amendment speaks specifically to denying someone their life and liberty without due process,Ē she said in a speech on the House floor moments ago. ďThat is what H.R. 2 does and I rise in opposition to it. And I rise in opposition because it is important that we preserve lives and we recognize that 40 million-plus are uninsured.
She continued, ďCan you tell me whatís more unconstitutional than taking away from the people of America their Fifth Amendment rights, their Fourteenth Amendment rights, and the right to equal protection under the law?Ē
Uh, CongressWOMAN!!!!!! Under your argument, the distinguished patriots who wrote the Fifth Amendment and those who ratified it didn't understand their own work. After all, they didn't immediately establish national health insurance paid for by the government. Similarly, the authors of the Fourteenth Amendment didn't understand what was required by their handiwork -- after all, they did not give every American taxpayer funded health care. Indeed, it has taken over two centuries since the adoption of the Fifth Amendment, and nearly a century and a half since the addition of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution for us to find even a single elected official brave and insightful enough to announce the unambiguous truth to the world -- that these two Amendments require that the government provide womb-to-tomb medical care lest someone be deprived of their right to life without due process of law.
So please put down the crack pipe and step away from LSD. ObamaCare exists only through statute -- and that which is established by statute can be modified or repealed by Congress without implicating any Constitutional rights. So, CongressWOMAN, your analysis is an epic fail -- so great of one that even the most gullible of the constituents who vote for you based upon skin-color rather than rational thought ought to be able to see through your race-based flimflam.
And one of them ended up becoming a hero of the Left before he threatened to murder an innocent Tea Party leader.
James Eric Fuller, 63, who was shot in the knee, had told The Post on Friday, the day before his arrest, that top Republican figures should be tortured -- and their ears severed.
"There would be torture and then an ear necklace, with [Minnesota US Rep.] Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin's ears toward the end, because they're small, female ears, and then Limbaugh, Hannity and the biggest ears of all, Cheney's, in the center," Fuller said.
As I said the other day, Fuller proves something very important:
If you are a victim in such an incident, you are not a hero.
If you are a victim in such an incident, you are not a saint.
If you are a victim in such an incident, you are not an expert on society's problems.
If you are a victim in such an incident, you are not even necessarily a decent human being.
This one directed against Pandagon's Amanda Marcotte by the distinguished blogger at Right Turns Only.
As you can see, Marcotte doesnít torture logic, so much as run it through a woodchipper and then smoke the remains in a water bong.
Good man, good life. May his loved ones be comforted.
R. Sargent Shriver, who was responsible for launching the U.S. Peace Corps after marrying into the Kennedy family and joining John F. Kennedy's White House, has died, a family source told CNN.
Shriver, whose full name was Robert Sargent Shriver Jr., was 95. He had suffered for years from Alzheimer's disease.
After overseeing the Peace Corps launch in the early 1960s, Shriver went on to serve subsequent presidential administrations and kept up his activism throughout his life, becoming a chief architect of President Lyndon B. Johnson's war on poverty and later heading the Special Olympics, which was founded by his wife, Eunice Kennedy Shriver.
It is the tomb of Caligula -- one of the more unusual Roman emperors.
The lost tomb of Caligula has been found, according to Italian police, after the arrest of a man trying to smuggle abroad a statue of the notorious Roman emperor recovered from the site.
After reportedly sleeping with his sisters, killing for pleasure and seeking to appoint his horse a consul during his rule from AD37 to 41, Caligula was described by contemporaries as insane.
With many of Caligula's monuments destroyed after he was killed by his Praetorian guard at 28, archaeologists are eager to excavate for his remains.
Cops caught the perps trying to haul away loot from a previously unknown archaeological site near one of Caligulaís residences. Evidence now indicates that it is the tomb of the assassinated emperor himself.
This one promises to be utterly fascinating.
No Ė it is about preserving the fat paychecks of the union bosses.
United Auto Workers President Bob King told members tonight the unionís very survival is at stake in its efforts to organize foreign workers ó and said it has limited options in contract talks with Detroitís Big Three.
ďIf we donít organize these transnationals, I donít think thereís a long term future for the UAW ó I really donít,Ē King told more than 1,000 members and retirees at the opening of a four-day political action conference in Washington.
It is about the survival of the jobs of the union leadership, who otherwise would be forced back onto the floor of the auto companies doing something other than shaking down the bosses and hobnobbing with the liberal elite. So when the union thugs come waving union cards, autoworkers should refuse to sign them Ė that effectively tells Bob King and those like him that they are fired.
Like this one, targeting a businessman.
The head of the SEIU purple people beaters attacked Sarah Palin for her target map. He feared it might incite violence.
But, that was Sarah Palin. The SEIU itself is perfectly willing to incite violence to serve its purposes.
Walmart is building a store in Washington, D.C. A company called Pratt Development is leasing land to Walmart for the store.
A group called ďWal-Mart Free DCĒ, a union group that has SEIU involvement, is circulating a flier with the home address of Dick Knapp, the head of Pratt Development, to send people out to protest and intimidate him.
But it must be OK. After all, these are folks from the Left, and they never engage in inflammatory rhetoric or acts of violence. Besides Ė thereís a smile inside the target. That surely makes everything just peachy-keen and hunky-dory.
Many folks are focusing on the MLK story in this interview with Star Trekís Nichelle Nichols. Iím not Ė it is a story that has circulated for years and there really is not much to add to it.
Instead, I find this bit of the interview much more interesting.
What did you think of doing sci-fi? Seems much different than theater.
I was thrilled by the opportunity, but I didnít know what the role was until I walked into the room for the interview. They handed me a script and told me to read the part of Spock.
Had you ever seen the show?
No, I asked them what Spock was like, her composure, demeanor. They stopped and looked at me as if I had grown two heads. When I finished reading, Bob Justman [producer] said to call down and see if Nimoy has signed his contract yet.
Imagine Ė rather than Shatner and Nimoy as the central characters, it could have been Shatner and Nichols. Black and white. Male and female. And given the Vulcan ethos that was put into place, the relationship would have been platonic, devoid of any sexual tension Ė at least on the surface. Imagine the possibilities of an African-American in that role, rather than the showís main African-American figure being relegated to a much less central role. It would have been a much more exciting advance for African-Americans in television Ė and society Ė if the network would have allowed for it. Imagine, indeed, the possibilities. They are, to use a word, ďFascinating.Ē
Our country has been steadily breaking faith with its veterans for decades now, reducing the benefits they were promised drip by drip. This has been especially true of the treatment received by military retirees.
Now the Obama Regime wants to make it harder for these men and women to get jobs by making them more expensive fore employers to hire.
Weíve seen a lot of counterproductive ideas over the years. But few have been so half-baked as the proposal by the presidentís National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform to make civilian employers reimburse the Pentagon for health care costs incurred by their retired military employees who use TRICARE. ...
Thatís about as perverse a system as I can imagine. First, make servicemembers endure 10 years of the worst wartime sacrifices in generations. Then reward their sacrifices by purposely impeding their chances for post-service employment in the worst job market in decades.
Itís in vogue in the new Congress to rail against ďjob-killingĒ programs. If you want to kill post-service job opportunities for military retirees ó and deter good people from serving military careers to boot ó could there be a more creative way than making civilian employers pay a stiff annual fine for every military retiree they hire?
Time for our new Congress to step in and deliver a slap upside the head to the occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and his minions at the DoD. Don't mess with out military heroes, Barry.
H/T Sense of Events
Just imagine the outrage if a supposedly mainstream group did this to a statue of Martin Luther King, not George Washington.
I think this speaks for itself, so I'll let it stand without comment.
Looks like they had a serious police chase in Riyadh.
Saudi Arabiaís feared Islamic police wreaked havoc in the streets of the Gulf Kingdomís capital on Sunday during an exciting chase of a bare-footed woman, a newspaper reported on Monday.
Three members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice pushed their four-wheel car on the pavement and headed in the wrong direction of a busy road before they got off the vehicle and chased the woman on foot through the streets of Riyadh, Sharq Arabic language daily said.
ďHundreds of people stopped to watch the chase of the unknown woman, who was bare-footedÖ..the Authority members caused chaos on the roads by chasing the unknown woman,Ē it said.
ďShe kept running away, prompting them later to call in a back-upÖit was an exciting chase but the crowd did not know how it ended.Ē
Imagine the sort of chaos that would have ensued had she exposed her face in public -- there would have undoubtedly been a SWAT team stand-off.
A regularly scheduled event took place in the Tucson area over the weekend -- a gun show that happens five times a year.
So why, when a New York paper reports on it, does it get this headline?
Too bad they didn't bother to report on the event fairly and neutrally. It would have been refreshing. And frighteningly atypical of the MSM.
But then again, maybe this is just a case of newspaper nuts showing off, exercising their First Amendment rights by pimping those dead at the hands of a deranged man.
There is one heck of a post up over at Noisy Room, one I encourage everyone to read. In particular, I like the suggested "rules of engagement" (oh my -- one of those scary terms with military significance) for conservatives in the ongoing battle (yep, another one those uncivil words that provokes violence) against our political enemies (ditto) and their dangerous ideology.
A few rules of engagement can put an end to business as usual in the election process:
1. Choose our own candidates. There is no use for Congressional campaign committees. These ďcommitteesĒ only serve to perpetuate themselves. They want to choose the candidates then instruct us how to vote. They will give any money they receive to the candidates of their choice, not ours. The only money they have is that contributed by the people. Dry up their source of their funds and we eliminate their influence and effectiveness.
2. Send our money directly to the candidates of our choice. There is no reason to pay the expenses of various groups claiming to represent us in the electoral process. This includes Tea Party groups with large operating expenses. One Tea Party leader, who has gained national attention, made the statement, ďI can make a million dollars off this movement.Ē There is no place for such individuals and organizations in a grass roots movement.
3. Ignore the recommendations of the main stream media. They have their own agenda. They will often build up and recommend the opponent they consider the easiest to defeat. They cannot be trusted and their influence in elections must be ignored. Listen only to the candidate and check out his or her background and/or voting record. If they pass Constitutional and conservative muster, then support them with money and volunteer efforts. Then let them know that ďWe the PeopleĒ will be watching.
4. Vote. The key to every election is turnout. Only about 60% of the nation will exercise their right to vote. If 100% of the Patriots show up at the polling places we can remove the garbage and restore our nation. It is not enough to just claim the title of Patriot. We must walk the walk as well.
I especially like that last point. Those who show up and vote are the ones with the power to win. Those who stay home guarantee that their voices won't be heard. And ultimately, it is not national committees and organizations that should be deciding who you vote for -- it should be you, based upon your own research and conscience.
And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today!
I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of "interposition" and "nullification" -- one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today!
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; "and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together."¬≤
This is our hope, and this is the faith that I go back to the South with.
With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
And this will be the day -- this will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new meaning:
My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.
Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim's pride,
From every mountainside, let freedom ring!
And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true.
And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.
Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.
Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of
Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado.
Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.
But not only that:
Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.
Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee.
Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.
From every mountainside, let freedom ring.
And when this happens, when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:
Free at last! Free at last!
Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!
I posted this one four years ago -- but somehow it seems fitting to repost it this year.
MLK Day stands alone as the one national holiday not commercialized, trivialized, or ignored.
Think about it.
Christmas should be the first thing that leaps to mind -- over-hyped holiday sales and ACLU-enforced secularization of the day so that any hint that "Christ" and "Christmas" are somehow connected will bring a lawsuit down upon you faster than you can say "Kris Kringle".
Presidents Day? George and Abe get trotted out to promote sales, when they are not overshadowed by hearts and Cupids.
Memorial Day? It has long since quit being a memorialization of the slain and degenerated into "Swimming Pools Are Open Day". Yeah, we still have some obligatory wreath-layings, but the only thing most folks are trying to remember on the last Monday of May is who has the pole position at the Indy 500 and if there are enough bratwursts to let Cousin Lenny have a third one.
The Fourth of July, for all its patriotic overtones, is really "National Fireworks Day". And Labor Day is "Back To School Sale Day" for most folks.
Columbus Day? Ignored to placate the PC crowd, or yet another excuse for a sale at some brave retail outlets. Nothing closes that I can think of. And sadly, even in the midst of war, Veterans Day is equally ignored.
Thanksgiving is still a feast, but in most households it is little more than an excuse to overindulge while watching football and planning which "Black Friday" sales to hit at dawn (or even at midnight, if you shop at Wal-Mart).
But I know it won't last. Not for much longer, as we move further on from the lifetime of this American icon.
And every year, I have the nightmare.
I'm watching television, and they hit a commercial break. Some loud pitchman shouts out at me about the great bargains his store is offering to honor the slain civil rights leader. And I awake in horror, with the concluding words of the dream-commercial still ringing in my ears.
Free at last!
Free at last!
Buy one get one
Free at last!
Let us hope this remains only a nightmare -- and that we can restore a sense of honor and reverence to all our holidays.
It appears that the right side of thins has prevailed -- at least to Glen Busch's satisfaction.
To whom it may concern, January 15, 2011
The issue between myself and the Coats For Kids Foundation has been resolved. I have been offered back my position as the director of the Chicago office. I have accepted this offer and I am very happy to do so. This has been a very difficult time for all of us and I am thankful it can now be put to rest.
I further ask that everyone who reads this can accept that people sometimes make mistakes and what is truly important is how we respond to them. I am very satisfied with how the response from the foundation has been and I hold no ill will towards anyone involved. This issue will help us grow, learn, and become better people for having walked through it. I personally ask that those who have hesitated in supporting this cause over this last week join us as we rebuild the good will and reputation of this great cause as we move forward on behalf of others.
CFK is a 100% volunteer organization and over 95% of all donations received go directly to the purchase, transportation and distribution of brand new winter coats to children all across the United States. To date WE have distributed over 38,000 coats to those in the most need among us. We look forward to continuing this effort until every child is warm.
Glen Busch, Director
Coats For Kids-Chicago
If it is settled to Glen's satisfaction, it is settled to mine. I therefore call off my war on Paul Darby and the organization he heads.
ORIGINAL POST-- January 14, 2011:
Coats for Kids was once a fine charity that people of good will could support.
It is not anymore.
You won't believe his offense -- it was a conversation on Facebook where he had the audacity to say that Jared Loughner was a madman not motivated by right-wing hate speech.
Jumping into a thread with friends discussing the possible politics behind the attack, Busch wrote:
" This was not a political thing, it was a psychotic thing. This kid was nuts! Now lets drop the ink wars and pray for the families. Maybe apologize in public just like your accusations as well? I'm just saying."
When the shooter, Jared Loughner, was identified Busch posted "Now that we know that this kid was an extreme socialist and democrat, does that change some of the opinions? Guys look, this is not political, he's just crazy. I do not hold liberals responsible for this now that the facts are known."
But his boss Paul Darby, the president of the national chapter of Coats for Kids, didn't like it. Glen says he called the next day severing Glen's involvement in the organization saying the posts were too radical and political.
Too radical and political? You must be joking.
But since Paul Darby decided to take sides in this issue, it is incumbent upon all Americans who value fair play and moral decency to withdraw support for Coats for Kids as long as Darby works for the group and Busch does not. After all, Darby decided to take sides in this dispute and fire a guy for defending those unjustly attacked as co-conspirators with the assassin.
Glen Busch's comments were not "too radical and political". Paul Darby's actions were. But then again, what do you expect from a guy who has given over $16K to Democrat candidates in recent years?
There are plenty of decent organizations through which we can help kids -- too bad that Coats for Kids is no longer one.
Well, it looks like one of the victims of the Tucson atrocity perpetrated by a deranged man with incoherent, somewhat left-wing political views has now been arrested for threatening the life of a leader of the Tea Party movement who was speaking at a public forum.
When Tucson Tea Party founder Trent Humphries rose to suggest that any conversation about gun control should be put off until after the funerals for all the victims, witnesses say [J. Eric] Fuller became agitated. Two told KGUN9 News that finally, Fuller took a picture of Humphries, and said, ďYouíre dead.Ē
Now I could point out that Fuller is a left-wing political activist who has been spreading the falsehood that certain individuals and groups on the right are responsible for the Tucson shooting. I could point out that the has been lauded by many on the Left as a hero for doing so. I could try to draw a connection between Fuller and Daily Kos, Paul Krugman, various liberal talk show hosts and certain Democrat political figures. I could probably make a better case for a direct, contemporaneous connection between Fuller and such folks than anyone on the Left made between Jared Loughner and the conservatives accused of inciting him by those individuals. But I won't.
No, instead i will simply say what I pointed out after Fuller's initial public statement attacking conservatives -- he is proof positive that being the victim of such an atrocity does not make you a saint. It does not make you a hero, especially if you were merely a bystander. It does not make one an expert on the causes of and solutions to such events. Indeed, as Fuller's deeds make very clear, being a victim in such an incident does not even make you a decent human being -- and Fuller's death threat against an innocent man engaged in First Amendment guaranteed speech about important political issues proves that Fuller is most certainly not a decent human being by any stretch of the imagination. Here's hoping he gets locked up for a good long time.
And who knows? Maybe J. Eric Fuller and Jared Loughner can be cellmates. After all, the men are clearly two crazy peas from the same loony pod.
UPDATE: Robbie at Urban Grounds points out that some on the Left are excusing/justifying Fuller's death threat. I guess we know what constitutes civility if you are a Leftist -- vitriolic liberals and silenced conservatives.
Definitely this play.
Only one guy kept the eye on the ball and his head in the game. The result? A touchdown.
And especially sweet is the fact that he's one of my former students -- and a good guy off the field. Nicely done, Cory!
Charles Blow has a column in today's New York Times that is, for him, moderate and reasonable. He dares to criticize those who, in the aftermath of the Tucson shooting, rushed to judgment as to the responsibility and began what he aptly calls a witch hunt against voices on the right.
Within hours of the shooting, there was a full-fledged witch hunt to link the shooter to the right.
ďI saw Goody Proctor with the devil! Oh, I mean Jared Lee Loughner! Yes him. With the devil!Ē
The only problem is that there was no evidence then, and even now, that overheated rhetoric from the right had anything to do with the shooting. (In fact, a couple of people who said they knew him have described him as either apolitical or ďquite liberal.Ē) The picture emerging is of a sad and lonely soul slowly, and publicly, slipping into insanity.
I have written about violent rhetoric before, and Iím convinced that itís poisonous to our politics, that the preponderance of it comes from the right, and that it has the potential to manifest in massacres like the one in Tucson.
But I also know that potential, possibility and even plausibility are not proof.
Perfectly reasonable words, even if i disagree with many of his assertions. And this former English teacher particularly likes the reference to The Crucible.
Unfortunately, something was missing.
I tried to comment on the post, in order to point out the problem -- but the comment was not approved. So here is what the New York Times and Charles Blow did not want you to read.
I rarely, if ever, agree with you. Indeed, I consider you to often be guilty of the same sort of race-baiting hate speech that you accuse your opponents of, merely cloaked in the faux-intellectual dress of a columnist at one of the most liberal papers in America. But you got this one right.
Too bad you didn't have the integrity to name and shame the guilty in this case, as you seem to think is appropriate when the guilty are your ideological opponents rather than your friends and colleagues. Why not mention that one of the worst offenders has been Paul Krugman, with whom you share the NY Times opinion page? Would that excursion into intellectual honesty have been unacceptable to your editors and owners -- or merely a source of awkwardness at the next opinion staff cocktail party?
Yep -- pointing the finger at one of the worst perpetrators will get you blackballed, if that person is an employee of the New York Times. Too bad they didn't see the need to exercise similar restraint in naming Palin and others as guilty parties a week ago -- or in allowing commenters to do after Blow's column.
Here are the results of this week's celebration of blogging excellence by the Watcher's of Weasels:
If the states canít protect workersí right to a secret ballot, they can at least protect a worker from having to join an organization that engages in coercive techniques to compel membership.
Under the 1935 National Labor Relations Act, private-sector employees have two ways to choose a union: They may vote in a secret-ballot election conducted by the NLRB, or they may persuade an employer to voluntarily recognize a union after showing majority support by signed authorization cards or other means.
The state amendments prohibit the second method and therefore interfere with the exercise of a well-established federally-protected right. For that reason, they are preempted by the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Ö
That way, after the union thugs have broken enough kneecaps and threatened enough family members to become the official bargaining agent of the workers, individuals who reject these organized criminal conspiracies against individual freedom will still have the legal protection they need to give the union bosses the bird.
It is right there in the Sixth Amendment Ė ďIn all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial. . .Ē
So why this response from a prosecutor when indicted County Commissioner Jerry Eversole demands a speedy trial?
Federal prosecutors opposed severing the trials and lifting the no-contact order imposed by the magistrate who arraigned Eversole and Surface. Because the defendants' friendship is central to the case, prosecutor John Pearson said, the two should stay apart except in the presence of their attorneys.
Pearson said separating the trials "would be a massive waste of resources" that would mean, essentially, holding the same trial twice.
Yeah, Mr. Pearson, it would mean holding the same trial twice. However, Mr. Eversole has invoked his constitutional rights, while his co-defendant, Mr. Surface, has asked for the trial to be delayed. Eversoleís rights are not trumped by Surfaceís Ė or by the budgetary concerns.
And besides, the people of Harris County have a stake in this as well Ė if Eversole is, in fact, guilty as charged, we have every right to have him gone and ever reason to want him out of office so that we can have confidence that our county government is not corrupt.
What do you call a white politician with a black adopted son who honors family commitments and deceased police officers instead of attending a special interest groupís event? A racist, of course -- or at least insensitive.
Which is why I like the response of said politician.
Gov. Paul LePage this morning told reporters that the NAACP can "kiss my butt" in response to questions about why he is not attending Martin Luther King Jr. events on Monday.
Before a meeting with business leaders, LePage called the civil rights group "a special interest" and said if they wanted to meet with his Jamacian son they could.
"Tell 'em to kiss my butt," he told the TV station. "If they want to play the race card, come to dinner and my son will talk to them."
Excuse me, but the NAACP doesnít get to set the governorís schedule. And if the governor chooses to honor his family and a member of law enforcement rather than their event, that is just too damn bad. Lots of groups donít get the governor on their schedule when they issue an invitation, so the NAACP gets to see how the rest of the world gets treated on a regular basis. And that, my friends, is called ďequalityĒ. It would be nice if that special interest group would get back to promoting that value.
Seems to me that the greed factor has gotten way out of hand.
Want to go the Super Bowl without having to pay the exorbitant costs associated the luxuries of having a seat or actually being inside the stadium? Then, boy, does the NFL have a deal for you!
The league announced plans on Thursday to sell standing-room tickets to fans that will allow them to stand outside Cowboys Stadium to watch the Super Bowl on a large video screen. They're calling it the "party plaza" because that sounds a lot better than "place where saps can pay money to stand outside craning their necks to watch video of a game going on 300 yards away and then go to work the next day claiming they went to the game."
Tickets to stand outside and watch on television? Are you kidding me? Good grief!
And as stupid as the question is, the results are even more troubling.
CBS News, seizing upon the zeitgeist, one supposes, had a new poll out Tuesday night which Iíve just seen now. In it they ask respondents whether they think there is a right to violent action against the government. The question is phrased thus:ďDo you think it is ever justified for citizens to take violent action against the government, or is it never justified?Ē
Why ask this question, unless there is a desire to ďstir things upĒ in the wake of the shooting incident in Tucson?
But since they asked the question, I think the results should concern us.
Then, of course, the responses are broken down by party affiliation. Surprise: while just eleven percent of Democrats and eleven percent of independents believe it is ever justified to take violent action against the government, fully 28 percent of Republicans do. It doesnít surprise me that there would be a poll trying to put the smell of blood in the water given the climate of the last week. But what does surprise me is that 76 percent of respondents, including 64 percent of Republicans, think it is never right to take up arms against the government. Ever.
That was not an earthquake you just felt. That was each and every one of the Founding Fathers rolling over in their respective graves, tombs and crypts upon learning that the American people have abandoned the principles that were led them to declare independence. Sweet Martha Washingtonís bloomers! Three-quarters of Americans now opine that the very sort of actions taken by the founding generation were illegitimate and never acceptable. So much for these stirring words by Thomas Jefferson, found in the same paragraph as the stirring declaration that all of us have the rights of live, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism,
it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government,and to provide new Guards for their future security.
In other words, our country is founded on the notion that we have the right and duty to engage in violent action to get rid of tyrannical government. That three-quarters of Americans have repudiated that heritage is a disgrace. If America still retained the spirit that animated the Founding, then three-quarters (or more) would have forthrightly declare that yes, it is indeed acceptable for citizens to take violent action against the government. After all, as Iíve pointed out here in the past, we are the Revolution People Ė and while in this time and place we should be seeking revolution by peaceful, democratic means, each and every one of us ought to forthrightly declare that We The People reserve the right to take up arms and overthrow the government by violence should the proper situation arise. After all, just because the NOW is not a time when it is right to engage in acts of violence against the government, that does not mean that it is NEVER the right time.
Such incidents are happening more and more often.
EL PASO, Texas -- Hudspeth County, Texas Sheriff Arvin West confirmed a Hudspeth County road crew came under fire Thursday morning from gunmen in Mexico.
Sheriff West told ABC-7 that around 10:30 a.m, Thursday a road crew was repairing a part of Indian Hot Springs road, just east of Neely's crossing in Hudspeth County along the US-Mexico border when they came under gunfire from the Mexican side.
The crew was able to escape unharmed and managed to call for help. Units from the Texas Department of Public Safety, Border Patrol and Hudspeth County sheriff's deputies responded within minutes. They were able to determine the shots came from the Mexican side of the Rio Grande but were unable to spot the actual gunmen.
While this is the first incident of county work crew getting shot at in this location, we keep seeing incidents of cross-border crime. Seems to me that there are two options available here
Well, there is a third option which is utterly unacceptable -- allow the border to remain unenforced and cross-border crime to continue unchecked. Unfortunately, that appears to be the policy of the Obama Administration. And so Americans will continue to be the victims of cross-border crime, and the international criminals will continue to go unpunished.
And I, for one, welcome this development.
Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison announced today that she will retire at the end of her current term, quashing speculation that she would run for a fourth full term in the U.S. Senate.
In an open letter to Texans, Hutchison said she wanted to live "full-time in Texas with my family" and was "forever grateful for the privilege of working for you in the United States Senate."
Hutchison's announcement will set off a wild scramble for the Senate seat the Dallas Republican first won in a 1993 special election against interim Sen. Bob Krueger, D-New Braunfels.
Hutchison said her early announcement "should give the people of Texas ample time to consider who my successor will be."
And let the scrambling begin.
Some folks are looking to Lt. Gov. Dewhurst to make a run for the seat. At least that is the word from the Washington Post. But just based upon what we saw this past spring, there are a number of GOP candidates ready, willing and able to run -- Secretary of State Roger Williams, Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams, Railroad Commission Elizabeth Ames Jones and state Sen. Florence Shapiro. Personally, I back Michael Williams, but recognize that any of the contenders would be a good choice for Texas. Dewhurst does have advantages, though Ė name recognition and the ability to self-finance a campaign to an extent that would allow him to blow his opponents away in both the primary and general election. Another wild-card would be Governor Perry himself Ė after all, he has served as governor longer than anyone in state history, and the odds of his being reelected to the post in 2014 after 14 years as governor are virtually nil. Being the junior senator from Texas would give him a public spotlight and help set him up for an eventual presidential run And that, my friends, is the very thing that many have speculated is Gov. Goodhairís ultimate goal.
Sarah Palinís use of the charged term ďblood libelĒ may not have been an accidental blunder, but a deliberate ďĎdog whistleĒ appeal to her evangelical Christian supporters for whom the expression has meaning, commentators and others are saying.
The term is ďdog whistleĒ.
First, when did this term come into vogue in our political lexicon? Iíve seen it more and more of late, but donít remember when I first saw it.
Second, I find it offensive. Iíve never seen it used except in a pejorative manner and except in reference to messages that are supposedly directed by conservative leaders to conservative followers Ė and the message is invariably presented as somehow nefarious in nature. The implication that we conservatives are somehow less than human , easily led, and somehow unsavory is implicit.
Third, why is it that the only folks who hear these ďdog whistlesĒ appear to be liberals, who dutifully inform conservatives (and the rest of the world) about the evil messages lurking below the surface of their opponentsí messages?
My high school students could see through this one.
Media Matters founder David Brock appeared on Hardball and revealed to Chris Matthews his allegation that ďGlenn Beck himself has been responsible for three thwarted assassination attempts this year.Ē Brock listed three occurrences where a crazed assassin targeted a liberal politician or institution, and where evidence later emerged that the assassin may have been a viewer of Beckís show.
Anyone with a decent education and a knowledge of logic would have picked up on the problems with this one.
Interestingly enough, both of these were topics covered in my psychology class today as we talked about statistics, correlation, and causality. One of my students actually made the connection between these two concepts and the response to the Arizona shooting completely out of the blue. I must tell you Ė I was proud. And a little chagrined that I hadnít put the pieces together myself over the last few days.
I know the term has certain historical sensitivities. And Iíll concede that I would have preferred that a different term be used. But I also agree with this point by Jonathon Tobin regarding Palinís use of the term.
[T] he claim that Palin has crossed some bright line in the sand and "stolen" a phrase that has always and should always be used to describe only one thing is absurd. Like so much else that has been heard from the left in the wake of the shootings in Arizona, this further charge against Sarah Palin is groundless. The fact is, those who are trying to link her or other conservatives to this crime are, in fact, committing a kind of blood libel. Take issue with her politics or dislike her personality if that is your inclination, but the idea that she has even the most remote connection to this event is outrageous. So, too, is the manufactured controversy over "blood libel."
Similarly, Alan Dershowitz makes the point about how the term has come to be used over the years.
The term "blood libel" is now used to characterise any false accusation that relates to the killing of human beings. Sarah Palin was accused of being responsible for the death and wounding of multiple human beings. She reasonably believes that accusation to be false in fact and politically inspired. She is entitled, in my view, to use the term "blood libel" in the context of an accusation of responsibility for bloodletting, without regard to the religion or ethnicity of the perpetrator, the victims, the accusers or the accused.
Other terms the he points to are ďcrucifixionĒ and ďcrusadeĒ being co-opted from their original meaning for political purposes.
In the end, the term ďblood libelĒ is not inapt in this case, given the more expansive use of the term in recent years. After all, it has come to refer to the notion that someone would sacrifice the innocent. That is precisely what Sarah Palin has been accused of for the last several days. There is absolutely nothing wrong with her challenging the false accusation Ė and those who want to play semantic games with her statement are attempting to deflect attention from their own guilt in perpetrating the false accusation.
Just imagine -- five days of voices on the Left and in the media trying to affix blame for the Tucson shooting have had the effect of promoting violence.
An aide close to Sarah Palin says death threats and security threats have increased to an unprecedented level since the shooting in Arizona, and the former Alaska governorís team has been talking to security professionals.
Are we surprised by this? Hardly. After all, Palin has been directly and indirectly called an accomplice to murder so many times in the last few days that it is no surprise that the death threats have increased. And this points out the fundamental difference between her rather mainstream message and the extreme vitriolic rhetoric of her opponents -- after all, there is a big difference between messages that target your opponents for electoral defeat and those which explicitly countenance your opponent's death. After all, no Palin fan ever set up a Facebook group that explicitly hoped for the death of Congresswoman Giffords or any of the other members of Congress in targeted districts -- but there is still a group called "I hate it when I wake up and Sarah Palin is still alive" operating on that social networking site. How long would a group called "I hate it when I wake up and Barack Obama is still alive" be allowed to operate (even with a cutesy disclaimer like this one has that says it in no way advocates assassination)? But I guess since it comes from the left, it qualifies as civil, non-vitriolic speech.
I didn't watch the event live, but I did read over the transcript. Personally, I find this line to be a stunning rebuke to those who have spent the last several days trying to tie this atrocity to conservative voices in the media and politics.
Bad things happen, and we must guard against simple explanations in the aftermath.
For the truth is that none of us can know exactly what triggered this vicious attack. None of us can know with any certainty what might have stopped those shots from being fired, or what thoughts lurked in the inner recesses of a violent manís mind.
So yes, we must examine all the facts behind this tragedy. We cannot and will not be passive in the face of such violence. We should be willing to challenge old assumptions in order to lessen the prospects of violence in the future.
But what we canít do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on one another. As we discuss these issues, let each of us do so with a good dose of humility. Rather than pointing fingers or assigning blame, let us use this occasion to expand our moral imaginations, to listen to each other more carefully, to sharpen our instincts for empathy, and remind ourselves of all the ways our hopes and dreams are bound together.
Frankly, it seems to me that Obama and/or his speechwriters must have been reading my blog. He resisted the temptation, indulged in by too many on the Left and in the media, to place the blame for the deranged on the political rhetoric of his opponents. He recognized that he is, first and foremost, the President of the United States, not the President of the Democrats. In resisting the urge to scapegoat the opposition, Barack Obama followed the better angels of his nature. He also embraced the values and principles that underlie our political system, and the reality of the public dialogue that has existed since the first days of the Republic. I applaud him for doing so, and hope that the various liberal constituencies that look to him as a leader will take those words to heart.
On the other hand, I do find this to be a bit weird.
Now I don't know the source of these shirts, so I'm going to resist the urge to blast Obama or his surrogates for politicizing the memorial service. But whoever is responsible, I'd argue that the shirts detracted from the solemnity of the event. After all, if you are going to memorialize the dead, it seems to me that they should be included in some way on the shirt. This just seems to be about the optics of the event, not the solemnity and the purpose behind it. Someone made a bad call here, even if they had the best of intentions.
Tucson must be the fault of the Right. Right?
And so it is perfectly fine to look for out-of-context words from conservatives in order to condemn their incivility and place the blame for the Tucson Atrocity on their shoulders.
You know, like this example of the finely-honed art of context-chopping from the despicable Paul Krugman:
Where's that toxic rhetoric coming from? Let's not make a false pretense of balance: it's coming, overwhelmingly, from the right. It's hard to imagine a Democratic member of Congress urging constituents to be "armed and dangerous" without being ostracized; but Representative Michele Bachmann, who did just that, is a rising star in the G.O.P.
Looks damning -- until you actually drill down and look at the quote. That is something Krugman isn't honest enough to do for his readers -- after all, context-chopping involves making sure your readers have no idea that your victim actually said this.
Iím going to have materials for people when they leave. I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax, because we need to fight back.
Oh dear! She did say her constituents should be "armed and dangerous" -- "armed" with facts and therefore "dangerous" to those seeking to sell America a bill of goods in that particular piece of legislation. Nothing in the context of Bachmann's words could be seen as a call to violence at all. And so lest we be confused, Krugman simply dispensed with the words that would render his contention obviously wrong.
Most folks would call such work blatantly dishonest. but when you are a Nobel Prize winning economist working for one of the nation's most prestigious newspapers, it is merely called "editing". And that his editors let that little bit of dishonesty slip by? Well, he is Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winning economist and noted NY Times columnist -- who are they to interfere? After all, he's smarter than us and knows what is good for the American people. And if withholding the truth from Americans to make his larger point is something he thinks is necessary, who are we to argue?
As I recall, the "divine right" theory of government went out of style in this country somewhere around 1776.
Unfortunately, Mayor Geraldine Sam of La Marque, Texas apparently did not get the memo, and so is unclear on who she actually works for.
When Geraldine Sam was elected mayor two years ago, she got 355 votes in a three-way race. On Tuesday, residents looking to oust Sam from office delivered 52 petitions with 1,019 signatures calling for a recall of the mayor.>
* * *
If at least 490 signatures are verified, Sam will at first be given the opportunity to resign.
The mayor said that wonít happen.
ďIf God wants me in office, I will be in office,Ē Sam said. ďGod was the one who placed me in office, and God will be the one who will take me out.Ē
If the mayor does not resign, a recall election would be in May.
No, Mayor Sam -- the People put you into office, and the people have made it pretty clear that they want you gone. If you were truly interested in the good of your city, you would have offered your resignation prior to things coming to this point -- and the fact that triple the number of residents who voted for you are now calling for your removal from office should make that clear. That you think you are mayor by divine right is enough to get me to support for this recall effort.
Well, that would explain this headline.
Harris Co. police: Guinea pig 'Fatty McFatFat' tortured with bleach
Not to make light of animal cruelty, of course, but it isnít often that the home page includes crimes against guinea pigs.
Oh, yeah Ė the perp also used a knife to threaten his young nieces and nephews before pouring bleach on their pet. I guess they just arenít as cute, nor are their names as amusing, as the guinea pig. Thatís why they donít get mentioned until the fifth paragraph. After all Ė it is a matter of priorities.
As I noted the other day, those members of Congress who seek to use this weekendís events to pin a target on the First Amendment or Second Amendment rights of Americans will have also pinned a target on themselves come election time. Sadly, the latest to do so is Representative Peter King, an otherwise conservative member of Congress.
Rep. Peter King, a Republican from New York, is planning to introduce legislation that would make it illegal to bring a gun within 1,000 feet of a government official, according to a person familiar with the congressman's intentions.
Congressman, Iíll be sending cash to your primary challenger and encouraging others to do the same. After all, if you wonít trust us with our rights, we canít trust you with the powers of your office.
I guess that means that Alec Baldwinís Senate run is DOA.
After all, this trumps anything said by anyone on the Right.
Alec Baldwin: ďI was in Africa. I go to Africa. I mean ladies and gentlemen I am in Africa. For three months I am in the bush and I come back. I come back here and I come back to what? I mean what is happening right now as we speak? Right now the Judiciary Committee, the President has an approval rating of 68 percent. The President is very popular and things are going pretty good and they are voting to impeach the President. They voted on one article of impeachment already. And I come back from Africa to stained dresses and cigars and this and impeachment. I am thinking to myself in other countries they are laughing at us twenty four hours a day and Iím thinking to myself if we were in other countries, we would all right now, all of us together, [starts to shout] all of us together would go down to Washington and we would stone Henry Hyde to death! We would stone him to death! [crowd cheers] Wait! Shut up! Shut up! No shut up! Iím not finished. We would stone Henry Hyde to death and we would go to their homes and weíd kill their wives and their children. We would kill their families. [stands up screaming] What is happening in this country? What is happening? UGHHH UGHHH!!!!Ē
Surely we canít have a purveyor of this sort of violent political rhetoric serving in the Senate. Or can we? After all, he is planning on running as a Democrat.
Jared Loughner has been making death threats by phone to many people in Pima County including staff of Pima Community College, radio personalities and local bloggers. When Pima County Sheriffís Office was informed, his deputies assured the victims that he was being well managed by the mental health system. It was also suggested that further pressing of charges would be unnecessary and probably cause more problems than it solved as Jared Loughner has a family member that works for Pima County. Amy Loughner is a Natural Resource specialist for the Pima County Parks and Recreation. My sympathies and my heart goes out to her and the rest of Mr. Loughnerís family. This tragedy must be tearing them up inside wondering if they had done the right things in trying to manage Jaredís obvious mental instability.
Every victim of his threats previously must also be wondering if this tragedy could have been prevented if they had been more aggressive in pursuing charges against Mr. Loughner. Perhaps with a felony conviction he would never have been able to lawfully by the Glock 9mm Model 19 that he used to strike down the lives of six people and decimate 14 more.
This was not an act of politics. This was an act of a mentally disturbed young man hell bent on getting his 15 minutes of infamy. The Pima County Sheriffís Department was aware of his violent nature and they failed to act appropriately. This tragedy leads right back to Sherriff Dupnik and all the spin in the world is not going to change that fact.
Multiple death threats, but no criminal charges? And now the incompetent government agency who refused to make an arrest over this individualís bizarre criminal behavior are front and center in investigating this incident Ė and the guy in charge of the incompetent agency is parceling out blame to individuals and groups totally unrelated to the foul deeds perpetrated by the maniac they left running loose on the street? Incredible!
Seems to me that there really is one course of action to be followed here. Gov. Brewer needs to step in and suspend Sheriff Dipstick from office pending a full investigation of the Pima County Sheriffís Office and its handling of Jared Loughner in the days, weeks, months and YEARS leading up to the murderous rampage of January 8. Lawsuits need to be prepared and filed by the victims and their survivors, because Loughnerís actions were the direct and foreseeable consequence of the Pima County Sheriffís Officeís history of showing favoritism to Jared Loughner and his family because of his parentsí employment by Pima County. Lastly, the Pima County Sheriffís Office needs to be completely reorganized and placed in the hands of competent professionals Ė which means that Deputy Dawg must be defeated at the polls in 2012.
Speaking words of wisdom...
The Texas House Republican Caucus overwhelming endorsed incumbent Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, this afternoon for another term despite loud protests from tea party groups that insisted on a more conservative leader.
Straus received 70 votes from 100 members attending the caucus meeting. The vote is non-binding, but virtually guarantees Straus' reelection Tuesday when the Texas Legislature opens a new session.
As far as I am concerned, that means the matter is over and done, with the issue settled. So having received a press release from Ken Paxton announcing that he intends to still be a candidate for Speaker tomorrow, I'd like to pass the following message on to him.
Does this mean I am a Straus backer? By no means. I remain disturbed by how he became Speaker two years ago. I'm disturbed by how the campaign to keep the office has been conducted by Straus and his cronies. And I plan on working to see that we have more conservative leadership in the Texas House in 2013. But having received essentially what we asked for, I'll abide by the results of the caucus. It is time for everybody else to do likewise.
Over at The Fix, Chris Cillizza notes that Barack Obama is expected to make some sort of speech about this weekendís terrible events in Tucson. But what remains to be seen is what he will say in whatever speech he gives.
With the country watching, how politicians act -- and react -- is of prime importance. (Remember that most people pay passing attention -- at best -- to politics and politicians with the exception of a few weeks before an election.)
This is especially true of President Obama as, at times of national tragedy, people look to the chief executive to provide sympathy, empathy and reassurance.
Obama, to date, has made only brief public remarks about the shooting. But, there is an expectation that the president will make a speech about the tragedy -- although the timing of such an address remains unclear.
The approach Obama takes in that speech -- is it a narrow-cast address on the senselessness of the crime or broader-scale remarks about the political tone in the country? -- will almost certainly impact the way in which he is perceived by the electorate. (Whether those impressions are in-the-moment or lasting are far more difficult to assess.)
As far as Iím concerned, Barack Obama struck just the right note over the weekend when he commented in this incident. He, perhaps alone among national Democrats, made a point of not politicizing what we know now (and what should have been presumed then) to have been the actions of a deranged individual that was not connected to the words or deeds of any mainstream political figure. It was, in my opinion, the move of a man who has some very decent moral instincts kick in when he isnít playing politics. Frankly, I admire his restraint.
The question, of course, is whether or not he will continue to show that restraint, or whether he will emulate Bill Clinton in the days following Oklahoma City. Clinton, to his everlasting disgrace, decided to demonize dissent in his public comments, implicitly pinning the bombing on the newly elected Republican majority in Congress and the most listened to talk radio host in America based upon the tangential similarities between some of the views of Tim McVeigh and the much more mainstream views of conservatives. Contrast this with George W. Bush, who went out of his way to avoid indicting all Muslims for the crimes of 9/11, though there was a much more direct linkage between Islamic teachings and the organized terrorism of al Qaeda than one could have ever found between Tim McVeigh and conservatism. Indeed, after the cautions given to Americans about leaping to conclusions following the Fort Hood terrorist attack, it is incumbent upon Obama to urge that the same benefit of the doubt and presumption of loyalty be given to Republicans, conservatives, and Tea Party participants as he and his predecessor have insisted be given to Muslims after terrorist incidents that are too numerous to count.
In short, Barack Obama has a choice. Does he want to be the president of all Americans, seeking to bring us all together? Does he want to be president of the Democrats, and deepen the divide that has been growing since
the battle over ObamaCare the 2008 election the 2004 election the beginning of the War in Iraq 9/11 the decision in Bush v. Gore the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal the Oklahoma City bombing the 1992 election the election of Ronald Reagan Watergate the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy the Vietnam War? The choice is truly his Ė and it is my sincerest prayer that he will follow the better angels of his nature.
Of course, Iím not a Rick Perry fan by any stretch of the imagination Ė but most Texans agree with that sentiment when it comes to the possibility of a Rick Perry run for president.
exans say Rick Perry is doing a better job as governor but don't want him to run for president, a new poll shows.
Although Perry, a Republican , has emerged as a tea party favorite and national voice on states rights, nearly two-thirds of Texas voters oppose a bid for the White House.
"It's not necessarily a vote of no confidence," said pollster Mickey Blum. Democrats in the statewide survey overwhelmingly don't want him to run, and many Republicans don't, either.
"Sometimes it's a statement that I like you where you are, keep doing a good job, just stay there," Blum said.
Personally, I wonder how much of that has to do with Texans not wanting to go through another presidential campaign like we did in the when Bush ran in 2000. It was an exhausting time for many Texans, and some wondered how attentive he was to the state as he pursued a national agenda (a concern that was, in my opinion, overblown).
Saturday, Paul Krugman blamed conservatives and Republicans for the alleged ďclimate of hateĒ that led to the atrocity in Arizona..
Would he be talking about this sort of stuff?
A message to progressives: By all means, hang Senator Joe Lieberman in effigy.
Question: What irresponsible cretin wrote that?
I guess that in Krugmanís world, some ďincitefulĒ rhetoric excesses are more acceptable than others. And so while it is apparently not acceptable to ďtargetĒ a district or an opponent, it is perfectly acceptable to encourage the mock lynching of a United States Senator in a manner reminiscent of the hanging of Leo Frank by a mob of Democrats in Georgia.
The media keeps looking for new terms to describe those who enter our country or stay here in violation of our nation's laws, continually trying to sanitize their law-breaking and render them more sympathetic. Well, it looks like one broadcast outlet has gone a euphemism too far.
CLINTON, Conn. (WTNH) - An arrest was made after a four month investigation involving a 19-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted by illegal citizens.
Police say two men who are both from Ecuador have been arrested for the crime.
William Matute 36, and Carlos Celi 29, originally from have had federal detainers placed on them pending their deportation back to Ecuador.
Wow. "Illegal citizens"? Did they really call them citizens? I'm just astounded.
H/T Doug Ross
Here is perhaps the most shocking.
Rep. Robert Brady, D-Pennsylvania, said he will introduce legislation making it a federal crime for a person to use language or symbols that could be perceived as threatening or inciting violence against a Member of Congress or federal official.
Got that -- this idiot wants to ban not just actual threats, but language or symbols that could be PERCEIVED as threatening or inciting violence. In other words, banning any speech that they don't like. After all, we've seen efforts over the last two years to convert almost ANY criticism of the president into an implicit threat to his safety.
My response to Brady's proposed legislation? The same as it was when the Left attempted to delegitimize speech against Obama as threatening.
Let's assume that Maher is correct -- the dissenting words of certain conservatives increase the chance of some unspecified "horrible action" against Barack Obama.
After all, the alternative is government speech regulation, and the evisceration of the First Amendment.
Barack Obama took an oath to uphold, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. He is the commander in chief of our armed forces. As much as any of the soldiers at his command, he should be prepared to lay down his life to defend our nation's charter of liberty. If he isn't, he needs to admit as much and resign.
Every word I wrote in March, 2009 is applicable today -- and every word I wrote regarding Barack Obama applies as well to every member of Congress.
And if the cost of the preservation of our liberty to speak freely is the occasional act of violence against a public official, then that is a price that we -- and they -- must be willing to bear in order to keep America a free society.
After all, our Constitution contains the following words.
Congresswoman Giffords read those words on the floor of the House of Representatives only a few days ago. I have no doubt that she asked to read them because she is a believer in them. For opportunistic enemies of the First Amendment to use the actions of a madman to limit the freedoms guaranteed by that amendment constitutes a betrayal not just of their oaths to uphold the Constitution, but also of Giffords and her commitment to the values of embodied by the First Amendment.
Patriotic Americans need to take a stand and declare that come the next election they will pin a target on any politician who exploits this tragedy to pin one on the First Amendment (or the Second Amendment, for that matter).
UPDATE: Looks like a Texas Congressman is pinning a target on himself by supporting the attack on the First Amendment rights of Americans. We need to be mobilized to run Rep. Rubťn Hinojosa out of office in 2012 -- his stance here indicates that our liberties are unsafe so long as he remains in office.
After all, such violent words clearly have no place in American public life, and should be the cause of the immediate arrest and imprisonment of the speaker, and the permanent exile of that speaker from political life.
And while we are at it, we need to get Barack Obama to quit choosing words that clearly allude to a desire to have his opponents murdered.
Asked by Smith whether heís ďaware of the level of enmity that crosses the airwaves and that people have made part of their daily conversationĒ about him, Mr. Obama replied, ďWell ó I mean, I think that ó when youíve listened to Rush Limbaugh or Glen (sic) Beck itís ÖĒ
ďItís beyond that,Ē Smith interjected.
ďItís pretty Ė apparent,Ē the president continued, ďand ó itís troublesome. . . . ď [EMPHASIS ADDED]
Hmmm. . . "troublesome". I know what event from history was immediately brought to mind by that choice of words to describe those who stir up opposition to the policies of Barack Obama.
Yes, Henry II's angry cry -- "Will no one rid me of this troublesome priest?" -- resulted in a troop of his followers murdering Archbishop Thomas ŗ Becket, his great opponent, in the Canterbury Cathedral.
Barack Obama is an educated man. Surely he knows the the historical precedent he invoked with his choice of the word "troublesome" to describe political opponents. Will Obama -- personally, directly, and publicly -- renounce any intent to provoke acts of violent with his irresponsible, inflammatory word choice? Will he reaffirm his commitment to the US Constitution that he swore to "preserve, protect and defend" at his inauguration? Or will he be responsible for every threatening word, any act of violence, directed against Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, or any other radio or television host who speaks out against the policies of the Obama Regime?
Oh, that's right -- such a standard does not apply to liberal public figures, does it? It only applies to conservatives -- especially when there has been an act of violence engaged in by a lunatic with indeterminate political beliefs and no apparent connection to conservatism.
Now some on the Left (and even those on the Right or in the Center) may think that finding anything sinister in the words above is either absurdly silly or an exercise in rank partisanship. And you would be absolutely correct. After all, no SANE person would understand his words to be an actual incitement to violence, and such heated rhetoric has been used from the very beginning of our nation by political partisans (look at the election of 1800 for examples of this). Attempts today to link folks like Palin, Limbaugh, and beck to the deeds of a crazy man with stated political views diametrically opposed to theirs are equally absurd -- and indicative of dishonesty and/or hypocrisy on the part of those making the links
It seems pretty clear by this point that the Arizona shooter is not a Republican, not a Tea Party affiliate, is in no way influenced by Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, or any other conservative personality that we can track down. It is clear that he is an atheist, a left-winger influenced by the seminal writings of the founders of both international socialism and national socialism, the two most evil left-wing philosophies of the twentieth century.
No, really. So what?
Do his reading habits, political affiliations, religious beliefs/non-beliefs, idolization of certain individuals, group memberships or any of the other various facts that may come to light about him mean that we can parcel the blame out to others who believe the same thing or are members of the same groups?
If it does, then I think it is high time we start rounding up those involved in this event and send them to prison for long periods of time because they must all be just like him.
Jackie Storrer, right, tries her best to figure out the clues on a giant crossword as Jared Loughner,
a volunteer, stands in the background during the Tucson Festival of Books. (Mamta Popat/Arizona Daily Star)
Right now there is more evidence that Jared Loughner was affiliated with the Tucson Festival of Books than there is that he had any connection to the GOP, the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, or anyone else on the right. Maybe it is time to start rounding up folks from that dangerous organization instead -- at least if one uses the logic of those seeking to tie voices on the Right (or, for that matter, voices on the Left) to this unspeakable crime without concrete evidence. So if you can't see your way clear to pinning blame for this attack on America to the folks with the Tucson Festival of Books, then you have no business trying to pin it to your political enemies.
I've been following the developments since I got in from shopping this afternoon.
My take on the story has not changed from what it has been for hours.
1) Prayers for the Congresswoman and her family at this time -- as well as for the other victims.
2) No hedging -- whatever the motive for the shooting, I condemn this attempt to kill a member of our government. It is an attack on all of us.
3) We know who did it -- take him out on the courthouse steps and execute him live on national television.
4) And yes -- kudos to Tilman Fertita for doing the right thing at this time.
If the New York Times allows this scumbag to remain on its payroll after this, then the paper loses all credibility.
Here's his take on the horrific attack in Arizona which cost two lives (including a federal judge) and which left many, including a congresswoman, wounded.
Scumbag that he is, Krugman then goes on to try to connect Limbaugh, Beck, Palin, and others to this incident, and insists that the GOP leadership must take a stand against the "rhetoric" of "hatemongers".
Personally, this GOP leader will condemn hatemongers right now -- and I therefor denounce Paul Krugman in the harshest terms, and demand that he be fired for what he wrote above. His indecent attempt to declare dissent from the policies of the Obama Administration and the Democrats is disgraceful and objectively unAmerican.
And even more disgusting is how he ends his hateful little exercise in political character assassination.
Update: Iím going to take down comments on this one; they would need a lot of moderating, because the crazies are coming out in force, and itís all too likely to turn into a flame war.
In other words, Krugman doesn't want anyone calling him out on his disgraceful words, so he's preemptively censoring his critics. What wussified arrogance from this contemptible little coward.
Here are the full results of this week's exercise in blogging excellence:
These stories always tear me apart -- but this one perhaps a little more than most, given that I'm the son of a Vietnam vet and had a front-row seat on Guam in 1975 when streams of refugees from that abandoned ally fled to the United States.
I won't share the surprise twists and turns with you about the loss of an American fighting man -- but I will share with you the line at the end that stirred me with pride in my country, and also filled me with hope that the racial and ethnic divisions that some folks push as a part of their personal agendas will one day be eliminated.
What happens when a Vietnamese immigrant and a Hispanic woman from Brownwood meet at work, fall in love, get married and have children?
America happens, at its finest, at its proudest and at its bravest.
And today in Brownwood, when they bury a Marine named Nguyen near a grandmother named Salazar, America will happen at its saddest.
Let us all remember that one of the essential things about America is not any single race, ethnicity, or creed -- it is the uniting of different races, ethnicities, and faiths into an alloy that is stronger than any of them alone. E pluribus unum -- from many, one. And Tevan Nguyen was certainly the embodiment of that phrase from the Great Seal of the United States. May he rest in peace, honored and remembered by a people that is truly one made from many.
Iíll be honest Ė I wish that the entire Constitution, including the parts rendered obsolete or inoperative by later amendment, had been read on the floor of the House yesterday. As a student of both history and government, I believe that it would have been a useful exercise. Yet at the same time, I understand the desire to drop the portions that later amendments changed or dropped from the document Ė after all, the point was to read our nationís fundamental law AS IT STANDS TODAY. So I find the hysteria and ad hominem attacks by the New York Times to be rather silly.
Members of the House might have thought they were bringing the Constitution alive by reading it aloud on Thursday. But they made a crucial error by excising its history. When they chose to deliberately drop the sections that became obsolete or offensive, and which were later amended, they missed a chance to demonstrate that this document is not nailed to the door of the past. It remains vital precisely because it can be reimagined.
Wrong, guys Ė it remains vital because of its simplicity and the insistence of the American people that it be followed as it is written. And part of that is not that the document can be REIMAGINED Ė rather it is because the document can be amended and changed by the will of the people.
Whatís more, no section was dropped because it was offensive. Rather, they were excluded precisely because the use of the amendment power rendered portions null and void Ė and a couple of others were nullified by the passage of time.
Why, for example, do the editors seem to think it would be useful to read out the Article I, Section 2 apportionment of members of the House of Representatives, which became obsolete following the 1790 Census and the subsequent reapportionment of the lower house of Congress? Or the Eighteenth Amendment, given its subsequent repeal by the Twenty-First? Of course, those were not the parts that the editors REALLY wanted read., as we find out later.
Having decided to spend their first moments in power proclaiming their devotion to the Constitution, Republican leaders might at least have read the whole thing. The part, for instance, where slaves ďbound to serviceĒ are counted as three-fifths of a person. The part where fugitive slaves cannot gain their freedom by escaping to a free state. Or the part where ordinary citizens do not actually get a direct vote for their senator.
There you have it Ė they wanted the parts about the unlamented and long-abolished institution of slavery to be included, despite the fact that the procedures laid out in Article V were used nearly a century-and-a-half ago to render those lamentable portions null and void. They are, in terms of the operation of the government today, of no significance Ė just as the original method of selecting a vice president is also of significance only as a historical relic.
Why, then, would the editors want those repealed portions read? Hereís the reasoning, in the third paragraph.
All these provisions were written by a group of men that many in the Tea Party and elsewhere seem to consider infallible and nearly divine. The Constitutionís words are a stirring proclamation of freedom across the ages. But some passages are artifacts of their time.
Yeah, thatís right Ė the editorial staff of the New York Times wanted them read to discredit the framers and to delegitimize the newly elected members of Congress, as well as that large body of citizens who elected them under the banner of the Tea Party. They do so, of course, by misrepresenting what most involved in the Tea Party movement actually believe. Iíve never heard anyone call the Framers infallible Ė nor have I heard it suggested that they were anywhere near divine. If they did, none would suggest the use of the amendment power laid out in Article V to alter the document. What they believe Ėand what I (who has never in any way participated in the Tea Party movement) believed long before there was such a movement Ė is that the fundamental law of our nation must be adhered to AS AMENDED, and that this means that changes in that fundamental law are to take place through the use of the process outlined in Article V or not at all. In that sense, the decision to redact those portions repealed or otherwise rendered inoperative by the passage of time is one that is in keeping with the view of the Tea Party and which indicates a fidelity to the document as it has legitimately changed over the last 224 years.
Now I am teach government on the college level several times a year. When I do so, my students are required to read the whole document Ė repealed sections and all Ė to show how it has changed. That is an academic exercise appropriate to the classroom. Yesterdayís redacted effort was a governmental one devoted to a reading of the operative framework of governance, and therefore the ellipses were perfectly appropriate Ė if slightly jarring to those of us who are used to dealing with the text without the omissions.
Personally, I don't believe that the repealing a major spending bill will cost $230 billion dollars. But that is what the CBO is claiming.
Some Republicans are fighting that estimate.
The nonpartisan budget scorekeepers in Congress said on Thursday that the Republican plan to repeal President Obamaís health care law would add $230 billion to federal budget deficits over the next decade, intensifying the first legislative fight of the new session and highlighting the challenge Republicans face in pursuing their agenda.
The new House speaker, John A. Boehner, flatly rejected the report, saying it was based largely on chicanery by Democrats.
Now Boehner is correct -- the Dems did play all sorts of shell games with the CBO in order to get the original estimate of "savings" under the ObamaCare legislation -- despite the fact that it is a major new spending bill that includes gobs of new spending in areas that the government has not spent money before. Some spending was hiddent, some estimates were rosy, and some stuff was just ignored. it was a farce then, and it is a farce now.
But fine -- have it their way. Let's accept the repeal as "costing" $230 billion. that just means that we have to cut an additional $230 billion in spending from the budget over and above what has already been promised. I'm sure we can get there quite easily.
Zero out NPR.
Zero out the National Endowment for the Arts.
Zero out all of Obama's unelected, unconfirmed czars.
And then go after various giveaway programs to special interest groups and transfer payments from the productive to the unproductive. I'm sure we can find an extra $230 billion to get rid of.
After all, the American people want ObamaCare repealed -- and the Democrats are demanding spending cuts if we are going to do so. Seems like a win-win to me.
Besides -- Barry Hussein has said he is going to ignore the will of the American people on this one.
A woman was arrested in the House gallery Thursday after interrupting a reading of the Constitution by yelling out her belief that President Barack Obama is not a natural born citizen of the United States.
When Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) read the part of Article II, Section 1 mandating that only a "natural-born citizen" may be president, the woman, seated in the front row of the public gallery, screamed "Except Obama, except Obama. Help us Jesus."
Dumb. Just plain dumb.
But then again, these folks have never been able to produce a scrap of evidence that supports their absurd thesis, so I guess that ďdumbĒ is the right descriptor.
Not only that, but he wants Hispanic kids to starve and go without bicycles.
A local man files a complaint with HISD against a program that distributes free toys and food to underprivileged kids.
The problem, for John Cobarruvias, is simple: that group is the Harris County Republican Party.
For ten years, the local GOP has been handing out bicycles after the TAKS test to kids at JR Harris Elementary in southwest Houston, a school that is predominantly Hispanic. More recently, the GOP has also been distributing free frozen turkeys during the holidays.
Yeah, we Republicans are awful people in the eyes of John Cobarruvias. We dare to voluntarily give of our time and money to make sure that the mostly poor, mostly minority kids in one school have the makings of a good meal during the holidays and Ė horror of horrors Ė even give them TOYS! Oh, the humanity!
Of course, there are reasons that the misanthropic Cobarruvias objects to the program. He doesnít like the GOP platform. He doesnít like the kids learning that you can get good things anywhere other than from the government. He doesnít like the fact that he and his party look positively miserly because they donít give a damn thing to anyone. So he wants to make sure that poor kids get nothing paid for by Republicans unless the money was forcibly extorted in the form of taxes and has then been sanitized by passing through the loving hands of government bureaucrats so that the kids learn to suck at the government teat at an early age.
Oh, and the race-baiting Cobarruvias also proves that he is utterly ignorant on what the GOP (indeed, what most Americans) believe regarding illegal immigration.
ďThey give us the bird and then they call our children Ďanchor babies,í" says Cobarruvias, who is Hispanic and a Democrat. ďI'm insulted. I'm insulted by it.Ē
* * *
John Cobarruvias: I'm mad because I'm a Hispanic. When they talk about terror babies, they're talking about my kids. Whether they're legal or not is not the point.
Of course, John is talking out his @$$ on this one, You know, since he is a natural born citizen and his children were born in this country as well. By definition, they are not anchor babies. Either this NASA employee is too ignorant to listen to on policy matters, or he is intentionally lying to people. Either way, he ought to be embarrassed by what came out of his mouth on that one. And as far as terrorism, I'm much more concerned about potential terrorism from someone who would write stuff like this than I am about anyone's baby.
A couple of details you should know about John's complaint to HISD as you evaluate this complaint.
If John is feeling left out because we are giving turkeys to the kids and their families, I'm more than willing to give him his own special bird.
UPDATE: John and his supporters seem particularly offended by this sign that appeared at one of the events.
I'm sure that that, in the event he succeeds in this quixotic effort to take food and toys from poor minority children, that we can get this sign posted somewhere.
A county Democrat party disintegrates.
An attempt to reorganize the beleaguered Bexar County Democratic Party collapsed in chaos Tuesday night.
After an hour of raucous argument among executive committee members, a faction of party activists blocked Chairman Dan Ramos' attempt to designate new precinct leaders.
Ramos adjourned the meeting before any significant action was taken.
Precinct 2 Commissioner Paul Elizondo, who was there to swear in the new precinct chairpeople, left without performing the ritual because the meeting was short of a quorum.
Given the recent history of the Democrats in Bexar County, reorganization isn't what is needed. No, what needs to happen is a grand jury investigation and indictment under RICO statutes -- and the liquidation of its assets to pay off its outstanding debts to the county for conducting past primary elections.
I'm generally in agreement with this observation about keeping accusers in sex cases anonymous.
Feminists have long argued that rape must be treated like any other crime. But in no other crime are accusers' identities hidden. Treating rape differently serves only to maintain its mischaracterisation as a "different" kind of crime, loaded with cultural baggage.
Finally, there is a profound moral issue here. Though children's identities should, of course, be shielded, women are not children. If one makes a serious criminal accusation, one must be treated as a moral adult. The importance of this is particularly clear in the Assange case, where public opinion matters far more than usual. Here, geopolitical state pressure, as well as the pressure of public attitudes about Assange, weigh unusually heavily. Can judicial decision-making be impartial when the accused is exposed to the glare of media scrutiny and attack by the US government, while his accusers remain hidden?
It is no one's business whom a victim of sex crime has had sex with previously, or what she was wearing when attacked. Laws exist to protect women from such inquiries. But some questions of motive and context, for both parties, are legitimate in any serious allegation.
That said, I find the timing of this alleged appeal to principle suspect. Why? Because Wolf, like many other left-wingers, wants to expose two victims in a case where the accused is a liberal hero -- Julian Assange, the serial sexual predator who runs WikiLeaks. And just like in the 1990s when Bil Clinton, another icon of the Left, was accused, it is the case that liberals want to identify and destroy the accusers, not the perpetrators of sexual abuse and assault against women.
So yes, let's consider -- and implement -- the sort of changes Wolf proposes here. But let's not do it now, during a highly charged and publicized case in which the supporters of the rapist have already shown a propensity to stalk, slander, and otherwise punish those who don't share their worshipful devotion to him. Let's make the change in a less charged atmosphere, with due deliberation and consideration of how to proceed.
I supported Kay Bailey Hutchison in the 2010 gubernatorial primary because I wanted Rick Perry gone. But I won't be supporting her in 2012 if she acts as is currently being speculated by many observers.
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchisonís curious silence about her 2012 plans have Texas Republicans increasingly convinced sheís rethinking her decision to retire and quietly plodding ahead toward a fourth term.
Hutchison hasnít yet given any public indication of whether sheís running, and top Republicans in Washington, as well as personal friends, say sheís keeping her cards close to her vest.
But with the looming March 2012 primary, several other candidates swirling and the senator remaining tight-lipped, many GOP-ers see no reason to believe Hutchisonís ready to step aside.
In 2006, when there was no obvious successor to the senator, I urged her to run for reelection. Her gubernatorial run, however, brought a fine group of candidates to the fore -- including my preference for the next United States Senator from the great state of Texas, Michael Williams.
Many of us love you and are thankful for your service, Kay -- but it is time to move on and let the next generation lead.
It is clear that this murder was not merely a family domestic squabble turned bad -- it was a direct attack upon the victim's exercise of her civil and constitutional rights. Why, then, would there be any effort to make a plea deal?
Attorneys are discussing a possible plea deal for an Iraqi immigrant accused of killing his daughter because he believed she was too Westernized.
Attorneys discussed a plea deal for Faleh Hassan Almaleki on Wednesday during a last-minute closed-door meeting in Maricopa County Superior Court, but did not reach an agreement.
If a plea deal is reached, it could be announced at Almaleki's next court date Tuesday.
Almaleki has pleaded not guilty, and faces life in prison if convicted of the first-degree murder charge against him.
Police say Almaleki slammed his Jeep into his daughter, 20-year-old Noor Almaleki, and her boyfriend's mother in October 2009.
Noor was in a coma for two weeks before succumbing to her injuries, in a case that caused outrage nationwide and that prosecutors called an "honor killing."
Why, then, is there an effort to reduce the charges and the sentence after already taking the death penalty off the table in order to avoid offending Muslim sensitivities?
"An open process provides some level of assurance that there is no appearance that a Christian is seeking to execute a Muslim for racial, political, religious or cultural beliefs," Little wrote, referring to County Attorney Andrew Thomas' Christian faith.
And let's not forget the horrendous conduct of the victim that justified her murder in the eyes of her daddy.
At 17, she refused to enter an arranged marriage in Iraq, enraging her father, according to a court document filed by prosecutors.At 19, Noor moved into her own apartment and began working at a fast food restaurant but quit after her parents kept showing up at her work, insisting she return home, the document said.
Later in 2009, she moved in with her boyfriend and his parents, Reikan and Amal Khalaf, after saying her parents had hit her.Faleh Almaleki regularly harassed his daughter and the Khalafs, once telling Reikan Khalaf that if his daughter didn't move out of their home, "something bad was going to happen," the document said.
And for this she had to die -- and now daddy is getting the second helping of preferential treatment from the prosecutor. Outrageous! Where is the justice for Noor?
President Barack Obamaís two-week stay at his Hawaii Winter White House was illegal under a long-standing Honolulu ban on short-term rentals.
Now Obama technically did not break the law -- they guy who rented the house to him did by giving him less than a 30 day lease. But one would think that Obama might have lawyers and agents who would look into such things before the rental -- especially since they picked a home that added hundreds of thousands of dollars to the cost of the vacataion to the American taxpayer by not choosing to stay in luxurious guest quarters on a nearby Air Force base 9where security would have cost less and transportation costs would have been minimized).
Clearly the defense, not the offense.
Looking back on the Texansí season, itís obvious the problem wasnít on offense. The Texans ranked third in offense, seventh in rushing, fourth in passing, sixth in touchdowns, fourth in red zone touchdowns and second in red zone scoring.
The offense was among the NFLís best despite having the leagueís worst starting field position (25.6-yard line).
Now we can consider a lot of things in explaining why the defense was such a mess this year -- the suspension of Brian Cushing for four games to start the season left him less than sharp for the rest of the games, the loss of DeMeco Ryans left a big hole in the defense, Dunta Robinson's departure, a host of inexperienced backups. We can also fault the defensive coaching. Hopefully the hiring of new defensive coaching staff -- can we all say WADE PHILLIPS -- and some personnel moves in the off-season wil help change a 6-10 squad into a 10-6 squad (presuming there is a 16-game season next year).
What's more, it is a reasonable, commonsense proposal.
In an ideal world, Democrats would choose their nominees, and Republicans would choose theirs. If a voter wanted a say in the matter, he or she could register as a member of that party and have a voice in the decision. But about half the states have decided that itís better to undermine a partyís ability to determine its own path forward.
Hence, we have the situation where Rush Limbaugh cynically tries to meddle in the other partyís primary, and in justified retaliation, Democrats will cynically do everything in their power to foist Sarah Palin on a GOP that will likely want nothing to do with her. And why not? The system allows it!
Thereís an easy solution to these shenanigans: get rid of the open primary.
And it isn't even a question of Limbaugh or Palin, r any other personality that you might want to bring into the discussion. It is a question of freedom of association, and the right of a group of citizens united for a common purpose to act without the state mandating that they let outsiders participate in the process.
After all, I'm a Republican. I've always been a Republican. I don't even need all the fingers on one hand to count the number of Democrats I've ever voted for. What business do I have walking into a polling place on the day of a primary election and receiving a Democrat ballot? After all, I'm not a Democrat -- and the only thing I and those like me would do voting in a Democrat primary would be to either try to nominate the most beatable candidates so that my real party's candidate will be able to win in the general election. Why don't I do that? because such efforts are, in my not terribly humble opinion, totally corrupt.
No, the purpose of a primary is supposed to be the nomination of a party's candidates by those affiliated with that party. Any state-mandated system that allows for outsiders -- especially members of the opposition -- to involve themselves in that process is an unwarranted interference in the freedom of association of party members, and their ability to unite for the common purpose of nominating candidates supported by those party members.
In Wayne's World, it was said that the album "Frampton Comes Alive" was received by every kid in the mail when they became teenagers. Well, as much as i loved some of the music on that album, the album that I often think of as being the "soundtrack of my teenage years" is Gerry Rafferty's "City to City".
The singer-songwriter Gerry Rafferty, whose songs such as Stuck in the Middle with You, Baker Street and Get it Right Next Time soundtracked the 1970s, has died aged 63 after a long illness.
His family said he died at home peacefully with his daughter Martha this morning.
If you mention the name Gerry Rafferty to those of us of a certain age, there is one song that immediately will be on our lips -- the best known of his hits, most noted for the sound of the saxophone solo.
That said, Baker Street was not my favorite Gerry Rafferty song, or even my favorite song off the "City to City" album. that honor goes to the first song on the album -- a little known cut called "The Ark".
Indeed, I often envisioned that song as one sung by some mystical bard in a fantasy tale -- the words of which sent some unlikely hero off on a great adventuring quest.
But what folks forget is that one of the most fun songs of the 1970s was a Gerry Rafferty tune from his days as a member of Stealers Wheel -- the classic "Stuck In The Middle With You".
Gerry Rafferty was a tortured genius. Contractual obligations after the Stealers Wheel breakup cost him years of opportunities to record and release more of his music, while his personal demons interfered with his later success. Indeed, his long battle with alcohol ultimately led to his death.
Rest in peace, Gerry Rafferty -- and thank you for the gift of music you brought into the lives of so many.
I ran into this posted by James Merline over at AOLNews.
Hokey as it is, it is still a bit of classic television -- and if Capt. Kirk can understand it in the late 2260s, then certainly we Americans can understand the Constitution today (Ezra Klein notwithstanding).
Congress has passed a law regarding the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention facility and the sort of trials that its inmates are to receive.
So what is the response of the Obama Regime going to be?
President Obamaís legal advisers, confronting the prospect of new restrictions on the transfer of GuantŠnamo detainees, are debating whether to recommend that he issue a signing statement asserting that his executive powers would allow him to bypass the restrictions, according to several officials.
Now remember Ė Obama and his fellow Democrats railed against signing statements in 2008. Obama rejected their use. Now he appears ready to use one to explicitly disregard a provision of the law that had bipartisan support. This is the same Barack Hussein Obama who stated ďit is a clear abuse of power to use such statements as a license to evade laws that the president does not like or as an end-run around provisions designed to foster accountability. I will not use signing statements to nullify or undermine congressional instructions as enacted into law.Ē
If Obama issues a signing statement in this situation, it is the clear obligation of the House of Representatives to draw up and vote for articles of impeachment. After all, Obama will have taken a course of action that he himself has claimed is an abuse of power and therefore knowingly violated the Constitution Ė in addition to breaking one of his campaign promises in a most spectacular way. And given that Democrats have also declared that such statements are a violation of the law, Democrats would have to vote for the articles of impeachment in the House and for Obama's conviction and removal from office in the Senate.
After all, if legislation is bipartisan when one or two Republicans join Democrats to pass unpopular liberal legislation, it certainly ought to be considered bipartisan when a few Democrats vote with Republicans for a popular conservative legislative initiative.
Only a few moderate or conservative Democrats remain left in the House of Representatives come opening day on Wednesday, but expect at least a chunk of them to vote in favor of the Republican plan to repeal the health care law.
As one of its first act in the new Congress, the Republican majority is calling up the law for repeal. Text of the repeal bill is already online for Americans to read and a vote is expected on Jan. 12.
Several moderate and conservative Democrats contacted by Fox News on Monday night said they wanted to first evaluate the Republican proposal hitting the House floor before deciding how they might vote.
But, at least one Democrat who voted against the health bill last year and in late 2009 is already leaning toward voting to repeal the law.
That makes the effort by Democrats to block the repeal nothing more than partisan obstructionism. Will the media condemn it as such?
Iíve long said that I am not a fan of unions. I personally believe that laws that allow for mandatory unionism ought to be repealed, because oneís employer or fellow workers ought to have no more right to force you to belong to any organization, whether it is a union, the Masons, or the local holy roller church. But I can at least accept such policies if they are voluntarily imposed by a private employer, even though I consider doing so to be misguided. But there is an employment practice I find even more offensive Ė and it appears that a number of states may take the first step towards eliminating it.
In an internal memorandum, the A.F.L.-C.I.O. warned that in 16 states, Republican lawmakers would seek to starve public sector unions of money by requiring each government worker to ďopt inĒ before that personís dues money could be used for political activities.
Frankly, they need to go a whole lot further. What needs to happen is that states need to ban mandatory unionism and/or agency shop fees for public employees. Just as no public employee should be required to kick back part of their salary to a public official or their campaign as a condition of employment with the government, no person should be required to kick back a part of their salary to a favored organization as a condition of working for the government. Too many public employee unions Ė especially teacher unions, but not only those Ė have their political clout because they manage to siphon off a portion of the salaries of government employees as a condition of their maintaining their employment. And that is every bit as corrupt as if the local alderman, county clerk, or state representative makes political contributions a condition of employment.
Here in Harris County, Election Day was marked by a stunning Republican victory in which every county office was won by a Republican. This even included the unexpected victory of Jack Morman, a political unknown, over incumbent Precinct 2 County Commissioner Sylvia Garcia, seen as unbeatable by most observers. Indeed, Morman's victory was the great surprise of the night as results rolled in. After all, the last time a County Commissioner lost a bid for reelection in Harris County was 1974.
As her term has drawn to a close, the Houston Chronicle has done a couple of puff pieces about her in order to prime the pump for an expected 2012 run for Congress in what is expected to be a new Hispanic-majority seat here in the Houston area. But the article this weekend (last week's article was "poor Sylvia -- what will she do now, since she hasn't had a private sector job in 25 years?") went to unexcusable lengths to do so, by proffering the argument that her defeat was based upon race -- analogizing it to the defeat of Mexican forces under Santa Ana by the Texians under Sam Houston while talking about her involvement in preserving the historic site where the war for Texas independence was won.
It doesn't occur to her that the battle of San Jacinto could be a metaphor for her own recent defeat: underestimated Anglo forces coming out of nowhere, catching the powerful Hispanic unawares, wreaking an utter and lasting defeat.
Whoa! What was that?
Now i went to a lot of campaign events this year, and I never heard a word abut race or ethnicity from anyone on the GOP side (the same cannot be said about the Democrats) with regard to this race. Rather, the goal was to take back Harris County government (and preserve Texas government) from the liberal acolytes of Barack Obama who had won in 2008. No one I heard ever talked about getting rid of Garcia because of her Hispanic heritage and replacing her with an Anglo -- rather, the argument was that she was a liberal who needed to be replaced by a conservative. And while many of us have warm personal feelings for Garcia (she is, I'll concede, a nice lady), that was insufficient for folks to set aside our political principles in order to vote for a candidate who was their antithesis.
So why was it necessary to draw that analogy? Just a little bit of racial/ethnic pot stirring by the liberals at the Houston Chronicle.
Especially when they have no clue whatsoever about what they are talking about?
I ran into such a situation over the weekend. Wandering the Washington Post website, I ran into an editorial regarding the Hatch Act as it applies to certain officeholders and employees of the District of Columbia. Now the editorial made a valid point in suggesting that the law's goofy application be modified -- but I decided to make a Constitutional one in the comments.
Sounds to me like there is a simple solution to the problem -- repeal the home rule law and follow the Constitution by returning to direct Congressional governance of the District -- as envisioned by the Framers of the Constitution.
1/1/2011 10:51:45 AM
Now I was quite serious there -- it seems to me that actually following the Constitution would be a way of solving a whole host of problems faced by the District. I'd also like to see the repeal of the Twenty-third Amendment giving the District of Columbia votes in the electoral college, and instead either return to the previous practice of treating nation's capital as an enclave with no vote OR include its residents in with Maryland (which ceded all the territory of the District to the federal government) for purposes of voting for federal officers.
It wasn't long, however, before I got the following response from someone with no clue.
RhymesWithRight: I assume from your pen name that you are a conservative. Therefore, I think it's safe to assume that you have a healthy distrust and low opinion of the US Congress.
So, by your logic, it is not cool for the US Congress to overly regulate things that affect the entire nation, like air quality or health care or whatnot ... but it is cool for the US Congress to directly meddle in the day-to-day affairs of a US City? Would you be cool with Congress telling the mayor of Kansas City or Milwaukee how to do his/her job?
If you support federalism, the concept that the US government should have limited powers and that state and local governments know best how to regulate their own affairs, then you have to support it totally or else you're a hypocrite. If you support states rights for Texas to pass its own loose gun laws, then you must also support the right of CA to pass medical marijuana initiatives. And while DC is technically not a state, it is the only morally right thing to do to treat their citizens no different than citizens of TX or CA or Kansas City or Milwaukee.
1/1/2011 12:29:56 PM
Hopefully you detect the problem with the argument -- the problem being that marclips clearly had never actually read the US Constitution and therefore had no concept as to why his federalism argument constituted an EPIC FAIL.
I'm sorry, marclips, but I'm simply suggesting that we follow what is expressly written in the US Constitution, Article I, Section 8:
"To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States..."
I realize that you, like Ezra Klein, might consider the Constitution to be such an old document as to be impossible to understand, but the words are quite clear -- Washington DC is not to be a self-governing entity at all, but is instead to be under the direct authority of Congress.
Now if you have a problem with the US Constitution, you are free to work to amend it -- or to take yourself to another place where the government is organized along such lines as you view as better than what we have here.
1/1/2011 4:31:18 PM
Now marclips is right -- I do have a healthy distrust of government. Indeed, that applies not just to government on the federal level, but also on the state and local level. But whether my opinion of Congress is low or high, my opinion is that the Constitution should be followed. And for all marclips has a good eighth grade understanding of federalism, what he/she lacks is a familiarity with the founding charter of our government and the powers expressly delegated by it to Congress -- as well as the fundamental difference between the states (and such local subdivisions that they may from time to time choose to create) and the District of Columbia, which has a unique constitutional status and unique limitations as a result.
For marclips, and for others suffering from his or her ignorance, I'd like to offer a comparison from my youth that might make matters quite clear for them. I grew up in a military family, and lived for many years on military bases. When on base, we did not elect a base mayor or a base council that made such laws and regulations as we saw fit. Many of the laws, rules, and regulations came directly from congressional legislation, while others were the result of decisions made by the Department of Defense in Washington. To the degree that decisions were made locally, they were the result of decisions made and/or ratified by the base Commanding Officer, not any elected official. And while some might object to the analogy I'm making between the District of Columbia and a military base, it is not so far-fetched, given the full text of the constitutional clause I cited in my second comment.
To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings;
Yeah, that is right -- the Constitution of the United States envisions the District of Columbia to be analogous to a military base in terms of Congressional authority over its day-to-day governance, not the equivalent of a state or a state's political subdivisions. Once Americans (and in this case residents of the District of Columbia and their liberal co-conspirators) get over their Constitutional ignorance and actually embrace the clear words and meaning of the document that establishes the powers of our government and its limitations, then the solution to many of the political conundrums of our day become self-evident and easy to implement -- provided there is the political will to take the radical step of following the Constitution as it is written.
The Houston Texans beat the Jacksonville Jaguars tonight, by a score of 34-17.
Well, that is one way of looking at things.
Another way of looking at it is that the Houston Texans are officially 1-0 in 2011.
Maybe this perspective has something to do with having grown up a Chicago Cubs fan. And certainly this one game won't count in whatever season we have this year, lockout or no lockout.
But the Texans got the job done tonight, despite injuries and with few miscues. They ended with Arian Foster leading the league in rushing, Matt Schaub completing a two-year performance that saw him pass for over 9000 yards, and the injured Andre Johnson still high on the list of receivers for the season even though he missed the last two games. And while we still end this season 6-10, there are good reasons to hope for something better next year.
Patrick Henry sums up a position that I have long held -- and which I hope I will always continue to hold -- regarding the place of religion in the heritage of the United States.
Patrick Henry ó best known for ďGive me liberty or give me death!Ē ó was the furthest thing from a theocrat when he observed that a predominantly Christian nation provides the best home for people of every faith and no faith, precisely because individual freedom of choice is at the very core of the Christian view of the human person. Henry wrote: ďIt cannot be emphasized too clearly and too often that this nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religion, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason, peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here.Ē [All emphasis mine]
Something to think about the next time you hear a rabid secularist argue against the notion that America is a Christian nation. While they are correct in the sense that we do not have an official religion here, and that all are free to follow their conscience in regard to religious matter, it must be remembered that America is now and always has been a nation built upon a Christian heritage, that Christianity has always played a very special role in how this nation has defined itself, and that if we ever lose that essential element of our national character we will cease to be the sort of nation that leads people of every faith (and of no faith at all) to choose to come here.
From the friendly folks at Rasmussen.
Yet while 75% of Black Democrats Strongly Approve of the job he's doing as president, only 40% of White Democrats share that level of enthusiasm. That gap is much bigger than it was when Obama first took office in January 2009. During his first week as president, he earned Strong Approval from 88% of Black Democrats and 72% of White Democrats.
Among White Democratic men, the president now earns Strong Approval from just 33%. That figure is down from 70% during the presidentís first week in office.
From an ideological perspective, 60% of Liberal Democrats Strongly Approve of Obamaís performance. Only 14% of Conservative Democrats agree (down from 49% during Obamaís first week as president).
That 80% of black Democrats approve of Obama is a sign that they are either delusional or racist in their political perceptions. But it also ought to be of great concern for Democrat leaders everywhere -- after all, blacks are supportive of Democrats somewhere in the 90s, and Obama is now nowhere near that level.
And we won't get into the question of liberals generally -- we know they are delusional by definition.
Why don't you hear it for yourself how Muslims responded to an act of jihadi terrorism that Obama can't bring himself to blame on Muslims.
Yeah, you heard that right.
No connection between Islam and terrorism? Yeah. Right. Sure.
H/T Atlas Shrugs
For a man who claims to be a Christian by choice, Barry Hussein Obimbo sure does go out of his way to cater to the Muslims when faced with one more terrorist attack in the Islamist campaign to destroy the ancient Christian communities of the lands conquered by followers of Muhammad's Big Book of Satanic Lies.
A devastating New Year's Day terrorist bombing at a Coptic church in Egypt that killed 21 people was the latest in a spate of violent assaults against the Middle East's vulnerable Christian communities.
The car bomb explosion also injured 79 people just after midnight Saturday as worshipers were leaving a New Year's Mass at the Saints Church in east Alexandria, Egyptian officials said. The bombing sparked street clashes between police and angry Copts, who hurled stones, stormed a nearby mosque and threw some of its books into the street.
So let's call this what it is -- a Muslim terrorist attack on Christians, one of many that we have seen take place during this holy Christian season.
So, what does the disgrace
occupying the Oval Office taking a $2 million taxpayer-funded vacation in Hawaii have to say on the matter?
The attack on a church in Alexandria, Egypt caused 21 reported deaths and dozens of injured from both the Christian and Muslim communities.
Hold on here, Barry -- let's break this thing down for folks.
So yes, while the White House does acknowledge that the attack was actually directed at Christians, the Obama Regime finds it necessary to draw moral equivalence between the intended victims of this attack and a handful of bystanders or passers-by who might have been slightly injured by the terrorists acting in the name of their religion. But then again, since the current leadership (if you can call it that) of the United States cannot bring itself to acknowledge who the terrorists are and what their motivation is, I guess we should not be surprised by the stunning insensitivity shown in this statement.
But for those who live in this world with their eyes opened and their brains engaged, the events of this first day of the new year should serve as a reminder of the true nature of the enemy.
After all, he's the most popular governor AND more experienced than the incumbent president.
Indian-origin Louisiana leader Bobby Jindal is the most popular serving governor in the United States, an opinion poll has said.
Jindal has an approval rating of 58 per cent approval rating, along with 34 per cent disapproving of his job, shows a survey by Public Policy Polling.
One of the top ranking Republican leader of the country, Jindal is seeking re-election next year.
Except, of course, that "next year" means 2011 -- so actually this year. Trying to run a presidential and gubernatorial campaign at once would be impossible. And what's more, we are long past the days when it was possible to draft a candidate who did not initiate a campaign -- the cost and organization involved in a campaign makes that unrealistic.
Not that there isn't the possibility of seeing him as a VP pick. Bolton-Jindal 2012 -- I like the sound of that.
Here are the results of this weeks exercise in blogging excellence: