Wow! Somehow I got 800 hits on this post -- law
lawnorder: Daily Kos :: Peak Oil Myth and the Easter Island ecological disaster
Other top viewed posts
lawnorder: Senator Byrd Tells Judy Woodruff She's Been "Intimidated" into shilling for Bush
lawnorder: DoD Gas Pains
lawnorder: Voting Security (2)
lawnorder: Daily Kos :: The coming weather crisis in 2012
lawnorder: California's secession
lawnorder: Someone please tell Saddam: Jalal Talibani, Kurdish leader, Peshmerga fighter...is now the PRESIDENT OF IRAQ!!! WOW!!! HOW COOL!
lawnorder: First They Came for the Jews
lawnorder: A box of twinkies made me do it
lawnorder: 1920's Killer flu of 1918 may have quietly evolved for years
When everything seems like the movies
Yeah you BLOG bleed just to know you'r alive
Wow! Somehow I got 800 hits on this post -- law
Filibustering people of faith?
by Jim Wallis
During the 2004 election campaign, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson virtually said Christians could only vote for George W. Bush. Many of you, along with other Christians and people of faith, responded with letters to the editor, newspaper ads, and even bumper stickers reminding America that "God is not a Republican...or a Democrat." Then the Republican National Committee circulated lists of "duties" to local churches, which included turning over their congregational membership lists. The RNC also sent postcards to voters in some states with images of a Bible being banned and a man putting a wedding ring on another man - warning that this was what "liberal" politicians planned to do.
Now the Religious Right is saying that supporting the president's judicial nominations is a test of orthodoxy. This is a dramatic new and serious breach in the relationship between faith and politics.
James Dobson of Focus on the Family, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, Prison Fellowship's Chuck Colson, and Southern Baptist leader Albert Mohler are hosting "Justice Sunday," a telecast this weekend from a mega-church in Louisville, Kentucky. Their message is that those who don't support President Bush's judicial nominees are hostile to "people of faith."
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist plans to join them by video to get political support for his effort to end the Senate practice known as the filibuster, which is designed to delay a vote on controversial issues in order to protect strong minorities from being overrun by majorities. The Republican leader's appearance at this event endorses the Religious Right's claim that the Democratic filibuster of a small number of very conservative judges is "a filibuster against people of faith."
Despite the fact that Democrats oppose these judges for their views on a variety of subjects, conservative leaders have singled out abortion and gay marriage as their chief concerns and only want judges who support their agenda. Despite the fact that many Democrats who oppose some of President Bush's nominees are themselves people of faith, Republicans and their religious supporters are questioning the faith and religious integrity of their opponents.
That is an escalation of the religious/political war. And the two together sound like assertions of a Republican theocracy. Behind these activities lies a fundamental assumption by Republican operatives and their conservative religious allies that they own religion in America. They demand that religious people vote only their way. They claim that "values voters" in America belong to them, and they disrespect the faith of those who disagree with their agenda. There are better words for this than just "politically divisive" or "morally irresponsible." For these are not merely political offenses, they are religious ones. And for offenses such as these, theological terms are better - terms such as idolatry and blasphemy.
We should bring our religious convictions about all moral issues to the public square - such as the uplifting of the poor, the protection of the environment, the ethics of war, or the tragic number of abortions in America - without attacking the sincerity of other people's faith, or demanding that we should win because we are religious. We must make moral arguments and mobilize effective movements for social change that can powerfully persuade our fellow citizens, religious or not, on what is best for the common good.
What I hear, from one end of this country to the other, is how tired we are of ideological religion and how hungry we are for prophetic faith. Join me in sending a message to Senator Frist that we are people of faith, and these Religious Right leaders do not speak for us.
Sojourners : SojoMail : Subscribe
Barry Morris Goldwater (January 1, 1909 - May 29, 1998) American politician; United States Senator"
On Religious Extremism
Fri Apr 22nd, 2005 at 14:01:52 CDT
However, on religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in 'A,' 'B,' 'C,' and 'D.' Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of 'conservatism.'
-- Sen. Barry Goldwater (R)
Daily Kos :: On Religious Extremism
There is a reason the first 3 of the 10 commandments are about using the name of god in mundane things... And dirty politicians pretending to speak for God is the reason
The 10 Commandments & Laws Given to Moses
ONE: 'You shall have no other gods before Me.' Not Bush, not Tom Delay and not Pat Robertson
TWO: 'You shall not make for yourself a carved image--any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.' A carving of the 10 commandments is just a carving and has nothing 'holy' about it
THREE: 'You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.' Not for political gain, not to bash your opponents, not to get more audience for your TV or newspaper network
Posted on Daily Kos :: Comments On Religious Extremism
1st Commandment: HAVE NO OTHER GODS
KJV - 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
NRSV - 3 you shall have no other gods before me.
TEV - 3 "Worship no god but me.
2nd Commandment: DO NOT MAKE IDOLS
KJV - 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; 6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
NRSV - 4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, 6 but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.
TEV - 4 "Do not make for yourselves images of anything in heaven or on earth or in the water under the earth. Do not bow down to any idol or worship it, because I am the LORD your God and I tolerate no rivals. I bring punishment on those who hate me and on their descendants down to the third and fourth generation. But I show my love to thousands of generations of those who love me and obey my laws.
3rd Commandment: DO NOT TAKE THE LORD'S NAME IN VAIN
KJV - 7 Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
NRSV -7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.
TEV - 7 "Do not use my name for evil purposes, for I, the LORD your God, will punish anyone who misuses my name.
So sad that kids have to die due to prejudice! -- law
Kids don't kill themselves because they're gay. That's absurd. At least that's what Roz Michaels used to think. Twelve years ago, her 21-year-old son Bruce jumped to his death at Grand Canyon's No Name Point. He left a suicide note explaining he was doing it because he was gay. Until the note, Bruce's family had no idea he was gay. But it wouldn't have mattered to them. 'It was so ridiculous. I wouldn't have cared that he was gay,' says Michaels through tears. 'This poor kid shouldered his secret all the years without telling anybody.'
According to Statistics Canada, close to 600 youth between age 10 and 24 die by suicide every year. Numerous studies suggest that among lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) youth, approximately 32 per cent contemplate or attempt suicide (compared to seven per cent of all youth). But researchers and LGB advocates say it's not their sexuality that leads these kids down a suicidal path - it's the stigma and discrimination they face in a heterosexual world.
'You learn that everything about you is wrong and hated,' says Rosemary Hardwick, chair and educator for the Toronto Suicide Information Alliance. 'You internalize homophobia. You're constantly monitoring everything about you, trying to pass as 'normal.''
CAMH: Better dead than queer: Youth suicide and discrimination in a heterosexual world: "
A good example of growuing up Blue - neon blue -- law
Lone child Tompkins portrays himself as a dim reflection of his famous, brilliant, charismatic, but difficult father, 1970s guru and cult author Peter Tompkins, whose unique means of self-expression included building numerous gratuitous stairways in their spacious New England 'barn' home. Tompkins is surrounded by all the trappings and some of the perils of the Seventies: open marriage, nudity, parapsychology, substance abuse, and the like. Many of his experiences were positive, e.g., he had a close and healthy alliance with his mother, and he was exposed to fascinating ideas and activities, such as scuba diving in Bimini during his father's search for Atlantis. Still, his inevitable confusion ultimately led to alcohol and heroin abuse
Amazon.com: Books: Paradise Fever: Growing Up in the Shadow of the New Age
Got this comment from Common Ground Common Sense to my post on the current GOP attacks on judges... Hmmm, the poster's got something there -- law
Are we missing something here--is this really about a bunch of nutty right wing radical extremist crossing the line in efforts to get right wing radical extremist judges elected? When you stand back and take a look at the people surrounding Bush, Cornyn and Tom Delay's threats toward judges, Frist using the GOP base to use the nuclear option, wolfowitz at world bank, Bolton at UN, Rice at the State Dept, the lies about WMD, lies about SS crisis, and on and on, it seems like their must be something far more sinister going on here than even the conspiracy theorist haven't come up with yet.
What is clear is that the Bush admin is very good at distracting the Democrat lawmakers and public from what they may really be conspiring. SS/privatization has been a good distraction along with Tom Delay and the nuclear option.
I also wonder if Rove, Cheney and Card told Bush that SS was in crisis and if he tackled SS reform it would improve his legacy. Meanwhile, they get Bush out of the WH for 60 days trying to spread this fantasy while the three of them run the WH pursuing their own agenda. My guess is that Rice and Bush don't have a clue what is really going on--and they are being manipulated by the neocons and Federalist society members (Bolton)http://www.pfaw.org/pfaw/general/default.aspx?oid=3149. The problem is that we may not find out the truth until it is too late.
Common Ground Common Sense
Disgusting! -- law
Evangelicals Caught on Tape: We Can Shut Down the Courts!
by Pyewacket at Dailykos
Fri Apr 22nd, 2005 at 12:03:13 CDT
On March 17th and 18th, "The Family Research Council" headed by Tony Perkins hosted a conference in Washington attended by James Dobson founder of "Focus on the Family." (How does the Religious Right keep all these "family" groups straight and is it a coincidence that la Cosa Nostra is alternately known as "La Famiglia"?) This event was addressed by both Bill Frist and Tom DeLay.
Described as a "closed door" meeting, security was apparently limited to closing the doors because someone was wired...
The resultant tape found it's way to the advocacy group "Americans United for Separation of Church and State" who in turn handed it to the LA Times.
Evangelical Christian leaders, who have been working closely with senior Republican lawmakers to place conservative judges in the federal courts, have also been exploring ways to punish sitting jurists and even entire courts viewed as hostile to their cause.
An audio recording obtained by the Los Angeles Times features two of the nation's most influential evangelical leaders, at a private conference with supporters, laying out strategies to rein in judges, such as stripping funding from their courts in an effort to hinder their work. [emphasis added]
Hold the phone! I thought the courts were in crisis! Benches vacant as demonic liberals held up appointments. Justice not only blind but running wayyyyyy late. Now the American Taliban wants to wipe out whole Circuits.
"Very few people know this, that the Congress can simply disenfranchise a court," Dobson said. "They don't have to fire anybody or impeach them or go through that battle. All they have to do is say the 9th Circuit doesn't exist anymore, and it's gone. [emphasis added]"
Look, these guys want what's coming to them.
The remarks by Perkins and Dobson reflect the passion felt by Christians who helped fuel Bush's reelection last year with massive turnout in battleground states, and who also spurred Republican gains in the Senate and House.
Claiming a role by the movement in the GOP gains, Dobson concluded: "We've got a right to hold them accountable for what happens here."
Both leaders chastised what Perkins termed "squishy" and "weak" Republican senators who have not wholeheartedly endorsed ending Democrats' power to filibuster judicial nominees. They said these included moderates such as Sens. Olympia J. Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska. They also grumbled that Sens. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and George Allen of Virginia needed prodding.
"We need to shake these guys up," Perkins said.
Said Dobson: "Sometimes it's just amazing to me that they seem to forget how they got here." [emphasis added]
Dobson goes on to claim victim status (as these guys always do when held accountable) behind the Sponge Bob Homopants controversy he brought upon himself. It's the liberal press trying to tear him down, you see. And they're not done yet. In a stunning example of self-fulfilling prophecy, he laments:
"This will not be the last thing that you read about that makes me look ridiculous."
The Times article tends to focus on Dobson and Perkins. The Americans United website, though, has Frist and DeLay's addresses on streaming audio. They introduce them this way:
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) addressed attendees and pledged that Republican leaders in Congress would work to implement the Religious Right's controversial political agenda.
Give a listen.
Daily Kos :: Evangelicals Caught on Tape: We Can Shut Down the Courts!
Daily Howler: Coulter makes ''errors'' like other scribes breathe. But store-bought John Cloud couldn't find them
BERNSTEIN WATCHES THINGS FALL APART: Congratulations to Carl Bernstein, perhaps our frankest press bigfoot. On last evening’s Special Report, Jim Angle cited a recent speech by the Watergate worthy:
ANGLE (4/19/05): Former Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein, who helped break the Watergate story, says journalism nowadays is squandering the public's trust, insisting the, quote, 'triumph of the idiot culture in news, particularly TV news, has weakened journalist drive for the truth.'
At a press convention in Kansas, Bernstein said, quote, 'The consequences to a society that is misinformed and disinformed by the grotesque values of this idiot culture are truly perilous. For the first time in our history,' he went on, 'the weird, the stupid, the coarse, the sensational and the untrue are becoming our cultural norm, even our cultural ideal.'
Bernstein has given this speech before, but his timing last week was superb. (For a local report, just click here.) Indeed, he could have been talking about Time’s decision to put Ann Coulter on its cover. Yes, when Time takes our craziest pundit and tries to mainstream her through its cover, we’re seeing the triumph of “idiot culture,” in which 'the weird, the stupid, the coarse and untrue are becoming our cultural ideal.” Put more simply, we’re seeing things falling apart.
What are “the consequences to our society” from the press corps’ idiot culture? In the campaign which transformed our national politics, they worked for two years to make Gore seem crazy. Now, they’re working to make Coulter seem sane. And yes, this is being driven by reactionary forces who want to roll back the last century’s advances. Because this is such an ominous event, we’ll discuss it for the rest of the week.
Daily Howler: Coulter makes ''errors'' like other scribes breathe. But store-bought John Cloud couldn't find them: "
Armando & kossacks on the lying David Brooks:
It is now pathological. The man is incapable of telling the truth. David Brooks lies in every column he writes. He brings to mind Mary McCarthy's famous remark concerning Lillian Hellman - "every word she writes is a lie - including 'and' and 'the.'"
Okay, I'm exaggerating a bit, but only a bit. Why? Because the central thesis of virtually every David Brooks column is a lie.
Daily Kos :: Lies: The New Truth
"I've come to the sad conclusion that EVERY ONE of Bush supporters lies non-stop
They start with lying to themselves, pretending to believe Iraq is a success and that the WMD fiasco didn't matter (or never happened). From those self appeasing lies is just a small step to lie to others.
They lie to fellow Bush supporters to keep them into the fold and silence any doubters, they lie to Bush opposers to avoid they greatest nightmare: having to admit they were wrong and admit Bush is a disaster.."
(A comment I posted on Dkos)
Daily Kos :: Lies: The New Truth:
Daily Kos :: Marla is gone, but Robin continues: UPDATE
Robin "fell in love" with the Iraqi people she befriended there last year during a fact-finding mission. She was appalled at the widespread suffering, and is determined to return with desperately needed medical supplies. She's established a nonprofit called Tomorrow's Children.
If supporters of the Constitution in Exile lose all three cases now before the Supreme Court, what happens next? The general consensus, according to Greve, is that the movement should focus its energies on the appointment of sympathetic judges. ''I think the judicial appointments are what matters most of all,'' Greve says. ''And Bush's renomination of the rejected judges is a way of saying, Let's cram the same judges back in their face. That's intended as a sign that they mean business.''
Three candidates recently renominated by Bush for positions on the federal appellate courts are sympathetic to the ideas of the Constitution in Exile movement. In addition to William Pryor, the former attorney general of Alabama whom Greve praises, there is Janice Rogers Brown, a justice on the California Supreme Court and an outspoken economic libertarian. An African-American and a daughter of sharecroppers, Brown has been promoted by many libertarians as an ideal Supreme Court candidate. Known for her vigorous criticism of the post-New Deal regulatory state, Brown has called 1937, the year the Supreme Court began to uphold the New Deal, ''the triumph of our socialist revolution,'' adding in another speech that ''protection of property was a major casualty of the revolution of 1937.'' She has praised the court's invalidation of maximum-hour and minimum-wage laws in the Progressive era, and at her Senate confirmation hearing in 2003, she referred disparagingly to ''the dichotomy that eventually develops where economic liberty -- property -- is put on a different level than political liberties.''
The New York Times > Magazine > The Unregulated Offensive
Judges only so good as Delay agrees with their decisions, otherwise "off with their heads" -- law
Yahoo! News - DeLay Continues Attacks on Federal Courts
Politics - AP
DeLay Continues Attacks on Federal Courts
2 hours, 14 minutes ago
Add to My Yahoo! Politics - AP
By JESSE J. HOLLAND, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON - House Majority Leader Tom DeLay says Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy's work from the bench has been "incredibly outrageous," his latest salvo at the federal judiciary in the weeks following the courts' refusal to stop Terri Schiavo's death.
DeLay also labeled a lot of the courts' Republican appointees as "judicial activists," a term applied by conservatives to judges they dislike for not following what they call strict interpretations of the Constitution.
The No. 2 Republican in the House has been openly critical of the federal courts since they refused to order the reinsertion of Schiavo's feeding tube. And he pointed to Kennedy as an example of Republican members of the Supreme Court who were activist and isolated.
"Absolutely. We've got Justice Kennedy writing decisions based upon international law, not the Constitution of the United States? That's just outrageous," DeLay told Fox News Radio on Tuesday. "And not only that, but he said in session that he does his own research on the Internet? That is just incredibly outrageous."
A spokeswoman for the court, Kathy Arberg, said Kennedy could not be reached for comment.
Although Kennedy was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Reagan, a conservative icon, he has aroused conservatives' ire by sometimes agreeing with the court's more liberal members. Nevertheless, it is unusual for a congressional leader to single out a Supreme Court justice for criticism.
Dan Allen, a DeLay spokesman, declined comment on the interview.
Democrats jumped on DeLay's comments Wednesday morning.
"Has the Internet become the devil's workshop?" said Dick Durbin of Illinois, the Senate's No. 2 Democrat. "Is it some infernal machine now that needs to be avoided by all right-thinking Americans? What is Mr. DeLay trying to say, as he is stretching to lash out at judges who happen to disagree with his political point of view."
Sen. Larry Craig (news, bio, voting record), R-Idaho, retorted: "Doesn't the other side have anything to talk about nowadays?"
DeLay also has been criticized for his comments following Schiavo's death, which came despite Congress' passage of a law giving the federal courts jurisdiction to review her case. They declined to intervene.
"The time will come for the men responsible for this to answer for their behavior," DeLay said in a statement.
He apologized last week, saying he had spoken in an "inartful" way.
Conservatives have been pushing to get the Senate to confirm President Bush's most conservative judicial nominees, which Senate Democrats are blocking. The House has no power over which judges are given lifetime appointments to the federal bench.
However, DeLay has called repeatedly for the House to find a way to hold the federal judiciary accountable for its decisions. "The judiciary has become so activist and so isolated from the American people that it's our job to do that," he said.
One way would be for the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the clause in the Constitution that says "judges can serve as long as they serve with good behavior," he said. "We want to define what good behavior means. And that's where you have to start."
WTF ?!? Does Delay thinks HE is all there is to America ? -- law
First they took out the lawmakers.
Then they took out the policy breakers.
Finally they took out the courts and the military.
And all that was left were the Reich, and their slaves.
Delay: "One way would be for the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the clause in the Constitution that says 'judges can serve as long as they serve with good behavior,' he said. 'We want to define what good behavior means. And that's where you have to start.' "
Daily Kos :: Delay goes Bat-shit Insane on Supreme Court Justice:
Is it just me or the guy looks evil ?
Yahoo! News - New Pope Inspired by Anti-War Pontiff
A self-fulfilling prophecy is a prediction that, in being made, actually causes itself to become true. For example, in the stock market, if it is widely believed that a crash is imminent, this may reduce confidence and actually cause such a crash. Or, if a candidate in an election openly declares he does not believe he can win, this may increase voter apathy and result in poor support for his campaign.
Self-fulfilling prophecy is sometimes seen as a manifestation of positive feedback in human society. In short, because a given prophecy was known, and was sufficiently credible, it affected people's actions and caused itself. Robert K. Merton is usually acknowledged as the maker of this phrase and using it in sociology.
Another example is Moore's law in semiconductor industry.
Examples abound in studies of cognitive dissonance theory and the related self-perception theory; People will often change their attitudes to come into line with what they profess publicly.
Other specific examples discussed in psychology include:
* Clever Hans effect
* expectancy effect
* Hawthorne effect
* placebo effect
* Pygmalion effect
Self-fulfilling prophecy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
alk about getting the last laugh.
Accompanying its wretched cover story on "Ms. Not Quite Right," the tall and not-even-good-looking far-right pundit Ann Coulter, the editors at Time have an equally nauseating photo essay of "candid" shots that Coulter was more than happy to turn over -- of her childhood, ex-boyfriends, etc.
Now check out this picture from last summer's GOP convention in New York! Here's the caption:
Demon and Idol: Protesters blast Coulter at the G.O.P. Convention in New York City last year.
As you can see, the shot shows Coulter with a red grafitti-style "X" over her mouth with a scrawled "ENEMY," and calls her a "Reactionary Neo-Imperialistic Criminal."
It also says the sign is from Communists for Kerry. That should have been a - pardon the hideous pun - red flag for those insightful Time editors. We know Time-Warner has had some accounting woes, but don't these guys have Google up in Manhattan?
Communists for Kerry is a right-wing JOKE, guys -- scroll to the end of this story and you'll see how a credulous Fox News was also duped by these folks last summer.
Maybe the alert editors at Time could have noticed the sign directly behind the Coulter "protest" -- it's from a group called "Criminals for Gun Control." Then there's the sign on the right, "Liberating Iraqi Children from Tyranny is Co$ting Too Much," from the infamous group called Protest Warrior.
As we reported last fall. Protest Warrior is a group of right-wing college students that went around to left-wing protests causing trouble. There appeared to be a close link between Protest Warrior and a Penn student named Scott Robinson who was linked in numerous reports last fall to the kicking of an AIDS protestor at the RNC in NYC last summer.
Attytood: Heh heh...Time has moronic cover AND gets duped!
The Scapegoat Society was formed.. for those concerned with the dynamics of attributing blame to others - the core of scapegoating and demonizing. ..
..Scapegoats are found in almost every social context: in school playgrounds, in families, in small groups, and in large organizations. Whole nations may be scapegoated...
Scapegoating is a hostile social - psychological discrediting routine by which people move blame and responsibility away from themselves and towards a target person or group. It is also a practice by which angry feelings and feelings of hostility may be projected, via inappropriate accusation, towards others.... Scapegoating has a wide range of focus: from "approved" enemies of very large groups of people down to the scapegoating of individuals by other individuals. Distortion is always a feature.
OUTLINE OF SCAPEGOATING PSYCHO-DYNAMICS
In scapegoating, feelings of guilt, aggression, blame and suffering are transferred away from a person or group so as to fulfill an unconscious drive to resolve or avoid such bad feelings. This is done by the displacement of responsibility and blame to another who serves as a target for blame both for the scapegoater and his supporters. The scapegoating process can be understood as an example of the Drama Triangle concept [Karpman, 1968].
The perpetrator's drive to displace and transfer responsibility away from himself may not be experienced with full consciousness - self-deception is often a feature. The target's knowledge that he is being scapegoated builds slowly and follows events. The scapegoater's target experiences exclusion, ostracism or even expulsion.
In so far as the process is unconscious it is more likely to be denied by the perpetrator. In such cases, any bad feelings - such as the perpetrator's own shame and guilt - are also likely to be denied. Scapegoating frees the perpetrator from some self-dissatisfaction and provides some narcissistic gratification to him. It enables the self-righteous discharge of aggression. Scapegoaters tend to have extra-punitive characteristics [Kraupl-Taylor, 1953].
Scapegoating also can be seen as the perpetrator's defense mechanism against unacceptable emotions such as hostility and guilt. In Kleinian terms, scapegoating is an example of projective identification, with the primitive intent of splitting: separating the good from the bad [Scheidlinger, 1982]. On another view, scapegoaters are insecure people driven to raise their own status by lowering the status of their target [Carter, 1996].
SCREW THE REPUBLICANS. ALL OF THEM. (Edited for Saturday)
by Delaware Dem
Fri Apr 15th, 2005 at 20:00:53 CDT
I am a Catholic. I try to live a good and moral life. I try to help others as Jesus taught. As such, I am a liberal. As such, I am a Democrat.
I am a proud member of the Democratic Party.
And today, I was told that if I do not support President Bush in everything he does, then I do not support Jesus. I do not support my faith. I indeed am in violation of my religious upbringing.
Diaries :: Delaware Dem's diary :: :: Trackback ::
Today was a Declaration of War in its most starkest terms. It was delivered to me just moments ago when I logged onto this site and read the Nazistic ramblings of a deranged Congressional leader of the Republican Party.
To Mr. Frist, I say, I hear you, and FUCK YOU.
Daily Kos :: SCREW THE REPUBLICANS. ALL OF THEM. (Edited for Saturday)
How George W. Bush became the head of the new American Dominionist Church/State
By Katherine Yurica
With Editorial and Research Assistant Laurie Hall
February 11, 2004
Image from GQ Magazine
[Editor's Note: On November 6, 2004 we corrected two sentences at accompanying endnote 58.]
[Editor's Note: On April 4, 2005 we corrected Gary North's Phd. from economics to history.]
The First Prince of the Theocratic States of America
It happened quietly, with barely a mention in the media. Only the Washington Post dutifully reported it. And only Kevin Phillips saw its significance in his new book, American Dynasty. On December 24, 2001, Pat Robertson resigned his position as President of the Christian Coalition.
Behind the scenes religious conservatives were abuzz with excitement. They believed Robertson had stepped down to allow the ascendance of the President of the United States of America to take his rightful place as the head of the true American Holy Christian Church.
Robertson’s act was symbolic, but it carried a secret and solemn revelation to the faithful. It was the signal that the Bush administration was a government under God that was led by an anointed President who would be the first regent in a dynasty of regents awaiting the return of Jesus to earth. The President would now be the minister through whom God would execute His will in the nation. George W. Bush accepted his scepter and his sword with humility, grace and a sense of exultation.
As Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court explained a few months later, the Bible teaches and Christians believe “… that government …derives its moral authority from God. Government is the ‘minister of God’ with powers to ‘revenge,’ to ‘execute wrath,’ including even wrath by the sword…”
George W. Bush began to wield the sword of God’s revenge with relish from the beginning of his administration, but most of us missed the sword play. I have taken the liberty to paraphrase an illustration from Leo Strauss, the father of the neo-conservative movement, which gives us a clue of how the hiding is done:
“One ought not to say to those whom one wants to kill, ‘Give me your votes, because your votes will enable me to kill you and I want to kill you,’ but merely, ‘Give me your votes,’ for once you have the power of the votes in your hand, you can satisfy your desire.”
Notwithstanding the advice, the President’s foreign policy revealed a flair for saber rattling. He warned the world that “nations are either with us or they’re against us!” His speeches, often containing allusions to biblical passages, were spoken with the certainty of a man who holds the authority of God’s wrath on earth, for he not only challenged the evil nations of the world, singling out Iraq, Syria, Iran, and North Korea as the “axis of evil,” but he wielded the sword of punishment and the sword of revenge against his own people: the American poor and the middle class who according to the religious right have earned God’s wrath by their licentiousness and undisciplined lives.
The Despoiling Of America
The economic argument AGAINST Peak Oil
Sam Koritz is hardly alone in thinking money will foster innovation that will save us from Peak Oil. In 1999 Discovery magazine published the quintessential economic argument against it:
Discover: Why We'll Never Run Out Of Oil
"If you pay smart people enough money they'll figure out all sorts of ways to get the oil you need."
At first, this argument makes sense. True enough, some people will do anything for more money and geologist and scientists are no exception. This in itself is ALSO a big problem, as any rise in Oil prices affects the global economy deeply. This was the subject of another diary of mine Daily Kos :: Oil prices and their ripple effect on the economy
But what if there is NO MORE OIL(1) to be had ?
Disaster on Easter Island: When Nature trumps Economy
This is what happened in Easter Island:
Ever more wood and rope were needed to move the effigies, but a growing population, coupled with the drive for bigger and bigger statues, wiped out the trees. ... given the island's extremely fragile ecology, they didn't grow back.
1. For some reason those huge statues were all the rage and every tribal chief wanted more, bigger and better statues.
2. But no matter how much money or prestige was showered into the statue builders, there came a time that there were NO MORE RAW MATERIALS to make them.
3. Importing them from other places was impossible with the islanders' technology at the time, since Easter Island is pretty isolated.
4. And then the economic fueled hunger for raw materials started an ecological disaster: Deforestation, i.e, all trees of the island were cut to cater to the "statue making industry".
5. By cutting all trees, the islanders created an even bigger ecological problem: soil erosion, wildlife migration. Which in turn made the yield of food from harvests and hunting decrease significantly and brought the onslaught of famine...
A deforested island suffered from soil erosion and a lack of food and raw materials. Starvation, a population crash, cannibalism, and social collapse followed. (2)
Famine on Easter Island a long way from famine due to lack of Oil on this century ?
I wouldn't be so sure... The recent, 1997, famine in North Korea, which killed 3 million people has it's roots on an Oil crisis not unlike the one we saw in Easter Island. And just as we saw in Easter Island, isolation, lack of technology and a fragile ecology combined into a deadly mix that started snowballing into bigger and bigger ecological problems such as starvation, population crash and even social collapse (3)
Daily Kos :: Peak Oil Myth and the Easter Island ecological disaster
"This Republican Party of Lincoln has become a party of theocracy." U.S. Representative Christopher Shays, R-CT, (New York Times, March 23, 2005)
Theocracy is derived from the two Greek words Qeo/j(Theos) meaning "God" and kra/tein (cratein) meaning "to rule." Theocracy is the civil rule of God, or the belief in government by divine guidance.
The powerful Majority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, Tom DeLay (R-TX) embodies government by divine guidance:
He [God] is using me, all the time, everywhere, to stand up for a biblical worldview in everything that I do and everywhere I am. He is training me.
Tom DeLay represents an ultraconservative religious movement seeking to impose a narrow theological agenda on secular society. Chip Berlet and Margaret Quigley, senior analysts at Political Research Associates, have named this movement the theocratic right:
The predominantly Christian leadership envisions a religiously-based authoritarian society; therefore we prefer to describe this movement as the "theocratic right."
Television preacher Pat Robertson sent out a memo to his political organization in 1986 calling on his followers to "Rule the world for God." That call to arms sums up the goals of the theocratic right, and explains their Congressional leadership which suspends the basic rules of Democracy: all that matters is winning, because it is for God. The ends justify the means. [Sounds familiar ? -- law]
Rise of the Religious Right in the Republican Party
The decline of oil will also mean no more asphalt for roads, no more lubricants for machinery. It will also mean the demise of electricity for there will be no more insulation for cables, no more oil for oil filled transformers and no more resins for dry type transformers, and no more heavy equipment to repair transmission towers when ice storms bring them down. Fuel cells won’t be able to provide electricity because they require a proton exchange membrane, which is a petrochemical product. 99% of all modern miracle materials are made from petrochemicals. Before oil, wheat fields used to yield 30 bushels per acre. With tractors and fertilizers and irrigation (all made possible by oil) yields increased to 130 bushels per acre. So soon agricultural yield will be reduced and millions will starve. It will also mean the end of the information age because printed circuit boards, packaging for IC chips and computer cases are petrochemical products. Even liquid crystals for computer displays are made from petrochemicals. It will also mean the end of the aviation industry. There is no substitute for oil in commercial aviation. There is no fuel source, which can pack as much energy into such a light weight. Aviation started when oil became available and will end when oil is gone. This of course also has grave military implications, as the world’s armies are utterly dependent on oil to extend their military might. No doubt most societies will become very unstable as evidenced by the behavior of groups who compete for a dwindling resource. So buying copious amounts of firearms would be a judicious investment. The people least affected will be groups such the Amish and the Hutterites, who eschew modern machinery. We should teach our children how to engage in agriculture using horses and handmade tools in order to insure their future survival and prosperity.
My Other Car is a Horse-Drawn Plow
Last year US soldiers told the IoS that they do not tell their superiors about attacks on them unless they suffer casualties. This avoids bureaucratic hassle and 'our generals want to hear about the number of attacks going down not up'. This makes the official Pentagon claim that the number of insurgent attacks is down from 140 a day in January to 40 a day this month dubious.
US casualties have fallen to about one dead a day in March compared with four a day in January and five a day in November. But this is the result of a switch in American strategy rather than a sign of a collapse in the insurgency. US military spokesmen make plain that America's military priority has changed from offensive operations to training Iraqi troops and police. More than 2,000 US military advisers are working with Iraqi forces.
With US networks largely confined to their hotels in Baghdad by fear of kidnapping, it is possible to sell the American public the idea that no news is good news. General George Casey, the top US commander in Iraq, said recently that if all goes well 'we shall make fairly substantial reductions in the size of our forces'. Other senior US officers say this will be of the order of four brigades, from 17 to 13, or a fall in the number of US troops in Iraq from 142,000 to 105,000 by next year.
The real change leading to the US troop reduction is probably more in the US than in Iraq. The White House finds its military commitment in Iraq politically damaging at home. The easiest way to bring the troops home is, as in Vietnam, to declare a victory and full confidence in US-trained Iraqi forces to win the war. These soldiers and police supposedly number 152,000, but it is not clear who is being counted.
The figure may include the 14,000 blue-uniformed Iraqi police in Nineveh province, the capital of which is Mosul, with a population of 2.7 million. But Khasro Goran, the deputy governor and Kurdistan Democratic Party leader in Mosul, told the IoS that the police had helped insurgents assassinate the previous governor.
Mr Goran said that when guerrillas captured almost all of Mosul on 11 November last year, the police had collaborated, abandoning 30 police stations without a fight. "They didn't fire on terrorists because they were terrorists themselves," he said. Some $40m-worth of arms and equipment was captured by the insurgents. It is a measure of how far the reality of the war in Iraq now differs from the rosy picture presented by the media that the fall of Mosul to the insurgents went almost unreported abroad because most journalists were covering the assault by the US marines on Fallujah.
Despite the elections on 30 January, the US problem in Iraq remains unchanged. It has not been defeated by the Sunni Arab guerrillas but it has not defeated them either. The US army and Iraqi armed forces control islands of territory while much of Iraq is a dangerous no-man's land.
UK Independent News:
"Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.
-- Anne Frank, who died at the Bergen-Belsen Nazi concentration camp only a few weeks before it was liberated.
Sixty years ago 24-year-old Dick Williams...
Daily Kos :: Commemorating the liberation of Bergen-Belsen
'I have never seen such horror in my life'
Sixty years on, the world must not forget Belsen, says liberator
Luke Harding in Berlin
Thursday April 14, 2005
Sixty years ago 24-year-old Dick Williams set off through the woods of northern Germany in search of a "refugee" camp. The previous day, a German officer had agreed to hand the camp over to the advancing British.
With only a map reference to guide him, Williams crossed the German frontline by jeep and turned left down an unmarked track. It was then that he found it: a vast concentration camp surrounded by a 10ft high barbed-wire fence and still guarded by armed SS soldiers.
We had only been told there was a camp there. We knew that it had dysentery and other problems, but we had no idea how big it was, or how many people were inside," he told the Guardian.
"We drove in. The sentry box was empty. We kept going. We then peered through the barbed-wire fence and saw around 100 SS soldiers, both men and women, lined up waiting for us."
Maj Williams, whose unit was responsible for providing water and food, was then escorted around the camp by two SS guards. "We had to thread our way through the dead bodies. The first ones were just 50 yards inside the camp," he said. "There were bodies scattered everywhere. Some had their hands on the barbed wire. Others were lying on the floor. Some were sitting up or resting against each other."
He added: "The biggest number of bodies was outside the hospital area. They were piled up, nose to tail, eight to nine high over a 30-yard area. There was some evidence they had tried to do some burying. We found more bodies in an open ditch. I have never seen such horror in my life.
Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | 'I have never seen such horror in my life'
The news that Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist plans to join a telecast whose organizing theme is that those who oppose some of President Bush's judicial nominees are engaged in an assault on "people of faith" is more than troubling; it is disingenuous, dangerous, and demagogic. We call on him to reconsider his decision to appear on the telecast and to forcefully disassociate himself from this outrageous claim.
Senator Frist must not give legitimacy to those who claim they hold a monopoly on faith. They do not. They assert, in the words of Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council and organizer of the telecast, that there is a vast conspiracy by the courts "to rob us of our Christian heritage and our religious freedoms." There is no such conspiracy. They have been unable to ram through the most extreme of the President's nominees, and now they are spinning new claims out of thin air. [...]
The telecast is scheduled to take place on the second night of the Passover holiday, when Jews around the world gather together to celebrate our religious freedom. It was in part for exactly such freedom that we fled Egypt. It was in part for exactly such freedom that so many of us came to this great land. And it is in very large part because of exactly such freedom that we and our neighbors here have built a nation uniquely welcoming to people of faith - of all faiths. We believe Senator Frist knows these things as well. His association with the scheduled telecast is, in a word, shameful. We call upon to him to disassociate himself from the claim that the Senate is participating in a filibuster against faith, and to withdraw his participation from the April 24th event.
-- Rabbi David Saperstein
Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
Daily Kos :: Exactly Such Freedom
The Republican Party of the United States, led by Sen. Bill Frist, is professing that not giving President Dubya every single one of the judicial nominations he's requested is being 'against people of faith'.
Now, any reasonable person might ask, WTF? How do you get from Point A -- having legitimate concerns about less than a dozen judges, out of the 200 confirmed (much better than the Republicans ever treated Clinton, we will point out YET AGAIN) -- to Point B, 'This is a religious war!' Being a reasonable person, I couldn't begin to tell you.
But Frist has made a political calculation. He and his party has mandated that any dissent from Pres. Bush's wishes -- even in a single vote -- is not to be tolerated, and if dressing Bush in the mantle of infallible God will gain him a few more legislative trinkets, that's exactly what he'll do.
That's not just politically craven, that's deeply offensive to every non-radical-nutcase-Christian in this country.
Point of note, Mr. Frist: I'm one of them.
Daily Kos :: Frist's Jihad
I am edified to learn that Dr Bill Frist, cat slayer, and Dr James Dobson, dauchshund beater, are joining hands to kill the independent judiciary. (As I have said before, while it's true that not all animal abusers become serial killers, it is true that the vast majority of serial killers were once animal abusers. Not that I'm saying that Frist and Dobson are serial killers ... let's just say that they are in some pretty disgusting company.)
As the Senate heads toward a showdown over the rules governing judicial confirmations, Senator Bill Frist, the majority leader, has agreed to join a handful of prominent Christian conservatives in a telecast portraying Democrats as "against people of faith" for blocking President Bush's nominees.
Fliers for the telecast, organized by the Family Research Council and scheduled to originate at a Kentucky megachurch the evening of April 24, call the day "Justice Sunday" and depict a young man holding a Bible in one hand and a gavel in the other. The flier does not name participants, but under the heading "the filibuster against people of faith," it reads: "The filibuster was once abused to protect racial bias, and it is now being used against people of faith."
The filibuster is being used against people of faith? Man, these wingnuts are feeling their oats.
Gawd I hope that the liberal media feel it is their duty to cover this telecast in great depth --- to show that they are not hostile to religion, of course. This would be a wonderful way for them to prove once and for all that they are fair and balanced and believe that these religious issues should be well covered in the press. I think we need to write to all the networks and demand that they cover this important story. We need to tell them that the people have a right to hear what their leaders are saying.
I cannot stress enough how important I think it is to draw the contrasts between the Democrats and Republicans right now. Their ducky president looks lamer and lamer by the day and both GOP leaders of the congress are overreaching badly with this public soul kissing of the extremist religious right. (Giving them any cover for this wacky morals crusade is just dumb. Don't go there, please.)
All we need to do is say we are defending the constitution. Most people may know nothing about civics in this country anymore, but they know damned well that disembowling one branch of government is not business as usual. This is a case where the Republicans have not done the spadework and spent years preparing the public with relentless soothing rhetoric meant to give the impression that this is a natural and inevitable political evolution that will disrupt nothing. Instead their rhetoric is uncharacteristically shrill and nervous. They are lurching around now, reacting to their riled up constituency and making mistakes.
They are leading the Senate to a big dramatic showdown and the stakes couldn't be higher. But we should not flinch. They are the ones in the spotlight, they are the ones who look hysterical, they are the ones who have the stink of desperation all over them, not us. Tone will be important, here. We should make sure that in the debate we are defending the constitution and tradition and we should do it in modest language with common sense rhetoric. The media will cover this and it will be a perfect chance for us to persuade the public through our temperate but unyielding approach that we are operating from principle and committment. The other side is going to work itself into a frenzy. We need to be calm and cool and united.
The media will trivialize the Democrats' position but we have to remember that this is also the kind of conflict they love so they'll cover it and give Democrats some time to make their case. We should be preparing right now for that opportunity with a set of strong and persuasive talking points that we stick with throughout the controversy. According to this widely reported recent WSJ poll, people are already nervous. They want the Democrats to act as a backstop for this wild nonsense. And that was before Schiavo. We should be prepared to say over and over again that we feel it is our duty to prevent the Republicans from radically altering our way of governance. Do you suppose that most people agree with this?:
I blame Congress over the last 50 to 100 years for not standing up and taking its responsibility given to it by the Constitution. The reason the judiciary has been able to impose a separation of church and state that's nowhere in the Constitution is that Congress didn't stop them. The reason we had judicial review is because Congress didn't stop them. The reason we had a right to privacy is because Congress didn't stop them.
That's the most powerful man in the US House of Representatives saying that, not some no-name preacher from Arkansas.
Luckily it seems the Harry Reid has the smarts and the cojones to realize that this is as much a defining issue for us as is social security and he's not going to flinch:
Alexander said Democrats "are badly misreading this politically" if they think the public would blame Republicans for a Senate breakdown orchestrated by Democrats. GOP aides say Frist has drawn the same conclusion. Nonetheless, Senate Democrats are vowing a scorched-earth response, noting that a single senator can dramatically slow down the chamber's work by insisting on time-consuming procedures that are normally bypassed by "unanimous consent."
They also are portraying Frist as a tool of GOP extremists. Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.), asked this week if the radical right is driving Frist and his lieutenants, replied: "If they decide to do this, which it appears they are going to, the answer is unequivocally -- underlined, underscored -- yes."
Frist's political instincts are not very good as he has proven over and over again and it seems to have precipitated this showdown too:
"I think Senator Frist has backed himself into a corner where I don't see how he can avoid pulling the nuclear trigger," said Charlie Cook, editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report. In terms of a presidential race, Cook said, "it hurts if he doesn't come up with the votes. But it also hurts him if the Senate comes to a grinding halt and can't get anything done. I think the guy's in a real jam."
I think Reid has the argument here and I think we will prevail. Just as newt failed to realize that it was his intemperate over-the-top rhetoric during the government shutdown that turned the people against him, these guys don't understand that allying themselves with the most extremist wing of the religious right is bound to do the same thing. Bubbles breed hubris and I think these people spend way too much time talking to each other.
Update: Does anyone out there know of any examples of moderate Republican religious types who have publicly come out against these recent extremist moves? I know that the polls indicate that a large number of them disagreed with the Schiavo matter, but I'm not aware of any of the people for whom morals are a voting issue moving away from the GOP because of it. Where I'm seeing the movement is in the libertarian, scientific and professional factions of the party.
For instance, I have not seen any full throated repudiations of the GOP by Republican religious moderates such as this from Bush voter, John Cole. My hunch is that people who vote on "morals" issues aren't actually moderates so they aren't disturbed in the least by what they are seeing. Therefore, posturing about the issue won't get us anywhere. But, who knows? It sure seems to me that the way to win is to go where the votes are up for grabs --- which seems to me to be among the people who really don't want James Dobson and Pat Robertson running the country.
If you don't share our politics, you hate the baby Jesus.
If you don't share our politics, you hate religious people.
If you don't share our politics, you are evil.
Congrats, Republicans. Our leaders have now taken the traditional rhetorical demonization of our opposition and elevated it to heavenly heights. I assume my friends on the right are going to spend the week-end attacking me for being a 'religious bigot' because I rightly point out the inappropriateness of this behavior. The usual suspects are front and center:
Some of the nation's most influential evangelical Protestants are participating in the teleconference in Louisville, including Dr. James C. Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family; Chuck Colson, the born-again Watergate figure and founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries; and Dr. Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
But why are you reading me? I hate religious people because I respect the role of religion in people's lives, but don't want religious texts or leaders dictating our domestic and foreign policy. And I really don't want them using God and religion as a weapon for petty partisan gain.
*** Update ***
I read this three times to make sure I wasn't missing a self-parody or an inside joke. I wasn't:
Is it the position of Frist's critics that it is illegitimate for the Majority Leader to give a speech to mainstream Christians? If so, then that is about as radical a tactic as we have seen in a long time --urging elected officials not to even speak to gatherings of the 40% of the country that attends church weekly. This is another outbreak of "religousrightitis", one that underscores the ongoing effort to delegitimize the right of people to vote their values if those values are based on a religious worldview, and it makes a mockery of the idea that Dems want to appeal to "values voters" when they are encouraging the equivalent of "shunning" by electeds.
Hugh Hewitt, at his best.
A.) He can talk to them all he wants. What frightens me is that you consider them mainstream Christians and that Frist agrees with their radical viewpoint that Democrats are voting the way they are because of anti-religious views.
B.) They can vote their values all they want. I vote mine. I just don't demand that their values be given the weight of law.
C.) How can they appeal to value voters? By your standards, there are none, because if you vote Democrat, you hate religion.
Vote Republican Or You Hate the Baby Jesus
It Affects You � Patriot act extends to blogs critical of government
An article in the Village Voice highlights a win for American values and liberty as a particularly heinous part of the Patriot Act has been struck down by a Federal District Judge. But it is also offers a chilling reminder of just how far reaching and anti-American this act really is.
"The provision we challenged [that the judge struck down]," says Jaffer, "allows the FBI to issue NSLs against 'wire or electronic service communication providers.' Telephone companies and Internet service providers [are included.]" As Judge Marrero noted, the FBI could also use an NSL "to discern the identity of someone whose anonymous web log, or 'blog,' is critical of the Government."
Jaffer adds that by requiring information from telephone companies and Internet providers, "The FBI could . . . effectively obtain a political organization's membership list, like the NAACP or the ACLU, [and could] obtain the names of people with whom a journalist has communicated over the Internet."
Furthermore - dig this - every National Security Letter comes with a gag order. The recipients are forbidden to tell any other person that the FBI has demanded this information, and can't even tell their lawyers that the long hand of the government is scooping up their data.
As Judge Marrero said in his decision, this omnivorous invasion of privacy is so broad that it mandates this gag rule "in every case, to every person, in perpetuity, with no vehicle for the ban to ever be lifted from the recipient."
Read that again. The abuses are so outrageous and so broad it is nothing less than an affront to our constitution. It's an affront to every red blooded, liberty loving American. Luckily, one of those pesky judges Ashcroft hates so much struck down this provision. We all need to watch this case as it moves up the courts. Bush and his likely new AG Gonzales are big advocates of the PA, so look for them to fight for this one. We must fight back to make sure this anti-liberty, un-American piece of legislation is ends up where it belongs or else we make a mockery of the words "liberty and justice for all."
Michael Schwartz must have thought I was just another attendee of the "Confronting the Judicial War on Faith" conference. I approached the chief of staff of Oklahoma's GOP Senator Tom Coburn outside the conference in downtown Washington last Thursday afternoon after he spoke there. Before I could introduce myself, he turned to me and another observer with a crooked smile and exclaimed, "I'm a radical! I'm a real extremist. I don't want to impeach judges. I want to impale them!
The Nation | Article | In Contempt of Courts | Max Blumenthal
GOP preaches the killing (yeah, as in murdering -- law) of judges in broad daylight.
The Nation | Article | In Contempt of Courts | Max Blumenthal
Michael Schwartz remarked during a panel discussion, "The Supreme Court says we have the right to kill babies and the right to commit buggery. They say the people have no right to express themselves, that the people have no right to make laws. Until we have a court that reflects a majority," Schwartz continued, his voice rising steadily, "it is a sick and sad joke that we have a Constitution here."
The right wing claims that judges should reflect majority opinion. But what is the majority opinion? After DeLay and Senate majority leader Bill Frist passed special bills ordering federal courts to consider the reinsertion of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube, according to a Gallup poll, Congress's public approval rating sank to 37 percent, lower than at any time since shortly after Republicans impeached President Bill Clinton. Meanwhile, 66 percent of respondents to a March 23 CBS News poll thought Schiavo's feeding tube should be removed. The notion that the Christian right's agenda is playing well in Peoria must be accepted on faith alone.
The recent right-wing fixation on impeaching judges was conceptualized by David Barton, Republican consultant and vice chairman of the Texas GOP. In 1996 Barton published a handbook called Impeachment: Restraining an Overactive Judiciary, which was timed to coincide with Tom DeLay's bid for legislation authorizing Congress to impeach judges. "The judges need to be intimidated," DeLay told reporters that year.
In 1989 Barton published a book titled The Myth of Separation, which proclaims, "This book proves that the separation of church and state is a myth." The Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs, in a critique of his 1995 documentary America's Godly Heritage, stated that it was "laced with exaggerations, half-truths, and misstatements of fact." Barton is on the board of advisers of the Providence Foundation, a Christian Reconstructionist group that promotes the idea that biblical law should be instituted in America. In 1991 Barton spoke at a Colorado retreat sponsored by Pastor Pete Peters, an adherent of racist Christian Identity theology with well-established neo-Nazi ties. During the 2004 presidential campaign, the Republican National Committee hired him as a paid consultant for "evangelical outreach." The RNC sponsored more than 300 events for him.
DeLay's bill, based on Barton's writings, failed due to lack of GOP support. But the judicial impeachment campaign was reignited six years later when a federal court ordered the removal of then-Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore's Ten Commandments monument from courthouse grounds. In February 2004 a group of about twenty-five enraged ministers and movement leaders gathered in Dallas to plot a new response. The Constitution Restoration Act was the result. According to Moore, he was a principal author, along with Herb Titus, the former dean of Pat Robertson's Regent University law school, and Howard Phillips, a veteran third-party activist whose US Taxpayers' Party served as a vehicle for the antigovernment militia movement during the 1990s. All three men stalked the halls of the downtown Marriott last Thursday and Friday.
In the Senate the bill was sponsored by Richard Shelby, a senator from Roy Moore's home state; among the co-sponsors is Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, who is contemplating a run for the Republican nomination for President. The bill was introduced on March 3, before the Terri Schiavo affair erupted, before Florida Circuit Judge George Greer ordered the removal of her feeding tube and before he became the poster-child for the right's judicial impeachment campaign.
How Bill Clinton revived a failing Presidency.
Tue Apr 12th, 2005 at 14:55:40 CDT
Looking back on the good old days of the 1990s, there are some clear lessons to be learned about the up and down Presidency of Bill Clinton that apply again today for the Democratic Party and Democratic candidates.
Recall that in the 1992, Bill Clinton became the first President in modern history not to ever be given the customary "honeymoon" treatment by either the mainstream press or by Congress.
Right from day one, a dissmissive and sarcastic attitude prevaded the media. Stories circulated that attempted to paint Clinton as a bumbling, sure-"one-term" President, his budget doomed, and his presidency a meaningless footnote. In addition, the press stooped to a new low in printing personal insults targeted squarely at a sitting First-Lady, the President's wife, and they even made the President's young daughter the butt end of snide remarks.
Diaries :: NewAmerica's diary :: :: Trackback ::
Despite pushing forward with a stunning record of acheivement in his first year: 1) the Deficit Reduction Act and new Federal Budget that worked! and turned around both the budget and the economy, 2) the Family Leave Act, 3) NAFTA (which was re-negotiated with new environmental and labor friendly riders which, although ultimately not enforced, was a sincere effort to do the right thing), and 4) re-establishing fiscal responsibility across government, the media noise machine left the public generally disapproving of Clinton.
In his second year, he passed the Brady-Bill and the Assault-Weapon ban as part of Anti-Crime and Community Policing legislation that led to the lowest crime rates this Country has ever seen in modern times. His big initiative, National Health Care, that can never be taken away, was temporarily embraced by the public, while he also worked to pass Campaign Finance legislation.
But then also in year two, the real media onslaught began with Ted Koppel and ABC running "WhiteWater" pieces virtually on a daily basis every night on TV (much like the hyped-up Iran hostage national crisis during Carter's Presidency) and a barrage of shrill attacks against Clinton's effort to pass a National Health Care, at times even from his own party, that worked to sink his popularity.
As a result, Newt Gingrich capitalized on this and successfully portrayed the Republican as the "good guys" by deflecting the real issues for fluff such as "term limits" and balanced budget admendment (with no specification of what would be cut), and "block grants" as part of the "Contract With America".
Even, social liberals like Bill Maher bought the right-wing act and fell for it.
So, with Republican's sweeping into Congress and Clinton's popularity sunk in the high 30s in polls, Bill Clinton was a dead duck. In late 1994 - early 1995, nobody thought that Bill Clinton was anything other than a sure one-term, "failed", President (despite the sharp elimination of the deficit, the thriving economy, rising incomes, and low crime). The press was happily printing his political obiturary and claiming that he was nothing more than a lame-duck, irrelevant, temporary occupier now.
So, how did Bill Clinton revive his Presidency?
Answer: By standing up (strongly) to Newt Gingrich and the Republicans and not giving up ground.
Gingrich and the Republicans all thought Clinton was too much of a whimp to do something as bold as shutdown the government, so they presented him with an ultimatum that either he sign a partisan-right-wing budget or Congress will just sit still and the government will be shut down upon his inaction, and thus, Clinton will be universally reviled and despised for his irresponisbility and incompetence. None of these guys ever thought that Bill Clinton could play "hardball" too.
Well, Clinton said no. The Government was shut down, and Clinton then spoke-out publically about what was going on and what the Republicans were really trying to do ( snuff out Medicare, etc. )
What happened? People got wise to the game. Instead of blaming and despising Bill Clinton (as expected by the GOP), they held Newt Gingrich and the Republicans as the primarily responsible party. Gingrich's poll numbers now began falling and Bill Clinton's began rising. But even more significantly, by standing up sharply and strongly in diametric opposition to the Right-Wing Agenda, a consensus then formed in the entire country that the Gingrich budget was probably not in their own best interests and that the Democratic alternative was the better choice for the future of the Country.
As we know, Gingrich (once floated as Presidential nominee for 1996 or 2000) was then exposed, Clinton's popularity fully rebounded and for the first time (despite his past policy successes) he was now seen and regarded as a strong leader and a strong President.
Needless to say, Clinton coasted to an easy re-election in 1996 and picked up a few seats in the process.
The lesson here is that accomodation given to extremists can never work. The public, and actually the whole world, is crying out for bold, imaginative, tough, hold-your-ground, progressive leadership. Bill Clinton when cornered at the brink of his political death, provided just that. That's how he won.
Daily Kos :: How Bill Clinton revived a failing Presidency.
Recently, nuclear experts have been debating the fate of the W76 warhead, which is a thermonuclear, or fusion, bomb.. [whose design is obviously flawed]...
So you're thinking 'what's the big deal? It'll only cost a few billion to fix this problem... right? We're used to defense spending. No biggie.' (that was sarcasm, by the way)
Well, arms control experts are arguing that the W76 overhaul and potential replacement could lead the way to new weapons. The UK Guardian reports:
Democrats and American arms control groups warned yesterday that a new Bush administration scheme to replace ageing nuclear warheads could be used as a cover for the eventual construction of a 'black arsenal' of new weapons.
The plan, known as the reliable replacement warhead programme (RRW), was unveiled this week by Linton Brooks, the head of the National Nuclear Security Administration.
Instead of maintaining the old stockpile by monitoring the warheads and replacing occasional spare parts, RRW would entail the design, production and deployment of a new generation of warheads. These would not require testing, and therefore would not break the US moratorium on nuclear tests.
Mr Brooks said the new warheads would be used in existing cold war era weapons. The construction of a warhead production facility would also maintain the expertise and infrastructure for the US to respond flexibly to new threats.
'We need to maintain the capability to respond to potential future requirements,' he said.
Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher, a California Democrat and one of the party's leading voices on military issues, alleged that the administration was using the scheme as a cover for developing a range of 'smaller and more usable' weapons which were blocked last year by Congress.
(Bold emphasis mine)
The 'smaller and more usable' weapons are the low-yield nuclear weapons known as 'bunker busters', the funding for which was blocked by Congress last year. Their proposed use would be for - you guessed it - destroying underground caches of chemical or biological weapons, kind of like the ones that were supposedly in Iraq.
Daily Kos :: Science Friday: A new generation of nuclear warheads?
The paper reaches two main conclusions:
First, the probability that any portable nuclear devices were lost prior to or after the breakup of the Soviet Union appears low; the scenarios of loss offered by the special commission in 1996 are actually the least plausible among other possible scenarios. This does not mean that the threat does not exist, but rather that at this moment, it is probably not the most immediate threat to the home security of the United States or to U.S. armed forces abroad.
Second, even if any devices were lost, their effectiveness should be very low or maybe even non-existent, especially if the loss occurred during the period of the greatest risk, in the early 1990s. Without scheduled maintenance, these devices apparently can produce only minimal yield and eventually possibly no yield at all, and can only serve as a source of small amounts of weapons-grade fissile materials.
Without detailed knowledge of the design of Soviet warheads, it would be impossible to know which components needed replacement at what time intervals. Two potential candidates are tritium and the neutron generator, which may use radioactive materials that decay over time. It seems possible, for example, that Soviet designers balanced on the threshold, using only just enough plutonium to achieve critical mass and relied on tritium to generate required yield. In that case, even modest degradation of tritium could have resulted in a significant drop of yield. Thus, it would be safe to assume that without proper maintenance, portable nuclear devices might still produce chain reaction, but yield would be minimal, and with time, possibly non-existent.
The "suitcase nukes saga" began in the fall of 1997, when General (Ret.) Alexander Lebed made several statements to the effect that during his short tenure as the Secretary of the Security Council in 1996, he received information that the separatist government in Chechnya possessed small nuclear devices. In an attempt to clarify the situation, he created a special commission under the chairmanship of his assistant, Vladimir Denisov. According to Lebed, the commission was only able to locate 48 such munitions of a total of 132, an indication that 84 were lost (subsequently Lebed changed the total number of suitcase nukes several times, stating in the end that the number was between 100 and 500, but probably closer to 100).
It should be noted that almost nothing is known about the methods of the commission's work: for example, whether it checked only records or was able to compare the actual inventory to records as well (if only records were checked, it cannot be said with certainty whether more warheads were missing or whether any warheads were missing at all). Since the commission was disbanded before it was able to complete its work, it has remained unclear whether it was able to confirm the alleged loss of warheads (i.e., it looked everywhere and failed) or simply did not have time to clarify the situation (Denisov's statement seems to imply the latter). It is not even known who the members of the commission were.
A well-known leader of the Russian ecological movement, academician Alexei Yablokov, immediately confirmed and expanded on Lebed's statements. He announced that 700 such devices, which he called "nuclear mines," had existed in the Soviet Union. Responding to statements from Ministry of Defense (MOD) officials that there were no portable nuclear devices in the records, Yablokov announced that these devices had been in the hands of the KGB, and thus, by definition, MOD records could not include them.
Official and semi-official Russian sources immediately denied Lebed's and Yablokov's stories, but their testimonies gradually revealed bits and pieces of information, raising suspicion that small nuclear devices did exist and even providing a glimpse of their properties. For example, the press secretary of Minatom, Georgi Kaurov, stated that, like the United States, the Soviet Union produced "very small nuclear weapons," and that "the ability to manufacture miniature nuclear weapons demonstrates a state's high level of technology and its ability to create multipurpose and even aesthetically attractive nuclear weapons." Another official said that these devices did not exist, but that if they had existed, their production and maintenance would have been very expensive. The chief of the 12th GUMO, Igor Valynkin, recently disclosed that the serial number of one of the "suitcases" that Lebed made public, RA-115, represented a "production index" (i.e., the type of munitions) and that the whole type had already been eliminated.
The difficulty of assessing the situation stems, first and foremost, from the fact that many, if not all, participants to the 1997-98 scandal could have had ulterior motives. At that time, Lebed was running for the governor of Krasnoyarsk Krai, with an option of running for President again in 2000. Yablokov, a perennial fighter against Minatom, was (still is) prepared to support anything that would help his cause; from a technical point of view, his testimony is particularly questionable. Russian MOD and Minatom officials could be expected to deny anything, regardless of whether allegations were completely or even partially correct. Several remarks about suitcase nukes from Arab sources in the late 1990s-early 2000s could have been prompted by a desire to promote or expose Usama bin Laden's terrorist organization. In the end, not a single source can be considered entirely reliable.
The Portrait of a Mini-Nuke'
...Nuclear mines are a well-known class of nuclear weapons. They were used by the Engineering troops and deployed along Soviet borders, primarily along the border with China. Nuclear mines were intended to create obstacles in the path of advancing enemy troops by altering the landscape and creating areas with high levels of radioactive contamination... the existence of smaller devices custom-designed for Special Forces, probably analogous to American small atomic demolition munitions (SADMs), should not be ruled out either. Lebed apparently referred to such munitions in his statements (some sources, including himself, mentioned the weight of 30 kg). Several broad considerations suggest that the story about portable nuclear devices should be taken seriously, with a caveat that their existence cannot be viewed as an established fact.
First and foremost, the very fact that the United States possessed such munitions makes it feasible that the Soviet Union produced them as well, if only to replicate the American experience
Sifting through available evidence, one can conclude that if such devices existed, they likely had the following characteristics:
* Small size (60x40x20 cm) and relatively light weight (probably upward of 30 kg). These parameters are generally consistent with available information about Soviet 152-mm artillery shells, as well as with the U.S. SADM.
* Low yield (less than 1 kt, maybe as low as 0.1 kt).
* Remained under control of the 12th GUMO (the Main Department at MOD in charge of handling all nuclear devices), were kept at or near MOD Special Forces (Spetsnaz) bases, as well as at central storage facilities, and were intended for transfer to Spetsnaz at short notice.
* Short life span between scheduled maintenance. According to the chief of the 12th GUMO, Igor Valynkin, small munitions required replacement of components every several months (other sources mentioned six months). Valynkin's statement is the most direct corroboration of the allegations about the existence of portable nuclear devices. Stationary nuclear mines with such a short warranty period simply did not make sense, while portable devices for use behind enemy lines could still be acceptable.
* Were likely equipped with reasonably sophisticated permissive action links (PALs), which should preclude unauthorized use. Also, there is unconfirmed information that some small nuclear devices (munitions for 152-mm howitzers) were kept during peacetime in 'half-assembled' state, i.e., parts were kept separately, although quick assembly in the case of war was possible."
CNS - "Suitcase Nukes": A Reassessment - September 23, 2002 - Research Story of the Week
DeLay 'Commiting Suicide': Senior GOP Lawmaker
Tue Apr 12th, 2005 at 12:45:51 CDT
In private, some senior leaders are saying it's only a matter of time before the most powerful Republican in Congress is forced from office. "Democrats should save their money. Why murder someone who is committing suicide?" said a senior GOP lawmaker, on condition of anonymity.
More sources are noticing the emperor has no clothes (after the jump)...
Diaries :: baldandy's diary :: :: Trackback ::
The irony is how the Democrats are emulating Newt Gingrich's 1989 campaign to oust Speaker Jim Wright, as related by this admonishment from a conservative activist:
"Republicans are suffering from what once helped them gain power," says Marshall Wittman, a former conservative activist now with the Democratic Leadership Council. "While nothing DeLay has done may be illegal, Republicans based their takeover on a revolution to make things different. I was part of it. Now, they're outdoing anything Wright did in terms of power. DeLay has intimidated the whole business community."
And the opinion of Ed Rollins, former Reagan official and party guru? As quoted in USA Today, Rollins "told reporters last week that DeLay is a 'polarizing figure' who should not be a prominent party spokesman. 'The more Tom is pushed into that role ... the more damaging he will be to Republicans,' Rollins said."
According to a Zogby poll, DeLay is viewed less favorably than a year ago by 40 percent of voters in his own district.
Weakening support was also evident in a survey commissioned by the Houston Chronicle in DeLay's suburban district. Taken by pollster John Zogby, whose work for candidates in both parties included DeLay's 2002 opponent, it showed that more people said they would vote now against DeLay than for him.
That follows last November's election in which the congressman received 55 percent, down from 63 percent in a somewhat different district two years earlier. It's too early to say whether the Democrats will come up with a candidate next year who can threaten DeLay at the polls, given the district's Republican majority.
The best available recap of his crimes (not that many Kossacks need the refresher), visit Molly Ivins.
Ivins' biggest complaint isn't the subsidized trips, the attack on jurists, or even finding $500,000 of "work" for his wife and daughter; it's abusing a children's charity to launder soft money:
Over the line is where Texas politicians would put using a children's charity as a cover for collecting soft money from special interest groups and then spending it on dinners, a golf tournament, a rock concert, Broadway tickets and so forth.
Because the money was supposedly for a charity, Celebrations for Children, Inc., special interests who wanted favors from DeLay were able to give him money without revealing themselves as campaign donors.
Daily Kos :: DeLay 'Commiting Suicide': Senior GOP Lawmaker
For those wondering what this is doing in a political blog... I meant to post it in my other "domestic" blog!
Or worse, the byline :
Sy Hersh Says It’s Okay to Lie (Just Not in Print)
The runaway mouth of America’s premier investigative journalist.By Chris Suellentrop
who is obviously none to happy about not having the same reputation and pulitzer prizes as Hersh.. -- law
Since the Abu Ghraib story broke eleven months ago, The New Yorker’s national-security correspondent, Seymour Hersh, has followed it up with a series of spectacular scoops. Videotape of young boys being raped at Abu Ghraib. Evidence that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi may be a “composite figure” and a propaganda creation of either Iraq’s Baathist insurgency or the U.S. government. The active involvement of Karl Rove and the president in “prisoner-interrogation issues.” The mysterious disappearance of $1 billion, in cash, in Iraq. A threat by the administration to a TV network to cut off access to briefings in retaliation for asking Laura Bush “a very tough question about abortion.” The Iraqi insurgency’s access to short-range FROG missiles that “can do grievous damage to American troops.” The murder, by an American platoon, of 36 Iraqi guards.
Not one of these exclusives appeared in the pages of The New Yorker, however. Instead, Hersh delivered them in speeches on college campuses and in front of organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union and on public-radio shows like “Democracy Now!” In most cases, Hersh attaches a caveat—such as “I’m just talking now, I’m not writing”—before unloading one of his blockbusters, which can send bloggers and reporters scurrying for confirmation.
Every writer understands that there is a gap between the print persona and the actual self, but Hersh subscribes to a bright-line test, a wider chasm than is usually acknowledged, particularly in today’s multimedia age.
There are two Hershes, really. Seymour M. is the byline. He navigates readers through the byzantine world of America’s overlapping national-security bureaucracies, and his stories form what Hersh has taken to calling an “alternative history” of the Bush administration since September 11, 2001.
Then there’s Sy. He’s the public speaker, the pundit. On the podium, Sy is willing to tell a story that’s not quite right, in order to convey a Larger Truth. “Sometimes I change events, dates, and places in a certain way to protect people,” Hersh told me. “I can’t fudge what I write. But I can certainly fudge what I say.”
And in bending the truth, Hersh is, paradoxically enough, remarkably candid. When he supplies unconfirmed accounts of military assaults on Iraqi civilians, or changes certain important details from an episode inside Abu Ghraib (thus rendering the story unverifiable), Hersh argues that he’s protecting the identities of sources who could face grave repercussions for talking. “I defend that totally,” Hersh says of the factual fudges he serves up in speeches and lectures. “I find that totally not inconsistent with anything I do professionally. I’m just communicating another reality that I know, that for a lot of reasons having to do with, basically, someone else’s ass, I’m not writing about it.”
Hersh insists that he takes great pains to be right when it counts the most—that is, when he writes, not when he talks—and that his close ties with the underside of the defense world are the reason he’s so confident about his understanding of that reality. “I’m not working with guys outside the system,” he tells me. “You do understand that, don’t you? I’m not outside the system in what I do. I’m really not.”
Hersh’s colleagues say that he’s achieved mastery of his beat thanks to his reputation as someone who’d never compromise a source—and who will go to any length to find one. “It’s sort of like being a spy,” says Warren Strobel, a Washington-based Knight Ridder reporter who, with Jonathan Landay, wrote some of the most skeptical prewar coverage of the Bush administration’s WMD claims. “It takes years to develop sources who will talk to you and not talk to very many other journalists, which he obviously has. . . . The version of reality that he has described in his writing, since 9/11, to me is a lot closer to reality than the version of reality that the administration has described, whether it be WMD in Iraq, or the abuses at Abu Ghraib, or secret policies in Iran.”
Sy Hersh's Loose Relationship With the Literal Truth
Hersh's reasons to muddle the references make sense to me -- law
New Bolton Scandals Emerging?
Thu Apr 14th, 2005 at 21:02:02 CDT
Steve Clemons quotes the plugged in Nelson Report suggesting that new John Bolton scandals may emerge over the weekend:
There seems to be in-fighting over the previously gentlemanly agreement between Chairman Lugar and Ranking Dem Biden, and it's not clear if the Dem's threat to filibuster Bolton next week is serious, or a holding play to give State Department career professionals more time to come forward with evidence proving charges that Bolton falsified testimony prepared for Condi Rice, and/or took classified intel from the NSA to try and punish then-DPRK negotiator Jack Pritchard, among the stories circulating today.
It also sounds like Rhode Island Sen. Lincoln Chafee is starting to realize that if he's 20 points down now for reelection, standing by Bolton may not be a smart move. So stay tuned. . .all it takes is one Republican committee defection to kill the nomination.
Does anyone know what Nelson is talking about here? Preparing false testimony for Condi? Stealing classified intel from the NSA? Are these stories for real? Are we about to see the return of Bernard Kerik?
Daily Kos :: New Bolton Scandals Emerging?