Not In My Bible
Saturday, May 07, 2005
President Bush said Saturday the United States played a role in Europe's painful division after World War II — a decision that helped cause "one of the greatest wrongs of history" when the Soviet Union imposed its harsh rule across Central and Eastern Europe.
Bush said the lessons of the past will not be forgotten as the United States tries to spread freedom in the Middle East.
"We will not repeat the mistakes of other generations, appeasing or excusing tyranny, and sacrificing freedom in the vain pursuit of stability," the president said. "We have learned our lesson; no one's liberty is expendable. In the long run, our security and true stability depend on the freedom of others."
Bush singled out the 1945 Yalta agreement signed by Roosevelt in a speech opening a four-day trip focused on Monday's celebration in Moscow of the 60th anniversary of Nazi Germany's defeat.
Where to begin. So many lies in this sewage.
1. FDR didn't "appease or excuse tyranny" in 1945. The Soviet Army occupied all of eastern Europe. Despite Patton's deranged wish to re-arm the wehrmacht (who would have approved this?), hook them up with allied forces and launch WW III against Stalin, it simply couldn't have happened. By 1945, everybody on the planet but Patton was sick of war and wanted it to be over. Had Patton had gotten his pipe dream, the Soviet Army outmanned and outgunned the allies by a factor of six or seven, even if all allied soldiers would have put up with such stupidity, which wouldn't have happened. And before you say, "atomic bombs," we didn't have any until August (seven months after the Yalta conference), and then only three, one of which was used in the test. By then, Soviet forces would have been soaking their feet on all coasts of western Europe while hundreds of thousands of allied soldiers' bodies rotted in the summer sun.
2. The allies fought WW II in the Pacific and Europe to free nations occupied by invaders, and to end their dreams of world conquest. King Goerge is now the invader in Iraq.
3. King Goerge and his neocon fascist junta care as much about "the freedom of others" as I care about "Survivor."
It's bad enough King Goerge is an idiot. He ought not talk to the rest of us as if we were, too.
Because I want you guys to come home real soon, she said.
But Nick Ziolkowski didn't come home alive. The Boy's Latin School grad, a Marine for three years when he shipped out to Iraq last June, was killed on a Fallujah rooftop by a sniper in November.
Miller will celebrate Mother's Day May 8 minus one of her two sons, but the day will be a celebration of Nick's life.
"If these reports are true, this minister is not only acting extremely inappropriately by injecting partisan politics into a house of worship, but he is also potentially breaking the law," Meek said.
Disfellowshipped members, some there for 30-40 years, file formal complaint with IRS. (See WLOS video.)
One day in 1992, when Pat Robertson thought the CNN cameras weren't rolling, he fretted about homosexuals conspiring to harsh his mellow. (Windows Media video) 5/6
President Bush's experiments in Afghanistan and Iraq created his own chimeras, by injecting feudal and tribal societies with the cells of democracy, and blending warring factions and sects. Some of the forces unleashed are promising; others are frightening.
In a chilling classified report to Congress last week, Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, conceded that Iraq and Afghanistan operations had restricted the Pentagon's ability to handle other conflicts.
That's an ominous admission in light of North Korea's rush toward nukes, which was spurred on by the Iraq invasion and North Korea's conviction that, in bargaining with Mr. Bush, real weapons trump imaginary - or chimerical - ones.
The U.S. invasion also spawned a torture scandal, and its own chimeric (alas, not chimerical) blend of former enemies - the Baathists and foreign jihadists - with access to Iraqi weapons caches.
The Republican Party is now a chimera, too, a mutant of old guard Republicans, who want government kept out of our lives, and evangelical Christians, who want government to legislate religion into our lives.
But exploiting God for political ends has set off powerful, scary forces in America: a retreat on teaching evolution, most recently in Kansas; fights over sex education, even in the blue states and blue suburbs of Maryland; a demonizing of gays; and a fear of stem cell research, which could lead to more of a "culture of life" than keeping one vegetative woman hooked up to a feeding tube.
Oddly, there was a chimera on "CSI: Crime Scene tonight." Omen or coincidence? You be the judge.
Before conservatism was full-blown fascismBarry had his many problems, but at least he was right once in his life.
"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."
Barry Goldwater, September 16, 1981
''I've got great faith in my son, but I don't know anything about it other than what I've read in the papers,'' Jim Tanquary said. ''Whatever has transpired down there (in Colombia), it's not something he's done for his own personal gain.''
Which makes it all good, I suppose.
A 1935 letter from President Franklin Roosevelt to an Oklahoma Baptist preacher puts the lie to George W. Bush’s stump-speech references to Roosevelt and his arguments that Social Security should be privatized.
The letter, which we just obtained, also offers convincing proof that once upon a time the faith community was looked to by those in government for ways to improve “the spiritual and material conditions for the American people.” The difference could not be more striking. Bush uses the Christian Right to divide and threaten Americans. Roosevelt looked to America’s spiritual leaders for advice on how government could help the people – all the people.
In his Sept. 24, 1935 letter to the Rev. A.F. Whitehurst of Kingfisher, Oklahoma, Roosevelt wrote, “I am particularly anxious that the new Social Security Legislation just enacted, for which we have worked so long, providing for old age pensions, aid for crippled children and unemployment insurance, shall be carried out in keeping with the high purposes with which this law was enacted.”
Rev. Emilee Whitehurst of Austin, a passionate progressive pastor and the great grand-niece of Rev. Amos Whitehurst, the recipient of Roosevelt’s letter, regards the missive as a family treasure. If it helps derail Bush’s cynical attacks on social security, it might become a national treasure. In it, Roosevelt alludes to the great democratic mission of America, a mission which recognizes the strength of our common purposes and the pursuit of social and economic justice.
Also, "Why King Goerge hates Social Security" (scroll down at link)
Dr. Aitken said, however, that scholars now believe the number in question has very little to do the devil. It was actually a complicated numerical riddle in Greek, meant to represent someone's name, she said.
"It's a number puzzle -- the majority opinion seems to be that it refers to [the Roman emperor] Nero."
Revelation was actually a thinly disguised political tract, with the names of those being criticized changed to numbers to protect the authors and early Christians from reprisals. "It's a very political document," Dr. Aitken said. "It's a critique of the politics and society of the Roman empire, but it's written in coded language and riddles."
Will King Goerge's "crackdown on obscenity" include his administration's lies, crimes and warmongerings?What about torturing people who haven't been convicted of anything?
Friday, May 06, 2005
Now it's back in the GOP and Southern Baptist Convention. Replace "Aryan" with "christian," and everything Hitler did is popular again. He started with Jews and eventually rounded up queers, intellectuals, Slavs, gypsies and many other "sub-humans." Our own right-wing extremists started with "libruls." Today their lists of "sub-Americans" include queers, intellectuals, judges, news media, Hollywood celebrities. If you think you're safe, tell it to the German Jew WWI veterans who disappeared in Hitler's death camps in the 1930s.
Evolution Isn't a Natural Selection Here
Kansas looks again at whether teachers should be allowed to present non-scientific theories.
CLAY CENTER, Kan. — In this rural swath of northern Kansas, where the grass rolls thick and green to the horizon, a white cross dominates the landscape.
Kathy Martin, a member of the state board of education, and her family built it on their farm this spring, gathering weathered chunks of limestone from the horse pasture and laying them on a hillside.
The cross is a proud expression of Martin's faith. And as hearings challenging the role of evolution in the state's school science curriculum began Thursday, that cross left little doubt about where she stood in the debate.
"Evolution is a great theory, but it is flawed," said Martin, 59, a retired science and elementary school teacher who is presiding over the hearings. "There are alternatives. Children need to hear them…. We can't ignore that our nation is based on Christianity — not science."
The hearings in Topeka, scheduled to last several days, are focusing on two proposals. The first recommends that students continue to be taught the theory of evolution because it is key to understanding biology. The other proposes that Kansas alter the definition of science, not limiting it to theories based on natural explanations.
Whichever curriculum proposal the board adopts in a vote planned for this summer, members say, it would serve only as a guideline for teachers, thus giving educators more leeway in the classroom. But the standards do determine what is included on statewide tests, and students would be required to learn that material.
"Part of our overall goal is to remove the bias against religion that is in our schools," said William Harris, a chemist who was the first witness to speak Thursday on behalf of changing the state's curriculum. "This is a scientific controversy that has powerful religious implications."
Dozens of national and state science organizations are boycotting the hearings, which they see as an effort to introduce creationism and "intelligent design" into the classroom. Intelligent design is a concept that asserts that life on Earth is so complex that a higher power must have played a role in its creation.
"Public hearings and votes are not how the 'truth' of science is determined," said Harry McDonald, president of Kansas Citizens for Science. "We don't have to lend the credibility of science to the hearings."
Brian Sandefur, a board member of Intelligent Design Network, a nonprofit organization based in Shawnee, Kan., wondered: "Are they afraid to show up? Are they afraid to defend themselves?"
The debate over Kansas' curriculum, political experts say, reflects a broader effort by conservative Christian groups to move their agendas forward by electing like-minded officials at the state and local levels.
"Now the conservative Christians expect to get things done and they expect politicians they have backed to deliver for them," said John Green, director of the Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron in Ohio. "In cases where they have more influence, such as the Kansas school board, they're going to do it themselves."
Kansas isn't alone in the debate over teaching evolution.
Local school boards in Georgia and Pennsylvania recently voted to alter their science curriculums and provide for the teaching of alternative theories. Both moves are being challenged in court. And the Ohio Department of Education passed a measure ensuring that teachers could hold classes that challenged the theory of evolution.
At least nine states, including Kansas, are considering bills that would affect how evolution is taught in their schools, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Kansas has flip-flopped on the issue over the last six years. In 1999, the board of education — then dominated by conservative Republicans — voted to reject evolution as a scientific theory and erased most references to it from the state curriculum.
Faced with criticism from around the nation, the state's voters changed the makeup of the board the following year, and the policy was reversed.
"After that, people in Kansas felt as if the conservative right had reached its apex," said Allan Cigler, a professor of political science at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. "People were wrong. The far right was just waiting for the next issue to rally around."
It came in 2004, with the debate over gay marriage. Evangelical ministers from some of the Midwest's largest churches mobilized their congregations and encouraged them to head to the polls. (This spring, Kansas voters overwhelmingly approved a far-reaching ban on gay marriage.)
The churches also kept an eye on seats that could be politically helpful on the state board of education, said the Rev. Terry Fox, pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Wichita, Kan.
"We encouraged people to elect a conservative school board" to revive the evolution debate, Fox said. "It was a piece of cake. It was such a low-flying election, no one was paying attention."
Last spring the 6th District seat on the board — which then was evenly split between conservative Republicans and moderate Republicans and Democrats — emerged as vulnerable.
The incumbent, moderate Republican Bruce Wyatt of Salina, was not a strong favorite in the mostly rural region that covers 17 counties.
One point of voter concern was evolution: While campaigning, Wyatt had noted that a routine review of the state's science standards would be held in 2005 and that he supported leaving the standards alone.
Martin disagreed. She is proud of her faith. She believes God created her and all mankind. It's a conviction shared by many in this agricultural town.
The only office that Martin, a teacher for 30 years, had ever held was treasurer of her college sorority. When a fellow teacher suggested she run against Wyatt, Martin said, she was skeptical.
But after meeting with conservative and religious leaders, who were looking for another Republican candidate to upset Wyatt, she changed her mind.
"I prayed, and God helped me decide. Suddenly, I was traveling all over the state, talking to people," Martin said. "I kept running into strangers who were working on behalf of my campaign."
Martin won the August primary with more than 60% of the vote. She ran unopposed in November. Now, she is at the center of Kansas' latest debate over the teaching of evolution.
This year a 26-member team of doctors, professors and schoolteachers studied the state's science standards and wrote a 107-page proposal, suggesting that the curriculum remain largely unchanged.
But in March, eight people on that committee submitted a 19-page minority report to the state education board, suggesting that teachers discuss alternative theories with their students.
In a crowded meeting hall across the street from the state Capitol on Thursday, more than 100 onlookers and members of the news media listened as the first of the hearing's 23 expert witnesses explained why the theory of evolution was flawed.
Christine Caffy, 15, carefully took notes on each speaker's position. The ninth-grader from Bishop Seabury Academy in Lawrence had recently studied evolution in her biology class and came here to learn more about the debate.
Afterward, she was curious and confused.
"I came here thinking that I understood evolution, that I understood the facts," Christine said. "But now, I don't know what to think. Who's right? Is the science that I'm learning really true?"
That sentiment infuriates scientists, a group of whom had gathered nearby. They insisted that though evolution should be open to criticism, the classroom was not the place for critiques based on religion.
"If you want to know about science, ask a scientist. If you want to know about faith, ask a minister," said Robert Hagen, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Kansas. "If I were to go into that hearing and tell them why the 'science' of intelligent design is wrong, I'd have to get into such detail that most people would just glaze over."
Although the issue has yet to be decided, some teachers said they have seen subtle changes in student behavior.
"We're just getting to evolution now, and I have one student who puts his head down on his desk to show he's not paying attention," said Brad Williamson, a biology teacher at Olathe East High School in Olathe, Kan., about 20 miles southwest of downtown Kansas City, Mo. "Others say they're not comfortable. It's very difficult, because you spend months and months gaining their trust to even broach the subject, and now they're shutting down."
There is a growing sentiment that, no matter what is said during the hearings, the board of education has already decided how it will vote.
"I respect all viewpoints and I will listen to their ideas," Martin said this week. "But I don't see me changing my mind."
The 125-million-year-old fossils show features of two-legged carnivorous dinosaurs called maniraptorans, from which birds are believed to have evolved, they said.
The fossils also have leaf-shaped teeth, stubby legs and the expansive bellies of plant-eaters, the researchers reported in this week's issue of the journal Nature. The new species is named Falcarius utahensis, meaning "sickle-maker from Utah."
"Falcarius is literally a missing link," Scott Sampson, chief curator at the Utah Museum of Natural History, told a news conference.
The finds, which are 50 million years older than any other fossil fish in Africa, will help provide a "missing link" in the evolution of early fish.
The first of eight fossil specimens was dug up in 1994, and named "Nelson" after the newly elected president.
The research is being conducted by a UK-South African team of scientists.
The minister of a Haywood County, North Carolina Baptist church is telling members of his congregation that if they're Democrats, they either need to find another place of worship or support President Bush.
Already, the Reverend Chan Chandler has ex-communicated nine members of East Waynesville Baptist Church. Another 40 members have left in protest. During last Sunday's sermon, he acknowledged that church members were upset because he named people, and he says he'll do it again because he has to according to the word of God.
Chandler could not be reached for comment Friday, but says his actions weren't politically motivated. One former church member says Chandler told some of the members that if they didn't support George Bush, they needed to resign their positions and get out of the church, or go to the altar, repent and agree to vote for Bush.
A former church treasurer says she's at church to worship God and not the preacher.
Eighty-eight members of Congress (out of 435) have signed a letter authored by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) calling on President Bush to answer questions about a secret U.S.-UK agreement to attack Iraq, RAW STORY has learned.
In a letter, Conyers and other members say they are disappointed the mainstream media has not touched the revelations.
"Unfortunately, the mainstream media in the United States was too busy with wall-to-wall coverage of a "runaway bride" to cover a bombshell report out of the British newspapers," Conyers writes. "The London Times reports that the British government and the United States government had secretly agreed to attack Iraq in 2002, before authorization was sought for such an attack in Congress, and had discussed creating pretextual justifications for doing so."
"In the name of womanhood and humanity..."
The radical origins of Mother’s Day: Julia Ward Howe's strident call for women to oppose the wars of men.
The meetings between Abramoff's lobbying team and the administration ranged from Attorney General John Ashcroft to policy advisers in Vice President Dick Cheney's office, according to his lobbying firm billing records.
Abramoff, a $100,000-plus fundraiser for Bush, is now under criminal investigation for some of his lobbying work. His firm boasted its lobbying team helped revise a section of the Republican Party's 2000 platform to make it favorable to its island client.
WASHINGTON -- President Bush bowed his head Thursday to mark the National Day of Prayer, (1) giving thanks for freedom and asking God's help in defending it.
The president, who says he prays every day, (2) did so this time in front of an East Room filled with people of many different faiths. (3) Bush said freedom is a gift from God meant for all people and (4) he prays ''for help in defending the gift of freedom from those who seek to destroy it.''
''We know that a God (5) who created us for freedom is not indifferent to injustice or cruelty or evil, (6) so we ask that our hearts may be aligned with his and (7) that we may be given the strength to do what is right and (8) help those in need,'' Bush said. ''We who (9) ask for God's help for ourselves, (10) have a particular obligation to care for the least of our brothers and sisters within our midst.''
How many more can you find in the rest of his words?
Espionage isn't on the menu. Then again, it wouldn't be, would it? It wasn't the limp pasta, however, that brought Larry Franklin, a Pentagon analyst working the Iran desk in Douglas Feith's policy shop, to the Tivoli that day. As Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball reported in Newsweek: "Suddenly, and quite unexpectedly, in the description of one intelligence official," Franklin "'walked in' to the lunch out of the blue." He had sensitive information about the possibility of pro-Iranian groups in Iraq, such as the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) and the Dawa Party, launching attacks on American occupation forces. Franklin, known as a committed ideologue of the neoconservative persuasion, and passionately committed to Israel, divulged [.pdf] the contents of a document marked "top secret" and dated June 25.
The FBI agents who were listening in were shocked: they had the Tivoli bugged that day as part of a larger and long-standing investigation into Israeli covert operations in the U.S. When Franklin barged in unexpectedly on the assembled cabal, he stumbled into a web of espionage in which he was soon ensnared. The FBI put him under surveillance.
Much more. Also see ARCHIVES 05/01/2005-05/07/2005
The recent arrest of Pentagon analyst Larry Franklin on charges that he handed over vital U.S. secrets to Israel recalls the wave of stories about Israeli spies in the U.S. in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Weeks after the attacks, the Washington Post ran a story saying that at least 60 Israelis had been rounded up and deported back to Israel -- under the same legal rubric that permitted the round-up of suspected Islamists. A year later, the London Telegraph reported:
"Up to 200 young Israelis, some of them former members of military intelligence units, have been arrested in America in the past year, a leaked government report disclosed yesterday."
What were the Israelis up to? In December 2001, the Fox News network ran a four-part series that started out with this jaw-dropping statement:
"There is no indication that the Israelis were involved in the 9-11 attacks, but investigators suspect that they Israelis may have gathered intelligence about the attacks in advance, and not shared it. A highly placed investigator said there are 'tie-ins.' But when asked for details, he flatly refused to describe them, saying, 'evidence linking these Israelis to 9-11 is classified. I cannot tell you about evidence that has been gathered. It's classified information.'"
Writing in The Scotsman, Neil Mackay told the shocking story of how a group of Israeli agents were apprehended hours after 9/11:
"There was ruin and terror in Manhattan, but, over the Hudson River in New Jersey, a handful of men were dancing. As the World Trade Centre burned and crumpled, the five men celebrated and filmed the worst atrocity ever committed on American soil as it played out before their eyes.
"Who do you think they were? Palestinians? Saudis? Iraqis, even? Al-Qaeda, surely? Wrong on all counts. They were Israelis – and at least two of them were Israeli intelligence agents, working for Mossad, the equivalent of MI6 or the CIA.
"Their discovery and arrest that morning is a matter of indisputable fact. To those who have investigated just what the Israelis were up to that day, the case raises one dreadful possibility: that Israeli intelligence had been shadowing the al-Qaeda hijackers as they moved from the Middle East through Europe and into America where they trained as pilots and prepared to suicide-bomb the symbolic heart of the United States. And the motive? To bind America in blood and mutual suffering to the Israeli cause."
The young Israelis worked for a moving company whose owner soon fled to Israel (just like Naor Gilon, the Israeli embassy official who met with Franklin, is hightailing it back home). Found in their possession was a large amount of cash, multiple passports, knives such as those used by the 9/11 hijackers, and "fresh pictures of the men standing with the smouldering wreckage of the Twin Towers in the background. One image showed a hand flicking a lighter in front of the devastated buildings, like a fan at a pop concert."
An Israeli connection to 9/11? If their intelligence services were watching the hijackers and didn't tell us, then their activities amount to complicity.
Go here to read the dozens of "mainstream" news stories about Israel's vast spy operation in the U.S. -- and its connection to the events surrounding the worst terrorist attack in American history.
A recent news story on the Franklin spy scandal reports that the current investigation into Israeli covert activities in the U.S. was begun "since at least 2002" -- coinciding with the immediate aftermath of 9/11.
Go here to purchase the book that details of Israel's cloak-and-dagger shenanigans on American soil -- The Terror Enigma: 9/11 and the Israeli Connection.
See ARCHIVES at lower right, 05/01/2005-05/07/2005 for more on spying, treason and King Goerge's administration.
Some religious political leaders are fond of invoking the nation's founders as kindred spirits. But those founders - a notably fiery, opinionated bunch - seldom spoke with one voice on any issue, especially when it came to the federal judiciary. How Thomas Jefferson or Alexander Hamilton would have felt about Senate filibusters against judicial nominees we can only speculate, as the filibuster wasn't introduced until 1825.
But as for denying money to or dismantling courts, historians can speak with far greater authority. This is because we are witnessing a re-enactment of a historic drama that unfolded two centuries ago, shortly after Thomas Jefferson's election as president.
First some background. At the time of the Constitutional Convention, it was widely assumed that the judiciary would be the feeblest branch of government. The very order of the Constitution's articles - with the legislature covered in Article 1, the executive in Article 2, and the judiciary in Article 3 - tacitly underscored the presumed order of importance.
This didn't please everyone, especially New York's legal wunderkind and the impresario of The Federalist Papers, Alexander Hamilton. In Federalist No. 78, he fretted that the judiciary "has no influence over either the sword or the purse ... and must ultimately depend upon the aid of the executive arm even for the efficacy of its judgments." In No. 79, he brooded about abuses that might arise from legislative tampering with judges' salaries. "In the general course of human nature," he wrote, "a power over a man's subsistence amounts to a power over his will."
To offset these handicaps, Hamilton endorsed the constitutional provision that federal judges should serve for life, subject to impeachment only for official misconduct, not for unpopular decisions: "The complete independence of the courts of justice is peculiarly essential in a limited constitution."
In the early years of the new government, many of Hamilton's forebodings about judicial weakness were realized. The Constitution had specifically called for a Supreme Court, but had left the formation of the lower courts to Congressional discretion. Congress dithered, and the Supreme Court justices had to endure the hardship of riding the circuit in the hinterlands for weeks or months each year, often spending more time on horseback than on the bench. This situation also placed them in the potentially awkward situation of having to listen to appeals of decisions by circuit courts on which they themselves had sat.
This disgraceful state was remedied at a most inauspicious moment: the interval between Thomas Jefferson's election as president and his taking office. The lame-duck Congress, still controlled by Hamilton's Federalist Party, passed the Judiciary Act of 1801, which created 16 circuit court judgeships. Jefferson's Republican Party blasted this as a last-minute, partisan maneuver, and with some justification: President John Adams, in his waning days in power, named a phalanx of Federalist judges to the posts. Adams had also appointed John Marshall, a distant relative and confirmed enemy of Jefferson's, as chief justice.
George Washington and Adams had been at least nominal Federalists, so President Jefferson and the new Republican-dominated Congress faced a judiciary under unanimous Federalist control. "The Federalists have retired into the judiciary as a stronghold," wrote an indignant Jefferson, "and from that battery all the works of republicanism are to be beaten down and erased."
Michelle Malkin has not one but two posts on the stunning silence emanating from the right wing of the "blogosphere" when it comes to the Larry Franklin-AIPAC spy caper. She writes:
"So far, the commentariat and blogosphere (both left and right sides) have been curiously quiet about the news that Pentagon official Larry Franklin was arrested for improperly passing classified information to AIPAC."
She then goes on to cite "colleagues I respect and admire" who are "downplaying" Franklin's treason. Why, even the New York Sun is "continuing to pooh-pooh" Franklin's alleged actions.
I have news for Malkin: the New York Sun is to Israel what the Daily Worker was to the old Soviet Union.
Is that really such a big secret?
If you follow the links in Malkin's post, you discover that those "colleagues" she "respects and admire" are none other than two of the biggest apologists for Israel on the American Right: David Frum and Joel Mowbray.
Malkin finds "the apologists and apathetic" to be "troubling," but she ought to wake up and smell the friggin' coffee -- the so-called "conservative" movement has been functioning as Israel's amen corner in the U.S. for quite some time now, and that she finds this troubling shows that she's just not paying attention.
When it comes to the Franklin affair, we hear not a peep out of the usually loquacious Instapundit; the cat seems to have got Roger L. Simon's tongue; someone pulled the plug on Powerline, David Horowitz & Co. have nothing to say, and even Charles Johnson, the failed musician who has now taken up hate-mongering over at "Little Green Footballs" -- usually barking at the moon at the least provocation -- is maintaining an embarrassed silence about a spy who sold out America for Israel.
What gets me is that these are the same people who have the nerve to bray about "patriotism" -- and habitually condemn others as less than loyal to this country. But only when it suits their political agenda.
SEE ARCHIVES AT LOWER RIGHT FOR MORE, 05/01 2005-05/07 2005
Thursday, May 05, 2005
$20 million here, $30 million there...pretty soon a lot of our money was just plain lost in Iraq. Or was it?Is there any kind of crime the rethuglicons AREN'T good at?
WASHINGTON - U.S. government mismanagement of assets in Iraq, from the lack of proper documentation on nearly $100 million in cash to millions of dollars worth of unaccounted-for equipment, are setting back efforts to fight corruption in the fledgling democracy, auditors and critics say.
Iraq became awash in billions of dollars in cash after the U.S. invasion two years ago, often with few or no controls over how that money was spent and accounted for. From the $8.8 billion provided to Iraq's interim government to millions provided to U.S. contractors, investigations have detailed a system ripe for abuse.
2 men who heard secrets fear charges
WASHINGTON - The arrest of Larry Franklin, a Pentagon analyst accused of illegally disclosing highly classified information, has stirred unusually anxious debate in the capital even though it has focused on a midlevel Pentagon employee.
The inquiry has cast a cloud over the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which employed the two men said to have received the classified information from Franklin.
The group, also known as AIPAC, has close ties to senior policy-makers in the Bush administration, among them Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.
More charges to come in Pentagon analyst affair?
Charges of treason touch most in King Goerge's junta.
Inquiry into leaked classified documents has 'cast a cloud' over pro-Israel lobby group.
Supporters of two recently fired senior staff members of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) say they are worried that the two men will be soon charged as part of the FBI's investigation into Pentagon analyst Larry Franklin.
The New York Times reports that the two men (Steven Rosen, formerly AIPAC's director of foreign policy issues, and Keith Weissman, formerly AIPAC's senior Middle East analyst) were not specifically named in the charges brought Wednesday against Mr. Franklin for illegally disclosing highly classified information. But they were later identified by sources as the other two people present at the meeting where Franklin allegedly disclosed the information.
The Times also reports that the charges against Franklin have "cast a cloud" over AIPAC, and are creating difficulties for some members, past and present, of the Bush administration.
But there are those who still insist defoliants used in Vietnam simply weren't toxic. Oh, and that there's no such thing as "Gulf War Syndrome" afflicting thousands of Gulf War I veterans exposed to...something.
This guy teaches at a "christian" liberal arts college, so he's the only one who can possibly know anything.
Agent Orange was no worse than Kool Aid.
Or something like that. Oh, yeah? Then why do Vietnam vets get annual Agent Orange tests to this day?
The radical origins of Mother’s Day: Julia Ward Howe's strident call for women to oppose the wars of men
"Two years ago in this space, I took the occasion of an upcoming Mother's Day weekend to reprint the 1870 call by American poet and women's leader Julia Ward Howe for the establishment of the holiday. The response was astonishing; the awareness, by even peace activists, was nearly nil that what is now widely viewed as a sentimental tribute to family was originally a call for women to wage a general strike to end war.
"This year -- as more and more mothers, in America as well as Iraq, mourn their fallen sons and daughters, lost to the insanity of organized violence -- Julia Ward Howe's call for women to not allow their men to constantly play at war is suddenly back in fashion. Around the country, her original Mother's Day Proclamation will be the basis for parades, remembrances, and other events that try to reclaim the holiday's original spirit in a year when the United States' (male-dominated) government talks seriously not of avoiding war, but staying the course on the multiple ones we're already fighting.
His legacy: "Support the troops, but not incompetent leaders--military or civilian--or stupid wars."
America will miss him.
Col. David Hackworth 1930 - 2005
The troops and the anti-war movement have lost a major supporter. Hack devoted most of his last few years hoping beyond hope that the soldiers not only cease to lose more of their own in the Iraq war (which he vigorously opposed), but that they stop getting screwed by our government on their return to civilian life.
The good colonel lost his fight against cancer yesterday. He'll be sorely missed. We proudly bring you his final column which posted Monday - and as always he went to bat for "the grunts."
Remember how the Swift Boat Assholes for Lies demonized John Kerry for doing exactly the same things? They'd have regreted saying their insults to Hack.
Hackworth served four tours of duty in Vietnam and was one of the first senior officers to speak out publicly against the Vietnam War. He was nearly court-martialed before he retired from the military in 1971 and gave up his medals in protest.
This also led to the growth of labor unions who gained enough bargaining power to increase America's standard of living. Rethuglicons hate unions because they believe there shouldn't be a middle class.
Feudal Europe never had a middle class, and they love the dream of turning America into feudal Europe. Except this time it'll be a pure theocracy. It really is a simple as that.
I can't help but wonder what King Goerge would call a miserable failure.
Attacks Kill 19 in Iraq as Surge of Violence Continues By REUTERS A suicide bomber struck an army recruiting center in Baghdad on Thursday, killing at least 11 people, and eight police officers were gunned down in a separate attack.
Pakistan Reports Arrest of a Senior Qaeda Leader
By SOMINI SENGUPTA President Bush called Abu Faraj al-Libbi's arrest a "critical victory in the war on terror," but counterterrorism experts were skeptical.
Wednesday, May 04, 2005
Freedom under attack!A compassionate cancervative patriot hacker apparently has tried, only partially successfully, to shut down this blog. While we're working to fix this partial problem and prevent future such attacks, see Profile, Links and Archives in an unusual place at bottom of page.
Farm out! Right arm! Powder to the people!
"Military action was now seen as inevitable (EIGHT MONTHS BEFORE D-DAY). Bush wanted to remove Saddam through military action justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But THE INTELLIGENCE AND FACTS WERE BEING FIXED AROUND THE POLICY."
Translation: Everybody in our gubmnt LIED.
More if your blood pressure is up to it.
If anyone denies that we are now living in a fascist police state, read this story to them.
More, if your blood pressure can take it.
Nixon's thugs thought they'd killed the anti-war movement. They were wrong about that as with most everything else.
New tactics in the war on science are pretty scary.
If...ahem..."christian" science (sic) "proves" the Earth is 6000 years old--thereby "proving" anyone who says otherwise is Satan's lover--what's next on their agenda of ignorance? Will the Earth be flat and at the center of the universe again in...ahem..."christian" textbooks? Anything is possible in the parallel universe of Cancervatron where 2+2=5 and the dinosaurs were in the Garden of Eden and on Noah's Ark.
"Dinosaurs of Eden"
"Dinosaurs in the Bible"
"Why, then, is it that the dinosaurs lived on earth but became suddenly extinct? God had actually placed dinosaurs in the Garden of Eden. They were mild, but were driven out to this earth because they fell into the trap of Lucifer during the period in which Adam could freely travel back and forth between this earth and the Garden of Eden."
This has to be true because the writer says God told all this to him personally. So why is known fatass Der Ruschkopf opposing Clinton's war on obesity?
Bubba's Anti-Fat Plan: Just Don't Swallow
I hope Der Ruschkopf said that to his new squeeze, CNN's Darin Kagan.
Florida Halts Fight to Bar Girl's Abortion
After first resisting a judge's order to allow a 13-year-old in state custody to get an abortion, Gov. Jeb Bush's administration said it would abandon the legal fight.
Lawmakers Block Women From Voting in Kuwait By HASSAN M. FATTAH
Conservative lawmakers effectively killed a measure that would have allowed women to vote in city council elections for the first time.
Andrews is one of the last of nine people to be sentenced in a scheme in which political insiders collected millions of dollars from corrupt investments that former state Treasurer Paul Silvester made with money from Connecticut's state employee pension fund.
See the video.
Tuesday, May 03, 2005
The U.S. Army missed its April recruiting goal by a whopping 42 percent and the Army Reserve fell short by 37 percent, officials said on Tuesday, showing the depth of the military's wartime recruiting woes.
Could this be one reason?
What does it take to make these people happy? After all, King Goerge "got" Saddam, even though he had no WMDs or connections to 9/11. How can anyone say that's not worth 1589 deaths and zillions of dollars that might have been spent on healthcare and schools?
Fifty-seven percent of those polled said they did not believe it was worth going to war, versus 41 percent who said it was, according to a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll of 1,006 adults.
That was a drop in support from February, when 48 percent said it was worth going to war and half said it was not.
It's also the highest percentage of respondents who have expressed those feelings and triple the percentage of Americans who said that it was not worth the cost shortly after the war began about two years ago.
Cancervative Critics of First Lady's Comedy Act Decry 'Hoax' Smear
A cancervative Christian (sic) organization that lashed out at the First Lady's weekend comedy routine is lashing out again—this time at critics who claim that the group's Bible-based panning of Mrs. Bush's jokes and one-liners was itself a joke. Observers say that the high-profile dispute over who can speak for cancervative Christians (sic) is just the latest in an increasingly heated battle between the Coalition for Traditional Values and its rival, the Traditional Values Coalition.
Talk of milking horses and desperate housewives rubs some values voters the wrong way.
The Supreme Court said Monday it will consider whether colleges and universities may bar military recruiters from their campuses without fear of losing federal funds.
Justices will review a lower court ruling in favor of 25 law schools that restricted recruiters in protest of the Pentagon's policy of excluding openly gay people from military service.
That ruling, by the Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, invalidated a 1994 federal law requiring law schools to give the military full access or else lose their funding, saying it infringed on law schools' free speech rights.
The Supreme Court will hear the case during its next term, which begins in October.
What a guy. Robertson, that is. God, well, He's not responsible for what people like Robertson do. Something about free will...
Hernandez has total disability from wounds sustained in the Vietnam War and has had to rely entirely on VA medical care for the past 30 years.
"At first I was maybe going three or four times a month, but now I am going maybe three or four times a year," he said.
He said the government owes a debt to veterans.
"When we went to war, we did not say we were going to get wounded or not get wounded, it just happens," l Hernandez said. "And there were rules and laws for the government to take care of veterans and gradually we have lost that."
He said the one of big issues he intends to present to the senators is the time and cost for veterans having to go to Salt Lake City for medical care.
"If you don't leave here at 3 a.m. or 4 a.m. to make a 10 a.m. appointment, you have to go over and spend the night, and that is costly for you," he said. "Sure, you get reimbursed for mileage in some cases, but it is not going to cover all your expenses, and the time you take to drive there - even if you went to a clinic here and had to wait two hours is a lot better than spending the whole day traveling."
Washington, DC, May. 2 (UPI) -- The most sobering aspect of the ongoing wave of terror in Iraq is not that things have changed, but that they haven't.
By Monday, at least 74 people had been killed in attacks all across the country since Friday and so far the numbers show no signs of abating.
The political and strategic motivation for the current wave of attacks appears clear: It is to discredit the Shiite-Kurdish coalition government that has finally been laboriously cobbled together after many weeks of wrangling. It would appear, therefore, that the insurgents had carefully husbanded their resources and prepared for this moment over the past three months since the Jan. 30 national elections.
Dr. First, Nurse DeLay, Jebya Bush MUST step in, with Green Berets and Navy SEALs, if necessary, to save this little girl from baby-eating activist judges. Never mind that judges didn't write this law; the Texas state legislature did. (What governor signed the bill into law?) Whatever, judges are still bad.
Hospital rules to unplug baby girl
Leukemia patient's parents scramble to find new care facility
In Houston's latest end-of-life controversy, Memorial Hermann Hospital has decided to remove from life support a 6-month-old girl whose leukemia has spread to her brain.
The parents of Knya Dismuke-Howard, who also has multiple-organ failure and a life-threatening antibiotic-resistant infection, vowed to fight the decision. Under Texas law, they have eight days remaining to find another facility to take her.
Maybe they'll name it the bushosaurus.
Monday, May 02, 2005
In the wide-ranging talk, Mr. Bush touched on such seemingly disparate topics as the excessive use of lighting in gay dance clubs, the misperception that the Toyota Prius is a 'gay' car, and the need to roll back regulations that are keeping the nuclear power industry tied up in knots.
Conservative Christians Not Laughing at First Lady's Comedy Act
First Lady Laura Bush may have stolen the show with her surprise comedy routine at this weekend's White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, but her jokes and one-liners have made her no new friends among conservative Christians. In an official statement, one 'pro-family' advocacy group warned that Mrs. Bush's jokes at the President's expense were in violation of the Biblical command that wives respect their husbands.
Some shocked by Mrs. Bush's reference to herself as a "desperate housewife"
WASHINGTON, DC—The First Lady may have stolen the show with her surprise comedy routine at the 91st White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, but not everyone appreciated her jokes and one-liners poking fun at President Bush. At least one organization of conservative Christians quickly lashed out at Mrs. Bush's performance, warning that her remarks at the President's expense were a public refutation of the Biblical command that wives should respect their husbands.
According to an official statement released over the weekend by the Coalition for Traditional Values, an organization that seeks a more flexible relationship between church and state, Mrs. Bush's jokes at her husband's expense amounted to a public emasculation of the President. Pastor Roy DeLong, the statement's author and chair of the group, warns that the First Lady's performance comes at a time when the Mr. Bush's "manliness is already under attack."
Laura: Meet Ephesians
"As a believer, President Bush is no doubt familiar with the passage from Ephesians that says 'Wives, submit yourselves unto your husbands, as unto the Lord,'" says Mr. DeLong. "That means that just as Christ is the head of the church, the husband is the head of the wife. That is not the
Mrs. Bush interrupted a speech being given by her husband at the annual dinner, remarking that "I have a few things I want to say for a change." She then proceeded to mock his performance, both public ("if you really want to end tyranny in the world, you're going to have to stay up later") and private, noting that by nine o'clock, Mr. Bush, whom she referred to as "Mr. Excitement," is typically sound asleep.
"One of the Proverbs says that 'a virtuous woman is a crown to her husband, but she that maketh him ashamed is as rottenness in his bones," notes Mr. DeLong. "I bet President Bush is feeling pretty rotten today."
Manliness in question
The rebuke to the First Lady's stand-up act comes on the heels of mounting concern about the President's image. Last week, Mr. Bush was seen holding hands with Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. Then the President raised eyebrows anew when he asked a crowd of supporters in Galveston, TX if they celebrated Splash Day, an annual gay pride event in that state, best known for attracting tens of thousands of buff men, wearing little more than suntan oil.
Even some members of Mr. Bush's famously loyal party looked askance at his recommendation during a speech on the nation's energy needs last week, when he encouraged Americans to consider driving hybrid vehicles, widely believed to be 'gay' cars.
While the Coalition for Traditional Values was the first conservative advocacy group to jump on the First Lady's comments, more criticism is expected. In her remarks, Mrs. Bush likened herself to a desperate housewife, a reference to the hit show on ABC, noting that she watches the show with Lynne Cheney, wife of the Vice President.
"Desperate Housewives" has come under heavy fire from pro-family groups, including the American Decency Association, which has called for a boycott of ABC for airing the "degraded" show. Last fall, Mrs. Cheney asked the federal government to step in to protect the nation's children from the "Desperate Housewives."
Do you think the First Lady's comedy act was offensive to Judeo-Christian values? Contact Russell Darby at firstname.lastname@example.org
Robertson says Muslims shouldn't be judges, only "christians" and Jews qualify. Ah, who needs that pesky Constitution, anyway? Or at least the parts that say who's a citizen and who can hold office.
(See other stories at this link, too.)
Does Dobson know he's supporting the network responsible for "Horny Housewives?"
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) -- The ''Supernanny'' finale will offer an extra dose of parenting advice in its commercials.
The conservative Christian ministry Focus on the Family plans to advertise its child-rearing Web site and toll-free number during the ABC reality show on Monday.
Republican Chairman Exerts Pressure on PBS, Alleging Biases
My favorite part:
"Without the knowledge of his board, the chairman, Kenneth Y. Tomlinson, contracted last year with an outside consultant to keep track of the guests' political leanings on one program, "Now With Bill Moyers."
Wait, so if a show has guests with non-fascist "leanings," the show is biased? Doesn't fairly unbalanced FAUXNEWS have "Hannity and Colmes" with a non-fascist (but admittedly wimpy) co-host Colmes and non-fascist guests for Hannity to yell at and lie about?
Do NOT tell me these people aren't fascists and aren't trying to turn my country into a feudal theocracy.
Gay men allege mistreatment in park arrests
The Atlanta Police Department is conducting an investigation into whether some of its officers acted improperly when they arrested a group of gay men walking through Piedmont Park around 2 a.m. on April 21, allegedly berating them as “faggots” and “cockroaches” while detaining them for nearly 12 hours.
The men were walking home after celebrating a birthday party at Blake's on the Park on 10th Street, and were unaware that the park closed at 11 p.m., according to Ray Gallimore, one of the five gay men arrested.
After initially being taken into custody by the police, the men were detained on a curb while the officers arrested seven other men in the park, Gallimore said.
“The officer showed us no respect and no dignity, but just kept saying things like they were here to clean the park up from faggots and cockroaches like us,” Gallimore said.
Federal judges are a more serious threat to America than Al Qaeda and the Sept. 11 terrorists, the Rev. (sic) Pat Robertson claimed yesterday. (Well, yeah, since 19 of the 20 "Sept. 11 terists" are dead, and the 20th is in prison. Duh, Pat.)
"Over 100 years, I think the gradual erosion of the consensus that's held our country together is probably more serious than a few bearded terrorists who fly into buildings," Robertson said on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."
"I think we have controlled Al Qaeda," the 700 Club host said, but warned of "erosion at home" and said judges were creating a "tyranny of oligarchy."
Confronted by Stephanopoulos on his claims that an out-of-control liberal judiciary is the worst threat America has faced in 400 years - worse than Nazi Germany, Japan and the Civil War - Robertson didn't back down.
"Yes, I really believe that," he said. "I think they are destroying the fabric that holds our nation together."
more on the impending Civil War II
WASHINGTON - Determined to pressure wavering Republicans, an independent group is launching a costly ad campaign designed to make sure
President Bush's conservative judicial nominees receive swift confirmation.
Over the next two weeks, Progress For America intends to spend $350,000 on "radio ads on Christian stations" and $1.5 million on television ads in six targeted states as well as nationally, according to a memo describing the plans.
The organization planned to unveil its effort Monday. The Associated Press obtained the details independently in advance.
"Senate Democrats have abused the rules and refused to even allow a vote," says the television ad. "So courtrooms sit empty, while thousands of Americans have their cases delayed."
The ad says it's the job of a senator to vote, adding: "Urge your senators to vote, up or down."
WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Bill First says he's "running out of options" in a fight with Democrats over King Goerge's judicial nominees.
In an interview with USA TODAY, the Tennessee Republican said he believes a showdown over King Goerge's federal appellate court nominees is "almost inevitable." He said he'll push for a vote on the judicial candidates before Memorial Day because the "extreme partisanship" in the Senate justifies the move.
"There are times in history where you have to change either the rules or the precedent based on external behavior," he said Friday.
Says he will nuke any country he can't conquer by other means.
U.S. may allow nuke strikes over WMD
Proposal would reverse 10-year policy
WASHINGTON (Kyodo) The U.S. military is considering allowing regional combatant commanders to request presidential approval for pre-emptive nuclear strikes against possible attacks with weapons of mass destruction on the United States or its allies, according to a draft nuclear operations paper.
The March 15 paper, drafted by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is titled "Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations," providing "guidelines for the joint employment of forces in nuclear operations . . . for the employment of U.S. nuclear forces, command and control relationships, and weapons effect considerations."
"There are numerous nonstate organizations (terrorist, criminal) and about 30 nations with WMD programs, including many regional states," the paper says in recommending that commanders in the Pacific and other theaters be given an option of pre-emptive strikes against "rogue" states and terrorists and "request presidential approval for use of nuclear weapons" under set conditions.
The paper identifies nuclear, biological and chemical weapons as requiring pre-emptive strikes to prevent their use. Allowing pre-emptive nuclear strikes against possible biological and chemical attacks would effectively contradict a "negative security assurance" policy declared 10 years ago by the Clinton administration during an international conference to review the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
Creating a treaty committing nuclear powers not to use nuclear weapons against countries without nuclear weapons remains one of the most contentious issues for the 35-year-old NPT regime.
A Pentagon official said the paper "is still a draft which has to be finalized" but indicated that it is aimed at guiding "cross-spectrum" combatant commanders how to jointly carry out operations based on the Nuclear Posture Review report adopted three years ago by the Bush administration.
Citing North Korea, Iran and some other countries as threats, the report sets out contingencies for which U.S. nuclear strikes must be prepared. It calls for developing earth-penetrating nuclear bombs to destroy hidden underground military facilities, including those for storing WMD and ballistic missiles.
"The nature (of the paper) is to explain not details but cross spectrum for how to conduct operations," the official said, noting that it "means for all services -- army, navy, air force and marine."
In 1991 after the end of the Cold War, the United States removed its ground-based nuclear weapons in Asia and Europe as well as strategic nuclear warheads on warships and submarines.
But the paper says the U.S. has the capability of reviving sea-based nuclear arms.
More, and if you weren't afraid of this insane criminal before, you'd better be now.
And then there are the 11,664 wounded...that we know about. These numbers are most probably much higher. Note that King Goerge only this weekend released pix of returning coffins, and then only after being sued. Aren't we all glad it's the fascists who love and support the troops who die for their lies and bullshit?
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Sunday, May 01, 2005
PHILADELPHIA - (KRT) - Religious conservatives, emboldened by President Bush's re-election and confident of their political clout, are not interested in merely overhauling the judiciary. Ideally, they are seeking a judiciary that would remove the wall of separation between church and state.
This ambition is stated clearly in numerous legal briefs currently on file at the U.S. Supreme Court in connection with a pending case; they seek removal of "a Berlin wall" that is "out of step with this nation's religious heritage." In fact, their leaders argue in interviews that the church-state barrier is a "myth" invented by the high court in 1947, thanks to a twisted interpretation of our founding documents.
Matthew Staver, a religious-right lawyer who recently argued a church-state case in front of the Supreme Court, said Friday, "The term `separation of church and state' is an easy hook. People hear it, they think of the First Amendment. It's like the line `Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee,' and you think of Muhammad Ali.
"But there's no "separation phrase in the First Amendment ... Interpreting it that way is laughable."
At the same time, he and others are anxious to assure skeptical Americans that their dream of a barrier-free America is benign. Staver, who has ties to the Rev. Jerry Falwell, said, "No way I want America to head toward a theocracy. I don't know anybody interested in that; it's not on our radar screen."
Yet their desire to breach the church-state wall - coupled with their incessant attacks on "liberal activist" judges and their success in prodding Republicans to intervene in the Terri Schiavo case - is sparking a backlash that threatens to sow new divisions. As Carlton E. Veazy, a Baptist leader in Washington, charged in a conference call the other day, "We are being led to this theocracy by the Christian right, who will not stop until they take over the government."
Critics think the church-state barrier is being breached already: A Justice Department guidebook on treating rape victims excised draft language that touted emergency contraception; pharmacists who refuse to fill birth-control prescriptions on moral grounds are lauded by Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., who wants to protect them by enacting a federal "conscience" law; and some Christian agencies may be using taxpayer money to proselytize and practice what critics charge is job discrimination.
One Christian program in northeastern Pennsylvania, financed by Bush's faith-based initiative, requires each worker to be "a believer in Christ and Christian life today" and has spent taxpayer money on construction of church property. The sponsoring Firm Foundation is now being sued in federal court by six local residents who say they don't want government to promote Christianity with their taxes. In response, Firm's lawyer, Steven Aden, says the group has been targeted "simply because it (works) from a faith-based perspective."
All told, there is a growing concern, even among some conservative analysts, that the religious right's Republican allies might pay a political price for their close collaboration. These analysts, for example, cite an April 14 remark by House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, who assailed the judiciary for trying "to impose a separation of church and state that's nowhere in the Constitution."
Glenn Simpson, a Tennessee law professor who runs the conservative Instapundit blog, wrote recently: "The Republicans' weakness is that people worry that they're the party of Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. They tried, successfully, to convince people otherwise in the last election, but they're now acting in ways that are giving those fears new life."
Those fears are reflected in the latest Gallup poll, which reports that, by a 2-to-1 ratio, Americans now say that the religious right has too much influence on the Bush administration. This poll, conducted immediately after the Schiavo case, contrasts sharply with surveys conducted between 2001 and 2003, when sentiment about the religious right's influence was evenly split.
So it's noteworthy that Bush, in his news conference Thursday night, took issue with religious-right orthodoxy. Christian leaders implied a week ago that those who seek to block Bush's court nominees are not "people of faith." But Bush said, "I don't ascribe a person's opposing my nominations to an issue of faith," and he added that he opposed any religious tests: "If you choose not to worship, you're equally as patriotic as somebody who does worship."
No Christian leaders took issue with Bush. But they do expect fealty from the GOP.
In the words of conservative Christian strategist Gary Bauer: "We are now at such a crucial time in the culture war. The Left is in full screaming mode, and they are counting on Republican knees to buckle, as they have so many times in the past." He said it's critical to overhaul a judiciary "that is replacing our Judeo-Christian heritage with moral relativism."
Mark Rozell, a political analyst at George Mason University who tracks the religious right, said Thursday: "They feel that the political circumstances won't be this good again - a strongly conservative Congress, a religiously conservative president. They've toiled for nearly 30 years, and the Republicans always said, `Wait your turn.' They believe the time is now."
And that means it's time to convince Americans that President Thomas Jefferson, in a famous 1802 letter, was not really trying to curb religion when he endorsed "building a wall of separation between church and state." The high court invoked the phrase when it formally erected the wall in 1947. The religious right sees this as regrettable; its members believe the ruling is marred by "numerous and serious historical errors."
In legal briefs filed in a pending Supreme Court case on the posting of the Ten Commandments, religious-right groups point out (accurately) that Jefferson's phrase appears nowhere in the Bill of Rights or the Constitution and that Jefferson wrote the phrase merely as a show of support for Connecticut's Baptists, who were upset that the state government was officially favoring the Congregationalists (independent scholars say the religious right also is correct about this).
But the briefs don't mention 1786, when young Jefferson was the author of a Virginia law separating church from state. This law is cited on his grave, at his request. A preamble excerpt: "To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagations of (religious) opinions which he disbelieves, is sinful and tyrannical." Another: "Our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry."
Barry Lynn, who directs the Washington-based Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, said, "The religious right would love the court to say, `We've been wrong since the '40s, so now you can do whatever you want.' Failing that, it'll push for `theocracy lite' - to make sure that you're a second-class citizen if you have different beliefs. But America's sensible center is saying, `Hold on; going to the edge of the cliff is not what we had in mind.'"
Bush's remarks Thursday night appear to acknowledge the danger of a backlash. But Staver believes, as a matter of principle, that it's worth pushing the high court to renounce the 1947 reasoning that erected the wall between church and state.
"There's an old saying," Staver said, "and it comes from the Book of Proverbs 18:17." That passage reads partly as follows: "He that is first in his own cause seemeth just." The point of this is that Staver and his allies acknowledge the secularists had the first word in the cause. But they intend to have the last word.
"Intel and facts were being fixed around the policy," none of which had dick to do with WMDs or 9/11.
...a few weeks after meeting King Goerge at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, Bitch Blair summoned his closest aides for what amounted to a council of war. The minute reveals the head of British intelligence reported that King Goerge had firmly made up his mind to invade Iraq and overthrow Saddam Hussein, adding that "THE INTELLIGENCE AND FACTS WERE BEING FIXED AROUND THE POLICY."
His career in Baghdad was brief. And it ended badly.
On a blistering July afternoon, three MP5 submachine guns were pointed at Robert Isakson. The men carrying the weapons wanted his money and his security pass.
As Isakson tells it, they also wanted his guns, leaving him unarmed in a mess of a country and banned from its safest haven.
"We were defenseless," says the former cop and FBI agent. He had come to Iraq to help rebuild the devastated country, accompanied by his 14-year-old son, Bobby. Now, after less than a month, they were being expelled at gunpoint.
The gunmen and Isakson all worked for Custer Battles LLC, a Rhode Island-based contracting firm now mired in lawsuits and a criminal investigation by the Pentagon. Isakson claims company employees ordered him out because he refused to help defraud the U.S. government.
It is one allegation on a long list.
I guess this makes me Chicken Big, the one who keeps saying, "The sky ISN'T falling," and is right. But like Cassandra, no one will listen.
There are no terists. If there were, they'd have done something else since 9/11. I've said it and said it, and no one wants to hear it. Okay, then, why did the terist threats stop the day after King Goerge stole his second election? There hasn't been one DeptHomeSec color-coded terist alert since the "election." Why not? Because there are no terists.
And all this "King Goerge scared 'em off," "Security is too good," and "They're fighting in Iraq" hogwash doesn't, well, wash. Think about it: How hard would it be for one terist to blow up a school? Or 48 terists to blow up a school in every state on the same day? Okay, then, why aren't they doing it?
Al Qaeda Focusing Attacks in Iraq and Europe, Officials Say
Reports of credible terrorist threats against the United States are at their lowest level since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, according to U.S. intelligence officials and federal and state law enforcement authorities.
The intelligence community's daily threat assessment, developed after the terrorist attacks to keep policymakers informed, currently lists, on average, 25 to 50 percent fewer threats against domestic targets than it typically did over the past two years, said one senior counterterrorism official.
A broad cross section of counterterrorism officials believes al Qaeda and like-minded groups, in part frustrated by increased U.S. security measures, are focusing instead on Americans deployed in Iraq, where the groups operate with relative impunity, and on Europe.
Democrats claim GOP skipped 432 felon voters