We are so “liberal”, they say… 30 June 2009Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, Afghanistan War, California / Pacific Coast, Culture of Death, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iraq War, San Francisco, WAR!.
Life at the top.
…the setting would not matter if the event were not so very bizarre. 999 Green Street, “The Summit“, is a tower condo building from the “mid-century” completed around ’64… Originally rental units..but condo-ized pretty quickly.
Former SecState George Schultz and Charlotte Maillard (formerly our City’s Chief of Protocol) live in the top two floors, originally two penthouses, each two stories, with commanding views from the 31st and 32nd floors… now combined to one large, 2 story unit. They entertained Blair there two years ago… people left the festivities at Bohemian Grove (it was July) to come to that party. Party decor included ice sculptures of London Bridge…. and other tourist spots.
My old joke about 999 Green was that it was “built for the Revolution”… the base is massively concrete. Withstand anything.
Anyway, grace a Willie Brown, here is quite the small party that took place there, a few days ago:
I went to an unbelievable dinner party at Charlotte and George Shultz’s penthouse Monday night for retired Army Gen. Eric Shinseki, the new secretary of veterans affairs.
The party was a Stanlee Gatti tour de force, complete with fatigue-wearing servers, camouflage table cloths, extras dressed up as snipers and a full Marine color guard and band.
It was like being in Afghanistan.
All this for about a dozen guests. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was there with his wife, Maria Shriver. Gavin Newsom was there with Jennifer, and boy is she showing.
I was seated next to Arnold, and he seemed to be holding up pretty well, considering the nightmare going on up in Sacramento.
The dessert: a chocolate replica of the Joint Chiefs of Staff seal, surrounded with vanilla ice cream and the Golden Gate Bridge in chocolate on each side.
Hard to beat the telling of it…
The interesting thing is that Willie is so far gone – and for so long, he completely misses the horror of the show. I never could stand him but 30 years ago he would have caught the ghastly drift.
Not now… he is the carcinogenic cherry on top, in a sense… an aged punk telling the spectacular story.
bliss 29 June 2009Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Sex / Reproductive Health.
Bogota, Colombia: A reveller dressed as a bride at a gay pride parade [William Fernando Martinez/AP]
Life v Gibbs.
This is pieced together from a couple of places, part of it is a reporter, Yunji de Nies, at Political Punch, the Tapper ABC site… the second set of questioning, I don’t know which reporter it is… Pam of Pam’s House Blend had both sections of the Q & A at her site with no link or attribution, at all. heh.
The bolding is from Pam’s site – and this questioning is the unknown reporter:
Q Robert, today the President is going to celebrate Gay Pride at the White House for the first time. Even so, the gay community is somewhat divided over whether or not the President has done enough, the pace of change is enough. What does the President intend to say today, and can you talk a little bit about his thinking about how much he has to mollify a community that’s been very supportive during the campaign?
MR. GIBBS: I appreciate the opportunity to comment on mollifying a community, but that’s not the way the President looks at important issues. I think if you go back and look at the campaign — either his campaign for the Senate or his campaign for the presidency — he takes stands that he believes are consistent with his values.
We didn’t play a lot of interest group-based politics in the presidential race, I think that was denoted by the fact that we didn’t get a lot of endorsements in the presidential race.
The President makes those decisions, again, based on his values. I won’t get ahead of what he’s going to say later today, but he will, I think, address a number of issues and reaffirm the commitments that he’s made.
Q Following on that, the President has talked about repealing “don’t ask, don’t tell,” and also the Defense of Marriage Act. So I’m wondering if you can tell me what specific steps has he taken to do this? What is his timeline for doing it? And also –
MR. GIBBS: I think we got a fairly similar question a minute ago, but I’ll try to –
Q – there’s legislation apparently moving through House to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell,” I think it’s H.R. 1283, and he hasn’t endorsed it. Why not?
MR. GIBBS: I can certainly talk to legislative affairs about what that piece of legislation would do. As I said earlier, the President has been involved in, personally, meetings on this topic with stakeholders, including those at the Pentagon.
Q What about members of Congress?
MR. GIBBS: I don’t know if he’s met specifically with members of Congress on that. I know that — I can try to get a list, I know that staff has worked here on the issue. It’s a commitment that he intends to keep.
Q Can you talk a little bit more about the meetings that he’s had, what –
MR. GIBBS: No.
Q – and how recent has he been in these meetings?
MR. GIBBS: Since January 20.
I read somewhere or other that as the attendees arrived for the afternoon reception at the WH, ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” was playing. hmmm.
From the Wapo on today’s reception …
His comments were received enthusiastically by some attendees. “This is so incredibly historic and symbolic,” Mitchell Gold, a gay-rights activist from North Carolina, said after leaving the White House. “I don’t think for a minute that we can forget that under the Bush administration we didn’t see that.”
Whew! Poor [shorter] Mitchell: “Obama is Better than Bush” OIBTB. Ok! Don’t be bothering to be an activist for any rights I might need…
And, from de Nies second question to the WH press flack:
de Nies : Can I ask one more question quickly?
de Nies : On sort of a D.C. issue — and that is: What hasn’t the president changed his license plate on the presidential limousine? Is he planning to change them for the “taxation without representation” plates?
GIBBS: I think rather than change the logo around the license plate, the president is committed instead to changing the status of the District of Columbia.
de Nies : But that is a symbol, though, that a lot of people look at as…
GIBBS: Right. I guess I would ask you to ask people in Washington whether they’d like to have that status changed, or that symbolism screwed onto the back of a limousine?
Stuff ‘em with symbolism. And the historicity — of it all.
Of course the license plate frame signalling DC’s ongoing colonial status was a cowardly bullshitty thing Clinton did, just in the last two weeks of his final term. Big Guy. So courageous.
Out of the promoted news… 28 June 2009Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, Divertissements, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iraq War, South America.
A Palestinian demonstrator in a wheelchair reacts as he get caught in tear gas fired by Israeli troops, during a demonstration against Israel’s separation barrier in the West Bank village of Bilin, near Ramallah [AP]
… away from the hyped news…
Elsewhere the beat goes on… Our much vaunted “pull back from the cities” in Iraq, due for Tuesday, is variously described in ways that, for headline readers or itinerant news consumers, could be misconstrued to be the announcement of a full withdrawal. Hardly. And, as scripted, the “violence rises”. 250 dead in recent days from car bombs…
First military coup, they tell us, in S America (Honduras) since the end of the Cold War. We are said not to be involved. That would be a first!
In other, different news… it sounds like, might be, could be, that the former pol who keeps on giving to the tabloids, made a sex tape with the inamorata. And, what is more, an aggrieved party has the tape.
One would almost think the loons (which would be the whole crew) in this deal planned it this way. Or, the hand of Gawd intervened to assist the mere mortals… It is all too perfect!
Oh yes… Michael Jackson ”memorials”, in the press, continue. I can’t wait for the will to be read, made public — and for the REAL battles to begin.
oh I dunno… 26 June 2009Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, Iran, Riyadh.
Iran crackdown: Riot police have become a constant presence on the streets of the Iranian capital [Ali Nazanin/AFP/Getty Images]
I can only make it thru about a quarter of what is online, sorting thru this and that… but I think it is time, reportedly with 17 dead among the protesters and 8 of the basij troops (not that we know)… it is time for Mousavi to show his face. And, maybe, his wife as well….
What I find is shifting reports, varying from day to day, one or the other of them is said to be under a form of arrest, and surely much is opaque… but he issues statements on his website… the latest float is that his wife is missing, maybe arrested.
[W]riting on his website, Mr Mousavi said the result of the polls was a “big fraud” and that the security forces had “attacked protesters inhumanely, killed, injured or arrested them”. He continued: “I am willing to show how election criminals have stood by those behind the recent riots and shed peoples’ blood. I will not back down even for a second, even for personal threats or interests.”
There had been reports earlier in the week that Mr Mousavi’s wife, Zahra Rahnavard, had been arrested after posting a message on her husband’s website in which she said the protests must continue despite the authorities imposing regulations that she likened to martial law. There has been no further news about her whereabouts.
The authorities meanwhile continued their policy of cracking down on protest, arresting 70 university professors after they had met Mr Mousavi to discuss setting up a more liberal form of government. Later at least half of them were released, but some remain in custody. Other academics, artists, writers, poets and journalists have all been particularly targeted for harassment and detention. snip
I say, show up. It seems clear the protests, from whatever wellspring they arise, are beyond an election, beyond a vote count, beyond a man. Or his wife. Even as much is, again and still, opaque.
But, show up. I did find his statement days ago about ritual bathing and preparation for martyrdom to be spoon feeding the troops…. Western media surely carried that message aloft, as though it were the bloodied shirt.
It is other blood in the streets.
“These reasons explain why over recent weeks while the Iran elections were happening there has been virtually no coverage in most media of demonstrations numbering in the tens of thousands in Georgia or Peru. It has even been reported in Peru that dozens of persons have been killed during the protests, or “clashes” as they’ve also been labeled (since more than a dozen police have also been killed), more than the reported number killed in Iran.” (thanks Matthew)
Posted by As’ad at 8:09 AM
Just being a thief in the night here with Angry Arab posts...
“Kristen Breitweiser, an advocate for Sept. 11 families, whose husband was killed in the World Trade Center, said in an interview that during a White House meeting in February between President Obama and victims’ families, the president told her that he was willing to make the pages public. But she said she had not heard from the White House since then.” (thanks Olivia)
Posted by As’ad at 8:04 AM
Playing out the long wars… 24 June 2009Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, Afghanistan War, AFRICOM, Culture of Death, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Iraq War, Israel/AIPAC, San Francisco, WAR!.
Nablus, West Bank: ultra-orthodox Jewish men pray at Joseph’s Tomb [Sebastian Scheiner/AP]
Just one representative article… I mean why load up? We are swimming in it… the war debris, the porn, the horror… so I pop this up as I listen to a Charlie Rose show, selling ALL the wars, Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran… (well they did leave out Africom!)
Kilcullen (who, it appears, has greatly modified his earlier strong position against drones), General Barno (big bud of McChrystal) and Ricks.. who basically loves the wars, loves his prizes for his books and shoulder-to-shoulder-with-the-war “reporting”… the longer the wars run, the more money and prizes. I don’t see that we will ever get free… a perfect storm of bleeding the nation dry for the foreign wars. But! grow your own vegetables and save water! (Nothing wrong with either, either!)
Compost or be fined (new, unenforceable rule in San Francisco for private residences).
Meanwhile the tanks roll out, the bombs will fall, the cradle will rock, the world over.
[N]ow again we have the leadership of both political parties with much of the journalistic establishment in tow promoting what will likely be exposed in the near term as another slough of lies, this time about Iran. At the center of them is this: Iran has a nuclear weapons program threatening Israel with nuclear holocaust.
That’s a staggering allegation, and designed to be so. It’s the son of the earlier allegation born of the White House Iraq Group propaganda team: Let’s not let the “smoking gun” be a mushroom cloud over New York City. Sheer fear-mongering.
Iraq didn’t threaten New York. The U.S. threatened, invaded and occupied Iraq, slaughtering at least tens of thousands in the process. And Iran does not threaten anyone with a nuclear weapon. It should be repeated again and again: the National Intelligence Estimate concerning the question of Iran’s nuclear program, representing the consensus of the 16 different U.S. intelligence agencies in 2007 concluded in “high confidence” that Iran does not even have an active nuclear weapons program. (The report appeared after nearly a year’s delay due to apparent obstruction by Dick Cheney’s office, the neocon headquarters).
Unfortunately, regime change in Iran is the single most urgent, outstanding item on the neocon agenda left unfulfilled after eight years of Bush-era empowerment. Its proponents refuse to allow a mere change of administrations to deflect them from their goal. Hence somehow a neocon has insinuated himself into the center of Iran policy, first as a Hillary Clinton advisor and “diplomat,” and now as an advisor to the president working for the National Security Agency.
Dennis Ross is an NIE-denier. With no real expertise on Iran or Persian linguistic competence, and no understanding of nuclear science—but lots of experience in U.S.-Israeli relations and settler advocacy garnering him the nickname “Israel’s lawyer”—Ross was principal author of an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal eight months after the NIE appeared. snip
We seem utterly obsessed with massive, ritual bloodletting. Death.
Ross’s change of jobs was announced in the midst of the street demonstrations following the contested election results in Iran last week. He will now literally move into the White House and provide day to day counsel to Obama on how to “deal” with a leadership he wants to topple.
I suppose we can pray that Obama is a stalwart fellow. They call him nuanced. They hold it out like it fucking matters. So…this is good right? I mean, intrinsically.. this is good… yes?
Yes, prayer is good. Pray. And pray again… be nuanced in your prayers… be so resolute in your prayers that you do not notice the bombs falling, the starvation, the displacement, the refugees, the death and dismemberment.
Yes, do pray.
[S]ensationalistically entitled “Everybody Needs to Worry about Iran,” it alluded blithely, offering no evidence, to the Iranian regime’s drive to become “a nuclear state” and announced a drive to “mobilize the power of a united American public in opposition.”
Co-signators included Richard Holbrooke, currently Obama’s special envoy to “Af-Pak;” former CIA director and Project for a New American Century operative James R. Woolsey and Mark D. Wallace, a former UN ambassador who heads up with Woolsey and others something called “United Against a Nuclear Iran.” (All were major proponents of the Iraq War.) …
Such nuanced change I am blinded by the brilliance.
Gaza City: Mahmoud Al Segali, 9, works as a mechanic assistant at the Arayshi garage [Ali Ali/EPA]
UPDATE, 2:51 am on the Pacific Ocean
oh… this just fits in too well here…
The domestic long wars…
[O]nce Weill got the radical deregulation law he wanted, he issued a statement giving credit:
“In particular, we congratulate President Clinton, Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, NEC [National Economic Council] Chairman Gene Sperling, Under Secretary of the Treasury Gary Gensler, Assistant Treasury Secretaries Linda Robertson and Greg Baer.”
Summers is now Obama’s top economic adviser, Sperling has been appointed legal counselor at Treasury, and Gensler, a former partner in Goldman Sachs, is head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which he once attempted to prevent from regulating derivatives when it was run by Brooksley Born. Robertson worked for Summers in pushing through the Commodity Futures Modernization Act, which freed the derivatives market from adult supervision and contained the “Enron Loophole,” permitting that company to go wild. Robertson then became the top Washington lobbyist for Enron and was recently appointed senior adviser to Fed Chair Ben S. Bernanke. Baer went to work as a corporate counsel for Bank of America, which announced his appointment with a press release crediting him with having “coordinated Treasury policy” during the Clinton years in getting Glass-Steagall repealed. As a result of deregulation, B of A too spiraled out of control and ended up as a beneficiary of the Treasury’s welfare program.
Why was I so naive as to have expected this Democratic president to not do the bidding of the banks when the last president from that party joined the Republicans in giving the moguls everything they wanted? Please, Obama, prove me wrong.
I’d suggest Bob let his fingers do the walking, look up the financial services, banks and Wall St contributions to OBAMA. I am sure he knows all of that perfectly well. He should stop bleating and get used to using Obama’s name. He’s in charge, remember?
Everything now is geared to raking in a lot more $$$$ than in the 2007 – 2008 cycle… There is talk already that the administration wants a “Reagan-like” blow out in 2012.
Let’s not beat around the Bush. Or around the Obama.
The left, so called, plays this every election. To me it proves, whether voluntary or not, we have a completely closed political system.
They bitch and moan and then, when given the chance, they sell the next Democratic White or Black or Brown [false] hope.. it never ceases.
Little left to say… 22 June 2009Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.
Cartoon from the UK Independent, June 5 2009
In stark legal turnaround, Obama now resembles Bush
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is morphing into George W. Bush, as administration attorneys repeatedly adopt the executive-authority and national-security rationales that their Republican predecessors preferred.
In courtroom battles and freedom-of-information fights from Washington, D.C., to California, Obama’s legal arguments repeatedly mirror Bush’s: White House turf is to be protected, secrets must be retained and dire warnings are wielded as weapons.
“It’s putting up a veritable wall around the White House, and it’s so at odds with Obama’s campaign commitment to more open government,” said Anne Weismann, chief counsel for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a legal watchdog group.
Certainly, some differences exist. [so few! What are we down to? Skin color? -- Mcat]
The Obama administration, for instance, has released documents on global warming from the Council on Environmental Quality that the Bush administration sought to suppress. Some questions, such as access to White House visitor logs, remain a work in progress.
On policies that are at the heart of presidential power and prerogatives, however, this administration’s legal arguments have blended into the other. The persistence can reflect everything from institutional momentum and a quest for continuity to the clout of career employees.
“There is no question that there are (durable) cultures and mindsets in agencies,” Weismann acknowledged.
A courtroom clash Thursday illustrated how Obama has come to emulate Bush.
Weismann’s organization sued last year to obtain the notes from an interview that the FBI conducted with then-Vice President Dick Cheney. The interview was part of an investigation into leaks concerning undercover CIA officer Valerie Plame, and the Bush administration vigorously fought the release of the notes.
“The records contain descriptions of confidential deliberations among top White House officials which are protected by the deliberative process and presidential communications privileges,” Bush’s Justice Department argued in an Oct. 10, 2008, legal brief.
Obama’s Justice Department held the same line Thursday.
“The new leadership of the department supports those arguments,” Justice Department attorney Jeffrey Smith told U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan during the oral argument.
“The Department of Justice is an ongoing entity, and it is not normal for us to update cases simply because we have a new attorney general.”
Perspectives, of course, often change once candidates assume responsibility upon taking office. As a candidate, for instance, Obama opposed the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman.
As president, however, he’s following Bush’s lead in defending in court the federal marriage law, which a California same-sex couple is challenging.
The law “reflects a cautiously limited response to society’s still-evolving understanding of the institution of marriage,” Assistant Attorney General Tony West declared in a legal filing June 11.
Legally speaking, every administration inherits lawsuits filed against its predecessor. The Solicitor General’s Office, which represents the government in appeals, traditionally tries to hold a steady course. Personnel, too, stick around. John Brennan, the CIA director’s chief of staff during the Bush administration, is now closely advising Obama as a senior National Security Council staffer. ["stick around"? oh for fuck's sake! Because OBAMA wanted him.. in fact, for a spot that required a congressional vote, which looked chancey, so he got dropped into the NSA... -Mcat]
Whatever the reasons, policy persists.
The Bush White House sought to keep e-mails secret. The Obama White House has followed suit.
The Bush White House sought to keep visitor logs secret. The Obama White House, so far, takes the same view.
Petaluma, Calif., resident Carolyn Jewel and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a legal activist group, sued the Bush administration over warrantless wiretaps. The Bush administration said that the lawsuit endangered national security. The Obama administration now agrees.
“The disclosure of the information implicated by this case, which concerns how the United States seeks to detect and prevent terrorist attacks, would cause exceptionally grave harm to national security,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Michael F. Hertz declared in a brief April 3.
Similarly, the Bush administration objected to an American Civil Liberties Union request for access to documents that include photographs that reportedly show the abuse of foreign prisoners held by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Obama administration declared in April that it would release the photographs.
Three weeks later, Obama reversed course and declared that “releasing them, I believe, would be to further inflame anti-American opinion and to put our troops in greater danger.” The administration’s attorneys followed up with a legal brief, augmented by a 24-page declaration that CIA Director Leon Panetta filed June 9.
“Information containing details of the (interrogation techniques) being applied would provide ready-made ammunition for al Qaida propaganda,” Panetta declared. “The resultant damage to the national security would likely be exceptionally grave.”
In an interview, ACLU attorney Amrit Singh said that “the trend, as it is now, is disappointing” as Obama follows the Bush lead.
The Obama administration now will appeal to the Supreme Court in an effort to keep the photos and related information secret.
On the opposite coast, a similar drama is playing out in a clash over so-called “torture flights.”
An ACLU lawsuit, initially filed in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Calif., contends that the Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen DataPlan knowingly supported a CIA operation that flew terrorism suspects to brutal overseas prisons. The Bush administration invoked the “state secrets” privilege in an effort to stop the suit.
“Further litigation of this case would pose an unacceptable risk of disclosure of information that the nation’s security requires not be disclosed,” the Bush administration declared in a legal filing on Oct. 18, 2007.
The Obama administration now says the same, after a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled April 21 that the case could proceed.
“Permitting this suit to proceed would pose an unacceptable risk to national security,” the Obama administration declared in a legal filing June 12.
For both arguments, the two administrations relied on the attestations of the same man: former Bush CIA Director Michael Hayden.
What can one say… and that is the short version, McClatchy hit the highest peaks.
Glenn Greenwald has a piece up on the DNA case the SCOTUS decided on Thursday.
Popcorn and hankies. It is to weep over.. but………
Numerous liberal commentators are, rightfully, infuriated by the decision, but have been notably incomplete in their critiques.
There’s one important fact missing from all of that analysis: namely, this was yet another case where the Obama DOJ sided with the Bush administration and advocated the position that the conservative justices adopted. The Obama DOJ aggressively argued before the Court that convicted criminals have no constitutional right to access evidence for DNA analysis. …
I am guessing W and GHW sent Ob a high five. One of the guys..And maybe a pair of gold spurs for his very own. Years ago Reagan sent Saddam a pair of solid gold spurs, I used to laugh, speculating that the personal note said some thing like:
From a guy to a guy.
Ob probably would drool for a note like that. From a bona fide, big time white conservative and global killer. He’d probably like to dig up Reagan, kiss his orange cheeks and ask for some more spurs.
More from Greenwald:
[I]ndeed, the Obama DOJ rejected explicit requests from defendants rights advocates to repudiate the Bush position. Instead, the Obama DOJ announced that Deputy Solicitor General Neal Katyal would make his debut appearance before the Supreme Court in that capacity advocating the Bush position (and that’s what then happened):
The solicitor general’s office has turned down a request by the Innocence Project to disavow a Bush Administration stance on prisoners’ access to DNA evidence in post-conviction proceedings. As a result, on March 2, Neal Katyal will make his debut as deputy solicitor general by arguing before the Supreme Court in support of the state of Alaska’s view that prisoners have no constitutional right to obtain DNA evidence that might help them prove their innocence — even if the prisoners pay for the DNA testing themselves. . . .
The bolding there is Greenwald’s… Within the text of his article he makes clear, the hue and cry over the ruling, all but one reference in the NYT leaves out the role of the current administration, and along the way he names Yglesias, Millhiser at Think Progress (a CAP project) and Scott Lemieux in particular… well, they all helped in their small way to put Ob in… why cry now… too late.
In my opinion it was not honest work, covering for him now surely is not.. but, done is done.
They will help again as well: Good Democrats. Bless their tiny and ever tinier liberal hearts.
In all of the commentary condemning this decision, the only acknowledgment I saw of the role played by the Obama administration was in yesterday’s New York Times Editorial:
We are also puzzled and disturbed by the Obama administration’s decision to side with Alaska in this case — continuing the Bush administration’s opposition to recognizing a right to access physical evidence for post-conviction DNA testing.
Thursday’s ruling will inevitably allow some innocent people to languish in prison without having the chance to definitively prove their innocence and with the state never being completely certain of their guilt.
Even the Wapo, in an editorial that showed Osborne, the person at issue here, to be a very unsympathetic character, states the SCOTUS ruling was wrong, based on due process.
The thread to the Greenwald post is very interesting.. one comment that seeks to show a different spin on the case before the court, here [I just don't buy that Ob and congress are working like little civil rights beavers to expand use of DNA. Share that Easter Bunny elsewhere, LOL].
And, another, very troubling, that indicates the amicus brief had widespread support from Democrats across the nation. He names two, one of which is Jerry Brown, our AG. IMO Jerry’s been off the tracks for some years now.
Bolding is mine…
That amicus curiae brief
Glenn — it is vitally important that you comment on the amicus curiae brief in this case, in which attorneys general and various other figures from across the country, from Jerry Brown of California to Tom Miller of Iowa, supported this decision.
A real question needs to be asked, thusly — why such broad support from the Democratic Party for such a massive punt on civil rights by the Supreme Court? I would be particularly interested to hear views on two hypotheses of mine. The first is that the generally bureaucratic, civil service, non-customer-oriented, non-citizen-oriented, cover-your-ass culture prevalent in much of the Democratic Party is rearing its head here as prosecutors don’t want to be placed on the hook for mistakes or misconduct by new technology. The second, more ominous reading, is that rather like New Labour in England, the US Democrats all the way from the hard left to the center are in general supporting authoritarianism as a central tool in the war on crime.– decisivemoment
Con law lecturer, elevated beyond the chalk board. And grading papers… A Chicago fixer. A tool.
We are so blessed.
I cannot resist, June 3, 2008 in Minneapolis, the night he won the nomination… mops at the ready for the drool, clear the storm drains:
The journey will be difficult. The road will be long. I face this challenge with profound humility, and knowledge of my own limitations. But I also face it with limitless faith in the capacity of the American people. Because if we are willing to work for it, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on earth. This was the moment—this was the time—when we came together to remake this great nation so that it may always reflect our very best selves and our highest ideals. Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.
AND in among the slobber that night was this line, too:
I’ve sat across the table from law enforcement and civil rights advocates to reform a criminal justice system that sent thirteen innocent people to death row.
… a rising ocean of drool, followed by fists.
Sabbath 21 June 2009Posted by marisacat in Divertissements.
Employees of a marine park perform an underwater mermaid dance routine inside a giant aquarium in Manila, Philippines on June 5, 2009. (JAY DIRECTO/AFP/Getty Images)
hey… beats incense and candles – and homilies from on high…
[thanks to Madman who sent round a wonderful boston.com Big Picture link... enjoy!]
Mosul, Iraq: Iraqi soldiers, seen through a mirror, patrolling with their US counterparts from the 3rd Battalion 8th Cavalry Division, search a home in the Al-Naherwa area of the city [Ali Al-saadi/AFP/Getty Images]
It will never end…not at this rate.
by Jason Ditz, June 18, 2009
Ambassador Christopher Hill was the latest US official to declare that the nation intends to comply with the requirement of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with Iraq that all troops would be out of Iraq’s cities by June 30. This would include the cities of Baghdad and Mosul.
But according to US army commanders in the Mosul area, there is enormous confusion about exactly what this requirement actually means, and have cautioned that the Iraqi government has ‘created a false impression among Iraqi citizens that American troops will no longer be seen on Mosul’s streets when, in fact, they will.’ [what a shock! --- Mcat]
In reality the troops will be in bases along the outskirts of the city, and they are urging Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to give them exact guidelines regarding what they can and cannot do. “All of the battalion guys have concerns,” one commander noted, “all we have at the moment is the security agreement, and all that says is ‘no unilateral patrols’.” snip
They’ll figure something out…
so much noooz 17 June 2009Posted by marisacat in California / Pacific Coast, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.
Srinagar, India: A Kashmiri Muslim woman raises her hands at the display of a relic believed to be a hair from the beard of the Prophet Muhammad [Dar Yasin/AP]
I can’t keep up. As for Cali… they’ve picked a day in July when we will be quite visibly pregnant with bankruptcy. Our “due date”… I am sure we will give it a suitably glossy name.
Thanks to all who got us over the hump to where we are today!
What can you do but laugh.
Alloh-O akbar 15 June 2009Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Political Blogs.
Mir Hossein Mousavi suporters protest in Iran. Supporters of leading opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi protest the election results in Azadi square in Tehran, Iran. (AP)
Taking this post in toto from Angry Arab. Life is so complex, esp when listening to events carried out in a different language. So many ”helpful” Farsi translators about… (no embedded link, as it is his own ramble, I did insert breaks)
Have not had time for posting especially about Iran: I just woke up at 2:30AM Oslo time. Not fun if you value sleep as I do.
Typically, I support neither side in the Iranian situation: but I support those Iranians who are struggling against both sides. I have worried before about the impact of Ahmadinajad’s stupid rhetoric on the Iranian public attitudes toward the Palestinian question. I worried that in the long run it will move the public away from solidarity with the Palestinians. Of course, there is so much hypocrisy in the Western coverage and official reactions to the developments.
Most glaring for me was the statement by the secretary-general of the UN who insisted on the respect of the will of the Iranian people. Would that US designate utter such words, say, about Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Morocco and other dictatorships that are approved by the US? The role of Faqih in Iran undermines any claim of democray in that country: but I am in no way sympathetic to Moussavi. He is a man who suddenly discovered the virtues of democray. When he was prime minister back in the 1980s, he presided over a regime far more oppressive than Ahmadinajad’s.
And why has no Western media really commented on his rhetoric during his own campaign: the man kept saying that he wants a “return” to the teachings of Khomeini. I in no way support a man who wants a “return” to the teachings of Khomeini. But Western media are always quick to pick villains and heroes: especially when one side is identified against Israel. I don’t know whether the elections in Iran was stolen or not, and I would not be surprised if such a regime did that. But why do Western media express outrage over a stolen electin in Iran but they don’t even feign outrage over lack of elections in Saudi Arabia? So it is not about democracy or respecting the will of the people any way.
Posted by As’ad at 6:15 PM
And so we mush onward…