This is a running commentary on contemporary social, political and religious issues. From the Introduction of James Comey's book "A Higher Loyalty -- Truth, Lies and Leadership" "Man's capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man's inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary" Reinhold Niebuhr
What God has given us with the landmark decision today overturning the repressive DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) and the negating of California Prop 8 can be taken away as the overturning yesterday by the US Supreme Court of the legendary Civil Rights Act of 1965 shows. We thought that momentous 1965 Civil Rights Act was carved in stone until we elected Republican presidents who put right wing extremists on the Court. Their goal was to neuter that law.
Legislation and SCOTUS decisions are only as good as the ability for progressives to win the day in elections federally and on the state and gubernatorial level. As our politics has shaken out, all those things that a civilized society thinks humane and reflected in law are being promulgated and defended solely by Democrats through the Democratic Party.
Republicans have become the party of reactionary regression to a 19th century world. It is the Party of interposition and nullification of the Civil War era. The Republican Party, far from the Party of Lincoln, is sown from the Confederacy of the Old South sprinkled with a few token blacks as icing on its poisonous cake. The Tea Party Republican wing has been co-opted by big money contributions which the US Supreme Court’s rancid decision of Citizen's United made possible. It has made that party dedicated to the 1% richest of the nation subliminally under the nose of the duped and in the disguise of populist politics.
Moreover, the Republican Party is the party, as the Republican 2012 "debates" showed, that does not care if the poor, or anyone for that matter, live or die. Republicans simply do not care about human rights but they do care about shoving their religious belief system into the uteri of women and they do care about government not caring about what nefarious tactics Wall Street uses to make trillions. While Democrats are not perfect Republicans are catastrophic to one's health and the whole nation's economic security. I urge you, therefore, to elect solely Democrats to positions of power throughout the land.
Republicans try as they might could not stop minorities in 2012 from voting even with Republicans’ election evil attempts to suppress the minority vote. They MUST NOT be allowed to stop us EVER! WE WILL SIGN EVERY DEMOCRAT UP TO VOTE, OBTAIN VOTER ID'S IF NECESSARY AND GET OUT THE VOTE EVEN WHEN THEY CHANGE VOTING TIMES OR PLACES. WE WILL BEAT THEM AT THEIR OWN ODIOUS GAME BY COMPLYING WITH THEIR SUBVERSIVE LAWS IF NECESSARY UNTIL SUCH TIME AS THIS COUNTRY RETURNS TO A STATE OF FAIRNESS IT ONCE WAS AND WHAT DR. KING ENVISIONED WHEN LYNDON JOHNSON SIGNED THE 1965 CIVIL RIGHTS ACT RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM!
I was not thinking correctly so late in the evening and a fellow Markey supporter informed me of my mistake so I will pass on my corrected response. Send it to anyone you choose.
ON TO 2014 TO TAKE BACK THE HOUSE (and increase Dem's majority in the Senate.) The Voting Rights Act debacle of the Supreme Court yesterday has utterly infuriated me so that my brain filled with anger is not synaptically firing correctly. Of course he was right the 2014takeover of the House is what is needed so that the president can FINALLY get a Congress with whom he can work. So many elections and so little time.
I also had forgotten that soon-to-be Senator Markey has to run again in two years and Senator elect Markey's Fifth Congressional House seat must be filled with a Democrat. His victory last night was for the special election to fill John Kerry's senate seat leaving the Massachusetts's 5th congressional House seat open. A Democrat WILL fill it but we must make it happen. Also, changing each state's Republican and gubernatorial control so that the gerrymandering fix of districts in favor of Republicans stops.
We must NOT NOT NOT NOT become election weary. These are our lives about which we are talking, it is about Republicons returning us to the 1880's and it is about relegating persons of color to the back of the bus yet again. Once we gain majorities in the House keeping or increasing Democratic control of the Senate than a fix of this DASTARDLY Shelby SCOTUS decision could attempt to be rectified helped too by ONE more progressive member of the Supreme Court to ultimately do it.
Until then our legal community and ALL progressive groups must be dedicated to trying BY ANY LEGAL MEANS necessary to subvert yet another SCOTUS rancid decision. This decision goes into a place of hell reserved for Dred Scott and Citizen's United, two of the absolute WORST decisions rendered by "conservatives" in the most activist right wing radical high Court EVER!
This is the Republicon's attempt to yet again steal elections by putting up road blocks to keep minorities and people of color from voting and gaining power. We must NOT let this happen. We must fight this state by state, policy by policy with as much Dept. of Justice help now as we can get to crush this perversion of our democracy. Democrats and everyone who is for fairness must act. We must mobilize as we did in the 1960's. We need people power from all sectors of our electorate to subvert this Supreme Court monstrosity and all the malodorous decisions that have been enacted by this Court crippling those of us who are not among the privileged 1%!
Thank you to my political ally for the necessary and important clarification!
Read the decision for yourself linked here and above. We as progressives KNOW what we MUST do and that is REGISTER, REGISTER, REGISTER Democrats minority and non minority alike. There WILL be a voter registration push like never before. We will cross every T and dot every i and make SURE registration is CORRECT and play the rancid game that the five so called "conservatives" on the Court have played. This will mean NOTHING when all is said and done because Progressive Democrats and Independents WILL conform to the letter of the law! WE WILL NOT TURN BACK TO 1865!! EVER. Make NOTE Republicrats ruination of our democracy. Make note.
The talking head pundits like Joe Scarborough and Chuck Todd are saying the Mass. turnout for this important Senate election will be VERY LOW perhaps the lowest! PROVE THEM WRONG. SAY NO TO THAT AND GET OUT THE VOTE AND GET OUT TO VOTE FOR ED MARKEY -- THE ONLY CHOICE!! When you vote obstructionist Republicans in to office do not scream and cry if government is stagnant.
This president WOULD do it all IF he were not so railroaded and blocked by the rotten 60 vote obstructionist Republican know nothings in the House. The Senate is important. Democrats MUST keep it. SEND A MESSAGE that elections matter!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get out THE vote and get out TO vote tomorrow June 25, for Ed Markey.
Our Senate race is TWO -- let me say that number again -- TWO days away. IF you want a Congress that is about our 99% majority, IF you want your Social Security and Medicare to remain in tact, if you want the sick, the elderly, the disabled and ALL people who need it to have access to healthcare, IF you want this so obvious-it-bites-you-in-the nose climate catastrophes that have occurred and are occurring as we speak because of man's contribution to global warming to be addressed, IF you truly want jobs, IF you want repair of our dangerous and sagging infrastructure, IF you want a woman to have her rights preserved and NOT be determined by government invasion, IF you believe in equal rights for ALL people irrespective or race or assigned-by-nature sexuality, IF you believe in compassion and care for those Americans who, through no fault of their own, need help, IF you want help for our injured returning vets THEN
You MUST MUST MUST show up at the polls and get EVERYONE you know to vote for Ed Markey on June 25. If you have to give them a ride do so, if you have to pay for a plane ticket please try to do so, if they need transportation of any kind help to arrange it, heck, IF you have to carry them to the polls to VOTE FOR THE DEMOCRAT ED MARKEY DO SO.
Make NO mistake this is a VERY important election. Do not let Republicans steal this as they have stolen others -- GOTV -- GET OUT TO VOTE AND GET OUT THE VOTE FOR ED MARKEY.
THERE IS NO KIDDING AROUND EDWARD MARKEY IS THE ONLY CHOICE FOR THE US SENATE SEAT NEXT TO THE GREAT ELIZABETH WARREN. NEVER FORGET ALWAYS REMEMBER WHAT THE OBSTRUCTIONIST REPUBLICAN KNOW NOTHINGS HAVE DONE TO YOU AND TO OUR COUNTRY. VOTE THEEXPERIENCED ED MARKEY ON JUNE 25. YOU, YOUR CHILDREN AND YOUR CHILDREN'S CHILDREN WILL BE GLAD YOU DID!!!
The MSNBC article posted here or below is entitled "Pakistan aid workers pay the ultimate price for the killing of Osama bin Laden." It is chilling as it describes efforts by Pakistani officials to carve out areas which will NOT allow health workers to administer the polio vaccine. The politics of this are stunning and one can read the extremist rationales behind it in the article.
Those most impacted and to whom my heart goes out are the children who know no politics. Those nations that have been polio free often do not realize the life sentence that will be handed out when a nation state allows and even demands children go unvaccinated. The innocent are the true tragedy of the Middle East mayhem. The innocent get slaughtered. War does that doncha know.
As one who knows polio first hand I know it is a disease monstrosity. Polio as a child ruins or severely impacts the entirety of one's life. It is brutal in its scope. Most of those unvaccinated will suffer the often secondary severe orthopedic wrath of its impact. The ramifications of viral infection are, to say the least, devastating and if one acquires bulbar polio which affects nerves cells that control breathing and the brain stem one will most likely die as there probably are no sophisticated iron lungs or complex technological equipment in underdeveloped nations to keep the afflicted alive.
It is a brutal price the innocent have to pay for adult folly and it will mean decades of unnecessary suffering for them. The disease requires the necessity of a variety orthopedic equipment and even surgeries (if they can get surgery) to be administered when young so that the paralyzed limbs and young bone structures, attendant maladies of the nerve-cell-attacking virus, grow correctly. Some, if they acquire the virus in third world countries, will have their legs amputated or be relegated to moving wooden sleds close to the ground. It will be and in some areas is a pitiful sight. Even with the best medical advancement the deformities can be and often are gruesome. And it is expensive. There is no cure and the paralysis that ensues cannot be medically reversed. There is only life saving vaccination prevention. Whatever nation's objections to anything any other nation may have done, I implore that they NOT take it out on the children with lack of immunization against polio.
Polio is a killer of the functioning of bodies and it is a killer of the spirit as it wreaks its psychological havoc too, even more so in nations poisoned by superstition and the dogmas of irrational belief.
It is a virus not to be ignored and it is an equal opportunity employer. In 1921 it affected US President Roosevelt as it affected the poorest of the poor. Polio is an equal opportunity employer as it does NOT discriminate and it can strike anyone who is unvaccinated in a town, a city or a village near you.
The NYT statistician (do not fear) genius Nate Silver's book: "The Signal and the Noise. Why So Many Predictions Fail — but Some Don't" is a fabulous book and an easy read to boot! I cannot put it down. Here or below.
For all of you on my personal list who are in Mass and inclined to vote for the Democrat Ed Markey for US Senate on June 25th or if you are undecided you may be interested in the following email I received from Norma Shulman (a worker extraordinaire) of Markey headquarters with videos of President Clinton's appearance for Markey with Elizabeth Warren and others accompanying them in Worcester last week.
Also enclosed is a video by the comic Jimmy Tingle -- I entitle it Canvassing can be Fun!
Please if you are not interested in any of the itemized things below and if you do nothing else but VOTE casting one for Ed Markey on June 25 we are grateful for your efforts which will, I think you will agree, be worth it.
A Republican, should for most of you, be out of the question. Remember Republicans are NOT about most of you. Do not be duped. Republicans are about the top 1% of wealth.
Vote for the advocate for the 99%, ED MARKEY, ON JUNE 25, 2013 to sit in the US Senate seat next to the historic and great Elizabeth Warren!
From: Norma Shulman
Sent: Tue, Jun 18, 2013 9:17 am
Subject: Final debate tonight and videos to inspire you!
Election Day is Tuesday, June 25th - just SEVEN days away!
Please remember to vote and remind your family and friends.
If you've thought about getting involved but you're not sure you're ready to come canvassing with us, check out this video from comedian Jimmy Tingle who shows how canvassing can be easy & FUN!
If you could not get to Worcester for the rally with President Clinton, we brought the rally to you. See Mayor Joe Petty, Congressman Jim McGovern, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and President Bill Clinton supporting Ed Markey!
The last debate is tonight at 7 PM on channels 5 and 7.
Remember, next Tuesday, June 25th! Just a few days to make a difference. Even an hour from each person reading this email would make a huge contribution to the results.
Let Wade know by email or phone (see the office contact information below my signature):
What day(s) you are available (June 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, and/or Election Day June 25).
Indicate if you are interesting in canvassing, hanging door signs reminding people to vote, poll checking (observing), phoning, or other ways to help. Note that we can train you to make calls from home.
Do you have a cell phone that can access the internet?
Do you have a laptop?
We’re Ready for the Special Senate Election! Are you?
I am thrilled about the polling news I see (Globe article linked below) BUT we must NEVER forget that that will mean nothing without significant GOTV (Get Out the Vote) efforts. We must get all those who will vote for the Democrat Ed Markey on June 25, 2013 out to vote; we must get Independents who will vote for Ed Markey out to vote; and most of all we must get the still undecided out to vote for Ed Markey on June 25.
We who know and love Ed Markey understand his positions are INFINITELY superior to the Republican candidate. We who know and love him understand the following:
1. Ed Markey takes on the NRA; 2. Ed Markey Protects Social Security and Medicare; 3. Ed Markey is pro choice; 4. Ed Markey has and will continue to act for the environment and against climate change.
We MUST translate what we know to those who may know Ed Markey less well. I believe we WILL do that but we can only do that if we GOTV! Spread the message to every village and farm that Ed Markey is for the 99% and that his Republican opponent will vote as he will be instructed to vote by the Republican Party of obstructionism and that is for the 1% wealthiest American. The Republican Party is NOT about most of you.
Brilliant pieces from the creator of The Wire and Tom Friedman NYT journalist with whom I often do not agree. I diverge from my usual agreement with my left of center compatriots with respect to NSA "spying" and they explain better than I exactly why. Something REALLY did happen on 9/11 and those buildings REALLY did come crashing down!!
Part political thriller and part detective story, the documentary Dirty Warsfollows investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill, author of the international bestseller Blackwater, on a gripping journey into the heart of America's covert wars, from Afghanistan to Yemen, Somalia and beyond. What begins as a report into a U.S. night raid gone terribly wrong in a remote corner of Afghanistan quickly turns into a global investigation of the secretive and powerful Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC). As Scahill digs deeper into the activities of JSOC, he is pulled into a world of covert operations unknown to the public. In military jargon, JSOC teams "find, fix, and finish" their targets, who are selected through a secret process. No target is off limits for the "kill list," including U.S. citizens. Drawn into the stories and lives of the people he meets along the way, Scahill is forced to confront the painful consequences of a war spinning out of control, as well as his own role as a journalist. Dirty Wars takes viewers to remote corners of the globe to see first-hand wars fought in their name, leaving haunting questions about freedom and democracy, war and justice. Original score by the Kronos Quartet. (Partially subtitled) Official Web Site
I remember who I was at 29 years old. I was always interested in left of center politics. I had dreams of going to Washington. I had an ego the size of Mt. Rushmore and I thought god, fate or something was on my side. I thought I could charm the pants off of the world's most egregious tyrant. In short I wanted notoriety and certainly power as I felt the country of my birth would surely give me that. Many years later I got few of those things I thought I would.
I can only imagine the size of ego and the idealism this man NSA leaker Ed Snowden possesses. Idealism is commendable. I had lots of it then. The years as they passed took their toll and I began to see as George Orwell did, when tyrannies are overthrown they often do not bring a better outcome as they are replaced by other tyrannies. We need to look at the Middle East to prove that is so true. Why? Because man is animal with a variety of perceptions. We do not all think alike. This nation is perhaps one of the very very few whose revolution brought something better -- not for all but for many and it brought a ray of hope that things COULD in fact get better if one tried.
As an adult I put away childish things and I saw this country for what it is HUGE and with a variety of competing interests. The fact that it runs as well as it does is the eighth wonder of the world. Mr. Snowden will have his 15 minutes of fame, make people THINK he is an idealist, either a goat or a hero and he will bask for a short time in the glory of the ends justifying the means politics. But as the play Chicago tells us, fame is a fleeting thing though glorious while one has it. It will NOT be there for long. Sooner or later this massive country's people will become board with this story, drop Snowden and go on to the next big or not so big scandal or thing.
Mr. Snowden, I fear you will lose in the end. In the end you are sought after prey by the lion of the jungle. You may THINK you will evade its grasp. You won't at least not for long and then you will be abandoned by the people, by the media and in permanent exile from the comfort this nation once provided you.
You can be sure, Mr. Snowden and Glenn Greenwald too if our enemies succeed they will accord you NONE of the freedoms you enjoy now, had or would have had had you not abandon your national security oath and the nation of your birth. Life will go on and it will go on very well, indeed, without you!
Robert Reich, the former Clinton Labor Secretary, has a huge brain and a big heart to match. I urge you to read his opinion below and see why the Democratic retaking of the House, crushing the Tea Bag movement and keeping the Senate Democrat is imperative to take our country back:
TheQuiet Closing of Washington
By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog
09 June 13
onservative Republicans in our nation's capital have managed to accomplish something they only dreamed of when Tea Partiers streamed into Congress at the start of 2011: They've basically shut Congress down. Their refusal to compromise is working just as they hoped: No jobs agenda. No budget. No grand bargain on the deficit. No background checks on guns. Nothing on climate change. No tax reform. No hike in the minimum wage. Nothing so far on immigration reform.
It's as if an entire branch of the federal government - the branch that's supposed to deal directly with the nation's problems, not just execute the law or interpret the law but make the law - has gone out of business, leaving behind only a so-called "sequester" that's cutting deeper and deeper into education, infrastructure, programs for the nation's poor, and national defense.
The window of opportunity for the President to get anything done is closing rapidly. Even in less partisan times, new initiatives rarely occur after the first year of a second term, when a president inexorably slides toward lame duck status.
But the nation's work doesn't stop even if Washington does. By default, more and more of it is shifting to the states, which are far less gridlocked than Washington. Last November's elections resulted in one-party control of both the legislatures and governor's offices in all but 13 states - the most single-party dominance in decades.
This means many blue states are moving further left, while red states are heading rightward. In effect, America is splitting apart without going through all the trouble of a civil war.
Minnesota's Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party, for example, now controls both legislative chambers and the governor's office for the first time in more than two decades. The legislative session that ended a few weeks ago resulted in a hike in the top income tax rate to 9.85%, an increased cigarette tax, and the elimination of several corporate tax loopholes. The added revenues will be used to expand early-childhood education, freeze tuitions at state universities, fund jobs and economic development, and reduce the state budget deficit. Along the way, Minnesota also legalized same-sex marriage and expanded the power of trade unions to organize.
California and Maryland passed similar tax hikes on top earners last year. The governor of Colorado has just signed legislation boosting taxes by $925 million for early-childhood education and K-12 (the tax hike will go into effect only if residents agree, in a vote is likely in November).
On the other hand, the biggest controversy in Kansas is between Governor Sam Brownback, who wants to shift taxes away from the wealthy and onto the middle class and poor by repealing the state's income tax and substituting an increase in the sales tax, and Kansas legislators who want to cut the sales tax as well, thereby reducing the state's already paltry spending for basic services. Kansas recently cut its budget for higher education by almost 5 percent.
Other rightward-moving states are heading in the same direction. North Carolina millionaires are on the verge of saving $12,500 a year, on average, from a pending income-tax cut even as sales taxes are raised on the electricity and services that lower-income depend residents depend on. Missouri's transportation budget is half what it was five years ago, but lawmakers refuse to raise taxes to pay for improvements.
The states are splitting as dramatically on social issues. Gay marriages are now recognized in twelve states and the District of Columbia. Colorado and Washington state permit the sale of marijuana, even for non-medical uses. California is expanding a pilot program to allow nurse practitioners to perform abortions.
Meanwhile, other states are enacting laws restricting access to abortions so tightly as to arguably violate the Supreme Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade. In Alabama, the mandated waiting period for an abortion is longer than it is for buying a gun.
Speaking of which, gun laws are moving in opposite directions as well. Connecticut, California, and New York are making it harder to buy guns. Yet if you want to use a gun to kill someone who's, say, spray-painting a highway underpass at night, you might want to go to Texas, where it's legal to shoot someone who's committing a "public nuisance" under the cover of dark. Or you might want to live in Kansas, which recently enacted a law allowing anyone to carry a concealed firearm onto a college campus.
The states are diverging sharply on almost every issue you can imagine. If you're an undocumented young person, you're eligible for in-state tuition at public universities in fourteen states (including Texas). But you might want to avoid driving in Arizona, where state police are allowed to investigate the immigration status of anyone they suspect is here illegally.
And if you're poor and lack health insurance you might want to avoid a state like Wisconsin that's refusing to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, even though the federal government will be picking up almost the entire tab.
Federalism is as old as the Republic, but not since the real Civil War have we witnessed such a clear divide between the states on central issues affecting Americans.
Some might say this is a good thing. It allows more of us to live under governments and laws we approve of. And it permits experimentation: Better to learn that a policy doesn't work at the state level, where it's affected only a fraction of the population, than after it's harmed the entire nation. As the jurist Louis Brandies once said, our states are "laboratories of democracy."
But the trend raises three troubling issues.
First, it leads to a race to bottom. Over time, middle-class citizens of states with more generous safety nets and higher taxes on the wealthy will become disproportionately burdened as the wealthy move out and the poor move in, forcing such states to reverse course. If the idea of "one nation" means anything, it stands for us widely sharing the burdens and responsibilities of citizenship.
Second, it doesn't take account of spillovers - positive as well as negative. Semi-automatic pistols purchased without background checks in one state can easily find their way easily to another state where gun purchases are restricted. By the same token, a young person who receives an excellent public education courtesy of the citizens of one states is likely to move to another state where job opportunity are better. We are interdependent. No single state can easily contain or limit the benefits or problems it creates for other states.
Finally, it can reduce the power of minorities. For more than a century "states rights" has been a euphemism for the efforts of some whites to repress or deny the votes of black Americans. Now that minorities are gaining substantial political strength nationally, devolution of government to the states could play into the hands of modern-day white supremacists.
A great nation requires a great, or at least functional, national government. The Tea Partiers and other government-haters who have caused Washington to all but close because they refuse to compromise are threatening all that we aspire to be together.
I have blogged many times in support of the president and Democrats. Naturally civil liberties is something that surely is a part of left of center DNA politics. The fact that the president is getting criticism from the left because of his national security policies makes me nervous.
The right of course, at least their leadership, is not unmindful of using this to gain political points as if their side was not so EGREGIOUSLY guilty of obliterating civil libertarian rights in modern times, trying to use voter suppression tactics, gerrymandering districts and other voting nefarious activity to limit minority rights. The GOP has been the WORST of the worst notorious for secrecy and worse for implementing illegal policies.
Someone like Republican right winger extreme Rand Paul will milk this seemingly bipartisan agreement for all its worth so the unthinking and know nothing voter will in ignorance turn to God forbid Republicans to save them from the national security state. They will if they gain power do anything but. Rand Paul and those like him are opportunists and have literally NOTHING in common with our Democratic base and platform.
Rand Paul's party brings with it rancid economic policy eliminating any kind of market regulation or fairness in business practices relegating us to the precivil rights era of the early 1960's. With them comes the threat of obliterating the health care law, obliterating Soc Sec. and turning it into a voucher program, gutting Medicare and Medicaid.
Republicans are representative of DANGEROUS politics. For those of you on the left or on the center who supported the president but now are a bit quizzical about the president's NSA policy I ask you to give him the benefit of the doubt and come out STRONG very STRONG for the Democratic Party not only on June 25 when Massachusetts WILL elect Ed Markey to the Senate but in 2014 when we MUST MUST MUST take back the House and we MUST work hard to overturn Republican state legislatures and governorships across the nation. This party has shown its colors. Republicans are against action to reverse climate change, against a woman's right to choose, against Planned Parenthood and birth control, against gay people having the same rights as everyone else and WILL if they attain power reverse Roe v. Wade relegating women to lethal back ally procedures. If all of this were not bad enough they are against SENSIBLE gun control and against solid immigration reform without brutal conditions. They would if they could regress our nation to a 19th century world.
NSA issues are NOT new. You must only imagine how egregious it would have been had a Romney won and how dastardly it will be if we the Democratic base become lukewarm and inactive. I can assure you Republicans will not be inactive. We must still, no matter what, come out to work and vote for Democrats. The stakes including and beyond national security are Everest high if we do not!!
Why Ed Markey MUST be elected on June 25. 2013 and Democrats everywhere should be supported in 2014. Our lives, the lives of the next generation and the generation after that depend upon it!
Those who debate the minutiae of US National Security spying policy seem to in their luxury life not have a significant understanding of what the threats to this nation are or really remember the details of the 9/11 attack. They do not know how serious this is. They are willing to compromise the security of this nation for due process Constitutional clauses. No one has thought the pillars of our republic more important than I. BUT while they are important they are NOT everything in comparison to the threat. One difference between our Founding Fathers in 1776 and the modern era is found in one word: nukes.
There are those who do not have a clue about what that means. One should Youtube something about the effects of those incomprehensible weapons in the hands of those who want to destroy this country before one tries to weaken the US government compromising this nation and all of our lives within it!
A final thought: Those journalists like Glenn Greenwald, excellent writer and expert civil libertarian that he is, freely spout whatever they want, whenever they want to whomever they want and are still writing their columns. They are NOT sitting in jail with the key thrown away. They are gaining fame and notoriety while making a big capitalist buck off it. I rest my case.
When I see news hysteria now about NSA government metadata collection and the seeming overreach of government power I shrug my shoulders because I have heard it before. It is surely bigger than my capacity to influence policy. Moreover, it is the government's Constitutional obligation not only to follow Constitutional due process clauses but also to protect its public and the nation from a life-ending attack. It would be negligence and even treason if it did not.
Once 9/11 happened, no matter the rationale behind the perpetrators' actions our nation’s past deeds have been done and cannot be undone. Think about it. Think about the massive twin towers in NYC on that sun-drenched day being attacked, falling and spewing their structural poisons. Think on the first responders who rushed to the scene walking up the towers’ stairs to their deaths in a vain attempt to save others who were walking down to try to escape their own. Think on many who incredulously and out of desperation jumped from the Towers’ Everest heights to the concrete below, bodies smashed to smithereens some of whose bones are buried forever into the stone age of history at the site of new concrete. Last but, of course, not least think about the 3000 dead from the greatest attack on the homeland in history.
It is easy to forget as time passes but we must revisit in our mind's eye the physical reality of what occurred when those towers fell on that blue-sky day. Think on the huge plumes of toxic dust inhaled by so many and think on those today who are still suffering trauma both physical and psychic, lung destruction, cancer or other related diseases and think of those who died since the attack and who will die because of it in present and future time.
The 9/11 attack was an action like no other. It changed our culture like fossil fuels are changing the climate, altering weather and the earth in our lifetime and, perhaps, even forever. In view of that, I do see why there is massive overreach by the national security state. At the same time, there is a collection of data which is seemingly irrelevant to the prosecution of the amorphous war on terror. We ought to take a breath from this latest national news media hysteria, not overreact but demand our government look at what is necessary and what is not to secure our person and our nation from a fatal onslaught.
There can be no doubt there are those who would, if they could, destroy us, our nation and our culture. If one is dead no number of civil liberties and Fourth Amendment search and seizure Constitutional protections will matter.
Our president is a constitutional law scholar. I believe the president through legal mandate and by any means legally necessary is implementing extensive national security measures, warrantless wiretaps and other seemingly extra-constitutional methods not because he loves to bathe in power but because he is trying to provide every safeguard available to ensure a horrific attack like the 9/11 attack or worse never happens again.
Whatever the IRS may or may NOT be guilty of, Republican utter waste of taxpayers dollars is legion. I did not hear Republicans complaining when private contractors decimated Iraq and Afghanistan with shoddy work resulting in the deaths of our soldiers and billion buck crony no bid contracts. This is the pot calling the kettle. Not only that I seem to remember another agency doing the exact same thing I think it was the Interior Department taking its employees to big bashes and parties funny thing I found a site at Think Progress:
Bush’s Department of Interior: Sex, Drugs, and Oil?
-Earl Davaney, Interior Department Inspector
From lobbyists buying
million-dollar homes with DOI officials to a high level administrator being
sentenced to prison time amid the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal, the agency
that is tasked with protecting America’s natural resources was wrought with
flagrant ethical failures during the Bush administration. Here’s the background
on the biggest scandals and the key figures in the DOI under the Bush
The American Dream has been hijacked. The essence of what brought immigrants to our shores, the essence of that which much of the world desired to emulate, and the essence of Lady Liberty's message written by Emma Lazarus: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” is no more. Our American Dream has been taken over by the 1% at the top of the economic ladder because they have bought your nation by not only owning many huge corporations and Wall Street but by owning the halls Congress as well. The game is rigged and it is rigged against you. As the late great and prescient comic George Carlin said in his American Dream Youtube -- "It's a club and you ain't in it!"
Instead of writing more I will post two important links. The first is an article written by the wonderful writer and journalist Jane Mayer entitled "A Word from Our Sponsor" in the May 27, 2013 edition of the New Yorker. It is about the Koch's influence of that former bastion of thought, educational television, thereby skewing the content of its programming and their quest to stop documentaries like Carl Deal and Tia Lessen’s “Citizen Koch” and Gibney’s “Park Avenue: Money, Power and the American Dream,” which places them and the 1% under the microscope. The slide under the microscope is not a pretty one!
The second is the controversial Alex Gibney documentary "Park Avenue: Money Power and the American Dream" which was shown by a number of PBS stations. Ultimately Koch pulled out of sponsoring WNET because it did not like the anti-Koch trajectory of its independent films content. It is well known that David Koch and his brother, oil and energy multi-billionaires are trying to usurp it all. Their money is buying the American Dream through development of numerous "conservative" think tanks, through the buying up of educational television, the purchasing of universities, and most importantly contributing anonymously huge amounts of money to buy Congress. Recently it is no secret that the Koch Brothers are even attempting to buy up many prestigious formerly liberal news media like the Boston Globe. This will, of course, crush the people's voice and insert their version of Ayn Randian propaganda into our brains. I urge you to let these entities know this is unacceptable and that Congress persons who accept or lie about dirty money entering their coffers to do the bidding of the 1% will suffer at the polls.
Read Mayer's article and watch the WNET video and see for yourself what has happened to this nation we once thought a paradise that catapulted us from poverty to prosperity and not the reverse. Now prosperity is in a few -- very few -- mega wealthy hands unreachable by the vast majority of the country who has suffered greatly at the hands of unregulated and corrupt Wall Street greed.
Moreover, do NOT buy what Koch Brothers have to sell and pass this around to anyone whom you think should read and hear it. It is our only chance to defeat these Randian right wing extremist forces of inhumane evil that have imprisoned our nation and to truly take our country back! The links are below. I urge you to look at them both!
After the Moore, Oklahoma F 5 tornado yet again yesterday that area saw multiples of Moore. It is hard to believe there are still science denying know nothings who put our nation and the world at risk. The abundance of catastrophic weather events of massive continuing tornadic activity, floods, devastating coastal changing hurricanes, blizzards in nearly any season, not to be eclipsed by massive fires and droughts proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that climate change as witnessed by these extreme weather events is truth. It is truth and as 98% of scientists know it is directly influenced by a century of fossil fuel pollutants sold to an unknowing public by corporatists without conscience.
The Koch Brothers, oil, coal and other corporate giants like the tobacco charlatans before them, will keep the doubt of it flowing through the veins of the electorate like the filthy fossil fuels they produce. They have hijacked an entire Republican Party through their deep pocket payoffs to Washington keeping it stagnant, divided and on the side of the fossil fuel industry. It is shameful and does NOT have to be so.
Speak up, write or send smoke signals to Washington and everyone you know that our nation must change before it is too late if it is not too late already. While you are at it crush those unconscionable right wing morally corrupt extremists and vote them permanently out of office.
Nothing less than your life, your children’s lives, their children’s lives indeed the functioning of an entire nation and ultimately the life of the planet itself is at stake. If you do not believe me hang on for awhile you will experience the results of it yourself.
I paste the NBC story link above the headline for your reading pleasure!