Precinct 333

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Killers for Kerry

On September 9, an unidentified man interrupted a question and answer session following a screening of the film Stolen Honor, which honors POWs and notes John Kerry's role in making their imprisonment longer and subject to more pressure to betray their country like he did. He disputed the film and praised Senator Kerry

The man has now been identified.

He is Kerry campaign and Democratic National Committee staffer Wayne F. Smith, the Kerry campaign’s veterans outreach operation.

Old media accounts and "Stolen Valor," a 1998 book by Vietnam veteran B.G. Burkett, show that Smith, a Vietnam War medic, was sentenced to hard labor for being AWOL before his 1972 drug-related manslaughter conviction. Smith later obtained a college education and became executive director of the Justice Project, which attempts to use DNA evidence to exonerate unjustly convicted felons.

I think that says it all about Kerry's attitude towards veterans -- his outreach director is an AWOL convicted druggie and killer.

And yet there are still people out there who think Kerry has the judgement necessary to be president.


United States Race-Baiting Commission

Shriveled up old race ho' Mary Frances Berry has again shown why her agency should be zeroed-out in the next budget cycle. In a move intentionally timed to come before the election, the US Civil Rights Commission will release a rreport on President Bush's record on civil rights. Past practice has been to hold these reports until after the election, as was done with the 2000 report on the Clinton record on civil rights.

But that isn't all. The report was completed by Berry and her staff without seeking or permitting any input by Republican members of the commission, and was presented to them in its final form on Wednesday. Agencies cited in the report have not been permitted to review, correct, or rebut report assertions, despite the fact that "affected agency review" is standard practice in Washington to ensure the accuracy of reports before they are released.

Among the points of indictment by the biased report are the No Child Left Behind Act's testing and accountability standards being applied to poor and minority children, support for school vouchers, and the reduction of rental subsidies (never mind the fact that minority home ownership is at its highest level in history). But this is the most shocking.
And, oh yes, the President is accused of being soft on civil rights for nominating a Hispanic (Miguel Estrada) and an African-American (Janice Rogers Brown) to the appellate bench. Never mind their ethnicity, these conservatives have a judicial philosophy that the report says will lead to the "eventual weakening of civil rights laws." So Mr. Bush is insensitive to civil rights if he doesn't appoint minorities but he's also insensitive if he does. That's about all you need to know about the objectivity of this political exercise.

Like I said, zero-out the agency in the next budget. It no longer serves a useful purpose.


Oil-For-Palaces Enablers

Guess which three nations kept the UN's Oil-for-Food program from being effectively monitored. France, Russia, and China.
In a briefing paper given yesterday to members of the House subcommittee investigating the program, the investigators said their review of the minutes of a United Nations Security Council subcommittee meeting showed that the three nations "continually refused to support the U.S. and U.K. efforts to maintain the integrity" of the program.

What's more, the UN wasn't even willing to really look too closely at what happened to the money from oil sales permitted under the program.
The paper also accuses the United Nations office charged with overseeing the program of having "pressed" contractors not to rigorously inspect Iraqi oil being sold and the foreign goods being bought. The program office, headed by Benan Sevan, who is also under investigation by a committee appointed by the United Nations, turned a blind eye to corruption charges, the paper says, because it apparently saw oil-for-food "strictly as a humanitarian program."

The program operated in such a way as to make it a perfect breeding ground for corruption -- and the extent of the problem is not fully known due to US stonewalling of investigations.
The paper concludes that the program's greatest weakness was a lack of transparency. "Most transactions involving the program were done behind closed doors or sometimes illicitly," it states. The lists of oil purchasers and aid providers were not known. The United Nations internal audits continue to be withheld from United Nations members and the public.

Maybe rather than having US military and foreign policy "pass the global test" like John Kerry wants, the United States should insist that all UN actions pass the United States' test! Yet one more reason to support the president's reelection.


Libertarians Seek To Stop Non-Inclusive Debate

Libertarian presidential candidate Michael Badnarik is on the ballot in 48 states and the District of Columbia, and failed to make the cut in New Hampshire and Oklahoma only because of technical errors in submitting petitions, not a failure to obtain sufficient signatures. Despite the fact that this places him on more than enough ballots to potentially win the electoral college, Badnarik is not included in the presidential debates because the Commission on Presidential Debates requires that included candidates have 15% support in polls by five different polling groups.

So the Arizona Libertarian Party has taken action. Arguing that the requirements make the debates nothing more than a contribution to the two major parties, they want the October 13 debate at Arizona State university cancelled, and have filed suit in state court to make sure that happens.
Party Treasurer Warren Severin said Thursday that the cost of the debate - estimated at more than $2 million - amounts to an unconstitutional gift of taxpayer funds for the two major parties. Severin, one of the plaintiffs in the legal action, wants a Maricopa County Superior Court judge to block the use of any public funds, a move designed to kill the event.

ASU publicist Carolyne Kennedy said there are no tax dollars involved. She said the out-of-pocket expenses are going to be borne by local individuals and businesses.

Severin said he's not convinced that ASU has, in fact, received sufficient donations to cover those costs. But even if it has, he said the university continues to devote staff time to putting the Oct. 13 event together.

All-in-all, not an unreasonable position to take. After all, if a candidate is clearly national in the scope of his campaign, why shouldn't he be included in a debate?

Besides, I'd like to see Michael Badnarik up there. I have a certain admiration for the Libertarians, and would love to see them grow as a political national force. They certainly don't fit the stereotype of "all politicians are the same." And since more political speech, debates, and ideas are healthier than fewer, his inclusion (along with nadir) would be a good thing for America.


Jerry Rubin -- Leftist Wuss Makes Faux Protest

Liberal activist Jerry Rubin is going on an anti-Nader hunger strike -- sort of. He is seeking to persuade the independent candidate Ralph Nader to drop out of the presidential race.
"I know Ralph Nader and I don't think he's doing the right thing," Rubin said Saturday, adding the consumer advocate's campaign is dividing the progressive political movement.

"Greens, progressives and Democrats are more divided how than they were in 2000 because of him," Rubin said.

And I was all prepared to offer some admiring words about Rubin's commitment, his willingness to "put his money where his mouth is", so to speak, until I came across the following sentence.
He said he plans to consume only herbal tea and juice until Oct. 9 and, after that, only water until Nov. 2 if Nader doesn't take a meeting with hi

What a wuss! What a wimp! Why aren't you going all the way, Jerry -- no food, no liquids, nothing at all -- until Nader drops out? Why don't you make it clear that you are serious about this by saying "Hey, Ralph! Your failure to drop out will result in your murder of Jerry Rubin?" Could it be that you now that Nader IS a serious candidate, with a serious message, and that you realize that by dropping out he would be selling out, just like you have, to the Democrat Party plutocratic elite?

Until you are willing to do a Bobby Sands hunger strike, stop trying to get face-time in the media!


Two New Additions

I've added two new listings over on the sidebar.

The first is for a great blog I just encountered -- UNCoRRELATED. The author seems like someone I would like to sit down with over a beer or three and talk politics.

The other is the great new listing site, BlogExplosion. It brings exposure for surfing listed blogs -- sort of "pay to play." You get a hit for evry two member sites you visit. Sounds like a deal to me. I've already found a couple I'll be revisiting.


Friday, October 01, 2004

A Sad, Sad, Sad Story -- Please Pray For All Touched By This

High school kids and cars. They make me crazy sometimes, since I teach 10th graders. This morning was another reminder of how terrible that combination can be. This isn't my school (it's a good 30 miles away), but seeing the pictures on the news tonight of one car ripped in half did the same to my heart. They weren't my kids -- but they could have been.

Four young lives -- and the other driver -- gonein a flash. May God have mercy on their souls.


Put Up Or Shut Up, Nancy!

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi today claimed that the 2003 redistricting of Texas was illegal. This despite the redistricting being upheld by state and federal courts and the US Department of Justice. Her target, of course, is House Majority Tom DeLay, who saw several associates indicted by political hack Ronnie Earle as part of a political witchhunt

That said, I have a challenge for the Wicked Witch of the West Coast. If you can find a single statute or provision of the US or Texas constitutions violated by the redistricting itself, I will take you out for lunch at Seabrook's finest dining establishment, Tookie's, and let you order anything off the menu. I'd recommend the Squealer.


More Florida Vote Problems -- Courtesy Of Leftists

Florida Secretary of State Glenda Hood is reporting that tens of thousands of would-be voters who think they registered during independent voter registration drives may not be.

Some groups failed to complete sections of the registration forms that dealt with citizenship, mental competence, or felony convictions, rendering the applications void. Other groups are under investigation for committing fraud or trying to change party registration for some voters without informing them.

One leftist group is crying foul over Hood's directive that incomplete forms not be turned back over to groups to complete.
A group seeking copies of the incomplete applications in an effort to help people complete them said some counties turned over thousands of forms until Hood's office informed supervisors state law prohibits them from handing out copies of voter records except to specified groups, such as political committees and parties. Now the Washington-based Advancement Project isn't receiving any of the forms and fears thousands of people won't be able to vote.

"Clearly, way over the number that could determine the election," said Judith Browne, a lawyer with the group, which promotes multiracial participation in the democratic process. She was referring to President Bush's disputed 537-vote victory in Florida that gave him the presidency in 2000.

That group, America's Families United, has even sued (so far unsuccessfully) over the issue.
"It seems like every time that we try to take steps to help voters to make sure they get on the rolls and to make sure they are protected, the state and the counties put obstacles in the way," said Browne.

Yeah -- little things like THE LAW.

Of course, the leftists ignore the actions of Florida officials to remedy the problem.
Acting Duval elections supervisor Richard Carlberg said his office is trying to call the 1,441 applicants to let them know they won't be able to vote unless the forms are completed, but said many of the phone numbers on the forms aren't working numbers.

Hood said her office is only trying to help elections supervisors follow the law and that incomplete forms must be rejected.

Hood recommended that people who were registered by a group instead of at their county elections office check to make sure they were actually registered. She also said anyone registering to vote outside a county office should double check to make sure all information is accurate, forms are completely filled out and that the group plans to turn the applications in before midnight Monday.

Individuals taking responsibility and initiative to ensure that they are properly registered -- what a concept. The very notion of personal responsibility reeks of opposition to the Democrat Platform and must surely, somehow, discriminate against and disenfranchise minorities and octogenarian transplants from New York.


Will They Punish Us With Nude Pictures Of Leonard Nimoy?

A Canadian Judge has banned United Federation of Planets representative Reni Sentana-Ries, Grand World Councillor, Lion of Judah and Guardian of the Arab Prophetess Uthrania Seila, has been banned from using the Internet. The Starfleet emissary, more mundanely known as Reinhard Mueller of Edmonton, is accused of violating hate speech laws by promoting racial hatred of Jews.

Here's where the case gets interesting.
While Mueller has denied the charges, Judge David McNab made it a condition of his bail which forbids him from using the Internet.

Mueller objected saying access to the Internet is a right of all citizens of earth and said he needs it to research his defence. McNab said there were other avenues available for him to do legal research.

Mueller’s defence is original. According to court documents Mueller will claim that there was no problem with his site until he demanded the removal of the monetary system and insisted people comply with the universal order of stellar economics.

In another excerpt, Mueller warns that if the new economic world order isn't implemented will earn judgment from the Starfleet Commanders on your leadership heads!

Let's stipulate that this guy is a real nutjob. That said, I'm much more concerned about judges restricting access to the fastest growing technology and the threat to free speech than I am about some whacked out guy spouting insane "prophecies" on his website. My concern is that these "hate speech" prohibitions are going to work their way into American law, especially if we allow folks on the left to regain political power. After all, they would likely classify most of Christian teaching as "hate speech" and shut down most conservative talk radio under the same rubric.

So I'm going to hope that Mueller manages to "live long and prosper," because in this case "the needs of the one outweigh the needs of the many". . . even if that seems illogical.


I've Missed You Guys!

It's been quite a week.


An unexpected late meeting.

Work to prep for my classes.

A minor family illness that necessitated TLC.

And a desire to spend more time with the Loyal Opposition rather than in front of a computer.

I'll try to be more regular.


Monday, September 27, 2004

Disunity In The Sacred Places.

Yet another chapter in the long history of conflict between different groups of Christian faithful in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher occurred today. A group of Greek Orthodox priests and Franciscans got into a fistfight over whether or not a door in the church built over the Savior's tomb should be open or closed during a procession.

Over the course of over a millennium, an uneasy truce has developed between different Christian groups regarding rights to certain spots in the building, the right to repair or decorate walls, and even the right to live on the building's roof. This conflict was both encouraged and mediated by the Ottomans and other Muslim rulers in Jerusalem.

Monday's fight broke out during a procession of hundreds of Greek Orthodox worshippers commemorating the 4th century pilgrimage by Helena, mother of Emperor Constantine, to Jerusalem. Tradition says that during the trip, Helena found the cross on which Jesus had been crucified.

Church officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that at one point, the procession passed a Roman Catholic chapel, and priests from both sides started arguing over whether the door to the chapel should be open or closed.

The fight was broken up by Israeli police using clubs, and the procession continued.

There have been other conflicts in recent years.
In 2003, Israeli police threatened to limit the number of worshippers allowed to attend an Easter ceremony if the denominations did not agree on who would lead the ceremony. Police brokered a last-minute deal and the ceremony passed peacefully.

But a year earlier, the Greek patriarch and Armenian clergyman designated to enter the tomb exchanged blows after a dispute over who would be first to exit the chamber.

And how do we expect to ward off the jihadis if we cannot resolve our own disputes in fraternal love?


Sunday, September 26, 2004

Hey, Dude, Where've You Been?

It's that awful point of the semester -- grades are due. Those of you who teach (or who love a teacher) know the horror of that time. I've not had much blogging time, not trying to finish the grades for 170 students.

To quote Doug MacArthur -- I shall return!

Probably today.


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