Saturday, September 15, 2007

You Don't Say

Appearing at The Jaundiced Eye, the Independent Bloggers' Alliance, and My Left Wing.

"Over the past two and a half years, I have seen tyranny, dishonesty, corruption and depravity of types I never thought possible. I've seen things I didn't know man was capable of."

-- Alberto Ganzales

Alberto Gonzales on the occasion of his resignation from the post of Attorney General of the United States; September 14, 2007.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Black Republicans Quiet in 2007

2007 not the Year of the Black Republican.


Remember how the GOP targeted Democratic Constituency in 3 High-Profile Races in 2006?
Remember the article in the Washington Post and other newspapers around the country about J. Kenneth Blackwell the Ohio secretary of state -- a crusading conservative with an appetite for political combat -- who also assumed a leading role in the Republican party's efforts to break the Democrats' decades-long grip on the black vote.

The article also talked about former Maryland, Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele, whose candidacy had benefited from his friendship with two Republican National Committee chairmen.

Remember former Pittsburgh Steelers star Lynn Swann who challenged Democratic Gov. Edward G. Rendell.

They called themselves the new Black Republicans and THEY LOST!

You remember the article by Associated Press, They are the new black Republicans and they have a new name for the party. GOP they say stands for the Grow Out Party. These are African American Mayors and State lawmakers who say for far too long, Democrats have taken the black vote for granted. And they're fed up.

It's time, they say, for black voters to take back the party of Lincoln, to make the GOP look more like them: African American faces, young and old. Rich and poor. Professional and working class. And as more young black voters identify themselves as Republicans, some African American leaders hope this could be a year to fundamentally change the Party, to give it new color and a new attitude.

AAPP: I guess the Republican don't remember all of the bogus lies. Yes, I guess Black Republicans' don't remember their effort to change the party failed. As noted by GOP's leading candidates don't care about black or Latino people for that matter, and have snubbed the Tavis Smiley Forum at Morgan State.

Read More HERE.

I guess candidates like Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney and John McCain. Have no love for the folks at:

Project 21
Larry Elder
Republicans for Black Empowerment
Walter Williams
LaShawn Barber
Thomas Sowell
Booker Rising
The Cultural Strategist
Dell Gines
Vision Circle
Hugh Hewitt
Star Parker
Daniel Drezner
Ed Brown

What's up with black conservatives and Republicans like Bob Parks? He has been very quiet on the issue. I wonder why? I guess there won't be a taking back of the party of Lincoln by the American people. A new color and a new attitude for the Republican Party? Not!

Not in 2007, or for that matter, any time in the near or distant future.

Can John Edwards Win? Can Anyone?

  *Cross Posted at John Edward's Website*

I posted the beginnings of these thoughts in the Open Thread, but decided I was not done with the subject.

The video:

My original response is here, but I felt the need to expound.

Liberal leadership has learned one thing well.  The slash and burn tactics (now known as "swiftboating") by the far Right makes them walk on eggshells.

What they did not learn is that the Right really doesn't care who it pisses off.

Americans like to be pissed off.

If they employ the tactics of people like Coulter, Limbaugh and O'Reilly, they know someone will be offended... but others will enjoy that righteous-feeling indignant bullshit spewing.

It works.  It employs the "tsk tsk" factor of the religious right (defined by me only as the very fanatic sector) who love to give anyone their comeuppance. 

So they move the Overton Window merely by expressing the wildest accusatory *vindicatives (*Dianeism word) they can, and making it palatable by repetition.

Anyone who stands strong against their agenda is ridiculed, called Unpatriotic and bullied into submission.  Americans see the bullied left cower and retreat to these tactics and begin to believe the meme of "cut and run cowards".  Gore was a perfect example.  A man suited well for the job lost respect even among those of us who liked his message for not having the balls to stand up & demand his election be honored. 

Americans do not suffer a coward.

Then they line up a strong "Daddy" figure to make it all okay for us.  Works every time.  They can even get the village idiot elected by means of likability and strong use of sound byte cliche's. Sound like you have unbreachable commitment and you win.

Remember this?  Remember COURAGE?

Now is the time for someone to Stand and Speak to the ideal of doing the Hard Thing because it is the Right Thing.

It was not enough for John Edwards to speak about ending the war.  Not enough.  He opened the door to the Right to abuse him, without speaking boldly ala Kieth Olbermann, that the ONLY Patriotic thing to do is stop bleeding our nation, both literally and figuratively by staying in a failed and ill-chosen war.

Americans are angry, have been angry for so many years now, it is turning into apathetic feelings of hopelessness.  Many of us here are writing less in the face of complete disillusionment with our Elected Representatives.  May I say that again, lest they forget?

You are elected to REPRESENT US, that is your job, and you are failing miserably, Washington.

Over 70% of the people want out of this war, yet still our representatives cower in the face of actually saying so!

I'm sorry, but the one who can tap this, the one who captures our attention will speak for us, thus:


Address it, Mr. Edwards, or lose smiling.  Show your rage, show you feel as betrayed as we do.  Or lose.  Until someone stands for us, we will not show at the polls, will not vote for more of the same, we will "waste" our votes on Independents who actually speak for us in protest.

You know what we want?

1. Out of the War.

2. The Constitution not to be "A Piece of Paper".
  a) habeas corpus
  b) illegal search and seizure
  c) civil rights
  d) no torture

3.  An Economy without the yoke of trillions spent elsewhere in an unwinnable conflict.

4.  Infrastructure.  Katrina is still not resolved.

5.  Rights over our own bodies, Roe v Wade

6.  Gay people to be treated as human beings under the law.

Get my drift?  Are you shaking in your boots for fear of all/any of those touchy issues?  Good, because so are they!  Were they NOT, they would not fight against them so vehemently.

The man (or woman) who will win our hearts and perhaps reclaim our country's pride will stand.

Will Stand, not because it is easy, but because it is Hard, and the Right Thing to Do.

They will stand and say,

"A True Patriot knows in their hearts that our country was founded on equality, fairness, and the common good.

They will stand and say "I will HONOR this CONSTITUTION, not make a mockery of it, and you shall not fear your own government.  I am not the Decider, YOU ARE, and I will honor YOUR wishes, and allow the system of checks and balances to work as Our Founders intended.  I will not be a dictator.

I will bring our wearied soldiers home, to stand ready to protect you from the Real Dangers that are.  I will not spend their salaries on private Mercenaries who are robbing this country blind.

Americans have spoken, and I speak for them when I say, the Right Thing at this time is to leave Iraq.  It is not our battle and weakens our ability to protect ourselves by overextending ourselves there.

I am brave and strong and will guard our ports and honor GOOD intelligence.  That is the best way to protect us, not creating more terrorists by our interference in a civil war.

I will protect the poor from exploitation, and stand for their rights in face of a disaster.

While we each have the right to Worship as we choose, and do as our morals dictate, America was founded on Freedom, and I uphold the Freedoms for All Americans, and their right to pursuit of happiness.  The hard choice, the right choice is to allow people of any orientation choose partners and commit to them as they choose. To allow women the choice of their own reproductive rights.  Americans don't dictate others lives.  It was not so long ago, that we left another country for the right to do as we chose, religiously, so we must not infringe on other, whether or not we agree with them.  Americans LOVE personal Freedom.

A Real American Leader will not sneak into your private affairs. A True Patriot does not break laws himself, and does not lower the American Way to that of torturers and bad guys.  We wear the White Hat and Do the Right Thing!

He stands for the good of all of you, not just the wealthy.  He will not stand idle while you lose your homes crying "NO TAXES" that in reality mean only for the wealthy.

We are the richest nation in the World, yet most of you are without health care, or the financial burden of said health care is crippling you; both privately, and in global competition for YOUR jobs by nations with health care.

I hear you America, and stand beside you, for you and at YOUR SERVICE.


Until this happens, we all lose.

Until someone speaks for us, the boogeyman wins. Our collective frustration will follow he who stirs our blood, as always, for the right reasons or the wrong ones.

Its time for someone to speak to the roots and solutions, the REAL reason for our collective anger and fear.

For Americans are angry, and he who channels this Righteous Anger will win.

Come out swinging for once, and America will follow.

It is Time.


Dennis “Firewall” Kucinich

Crossposted from Left Toon Lane, Bilerico Project & My Left Wing

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This is Part 6 of the series "I No Longer Fear The Kucinich Revolution."
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

Looking at where we are at as a nation, we are in the same place with our domestic issues as where Cleveland was in 1977 when Dennis Kucinich was elected Mayor.

When Kucinich took office, the city was out of control. The city was the leader of the newly emerging "Rust Belt." City corruption was rampant, especially with the city's police department. In essence, Kucinich took the most unwanted and thankless job in America because he had a vision of a better Cleveland, Ohio.

During his tenure as Mayor, he began the long painful process of turning the city around and he risked his political career as well as his life to do so - to build a better Cleveland. Undoing decades of neglect, abuse and corruption cannot be completed overnight or in four years, but Kucinich's contribution to the city was to play the role of firewall or intervention counselor. He did his job so well, Republicans that had the job after him, praised his work as being visionary and the city would not be where it is today without his management of they city when it was in its darkest days.

I would submit to you we need a firewall in the White House because the Virus In Chief is spreading out of control.

Those who think they are throwing there vote away who also think Kucinich is the best for the job, well, that is just malware in the system.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Republicans and Compassionate Hedonism

Crossposted from Left Toon Lane, Bilerico Project & My Left Wing

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You can’t throw a dental dam these days without hitting a Gay Republican.

We have all heard of the old saw about those “who protest too much.” It only 10% of that is true, the GOP must be the biggest hotbed of suppressed homosexual activity the planet has ever known. Forget about the Greeks and the Romans, the Republicans must be swinging like no one ever has.

To me, this explains the big secret the Log Cabin Republicans have been withholding - they know where all the boas are hidden.

Note: My laptop died this week and is now in the caring and capable hands of Apple’s Center for Holy System Resurrection. Please be patient with the irregularity of publication for the next few days.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Assault of America - Rev. Lennox Yearwood attacked, and hospitalized

Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence

The ultimate test of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and moments of convenience, but where he stands in moments of challenge and moments of controversy.

--Martin Luther King, Jr., 27 January 1965

Beyond IRAQ: A Time to Break Silence

Protesting The War

Meanwhile we in the churches and synagogues have a continuing task while we urge our government to disengage itself from a disgraceful commitment. We must continue to raise our voices if our nation persists in its perverse ways in Vietnam. We must be prepared to match actions with words by seeking out every creative means of protest possible.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4, 1967

Please read the speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4, 1967, at a meeting of Clergy and Laity Concerned at Riverside Church in New York City HERE.

This Madness Must Cease

Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now. I speak as a child of God and brother to the suffering poor of Vietnam. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home and death and corruption in Vietnam. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours.

This is the message of the great Buddhist leaders of Vietnam. Recently one of them wrote these words:

"Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the heart of the Vietnamese and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. The Americans are forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that the Americans, who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of America will never again be the image of revolution, freedom and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism."

If we continue, there will be no doubt in my mind and in the mind of the world that we have no honorable intentions in Vietnam. It will become clear that our minimal expectation is to occupy it as an American colony and men will not refrain from thinking that our maximum hope is to goad China into a war so that we may bomb her nuclear installations. If we do not stop our war against the people of Vietnam immediately the world will be left with no other alternative than to see this as some horribly clumsy and deadly game we have decided to play.

The world now demands a maturity of America that we may not be able to achieve. It demands that we admit that we have been wrong from the beginning of our adventure in Vietnam, that we have been detrimental to the life of the Vietnamese people. The situation is one in which we must be ready to turn sharply from our present ways.

In order to atone for our sins and errors in Vietnam, we should take the initiative in bringing a halt to this tragic war. I would like to suggest five concrete things that our government should do immediately to begin the long and difficult process of extricating ourselves from this nightmarish conflict:

  1. End all bombing in North and South Vietnam.
  2. Declare a unilateral cease-fire in the hope that such action will create the atmosphere for negotiation.
  3. Take immediate steps to prevent other battlegrounds in Southeast Asia by curtailing our military buildup in Thailand and our interference in Laos.
  4. Realistically accept the fact that the National Liberation Front has substantial support in South Vietnam and must thereby play a role in any meaningful negotiations and in any future Vietnam government.
  5. Set a date that we will remove all foreign troops from Vietnam in accordance with the 1954 Geneva agreement.

Part of our ongoing commitment might well express itself in an offer to grant asylum to any Vietnamese who fears for his life under a new regime which included the Liberation Front. Then we must make what reparations we can for the damage we have done. We most provide the medical aid that is badly needed, making it available in this country if necessary. More HERE.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4, 1967

Battle Of Manhattan - The Fanatic vs. The Lady (redux)

Crossposted from Left Toon Lane, Bilerico Project & My Left Wing

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Here is a clipping of something I wrote on September 11, 2001 with my initial thoughts of the war machine gearing up.

Battle Of Manhattan - The Fanatic vs. The Lady

Two warriors faced off in the City of New York on September 11th, 2001. One warrior was the Lady Liberty, the other was the Fanatic.

The battle was not about water rights, genetically engineered foods, jobs or even taxes. This battle is about freedom and our very right to exist. By the word "our", I mean those who are free or want to be free.

Even though American fixtures such as the Pentagon are seen by some as a source of third world oppression, it is the same organization that saved the world from the last Fanatic. And the World Trade Center may have been seen as the symbol of the slave master for the third world, however it housed the records and managers of the worlds largest retirement funds where workers from all over the planet have placed their retirement savings. When people write checks to the International Red Cross or World Wildlife Fund, chances are that those account transactions were handled by companies that had offices at the World Trade Center.

But one of the goals of the Fanatic is to accelerate the loss of freedom. We will have more intrusion into personal privacy, impediments to travel and our rights to protest will be heavily curtailed. These mindless attacks are a bane for those of us who strive to change society by peaceful means - through printed words, expressed ideas and marches in the streets.

The Fanatic did make war upon The Lady Liberty and we, you and I, are The Lady. The Fanatic made war upon us, each and every one. So how do we, the physical embodiment of The Lady, fight the Fanatic? By maintaining our resolve to be free. The very act of maintaining freedom is the mightiest weapon that can be used against The Fanatic.

We must be diligent in our efforts to preserve freedom and to continue to press our elected officials to support initiatives that fight terrorism, fundamentalism and extremism of any kind. Other than scale, there is no difference between a pro-environmental bombing of a timber mill and an anti-capitalist destruction of a major world financial center. None. Belief, faith and cause are the foundations of terrorism, fundamentalism and extremism - all of which should be avoided by those who truly embrace freedom.

The Lady does have a very black eye from her battle with the Fanatic on Manhattan Island, but the victorious Fanatic walked away with a death sentence carved heavy upon his brow.

Monday, September 10, 2007

More on B.R.E.A.D., Payday Lending, and Ohio Representatives

This is a follow-up to yesterday's post (on another blog) about Doing Justice in Ohio. The following excerpt comes from my church's September newsletter:

At that Nehemiah Action Assembly, Senator Ray Miller pledged to introduce legislation in the state house to curb PayDay Lending. You may have seen recent articles in the Columbus Dispatch and elsewhere in which this issue and its abuses have been well documented. Though B.R.E.A.D. is mentioned, it is rarely given the credit for having moved this issue to the forefront.

Behind the scenes B.R.E.A.D. has been working with Senator Miller, a Democrat, and Representative Bill Batchelder, a Republican, to sponsor the same legislation in the House and in the Senate. This kind of strong bi-partisan cooperation will benecessary to pass a bill. At the August 24 meeting, B.R.E.A.D. was reminded that it will take phone calls, e-mails, and letter to state lawmakers to get this bill passed. PayDay Lenders have a well funded lobby and have doubled their spending in the legislature since 2006. Be prepared for some requests from your B.R.E.A.D. team to write, call, e-mail those who represent you in the statehouse!
About that bipartisan support--that is apparently the reason Ohio House Minority Leader Joyce Beatty has been hesitant to support the legislation. From the Other Paper article I linked yesterday...
Several state lawmakers of both parties have agreed to take on the cause. While others surely have their reservations, Beatty is one of the only legislators to openly criticize the effort, brushing off the proposed reforms as shortsighted and politically motivated.

Using her influence as the minority leader, Beatty has discouraged Democrats from working with Republican state Rep. Bill Batchelder of Medina, whom advocates have asked to sponsor the legislation in the House.

Known as an arch conservative, Batchelder has been against high-interest loan centers dating back to the 1990s, when he opposed legislation that led to the proliferation of payday lending shops. However, Beatty has repeatedly suggested Batchelder is using the issue to advance his aspirations to be speaker of the House next session.

“I will not support any legislative agenda that I feel is solely for someone’s political gain,” Beatty wrote in an op-ed column published last month in the Akron Beacon Journal.

That’s a problem because legislation will require bipartisan support, and Beatty is known for her ability to keep her caucus in line.

“It’s already damaged the prospects for getting the bill passed,” said Miller.

“I think we’ve laid out a good strategy, we’re fortunate to have bipartisan leadership on this with Rep. Batchelder and myself,” he added. “At the present time, our biggest challenge is the opposition from Rep. Beatty and her work to encourage members of her caucus to be neutral or opposed.”
I have a hard time understanding how a powerful Democrat in the Ohio House would want to delay implementing measures to protect our most vulnerable citizens from predatory lending practices for basically political reasons. Still, she did say I will not support any legislative agenda that I feel is solely for someone’s political gain, and has said that she is willing to hear from her constituents on this matter. Maybe even polite letters from people who are not her constituents, but are able to clearly express why this is not solely for someone's political gain.

The bill (I've been searching for a bill number and an official link, and will update if/when I find that) only proposes the same safeguards against predatory lending that military personnel are now granted via the Nelson Talent Amendment.
The proposed bill would cap interest rates on short-term loans at 36 percent. Currently, the rate on these loans can reach nearly 400 percent when calculated over a year. The bill also would call for financial incentives and tax credits for traditional lenders to encourage them to offer short-term, low-interest loans.
So we're talking about reasonable limits on the interest rates that can be charged, not shutting these places down, as Rep. Beatty seems to suggest here:
House Democratic Leader Joyce Beatty, who represents some of the same citizens as Miller, said she has talked to people in line waiting to get payday loans.

"People said to me, ‘Rep. Beatty, these folks will at least cash my check.’ One lady told me she couldn’t get her check cashed in any bank in the city," Beatty said.

"I have not had anybody call me and say, ‘I go to a payday lending establishment, and I think you should close them down.’ "
That quote is from an article that was published on July 23. Hopefully by this point, people have clarified to Representative Beatty that no one associated with this proposed bill is suggesting that payday lending establishments should be shut down Still, since she is in a position to either help or hurt the passage of a bill that could offer even some minimal protection to Ohio's most vulnerable citizens, I think it couldn't hurt to politely help see to it that she does understand what this is really about.

Petraeus Report: 6 months of Surge or Pelosi Inaction?

Crossposted from Left Toon Lane, Bilerico Project & My Left Wing

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Ever wonder how many lives would have been saved if we had YouTube for the Vietnam war? Or would the leaders of the day still deny the evident truth laying dead in the ditches and rivers of Baghdad? Would they still ignore the never ending stream of flag draped coffins coming in from the Middle East?

My guess is yes, they would. To deny the facts on the ground in Baghdad, it takes a Herculean capacity for denial to look at the Iraq War as nothing more than a total and abject disaster of Greecian tragedy proportions. Or they could be lying to our face. That sums up our President and his underlings - liars. No one can be so deluded as to thinking Iraq is a success. (Ok, McCain excluded.)

But what about Pelosi? How long is she going to go for the bullshit? How long will Reid back her up in letting Bush ruin the nation? So far, the Democrats have given us nothing but shame and embarrassment in the Congress. Instead of doing the job they were sent to do, they have achieved none of the major promises they gave us in the 2006 elections. I understand they also battle the Blue Dogs and there is the one vote majority in the Senate, but Pelosi and Reid haven't even tried. They have not lifted a finger. All they have done is take after Senator Craig and dropped their pants for Bush. They have willingly bent over and let Bush have his way with the war, FISA courts and on and on.

If Pelosi and Reid roll over this time and accept another six months of continued bloodshed and violence, it is time to remove them from office. They will have proven themselves as traitors to We The People.