Archive for the Politics Category

The Confederate Flag:  What Does It Mean To You? (July 6, 2015)

Posted in Politics, Race, Slavery, Society, South on July 6, 2015 by

. . .

1          “It means that Blacks are second class citizens.”

2          “It means that voting rights should be denied.”

3          “It means that discrimination should be allowed.”

4          “It means that lynching should be legal.  For Blacks, I mean.”

. . .

Bumper stickers of the week:

E          “All of the above.” 

It’s mean?

Trans-Pacific Partnership / United Nations Convention On The Law Of The Sea (May 25, 2015)

Posted in Clinton, Foreign Policy, International Finance, Kleptocracy, O'Bama, Politics, Presidency, Trade on May 25, 2015 by

. . .

5          “The United Nations Convention On The Law Of The Sea (UNCLOS) cedes minimal U.S. authority to international institutions; the Republicans vehemently oppose the treaty.  The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) concedes substantial U.S. sovereignty to international corporations; the Republicans ecstatically support the treaty.”

6          “Go figure.  If O’Bama supports something, the Republicans hate it.  If O’Bama opposes something, the Republicans love it.  O’Bama supports the TPP, the Republicans love it.  What is up?”

5          “What is up?  O’Bama is not allowing anyone other than a few Senators to review the language of the legislation.  That is surreal.”

6          “And perverse and undemocratic.  If the Republicans had pulled that stunt, they would have gotten hammered.”

5          “At the end of his administration, Clinton capitulated to the Republicans and signed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act (GLBA), the legislation that repealed part of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 and has led to reckless financial speculation.  The damage done by DOMA has been undone, but the damage done by GLBA will undo America.”

6          “O’Bama may be the first President in American history to switch political parties while in office.”

5          “Other than Clinton.  They will still hate O’Bama because he remains Black.”

6          “Historians so inclined will be able to uncover the critique of a few prophets with honor who chronicled the dismantling of America in real time.”

. . .

Bumper stickers of the week:

“A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself within.  The essential causes of Rome’s decline lay in her people, her morals, her class struggle, her failing trade, her bureaucratic despotism, her stifling taxes, her consuming wars.” Will Durant

George Carlin was right

Bulk Collection Of Telephony Data. Again. (December 16, 2013)

Posted in Book Reference, Civil Rights/Civil Liberties, Constitution, Courts, Due Process, First Amendment, FISA, Journalism, Judicial Arrogance, Law, Newspapers, O'Bama, Politics, Press/Media, Privacy, Republican Federal Judge Syndrome on December 16, 2013 by

. . .

L1        “You never know what a Monday will bring.  A federal judge ruled that the NSA’s bulk collection of Americans’ telephony records likely violates the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

L2        “You did not hear the word ‘telephony’ in polite parlance two dozen years ago.  The courts must now address the interplay of law with technology far more sophisticated than a pair of soup cans and a string.”

L1        “Most federal judges were ‘Arts and Crafts’ majors in college who may understand Tennyson but really do not understand technology.  Listen to the techs who install IT systems in the state and federal courts.  Some of these judges are still looking for the rotary dial.”

L2        “The government’s reliance on a case from the prehistoric days of telephony – way back in 1979 – is proof positive that the issue must be addressed anew in light of the new technology today.”

L1        “They will need to refer more often to Newton’s Telecom Dictionary than to Black’s Law Dictionary.  That will be fun.”                  

. . .

L1        “Within a fortnight of the Democrats’ decision to require the Senate to ‘advise and consent’ and vote on O’Bama’s appointments to places such as the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals, the decision will have consequences.  One or more of the new appointees could be assigned to the reviewing tribunal.  If there is en banc review of the three panel decision, there are now more Democrats than Republicans.”

L2        “But will the Democrats defer to their benefactor?  Is there another Republican appellate court judge who may be a fan of the Constitution rather than unchecked federal intrusion?  And we always have the five Supremes who will get to chime in.” 

L1        “Who just don’t get it.  They do not even want to admit that the NSA exists.”

. . .

L1        “Judge Leon (Bush II) overcame the always pernicious ‘Republican Federal Judge Syndrome’ that almost always plagues Republican appointees.  Yet the judge once again displays the occupational hazard of these imperial federal judges.  His opinion is snarky, arrogant, condescending, intemperate, and sloppy.  The screed deserves a B+ for intuiting basic truth, a C- for style and an F for arrogance.”

L2        “When you are going to be courageous, you must be flawless.”

L1        “There are more than a few good women and men who are concerned that collecting the metadata is constitutional and may prevent a great catastrophe.”

L2        “But in the final analysis, there is the Constitution.” 

. . .

[See the “e-ssays” titled USA PATRIOT ACT (April 4, 2005), Less Government Regulation Series: Google (Nov. 30, 2009), Boycott Facebook? (August 2, 2010), Brave 1984 Farm: The Best Of All Possible Worlds (March 19, 2012) and Hero or Traitor? (June 10, 2013) and I Spy, You Spy, They Spy (October 28, 2013).]

[See the “e-ssays” titled Judicial Activism: Rogue Republican Judges (January 28, 2013), The Paradox Of The Republican Federal Judge: Republican Federal Judge Syndrome (September 23, 2013) and Past Time: Exercising The “New Clear Option” (November 25, 2013).]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Free Edward Snowden

Pardon Edward Snowden

Bestow a Presidential Medal of Freedom on Edward Snowden

Quash the sub poena issued to James Risen

Free the Press

In a dozen plus years and without a debate or a vote, technology has deprived us of privacy.  With little debate and many hasty votes, Congress has deprived us of privacy at every opportunity.  We as a society should create a rebuttable presumption in favor of privacy even if it appears to sacrifice security.  Our personal insecurities are actually creating greater national insecurity. 

The Paradox Of The Republican Federal Judge: Republican Federal Judge Syndrome (September 23, 2013)

Posted in Courts, Judges, Law, Politics, Republican Federal Judge Syndrome on September 23, 2013 by

. . .

L1        “They spend their Saturday nights dutifully licking and sealing envelopes containing missives condemning the government on behalf of the Republican Party, then get their coveted federal judgeship, and then spend their career granting every motion and request for relief filed by any government agency or large institution to the detriment of the public and/or an individual.”

L2        “The vexing ‘Paradox of the Republican Federal Judge.’  The Republican Federal Judge condemns the government to get there and represents the government once there.  Leaves you wondering if we could save money by appointing one person to be the U.S. Attorney General and the Federal Judge.”

L1        “In a dispute between an individual and the government, the Republican Federal Judge sides with the government.  In a dispute between an individual and the police, the Republican Federal Judge sides with the police.  In a dispute between an individual and an insurance company, the Republican Federal Judge sides with the insurance company.  In a dispute between an individual and a bank, the Republican Federal Judge sides with the bank.  In a dispute between an individual and a large corporation, the Republican Federal Judge sides with the large corporation.

L2        “I’ve seen that side in practice.”

. . .

L1        “He didn’t even sense the irony of his circumstance.  He supported and financed the Republican Senator who nominated the Republican Federal Judge appointed by the Republican President who could not wait for the Republican U.S. Attorney nominated by the Republican Senator and appointed by the Republican President to file a motion to deny relief to him and assess fees against him in his dispute with the gov-mint.”

L2        “Republican Federal Judge Syndrome.  So many of them are RFJS-Positive.  You can still blame it on the Democrats.”

. . .

[And then there are the exceptions. and]

[See the “e-ssay titled “You’re fired. Sue me.” (August 13, 2012).]

Bumper sticker of the week:

The law serves the wealthy and well-connected.  At every opportunity.

Has Scalia Gone Feral? (March 4, 2013)

Posted in Judges, Law, Move To Amend, Politics, Supreme Court on March 4, 2013 by

. . .

LS2      “Scalia has gone feral.”

LS1      “In the past, he demanded that the Court and the courts construe congressional language in a statute or provision literally – or as he defined literally – even in the face of clear contrary legislative intent and then took great delight in often perverse or unintended consequences or interpretations.”

LS2      “Now he is transforming the High Court into a MegaCongress to proclaim what he thinks animated Congress when it passed legislation.  In the face of crystal clear Congressional language and equally clear legislative intent regarding the Voting Rights Act, he appointed himself to second guess Congress and impose his personal prejudices on the populace.”

LS1      “At least he is blatant and blunt about it.  In his capacity as the Law Czar, however, he surely will not allow a person to bring and maintain a claim to instate the Move To Amend legislation on the ground that Congress would have passed the legislation except for the overweening influence of corporations.”

LS2      “That’s a new possibility.  Introduce a bill in the Supreme Court and let them pass judgment.  Two can play that game, yet only one person is allowed to play the game in the American legal game.”

. . .

LS2      “His great contribution to legal thinking is a grand sophistry.  ‘Originalism’ is an admixture of equal parts hypocrisy, dishonesty, perversity and absurdity.”

LS1      “And risibility, but it is a serious matter.  He is becoming even more grating and obnoxious.  Sarcasm is the first cousin of anger.  He is angry.  Ergo, he is sarcastic.”

LS2      “Sourcaustic.  In contemporary patois, Scalia is a bully of the worst kind.  A bully and a coward.  He uses the bench as a bully pulpit and then cowers behind the guards and security detail.”

LS1      “If someone asked him to step outside, Scalia would soil his panties and then curl up in a fetal position and cry for help.”

LS2      “He should take senior status and take over a hate radio show on Anger Mongering (AM) radio.”

LS1      “A festschrift of his proclamations does not require more than a few hundred words.  He is worth a footnote perhaps but much less than a chapter.  Someone, probably a former fawning law clerk, will spawn a 900 page idolatrous hagiographic piece.”

. . .

LS1/LS2  “He fails to realize that civility is not unconstitutional.”

. . .

[LS1 = Legal Scholar 1; . . . ]

[See the “e-ssays” titled One Gun Per White Adult Male? A Flintlock Musket? The “One Man, One Gun” Decision (October 4, 2010), Are Courts Irrelevant? Are Courts Illegitimate? (October 3, 2011) and The Supreme Court – Unrepresentative And Illegitimate: The 33.3 Percent Solution (October 1, 2012), three of the “First Monday in October” commentaries on the Supreme Court.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

I don’t like some lawyers because some lawyers are not likable.

Do Supreme Court Justices get rabies shots?

“Lame Duck” (November 26, 2012)

Posted in Elections, O'Bama, Politics, Presidency on November 26, 2012 by

. . .

1          “O’Bama was a lame duck on November 4, 2008 because he was only in office for one term at that time.  He had to start campaigning and make decisions with an eye toward re-election.”

2          “Single-term Presidents are often regarded as place holders and almost disregarded or faintly regarded by historians.”

1          “Now he has another four years and is free from the need to campaign or stand for re-election.  He is only as lame as he wants to be.  He still deals pork, appoints federal judges and can get a kid into Harvard.”

2          “A politician who lost the election last week is a lame duck.”

1          “If you are not coming back, you are lame.”

2          “O’Bama needs to make his come back and find his groove.  The next six months will determine the next four years.”

. . .   

[See the “e-ssay” titled Immanentize The Eschaton: Move To Sunny Somalia (December 20, 2010).]

Bumper sticker of the week:

If O’Bama is re-elected, I am moving to Somalia

Dixie Visited (September 17, 2012)

Posted in Civil Rights/Civil Liberties, Civil War, Political Parties, Politics, Race, South, Southern Strategy on September 17, 2012 by

. . .

H1          “One hundred and fifty years ago today, Northern immigrants battled Southern serfs in Western Maryland.”

H2          “And they could not even agree on the name of the skirmish.  The Northerners named battles after nearby bodies of water and Southerners after nearby towns.  Antietam versus Sharpsburg.”

H1          “Given the outcome, the United States refer to it as Antietam.  They still don’t agree on the name of the Great Campaign.  The War of Northern Aggression or the War of Southern Terrorism.”

H2          “The war was always about slavery not state’s rights in the South.  The stalemate in Miller’s cornfield and on Burnside’s Bridge was enough to cover for Lincoln to expand the endeavor from saving the Union to starting the abolition of slavery in the South and new states in the West.”

H1          “As they always say, tactically inconclusive but strategically significant.”

. . .     

H1          “A person and a society are measured by whether property rights are protected or human rights are cherished.  In the South, property rights were exalted; human rights were actively and systematically violated.”

H2          “Humans want to be free with perhaps some societal restraints to guide behavior, yet humans instinctively desire to colonize property and to enslave others.  True to form, the colonists stole property from the Red man and denied liberty to the Black man.  Civilization emerges when those impulses are restrained by mutual consent.”

H1          “You mean government.  The colonists in America rebelled and obtained independence, yet slavery in many incarnations continued unabated.” 

H2          “The caste system and class condescension continued in the South.  The descendants of the English continued the subtle oppression of the descendants of the Irish and the Scots.  Southern society was an extension of the rigid social and economic hierarchy in the British Isles.”

H1          “Blacks were slaves and three fifths of a human, the most perverse mathematical formula in the history of humankind.  Most Whites in the south were indentured servants, share croppers, peasants and serfs.  Servitude served up along a continuum.  Despite their lower-class status, poor Whites could take comfort in their legal superiority over Blacks.  That was a great palliative and motivator.” 

H2          “From its adoption in 1791, the Bill of Rights rarely protected lower class Whites south of the Mason-Dixon line.  The Thirteenth Amendment changed the laws on the books, but the Hundred Year War of Terror raged in the South from 1865 to 1965.  Passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1965 changed the legal landscape somewhat, although events on the ground changed slowly.”

H1          “Americans have tolerated Made In The U.S.A. terrorism on her soil for over two centuries.  The South ante bellum and post bellum was and perhaps less so today is an aristocracy and oligarchy operated by and for a small elite.” 

H2          “And nothing threatens ignorance like education.  High schools and higher education in the South were reserved for wealthy white males.  By contrast, in the North education is exalted.  At the bequest and behest of Benjamin Franklin and others, the University of Pennsylvania was open to all citizens.”

H1          “Religiosity is provided to supplant free thought and ratiocination.  Religion provides pat answers and precludes probing questions.”  

H2          “The South also reveres the military because of the need to maintain internal discipline by force and fear and to repel threats and challenges to its medieval system.”

H1          “Lincoln and his fellow Republicans sought to maintain the Union over any other goal.  For both strategic and humanitarian motives, he emancipated the slaves in two phases.  His conviction and efforts maintained the Union.  Now the Republicans campaign in the South and exploit anti-African American racism and fears of lawlessness among White voters.”

H2          “If the South had won the rebellion, the United States of America would have fewer stars and perhaps fewer stripes for the departed former colonies on its flag.  The United States of America Sans The South would be a Blue Nation.  Without all the government subsidies from the Blue States to the Red South States, the United States S.T.S. would have a less unbalanced budget.  The South would be a White Mexico today.” 

H1          “Funny how life turns out.  The ‘Southern Strategy’ is an ironic development.  The old Republicans freed the slaves and the new Republicans play on the fear of the freed slaves.  In this election, the Southern Strategy is now the National Strategy.”

H2          “And look at wage rates.  The public relations guys have a clever slogan – the ‘right to work.’  What they should say is the ‘right to work for a pittance.’  Keep them enslaved in subtle ways.”

H1          “Leaves you wondering whether anything really has changed.”

H2          “Demographics are destiny.  Black and Brown are slowly trumping White.” 

H1          “Old times there are not forgotten.”

H2          “Look away.”

. . .

[H1 = Historian 1; H2 = . . . ]

[September 17 is the one year anniversary of the Occupy movement and the four year anniversary to the day (Monday, September 15, 2008) when even those in power had to acknowledge the economic charade and chimera that was on the verge of collapse.]

[See the “e-ssay” titled “The Great National Dissolution: Resolving The Great Civil War (April 18, 2011)“]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Old times there are not forgotten; look away!

Mankind’s Motto:  To Colonize And To Enslave

How many Virginians does it take to change a light bulb?  Five.  One to call an electrician, two to mix drinks, and two to talk about how good the old bulb was.


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