Tag: government

The Government

from Saul William’s email list:


We have overcome.

Except those of us now in Gaza. Except those of us whom police kill. Except those of us who are suspects. Except those of us whom the church hate. Except those of us damned to taste good. Except those of us held by fate. We are meeting in the capitol. Word is, freedom will not wait.

All that once was never shall be.
All they could do won’t be done.
All we sang of is now happening.

[note to self:]
Must write
new songs
to become…

…And so it was. Through the collective imagination of the people, the force of will and human potential, and an unflinching ability to hold himself to task, Niggy Tardust was liberated. His ability to see beyond the boundaries and obstacles of ‘genre’, ‘race’, and suppression, allowed him to encompass a grace and sound that embodied the all. All that had stood against him, now stood with him. All that had claimed a lesser harmony, now craved voice and resonance. He stood with poets, painters, dancers, students, children of the night who had transformed themselves into a million bright ambassadors of morning, and proclaimed,

“We declare declaratives and deny the official. Based in the landmark of the G-spot, we have overtaken ourselves and overthrown our forefathers. Let there be light within the light and let it answer to the name of Darkness. We are forever risen from the deadly: the anti-virus and the All Stars. Granted power by forces unbeknownst to us. Made in the likeness of kindness. We offer anger to the angry and fear to the fearful. We dance at our own funerals to forsake the mourners…

…This is no time to cry! This is no time at all! Here is the moment of the overlooked and the unforeseeable. We are the elected officials of the people: poets and artists. We are the declarative statement of the inarticulate, the irreparably damaged goods of the bad meaning good. We are the government! We are the government! We are the government!”

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/the-government/

a new beginning?

Today I hope is a new beginning for the United States.  Voters have made a loud and clear statement of unhappiness with the direction of our country.  The balance of power has clearly shifted in the House of Representatives and currently looks to swing in the Senate as well.  However, we will not know the results of the final Senate race for probably a month.

The results of the elections were good news in its own right.  However even better news came this morning.  Donald Rumsfeld is stepping down as the Secretary of Defense.  Perhaps now, the military leaders can actually implement strategies that will help end the conflict in Iraq instead of inciting conflict.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/a-new-beginning/

Special Comment: Advertising Terrorism

Another Special Comment from Keith Olbermann:

Advertising Terrorism

An excerpt:

But to forgive you for terrorizing us, we would have to believe you somehow competent in keeping others from doing so.

Yet, last week, construction workers repairing a subway line in New York City, were cleaning out an abandoned manhole on the edge of the World Trade Center site, when they stumbled on to the impossible:  human remains from 9/11.

Bones and fragments.

Eighty of them.

Some as much as a foot long.

The victims had been lying, literally in the gutter, for five years and five weeks.

The families and friends of each of the 2,749 dead–who had been grimly told in May of 2002 that there were no more remains to be found–were struck anew as if the terrorism of that day had just happened again.

And over the weekend they’ve found still more remains.

And now this week will be spent looking in places that should have already been looked at a thousand times five years ago.

For all the victims in New York, Mr. Bush–the living and the dead–it’s a touch of 9/11 all over again.

And the mayor of this city, who called off the search four-and-a-half years ago is a Republican.

The governor of this state with whom he conferred is a Republican.

The House of Representatives, Republican.

The Senate, Republican.

The President, Republican.

And yet you can actually claim that you and you alone can protect us from terrorism?

You can’t even recover our dead from the battlefield–the battlefield in an American city–when we’ve given you five years and unlimited funds to do so!

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/special-comment-advertising-terrorism/

The death of habeas corpus

The President finally signed the Military Commissions Act of 2006.  This is a scary bill, that hopefully will get wiped off the books, either by the Supreme Court or by the next Congressional session.  A lot of the stuff going on at the governmental level reminds me of the Antibalas’ song “Who is this America?”  Honestly I don’t know.

A Special Comment by Keith Olbermann.  See below the cut for the text of Olbermann’s comment.  (He says this much more eloquently than I could)

Glenn Greenwald’s take.


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Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/the-death-of-habeas-corpus/

The Party of Patriots?

from Crooks and Liars (via MyDD)

Paul Evans is the real deal. City Councilman in Monmouth, Oregon at age 18, Evans has been twice elected as the city’s mayor, served in the Air Force and the Air National Guard and been a teacher at Western Oregon University and Oregon State University. Evans is currently running as a Democrat for the State Senate in Oregon, his campaign representing one of the party’s best pick-up opportunities in the chamber this year. And now he has been informed that he will be shipping out for duty in Afghanistan on November 5, as Peter Wong reports for the Salem Statesman Journal.

When Election Day rolls around three weeks from today, Oregon Senate candidate Paul Evans will learn his fate from afar: Afghanistan.

Evans, a veteran of the Air Force and Oregon Air National Guard, will be en route to the nation with the 116th Air Control Squadron.

He is scheduled to leave Nov. 5, 10 days ahead of his original deployment date. His mission will last 60 days — which means he would be back for the opening of the legislative session on Jan. 8 if he is elected Nov. 7 to the Senate District 10 seat.

[…] In a written statement, he said, “When my commander said I was needed, there was no question of whether or not I would go. Duty calls.”

[…]He likely is the nation’s only candidate who will be on active duty in the Middle East on Election Day.  (Read More from the Statesman Journal)


Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/the-party-of-patriots/

A Brave New World

This is the world the Bush administration has helped create.  A world where nuclear weapons are spreading.  Eventually something very, very bad is going to happen.

See Glenn Greenwald’s blog for his take on the situation. (There’s no need for me to recreate the wheel)

More from Gleen Greenwald: Iraq vs. North Korea 

I wonder what we can do to change this course we seem to be on. 

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/a-brave-new-world/

Olbermann’s Special Comments

Perhaps the harshest mainstream critic of the Bush Administration is Keith Olbermann of MSNBC.  In resent weeks he has used the “Special Comments” section of his show Countdown to intelligently attack the stupidity of the administration.  Finally more of the media is beginning to wake up and acknowledge the uniqueness of his work. (from the Washington Post)

Last night’s Special Comment

It amazes me (and Olbermann) the stuff that comes out of the Bush Administration.  The seem to try to bend everything to perpetuate a culture of fear.  Trying to make us blind to the principles from our constitution that they are infringing on every day.  Make no mistake, if we continue down the road set out by this administration, we will be attacked again.  The actions of this administration do not protect us.  We are heading towards some sort of theocracy.  That is not a country I want to be a part of.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/olbermanns-special-comments/

Who is This America?

The scandal developing around former US House Rep. Mark Foley just blows my mind.  First of all, the breach of trust by the congressman is staggering.  But perhaps even more unsettling to me is the spin being put on this by the Republican leadership.  I’ve seen spin at first trying to down play the seriousness of the emails to even claiming that Foley was a “victim” of the 16 yr old boy. WTF? are you kidding me.  What is even more surreal about this whole thing, is that Foley helped craft the legislation that more than likely will should land him in jail.

Here is an excellent post on some of the aspects of the Foley scandal from Glenn Greenwald’s blog Unclaimed Territory: Various Foley Scandal Items 

What should be even more troubling to the administration and Republican leadership, is that it increasingly looks like this scandal could consume the upper echelons of the Republican House leadership.  The current Speaker of the House and House Majority leader have both been suspected of trying to cover up the Foley matter.  For details read this post from Greenwald’s blog: John Boehner = Denny Hastert plus Key Questions for Tom Reynolds.  Even the conservative Washington Times is calling for Hastert to resign.

So three high ranking Republicans were at least at some level involved in a cover up.  At least until the evidence was to great to overcome.  Then it was on to spin city.

I really don’t know what it means to be an American right now.  I’m really not sure it is something to be proud of.   I wonder if it is possible to restore what we’ve lost as a country in the past six years.

Update: This is ridiculous! According to Mr. Foley’s attorney, Mr. Foley was abused by clergy as a child and is gay.

So now the spin is trying to make this a “gay” issue.  As I read on another blog earlier, they are right, in one way it is a gay issue.  The fact that this man had hide who he was, be ashamed of who he was, because our so called “Christian” nation looked down on him is deplorable.  However, whatever may have happened to him as a child is still no justification for his actions.  His actions would have been just as disgusting if they were directed to a female congressional page.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/who-is-this-america/

We’ve lost all credibility…

As a nation, we continue down a road of insignificance.  Yesterday the House of Representatives passed HR 6166.  This resolution allows the following things: (from the sidebar of this CNN Article)

  • Requires that a defendant being tried by military commission have access to any evidence given to a jury.
  • Drops a section of the administration’s previous proposal that stated an existing ban on cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment satisfies the nation’s obligations under the Geneva Conventions.
  • Prohibits “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions. Defines grave breaches as acts such as torture, rape, biological experiments and cruel and inhuman treatment.
  • Notes the president has the authority to interpret “the meaning and application” of the Geneva Conventions.
  • Allows hearsay evidence.
  • Allows coerced testimony if the statement was acquired before a 2005 ban on cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and a judge finds it to be reliable. Bans coerced statements taken after the 2005 ban went into effect if it violates constitutional definitions of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.
  • Bars individuals from protesting violations of Geneva Conventions standards in court.

(Bullet points from the Associated Press)

We are flaunting years of international agreements.  We are damaging America’s reputation with the rest of the world.  We are endangering our soldiers in future conflicts.  And for a country that is supposably “Christian,” we are not acting like it.  We will not be able to undo this legislation.  Even if the Democrats try to change it after the mid-term elections, they will not have enough votes to over rule a Presidential veto. Plus 34 Democrats voted for this resolution (names and states represented below the cut).  More than likely the Senate will pass this as well today and Bush will quickly sign it into law.

Why doesn’t American care?  What can we do?  Are we going to see a theocratic American in my lifetime?  These are my fears.  Its almost as if some of the “Christian right” are trying to speed along the rapture. 

US Senator Russ Feingold’s statement In Opposition to the Military Commissions Act

US Senator John Kerry speaks out as well as reported on The Democratic Daily

US Senator Hillary Clinton speaks as reported on Crooks and Liars

US Senator Barak Obama speaks as reported on Eschaton

Update: The Bill passes the Senate 65-34. 

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/weve-lost-all-credibility/