DC Pastor Channels 400yr Old Puritan Values

People complain about the “Left Wing Bloggers” spreading misinformation and bias, and the “Right Wing Bloggers” giving skewed and incomplete viewpoints. Ta heck with all that, here’s a DC Pastor preaching that “Lesbianism is On the Rise” because “Sisters makin more money than brothers and it’s creating problems in families… that’s one of the reasons many of our women are becoming lesbians!”
According to this article in the Washington Blade, Rev. Willie Wilson, a Baptist Minister in DC, used these very words in a sermon delivered on July 3rd.
Some choice quotes:

“Lesbianism is about to take over our community. I ain’t homophobic because everybody here got something wrong with him,” he said. “But … women falling down on another woman, strapping yourself up with something, it ain’t real. That thing ain’t got no feeling in it. It ain’t natural. Anytime somebody got to slap some grease on your behind and stick something in you, it’s something wrong with that. Your butt ain’t made for that.

Lesbianism is about to take over our community. I’m talking about young girls. My son in high school last year, trying to go to the prom, he said, ‘Dad, I ain’t got nobody to take to the prom because all the girls in my class are gay. There ain’t but two of them straight and both of them are ugly. I ain’t got nobody to take to the prom.’

You got blood vessels and membranes in your behind. And if you put something unnatural in there, it breaks them all up. No wonder your behind is bleeding. It’s destroying us. Can’t make no connection with a screw and another screw. The Bible says God made them male and female. The Hebrew word “neged,” which means complementary nature – there is something unique to man and unique to woman and it takes those two things to complement each other. You can’t make a connection with two screws. It takes a screw and a nut! (shouting).”

To top it off, this sermon was titled “You’ve Got To Fight To Be Free”. Why bother trying to put a ‘spin’ on a topic. Come right out with your hate, fear, and 1600-era’s morals and slap them onto a crowd in a place of worship. Yeah!

Tweaking the righties.

Fun and fun. I’m having a nice exchange over on Jay Reding’s blog. It really does amaze me that people still think Bush’s position of pre-emption is a good and current policy.
Jay trotted out the old argument “Oh, so you think the Iraqi people would be better off under Saddam, eh?”
This argument is getting so old now. We’ll never know now, will we? Since Bush decided to level the country to rubble and put us in a totally untenable situation.
Do I think they’d be better off than the current situation? I don’t know, it’s pretty bad. Do I think there were better ways of doing it than Bush’s ‘shoot now, make plans later’ scenario? Absofuckinglutely.
Reinforces my latest summary of US politics:

    Liberals think, then act.
    Conservatives act, then justify.

Think about that a bit, and you’ll find it applies to just about every Left vs Right argument going on, particularly as it applies to foreign policy.

Declaration of Repudiation

I sat down and read the Declaration of Independence document that Adam Shostack posted on Emergent Chaos. It’s a fascinating document, and I don’t believe I’ve ever read it straight through beginning to end.
Along those lines, Will Frank has created the Declaration of Repudiation, which summarizes, ala the Declaration of Independence, the injustices performed by our government over the last 5 years.
A wonderful piece of work.

Words from the Right, how blind they are.

I enjoy listening to America Right on XM radio. It’s populated by the more rabid, but well spoken of the right wing pundits (folks like Michael Medved and Laura Abraham), but it brings into focus where the right is, and what they’re thinking. It helps me get perspective on my own positions in politics, and how they relate to the rest of the world.
For balance, I also listen to Air America Radio. There’s some wonderful commentary there, and well stated positions that for the most part I agree with, but I have to admit – though Al Franken is a helluva writer, and I love his views, he’s boring as dirt to listen to in free-form commentary. He just doesn’t have the pace needed to keep folks latched onto the conversation.
At any rate, America Right had Medved prattling on as he does, and banging the drum in his usual tunnel-vision way. He was taking a series of callers on the topic of the Iraq war, and caller after caller kept commenting “The democrats and the left just whine and complain no matter what! Why don’t they come up with a concrete solution to win the war, instead of just bashing the right personally, and saying what a bad idea it was! What have they come up with? Nothing! Not a single concrete plan to win the war on terrorism”. Medved, predictably, kept the rah-rah’s going, with “You said it!” supportive chitchat.
What boggles me about this is… well, it’s missing the point. Of course there’s a lot of complaining about the war. It was unjustified, pigheaded, and disasterously executed. At the moment absolutely NO ONE, not on the right, nor on the left, has a plan to get out of it with anything approaching dignity or sanity, and cut right to the chase, the ‘war’ is completely, directly unwinnable.
“Unwinnable?!” you cry? Yes, unwinnable. The president has stated we are in the middle of a “War on terrorism”. You can’t declare war on a concept or an idea. Terrorist tactics have been around since the dawn of conflict, and will continue long after Bush has planted this country’s reputation in the toilet (oops, too late). No matter how much money is spent, no matter how many troops die, no matter how many countries are invaded, you can never ‘win a war on terrorism’. What exactly are the terms of victory? We kill every last terrorist? Okay. Define for me who a terrorist is, and we’ll line ’em up and shoot them. Gosh, that may make some other people unhappy, and they may consider bombing one of our embassies. Okay, they’re terrorists too, kill them as well. See where this is going?
The right is doing a wonderful job of whitewashing the public about the ‘whining democrats’, while still avoiding the main issue. Bush has no clue what he’s doing, or how to get out of what he’s created. He’s spending a billion dollars a day fighting something he created, with no plan for an end. In fact, when confronted with this seemingly no-win scenario, his number one answer, his prime defense is “Stick it out. Don’t give up now. We’ll win in the end.”
The cold clear facts here are that we are in an unwinnable war. A war of Bush’s creation, and his only. The reasons for going to war were thin at best, and now things are worse.
The only answer here is for Bush to take 30cc’s of humility and admit “okay, there were no WMD’s. There is no tie between Iraq and 9/11. Maybe this was a bad idea, and I’m not sure how to get out of it. Help?”
Fat chance of that, eh? In the meantime, servicemen are dying or being maimed on a daily basis. And can anyone tell me…

Man grabs girls arm, now he’s a sex offender.

Chicago Sun-Times article…

While acknowledging it might be “unfair for [Barnaby] to suffer the stigmatization of being labeled a sex offender when his crime was not sexually motivated,” the court said his actions are the type that are “often a precursor” to a child being abducted or molested.

Apparently now, it’s not a matter of committing a crime, nor a matter of planning to commit a crime, but now if you behave loosely like someone else who MIGHT commit a crime, you are now guilty of that crime.
The court system marches on, and more and more civil liberties are lost. What was lost here? The man did nothing wrong, and now he is labelled as a sex offender, and has to broadcast to everyone that he is a sex offender. Do you think the reactionary mobs who like to pillory ‘sex offenders in the neighborhood’ are going to read about the details of this man’s case before throwing bricks through his window? I doubt it.

No greater damnation…

… than a man’s own words.
These are the words of Karl Rove, at a New York Conservative Party get-together. There’s nothing that makes me more nauseous, or underlines the horror that the conservative party represents in our government, than this man’s characterization of Liberalism vs Conservatism.

Conservatives believe in lower taxes; liberals believe in higher taxes. We want few regulations; they want more. Conservatives measure the effectiveness of government programs by results; liberals measure the effectiveness of government programs by inputs. We believe in curbing the size of government; they believe in expanding the size of government. Conservatives believe in making America a less litigious society; liberals believe in making America a more litigious society. We believe in accountability and parental choice in education; they don’t. Conservatives believe in advancing what Pope John Paul II called a “culture of life”; liberals believe there is an absolute unlimited right to abortion.
But perhaps the most important difference between conservatives and liberals can be found in the area of national security. Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers. In the wake of 9/11, conservatives believed it was time to unleash the might and power of the United States military against the Taliban; in the wake of 9/11, liberals believed it was time to… submit a petition. I am not joking. Submitting a petition is precisely what Moveon.org did. It was a petition imploring the powers that be” to “use moderation and restraint in responding to the… terrorist attacks against the United States.”
I don’t know about you, but moderation and restraint is not what I felt as I watched the Twin Towers crumble to the earth; a side of the Pentagon destroyed; and almost 3,000 of our fellow citizens perish in flames and rubble.
Moderation and restraint is not what I felt – and moderation and restraint is not what was called for. It was a moment to summon our national will – and to brandish steel.
MoveOn.Org, Michael Moore and Howard Dean may not have agreed with this, but the American people did. Conservatives saw what happened to us on 9/11 and said: we will defeat our enemies. Liberals saw what happened to us and said: we must understand our enemies. Conservatives see the United States as a great nation engaged in a noble cause; liberals see the United States and they see … Nazi concentration camps, Soviet gulags, and the killing fields of Cambodia.
Has there been a more revealing moment this year than when Democratic Senator Richard Durbin, speaking on the Senate floor, compared what Americans had done to prisoners in our control at Guantanamo Bay with what was done by Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot – three of the most brutal and malevolent figures in the 20th century?
Let me put this in fairly simple terms: Al Jazeera now broadcasts to the region the words of Senator Durbin, certainly putting America’s men and women in uniform in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals.

Some slightly good news

From the ACLU :

Late Wednesday afternoon, the House of Representatives took perhaps the most significant vote in the nearly four year debate over the USA PATRIOT Act. They voted 238 to 187 to amend the CJS spending bill by exempting libraries and bookstores from the scope of foreign intelligence records demands under Section 215 of the Patriot Act.

A small step forward.

National Academies Sets up pro-evolution website

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The National Academies, the flagship of U.S. science, said on Friday it had set up a Web site to battle attempts to portray evolution as mere speculation about how life developed on Earth.
The Web site, http:/nationalacademies.org/evolution/, carries links to various reports on evolution, which some U.S. religious groups want to be taught in schools only if their own views of a divine creator get equal credence.
(Via Reuters, thanks to Keyne).

It amazes me…

… how so many people who…

  • did not sit on the 14 weeks of evidence presentation…
  • have never met, seen, talked to, or interviewed the parties involved…
  • have never had one day of legal schooling…
  • were not in the jury…
  • in fact, have not seen anything of the evidence other than what has been filtered through chat boards, CNN, and the rest of the ‘media’

…can decide, point blank, the guilt or innocence of a man in a court case.
Is it so hard for people to say “I do not have enough information to be able to say one way or the other. I wasn’t there.”?
Because, for 99.9% of the people shouting at the top of their lungs about miscarriages of justice, or whatever, that’s exactly the situation they’re in.

A view of Iraq

From MSNBC, Newsweek’s Baghdad bureau chief Rob Nordlund is leaving his post there, and has some choice commentary. (Linked to from DailyKos).
Living and working in Iraq, it’s hard not to succumb to despair. At last count America has pumped at least $7 billion into reconstruction projects, with little to show for it but the hostility of ordinary Iraqis, who still have an 18 percent unemployment rate. Most of the cash goes to U.S. contractors who spend much of it on personal security. Basic services like electricity, water and sewers still aren’t up to prewar levels. Electricity is especially vital in a country where summer temperatures commonly reach 125 degrees Fahrenheit. Yet only 15 percent of Iraqis have reliable electrical service. In the capital, where it counts most, it’s only 4 percent.
The most powerful army in human history can’t even protect a two-mile stretch of road. The Airport Highway connects both the international airport and Baghdad’s main American military base, Camp Victory, to the city center. At night U.S. troops secure the road for the use of dignitaries; they close it to traffic and shoot at any unauthorized vehicles. More troops and more helicopters could help make the whole country safer. Instead the Pentagon has been drawing down the number of helicopters. And America never deployed nearly enough soldiers. They couldn’t stop the orgy of looting that followed Saddam’s fall. Now their primary mission is self-defense at any cost—which only deepens Iraqis’ resentment.
The four-square-mile Green Zone, the one place in Baghdad where foreigners are reasonably safe, could be a showcase of American values and abilities. Instead the American enclave is a trash-strewn wasteland of Mad Max-style fortifications. The traffic lights don’t work because no one has bothered to fix them. The garbage rarely gets collected. Some of the worst ambassadors in U.S. history are the GIs at the Green Zone’s checkpoints. They’ve repeatedly punched Iraqi ministers, accidentally shot at visiting dignitaries and behave (even on good days) with all the courtesy of nightclub bouncers—to Americans and Iraqis alike. Not that U.S. soldiers in Iraq have much to smile about. They’re overworked, much ignored on the home front and widely despised in Iraq, with little to look forward to but the distant end of their tours—and in most cases, another tour soon to follow. Many are reservists who, when they get home, often face the wreckage of careers and family.
I can’t say how it will end. Iraq now has an elected government, popular at least among Shiites and Kurds, who give it strong approval ratings. There’s even some hope that the Sunni minority will join the constitutional process. Iraqi security forces continue to get better trained and equipped. But Iraqis have such a long way to go, and there are so many ways for things to get even worse. I’m not one of those who think America should pull out immediately. There’s no real choice but to stay, probably for many years to come. The question isn’t “When will America pull out?”; it’s “How bad a mess can we afford to leave behind?” All I can say is this: last one out, please turn on the lights.

Psychedelic Republicans!

The latest in the Collectible Cardgame craze!

That’s right – your world is finally complete! It’s amazing wacky fun time with all-new Psychedelic RepublicansTM trading cards! Collect them all, and gaze on in helpless, pupil-dilating wonder as your favorite C-SPAN stars morph into groovy explosions of technicolor conservatism!


‘Downing Street’ War Memo

During the runup to the british election, a memo was referenced repeatedly referring to documents detailing a series of high intelligence meetings between british intelligence (MI6) and the Administration in 2002:

the documents help prove that the leaders made a secret decision to oust Iraqi President Saddam Hussein nearly a year before launching their attack, shaped intelligence to that aim and never seriously intended to avert the war through diplomacy.

In the non-bushy circles, such a cry is frequently dismissed with a “Yes yes, we’ve heard this over and over again, but there’s no proof, go away. Who cares.” These sort of documents do in fact document how much Bush has lied to the world and the American public about his motivations and his planning.
What’s been most appalling is the lack of attention this document has gotten. House democrats wrote to Bush on May 6th:

In a letter to President Bush on May 6, 89 House Democrats expressed shock over the documents. They asked whether they proved that the White House had agreed to invade Iraq months before seeking Congress’ approval

Both Bush and Blair have denied that a decision on war was made in 2002, and maintain that they were preparing for military operations only as an option. A Blair spokesman said the report added nothing significant to the record of the run-up to the war.

Broadcast Flag struck down

As reported on Boingboing and sites everywhere, today…

This morning, the DC Circuit of the US Court of Appeals struck down the loathsome Broadcast Flag, ruling that the FCC does not have the jurisdiction to regulate what people do with TV shows after they’ve received them.

This is outstanding news. Means the schmucks who tried to kill digital video recorders just like they tried ot nix VCRs back in the days lost big time, and projects like Myth TV shall continue.