Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann (R-MN), head of the Tea Party Caucus in Congress, constantly dismisses charges about racism roiling within the ranks of the Tea Party, despite her fingerprints frequently appearing on racism-tinged stink bombs.
For example, Tea Party starlet Bachmann denies charges that racism is embedded in her demand made during a September Capitol Hill press conference for halting the long delayed $1.2-billion court-approved settlement to black farmers for documented discrimination by the US Agriculture Department.
Bachmann called for holding up that settlement, already stalled by US Senate Republicans, until a federal investigation examines her poorly substantiated claim of “massive and widespread fraud” in that pending settlement.
Bachmann’s name appears a few times in “Tea Party Nationalism,” the extensive report released recently examining Tea Party activities around America that documents the leadership roles of individuals in the tea-bag movement who also hold leadership posts in fringe organizations including anti-immigrant, pro-Nazi and white supremacist groups.
The government they devised was defective from the start, requiring several amendments, a civil war, and major social transformations to attain the system of constitutional government and its respect for the freedoms and individual rights we hold as fundamental today.
– Thurgood Marshall on the bi-centennial of the Constitution, 1987
On Saturday, October 9th at 7:31 in the morning, Virginia Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, picked up her phone and dialed Anita Hill’s Brandeis University office phone and left a taped message asking Professor Hill to pray and, then, apologize and explain “why you did what you did with my husband.”
Mrs. Thomas later described her call as an “olive branch.” Hill saw it differently and called the campus police and the FBI.
The phone call led to a front-page story in The New York Times and stories in other papers and on the web. It raised many questions as to why Mrs. Thomas did what she did. It also resurrected the sordid controversy of her husband’s appointment to the US Supreme Court.
So in August I went back to Wisconsin, which was glowing green under a brown cloud of mosquitos. Lotta water this past summer, and the most mosquitos since, oh maybe 1965, which is when the Schmoes first played in public at the ninth grade Halloween dance at Van Hise Junior High in Madison. We were called the Misfits then, and have been through a few name changes and personnel adjustments, but it’s basically the same five guys playing the same three chords for 45 years. After performing at our high school reunion party (Class of ’69) every five years over the decades, we figured, “Who knows these three chords better than we do? Isn’t it time we recorded an album?”
And we did. Three Schmoes (Bo Bally Schmoe, Timmy Schmoe and me, Chuck E. Schmoe) came back to Wisconsin, and joined the two Schmoes (Stevie Schmoe and Eddie Schmoe) who were still living there, and we recorded a whole album guided by the same light that has always illuminated our aesthetic path: No Good Songs Have Been Written Since We Went Through Puberty. I mean, why write new songs when Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs already wrote all the good ones?
The Schmoes on their new (and first) album cover
The American Revolution, for all the pious talk about freedom and the Rights of Man, was at bottom simply a matter of people not wanting to pay their taxes. It was about rank self interest, and it was a powerful movement.
That rank self-interest could spark a new revolution–hopefully one that will still also advance the cause of freedom and the Rights of Man.
Two issues are rushing to the fore that could have most Americans grabbing pitchforks, guns, shovels, bats, mop handles, and whatever else they have handy that could be useful in the streets.
Two of my oldest and dearest friends in life are unemployed and suffering – facing full-blown collapse monetarily and mentally.
Both have graduate degrees, multiple skills, commendable work records and zero job search success despite diligently scouring every source available during the past two years.
Oh, another important factor in the equation of my friends’ exile from employment ranks. Both friends are over fifty, a seeming Bestial Mark during this era when brazen age discrimination trumps traditional discrimination based on race, gender and disability.
Amplifying the anguish my friends harbor already from feeling their joblessness is somehow their fault are increasing reports that employers are refusing to hire unemployed people, citing their jobless status as evidence of their worthlessness as employees.
There may be job fairs, but there are no jobs. Is that fair?
Employers, according to recent media reports, manufacture myths about the jobless, such as the jobless are unemployed due to poor work performance or that the currently employed are more current in needed proficiencies.
One friend’s downsizing had nothing to do with poor performance and that friend avoided layoff-induced “obsolescence” by returning to college and taking training for additional skills.
Psychoanalysis enables us to point to some trace or other
of a homosexual object-choice in everyone. … It can be traced
back to the constitutional bisexuality of all human beings.
If Sigmund Freud is right that all humans are “innately bisexual” and if Alfred Kinsey’s research is right that all humans fall somewhere on a bisexual continuum – then it’s clear the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy is a matter, pure and simple, of un-Constitutional repression.
I realize I may not have a very developed appreciation for the nuances of bureaucracy and government. But if one values honesty over repression, this policy just doesn’t make sense.
Alexander The Great, one of the greatest military leaders in history, swung both ways. Lawrence of Arabia was the homosexual military genius instrumental in forming the Sunni-ruled Iraq we invaded and turned upside down in 2003.
President Obama, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen all say they are ready to repeal the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy put into law 17 years ago.
The House passed a repeal law in May by a wide margin. The Senate was expected to follow suit, but last month the bill was defeated.
“The whole thing is a political train wreck,” Richard Socarides, a gay rights advocate from the Clinton administration, told the Associate Press after the Senate loss.
But even if it had passed into law, effective repeal was still up to the military. A “trigger” amendment tacked to the bill would have allowed the top brass to drag their feet on repeal or veto it indefinitely.
Nationally noted activist/educator Dr. Walter D. Palmer, founder of an innovative charter school in Philadelphia, is in a historic battle with Philadelphia School District officials which could impact charters across Pennsylvania as well as the current debates nationwide over reforming public education.
At issue is the failure of Philadelphia district officials to provide $1.7-million in funds for the high school at Palmer’s charter–money that he says prior school district officials approved but never delivered.
District officials counter that the Walter D. Palmer Leadership Learning Charter School, before launching its high school, never obtained formal approval from the School Reform Commission. As a consequence, they claim the school district owes the school nothing.
The SRC is a state government created and controlled entity that oversees public schools in Philadelphia including the 74 charters operating in that city.
If Palmer looses this battle, now being fought out in Pennsylvania’s appellate Commonwealth Court, it could bankrupt the school he opened in 2000, shuttering the impressive multi-million new building opened a few years ago in an impoverished section of North Philadelphia.
A win for the Palmer School enables charter schools in Philadelphia and statewide to increase enrollments.
Candidate Barack Obama, running for president, vowed to end the ludicrous Pentagon policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which, since it was established in 1993 by President Clinton has required gay and lesbian members of the uniformed services to hide their sexual orientation or be drummed out of the service.
In 2009, just installed in the White House, President Obama reiterated that the policy “doesn’t contribute to our national security.”
But now that a federal judge has ruled the policy to be unconstitutional, and has more recently issued an injunction barring the Pentagon from enforcing it, the president has responded not by deciding to let the court order stand, thus ending this particular form of discrimination against gays and lesbians, but rather by appealing the decision in an attempt to reverse it.
This is a case of the President/Commander-in-Chief following his own pathetic political policy of “Don’t Act, Don’t Lead.”
There are calls in this election season for establishing a moratorium of some sort on home foreclosures, and a number of large banks have even voluntarily stopped, at least until after Election Day, on foreclosing on houses. That’s fine as far as it goes, but what about the millions of homes that have already been lost or stolen over the past several years?
Behind the talk of a legal moratorium on foreclosures, and the voluntary pause announced by some banks, lies the reality that many if not most of the mortgages in question are legally dubious. The homeowner getting a foreclosure notice frequently has no idea who the actual holder or holders of a mortgage may be, and banks that are trying to foreclose often themselves have no idea who actually holds title to the papers. This is because with the securitization of mortgages, they have been traded and re-traded, and often have even been diced up into pieces of mortgage-backed securities, so that the paper trail of ownership has been lost, perhaps irrevocably.
Homes foreclosed upon through fraudulent document should be recovered from criminal banks
In some cases and some jurisdictions, federal bankruptcy courts have been tossing out foreclosure cases, saying that the foreclosing bank has no proof of ownership of the mortgage and thus cannot claim the property. It’s a little like the person who is caught speeding and shows up in court to contest the charge only to have it tossed out because the ticketing officer didn’t show up in court to make her or his case.
Anyone who claims that if you don’t know your history, you are doomed to relive it, is boring.
Anyone who claims that you are entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts is boring.
“Anyone dumb enough to wanna be in the military should be allowed in,” said the late great Bill Hicks. It was one of the few things he got wrong. Anyone dumb enough to wanna be in the military is too dumb to be trusted with a weapon. So getting gays into the military is not the issue. The issue is getting heterosexuals out of the military. They’re the ones who are shooting civilians for sport and taking trophies. Anyone who gets jazzed about equal rights for war criminals is boring.
As the Huffington Post gets bigger and bigger, it gets harder and harder to find the stuff that’s worth reading, unless you’re actually interested that Kim Kardashian bought a purse for $30,000.