Saturday, June 6, 2009

Richard Lugar - A Thinking Republican

Republican Senator, Richard Lugar, the ranking Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee commented positively on President Obama's speech in Cairo. Unlike many of his fellow GOP members, Lugar, in an interview on Bloomberg TV used his head not his partisanship, when he stated that Obama's speech was a "signal achievement."

These days most GOP Congressmen and Senators, along with their followers at FOX TV and the bombastic buffoons on talk radio work mostly out of context and feel that they are showing weakness if they say anything positive about the other side. Maybe that is the case...or maybe they simply are not smart enough to know better. Whatever the case, at least there are a few statesmanlike members still around with enough courage and sense to say what is right.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Bring Your Guns To Church, Boys

Pistol Packin' Pastor, Ken Pagano, of the New Bethel Church in Louisville, KY, has invited his flock to bring their guns to church on June 27 to celebrate July 4...and the Second Amendment. According to the Rev. Pagano (If I should be so bold as to address him in that way.), "...there was a strong belief in God and firearms..." among the founding fathers. An ad for the event says "there will be a handgun raffle, patriotic music and information on gun safety." They are going to give away a handgun at church. Do you hear me? They are going to give away a handgun at church! Oh, yes and "area gun store/firing range owners will be invited to attend and tell about their services." What kind of services do they hold, do you suppose? People, they are going to sell guns at church!

New Bethel is an Assemblies of God affiliated church. Its website states that the church's vision is "To build a fully functioning Christian community. That is Bible-based, Christ-centered, Spirit-certified, and culturally aware." I suppose they should add "and pistol toting." When they make the change, they might work on complete sentences as well.

This has to be one of the most ludicrous, openly political church services that I have encountered. A celebration of the the Second Amendment? Exactly what does Christianity have to do with carrying guns? Yes, the good pastor has equated guns and God, and as we all know, according to fundamentalist Christians, all the founding fathers were devout Christians, who wrote the Constitution solely with God in mind. Therefore, God must love guns too. I'm also sure that the Bible refers to guns and their value to Christianity because Lagano says he may refer to some Bible passages.

In light of the recent church shootings I would think that most congregations would want to keep guns as far away from their churches as possible. I can't help but remember my childhood, when my mother and grandmother were scandalized because they heard a gunshot on Sunday. Guns were not supposed to be fired on Sunday. It was a day of worship, when one should be quiet and reflective. My, how times have changed. To paraphrase an old Johnny Cash song, "lets take our guns to church, son, let's take our guns to church."

...visitor, that pew has been in my family for 100 years, and you ain't gonna take it away! You hear me, you lily livered coward? I'm a givin' you five seconds to get off that bench or I'm a gonna pull leather!

...whaddya mean you don't think that much money ought to be spent on a new organ? We've needed a new one for years. Oh yeah? Well my Glock does my talkin' for me! You'd better change yore tune or there'll be a new treasurer in this church in the morning. Say your prayers, brother!

Cheney Blames 911 on Richard Clarke???? What's Next?

This is a clip from The Daily Show calling out Cheney on his most recent comments, blaming 911 on Richard Clarke. This man is so far out in right field now, that it isn't funny anymore.

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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Georgia's Fraudulent Voter Scanning Program - Part Deux

A couple of posts ago I addressed the Justice Department's ruling that Georgia's program to scan voter lists for ineligible voters was flawed, because it flagged thousands of eligible voters. Now, Dirk, one of my fellow Georgia bloggers and a nice guy, has put a right wing spin on this ruling to make it appear that the door has been opened for voter fraud, and as I predicted in my post, the fraudulent Republican use of Acorn has reared its head.

All this ruling says is that the program is flawed. It is not a court ruling. All Georgia's Secretary of State has to do is fix it, so that it does what it is supposed to do. Of course the Secretary of State is a Republican, who is running for Governor. She is not about to fix it because it makes for good propaganda. After all she has fooled Dirk and his readers, so she can fool the rest of Republican Georgia.

As I wrote earlier this program was begun prior to last year's election and was specifically programmed to target black and Hispanic eligible voters to ensure that many would be turned away from the polls, since many or most would vote Democratic. Georgia requires a valid picture ID at the polls. It is doubtful that many ineligible voters would have been able to vote anyway as a result. I'm sure that the argument to this would be that they have fake licenses. If my local sheriff's report is any indication, I'd say that this argument would be false. Each week there are numbers of Hispanics who are charged with driving without a license.

There are no statistics to support any accusations of voter fraud, certainly not from illegal aliens. This is simply a Don Quixote windmill fight by the extreme right, which wants to ensure that the voter lists are trimmed of opposing voters and to whip up anti-immigrant feelings and fears.

A couple of people have commented on Dirk's post at this writing. To show how easily people can be fooled check out Dirk's post and read the sadly uninformed comments. One even advances a far fetched prediction that a terrorist organization could run a candidate and bring in illegals to throw the election. In extremely right wing Georgia it would take millions of those illegals to throw an election, but I suppose if your imagination and fear run wild, you could believe such a fantasy.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Betty Explains Bible-Based Marriage

Betty, America's Best Christian, at the No Sin Zone has gone to great lengths to explain traditional marriage with the help of the Bible.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Georgia Republican Voter Verification Scam

Last year the GA Secretary of State, Karen Handel created a voter verification program whereby the State voter lists would be scanned to detect non-citizen voters. Of course it was put in place prior to last fall's election and was also planned to remove eligible voters from the voter lists.

Secretary of State Handel, an announced Republican candidate for governor, last year asked for a quick review of the program by the Bush Justice Department. This was of course designed to put the stamp of approval prior to the election. Unfortunately, for Handel and the Republicans, the Obama Justice Department was left to hand down a decision. Presumably, the Bush Justice Department was too busy hiding its torture approval and federal judge meddling to get to Georgia's program in time.

Now the current Justice Department has stated that the program is discriminatory, stating in part:

We have considered the accuracy of the state’s verification process. Our analysis shows that the state’s process does not produce accurate and reliable information and that thousands of citizens who are in fact eligible to vote under Georgia law have been flagged….

An error as simple as transposition of one digit of a driver[s] license can lead to an erroneous notation of a non-match…..

….Although the state has not provided data on the racial and language minority characteristics of all registrants whose applications went through the verification process, we have been able to compare the composition of those persons whom the state has flagged for further inquiry because of a non-match with both the composition of newly registered voters in the state and the composition of existing registered voters….

[A]pplicants who are Hispanic, Asian or African-American are more likely than white applicants, to statistically significant degrees, to be flagged for additional scrutiny.

Handel, of course, being a running candidate, was quick to say that this is politics and to throw out the old Acorn bait. This will play well with Georgia's racist Republican base, which is a majority at the moment. I am sure that this will become an issue in the next election as Republicans cry voter fraud and bring in Acorn as a whipping boy.

At the moment it appears that most of Georgia's voter fraud is centered in the Secretary of State's office. Whether, Handel is another Katherine Harris remains to be seen. She has been pretty much seen and not heard to this point. I'm sure we will hear more from her over the coming months. Hopefully, she will not be as embarrassing or extreme as Harris, but Georgia Republicans can be embarrassing and extreme.

Operation Rescue Condones Anti-abortion Terrorism

Operation "Rescue" leader, Randall Terry said the following about the murder of Dr. George Tiller:

"George Tiller was a mass-murderer. We grieve for him that he did not have time to properly prepare his soul to face God. I am more concerned that the Obama Administration will use Tiller's killing to intimidate pro-lifers into surrendering our most effective rhetoric and actions. Abortion is still murder. And we still must call abortion by its proper name; murder.

Those men and women who slaughter the unborn are murderers according to the Law of God. We must continue to expose them in our communities and peacefully protest them at their offices and homes, and yes, even their churches."

What does he mean by "intimidating pro-lifers into surrendering our most effect rhetoric and actions?" Do their "actions" include murder? It appears so. This man and his organization approve of Dr. Tiller's murder, yet he calls abortion murder and says it is wrong. His brain is so addled with hatred that he speaks easily out of both sides of his mouth.

If Operation Rescue's "rhetoric and actions" are illegal as they are most of the time, then they should be "surrendered." I would hope that the FBI investigates this group as a domestic terrorism organization to see if there are connections between it and the murder. Of course any investigation would be condemned by the Fat Blowhard, Limbaugh, and his minions as a witch hunt against the right wing by the Obama Administration.

I would not be surprised to see more of this terrorism in the near future as the far right steps up its anti-abortion rhetoric and seeks to undermine the current administration. If they cannot get their wish that Arab terrorists attack, then they will attack from within through killings such as this most recent. Do not be surprised to see the bombing of clinics resume. I would not be at all surprised to see at least one suicide bombing in our future. These people are rabid and unbalanced.

Let me add as a footnote that I do not endorse the late term abortions in which Dr. Tiller specialized, unless there are complications which make an abortion necessary.