Tuesday, May 13, 2008

For show patriotism

Starting with war resistance.  The May 2nd snapshot noted war resister Ryan Jackson who turned himself in and was waiting to find out what was next.  Courage to Resist reports: "War objector Army PFC Ryan Jackson was temporarily moved from his brig cell yesterday and arraigned at Fort Gordon, Georgia. Ryan was formally changed with multiple counts of AWOL stemming from his attempt to be released from the Army prior to Iraq deployment. He is scheduled to face a special court martial--with a maximum one year prison sentence--on Tuesday, June 3. Since voluntarily returning to Fort Gordon on April 14 and formally applying for a conscientious objector discharge, Ryan has been held in pre-trial confinement at the Charleston Navel Brig. Write to Ryan | Donate to Ryan's defense | Attend Ryan's court martial."
That's the US, in Canada, war resisters are hoping the Parliament will take action on a motion waiting to be debated.   Currently, you can utilize the following e-mails to show your support: Prime Minister Stephen Harper (pm@pm.gc.ca -- that's pm at gc.ca) who is with the Conservative party and these two Liberals, Stephane Dion (Dion.S@parl.gc.ca -- that's Dion.S at parl.gc.ca) who is the leader of the Liberal Party and Maurizio Bevilacqua (Bevilacqua.M@parl.gc.ca -- that's Bevilacqua.M at parl.gc.ca) who is the Liberal Party's Critic for Citizenship and Immigration.  In addition Jack Layton, NDP leader, has a contact form and they would like to hear from people as well. A few more addresses can be found here at War Resisters Support Campaign. For those in the US, Courage to Resist has an online form that's very easy to use.         

There is a growing movement of resistance within the US military which includes Matt Mishler, Josh Randall, Robby Keller, Justiniano Rodrigues, Chuck Wiley, James Stepp, Rodney Watson, Michael Espinal, Matthew Lowell, Derek Hess, Diedra Cobb, Brad McCall, Justin Cliburn, Timothy Richard, Robert Weiss, Phil McDowell, Steve Yoczik, Ross Spears, Peter Brown, Bethany "Skylar" James, Zamesha Dominique, Chrisopther Scott Magaoay, Jared Hood, James Burmeister, Jose Vasquez, Eli Israel, Joshua Key, Ehren Watada, Terri Johnson, Clara Gomez, Luke Kamunen, Leif Kamunen, Leo Kamunen, Camilo Mejia, Kimberly Rivera, Dean Walcott, Linjamin Mull, Agustin Aguayo, Justin Colby, Marc Train, Abdullah Webster, Robert Zabala, Darrell Anderson, Kyle Snyder, Corey Glass, Jeremy Hinzman, Kevin Lee, Mark Wilkerson, Patrick Hart, Ricky Clousing, Ivan Brobeck, Aidan Delgado, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, Blake LeMoine, Clifton Hicks, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Logan Laituri, Jason Marek, Clifford Cornell, Joshua Despain, Joshua Casteel, Katherine Jashinski, Dale Bartell, Chris Teske, Matt Lowell, Jimmy Massey, Chris Capps, Tim Richard, Hart Viges, Michael Blake, Christopher Mogwai, Christian Kjar, Kyle Huwer, Wilfredo Torres, Michael Sudbury, Ghanim Khalil, Vincent La Volpa, DeShawn Reed and Kevin Benderman. In total, at least fifty US war resisters in Canada have applied for asylum.

Information on war resistance within the military can be found at The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline [(877) 447-4487], Iraq Veterans Against the War and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. In addition, VETWOW is an organization that assists those suffering from MST (Military Sexual Trauma).
[. . .]
Let's go to MTV "News" where Gil Kaufman is a certifiable idiot.  First he repeats Barack's claim that the US is "facing the largest homecoming since the Second World War."  When he needs a fact, he just makes it up and his MOANING THAT HE'S WEARING BLUE JEANS press pack, is too STUPID to say, "Hey, how man troops did the US deploy to Vietnam?"   Gil then decares that there is a "near-mathematical impossibility of her beating Obama for the nomination" -- what??????  Look, you're a reporter -- a bad one -- but a reporter.  When you don't know what you're talking about, you 'research' it (make phone calls).  Here's reality: neither Hillary or Barack will reach the magic number.  Unless one of them drops out, this could go to the convention.  If it does, there are no "pledged delegates."  Super delegates can change their minds at any time.  But, at the convention, pledged delegates make their own decisions.  As Big Tent Democrat (TalkLeft) observes, it's probably not a good idea for Barack's campaign to be applauding a pledged delegate to Hillary (Jack B. Johnson) who states he'll "support Obama at the August convention."   
Can Johnson, sent by the state (he's not a super delegate) to be a Hillary delegate, change his vote at the convention?  Absolutely.  And those of us who survived Miami in 1972 know very well that on the floor of the convention there are no promises.  George McGovern himself proved that as he stabbed women OVER AND OVER in the back and sent out a woman to try to explain his betrayals and justify them.  (Coward then, coward now: George McGovern.  See Rebecca's "george mcgovern, start worrying about the after-life.")  But Barack's campaign's applauding that.  Good.  Maybe it will make the press wake up to how STUPID they are.  There is no winner.  There will be no winner.  There is a set number that the nominee has to reach.  If no one reaches it and there's more than one standing, the issue is supposed to be resolved at the convention.  Translation, NO ONE HAS A LOCK on the nomination.  No one.  Now those old enough to remember past Democratic nominations decided on the convention floor could explain that but the elders went AWOL in the party sometime ago, mouthing meaningless patter about 'movement.'
Christopher Hayes (The Nation, gets a link because he's a nice guy) can't understand why the media notes Barack's religion by stating he 'says he's a Christian.'  Allow us to break it down for you.  Thus far, mainstream journalists have attempted to locate Barack's baptismal record.  Can't find it.  And a number with the church when Barack started showing up there say (to the press) it's due to the fact that Barack wasn't baptised.  What did he do May 4thWhat he always does.  On NBC's Meet The Press, he insisted he was "uh a Christian" and then went on to list what Wright had done for his family including baptizing Barack's children.  But where was Barack's baptism.  I know it's hard for a lot in Panhandle Media to grasp due to not being religious or not being part of a religion that requires baptism.  However, Barack says he's a Christian and says he's a member of a church.  The church and the faith requires those coming to the Lord to be baptiszed -- regardless of age.  Those changing churches can simply have their baptismal records forwarded (the church secretary takes care of that).  If someone's not grasping it, if Barack wasn't baptized -- and that is becoming the consensus in the press -- he's yet again misrepresented himself to the public.  He can try to fix it by claiming, "Well, I came to God on my own."  But he hasn't said that.  He's stated he's a Christian and stated that a church was his church.  Allowing people to believe he'd been baptized in that faith.  If he never was, he misrepresented and that will be one of the kinder things said about him.  And that is what will rally the religious right to the polls for John McCain in November.  If you don't grasp that, you don't grasp religion.   Here's Barack speaking to Tim Russert from Meet The Press' transcript (which leaves out the 'uh-uh's):
And, as a consequence, when Reverend Wright, who married me and baptized our, our children, when he made those statements, or I learned of those statements that I found so objectionable, I, I .
What's missing?  Barack saying Wright baptized him.  (Again, the press consensus is becoming that it never happened.)  He doesn't mention it in either of his books.  A grown man getting baptised, you'd assume he'd have an anecdote.  This would be an issue in the general election if he got the nomination.
His former pastor the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is an unreconstructed '60s radical, a fire-breathing disciple of James Cone's period-piece black liberation theology. Mr. Obama wrote in his 1995 autobiography, Dreams From My Father, about his attraction to the leftist pastor's church as a vehicle for social change. If black nationalism would uplift the race, he wrote, "then the hurt it might cause well-meaning whites, or the inner turmoil it caused people like me, would be of little consequence."         
That's a remarkable admission of a racialized "ends justify the means" morality. It helps explain why Mr. Obama was willing to stick with a crackpot like Dr. Wright. It also might explain why an up-and-coming Barack Obama found nothing particularly wrong with rubbing political elbows with Bill Ayers, the Chicago university professor and onetime fugitive member of the revolutionary, communist Weather Underground.    
You can use the link to read the entire piece.  If Barack wasn't baptised, the GOP attack will include that and it will effect voters (including some of Barack's core support because the word for many church goers -- of all races -- will be stronger than "fraud").  Meanwhile, Egalia (Tennessee Guerilla Women) notes, "So many women in the media have remained silent" during the non-stop sexist attacks on Hillary and post a clip of ABC's This Week where Cokie Roberts (who has called it out before during this election cycle) again pointed out the double standards.  Marie Cocco (link goes to Real Clear Politics -- Cocco is syndicated by the Washington Post) appears to write a burial for the Clinton campaign (it's not over, Marie) and finds her voice to speak out against some of the sexism (left out of the list are the writings at the website which reposts her for free).  It's a greatest hits of the most obvious.  Cocco notes: "I will not miss the deafening, depressing silence of Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean or other leading Democrats, who to my knowledge (with the exception of Sen. Barbara Mikulski of Maryland) haven't uttered a word of public outrage at the unrelenting, sex-based hate that has been hurled at a former first lady and two-term senator from New York."  Don't stop there, Marie.  As we all know Laura Flanders has defended Laura Bush, Condi Rice and countless other GOP women in print and over the radio when they were attacked for or discriminated against due to gender.  But the self-loathing lesbian Laura Flanders couldn't call it out.  And The Nation thought it was cute to print all those sexist attacks on Hillary, as did The Progressive, as did . . . The entire Panhandle Media.  This will not be forgotten.  And it's not hurting feminism, it only fuels greater strength. 
And just as the sexism will not be forgotten, the campaign isn't over.  Fernando Suarez (CBS News) quotes Hillary explaining, "West Virginia has a record of picking presidents.  West Virginia made it possible for President Kennedy to become president of the United States.  West Virginia in the general election votes for the winner and if West Virginia had voted for our Democratic nominee in 2000 and 2004 we wouldn't have had to put up with George Bush."  Yesterday 41 former South Dakota state legislators and Constitutional Officiaers endorsed Hillary. I guess they didn't hear that the race was over? Or maybe they weren't foolish enough to believe the spin. The race isn't over. There are two candidates left in the Democratic primary and they are in a dead-heat. Neither will finish the race with enough pledged delegates to be declared the winner or to declare themselves the winner. And while the Obama Groupies run to a largely compliant press yelling "Shut it down!" the people want it to continue. The new ABC News - Washington Post poll finds 64% want the race to play out. Read Elaine's "Debates" in context of the poll and realize how badly Panhandle Media failed America by refusing to call out Barack's refusal to debate.  Lindsay Levin (HillaryClinton.com) points out, "In the face of grim poll numbers, the Obama campaign has attempted to dismiss today's outcome despite the fact that Sen. Obama has outspent us on advertising, has more staff in the state, and more than double the number of offices.  He has also benifted from the support of the most high-profile endorses in West Virginia -- Sen. Jay Rockefeller and Congressman Nick Rahall.  By every measure, the Obama campaign has waged an aggressive campaign in the Mountain State.  Despite being the so-called 'presumptive nominee' and benefiting from these advantages, Sen. Obama has been unable to close a significant gap in the polls.  Sen. Clinton has already won Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and Michigan.  With a win in West Virginia, Sen. Clinton will have once again proven her greater ability to win in the key swing states."  Lastly Jake Tapper (ABC News) notes how no matter what happens in the Obama campaign, "It's never my fault!" is the cry of Barack.

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