A blog from a gentleman of the Liberal political persuasion dedicated to right reason, clear thinking, cogent argument, and the public good.
I have returned from darkness and quiet. I used to style myself as "Joe Claus", Santa Claus’ younger brother because that is what I still look like. I wrote my heart out about liberal politics until June of 2006, when all that could be said had been said. I wrote until I could write no more and I wrote what I best liked to read when I was young and hopeful: the short familiar essays in Engish and American periodicals of 50 to 100 years ago. The archetype of them were those of G.K. Chesterton, written in newspapers and gathered into numerous small books. I am ready to write them again. I am ready to write about life as seen by the impoverished, by the mentally ill, by the thirty years and more of American Buddhist converts, and by the sharp eyed people [so few now in number] with the watcher's disease, the people who watch and watch and watch. I am all of these.
WASHINGTON -- The Army has concluded that 27 of the detainees who died in US custody in Iraq or Afghanistan since 2002 were the victims of homicide or suspected homicide, military officials said in a report released yesterday. The number is higher than Pentagon officials have previously acknowledged, and it indicates that criminal acts caused a significant portion of the dozens of prisoner deaths that occurred in US custody.
Thus far, the Army has found sufficient evidence to support charges against 21 soldiers in 11 cases on offenses that include murder, negligent homicide, and assault, according to the report released yesterday by the Army Criminal Investigation Command. The other completed investigations involve personnel from the Navy, other government agencies, and foreign armies, and the cases have been turned over to them for possible action.
Overruling recommendations by its own investigators, the Army has decided not to prosecute 17 soldiers implicated in the deaths of three prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2003 and 2004, The New York Times reported today. Army investigators had recommended that all 17 soldiers be charged in those cases, the newspaper said. While none will face any prosecution, one received a letter of reprimand and another was discharged after the investigations.
But notice the phrase ‘necessary murder’. It could only be written by a person to whom murder is at most a word. Personally I would not speak so lightly of murder. It so happens that I have seen the bodies of numbers of murdered men—I don’t mean killed in battle, I mean murdered. Therefore I have some conception of what murder means—the terror, the hatred, the howling relatives, the post-mortems, the blood, the smells.....Mr Auden’s brand of amoralism is only possible, if you are the kind of person who is always somewhere else when the trigger is pulled.
There needs to be an honest discussion of the Patriot Act and beyond. We need a renewed bill of rights for citizens carving in stone once again the limits of government power. Sadly though, the looniness of the left and the "Hitler" rhetoric diminishes the credibility of principle opposition necessary to conduct the debate. This isn't your fault of course, but the onus will be on rational persons like you to provide a leveling influence on your brethern.
P.S. I'd torture the hell out of those genocidal maniacs in Abu Ghraib!
You cannot have a political party that is not based upon a class interest. It has been part of the American propaganda machine that we have no class system. This isn't true. We have a very strong, very rigid class structure which goes back to the beginning of the country....What is the Republican Party? Well, it used to be the party of the small-town businessman, generally in the Middle West, generally sort of out of the mainstream. Very conservative. It now represents nothing but the gas and oil business. They own it....
Once you can send somebody off and put them in the brig of a ship in Charleston Harbor and hold them as long as you like uncharged, you have destroyed the United States and its Constitution.....The media played a role in transforming citizens into spectators of this process....They are no longer citizens. They are hardly voters. They are consumers, and they consume those things which are advertised on television....the press just follows this. It observes what those in power want it to observe, and turns the other way when things get dark. Then, when it's too late sometimes, you get some very good reporting. But by then, somebody's playing taps.
When I was sworn in as the governor of Texas I took an oath of office to uphold the laws of our state, including the death penalty. My responsibility is to ensure our laws are enforced fairly and evenly without preference or special treatment.....Like many touched by this case, I have sought guidance through prayer. I have concluded judgment about the heart and soul of an individual on death row are best left to a higher authority.
Karla Faye Tucker has acknowledged she is guilty of a horrible crime. She was convicted and sentenced by a jury of her peers. The role of the state is to enforce our laws and to make sure all individuals are treated fairly under those laws. The state must make sure each individual sentenced to death has opportunity for access to the court and a thorough legal review. The courts, including the United States Supreme Court, have reviewed the legal issues in this case, and therefore I will not grant a 30-day stay.
May God bless Karla Faye Tucker and may God bless her victims and their families.
To a nation still nursing a broken heart for what happened here in 2001 and especially those who found themselves closest to the events of Sept. 11; to our soldiers in dangerous places; to those who have endured the tsunami and to all who have suffered natural disasters and who must find the will to rebuild; to the oppressed and to those whose lot it is to struggle, in financial hardship or in failing health; to my fellow journalists in places where reporting the truth means risking all; and to each of you. Courage. For the CBS Evening News, Dan Rather reporting.
All frame houses. Streets were unpaved. But this was not unusual. This was the 1930s. My father had a job in the Depression, which was a precious thing. He was a pipe-liner, which meant that he dug ditches along which they could lay pipe. I can remember any number of times, I'd get a block and a half away, and if I didn't behave myself, before I got home, my mother knew about it.
But the radio was my escape. The great war, World War II, was exploding. The Ed Murrows, the Charles Collingwoods, the Richard C. Hottelets — the great legends of CBS became very real to me. People in radio were great describers. A picture sometimes is worth 1,000 words. But sometimes a word, the right word, is worth 1,000 pictures. I knew that from listening to radio.
By getting work, beginning at 14, in and around oil fields and pipe gangs, I built my strength up fairly quickly...
I was gape-mouthed and bug-eyed most of the time about what I was seeing. People would come out of, seemingly, out of the woodwork or out of the shrubbery, and hit people with clubs. Particularly, cameramen were sometimes beaten. In place after place, we were spat upon by the worst elements of the community and called the 'Colored Broadcasting System.'