Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Murtha Rules

Today Zogby poll has amazing results about the Iraq War.

Remember how Murtha was castigated for calling for a phased withdrawal from Iraq? Remember he was called a coward on the floor of the House by a lunatic freshman Republican? Remember even Democrats distancing themselves from his views (not hard to remember, since they are still doing it)?

Well, along comes Zogby with this finding:

"As the President delivers his annual State of the Union message, 55% of the voting public favors a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq, believing the U.S. has accomplished all it realistically can in the Middle Eastern nation."

That is exactly the Murtha position. It has gotten zero support from the opinion elites in Washington. Yet it is what the public believes. It also confirms another point Murtha made, that the public is way ahead of the politicians in this instance.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Power-Madness of King George - Is Bush turning America into an elective dictatorship? By Jacob�Weisberg

Jacob Weisberg has a great piece in Slate Magazine on the un-American power grab by the Bush Administration. Here's a illustrative quote:

The Power-Madness of King George - Is Bush turning America into an elective dictatorship? By Jacob�Weisberg: "This extremity of Bush's position emerges most clearly in a 42-page document issued by the Department of Justice last week. As Andrew Cohen, a CBS legal analyst, wrote in an online commentary, 'The first time you read the 'White Paper,' you feel like it is describing a foreign country guided by an unfamiliar constitution.' To develop this observation a bit further, the nation implied by the document would be an elective dictatorship, governed not by three counterpoised branches of government but by a secretive, possibly benign, awesomely powerful king. "

What's Your Sign?

Gotta love this one. This except is lifted directly from the Wall Street Journal's Evening Wrap that is sent out by email (emphasis added):

"Meanwhile, astrologists discovered a small planet circling a red-dwarf star 28,000 light years away from Earth, the smallest known planet not circling a dying neutron star. The discovery raises hopes of finding more Earth-like planets in the galaxy. And British scientists discovered the world's smallest known fish in an Indonesian peat swamp. A member of the carp family, the Paedocypris progenetica grows to just 7.9 millimeters (0.31 inches), a scale shorter than the 8 millimeters of the Indo-Pacific goby, the previous record-holder. "

I always knew that paper drew it's information from otherworldly sources, but I always thought that only happened on the editorial page.

The article was corrected on the web site. Bummer.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Theistic Evolution

Great post at the Daily Kos about Glenn Morton. See below:

Daily Kos: Know Your Creationists: Glenn Morton: "Glenn is an evangelical Christian who embraces a view called Theistic Evolution (TE). This is the faith based position that the universe, the solar system, the earth, and the history of life up to and including the evolution of anatomically modern humans from earlier primates, were created by God using processes created by same which humans can understand and explain to some degree through careful scientific investigation. In this view there is no contradiction possible even in principle between believing in a Creator and any valid facts gleaned from studying that Creation. "

This view is not particularly revolutionary, but is gratifying. This is consistent generally with Catholic teaching and particularly consistent with the view of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, the Jesuit scientist who saw evolution as an awesome part of God's plan. For him, science was a source of wonder that reaffirmed his faith, not a threat to it, as current creationists and intelligent design zealots see things.

I've blogged on Teilhard in the past. He's a man I deeply admire and by whom I am inspired.


So, here's Karl Rove opining on the differences between the parties:

Rove Offers Republicans A Battle Plan For Elections: "'At the core, we are
dealing with two parties that have fundamentally different views on national
security,' Rove said. 'Republicans have a post-9/11 worldview and many Democrats
have a pre-9/11 worldview. That doesn't make them unpatriotic -- not at all. But it does make them wrong -- deeply and profoundly and consistently

Remember the old definition of chutzpah, the kid who kills his parents then asks for mercy from the judge on the basis of he fact that he's an orphan.

Rove gives us a new definition. An Administration that was demonstrably wrong on weapons of mass distruction, wrong on the Al Qaeda connection, wrong on the attitude of the Iraqi people, wrong on the number troops needed for success. An Administration that is willing to shred the Constitution, violate the law, out a CIA agent, treat the rest of the world with contempt such that our image abroad is worse than during Vietnam. Wrong on all these things and then accuses our side, the side that has been almost consistent right on all these issues, to be "deeply and profoundly and consistently wrong."

Sadly, there are delusionary people in the Republican party who actually believe these lies.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Wayward Christian Soldiers - New York Times

Wayward Christian Soldiers - New York Times

A powerful column in today's New York Times calls the political evangelical community to task for its inquestioning support for the war in Iraq. Charles Marsh, a professor of religion at UVA makes the case, unequivocally in my view, that those Christian leaders who supported the war did so in contradiction to the teachings of Jesus Christ. His concluding paragraph follows:

What will it take for evangelicals in the United States to recognize our mistaken loyalty? We have increasingly isolated ourselves from the shared faith of the global Church, and there is no denying that our Faustian bargain for access and power has undermined the credibility of our moral and evangelistic witness in the world. The Hebrew prophets might call us to repentance, but repentance is a tough demand for a people utterly convinced of their righteousness.

"People utterly convinced of their own righteousness." Who does that make you think of?

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

James Webb, Republican, Nails Bush

James Webb, Ronald Reagan's Navy Secretary nails the modern day Republicans for their outrageous attacks on Democratic veterans. He powerfully notes the hypocrisy of their constantly invoking "the troops" when defending the war and then slandering genuine veterans who call attention to their lies. Now, it's Murtha's turn as some "independent" group with deep ties to the Republicans starts questioning his medals. The column is in the subscription section, but here's a key quote:

During the 2000 primary season, John McCain's life-defining experiences as a prisoner of war in Vietnam were diminished through whispers that he was too scarred by those years to handle the emotional burdens of the presidency. The wide admiration that Senator Max Cleland gained from building a career despite losing three limbs in Vietnam brought on the smug non sequitur from critics that he had been injured in an accident and not by enemy fire. John Kerry's voluntary combat duty was systematically diminished by the well-financed Swift Boat Veterans for Truth in a highly successful effort to insulate a president who avoided having to go to war.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Nagin's Noggin

OK, time for Democrats to throw Ray Nagin overboard, figuratively, of course. He says that Hurricane Katrina proved that God is mad at America. We know what we would say if Pat Robertson uttered this nonsense.

I consider myself religiously observant, if not devout. But I've had it with politicians of either party who claim to know the mind of God. Enough already.

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