June 23rd, 2005

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News Post

House approves flag-burning amendment
FYI, there was one instance last year of reported flag burning. ONE. Who needs a First Amendment anyway, right?
The House on Wednesday approved a constitutional amendment that would give Congress the power to ban desecration of the American flag, a measure that for the first time stands a chance of passing the Senate as well.

By a 286-130 vote -- eight more than needed -- House members approved the amendment after a debate over whether such a ban would uphold or run afoul of the Constitution's free-speech protections.

Strategic Planning
How the White House is trying to box in the Dems on Bolton and the Supreme Court. Plus, Rove hits the road in New Jersey.
The White House is on a hair trigger and it has nothing to do with Iraq or Al Qaeda. The twitchy, nervous mood is the product of a far more pressing battle—one that promises to shape domestic politics for the rest of the year while also shaping President George Bush’s place in the history books.

Durbin fsked up
by Kos
I've avoided writing about Durbin's apology because I've been too angry to do so without kicking up one of my patented shit storms.

So I'll just let a conservative blogger say it for me.

John Cole supports the war, but understands that torture is making victory that much more difficult while putting our brothers and sisters in arms in even greater danger.

Torture isn't a partisan issue. And by apologizing, Durbin caved to those who worked their best to turn it into one. And the right-wing partisans rejoice -- content in their ability to trivialize what is one of the most serious issues facing us morally, as a nation, and practically, on the battleground.

As for Mayor Daley, who cut off Durbin at the knees -- a pox on his house. His time is coming to an end. I hope Jesse Jackson Jr. takes him on.

Update: Gilliard tells Durbin to go fuck himself. I hate to say it, but I can't help but agree.
Next time you need help, go ask Dick Daley for it. If he and his administration aren't in jail, that is.

Damn right.

More worthwhile reading from Andrew Sullivan's blog.

Mo' Kos
He makes it easier for me.

Young Republican Conference
(More on the Operation Yellow Elephant campaign at Jesus General)

Hagel: "We are Losing in Iraq"

Lawless Republicans

And speaking of, I'm loving this.

Extreme Chutzpah

Direct Assault on the Right To Privacy By Wisconsin GOP

Danforth Rejects The Party of Dobson

Southern Baptists End Disney Boycott
How nice of them. *wretch*
Southern Baptists have voted to end their boycott of the Walt Disney Co., a move that comes eight years after the group condemned as immoral and "gay-friendly" everything from the company's same-sex employee benefits to the TV show "Ellen."

"We felt like it was time to end it," said Gene Mims, chairman of the Southern Baptist Convention committee that put a new Disney resolution before some 12,000 members at the denomination's annual convention Wednesday.


U.S. Supreme Court rules local governments may seize homes and businesses for private economic development.
I am SO not kidding. I have no response to this, words fail me.

Even scarier, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eminent_domain
In the United States, the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution requires that just compensation be paid when the power of eminent domain is used, and requires that "public purpose" of the property be demonstrated. Over the years the definition of "public purpose" has expanded to include economic development plans which use eminent domain seizures to enable commercial development for the purpose of generating more tax revenue for the local government. Critics contend (http://reclaimdemocracy.org/civil_rights/public_use_corporate_abuse.php) this perverts the intent of eminent domain law and tramples personal property rights.
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Rumsfeld rejects Iraq timetable
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld rejected calls by some congressional Democrats on Thursday that the Bush administration set a timetable for U.S. withdrawal from Iraq. "That would be a mistake," he told a Senate panel.
"Timing in war is never predictable. There are never guarantees," Rumsfeld told the Senate Armed Services Committee. "Those who say we are losing this war are wrong. We are not."
Is that so.

In other news, the Mississippi judge in the Edgar Ray Killen case just sentenced him to the full 60 years. I didn't think they would, maybe there is justice afterall.

'Healed' by God

Conservative Christians hold conference to 'cure' gays
Dr. James Dobson is the leader of Focus on the Family, which is calling on gays and lesbians to undergo "reparative therapy."
When activists for gay and lesbian causes gather outside a church near Seattle this weekend, they will have many critical things to say about how conservative Christian institutions have treated them.

Inside Northshore Baptist Church, where Focus on the Family will be preaching that homosexuality can be “healed” by the power of God’s love, Christian counselors will be making much the same point.

In addition to “powerful stories of ex-gay men and women,” people attending the Love Won Out conference will hear “a challenge to the church,” said Dr. Bill Maier, a child and family psychologist who is one of the event’s main speakers. Another is the Rev. Nancy Heche, the mother of Anne Heche, the actress who famously married a man after living a widely publicized lesbian life with comedian Ellen DeGeneres.