May 21st, 2007

Pro Life

Chicago Sun-Times Editorial

Bring troops home now

May 20, 2007

We're waist-deep in George W. Bush's nightmarish Middle East misadventure as the new, theoretically empowered Democrats are difficult to distinguish from the old, hamstrung Dems of a year ago. They're still too timid.

Rather than deftly acting to bring the troops home, the Democrats continue their eye-shifting and throat-clearing while the killing and dying go on and on. Last week, the new majority party yielded to the oxymoron argument that we have to support the troops by keeping them in the line of fire. The Feingold-Reid Iraq Bill that would have cut the funding and thereby forced the president to bring the troops home was defeated Wednesday in the Senate. On a procedural vote, the proposal that would have cut off money for combat operations in Iraq after March 31 of next year fell 31 votes short of the number needed to advance, losing 29-67.

The bill was defeated even as three U.S. soldiers remain missing and the death toll in Iraq is rising. The bill was defeated even as our puppet Iraqi government continues with its plans for a two-month vacation while the American men and women serving in their country are getting three months added to their yearlong tours of duty. The bill was defeated even as reports of poor care at Walter Reed Hospital for the mounting number of wounded troops is barely yesterday's news.

The Americans who voted the Democrats into power have been let down. Instead of counting on the Democrats to deliver on their implicit promise to end the occupation, we continue to count the costs of not correcting Bush's calamitous course. Those costs have been enormous in human casualties and financial resources. More than 3,300 U.S. military killed and more than 25,000 wounded -- nearly 1,000 of those amputees. A minimum of 63,796, a maximum of 69,850 civilians have been killed, according to the Iraqi Body Count Web site. More than 400 billion U.S. taxpayer dollars squandered. And we're not getting much bang for our buck. Daily attacks in Iraq have fallen only slightly to 149 in April from 157 in March. Mortar rounds are now battering the Green Zone, Baghdad's last presumed safe refuge.

Last week's vote was a loss for Wisconsin's Sen. Russell Feingold and other Democrats who want to bring the Iraq occupation to a halt. But the undertaking forced Democratic presidential hopefuls, including Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, previously reluctant to limit war funding, to come out in favor of the measure. Unfortunately, 19 Dems couldn't or wouldn't heed the distress signal that the American electorate fired last November, joining 47 Republicans in the vote to end the occupation funding. Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Armed Services Committee, is one of those Democrats. He said he opposes any measure that cuts off money for the war because ''we don't want to send the message to the troops'' that Congress does not support them.

That argument -- made smugly by legislators sitting safely and serenely in Washington, D.C. -- is about as logic-defying as others buzz-worded by the incompetent and corrupt Bush administration. We know them by heart. They play well to our emotions but not as well when we step back to question them. For example, could it be that setting a deadline to bring the troops home benchmarks the end of Americans dying for a continuously changing cause? What job are we staying to get done? Why are we staying where we're not welcomed? How are we supposed to secretly withdraw our troops without the insurgents knowing we're leaving?

We shocked and awed our way into Iraq four years ago, so if Baghdad should become an al-Qaida stronghold, what's to stop us from shocking and awing the city again? If 6 million Jews, surrounded by more than 200 million Arabs, have not been annihilated, why do we believe that an Iraq withdrawal will lead to a pitched battle with invading terrorist forces on Main Street in Peoria?

And, one last question: How much American blood has to flow to drown out the civil war in Iraq or cut through the hollow patriotic sloganeering here at home?

(no subject)

Human Rights Campaign: Takeaction against hate crimes

Extremists are STILL out-messaging us as the Senate looks toward a vote on the Matthew Shepard Act. 

The House victory must not be in vain. Your Senators need to know where you stand ASAP!

Click hereto tell your Senators to pass the Matthew Shepard Act.

Dear Jude, 

"All told, I received nearly five times as many calls, emails and letters from opponents of the bill as I did from its supporters."
That's the sobering explanation from Rep. Joe Donnelly(D-IN) of why he voted against the hate crimes bill in the House this month.
The bill could be up for a vote in the Senate in the coming weeks. Even if you've already sent a message to your lawmakers on this issue, your Senators need to hear from you now.
Extremist groups have made stopping the Matthew Shepard Act into the centerpiece of their agenda, and despite the desperation of their lies our opponents' messages keep coming. And lawmakers on Capitol Hill listen.
Sen. Chambliss and Sen. Isakson have not declared their support for this bill. The opposition's calls and emails are flooding their lines, discouraging them from voting for this bill, and they need to hear from you today.
The White House released a statement saying that President Bush's advisors recommend he veto the bill.However, we know that a strong Senate vote in support of the Matthew Shepard Act will be a critical factor in the president's final decision and the ultimate fate of the law.  
If we want the Matthew Shepard Act to become law, we need it to win big in the Senate, so that Congress sends a strong message to President Bush that he needs to sign the bill.
But anti-gay groups' political attacks will be even more intense as the Senate vote nears. Here are some of their absurd tactics leading up to the House vote:
  • Manufacturing a blatantly fake House transcript.
  • Promoting the work of a known racist filmmaker (whose other titles include "Keep America White").
  • Claiming this law would make it a crime to "read the Bible a certain way" or have anti-gay thoughts.
  • Callously invoking the Virginia Tech massacre.
Extremist groups are trying to drum up so much opposition to make Senators afraid to vote for this bill. But 68% of Americans support this bill's measures, so let's make certain they know that voting against this bill will anger even more of their constituents.
People like you and I need to cut through the noise and tell the Senate to vote for the Matthew Shepard Act. Let's turn the tide, starting right now.
Joe Solmonese
Joe Solmonese

OUR STORIES: Travis McClain
On May 7th, Charles Thomas Prickett was sentenced to a three hundred dollar fine for the brutal beating of Travis McClain, a gay man from Savannah, GA. Prickett received credit for time served for his sentence of one year in jail, even though he did not serve any jail time, and his eighty hours of community service was waived.

Georgia currently does not have hate crimes legislation that includes sexual orientation or gender identity. In both the 2006 and 2007 Georgia legislative sessions, hate crimes legislation was introduced, but the bills did not make it through before the session ended. We need a federal law on the books to protect gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people from hate crimes in states like Georgia. The passage of the Matthew Shepard Act will provide government an additional tool in the fight against hate-motivated violence.

Click here to email your Senators in support of the Matthew Shepard Act.

Having trouble clicking on the links above?Simply copy and paste this URL into your browser's address bar to take action today:
© 2007 The Human Rights Campaign.All rights reserved.
Human Rights Campaign |
1640 Rhode Island Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036-3278
Phone:202/628-4160 TTY: 202/216-1572 Fax:202/347-5323

File Under: ZOMG WTF???

A local radio station that I really enjoy when I'm in the truck and have none of my own music is having a contest on who has the most adorable child. It is a photo contest, but there's something WAY wrong with it. Check out the website - I'm so stunned by this I don't have the words. It's completely horrifying, I cannot believe they would call it that.

On the other hand, it's really fucking funny. Also, the little boy looks like my friend Shannon's youngest child.

This Broke Over The Weekend, I Forgot To Post It

From the Sioux City Journal:
A former member of the South Dakota House was arrested Friday on charges of rape and other offenses against two girls who were his foster children, the second time in a year that the Legislature has been rocked by allegations of improper sexual conduct.

Ted A. Klaudt, R-Walker, was charged in both Hughes County, which includes the state Capitol, and Corson County, where he lives, according to Attorney General Larry Long.

Klaudt was charged with eight counts of second-degree rape, two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, one count of sexual contact with a child younger than 16, two counts of witness tampering and one count of stalking.

The girls told law officers that Klaudt touched their breasts and vaginal areas during what he called exams for a purported scheme to have them donate their eggs to make money, Long said. At least one of the alleged offenses involving one girl occurred when she was a page during a legislative session.

"He was convincing these girls they were candidates for donation of their eggs, that this would be a significant financial advantage to them and it was necessary for him to perform these acts on the girls to determine if they would be viable candidates for the procedure," Long told The Associated Press.

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More on this piece of shit motherfucker: