Saturday, December 21, 2002

Time says:

Senator Bill Frist, M.D.— the only surgeon in the Senate — is about as far from pro-choice as you can get. That distinction added striking power to his announcement this week that he supports embryonic stem cell research, albeit within a strictly regulated framework.

Ailes notes that Peeger Nooner is speaking in code when she refers cryptically to the "school liberation movement."
I just want to say again that, snark aside, the fact that the Frist Family Business makes money providing abortions is no small bit of hypocrisy given his stated position and voting record on the subject. There is something truly odious about having the *private* power to affect something but abandoning that avenue, for money, and instead trying to implement your agenda with policy. Or, in reality, not trying to implement it but posturing about it.

And, yes, blahblah it's his brother's company not his, but he's made a lot of money off of it and as far as I know hasn't taken a stand on the company's policy.

This is BIG hypocrisy of the most disgusting kind.

more on this later...(time allowing)
To the Barricades has another post worth reading.

Just remember: It ain't just the South. It's in the mountains of Oregon and Idaho; it's in the sandhills of Nebraska; it's in the central valley of California. It's everywhere that change comes and frightens people and makes them yearn for days that never happened.

UPDATE: David Neiwert adds:

To the Barricades, who writes from Nebraska, certainly knows whereof he speaks.

It is becoming increasingly clear that among the voters to whom George W. Bush and the GOP make appeals are right-wing extremists. There have been a number of instances well outside the South (where the neo-Confederate appeal has been clear) in which leaders of various extreme right-wing factions, from militiamen to neo-Nazis, have indicated a clear identification with Bush.

This of course is not to say that Bush sympathizes with their philosophies. Rather it is simply clear that certain gestures and appeals that he makes are enough to persuade these voters that he is their kind of president.

The mass of these votes used to go to the Reform Party, until Pat Buchanan took over and ran with a black woman for a running mate. That, combined with the "dire threat" posed by Gore's selection of a Jew as a running mate, drove many of these voters to the GOP in 2000. Witness, for instance, the presence of Don Black's Stormfront folks protesting on Bush's behalf at the Florida recount fiascoes.

The significance of this is the way the increased traffic between the extremist and mainstream right wings is transforming each faction. And since the mainstream is by far the larger faction, one has to be concerned about the amount that the poisonous ideologies of the extreme right are seeping into the mainstream.

This trend began to emerge in the 1990s on two fronts: first, the white-supremacist movement was remaking itself as the "militia" movement as a way of gaining entree into the mainstream; and the mainstream right's excessive attacks on Bill Clinton, which often emerged from a radical-right echo chamber. The Bush-identification phenomenon means that the mainstream and extremist right have become even tighter in their associations.

This will become an important factor, I fear, if the Democrats pose any kind of serious threat to the Bush regime in 2004.

Note how Bush distances himself from the Anti-lott contigent:

No bigotry. Lott's withdrawal as Senate leader gives the president the opportunity to renew his campaign to prove he is a different kind of Republican, without the complication of working with a man tainted as a sometime defender of segregation. In the interview, Bush was eager, for the first time, to detail his views on America's continuing racial divide. But just 48 hours before Lott stepped down, Bush said Lott "shouldn't leave his position." The president did not want to give Lott the final public shove, even while his allies were working behind the scenes to force Lott out. "My attitude about race is that we ought to confront bigotry, all forms of bigotry," Bush said, "and I believe the American–I know the American people are good, honorable, decent people. And occasionally the bigot has his day. I don't think Trent Lott is a bigot. I find him to be a, you know, he's a friend. . . . My job is to continue to work for an America that welcomes all and that is nondiscriminatory, and I will do that."

A bit of justice perhaps...

Awhile back a Mississippi judge wrote this letter to the editor:

Dear Editor:

I got sick on my stomach today as I read the (AP) news story on the Dog attack on the front page of THE MISSISSIPPI PRESS and had to respond! AMERICA IS IN TROUBLE!

I never thought that we would see the day when such would be here in AMERICA.

The last verse of chapter one of the book of Romans in our HOLY BIBLE is my reason for responding and sounding the alarm to this. You need to know as I know that God in Heaven is not pleased with this, and I am sounding the alarm that I, for one, am against it and want our LORD to see and hear me say I am against it.

I am sorry that the California Legislature enacted a law granting gay partners the same right to sue as spouses or family members. Also, that Hawaii and Vermont have enacted such a law, too. In my opinion, gays and lesbians should be put in some type of a mental institute instead of having a law like this passed for them.

I don't know, but I believe if we vote for folks that are for this we have to stand in the judgment of GOD the same as them. I am thankful for our Legislators and pray for wisdom for them, on such unbelievable legislation as this. May GOD bless each one of them in JESUS CHRIST's name I pray!

Thank you for printing this.

Connie Glenn Wilkerson

Now that the country has purged itself of its last racist by deposing Trent Lott, perhaps we can move on to anti-gay bigotry. This bastard is a judge, you see - using his religion to justify his bigotry. Anyone wanna bet how much "justice" a gay man might actually get in his court?

There is at least this outcome:

(Atlanta, Friday, December 20, 2002) — A state commission on judicial conduct today recommended that the Mississippi Supreme Court penalize a local judge who publicly advocated that gays and lesbians should be institutionalized. The recommendation is in response to an ethics complaint Lambda Legal filed with the commission earlier this year, saying that the judge's comments clearly violated the state's Code of Judicial Conduct and indicated that he would not decide cases involving gays and lesbians fairly and impartially.

Today's recommendation marks only the second time that a judicial commission in the South has recommended penalizing a judge for anti-gay bias and is the first such recommendation in Mississippi. Mississippi and a growing number of states explicitly include sexual orientation in their codes of conduct that prohibit judges from demeaning people based on gender, race, religion and other factors.

"This is a significant step forward for Mississippi and for the South," said Greg Nevins, the staff attorney in Lambda Legal's Southern Regional Office handling the ethics complaint on behalf of Equality Mississippi, a statewide gay civil rights group. "Judges are duty-bound to give a fair hearing to everyone, and these kinds of extremely homophobic statements make gays and lesbians, who often face an uphill battle for equality, feel that the justice system is closed off to them."

So, maybe there's some progress...

Nebraska Right to Life Director charged with Felony

Liberal Desert goes for the trifecta on Lott, Noonan, and Kaus.
Get Your War On rocks. So, go buy the book. Not just because it rocks, but because all royalties are going to Mine Detection and Dog Center Team #5. These guys rock too.

Don't wanna buy the book? Go give some money to Adopt-A-Minefield instead.
Guest lineup for the Sunday TV news shows:

ABC's "This Week" -- Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; Sen. George Allen, R-Va.; Vermont Gov. Howard Dean.


CBS' "Face the Nation" -- Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss.; Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla.; Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb.; Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa.


NBC's "Meet the Press" -- First lady Laura Bush; former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani; Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, Roman Catholic archbishop of Washington.


CNN's "Late Edition" -- Sen. Bob Graham, D-Fla.; Sen. Dick Lugar, R-Ind.; Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal; former Saudi intelligence chief Prince Turki al-Faisal.


"Fox News Sunday" -- Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del.; Sen. Dick Lugar, R-Ind.; Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
Alas, A Blog has a comprehensive update on the INS roundups including this from the ACLU.

...the agency recently failed to process more than 200,000 change of address forms and then unceremoniously dumped them in the largest underground records facility in the world – an abandoned mine near Kansas City – putting hundreds of thousands at risk of wrongful arrest and deportation for failing to report a change of address.

I know this is hard for many people to understand, but most violations of immigration law are actually no different than violations of traffic law. I don't mean violations of the "sneaking over the border" type, I'm talking about violations of the "line 17 on Form XV3-342-234-vv3-1 was incorrectly filled out" type or of the "the INS didn't send me my goddamn paperwork AGAIN" type. If the government wants to treat those things seriously, they have to first start doing their part.

Look, I've traveled and worked in other countries. And, when I did so at various times I was probably in violation of the equivalent types of things. Frankly, it's almost impossible to *not* be if some bureaucrat decides you are. I'm glad those governments didn't decide to arrest me.
John Pod talks about bloggers (and MEMEME) on On the Media. You can listen here.

and skippy writes a letter to the L.A. Times about Ms. Vincent.

Also, Larry Kestenbaum was on NPR yesterday talking about his website the Political Graveyard. Was a nice interview.
Mark Kleiman wrote a nice long post. And, you should go read it.

But, it's late, I'm grumpy, and frankly tired of this game, so let me sum it up for you: cut the crap, fools. Because, well, most of us aren't..

And, while I'm in this grumpy mode, go read Nathan Newman telling people who think that social security screws blacks to cut the crap, fools. Because, well, most of us aren't.

Then, go read Body and Soul tell us, in many parts, why the self-righteous condemnations of Lott don't mean squat unless you're also calling for Ashcroft's resignation. In other words, cut the crap, fools. Because, well, most of us aren't.

Friday, December 20, 2002

Senator Troll

TNR exposes the Senate's evil little troll. (and, yes, they do call him that up on the Hill...)

(via Josh Marshall)
Hello Guardian Readers. Here's the document the article was referring to. And make sure to check out the thoughts of American ex-pat-in-London Avedon Carol.
Throughout all this Lott mess something's been bothering me. I would say, roughly, that the difference between Left and Right on racial issues in this country isn't as some seem to think a policy difference but rather a difference in perception . Those on the Left generally think that racism is still a problem which adversely effects racial minorities enough that we should formulate a policy response to the problem, while those on the Right don''t. There are enough people on both sides who agree that there is a problem but debate about what should be done about it, but I do think the predominant difference is the perception issue.

However, soon after the Lott thing broke we heard plenty of Republicans screaming "look at all the Democrats who are racists too!"

Fine, fair enough. But if there are all those racists in the top levels of government, don't we have a problem?
The first step in the application process for permanent residency. Make sure you dot the i's or Ashcroft will take you away!
PLA has a must-read post about thimerosal, autism, and some other stuff he's too nice about.

Good afternoon. Please be seated. As you know, this morning Senator Trent Lott pretended to voluntarily relinquish the position of Senate Majority Leader. And while I was saddened to semi-violently force his hand in the matter, I was left with no other choice, what with the news media having suddenly awakened from a decades-long journalistic coma and started digging around in broad daylight for dirt on GOP racism. As such, much as I applaud Senator Lott's voting record on keeping the coloreds in their place and trying to nix that dumb Martin Lawrence King Day thing, unfortunately, the black cat's out of the body bag, and so Trent must go.
You know, in taking issue with Cass Ballenger's comments about McKinney, TAPPED doesn't exactly hit the, uh, right note when they admonish him for using the word "bitch" by telling him that this isn't a "rap video." WTF? I'm sure TAPPED could have said something like 'This is congress, not the locker room at Burning Tree' and made their point a bit better. No wonder Uppity Negro is starting to hate everyone...
Jesse's taking nominations for the year's 20 most annoying conservatives.

Only 20?...

Well, anyone who has followed the good Dr. Laura knows that in addition to her colorful past not matching her present moralizing, her present didn't either. Despite her insistence on the importance of family, and of honoring your father and mother in particular, it appears that she didn't communicate with her mother too often.
Bye bye Trent.

(phew...I told Mrs. Atrios he'd be gone be the weekend and she was starting to doubt my powers of prediction...)
Political Pulpit sends us this one.

Responding to Sen. Trent Lott's recent comments, Rep. Cass Ballenger told a newspaper he has had "segregationist feelings" himself after conflicts with a black colleague.

Ballenger, a North Carolina Republican, said former Rep. Cynthia McKinney, D-Ga., so provoked him that "I must I admit I had segregationist feelings."

"If I had to listen to her, I probably would have developed a little bit of a segregationist feeling," Ballenger told The Charlotte Observer in Friday's editions. "But I think everybody can look at my life and what I've done and say that's not true. I mean, she was such a bitch."

Clueless on so many levels...

Due to losing my power supply until those bastards at Dell send me another one, the lemonade stand here might operate at less than peak efficiency, including answering emails (which I'm pretty bad about anyway..)
Charles Kuffner lets you vote on my secret identity.

Next week: guess the location of the bat-cave!
Charles Dodgson notes the joys of old-fashioned cheap drugs. Beg your doctor for them, they might save your life. Besides, they're cheaper.
Eric Alterman pokes some holes in the Augusta conspiracy:

The anger, moreover, is curious because Times coverage has hardly been out of whack with the rest of the nation's newspapers. As of December 3 it had published four fewer stories than the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's thirty-seven, where Augusta is a local story, and just slightly more than the Los Angeles Times (twenty-seven pieces), USA Today (twenty-four) and the Washington Post (twenty-two).

(insert obligatory Mickey Kaus joke here)
Talk Left has some more about the INS roundups.

"One attorney, who said he saw a 16-year- old boy pulled from the arms of his crying mother, called it madness to believe the registration requirements would catch terrorists. "

"His mother is 6 1/2 months pregnant. They told the mother he is never going to come home -- she is losing her mind," said attorney Soheila Jonoubi, who spent Wednesday amid the chaos of the downtown INS office attempting to determine the status of her clients. Jonoubi said the mother has permanent residence status and that her husband, the boy's stepfather, is a U.S. citizen. The teenager came to the country in July on a student visa and was on track to gain permanent residence, the lawyer said."

A 16 year old who entered this country lawfully is permanently separated from his parents who are legal residents? That makes us sick to even think about. What country is this? We don't recognize it as America. But we can tell you whose country it is: Bush and Ashcroft's.

I couldn't believe the last time I got in an airplane. I had to wait 15 extra minutes while I was searched, and the jackbooted thugs in airline security took my keychain ornament. Sure, it was in the shape of a miniature gun, but IS THIS AMERICA?!?!!
"Cat-Killer" Frist is a major shareholder in HCA.

Yeah, it's in blind trust yadda yadda yadda, but it's all HCA stock practically.

Oh, and they perform ABORTIONS there. Freepers are pissed. I mean, how can you be against legal abortion when the family business does them....

All links broken, so if you're linking here just link to the main site and tell people what to look for, and if I've linked to anyone and it isn't working just go to their main page..

Thursday, December 19, 2002

eRiposte has some must-read comments about the INS roundups.

Look folks - imagine you're dealing with your DMV. Imagine Flunky #1 messes up your driver's license application and tells you to come down to the office. Then, when you do go down to the office as requested Flunky #2 notices you drove there AND you don't have your driver's license (because, well, they screwed up your application). Flunky #2's boss recently decided they now had a no-tolerance policy on such things and he has you arrested and thrown in jail.

Then, of course it doesn't stop there. The special DMV judge operates his own special DMV court which has its own rules. Speedy trial? Nah. You could be there awhile. Who will support your family? Who knows. Chances for appeal? Not really.

The DMV judge deports you back to a country you haven't lived in for 10-15 years. Your American children wave goodbye, as does your wife.

But, enough of that, I've got to go work on my next Tech Central Station column about the inconveniences of airline security for business travelers and my Fox News column about startling new evidence that Michael Bellesiles is a pedophile.
Mark Kleiman responds to the Volokh conspiracy over the Sheetheads.
Rittenhouse Review takes Norah to task.
Argh. Laptop power supply suicide.

Ward Connerly - lunatic?

I think Herbert's column makes that point pretty clear:

"Supporting segregation need not be racist," said Mr. Connerly. "One can believe in segregation and believe in equality of the races."

oh boy.

Now we know where David Frum is coming from when he says:

There isn’t a more inspiring political figure in America than Ward Connerly.

Look, Connerly's statement just doesn't fly in the face the view of any non-mouthbreathing people that "separate but equal" is Not Okay - it also completely goes against his own "colorblind California" initiative. It's unclear how the collection of statistics by race is "racism" while explicity support of segregation is not. Where do they get these people?

Jesse has more.

And, while we're on this, the number of African-Americans who have been given bonus points and been admitted to this list of elite schools can't possibly come close to the number of legacy admissions.

Princeton: 12.4%; 11.6% (different years)
Yale: 13.4%
U. of Penn.: 10%
Brown: 7%; "about 10%" (different years)
Columbia: 6%
Cornell: 13%
U. of Chicago: "just over 5 percent"
Bucknell: 5.6%
Boston College: 12.1%
Holy Cross: 10.7%
Wake Forest: "about 8%"
Johns Hopkins: 12.4%
Notre Dame: 23%; 22% (different years)
Ithaca College: 1.8%
U. of Virginia: 12.6%
U. of Rochester: 5.4%
Amherst: 10%
Middlebury: 5%
Colby: 4%
Villanova: 7%

These legacy admissions are, at least at the moment, strongly racist in *effect* if not intent, as past admissions and discrimination practices by these schools ensure that a disproportionate number of white applicants are "legacies." The racist policies of the past still have their legacy (ha ha!) today.

Make sure to order Eric Alterman's new book - "Liberal Media? What a Crock!"

Or, order Liberal Media? - A Rock Opera by Bruce Springsteen here
CalPundit on why he can't be a Republican - the undisguised bigotry against gays/lesbians.
Well, Andrew Sullivan's pledge week apparently gave him $80,000. Despite the overwhelming generosity of my readers, I didn't make $80,000. The terrorists have won! NOOOOOO!
LA Times has more:

Ramona Ripston, executive director of the ACLU of Southern California, called the detentions doubly disturbing because "a lot of the Iranians are Jews who fled Iran because of persecution, and now they are undergoing similar persecution here.... This is just terrible."

Attorney Ban Al-Wardi, who saw 14 of her 20 clients arrested when she went with them to the registration, said that although everyone understands the need to protect the nation against terrorist attacks, the government's recent action went too far.

"All of our fundamental civil rights have been violated by these actions," she said. "I don't know how far this is going to go before people start speaking up. This is a very dangerous precedent we are setting. What's to stop Americans from being treated like this when they travel overseas?"

Mikhaela has some too. Happy (almost) graduation!
The Howell Raines Times hasn't reported on the INS roundup, but it does report on the flip-flop regarding the requirement that Armenians join in the registration process (which is limited to men of a certain age from a select group of countries), reminding us that they're a Christian country so they don't count. Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were added at the last minute.

OOPS, they did report here...
Uppity Negro has some thoughts.

and Brad DeLong has a question.
Mother Jones has the Trent Lott timeline o' bigotry.
Howard Owens has stuff up about the CNP.

I never responded to Instapundit's silly point here:

I would have thought, though, that "fundamentalists" -- even though their agenda differs from mine, or from Paul Krugman's -- have as much right to form "pressure groups" as anyone else. Does Krugman disagree? It appears that he does. Or am I wrong here?

What is it with people on the Right that they always assume someone is trying to silence them or argue that they don't have a right to exist? I can't speak for Krugman (unless of course I am him, in which case I always do), but what reasonable person thought Krugman was saying such a thing? The CNP has counted as its members individuals in Congress, some rich business interests, and quite a few people whose avowed goal is to destroy constitutional democracy as we know it, tear up the constitution, and establish a Christian Theocracy. Sounds like advocates of treason to me. No joke. Now, that doesn't mean all members hold such views, but given the very prominent people who are members, and who speak to this group, it seems very appropriate to try to shine a little light on this very well financed "interest group" as it is appropriate to do for every other interest group.

The fact that then candidate Bush spoke to the group and the tape of the talk was disappeared at the very least serves to fuel the theories of conspiracy mongers like myself.

But, what should I expect from people who ignore the fact that the Washington Times is owned by a messianic billionaire, who also is connected to the CNP through its founder LaHaye and others, and staffed with neo-confederates.

UPDATE: sofla says:

It is considered paranoid to mention that this Sun Moon guy has lost billions in his Washington Times publishing company (including Insight Magazine), with no commercial viability in prospect, ever, and staffed it up with his co-religionists, explicitly to influence the direction of US policy, and further his aim of bringing the US, like the rest of the world, under his Messiahship. Moon has said the US is Satanic, Satan's spawn, and its system needs to be destroyed. He has co-opted the religious right by financially bailing out Falwell's Liberty University from the brink of bankruptcy, and bought the endorsement of Bush 41 with millions of dollars of honoraria.

Except for these troubling facts, I'm sure the WaTimes is beyond reproach, and trustworthy as an objective news source.

I'm trying to see if there's any defense funds being set up for the victims of the roundups. If anyone comes across them let me know so I can link them.
Ailes has up Norah Vincent's latest.

Oh. My. God.


The funny thing is - Norah wasn't accused of plagiarism by a vengeful blogger, she was accused of plagiarism by a fellow Real Published Paid Journalist in an email to a vengeful blogger.[UPDATE: well, specifically she was accused of "stealing" by Pierce]

In any case, maybe Norah should read her own book:

$2 million? That's money down the drain.

Here's more on the roundups.

Reza Tabib was indignant that his friend Efran Haj Rasoli -- a 19-year-old Irvine Valley College student -- was taken into custody Monday because he lacked a residency card. Tabib said the INS wrote Rasoli a letter indicating it had been approved in 2000 but that because of INS backlogs, it had not arrived.

This is sounding really bad.
And more.

Traplci, of Santa Ana, said none of the men had expected any problem. All have lived in this country for years, and all are in various stages of obtaining their green cards. Most had received INS letters telling them their applications had been accepted. "These people who were at the INS office came from Syria, Iraq, Iran and other countries," he said. "




The move shocked many foreigners and their lawyers, who claimed the INS had changed its established practice of not detaining people until their green card applications were processed.

Immigration officials said they have always tried to detain immigrants who overstayed their visas, but didn't always have the resources to find them.

"This is not entrapment," Adele Fasano, district director of San Diego's INS office said. "These are people who have chosen to violate the laws of our country, and they will be held accountable for that."

fuckers, fuckers, fuckers.

Wednesday, December 18, 2002

One comparison Bob Somerby has been hitting recently is the disparate treatment of Gore's highly priced consultant compared to McCain's highly priced consultant. Gore was mocked for both the price he paid and the advice he was imagined to be receving.

Gore's consultant was paid the whopping sum of $15,000 per month. She was the moderate feminist Naomi Wolf, who while not being of the "backlash" variety, is hardly a radical by any stretch. Presumably, though we can't really be sure, Ms. Wolf was paid to help Gore reach out to women voters.

McCain's was paid $20,000. He was Richard Quinn, publisher of Southern Partisan magazine. Presumably, though we can't really be sure, Mr. Quinn was hired to help McCain reach out to neo-confederate bigot voters.

Which one do you remember hearing about in election 2000?
Buncha 50-60 year olds regretting their votes now.

The Bush administration and its pals in the corporate suites are pulling off just such a filch right now. In a truly mean-spirited retreat from the principles of hard work and loyalty, they're setting up a raid on middle-class pensions.

"Radical. Anti-worker," fumed Rep. Bernard Sanders (I-Vt.). He calls it another assault by "Enron culture" CEOs whose campaign contributions hold sway in the administration. "It is going to cost employees dearly," warned his California Democrat colleague Rep. George Miller.

Indeed, the General Accounting Office projected that workers could wind up with reductions of 20% to 50% in the monthly pensions they worked for and planned for.

A few years back, the idea of doing away with traditional retirement plans in favor of cash-balance pensions caught on in a big way, and as many as 700 companies imposed the switch on their 8 million or so workers. But they ran into trouble. Employees began to understand what was happening: Older, long-term workers realized that they were the targets. And why not? They were the ones about to retire and put a drain on company profits. They began filing lawsuits and complaints, and the Clinton administration imposed a moratorium on the swindle.


LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Hundreds of Iranian and other Middle East citizens were in southern California jails on Wednesday after coming forward to comply with a new rule to register with immigration authorities only to wind up handcuffed and behind bars.

Shocked and frustrated Islamic and immigrant groups estimate that more than 500 people have been arrested in Los Angeles, neighboring Orange County and San Diego in the past three days under a new nationwide anti-terrorism program. Some unconfirmed reports put the figure as high as 1,000.

The arrests sparked a demonstration by hundreds of Iranians outside a Los Angeles immigration office. The protesters carried banners saying "What's next? Concentration camps?" and "What happened to liberty and justice?."

A spokesman for the Immigration and Naturalization Service said no numbers of people arrested would be made public. A Justice Department spokesman could not be reached for comment.


One activist said local jails were so overcrowded that the immigrants could be sent to Arizona, where they could face weeks or months in prisons awaiting hearings before immigration judges or deportation.


The Iranian protesters said many of those detained were victims of official delays in processing visa and green card requests.

"My father, they just took him in," one young man told reporters. "They've been treating him like an animal. They put him in a room with, like, 50 other people and no bed or anything."

Khan said one of those in jail was a doctor, who was being sponsored for U.S. citizenship when his sponsor died.

If the INS were a perfectly well-functioning machine without any gray areas in the regulations or time delays in the processing, this type of thing might be warranted. But, knowing many people of varying immigration classifications I understand well what a nightmare it can be. Aside from the normal bureaucratic delays, I know people who have been given what amounts to illegal instructions by their current or future employers with regards to the proper procedures for attaining visas. There are many people who are nominally "legal" but for whatever reason are somewhere between the proper bits of paper, and here is where discretion by the INS employees is appropriate. Since 9/11, the "loopholes" in immigration, which were really just band-aids and gum used to mend and fill the cracks of a ridiculous system by the INS employees, have all been closed up and practically anyone could be found in violation.

Engaging in mass roundups of a particular ethnic group can only be counterproductive on so many fronts. It sends a message not to come forward - ever - and to drive people underground. It creates resentment among their relatives and sends a signal that they are second class citizens as their relatives on expired tourist or student visas aren't simply escorted to the airport, as a European might, but thrown in jail. And, all of this needlessly. If these people needed to be deported there were ways to do it other than rounding them up suddenly, en masse, ensuring that an overloaded processing system remains overloaded leaving them in limbo - in jail - for who knows how long.

Wyeth pulls a David Brooks and goes and visits an actual Red Sate (well, in cyberspace anyway).


NEW YORK (CNN) -- Former President Clinton said Wednesday it is "pretty hypocritical" of Republicans to criticize incoming Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott for stating publicly what he said the GOP does "on the back roads every day."

"How do they think they got a majority in the South anyway?" Clinton said outside a business luncheon he was attending. "I think what they are really upset about is that he made public their strategy."

He added: "They try to suppress black voting, they ran on the Confederate flag in Georgia and South Carolina, and from top to bottom the Republicans supported it."

The former president then said, "He just embarrassed them by saying in Washington what they do on the back roads every

He accused Republicans of "trying to run black voters away from the polls" in states such as Arkansas, Louisiana and Florida.
Clinton also cited recent gubernatorial elections in Georgia and South Carolina, won by Republicans.


"I think the way the Republicans have treated Senator Lott is pretty hypocritical since right now their policy is, in my view,
inimical to everything that this country stands for," Clinton said.

The sound you hear is that of the squeals of self-righteous fury being angrily tapped into 5000 Blackberries in DC bars.
So, any righty bloggers been talking about the race-baiting that was the manufactured South Dakota voter "fraud?"
David E. beats up on Abigail Thernstrom.

As does Brad DeLong.
Leah A., who needs her own blog ( maybe her and Digby could team up? - ed. I like it!) says:

This is an area as ripe for some left of center blogosphere deconstruction as was race a la the Lott comment.

The attitudes being expressed in this material, radically looney though they are, have been tolerated on the right, and to a shocking extent, those who hold them or tolerate them, have been accorded the status of unexceptional, non-extremist, mainstream commentators.

Routinely, when Pat Robertson is interviewed on any of the cable news shows, he is never asked any questions that even begin to explore the right wing radicalism that is on copious display on The 700 Club. On one show some years ago, while defending a Judge who likes to say a Christian prayer in court before a case is heard, Robertson insisted he'd have no problem with a Moslem judge reading from the Koran, though he was pleased as a nice cup of Christian punch to note there are no such judges anywhere in the US of A. A week later, there was a filmed "news" report on the show on the growth of Islam in America in which Islam was identified as a Satanic religion, the symbols of which Christians had to be on guard to avoid, including visiting mosques, or having Islamic art in the home. We sometimes forget, because of the Reverend attached to their names, how often these guys lie.

Nowhere in the Constitution can one find the words "Christian," "Christian nation," "Christ," "Jesus," "salvation," "our Lord," "the Lord." Nor do the great majority of Americans wish they were there.

And as for the constantly referenced words in the Declaration of Independence, "endowed by their creator," note that this is one of those truths that is "self-evident," i.e., not true because it is part of some sacred text, not true because it is "biblically based," true because humans can reason their way to its truth. The creator, who has endowed mankind with a nature that acknowledges these inalienable rights, could be a Christian, Moslem, or Jewish God, it can be evolution, it can be natural law; after all, most people don't think they created themselves and are willing to acknowledge, if nothing more, that a long chain of DNA stretching back eons preceded them. The source of the universal appeal of the Declaration around the world I'd locate in its strict neutrality on the question of exactly what kind of creator created us, even if in Jefferson's mind, it was a Christian one.

Up to now there's been no cost to politicians who play footsie with this lethally divisive desire to Christianize America, not because such a movement is supported by any kind of American majority. If most Americans really understood what these guys are talking about, they'd be flabbergasted. Bringing America back to its "Christian roots" may play in Texas, (and by no means everywhere in Texas) but I'm betting that its a distinctly minority view.

Sullivan, Bennett, Ingraham, Will, who's already embarrassed by the creationist branch of Christian conservatism, the "Standard" boys, are just as vulnerable to some hard questioning of their attitudes in this area as they are on race.

And yet, through-out the liberal media, liberals are constantly put on the defensive in regards to religion.
Time for that to end. As with race, time to start attacking what the other side doesn't want us to know about what they're really all about.

Nathan Newman tells us about the Frist family business.

And, does Howell Raines control what Lloyd Grove writes about now?

Here's some more on Burning Tree, which Lloyd Grove tells us Nickels is a member:

Burning Tree is a bastion of male exclusivity. No women are allowed anywhere on its extensive grounds. Only male taxicab drvers may bring members inside the gate. When an aviatrix in a small plane encountered engine trouble and crash-landed on a broad fairway, groundskeepers posted a cordon around the shaken lady and her damaged craft until arrival of a sheriff's unit.

TBogg takes on that idiot Michael Kelly.
Does Bill Quick really see the strikes lockouts in Venezuela as some sort of socialist uprising?


Even More Theocrats

On Wednesday March 1, NRA President Jeffrey Ziegler; Christian Statesman Editor William Einwechter; NRA Boardmember Phillip Vollman; and Continental Group advisor Gary Humble; reestablished the lobbying arm of the National Reform Association in the nation's capital.

A proclamation stating the purpose of the NRA, along with the books Messiah the Prince and Explicitly Christian Politics, were distributed to key members of the House and Senate along with their respective staff members. Moreover, complementary subscriptions to The Christian Statesman were advanced to each.

Personal appointments were conducted with Rep. Asa Hutchison of Arkansas, Rep. John Hostettler of Indiana, Rep. J.D. Haworth of Arizona, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, and Rep. Steven LaTourette of Ohio. Meetings were also held with staff members of Rep. Helen Chenowith Hage of Idaho, Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, Sen. Don Nickles of Oklahoma, Sen. George Voinovich of Ohio, and Sen. Mike DeWine, also of Ohio. Also, materials were distributed to staff members of Rep. Bob Barr of Georgia.

Of special note, House Majority Whip Rep. Tom Delay's office will be crafting a proclamation that calls America back to her Christian foundation. We will be helping with the language of the bill so as to reflect more perfectly the particular goals of the National Reform Association. Moreover, we will be working with Rep. Helen Chenowith Hage on a National Day of Repentance which will cover not only the more obvious of our national sins, but will also address our lack of adherence to, and confession of, the Lordship of Jesus Christ in the civil sphere.

It was especially gratifying to meet with Rep. Asa Hutchison and Rep. John Hostettler. Hutchison was immediately impressed by our organization's Calvinistic and Reformed worldview. Hostettler was heartily encouraged by Explicitly Christian Politics, and his chief of staff is a member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. Sen. Don Nickles of Oklahoma has sent correspondence in appreciation for our visit and has been quite impressed with Symington's Messiah the Prince. Another encouraging sign was the interest exhibited by the staff members of the various representatives.

The common refrain from all was that the National Reform Association needed a permanent presence on Capitol Hill. This would facilitate constant interaction with our elected officials and help to craft legislation on issues important to our cause. At present, I am approaching financiers and trusts for the monies to open an NRA office in Washington D.C. There are already very positive signs that this could become a reality before the end of the year.

A follow-up trip to Washington is being planned. Keep us all in your prayers.

- Rev. Jeffrey A. Ziegler, President


From Gene Lyons' column today

Forgiving and endorsing, however, aren't the same thing. It's understandable that when Lott reportedly sought public support from Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice, he didn't get it. The florid condemnation of conservative pundits like Andrew Sullivan, however, who pronounced himself "still reeling from watching Trent Lott's bumptious, smug, self-congratulatory self-defense" strikes me as less than convincing. Where have these jokers been for, oh, the past 25 years or thereabouts?

Where were they when President Junior spoke at racist, anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic Bob Jones University during the South Carolina primary? When he nominated as Attorney General John Ashcroft, who, like Lott, also has longstanding ties to the CCC and has given interviews to Southern Partisan magazine praising the patriotism and moral superiority of Jefferson Davis and other Confederate slaveholders?

The Island of Dr. Frist

Frist is an animal lover who said his decision to become a doctor was clinched when he helped heal a friend's dog. But Frist now found himself forced to kill animals during medical research. And his new dilemma was finding enough animals to kill. Soon, he began lying to obtain more animals. He went to the animal shelters around Boston and promised he would care for the cats as pets. Then he killed them during experiments. "It was a heinous and dishonest thing to do," Frist wrote. "I was going a little crazy."

I guess it does take 4 cats to make one cat with 4 asses..

UPDATE: via Amygdala I see that

Today, he'll appear at the National Zoo at 6 a.m. to give cardiac exams to the apes and baboons.

Better count them before he leaves.

So, aside from being a rich asshole what does a typical CNP member do? Being a rich asshole is part of it. Take Howard Ahmanson, for instance, heir to an S&L fortune. Ahmanson is (or was recently at least) on the Board of Governors of the CNP. In addition to being a CNP member, he's spent a lot of money on anti-evolution causes, funding the Discovery Institute's Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture, which is intended to "unseat not just Darwinism but also Darwinism's cultural legacy."

Ahamnson is a diehard Christian Reconstructionist. These are the people who think the Handmaid's Tale is a how-to manual, with an explicit goal of replacing constitutional democracy with Christian theocracy in the U.S. He was for years a member of the board of the Chalcedon Foundation, a reconstructionist "think tank" created by R.J. Rushdoony. Rushdoony was also a long-time CNP member, the CNP having, according to Phyllis Schlafly, "all the best people." Some of his choice quotes can be found here, but it suffices to say that biblical law requires the death penalty, perhaps by stoning, for a whole range of offenses. And people mocked Margaret Atwood.

Anyway, back to Ahmanson. What else does he do with his money aside from funding creationists, the CNP, and Christian Reconstructionists? One thing he does is invest in electronic voting machine companies. Though it appears to be currently unknown whether the investment group he was involved with still retains a controlling stake, it previously did have one in ES&S. Other notable players in ES&S include Senator Chuck Hagel (it's currently run by the McCarthy group, which is run by Hagel's Campaign Treasurer. 80% of Nebraska votes are counted by ES&S machines, and Hagel also owns a stake). News reports stated that Florida counties were very heavily lobbied by Republicans in the Florida executive branch to purchase touch screen machines from ES&S. They are also used in Texas, California, and elsewhere.

Electronic voting machines should top the list of concerns of anyone concerned about the integrity of the voting process ande democracy itself. The fact that scary folks like Ahamnson are involved isn't the only reason. These systems are proprietary, unauditable, unverifiable and have no paper trail. Voter fraud is nothing knew and has been a feature of elections since their dawn. These electronic machines just make it easy and untraceable. The fact that some people whose stated mission in life is to rip up the constitution are potentially involved in their development, marketing, and operation doesn't make me feel more confident about them.

UPDATE: just been informed Rushdoony is dead. post edited to reflect this.. Learn something new every day.
(from no more mister nice blog).

Who is on the Council for National Policy?

Some descriptions here:

Leonard's article and Forum opinion piece failed to mention that in April 1997, Columbus Alive revealed that Batchelder was listed as a member of a little-known and highly secretive far-right Council for National Policy (CNP). Author and investigative reporter Russ Bellant and Chip Berlet of Political Research Associates both told the Alive that the CNP had ties to white supremacists. Berlet described CNP members as "not only traditionally conservative, but also [ascribed to them] nativism, xenophobia, theories of racial superiority, sexism, homophobia, authoritarianism, militarism, reaction and in some cases outright neo-fascism."

Well-known CNP board members include: the Reverend Pat Robertson, a right-wing TV evangelist and former Republican presidential candidate; the Reverend Jerry Falwell, leader of the now-defunct Moral Majority; Phyllis Schlafly, leading anti-feminist; and Joseph Coors, whose family finances an interlocking network of ultra-conservative and far-right institutions.

Less prominent members of the CNP are more telling of the organization's politics, according to Bellant. For example, one member is R.J. Rushdoony, the theological leader of America's "Christian Reconstruction" movement that advocates that Christian fundamentalists take "dominion" over America, abolish secular humanist democratic government and institute strict Old Testament law. Rushdoony argues that to restore morality in America: Homosexuals...adulterers, blasphemers, astrologers and others will be executed." White supremacists like Richard Shoff, a former Ku Klux Klan leader in Indiana, and John McGoff, a well-known supporter of the former South African apartheid government, are also members.

Bellant says that the Council's creation was inspired by business and political leaders who are also leaders of the John Birch Society. Founded in 1958, the John Birch Society was initially identified by scholars as a racist and anti-Semitic organization. The Birch Society and the CNP had been intertwined since the Council's inception in 1981. Tim LaHaye, a Moral Majority leader, received backing from the late Texas billionaire Nelson Bunker Hunt, who is a member of the Birch Society's National Council, to found the CNP.

In 1982, Tom Ellis succeeded LaHaye as CNP President. Ellis formerly served as director of the Pioneer Fund, a foundation that finances efforts to prove that African-Americans are genetically inferior to whites. Eugenicists William Shockley, Arthur Jensen and Roger Pearson are recipients of past Pioneer grants. Pearson is on record advocating that "inferior races" should be "exterminated."
Sam Heldman notes that Andy Sullivan thinks it is wrong to accuse people who are against affirmative action of being racists, but right to accuse people who are FOR it of being racists.

(via Ted)

There's a reason we call him Crazy Andy....He's crazy enough to be proud of this:

Sullivan's tenure at TNR was often turbulent, controversial and pioneering...Under Sullivan, the magazine campaigned for early intervention in Bosnia, for homosexual equality, and against affirmative action. TNR also published the first airing of 'The Bell Curve, ...

I'm pretty confident I know which one of us is a goddamn bigot.

As Andy said at the time, demonstrating that in addition to being a racist he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about:

When The New Republic devoted almost an entire issue (10/31/94) to a debate with the authors of The Bell Curve, editor Andrew Sullivan justified the decision by writing, "The notion that there might be resilient ethnic differences in intelligence is not, we believe, an inherently racist belief."

As we know:

As well they might. Nearly all the research that Murray and Herrnstein relied on for their central claims about race and IQ was funded by the Pioneer Fund, described by the London Sunday Telegraph (3/12/89) as a "neo-Nazi organization closely integrated with the far right in American politics." The fund's mission is to promote eugenics, a philosophy that maintains that "genetically unfit" individuals or races are a threat to society.

The Pioneer Fund was set up in 1937 by Wickliffe Draper, a millionaire who advocated sending blacks back to Africa. The foundation's charter set forth the group's missions as "racial betterment" and aid for people "deemed to be descended primarily from white persons who settled in the original 13 states prior to the adoption of the Constitution of the United States." (In 1985, after Pioneer Fund grant recipients began receiving political heat, the charter was slightly amended to play down the race angle--GQ, 11/94.)

The fund's first president, Harry Laughlin, was an influential advocate of sterilization for those he considered genetically unfit. In successfully advocating laws that would restrict immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe, Laughlin testified before Congress that 83 percent of Jewish immigrants were innately feeble-minded (RollingStone, 10/20/94). Another founder, Frederick Osborn, described Nazi Germany's sterilization law as "a most exciting experiment." (Discovery Journal, 7/9/94)

The fund's current president, Harry Weyher, denounces the Supreme Court decision that desegregated schools, saying, "All Brown did was wreck the school system." (GQ, 11/94) The fund's treasurer, John Trevor, formerly served as treasurer for the crypto-fascist Coalition of Patriotic Societies, when it called in 1962 for the release of Nazi war criminals and praised South Africa's "well-reasoned racial policies." (Rolling Stone, 10/20/94)

One of the Pioneer Fund's largest current grantees is Roger Pearson, an activist and publisher who has been associated with international fascist currents. Pearson has written: "If a nation with a more advanced, more specialized, or in any way superior set of genes mingles with, instead of exterminating, an inferior tribe, then it commits racial suicide."

Haha. Has Mickey Kaus had a new idea in 15 years? (from same article)

Many pundits carefully distanced themselves from the book, then made use of its claims to push their own ideological ends. In a New Republic column (10/31/94), Mickey Kaus argues against a genetic basis for IQ differences, saying, "There are obvious policies that might change the black 'environment' and therefore black IQ scores." But what's his example of such a program? "Abolition of cash welfare," he suggests.

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Gee, about 5 virus emails in the past hour. Thanks.
For all the discussion about who did or didn't push the Lott story, one thing is certain - The Note broke the Lott story.

Rittenhouse Review helps with my disinformation campaign.

And Digby defends Kaus:

The averge stoopid ciddizun don' unnersand no politicks an cudd nevir see that Sennadur Lott sed sumthin bad widdout gittin thuh werd frum Hillry or sumbuddy who is smart.

Gud thing Mikkey iz around ta sed us strate on whoos in charje cuz utherwize Slaight mite fire him fer spendin 2 munts slappin' Howell Rains fer havin' "suthern wite boy gilt" an ackting lik it wuz stoopud tuh wurry 'bout civul rites in this dae n aege.

Now ther sayin' thet sum dum regalar guy wuth nuthin but a modum knue that thuh mujoridy leeder of thuh Sinate wuz a big ole biggot when he sed segrugashun wuz gud, thad this regalar guy rote aboudit all bye hisself!

No weigh.

Mikkey noes sum regalor guy cudden see sumthin HE didun see so it mussed be a perfeshunal politicker hoo did it, lik Cidnie Boogieman who iz in charje of thuh branes of all thuh librulz everywear.

Cuz we stooopud ciddizunz cuddent ever no sumthing a big impordant wrider like Mikkey Kaus duzzent no. He gitz pade an evrything.

Well, I'm off to my planning session with Sid B., Bob B., Paul B., and Bill C.... 'night all
Welcome Interesting Times to the blogosphere.
Josh Marshall on the Republican voter fraud fraud (double word deliberate).

Thanks for the tip, Sid !
Hesiod follows up the Thimerosal story.
Haha, Mickey thinks Sidney Blumenthal operates the Mighty Casio.

if only he knew the truth...

UPDATE: Tbogg adds:

Good lord. Mickey doesn't want to admit that The Note is a first stop for most of us in the morning. Professional jealousy isn't pretty, is it?

The Note is like a first class newspaper delivered bright and early in the morning. The Kaus Files is like Marmaduke in that same paper.

I wish Sid Blumenthal sent us tips...

Tom Tomorrow, demonstrating the power of the Mighty Casio, tells us to watch MSNBC for another instance of Lott saying that Thurmond should have been elected in 1948.
Haha, apparently Rush Limbaugh is referring to the possibility that Mike Espy replaces Lott as a "Double Whammy." You see, he's a Democrat, AND he's black!

Double whammy indeed.

Lies, Damned Lies, and the AEI

And all our dreams, torn asunder...

Poll: Bush hasn't made case for war.

LOS ANGELES - More than two-thirds of Americans believe the Bush administration has failed to make its case that a war against Iraq is justified, according to a poll by the Los Angeles Times published Tuesday.

Ninety percent of respondents said they don't doubt Iraq is developing weapons of mass destruction. But without new evidence from U.N. inspectors, 72 percent of respondents, including 60 percent of Republicans, said the president has not provided enough evidence to justify starting a war.
Neptune World tells us of some hilarity at Enron with Poppy and Junior.

UPDATE: Watch some of the video.

Hey, I hit the trifecta!
Do you think Trent lott is a racist?
Tim Francis-Wright of Bear-Left sent this information in: has the CNP tax returns (pdf files: about 1000K each), at:


Their 2000 return used to be available at this link
but it isn't there any longer--probably because the Guidestar copy left on the list of substantial contributors (the only part of the Form 990 not subject to public inspection).

CNP seems to move around an awful lot, but I'm not sure whose offices they are linked to.

Among the contributors in 2000 were former Ambassador Holland Coors; Steve Forbes; Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation, and Donald Hodel, Reagan's second Interior Secretary and former head of the Christian Coalition. They remembered to leave out the contributors in 1998 and 1999.

Their 2000 and 2001 return list an affiliate called CNP Action, Inc., a 501(c)(4) social welfare organization. Typically, 501(c)(4) organizations can legally lobby and try to influence governmental affairs--but they don't provide a tax exemption for donations. 501(c)(3) organizations are limited in their legal lobbying capacity, but they do provide tax deductions for contributions: according to a statement on its tax return, CNP gives CNP Action one-third of new member contributions. This is, to say the least, abnormal behavior for a 501(c)(3) group.

Here's their board of directors:
As of 2000-

As of 2001-

Howard Phillips, of course, is the perennial Christian Reconstructionist wingnut presidential candidate
of the Reconstructionist wingnut Constitution Party.

Go vote in Dwight Meredith's Koufax Awards.

Bush's Neo-confederate Past.

* * * Governor Bush is listed as a donor to the Museum of the Confederacy, based in Richmond, Virginia, as a supporter of the Museum's annual ball -- an event held in a slave hall, which has drawn fire for its celebration of the Southern Confederacy.

* * * A letter on Texas Governor stationary, dated January 1, 1996, shows Gov. Bush congratulating the 100th anniversary of the United Daughters of the Confederacy -- a group known for glorifying the Confederate past, and which has been criticized for sponsoring books by extreme-right authors who, among other claims, downplay the harms of the slave trade.

* * * Bush also penned an official state letter honoring the Sons of Confederate Veterans in 1996, a group which claims to be mainstream, but which has repeatedly offered a platform for avowedly white supremacist organizations like the Council of Conservative Citizens
Neal Pollack makes some suggestions for the next Democratic candidate for president and discovers some startling information about John Ashcroft:

Note: It's recently come to light that in 1999, Attorney General John Ashcroft spoke at the annual breakfast of Citizens For More Conservative Citizen Councils, a dummy straw-man umbrella group set up by Grover Norquist to shield the Republican National Committee from accusations of rampant homophobia.

Oh, and buy his book! I'd review it if he could afford to send me a review copy, but he's assured me it's brilliant.

Oh man, having Mike Espy in the senate would be a sweet sweet outcome.
Welcome New York times readers. For some interesting reading, see a few posts below about the Council for National Policy. Also, read this article (not by me) about a Neo-confederate Editor of the Washington Times, and some additional information on that here.

When Lott's comments first broke, Washington Times Assistant National Editor Robert Stacy McCain said that he agreed with Gordon Baum, chief executive of the Council of Conservative Citizens, who commented "God Bless Trent Lott." Strangely, I find myself agreeing with both of them right now, though likely not for identical reasons.
The Self Made Pundit on "Lotts O' Lies."
Hesiod notes that Bill Frist is perhaps the one behind the provision in the Homeland Security Bill removing liability of Eli Lilly for any harm caused by thimerosal.

Dear Dr. Frist,

Didn't you take an oath, one which included some pithy phrase like "do no harm?"


UPDATE: It isn't clear he snuck it into the Homeland Security Bill, but he had previously sponsored it as a separate piece of legislation. Added word "perhaps" above.

Nickles is a bigot too! Say Lott's Pals.

Some Republicans working on Lott's behalf, meanwhile, are circulating records showing that Nickles's voting record on civil rights isn't much different from Lott's. Lott and Nickles voted against making Martin Luther King's birthday a federal holiday and against the Civil Rights Act of 1990. Both supported a tax exemption benefiting Bob Jones University, despite its policies discriminating against minorities and prohibiting interracial dating.

Lott's pals of course aren't concerned with Nickles' anti-gay bigotry.

Here's the transcript to Lott's hilarious BET interview.

GORDON: What about affirmative action?

LOTT: I'm for that. I think you should reach out to people...

GORDON: Across the board?

LOTT: Absolutely, across the board. That's why I'm so proud of my own alma mater now, University of Mississippi, that obviously had a difficult time in the 60s and 70s, now led by an outstanding chancellor, Robert Khayat, that has gotten rid of the Confederate flag, that has now has an institute of reconciliation, that has a leadership...

GORDON: Yet your votes in the past have not suggested that you are for affirmative action.

LOTT: I am for affirmative action. And I practice it. I have had African-Americans on my staff, and other minorities, but particularly African-Americans, since the mid-1970s.

Aside from looking like a buffoon, that's where Lott put the final nail in his coffin. He essentially conceded (rightly or wrongly) that opposition to affirmative action made you a racist, making it impossible for even his supporters to defend him..

Hey, apparently I made the news here. Oh, and here too.

Comments were dead so I switched to Haloscan temporarily.. I'll bring the old ones back later so they aren't lost.

Here are some links to information about the Council for National Policy

From the Institute for First Amendment Studies:




Other information:


Here (soft-pedals a bit).

(backers of a "voter integrity project")

On the CNP and
the get-Clinton project, on which more can be read about here.

Here's a full membership list and some other interesting information. Not a "mainstream" source, but it looks pretty good.

Monday, December 16, 2002

I hate it when the National Review makes sense.
Pontificator has the lowdown on Ashcroft. As James Carville said tonight, if we believe in equal justice - if Lott goes, Ashcroft goes.
Oh God, that BET interview was hilarious. Who knew that Lott was such a tireless crusader for affirmative action? These people at the JBHE must just be making this stuff up!

We know, for example, that Lott has appeared at two Mississippi rallies to raise funds for an all-white private school that was created in Carroll County, Mississippi, to enable white children to escape desegregation.
• We know that in 1984 Trent Lott lobbied the Reagan administration to restore tax exemptions to racially segregated private schools.
• We know, too, that when Ole Miss refused in 1962 to obey a Fifth Circuit Court order requiring the university to admit James Meredith, a black man, Trent Lott said that the federal government "had no business sending in troops to tell the state
what to do."


The Washington Post reported that when Lott addressed the Council of
Conservative Citizens, he endorsed the group as a "needed" organization "to help protect our flag, Constitution, and other symbols of freedom" from the "dark forces."


In 1989 Lott voted to eliminate federal funding for the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission.
• In 1990 Lott voted against the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1990.
• In 1990 Lott supported a proposal that would prohibit a defendant in death penalty cases from using statistical evidence which could show that race was an overriding factor in a jury's decision.
• In 1991 Lott opposed the motor/voter legislation which would have simplified voter registration for poor blacks in Mississippi and other states.
• In 1991 Lott supported an amendment by North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms that called for prohibiting private employers from using affirmative action procedures for recruiting black workers.
• In 1992 Lott voted against extending provisions in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 until 2007.
• In 1994 Lott voted against the confirmation of the highly esteemed black scholar William Gould as a member of the National Labor Relations Board.
• In 1995 Lott voted to eliminate funding for the Smithsonian's National African-American Museum.
• In 1998 Lott voted to eliminate a set-aside program for minority-owned businesses on federal construction projects.
I'd pay the BET host $10,000 if he asked Lott if he's for slavery reparations right now..
SASsy notes that Andy is still taking Moonie Money.
Oh man, judging from what Jonathan Karl just said regarding Trent Lott's BET interview, it's going to be total meltdown time..

It went something like this:

When asked if he supported affirmative action he said Yes. Across the board. When questioned why he's always voted against it he said his record hasn't always matched his actions, because he has personally supported affirmative action by hiring African Americans in his office....

Holy crap...

AEI flunky Bill Schneider made sure to follow up to make sure we understood that when Trent Lott said affirmative action, even the 'across the board' type, he didn't really MEAN affirmative action, just outreach you see, soo..
Thanks to everyone who has contributed over the past couple weeks or ever. If you're feeling slighted because I didn't thank you personally I apologize, but Amazon doesn't bother to tell me who contributes. I seem to remember that they used to (?) but if they did they stopped. So ...thank you!
Haha. Why am I not surprised. Kevin Martin of the Grover Norquist African American Republican Leadership Council posts on the Free Republic. Here he is.
Neal Pollack wants you to buy his book. You really should, because unless you do he won't be able to give the $5 million he promised me if I plugged it.
Andrew Sullivan rightly asks:

I wonder if, in twenty years or so, another politician is going to come acropper because of blatant scorn for gay citizens, uttered in, say, the 1990s. Don Nickles, anyone?

Good for you Andy, but why don't you tell your readers what you're talking about. Why don't YOU take the lead on this issue? Maybe it doesn't take 20 years? Besides, Lott 'came acropper' because of his comments TODAY, not twenty years ago.

(via Sullywatch)

If you repeat something often enough.

The latest person to repeat the "Trent Lott gets 1/3 of the black vote" canard is none other than Toe Sucker Morris.

According to this exit poll data, Lott only received 11% of the black vote in his 2000 race.

I've heard/seen others report the same, but they've escaped my memory at the moment. If you know anyone else propogating this lie please let me know.

UPDATES: Newsmax of course runs with it.

Digby reminds me that Grover's fake Black organization lied about it here on Foxnews:

Kevin L. Martin, government and political affairs director of the African American Republican Leadership Council, said people were overreacting to Lott's remarks.

"By no means was he endorsing segregation or anything like that. It was lighthearted, it was humorous." Martin said Lott captures 25 percent of the black vote in Mississippi, which he said couldn't happen if Lott were a racist

I ask again - what could be a worse form of race baiting than a fake "African American Republican" organziation that manufactures numbers to defend Lott? My God.

If Don Nickles were majority leader...

we wouldn't have problems like this.

Ill. H.S. Names 2 Girls 'Cutest Couple'

Their story has played out like the name of a popular lesbian movie: "The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love."

It started last month, when the girls - longtime high school sweethearts - were voted "cutest couple" by their fellow seniors at Crete-Monee High School in the suburbs south of Chicago.

Administrators balked, at first. Then several students walked out of class to support the girls.

It is a drama that, for a time anyway, awakened this sleepy town, lined with antique shops, churches and cafes, and still surrounded by corn fields.

In the end, the girls' parents - though a bit shell-shocked - agreed to let a photograph of the couple appear in the school yearbook.

And last week, district superintendent Roberta Berry wrote a letter praising the students at Crete-Monee High: "I am proud to say that while other schools continue to address issues such as alienation, bullying and hate crimes, we have a student body that not only accepts each others' differences, but also celebrates them."

Upset, some parents and community members have called to complain and written letters to the editor of local newspapers.

Talk Left details Nickles' voting record. It's up to the Republicans in the Senate to select their leader, but it's up to the media and the Democrats to tell us who they are.

Don Nickles is a Bigot

CNN is reporting that Frist is getting behind Nickles [UPDATE -they just corrected - behind his call for new leadership, not necessarily behind Nickles as Leader]. Okay, pundits on the right - online or otherwise, time to take a look at Don Nickles' bigotry. Is Andrew Sullivan going to come out strongly against him? Will Instapundit? Robert George? Jonah Goldberg? Jay Caruso? We all enjoyed the little orgy of conservative backslapping as they rallied to praise themselves for their opposition to bigot Lott. How about their principled opposition to Bigot Nickles? The world awaits their responses.

In 1998 Don Nickles vehemently opposed the nomination of James Hormel for U.S. Ambassador to Luxemborg. His clearly stated reason was that Hormel was unqualified simply because he was gay.

"He has promoted a lifestyle and promoted it in a big way, in a way that is very offensive. One might have that lifestyle, but if one promotes it as acceptable behavior, I don't think they should be a representative of this country. I think it's immoral behavior and I think a lot of other behavior is immoral and shouldn't be treated as acceptable behavior."

As noted in Gay Today:

The Bible, according to the Oklahoma Senator's calculations, teaches that homosexual behavior is "a sin" and "if one promotes that behavior…that person shouldn't be a representative of this country."

This of course, is not just the view of an anti-gay bigot, but a closet Christian Reconstructionist or Christian Identity adherent as well. The latter in particular used the bible to justify their views of racial inferiority and its supposed support for the institution of slavery. Should we accept Nickles' use of it to justify his own belief in discrimination both personal and as a matter of public policy?

Don't let the anti-gay code words like "promoting lifestyle" sucker you in. What lifestyle? Being gay? Promoting the right to be gay? Maybe promoting the right to be gay and be free of employment discrimination from the likes of Senator Don Nickles?

Be clear, there was no resistance from the charming, if disturbingly multilingual, country of Luxembourg:

In Monday's edition of the New York Times, Luxembourg's Ambassador to the United States, Alphonse Berns, said, "We would welcome Mr. Hormel." Additionally, discrimination against people on the basis of sexual orientation is illegal in Luxembourg, as it is in all European Union countries.

Let's be clear - Nickles was not objecting to civil union laws, or gay adoption laws, or any other new piece of legislation - objection to which is itself despicable, of course, but admittedly slightly less despicable than what Nickles was advocating in this situation- explicit employment discrimination based on nothing other than sexual orientation.

Nickles' involvement with anti-gay bigots goes much deeper than this. You could say he hangs around with the anti-gay bigot version of the League of the South/Southern Partisan crowd.

Nickles is involved with the McLean Bible Church, which has such other noteable congregants as Ken Starr and Steve Case. Its Pastor is the religious world's version of David Horowitz - former hippie turned crusader for cultural conservatism - which seems to revolve mostly around gay-bashing. As Signorile says in the article linked above:

Pastor Lon Solomon is a former hippie drug dealer who speaks out against adultery, abortion, premarital sex and homosexuality, including how and why people must come out of "that lifestyle," as the church's Worrell put it. "He does speak very openly about it," she explained. "Over the past year he's given several sermons on it."

McClean Church is also affiliated with Exodus International,

the "ex-gay" group that preys upon confused and conflicted gay youth, churning out slick propaganda. On the McLean Bible Church's Web site it's clear what other organizations the church is affiliated with: The site links to the far right Family Research Council and Focus on the Family, both of which have funded anti-gay ballot initiatives and which promote reparative therapy to "cure" gays.

I have heard the horror stories from people who as teenagers and young adults were forced into such "gay conversion" programs by their pastors and parents. It's a truly hideous, harmful, and dangerous "therapy."

Perhaps some on the Right would tell us which Republican senator SHOULD be Majority Leader?

P.S. Cancel your AOL acccount.

Lott and Black Staffers?

Blacks simply don't loom large enough in Lott's life or his mind to be a factor in his estimation of the Confederate president, or of anything else. As of 1999, reports The Memphis Commercial Appeal, Lott "had only one African-American worker, a mail clerk, out of a staff of 65."

Lucky Duckies

You see, social security isn't really a tax because you get something back from it, while all those other taxes are taxes, because you, don't get anything for them?

"The president is making the case that people who earn between $50 [thousand] and $75,000 a year should be paying a third more taxes," Matsui said.

Sunday, December 15, 2002

In more mundane news..

An estimated 400,000 home owners, sellers, buyers and mortgage refinancers around the country could be in for a financial shock at the stroke of midnight Dec. 31.

That's when the national flood insurance program grinds to a halt -- at least temporarily -- thanks to Congress' failure to reauthorize it before leaving Capitol Hill for the holidays.

At least they managed to get the Eli Lilly Security Act through...oh, and cheap insurance for big real estate developers backed by the taxpayer...
Well, Gore's out. Bummer. Ailes has the right headline.
Aside from genuine outrage, conservatives and Republicans have a practical reason for wanting Trent Lott to step down - some of them are tired of been linked with racists. Given Andrew Sullivan's marathon week of outrage at Trent Lott, don't you think he should worry about being associated with an explicitly secessionist neoconfederate bigot who also writes for the Washington Times ? Email Andrew ( and ask him if it doesn't reflect badly on him to work for such a newspaper. You can remind him that the newspaper previously had an editor with such views who was let go after being exposed by, of all people, Dinesh D'Souza.

Given that Andrew is currently expressing outrage at what is on the website of the Council of Conservative Citizens, maybe you can direct him to the website of the League of the South and, in particular, the writings of Robert Stacy McCain here and here.

Who knew that Creators Syndicate and were, until fairly recently at least, running columns by Samuel Francis, a member of the National Board of Directors of the Council of Conservative Citizens.

I'd be remiss in leaving these parts out, of course:

Francis joined the editorial staff of The Washington Times as an editorial writer in 1986. He served as Deputy Editorial Page Editor of The Washington Times from 1987 to 1991, Acting Editorial Page Editor from February to May, 1991 and a staff columnist from 1991 to 1995.

A highly-respected expert on international and domestic terrorism, Francis has authored numerous articles and studies on the subject, including The Soviet Strategy of Terror (1981). His writings have appeared in major newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, USA Today, National Review, The Spectator (London) and Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture, of which he is a contributing editor and for which he writes a monthly column, "Principalities and Powers."

UPDATE: here's the story of his being fired. So, has the Times become more willing to tolerate neo-confederate bigots like Robert Stacy McCain?

Perhaps you should email managing editor Francis Coombs ( and ask him if the Washington Times now endorses the racist view of secessionist neoconfederates despite having distanced themselves from them in the past.

Looks like the Republicans will have a Choice

Between bigot Lott or bigot Nickles.

Let's see if the media will ignore Nickles' support of discrimination (all signs point to yes!).
I can't find any confirmation of this, so take it for what it is.
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE "Hardball" transcript (imperfect)

Matthews: "The Bush team has fewer original members than Destiny's Child. Is all this upheaval weakened Bush's chances of reelection, or is the Democratic Party so knock-kneed and gutless they couldn't win a presidental campaign against Carrot Top?"

Matthews: "With us tonight, lead strategist for the Democratic National Committee, Amy Sanborn."

Sanborn: "Nice to be here, Chris."

Matthews: "I've known you for three seconds, I'm already bored."

Gore (as Lott): "Chris, when I said our country wouldn't have all these problems if Strom Thurmond had been elected president, it had nothing to do with segregation. I simply meant that things would have been better if Thurmond were president because he would have kept white people and black people separate. I just hate it when liberals take me out of context like that."

Matthews: "Why do I get the feeling you thought 'Birth of a Nation' was the feel good hit of the summer?"

Matthews: "Is this the kind of thing Democrats will point to at election time?"

Sanborn: "Chris, we have bigger fish to fry. Democrats need to show how our agenda is different than the Republicans. For example, Republicans want to go to war with Iraq. We only support such a war. Republicans want privatized Social Security. We believe Social Security should be privatized. You see? There are key differences."

Matthews: "Yeah, here one key difference: there are no Democrats in office any more."

Gore (as Lott): "Chris, Chris! It has come to my attention that some of comments about Strom Thurmond a minute ago may have been construed as racially insensitive. Let me apologize. I meant no respect -- no disrespect to any white people. I myself am a white man and some if not all my friends are white. Let me make this clear, as as I'm in office, we will leave no white person behind."

Matthews: "Senator, you're shedding a lot of light on the situation. Unfortunately, the light's coming from a cross you just set on fire."

Matthews: "Amy Sanborn, Amy! Should the Senator Grand Wizard here be punished?"

Sanborn: "Chris, the Democratic Party condemns Senator Lott's comments. We believe they are deplorable and worthy of censure. Unless somehow it turns out everyone's cool with what he said, in which case, so are we."

Matthews: "I want to try something. Hey Sanborn, Republicans want to outlaw kitty cats."

Sanborn: "Who doesn't?"

Matthews: "Republicans want 'Baby Got Back' to be the National Anthem."

Sanborn: "Democrats have always loved that song."

Matthews: "Republicans want to put Osama Bin Laden on the Supreme Court."

Sanborn: "It's about time!"

Gore (as Lott): "If I may, Chris. Too much emphasis has been placed on Senator Thurmond's pro-segregation campaign. There was a lot more to his 1948 platform. He wanted to make it illegal for black people and white people to marry each other. He had great ideas for raising tax revenue, like makin' black people pay to vote. The man is a genius."

Matthews: "As soon as I finish counting all the ways that's stupid I start yelling at you."

Matthews: "We're going to take a break. When we come back, Trent Lott explains why America would be better off if the Germans won World World II. Hubba dah hubba."

(source believed to be but I can't actually find it there.)