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Friday, March 05, 2004

Ashcroft in Hospital 

As much as I disagree with the man (and yes, even dislike him), I don't wish this on anyone.

My grandmother had to go through this, and I know how much pain and discomfort she was in.

I'm sending some good vibes his way and you should, too.

Geriatric Throwdown 

When old people attack.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Segregation II 

Holy shit...

I can't believe this is even re-entering our public debate.

The Bush administration has earmarked $297 million each year for "innovative programs" in education, including single-sex schools. Ms. Aspey said the department did not track how much of the money was going to same-sex instruction.

Mm hmm...

So "innovative programs" is how it's phrased, but there is no data as to which exciting new "programs" the money is going to.

So I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that perhaps this deals with the social conservative ideal of "shaping roles" according to sex. Girls Schools will be veritable conservatories focused on home economics and Boys Schools will focus on molding young men into overbearing dicks hell-bent on returning society to a pre-enlightenment nightmare of "faith-based" social structuring and an economy founded on principles of Social Darwinism (though Biological Darwinism will, of course, not make an appearance in the curriculum).

I kid...I kid...

Well...sorta.

Okay, actually that's exactly what I imagine the goal being, but it's probably as much a factor of the amount of sleep I got last night as anything else.

Besides, don't they worry that this kind of structuring of education will lead to the dreaded Gay? Just think of a same-sex kindergarten class when Ms. Fuddyduddy asks, "Who do you want to marry when you grow up?" and the class looks around...

I think this bespeaks clear capture of the Administration's education policy makers by members of the Foundation for the Advancement of a Gay World Institute of Narnia (or FAGWIN). Breeders beware. Rod Paige is clearly a homo-terrorist operative.

(If this post offends you, send money and I'll stop)

Blackmun's Papers 

Justice Blackmun's papers have been released.

Apparently there's some juicy tidbits on behind the scenes deals over Roe and Casey, which would be seriously interesting to know about. I'm sure most of it has come out, but to have notes and documents is interesting.

I'd like to get a better look at some of this stuff, but I want to wait for someone with a little more knowhow than a reporter to sift through it and highllight the good stuff for me. I'm sure that's being done as we speak.

I can't wait to see Scalia's papers...

"Got milk from the store"
"Spit on Justice Breyer when he wasn't looking"
"Went hunting with litigant principle to a case up for review by the court, creating a massive conflict of interest"
"Flaunted that fact in people's faces while scoffing at requests for recusal and hiding behind Judicial sovereignty in ethics matters"
"Used biased textualism to provide a thin veil of doctrinal legitimacy to my otherwise hack opinions"
"Cloaked my skewed morality in marketspeak even more poorly than Posner"
etc.
etc.
etc.

(Actually, I'm sure he's as principled a man as Cheney...ahem...)

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Kerry for President 

So Kerry is the nominee.

I'm sad to see Edwards go, and I can only hope that the ticket will eventually read "Kerry/Edwards" so we can have a real stump-speaker out there getting the base riled up and ready to fight.

I'm not going to pretend to be thrilled about this, but that's the last time you'll here me say it.

I'm now a Kerry supporter, and I can't wait to have him as my president.


Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Iraq 

About that "good news" post.

Nevermind.

Shoulda known...

Monday, March 01, 2004

Pakistan 

In a continuing string of posts on Pakistan, this one is perhaps the most important.

This article (via Calpundit) shows Seymour Hersh suggesting that the likely explanation of our apparent acceptance of the Pakistani government's pardoning of a nuclear secret leaking scientist is the presence of a deal between the U.S. and Musharraf.

Basically the deal would look something like this: the U.S. allows Musharraf to issue the pardon (basically a political necessity) in exchange for allowing U.S. forces (perhaps not openly, but tacitly) to enter the Northwest region of Pakistan in search of Osama bin Laden.

I'd like to see Osama in chains as much as the next guy, but aren't we basically spending so much time and money trying to catch him so that we can prevent him from repeating 9/11 or worse, acquiring nuclear weapons and doing much, much worse? Why, then, are we basically turning our backs as a nuclear power that is supposedly our ally allows one of it's top scientists to spread nuclear secrets and materials to nations that we identify as rogue states that support terrorism?

The last paragraph is telling:

Robert Gallucci, a former United Nations weapons inspector who is now dean of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, calls A. Q. Khan “the Johnny Appleseed” of the nuclear-arms race. Gallucci, who is a consultant to the C.I.A. on proliferation issues, told me, “Bad as it is with Iran, North Korea, and Libya having nuclear-weapons material, the worst part is that they could transfer it to a non-state group. That’s the biggest concern, and the scariest thing about all this—that Pakistan could work with the worst terrorist groups on earth to build nuclear weapons. There’s nothing more important than stopping terrorist groups from getting nuclear weapons. The most dangerous country for the United States now is Pakistan, and second is Iran.” Gallucci went on, “We haven’t been this vulnerable since the British burned Washington in 1814.”

I think that's a little over the top, but the basic theme is all too true. If this is acting in our national interest, then I don't want our government to do that anymore.

Iraq 

Kevin Drum has a post on the good news coming out of Iraq. Does this make me happy? Yes. Do I think most of these things are good or could turn out to be good? Yes. (follow links in Kevin's post for "most of these things") Does this make me retroactively okay with the run-up to war and the method of its prosecution? Of course not.

Before you start calling me recalcitrant, realize that a few good collateral effects are not a good reason to make a flawed decision.

That said, it's nice to see some commentary on Iraq that can focus on the positive given that we're there and nobody with more than a few brain-cells is saying that we should get out today. As long as we're there and we've deposed a bad leader, it's nice to see there might be some more positivity to be sqeezed out of this.

I remain skeptical, however, that when all of this is over, it will be looked back upon as a good idea (at least by those with my misgivings and proclivities).

Talk about a luke-warm attempt at positivity, Christ. There's a reason I was ignoring foreign policy.

Texans for Medical Marijuana 

I assure you this is not the last you'll hear of this from me, but here's an introductory offer (expires never, but jump on it anyway)!!!

This summer I will be helping the new Texans for Medical Marijuana (TMM) project here in the great state of Texas. If you are at all inclined to help us out by keeping yourself informed through e-mail updates (but not too many), signing our petition, or even donating, click here.

Just so you can tell your friends, that URL is: www.texansformedicalmarijuana.org

Just say "no" to one word solutions!

UPDATE: New link added so you can visit anytime.

E-mail is Funny 

This study is pretty funny (if wholly statistically irrelevant and a total waste of time).

Reminds me of the time I was trying to send an e-mail to my friends at work about how my boss is, like, this crazy psycho bitch and I was, like, totally going to egg her house, and instead I sent it to my boss, her entire family, local authorities, and the Pope, who was, like, totally offended because my boss was all Catholic and stuff and then I got fired because my ex-boss the superbitch thought I shoulda been spending my time at work on "work-related matters." Gawd, what a riot!!!

But seriously, I did hear a rumor about a friend here at school that did something along these lines to pretty funny effect. I won't spread rumors, but it was a guy who was trying to send something to only guys about girls and sent it to the girls, too by accident. Isn't that funny?

Ah, fuck it.

Sunday, February 29, 2004

Whoa 

Much respect to the Baylor University student newspaper for demonstrating support for gay marriage. I can't help but express surprise at their stance. I hope this is indicative of a greater level of tolerance among younger conservatives, but I think it more likely demonstrates capture of the editorial board.

Now to take my anti-cynicism pills. God Bless the big pharmaceutical companies!!!

Creationists 

This shit is a mess. It's like these little battles are popping up all over the country. I thought Texans were nuts, but this shit ain't even in the deep South...

The ideological battle for control over our system of public education is one that has been raging at the local level for a long time now. Leiter posts on it regularly with greater efficacy and insight than I come close to mustering here.

I think the fight on school boards and campuses all over the country is another, preexisting front in the greater culture war that has its centerpiece currently in the gay marriage "debate", and a much more important one. It is the ability of social conservatives to organize at the local level and bring these challenges to rational thought that has made them powerful enough as a political force to have earned the pandering that is the Hate Amendment and it's inevitable progeny at all levels of government.

The ability of those on the side of "morality" to conflate advocating religious freedom (the non-sponsorship of any particular religion or its views by the state) with "secularism" (the supposed push by the godless to remove religion from society) is frustrating. The fight over public education and it's treatment of creationist views of the world must not be allowed to fall into this framework. Creationism is religion, whether or not the word "creation" has the word "science" tacked onto it as an erroneous and intentionally misleading afterthought. Whatever your view of the theory of evolution, the teaching of creationism, under any monicker, is state establishment of religion and contrary to our constitution and the values upon which this nation was founded.

(Note: Edited to be a real post instead of a half-assed one and then again moments later to make it coherent[ish])

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