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Today is Bill of Rights Day

Today is Bill of Rights Day

Today is Bill of Rights Day. To Americans, the Bill of Rights are key amendments to the U.S. Constitution, that protect our individual rights.

[Source, Holiday Insights]

I find it without irony that the US Senate has passed a bill allowing the indefinite detention of US citizens and that the House of Representatives appears ready to pass the bill, and on this very day the House Judiciary Committee is ready to make a vote on SOPA which will dramatically alter the Internet and people’s rights on the Internet.

I like this quote:

It is a curious way to celebrate the 220th anniversary of the Bill of Rights.

[Source, JONATHAN TURLEY, Happy Birthday, Bill [of Rights]: Obama Breaks Promise To Veto Bill Allowing Indefinite Detention of Americans]

See also:

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Ron Paul Speaks the Truth!

I have to hand it to Ron Paul. Rick Santorum, attacking Ron Paul, gets applause while showing his ignorance of US foreign policy. When Ron Paul explains, Ron Paul gets boo’d. This exemplifies how Republicans govern on fear and how the Republican audience fails to comprehend the more complex issues at hand.

Let me rephrase:
Ron Paul speaks, we have bases on their sacred land, we mistreat the Palestinians, over the past decade we’ve killed thousands of their people. Audience reacts with boos.
Rick Santorum, Republican poster child, speaks, they hate us because of our lifestyle. Audience reacts with cheers.

Are the American people really that full of themselves?

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Yes, Republicans Are Ruining America

And here’s the statement that sums it up:

In the long run, however, Democrats won’t be the only losers. What Republicans have just gotten away with calls our whole system of government into question. After all, how can American democracy work if whichever party is most prepared to be ruthless, to threaten the nation’s economic security, gets to dictate policy? And the answer is, maybe it can’t.

[Source, The New York Times, The President Surrenders by PAUL KRUGMAN]

I am deeply troubled by the state of politics in America. Our Congress is embarrassing. Our President needs a backbone transplant. The Tea Party needs history and economic lessons. The Republicans need morals. The middle class and poor need a champion. And I need antacid.

Maybe this would help!

And here’s some more:

Anyone who characterizes the deal between the President and Republican leaders as a victory for the American people over partisanship understands neither economics nor politics.

[Source, Business Insider, Anyone Who Thinks The Debt Deal Is A Victory For America Understands Neither Economics Nor Politics by Robert Reich]

See also I’m a Canadian watching the whole "debt crisis" from the outside – I was just wondering: Why aren’t there mass protests over what is happening? Your politicians are blatantly subverting your democracy for a quite blatant corporatist agenda. Good question!

And from CNN’s Republican David Frum:

I’m a Republican. Always have been. I believe in free markets, low taxes, reasonable regulation and limited government. But as I look back at the weeks of rancor leading up to Sunday night’s last-minute budget deal, I see some things I don’t believe in:

  • Forcing the United States to the verge of default.
  • Shrugging off the needs and concerns of millions of unemployed.
  • Protecting every single loophole, giveaway and boondoggle in the tax code as a matter of fundamental conservative principle.
  • [Read more…]

There was another way. There still is.

  1. Unemployment is a more urgent problem than debt.
  2. The deficit is a symptom of America’s economic problems, not a cause. … Cut the deficit first, and the economy will get even sicker.
  3. The time to cut is after the economy recovers.
  4. The place to cut is health care, not assistance to the unemployed and poor. … The problem is that Americans pay too much for the medicine they use.
  5. We can collect more revenue without raising tax rates.
  6. Passion does not substitute for judgment.
  7. You can’t save the system by destroying the system.

[Source, CNN, Wake up GOP: Smashing system doesn’t fix it]

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To the members of US Congress

(full size)

Seen at

It is comforting to know that am emergency team of 8th-grade civics teachers has been dispatched to Washington!

WASHINGTON—With lawmakers still at an impasse over increasing the debt ceiling, a special team of 40 eighth-grade civics teachers was air-dropped into Washington earlier today in a last-ditch effort to teach congressional leaders how the government’s legislative process works. [READ MORE]

[Source, the ONION, Emergency Team Of 8th-Grade Civics Teachers Dispatched To Washington]

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My State Representatives Do Not Represent Me

Tennessee House Rep. Julia Hurley (R-Lenoir City) said, "I don’t understand why it’s news, and I don’t want to talk about the desk."

Tennessee House Rep. Julia Hurley (R-Lenoir City) has confirmed that she carved her initials into her desk in the state legislature. … this childish display is indeed pretty disappointing — and she isn’t the only one who’s done it, as there are other initials and dollar signs carved into the House’s desks.

[Source, BoingBoing, Tenn. state rep: "I carved my initials in my desk in the House, but I don’t understand why it’s news"]

Representative Hurley, allow me to explain. Your vandalism of public property is news. It demonstrates your lack of respect for your position and your standoffish, it doesn’t matter, response is suggestive of how you may chose to ignore your constituents.

I was twelve years old, not 29, the last time I carved my initials into something. It was a hand rail at a Disney World ride during an excruciatingly long wait. But after being scolded, I felt bad and was apologetic. I realized the wrong I had done in choosing to vandalize. Perhaps Representative Hurley would do well to learn from a child that we accept our wrong doings and apologize.

Why does this matter? Because as an elected official, she reflects upon every person of Tennessee. When people outside of TN learn that I am from TN, their first impression of me is established by the news of Representative Hurley’s, or Stacey Campfield’s et al, actions and legal decisions. Also, if Rep. Hurley does not approach her job with more professionalism, and let’s face it–carving in desks is something middle schoolers do, how can we expect her to approach legislative decisions?