Monday, March 28, 2005

Elian Gonzales and Terri Schiavo

"Selective Restraint," by John Fund, Opinion Journal, 28 March 2005, http://www.opinionjournal.com/forms/printThis.html?id=110006480 (from Drudge Report).

Amid the sloppy arguments and emotional appeals of the Terri Schiavo case, John Fund has wise words.

The sad case of Terri Schiavo has raised passions not seen since five years ago. Then another bitterly divided family argued in Florida courts over someone who couldn't speak on his own behalf: Elian Gonzalez.

In both cases, those who were unhappy with the courts' decisions strained to assert the federal government's power to produce a different outcome. The difference is that in Mrs. Schiavo's case, Congress backed off after passing a bill that merely asked a federal court to hear the case from scratch, something that U.S. District Judge James Whittemore declined to do. By contrast, those who wanted the federal government to intervene in Elian Gonzalez's case went all the way, supporting a predawn armed federal raid on the morning before Easter to seize the 6-year-old boy despite a federal appeals court's refusal to order his surrender.

Both cases were marked with hypocrisy and political posturing galore. Both times some conservative Republicans talked about issuing subpoenas to compel the person at the center of the case to appear before Congress; they swiftly backed down when public opinion failed to support their stunt. Rep. Barney Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat, argued that by opposing Elian's return to his father in communist Cuba, conservatives were abandoning the principle that "the state should not supersede the parents' wishes." In the case of Terri Schiavo, many conservatives who normally support spousal rights decided that Michael Schiavo's decision to abandon his marital vows while at the same time refusing to divorce his wife rendered him unfit to override the wishes of his wife's parents to have her cared for.

But liberals have gotten off easy for some of the somersaulting arguments they have made on behalf of judicial independence and states' rights to justify their position that Terri Schiavo should not be saved. Many made the opposite arguments in the Elian Gonzalez case.


Well said. If one believes in law-courts and states rights, then Attorney General Reno was wrong to seize Elian Gonzales. If one believes in law-courts and states rights, then Mike Schiavo has the power to make decisions for his wife.

Fund closes with a quote by Governor Bush

According to some reports, Gov. Jeb Bush considered seizing Mrs. Schiavo, à la Elian, and taking her to a hospital so she could be fed. But he did not do so. "I've consistently said that I can't go beyond what my powers are, and I'm not going to do it," the governor says. Janet Reno and the Clinton administration showed no such restraint when it came to Elian Gonzalez.


Exactly right. Stop the madness. Bush in 2008!

Thursday, March 24, 2005

The Running Suicide of the American Tory Party

"GOP uses Dean's Nashville visit to tweak Bredesen," by Bonna de la Cruz, Tennessean, 22 March 2005, http://www.tennessean.com/government/archives/05/03/67252324.shtml?Element_ID=67252324 (from Doug Petch).

Republicans in Al Gore's homestate of Tennessee are trying to tie their Tory Democrat governor to Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean

Democratic Party chairman to speak at Vanderbilt today

Tennessee Republicans are using a two-day Nashville visit by Howard Dean as a backdrop to link Gov. Phil Bredesen with a liberal agenda.

The GOP is airing a radio commercial today and tomorrow that describes the Democratic governor as ''peas in a pod'' with Dean, national chairman of the Democratic Party, who is pegged as a ''Northeastern liberal.''


Of course, Governor Bredesen stands up for his boss

The governor has no problem with Howard Dean coming to Tennessee,'' Bredesen spokeswoman Lydia Lenker said. ''He has a sincere desire to reach out to Southern voters.'' She declined to respond to the radio ad.


Oh, wait, no he doesn't

Dean and Bredesen will not meet, citing scheduling conflicts. They have met twice in the last several weeks at other meetings, both said.

''I wonder why Phil Bredesen won't meet with Howard Dean?'' said Bob Davis of Nashville, who is chairman of the state Republican Party.

''I'm guessing that even Bredesen wants to distance himself from Dean's liberal agenda.''


No public meeting with the very public head of the national party. Sounds like the Democrat Party has a winner!

Monday, March 21, 2005

Herseth, Republican Hacker?

"Unsung Hero of 2004 Campaign," by Raider, Argus v. Thune, 19 March 2005, http://argusvthune.blogspot.com/2005/03/unsung-hero-of-2004-campaign.html.

"Herseth ID Program," by John Lauck, South Dakota Politics, 20 March 2005, http://southdakotapolitics.blogs.com/south_dakota_politics/2005/week11/index.html#a0004026005.

"Herseth ID Program," by Chad M. Shuldt, Clean Cut Kid, 21 March 2005, http://www.cleancutkid.com/2005/03/21/herseth-id-program.

"The comments about a 'virus' definitely are suspicious," by Dan, Clean Cut Kid, 21 March 2005, http://www.cleancutkid.com/2005/03/21/herseth-id-program.

"** Exclusive ** DCCC Sources Confirm: Herseth Approved "Masking" Plan," by Raider, Argus v. Thune, 21 March 2005, http://argusvthune.blogspot.com/2005/03/exclusive-dccc-sources-confirm-herseth.html.

"Covering Her Right Flank," by Jon Schaff, South Dakota Politics, 21 March 2005, http://southdakotapolitics.blogs.com/south_dakota_politics/2005/week12/index.html#a0004031162.

medium_daschle_captured_sm.jpg
Tom Daschle
Ex-Senator, Wanted Fugitive, and Computer Crime Victim?


The news broke.. did Representative Herseth (D-SD) unleash a virus against Senator Daschle (D-SD)?

Herseth instructed Cari to initiate a complicated computer subterfuge on the Daschle Voter ID program. Using a cryptic formula developed by a Cari staffer - the Herseth campaign downloaded a "virus" into the South Dakota Democratic voter turnout program that "masked" Thune/Herseth voters as Daschle/Herseth voters.


CCK was very dubirous

Before I go further, readers of this site need to understand I worked for Senator Daschle during the 2004 campaign. In fact, I managed the computer program that is being discussed. I knew exactly how many Daschle IDs were on that file from hour to hour as results from the field were being data entered into the system. The field staff, who had responsibility for a given area or county, were well aware of how many voters they had ID’d as Daschle supporters — they had to because they were responsible for reporting their numbers nightly. We took this very seriously — to the extreme. Accountability was the mantra of the field program. Add to this the fact the organizers were always running new lists, calling and knocking their voters every night. We talked to voters so much, the organizers literally had personal relationships with them — if a block of voters suddenly shifted allegiences, it would not have gone unnoticed.

With that said, there were constant checks in place on the data itself. Server logs were reviewed daily — sometimes spending up hours tracking down suspicious activity, and talking to the users in question when necessary. When something looked out of place, we reconstructed the situation and were able to verify that nothing out of the ordinary was happening. The scrutiny placed on activity increased exponentially as Election Day neared.

The bottom line here is that what some are saying is simply not true. If what is being written were true, there would have been a sudden “jump” in the number of ID’d Daschle supporters on the voter file — this never happened. It would have raised eyebrows late in the campaign for a myriad of reasons. The field staff would have asked questions about why it had happened because of their obsession with their own numbers and meeting their goal. When management looked at their daily reports, they would have noticed the shift right away; and everyone one would have been skeptical because we knew what our capacity for IDing new supporters was.


medium_daschletom-sad.jpg
The Silent Pain of Political Computer Crime?


as was I

The comments about a “virus” definitely are suspicious. Similar to claims about “hacking” in Congressional computers. Probably someone did something, and they are describing it with a a scary-sounding, tangentially related, but incorrect word to an ignorant public.


Now, instead of "virus," it's called "masking" -- but what does that mean??

Washington D.C. sources close to DCCC Mastermind Peter Cari - confirm that Rep. Stephanie Herseth (D-SD) personally approved the computer software "masking" program that allowed resources dedicated to the re-election of former Majority Leader Thomas A. Daschle (D-SD) to turn out Thune/Herseth voters.

In the rising storm of controversy - sources say Herseth was stinging from her experience in 2002 where operatives running Sen. Tim Johnson's (D-SD) GOTV turned out scores of Johnson/Janklow voters. Herseth vowed this would never happen again.


Herseth feud with Daschle goes back...

Another insider says that Herseth was angry in 2002 when the Johnson campaign, run by the same folks who ran the 2004 Daschle campaign, refused to get out Herseth/Thune voters in order to save Johnson's hide by 500 votes. Perhaps this time, Herseth wasn't taking any chances.


Possibly because Herseth is a Republican?

medium_herseth_nra.jpg
Stephanie Herseth, National Rifle Association Endorsee


Stephanie Herseth voted "Yea" on the bill staying the death of Terry Schiavo.


Update: More on South Dakota Politics. Now it's a virus masking uploading with a cryptic tag

In addition, we also have a Thune-Daschle-undecided ID for each of those 20,000 people (who are either supportive of Stephanie or undecided). DCCC apparently sold to the Daschle campaign the positive Daschle IDs. But, our data also includes approximately 7,000 probable ticket-splitters (Thune-Herseth). We have not shared this data with the Daschle campaign. My puzzle is to figure out how to utilize those 7,000 ticket-splitters without sharing them with the Daschle campaign. I may upload them onto the Daschle database – but with a cryptic tag.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

South Dakotan War on Terrorism (CCK: Daschle is a Traitor)

"Box Elder, South Dakota's Next Ghost Town?," by Seth Hahn, Clean Cut Kid, 16 March 2005, http://www.cleancutkid.com/2005/03/16/box-elder-south-dakotas-next-ghost-town/.

The word "patriotism" comes from the Greek word "patrios" -- Fatherland. In Latin, "patrios" became "patria." Patria" is commonly translated as "one's country," as in the poem, "Dulce et Decorum est Pro Patria Mori" (It is sweet and fitting to die for one's country). But "fatherland" is still a better translation. If the land is a father, then all males of the land are brothers: the patria is also a fratria -- the Fatherland is a Brotherland. Not brothers in the biological sense, nor in the sense that I love Aaron and Rob as brothers, but nonetheless real brothers. Fellow citizens are brothers in the land.

The attacks of September 11th did not target South Dakota, and it is very unlikely that further al-Qaeda attacks would. But South Dakotans still have obligations to protect their brothers in New York and every other place where our enemies may attack. Only a terrible man would sacrifice his brothers' safety for a small gain. Like the ancient traitors who opened city gates to enemy intruders, a man who steals his brothers' security for silver is a failure.

Then why is new Clean Cut Kid Seth Hahn implying that Daschle was such a man?

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has just nominated former Nevada Congressman James Bilbray to the Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC). As Minority Leader, Reid has the privilege of selecting one of the nine-person commission. The Las Vegas Review Journal reports that defense experts say that “nation still has 25 percent more military base capacity than needed and $7 billion more might be saved.”

While this means that Nellis Air Force Base and Fallon Naval Air Station are safe, Ellsworth’s future, and the economic well-being of Western South Dakota are not so certain. State officials have recently “launched an all-out campaign to keep the base open” in an attempt to keep the $267 million in annual revenue that Ellsworth brings to the area.

It sure would be nice to have the Senate Minority Leader campaigning for us.


I would say it would be nice to have fratriots who love their brothers campaigning for the safety of us all.

In a comment, "Charley" says the same thing less poetically

Instead of our selfish, knee-jerk efforts to save Ellsworth as we bitch about the deficit and/or taxes we should look at whether or not it even makes sense to continue the base in SD.


Update: Seth continues his realistic attack on soldiers. Now, who does that remind me of in this book...?

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Daily Kos Award for Civil Discourse

"Reid versus Kerry," by kos, Daily Kos, 9 March 2005, http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/3/9/142359/4530.

Unlike certain statements on Democratic Underground, this is not a comment. This is part of an above-the-fold post on the front page of daily Kos.

Since some of you missed the problem with Kerry -- he wants to present a social security "plan" so Democrats can "[seize] the middle ground in the Social Security fight." In reality, we don't have to present shit, since the GOP can't even prove there's any sort of threat requiring imminent attention.


Not that this is kos's first run-in with life outside the basement. After the desecration of bodies in Fallujah...

Let the people see what war is like. This isn’t an Xbox game. There are real repercussions to Bush’s folly.

That said, I feel nothing over the death of merceneries. They aren’t in Iraq because of orders, or because they are there trying to help the people make Iraq a better place. They are there to wage war for profit. Screw them.

16:30 Posted in Blogosphere, Democrats | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: daily kos, kerry

Monday, March 07, 2005

The Sinking Ship of the American Tory Party

"Public Support for Iraq War Collapsing: Majority of Americans want to Bring Some Troops Home ," by Juan Cole, Informed Consent, 6 March 2005, http://www.juancole.com/2005/03/public-support-for-iraq-war-collapsing.html.

"Richardson Praises Bush's Mideast Policy," Associated Press, 7 March 2005, http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=544&ncid=703&e=6&u=/ap/20050307/ap_on_go_pr_wh/richardson_mideast (from DU).

"Flash: Chris Matthews...," Drudge Report, 7 March 2005, http://www.drudgereport.com/ (from DU).

First, the shocker (while it's still news to anybody)

FLASH: CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC: The 2008 presidential campaign will not include Al Gore. I'm reporting here tonight that the former vice president and 2000 presidential nominee will not run for president in 2008. I've been given this scoop from a perfect source, I must say, who informed me that the purpose of this disclosure at this time is to end speculation about a campaign that will never occur.... Developing..


medium_al_gore_howard_dean_moment.jpg
Al Gore imitating Howard Dean


And word from someone 2008 probably will include:

Support for President Bush (news - web sites)'s mission of spreading democracy throughout the world, especially the Mideast, is winning accolades from an unlikely source — New Mexico's Gov. Bill Richardson, a prominent Democrat often mentioned as a possible presidential candidate.

Richardson, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and energy secretary under President Clinton, on Monday cited Syria's promise to lower the profile of its 14,000 troops in Lebanon as a "very significant" result of U.S. pressure.

The presidents of Syria and Lebanon announced Monday that the Syrian troops would be pulled back to eastern Lebanon's Bekaa Valley by March 31.

"I believe the Bush administration deserves credit for putting pressure and saying that authoritarian regimes have to go," Richardson said on NBC's "Today" show. Bush's stated mission of spreading democracy around the world "is working, whether it's by design or by accident," he said.

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Bill Richardson with Sun-Disk
Seal of the State of New Mexico, or Papist Hagiography?


Saying "I told you so" on President Bush's Second Inaugural would be a waste of time. Instead, the real analysis:

Gore bet big on the Torification of the Democratic Party. Like Nixon in 1964, he prepared himself for a second chance by endorsing a wingnut candidate. He bet that the fever would last until at least the primaries, giving him time to wrap up the nomination.

He chose poorly.

The successful Iraqi election and Lebanese intifada have collapsed the political center's opposition to Bush's Middle East policies. Baghdad Spring is a time for Baghdad Rules.

How can this be, if Juan Cole says the public is increasingly suspicious of the Iraq War?

Because politicans are not stupid. They are forward-looking. They play to the crowds of election day. Historically moderate Clintonistas are now shouting their sympathy for the war and preparing to save the ship. And Howard Dean's ilk are drowning.

Domestically, we supporters of the Iraq War have strategic despair on our side. Good.

19:40 Posted in Democrats, Juan Cole | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: chris matthew

Clean Cut Kid: South Dakota's MyDD

"Signing Off," by Chad M. Shuldt, Clean Cut Kid, http://www.cleancutkid.com/2005/03/06/signing-off/, 6 March 2005.

Since I started blogging, I have used Clean Cut Kid as a resource. From speed limits to agriwelfare to abortion, he was a realiable source of Democrat partisan news from the Sunshine Mount Rushmore State.

His farewell post:

Dear Readers,

I am taking a (temporary or permanent — yet TBD) hiatus from daily writing on this site. I’ve taken a new job that involves politics and I will be working with different candidates and issues around the country. This would limit my ability to post on said candidates and issues, so I believe the best thing is for me to walk away and figure out how this fits together.

The new job, of course, will take up considerable time; leaving precious little of it to spend with my wife and three kids. I think I’d rather be spending that time with them than my computer screen.

I am considering farming out the site to someone who may be interested in writing here. It is a “somewhat” established blog — four months — with a strong traffic pattern established (averaging nearly 2000 unique visitors daily). If you or someone you know is interested, please send me an email with a writing sample. I will be upfront and say that I would prefer to turn the keys over to someone with a similar political bent.

This has been fun, and a great learning experience. I’ve also met a huge number of people through email conversations rooted from the site. I will continue to be in touch with you. And this is also not to say I will never be back here or anywhere else.

Best Regards,

Chad.


Under Chad, CCK was The Coyote State's own MyDD. They had the same strengths: timely updates on political news and everything affecting the strengths of the parties. They both had the same weaknesses. Both favored personal attacks. Likewise, both were harmed by their lack of ideology. While it is important not to be ideologically bigoted, CCK and MyDD both reflexively took the anti-Bush / anti-Republican side of an issue with very little thought.

But I checked CCK every day. I still do, hoping he will have "just one more" post. The Chinese Ringneck Pheasant State will miss Clean Cut Kid.

Johnson's the next Dayton? (Tim Deep in Debt)

"Sen. Tim Johnson is over $40,000 in debt," by Raider, Argus v. Thune, http://argusvthune.blogspot.com/2005/03/sen-tim-johnson-is-over-40000-in-debt.html, 6 March 2005 (from South Dakota Politics).

Maybe Tim Johnson's pseudonym is Fiscal M. Prudence?

Gov. Rounds inner circle have been circulating some interesting FEC information. While Thune sits on a war chest of over $1.6 million (and is the process of raising more funds for like minded candidates) - the state's senior Senator seems to have run into a little cash flow problem. View the FEC records here ( http://herndon1.sdrdc.com/cgi-bin/cancomsrs/?_04+S6SD00051) it is 75 pages long - but to save time just look at the summary page of $15,000 in cash on hand and $64,000 in debts.


Some simple math...

Johnson typically starts slow with fundraising as Daschle has always been there to turn on the spigot as Johnson would draft of his fundraising machine. Rounds inner circle points out that Johnson will need to raise $110,000 a day for the next 3.5 years to raise Daschle like numbers. No one from Rounds inner circle will go on the record - but they are not shy about pointing this out.


Given the super-popularity of Mike Rounds, and Tim's history as Tom's today, is there any doubt we will soon have Senator Rounds?

The history of financially wasteful midwestern Senators implies Tim might not even bother to run....

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Washington State Election Remains Stolen

"Rossi Team Issues List of 'Felon' Voters," Seattle Times, 4 March 2005, http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2002196617_felons04m.html (from The Corner).

More news from Kyiv on the Pacific

Attorneys for Republican Dino Rossi yesterday released the names of more than 1,000 people who allegedly cast illegal votes in November's disputed gubernatorial election.

The list of alleged felons, people who voted twice and dead people recorded as voting is at the heart of a lawsuit Republicans filed to overturn the November election of Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire.


A quick Times' investigation seems to support the felon-voters claim:

A check by The Seattle Times of 32 of the 1,135 names on the list found one case that appeared to be in error, and one that was unclear. The others appeared to be properly included on the list.


Like the 1960 Kennedy-Nixon race or (possibly) the 2002 Johnson-Thune race, this appears to be another election stolen by the party of Gore.

Sigh.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Party of Jackson v. Democratic Underground

"Sen. Clinton Urges Punishment For Syria Discussion Thread," by Devlin Barrett, "chlamor," et al, Democratic Underground, http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=102x1276161#1276340, 1 March 2005.

"Al From says Dems must 'reject Michael Moore and the MoveOn crowd' Discussion Thread," by Elizabeth Wilner, "RealDems," et al, Democratic Underground, http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=132x1630278#1630677, 1 March 2005.

Almost as sexy as a Korean phone model, a Super Bowl ad model, or a Secretary of State... a liberal war hawk

Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton called Tuesday for tougher punishment against Syria, saying the country was aggressively supporting terrorism in the "dangerous neighborhood" of the Middle East.

In lambasting Syria, Clinton joined a growing chorus of officials in Washington urging the United States to take a harsher stance against that country following a Feb. 14 bombing in Beirut that killed the former premier of Lebanon.

...

Both Iran and Syria were cause for alarm, but Clinton said Syria deserved special attention.

"I've been particularly troubled by the Syrians' aggressive posture," said Clinton. "We need to send a very clear message that we will not tolerate what we believe to be and have reason to know is the continuing support for terrorism that comes out of Syria and Iran."

Clinton, considered an early front-runner for her party's nomination to the White House in 2008, has asked the Bush administration to toughen economic sanctions against Syria.

She was followed to the stage by Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who hinted that Syrian President Bashar Assad may find it difficult to hold onto power amid the push for greater democracy in neighboring Lebanon.


Not that DUers are happy about it

Hardrada:

Hilary, guess what?
They have room in the Hague for you too. And your cell is being prepared.


NNN0LHI

Bullshit!!
We have our own legal system in place to punish war criminals like her when the day comes. And when that day comes I will be celebrating.


Ironically, the paranoid are more civilized. Maybe they believe the rude are sent to Gitmo?

Baclava:

Or a prelude?
To her version of..."The Draft"?


Meanwhile, the call to purge Michael Moore and MoveOn

"You've got to reject Michael Moore and the MoveOn crowd," DLC CEO Al From said in an interview about how the Democratic Party should rebuild after 2004. From argued that the anti-war Moore and MoveOn have hurt the party on national security, the issue which he says the party needs to make "central to our cause." Rank-and-file Democrats "are more like us than MoveOn," which From called a group of "elites, people who sit in their basements all the time and play on their computers."


jdots:

who the hell is this clown ?
I will respect repukes when they respect humanity,till them Al go join the the neocons and admit that you are a clueless sell out<.


And, again, the politely paranoid...

Hell Hath No Party:

My signature line...
says it all about ol' Al and his ilk.

I have become utterly convinced through the amazing reseach done here by many DUers that the current incarnation of the DLC and its leadership is a backdoor attempt by the RW powers that be to further destroy the Democratic Party of the people, and create one ruling elite under the guise of two parties.


Last but not least, the ever-mandatory "Republicans are Anti-American"

Al-CIAda:

Fuck him. How DARE his corporate appeasement, anti-American
Christo-fascist
ass, try to devide the party using opposition talking points.
FUCK HIM!



and "Republicans are Nazis" comments

Kinkistyle:

Social Democrat: "Must show more respect for Hitler and Nazi Party"
Thats what Al From sounds like to me. Like a Social Democrat in Weimar Republic Germany urging his party to show Hitler and the National Socialists more respect.