Thursday, August 17, 2017

Actions like Charlottesville should not be condoned.

Taken in Charlottesville, a block from Emancipation Park, by @HouseofRuin

The Neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville was not covered by the First or Second Amendments as the above picture demonstrates.

The US Supreme Court decision, Presser v Illinois, 116 U.S. 252, 6 S.Ct. 580, 29 L.Ed. 615 (1886), made this clear:
It cannot be successfully questioned that the State governments, unless restrained by their own Constitutions, have the power to regulate or prohibit associations and meetings of the people, except in the case of peaceable assemblies to perform the duties or exercise the privileges of citizens of the United States; and have also the power to control and regulate the organization, drilling, and parading of military bodies and associations, except when such bodies or associations are *268 authorized by the militia laws of the United States. The exercise of this power by the States is necessary to the public peace, safety and good order. To deny the power would be to deny the right of the State to disperse assemblages organized for sedition and treason, and the right to suppress armed mobs bent on riot and rapine.
Presser needs to be brought back into the "Second Amendment Jurisprudence", although it seems to boggle the mind that anyone could claim an armed assembly to somehow fit within the definition of "peaceably assemble".

We can go a bit further to the claim about one belonging to an "unorganised militia" leading to Second Amendment rights, but Presser made it clear that neither Presser nor the Lehr und Wehr Verein "had no license from the governor of Illinois to drill or parade as a part of the militia of the state, and was not a part of the regular organized militia of the state, nor a part of troops of the United States, and had no organization under the militia law of the United States."

Presser made it clear that:
The right voluntarily to associate together as a military company or organization, or to drill or parade with arms, without, and independent of, an act of congress or law of the state authorizing the same, is not an attribute of national citizenship. Military organization and military drill and parade under arms are subjects especially under the control of the government of every country. They cannot be claimed as a right independent of law. Under our political system they are subject to the regulation and control of the state and federal governments, acting in due regard to their respective prerogatives and powers. The constitution and laws of the United States will be searched in vain for any support to the view that these rights are privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States independent of some specific legislation on the subject.
We can also get into the historic events which led to the adoption of the Constitution, one of which was Shays' Rebellion, along with the text of the Constitution to see that somehow trying to turn the "well-regulated militia" into a mob, which the insurrection theory does, is an absurdity.

The right needs to abandon its absurd interpretation of the Second Amendment, in particular that it somehow gives licence to rebellion.

Even more importantly, it needs to see where this absurdity has taken us. Time for this shit to stop.

See also:
The Chilling Effects of Openly Displayed Firearms

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Right-Wing Terrorism and Right-Wing Silence on Charlottesville

The GOP's continuing silence on Charlottesville is defeaning. The President made a false equivalency argument that both the left AND right operate with violence and therefore the blame for some guy driving his car into a crows was shared. However, I don’t recall the last time a leftist blew up an abortion center, killed a doctor performing legal services, knifed people standing up for teenage girls or blew up a federal building (or tried).

Claims of left wing accountability for what happened in Charlotte are absurd.  The left (improperly) attempts to squelch free speech, and I don’t support it, but they clearly are allowed to try and clearly are ALLOWED to boycott (like it or not). No one, though, is allowed to engage in premeditated acts of terrorism and intimidation. The left is not immune from engaging in violence, but it is rare compared to right-wing violence.  The GOP has falsely tried to claim the primary problem is a lack of civility on both sides, violence on both sides.  That is bullcrap, the primary problem is that the GOP, and more importantly conservatives has used dog whistle terminology to appeal to racism since the time of Reagan (and even before that if we include the writing of William F. Buckley - grandfather of modern conservatism).


The Anti-Defamation League’s site (a Jewish website focusing on anti-Semitic activities) notes:

“Over the past 10 years (2007-2016), domestic extremists of all kinds have killed at least 372 people in the United States. Of those deaths, approximately 74% were at the hands of right-wing extremists, about 24% of the victims were killed by domestic Islamic extremists, and the remainder were killed by left-wing extremists.” https://www.adl.org/education/resources/reports/murder-and-extremism-in-the-united-states-in-2016

Go read that again, 74% of ALL terrorism in the US over the past 10 years has been by right-wing extremists, 2% by left wing. That’s not equal, that’s not “Blackshirts”, it’s not left wing tyranny. It’s right-wing violence.

That's right, Right-Wing terrorism is 37 times more common that left-wing terrorism, and more than THREE times more common that Islamic terrorism.   The President cajoled President Obama for not calling it "Islamic terrorism" but Trump is SILENT on calling it right-wing terrorism. 

Bluntly, there is no equivalency at all and the GOP has no excuse for remaining silent on this issue.  The only reason they are silent or have been, is that appealing to racism works for them to help win elections.  They use those same dog whistles when they bring up "election fraud", blacks and Hispanics are voting twice, that's the only reason the GOP loses elections.  They are now seeing the fruits of their cowardice.  When you tell whackos that they should be afraid of their government and have rights to "defend themselves" from thugs, you have folks walking around with semi-auto rifles, having illegally invaded a US Government facility, staring down the ATF and FBI.  The GOP fails to call that out as crazy, but more importantly, it continues to bring up these dog whistles (like voter fraud) - and so we get right-wing terrorism like some crazy a$#ole driving a car into protesters.  No left-winger did that, no left-winger forced anyone to do that.  This wasn't retaliation, it was a pre-meditated act by a racist, fascistic Nazi and the GOP owns that lock, stock and barrel, there is no equal on the left.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Once again Penigma scoops the Mass Media on who "hacked" the DNC,

The Shingouz:

It sort of makes sense since nobody is taking credit for a leak.  It would have to be these crafty little critters from Mézières' and Christin's (and now Luc Besson) Valérian et Laureline. What else could so easily get away with stealing documents and then leaking them.

See:
Why Some U.S. Ex-Spies Don't Buy the Russia Story

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Addendum to Why I left the Democratic Party and went back to being independent.

I added this to the end of that Post:
It was also influential that the Clinton camp (and pretty much everybody) was pointing out that Trump would never win.  I can remember at least three predictions of a Clinton landslide.  Well, Clinton did get more popular votes, but the prediction of her winning was premature. I can say that most of the factors in my deciding to bolt from the Democratic party was due to their actions, not "Russian interference" of any sort. I think that goes for most people who voted for Third Parties.

Or just plain didn't vote.

Any real discussion of the election should try to address the real issues that led to Trump being President. Which would also include Clintonite overconfidence they would win (which they did as far as the popular vote goes, but the Electoral College needs to go).

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Why I left the Democratic Party and went back to being independent.

OK, Hillary Clinton wasn't the only reason, but her candidacy was the final revulsion in a long string of signs that the Democratic party didn't want, or care about my vote.

I can really start this timeline with when I read a quote from Jomo Kenyatta something along the line of "does having two parties make you twice as democratic as we are?" Kenya was a one Party State and western democracies, such as the US, were trying to push "multiparty democracy".

One of the cold war staples was "free and fair elections", which seems laughable after the 2016 Presidential election.

I came up with this a while back (probably after the Philadelphia DNC).
My timeline is:
1980--Supported Anderson, but ended up voting for Carter, who lost anyway.
2000--Gore wins the popular vote, yet doesn't become president
2004--The Candidate I wanted to vote for, Gen. Wes Clark, dropped out before I had a chance to vote for him.
2008--Clinton v. Obama--Obama won and the pact was made for 2016
2015--Clinton is chosen to be democratic nominee before any votes are cast.  Sanders is "drafted" by popular demand.
2016--Sanders does well to my surprise, but the system is totally rigged against him.
--AP calls the primaries for Clinton before the largest state in the Union, California, has voted along with 6 other states and territories.
--Between AP calling the election and DNC in Philly, it becomes obvious that I have no voice in the primary selection process and I DEMEXIT.
--DNC Philly makes it clear the Democratic Party isn't.
--Clintonite overconfidence that Trump will lose.

US parties are supposed to be "coalitions", but that doesn't really work and the Republicans have become the party of the "right" (I won't call it conservative since it isn't),  The Democrats the party of the "Left": although many progressives and liberals are showing disgust with the Democratic Party (as are a lot of  conservatives with the Republican Party).

Sanders was willing to take his candidacy to the end of the cycle.  I have to admit that I was surprised he did as well as he did.  But the Democratic Party isn't truly "democratic" and Clinton was the chosen candidate.  It was said that the Dems preferred to lose with Clinton than win with Sanders.

But it is the lack of democracy in the process and unwillingness of either party to address this problem which drove me to the Greens.  The Greens were the only party talking election reform.  After all, Clinton was more about the big donors than the little guy (as the Sanders phenomenon pointed out).

It is the continued scapegoating with silly theories about Russian involvement, when it is pretty obvious that what cost the election was the electoral college.  Neither third party candidate on their own stole the vote from Clinton either: numbers here.

Quite frankly, the reason I voted for Jill Stein over Hillary Clinton was that Stein was the only candidate who was addressing the issues I cared for: including election reform.  I am not sure whether people who supported Clinton really knew, or cared, what she believed in.  I say this because one of the incentives for writing this is a run in with a Clinton supported who somehow believed Clinton wasn't a hawk.

Quite frankly, I don't think it made a lot of sense to try and debate hardcore Clinton supporters because I am not sure what they thought about Clinton or her politics.  I only know I didn't like what I saw when it came to her policies. 

They weren't what I believe in.

Or that I could trust her.

The problem with the Russian scapegoating is that if you analyse it, you find that the real failures were from the Democratic Party.  But it's a lot easier to blame someone else than address the systemic failings of US politics.  And I won't be voting for the two major parties unless some drastic changes happen.

Quite frankly, it was not the Russians, Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein, or anyone beside the "Democratic" Party which drove me back into being independent.  I doubt I will bother with wasting my vote in a sham primary election (or showing much interest in that process).  Bernie and the Greens point out how much of a sham the current political situation is in the US, which is why I went with them.

Addition:

It was also influential that the Clinton camp (and pretty much everybody) was pointing out that Trump would never win.  I can remember at least three predictions of a Clinton landslide.  Well, Clinton did get more popular votes, but the prediction of her winning was premature. I can say that most of the factors in my deciding to bolt from the Democratic party was due to their actions, not "Russian interference" of any sort. I think that goes for most people who voted for Third Parties.

Or just plain didn't vote.

Any real discussion of the election should try to address the real issues that led to Trump being President.

See also:
The Democrats' performance as an opposition party? Pathetic