Ken Mehlman has put the word out to GOP elected officials and staffers in Washington:
No more gay orgies until after the November election.
GOP officials and staffers will still be permitted to view child pornography in the privacy of their own offices and homes, however, as long as physical contact is not established with the children in question.
All other kinds of porn and sexual activity are okay. This includes sex slavery, provided that it occurs only on the islands of Guam and the Marianas and not in the continental U.S. proper.
Ken Mehlman is also cautioning that, if you have a mistress, you delay violent sexual encounters until after voters have made their choices in the first week of November.
The administration declared Padilla an “enemy combatant,” put him in a military prison, and refused to charge him with any crime or even allow him access to a lawyer or anyone else. He stayed in a black hole, kept by his own government, for the next three-a-half-years with no charges of any kind ever asserted against him and with the administration insisting on the right to detain him (and any other American citizen) indefinitely — all based solely on the secret, unchallengeable say-so of the President that he was an “enemy combatant.”
The Bush administration finally charged Padilla with a crime (after 3 1/2 years of detention) only because the U.S. Supreme Court was set to rule on the legality of their treatment of Padilla, and indicting Padilla enabled the administration to argue that his case was now “moot.” The Government’s indictment made no mention of the flamboyant allegation they originally trumpeted to justify his lawless incarceration — that he was a “Dirty Bomber” attempting to detonate a radiological bomb in an American city (because the “evidence” for that accusation was itself procured by torture and was therefore unreliable and unusable). Instead, the indictment contained only the vaguest and most generic terrorism allegations. Since then, the federal judge presiding over Padilla’s case (in the Southern District of Florida) has repeatedly expressed skepticism over the Government’s case against him and has, on several occasions, admonished them to provide more specific information setting forth exactly what Padilla is alleged to have done.
Last week, Padilla’s lawyers filed a Motion to Dismiss the Indictment against him on the grounds that the Government has engaged in outrageous conduct — specifically, that they tortured him for the 3 1/2 years he remained in captivity, particularly for the almost 2 full years that they denied him access even to a lawyer. Via David Markus, a South Florida attorney who has been reporting on the Padilla proceedings on his local blog, Padilla’s Motion to Dismiss is here (.pdf). Markus excerpts a substantial part of the description of Padilla’s captivity, which is the first detailed account I have read of the treatment to which Padilla was subjected while in detention.
The herders of this remote mountain village know little about America, but have learned from those who run a US-funded aid program about the American God.
A Christian God.
The US government has given $10.9 million to Food for the Hungry, a faith-based development organization, to reach deep into the arid mountains of northern Kenya to provide training in hygiene, childhood illnesses, and clean water. The group has brought all that, and something else that increasingly accompanies US-funded aid programs: regular church service and prayer.
President Bush has almost doubled the percentage of US foreign-aid dollars going to faith-based groups such as Food for the Hungry, according to a Globe survey of government data. And in seeking to help such groups obtain more contracts, Bush has systematically eliminated or weakened rules designed to enforce the separation of church and state.
Bush made some of the changes by executive order only after failing to get Congress to approve them; the bill faltered in the Senate, where moderate Republicans joined Democrats in raising concerns about breaking down the barrier between government and religion.
“I got a little frustrated in Washington because I couldn’t get the bill passed,” Bush told a meeting of faith-based groups in March 2004. “Congress wouldn’t act, so I signed an executive order — that means I did it on my own.”
And domestically, the separation between church and state is gone as well:
At any moment, state inspectors can step uninvited into one of the three child care centers that Ethel White runs in Auburn, Ala., to make sure they meet state requirements intended to ensure that the children are safe. There must be continuing training for the staff. Her nurseries must have two sinks, one exclusively for food preparation. All cabinets must have safety locks. Medications for the children must be kept under lock and key, and refrigerated.
The Rev. Ray Fuson of the Harvest Temple Church of God in Montgomery, Ala., does not have to worry about unannounced state inspections at the day care center his church runs. Alabama exempts church day care programs from state licensing requirements, which were tightened after almost a dozen children died in licensed and unlicensed day care centers in the state in two years.
The differences do not end there. As an employer, Ms. White must comply with the civil rights laws; if employees feel mistreated, they can take the center to court. Religious organizations, including Pastor Fuson’s, are protected by the courts from almost all lawsuits filed by their ministers or other religious staff members, no matter how unfairly those employees think they have been treated.
I no longer see much difference between Iran and the USA…
You gotta love the contradictions in Washington. The head of a new conservative group named Americans for Honesty on Issues is a former advisor to Rep. Tom DeLay and Enron CEO Ken Lay.
Perfect material for Katrina’s “Dictionary of Republicanisms.”
The movie industry seems determined to continue on a course where it happily erodes the rights of legitimate users, all in the name of securing profits. The latest example of this comes in the form of a DVD copy protection technology called Protect DVD-Video which actually prevents a DVD being played on a Windows PC using Windows Media Player, Windows Media Center Edition or any software players based on DirectShow.
Protect DVD-Video is the brainchild of a company called ProtectDisc. Part of the copy-protection mechanism is a non-standard UDF (Universal Disc Format) file system which results in the IFO file on the DVD (this is the file responsible for storing information on chapters, subtitles and audio tracks) appearing to the PC as being zero bytes long.
The upshot of this is that if you have a DVD disc protected by Protect DVD-Video and you try to play the disc in a PC-based system using, say, Windows Media Player, the process will fail. Now, lets be clear here, we are taking about a genuine, legitimate DVD disc not working in a PC, not a pirated disc or a download via a torrent.