“Conservative” ideology never helps any one except those in power who want to oppress those who may take it away or disagree with them. Whether in Israel, the USA, Germany or Australia, this is true, because that is what conservatism does and is.
God vs. Gay?: The Religious Case for Equality
Publication Date: October 25, 2011
“The myth that the Bible forbids homosexuality—the myth of “God versus Gay”—is behind some of the most divisive and painful conflicts of our day. In this provocative, passionately argued, and game-changing book, scholar and activist Jay Michaelson shows that not only does the Bible not prohibit same-sex intimacy, but the vast majority of its teachings support the full equality and dignity of gay and lesbian people, from the first flaw it finds in creation (“It is not good for a person to be alone”) to the way religious communities grow through reflection and conscience. In short, Michaelson observes, religious people should support equality for gays and lesbians—not despite their religion, but because of it.
With close readings of the Hebrew Bible and New Testament, the latest data on the science of sexual orientation, and a sympathetic, accessible, and ecumenical approach to religious faith, Michaelson makes the case that sexual diversity is part of the beauty of nature and that the recognition of same-sex families will strengthen, not threaten, the values religious people hold dear. This is an important book for anyone who has wrestled with questions of religion and homosexuality: parents and pastors, believers and skeptics, advocates of “gay rights” and opponents of them. Whatever your views on religion and sexual diversity, God vs. Gay is a plea for a more compassionate, informed conversation—and a first step toward creating one”.
An Indiana teacher who says she was fired from a Roman Catholic school for using in vitro fertilization to try to get pregnant is suing in a case that could set up a legal showdown over reproductive and religious rights.
Pass this on to your anti-Democratic Party, anti-Secularist, anti-Liberal Friends:
“We in the United States, above all, must remember that lesson, for we were founded as a nation of openness to people of all beliefs. And so we must remain. Our very unity has been strengthened by our pluralism. We establish no religion in this country, we command no worship, we mandate no belief, nor will we ever. Church and state are, and must remain, separate. All are free to believe or not believe, all are free to practice a faith or not, and those who believe are free, and should be free, to speak of and act on their belief.”
“We must never remain silent in the face of bigotry. We must condemn those who seek to divide us. In all quarters and at all times, we must teach tolerance and denounce racism, anti-Semitism, and all ethnic or religious bigotry wherever they exist as unacceptable evils. We have no place for haters in America — none, whatsoever.”
~ Ronald Reagan, Speech to Temple Hillel and Community Leaders in Valley Stream (October 26, 1984)
“She has eighty names, thirty addresses, twelve Social Security cards and is co…llecting veteran’s benefits on four non-existing deceased husbands. And she is collecting Social Security on her cards. She’s got Medicaid, getting food stamps, and she is collecting welfare under each of her names. Her tax-free cash income is over $150,000. You may know her as West Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama, Alaska, Montana, or South Carolina.”
Source: Elitist Liberal Scum
Zimbabwe president to youth: Shun Western values
By Associated Press, Feb 27th 2012
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe wound up a week of celebrations marking his 88th birthday with a lavish gathering Saturday, Feb. 24, where he urged the nation’s youth to shun Western values, homosexuality, and greed.
Liberia’s Senate to consider anti-gay bill
By Associated Press, Feb 27th 2012
Liberia’s Senate will consider a bill to strengthen the nation’s existing anti-gay laws, a senator said, as another West African nation, Cameroon, announced the arrest of 10 women suspected of being lesbians.
Uganda police shut down meeting of LGBT activists
By Associated Press, Feb 21st 2012
An LGBT activist in Uganda says that the country’s ethics minister, accompanied by police, broke up a meeting of gay participants on Feb. 14.
UN chief: Africa leaders should respect gay, lesbian rights
By Associated Press, Feb 2nd 2012
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says African nations should stop treating gay men and lesbians as “second-class citizens, or even criminals.”
by Frank James, April 13, 2012
When President Obama recently complained to news media executives about their ostensibly even-handed “pox on both of your houses” coverage of the partisan battles in Washington, it might have seemed like, well, a partisan shot from a Democratic president.
After all, his complaint was that the GOP had moved so far right, and intransigently so, that it was wrong to create a false “equivalence” by blaming both parties equally for the Washington gridlock. To a skeptic that comment, coming from a Democrat, sounded suspiciously partisan itself.
But while the president was making the kind of argument you would expect of the nation’s top Democrat, he actually had the support of science — well at least political science research that maps that rightward GOP shift.
Keith Poole of the University of Georgia, with his collaborator Howard Rosenthal of New York University, has spent decades charting the ideological shifts and polarization of the political parties in Congress from the 18th century until now to get the view of how the political landscape has changed from 30,000 feet up. What they have found is that the Republican Party is the most conservative it has been a century.
US Politics AMERICAblog News:
By John Aravosison 4/26/2012 08:19:00 AM
Is the battle over student loans shaping up as a rerun of the payroll tax cut fight, which by all accounts badly damaged the GOP? Consider the parallels. Just as in the payroll tax cut battle, there’s a looming deadline: On July 1st, interest rates on federally funded student loans is set to double. Barack Obama and Democrats, confident that the politics are on their side, are signaling that they intend to remain on offense on the issue.
“You know who else wanted kids to go to college? Hitler. Kidding. But only just. This is sadly typical of the radical fringe running today’s Republican party. Every thing they don’t like is socialism (which, to their simple minds means, of course, Soviet communism). And everything they do like is Reaganism (even if Reagan, but today’s GOP standards, would be a socialist)”.
By David, April 03, 2012
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Monday said that President Barack Obama had taken his war on faith to the next level by wanting to establish a new “religion” for the purpose of rejecting all religious doctrines.
At an event in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a supporter asked the candidate what the Obama administration’s motive was for mandating that the health insurance provided by all religious institutions cover contraceptives for women.
“I think there is in this country a war on religion,” Romney replied. “I think there is a desire to establish a religion in America known as secularism.”
“They gave it a lot of thought and they decided to say that in this country that a church — in this case, the Catholic Church — would be required to violate its principles and its conscience and be required to provide contraceptives, sterilization and morning after pills to the employees of the church. … We are now all Catholics. Those of us who are people of faith recognize this is — an attack on one religion is an attack on all religion.”
From ThinkProgress– here’s three of the eight:
1. Bush passed a huge tax cut plan, mostly benefiting the wealthy. Romney’s tax cut plan is four times larger, more heavily weighted to benefit ultra wealthy.
GEORGE W. BUSH: Passed $2.5 trillion in tax cuts over 10 years, 12.5% benefiting the top 1/10 of 1%. [ThinkProgress, 2/22/12; David Cay Johnston. 3/1/12]
MITT ROMNEY: Proposing $10.7 trillion in tax cuts over 10 years, 33% benefiting the top 1/10 of 1%. [ThinkProgress, 2/22/12; David Cay Johnston. 3/1/12]
2. Bush signed the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law. Romney supports repealing virtually all campaign finance laws.
GEORGE W. BUSH: Signed into law the landmark McCain–Feingold campaign finance reform, which put restrictions on “soft money” and limitations on spending from outside groups. [White House, 03/27/02]
MITT ROMNEY: Strongly defended the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, which overturned key provisions McCain–Feingold. Supports repealing virtually all campaign finance laws. [Mitt Romney, 2/18/10; ThinkProgress, 12/21/11]
3. Bush supported comprehesive immigration reform, a path to citizenship for 12 million undocumented immigrants and provisions of the DREAM Act. Romney opposes all of it. GEORGE W. BUSH: Supported comprehensive immigration reform, including a path to citizenship for 12 million undocumented immigrants and provisions of the DREAM Act. [Reuters, 6/29/07; White House, 10/24/07]
MITT ROMNEY: Opposes comprehensive immigration reform and opposes providing a path to citizenship to undocumented immigrants and the DREAM Act. [Fox News, 04/03/12; ABC, 12/31/12]
A blitz of warrantless surveillance and imprisonments without trial
Edited by Jim Hightower and Phillip Frazer
The founders (made of much stronger stuff than today’s political harpies) believed that genuine security for a democratic people comes from strengthening their right and ability to resist the autocratic impulses of the authorities. By deliberately placing “secure” in this key Bill of Rights passage, they certainly did not intend for it to be twisted into a meek call for ever-expanding police power to “protect” the citizenry, but instead to give citizens essential legal guarantees to protect themselves from police power.
It wasn’t political theory that shaped their phrasing–it was rough, real-life experience with King George III’s security forces. Thus, they wrote with unmistakable conviction: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause….”
Edited by Jim Hightower and Phillip Frazer
Producing a profit is not the purpose of government– its purpose is service. And for two centuries–from 1775, when the Continental Congress chose Benjamin Franklin to be our fledgling nation’s first Postmaster General–until 1971, when Richard Nixon’s Postal Reorganization Act took effect–America’s nationwide network of post offices was fully appreciated as a government service.
In fact, the Post Office Department was considered such an important function of public affairs that it was explicitly authorized by the founding document of our nation’s government (Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution). The founders would’ve laughed their wigs off had anyone proposed that the existence of such an essential civic agency be dependent on its profitability. Be efficient and fiscally responsible, yes, but the bottom line for the Post Office was delivering a public service for the good of all the people.
But, Nixon happened. His presidency gave laissez-faire ideologues a long-sought opening to insert blasting caps into the structural framework of government. Their first big success was the 1971 “reform” that shattered the public service model by imposing a bottom-line profit mentality on the agency and installing a corporate form of governance over it. “Run it like a business,” was the political demand of the right-wing think tankers, Nixonians, and congressional fixers.
A corporate “foreign legion” has taken over America’s intelligence and military functions
April 2012, Volume 14, Number 4
Edited by Jim Hightower and Phillip Frazer
On the last day of last year, Austin’s daily newspaper led with a story that it tagged as an “Internet Privacy” report. “Hackers leak Stratfor data,” hollered the front-page headline in bold type.
It’s likely that 99.9 percent of readers had never heard of Stratfor, Inc. (including me), and the story really wasn’t all that newsy. The main point seemed to be that the hack attack was pulled off by Anonymous. This amorphous global collective of incognito, anarchistic “hactivists” has shown a remarkable techno/ politico ability and agility, having penetrated deeply into the supposedly secure computer networks of a wide range of big targets, including Visa, the Church of Scientology, Monsanto, the Egyptian government, Universal Music, the Justice Department, the Tunisian government, Sony, PayPal, and the Bay Area Rapid Transit system.
According to the story, the group had grabbed and publicly released 860,000 email addresses and 75,000 credit card numbers of the obscure firm’s customers. While this swipe certainly could be a pain for the customers and an embarrassing mess for Stratfor, such computer invasions are hardly uncommon these days, and this one didn’t seem to be very large or significant (perhaps the story’s front-page placement stemmed from an editor’s civic pride: “By gollies, our little city is big enough to be hit by Anonymous.” More likely, Stratfor got top billing because this was a Saturday, New Year’s Eve paper with mighty slim pickings for news).