Monday, July 29, 2013

Six Ways The UnAmerican Conservative Movement is Pushing America To Become The Old Confederacy

1. The latest House budget. There is no single federal budget bill, but a series [14] of bills for combinations of different agencies. In 2013, House Appropriations Committee has been approving budgets that present some of the most draconian cuts seen [15] in a generation. This week saw the panel pass a budget [16] bill cutting the Environmental Protection Agency by 34 percent, including cuts to clean water programs by 60 percent. It gave the White House a quarter of what it sought for renewable energy and energy efficiency, and cut National Park funds by 10 percent and cuts national arts and humanities funding in half.

Earlier Committee budgets cut [17] in half funding for Community Development Block Grants, which is what cities use for housing and anti-poverty efforts. On Thursday, the Committee was expected to release its proposals for health, labor and education. A GOP staffer told [17] the New York Times that education grants to poor students will be cut by 16 percent, and the overall Labor Department will be cut by 13 percent.

This slash-and-burn spree goes beyond the so-called sequester for the current fiscal year ending on September 30, where every federal agency essentially swallowed a 5 percent across-the-boards cut. As Appropriations Committee Democratic Spokesman Dennis explained, the House GOP is continuing the “sequester” but taking the bulk of the funds from programs that they have long opposed: safety nets, environment, poverty, and a spectrum of agencies regulating business. 

The Times said [15] Congress has not faced such a big budget battle since 1995, when the House GOP tried to close the departments of Energy, Education and Commerce—and ended up shutting down the federal government for 28 days.

2. Holding Obamacare hostage. The October 1 implementation date for individuals to start enrolling in Obamacare (the first day of the 2014 federal fiscal year) has become another line in the sand for surly Republicans. Despite passage [18] in 2010, a Supreme Court decision upholding most of it, a presidential election where the healthcare reform was an issue and voters re-elected Obama, top Senate Republicans are now saying that they will not pass any budget bill that includes funding to implement the law. (American families love the benefits they deserve from Obamacare)

The Senate’s top GOP leadership and other senators have signed [17] a letter declaring, “The law cannot be implemented as written.” Whether this is just posturing—as single senators cannot block bills unless they have a majority—remains to be seen. It certainly signals to the House that there will be Senate support to gut funding for the law, which is consistent with the House Republican strategy of eviscerating programs and agencies they oppose.

The GOP’s intransigence needs to be seen against the backdrop of last week’s supposedly bipartisan deal [19] to approve a handful of Obama’s top agency heads. It hardly matters if these agencies have Senate-approved leaders if the GOP’s game plan is to defund and destroy these agencies’ effectiveness.   

3. Stonewalling federal judgeships. This summer’s budget battles only add to the already toxic atmosphere in Washington. Senate’s Republicans have also abused their power by delaying the appointment of federal judges nominated [20] by the White House. The American Bar Association’s president recently wrote an editorial [21] complaining about the large number of federal judge vacancies, calling it a worsening “emergency.”

The public doesn’t fully appreciate how powerful judges are. But senators do, knowing that they serve for life and will decide cases involving business and constitutional issues for a very long time. The Senate’s Republicans keep stonewalling, even though Obama’s appointments tend to be centrists [22]. They are not reflexively libertarian and pro-corporate like the current U.S. Supreme Court majority—or the activist attorneys behind the new rightwing propaganda machine profiled [13] by Mother Jones. This is yet another way in which intransigent Republicans are acting as if Obama did not win re-election.

4. Stopping immigration reform. The GOP, and especially the House majority, knows [23] their power will be diluted if more immigrants become citizens and vote. They also know that many industries rely on low wages for immigrant laborers, including people that [24] pay more in taxes than they receive in government services. But the House GOP will not take up a Senate immigration bill with amnesty and a decade-long path to citizenship. Even Fox News contributor, Republican Juan Williams, has derided [23] House GOP leaders as racist. He should not be surprised, because today’s Republicans are bent on retaining their power by any means, instead of persuading voters in open and fair elections.

5. The attack on voting rights. The game plan here is as old as Reconstruction: block your opponents from voting. After the Supreme Court’s recent ruling, Shelby v. Holder, gutting [25] the Voting Rights Act’s toughest provision that blocked racially discriminatory voting laws from taking effect, GOP-led states—North Carolina [26] this week and Texas [27] previously—have put forth bills to re-segregate voting and elections.

What North Carolina Republicans are pushing through their legislature this week is on par [28] with what Ohio’s GOP Secretary of State Ken Blackwell did before 2004, when his state re-elected President George W. Bush. Rick Hasen, a University of California law professor, wrote [29], “The bill is a nightmare for voting rights advocates: not only does it include a strict voter ID law and provision shortening early voting and eliminating same-day voter registration for early voting, it is a laundry list of ways to make it harder for people to vote.”

The Shelby decision gives the GOP room to plot redistricting scenarios to lock in safe seats in Congress and locally because the Justice Department’s threatened pushback is on untested [12] legal grounds. Texas Republicans quickly said [8] they would revise district lines, instead of waiting for the 2020 Census, as well as toughen state voter ID laws. These discriminatory steps in key states, coupled with the House GOP’s anti-immigrant bias, underscore the party’s defiant obsession with preserving its political power.

6. The attack on election regulators. Part of the attack on voting is an attack on election officials who were genuinely non-partisan, like North Carolina State Board of Election’s longtime director, Gary Bartlett. He was ousted [30] earlier this year after two decades on the job after a new Republican governor reconstituted the state BOE. Bartlett had spent years making [31] North Carolina’s election rules arguably the most progressive in the South. But the North Carolina GOP is also trying to end public financing for judicial elections, another successful anti-corruption program.
Why are conservatives going to all this trouble when they could just move to Iran or China where they already have repressive governments they do not respect basic human rights or democracy.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Americans Who Love Freedom Support Presidential Judicial Nominee Cornelia Pillard


Americans Who Love Freedom Support Presidential Judicial Nominee Cornelia Pillard

Fresh off of unsuccessful scare-mongering about the dangers of marriage equality, right-wing media are turning the clock back even further and attacking a highly qualified judicial nominee to the important D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals because of her academic writings on established sex equality law.

Started by Ed Whelan of the National Review Online and continued by anti-gay hate group leader Tony Perkins, a whisper campaign against veteran litigator and law professor Cornelia T.L. Pillard, President Obama's pick for the D.C. Circuit, has been spreading through right-wing media.

Whereas Whelan at least attempted to engage the legal arguments of a 2007 law review article in which Pillard explored how decades-old sex equality law is relevant to reproductive rights, other right-wing media are making even wilder and more inaccurate claims to smear the nominee as extreme when she is in fact solidly in the mainstream.

Perkins of the notorious Family Research Council, for example, made numerous errors in his attack on Pillard that, along with Whelan's rhetoric, is circulating on anti-choice websites and right-wing blogs.

Falsely ascribing a quote of conservative former Chief Justice William Rehnquist to Pillard in which he wrote for the Supreme Court that family leave policies not equally provided to both sexes are a "self-fulfilling cycle of discrimination," Perkins inaccurately described it as Pillard's condemnation of "celebrating motherhood." Where Pillard has observed that the anti-choice personhood movement could be exposed as unconstitutional by increasing awareness of the equal protection ramifications for pregnant women, Perkins fabricated the charge that Pillard "criticizes" the ultrasound. Resorting to spreading the ridiculous myth that Pillard would "declare" abstinence-only education "unconstitutional," Perkins managed to debunk such a silly charge in his very next sentence by quoting her accurate observation that a sex education class that stereotypes and disadvantages women could theoretically be "vulnerable to an equal protection challenge" under established precedent.

Finally, Perkins selectively quoted Pillard to characterize as "militant feminism" her argument that for women to have equal rights in the workplace, they need to be valued for more than their ability to bear children. From the actual full quote in Pillard's 2007 article:

A society in which women lack control to plan when they have children is one in which women must remain second-class citizens. We already know, and the Court recognized in Hibbs, that many employers assume that to be a mother is to be a primary caregiver with correspondingly less job commitment than a man, who is presumed to be an unencumbered "ideal worker." If impaired access to contraceptives hinders women's ability to exercise choice about when and whether to have children, it also reinforces broader patterns of discrimination against women as a class of presumptive breeders rather than reliable breadwinners and citizens.

Such transparent sexist hack work, however, tends to obscure the more disturbing aspects of the right-wing media smears against Pillard. These attacks are fighting battles on reproductive rights and sex equality that were lost by conservatives decades ago.

Subscribers to extreme right-wing legal thought have been complaining about the Supreme Court's confirmation that the U.S. Constitution protects reproductive rights since the decisions protecting a woman's right to contraception in 1965 and a woman's right to choose an abortion in 1973. For example, conservative Justice Antonin Scalia still has no problems publicly railing against these decisions, calling well-established reproductive rights doctrine and precedent "simply a lie."

In recognition of this half-century of conservative intransigence, the legal academy - and four justices of the Supreme Court - have been arguing for decades that some reproductive rights are also constitutionally cognizable under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, not just protected as fundamental rights of privacy and due process. That is, certain proscriptions on the control women have over their bodies and life choices are unconstitutional not just because it invades their autonomy, but also because such actions discriminate against them on the basis of sex.

Indeed, this combination of doctrinal privacy, due process, and equal protection has become so commonplace in Supreme Court jurisprudence that it is at the core of Justice Anthony Kennedy's last three decisions finding discrimination against the LGBT community and marriage equality to be an unconstitutional affront to dignity. Unsurprisingly, this newer application of equal protection enraged many of the exact same right-wing media outlets attacking Pillard now.

But at least these angry reactions to losing arguments against marriage equality and the development of constitutional equal protection law are current. Complaining about sex equality law and Rehnquist's condemnation of unconstitutional sex stereotypes is arguing against Pillard's nomination via time warp.

Ultimately, it's a bit lonely to be against choice, contraception, family leave, and comprehensive sex education - not to mention equal protection law - in 2013 America. Some in the right-wing media, however, seem to not care that they're running backwards with fewer people or judges willing to follow their failing arguments.

Smearing nominees like Pillard based on academic musings won't help.

Anti-American zealots would rather have another authoritarian freak like Scalia or Thomas because these far Right ideologues want to use bizarre legal arguments to make the USA more like feudal Europe of the 1600 when feudal lords had the last legal word on anything.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Presidential Hopeful and Full-time Sleazebag Rand Paul (R-KY) is Trying To Launder His Racist Past

Presidential Hopeful and Full-time Sleazebag Rand Paul (R-KY) is Trying To Launder His Racist Past
Jack Hunter, the Rand Paul social media staffer who wrote columns attacking Abraham Lincoln and defending Southern secession under the name “Southern Avenger,” tells the Daily Caller that he’s leaving the senator’s staff and returning to punditry to clear his name and avoid dimming Paul’s rising star. Even though Paul defended Hunter when the Washington Free Beacon broke the news of his long career of neo-Confederate race-baiting, Hunter says he must leave the senator’s payroll “to avenge his own honor,” the right-wing site reports [3].

“I’ve long been a conservative, and years ago, a much more politically incorrect (and campy) one,” Hunter told W. James Antle III of the Daily Caller News Foundation in an email (Antle identifies Hunter as a friend). “But there’s a significant difference between being politically incorrect and racist. I’ve also become far more libertarian over the years, a philosophy that encourages a more tolerant worldview, through the lens of which I now look back on some of my older comments with embarrassment.”

News of Hunter’s resignation broke just as the Washington Free Beacon was publishingmore samples of his racist commentary [4], from a CD he once sold on his own website, “Southern Avenger Smash Tracks: 20 Essentials, Vol. 1.” In one, Hunter compares Lincoln to Adolf Hitler and the South’s Civil War defeat to the Holocaust. “The sadistic policies and tactics of Abraham Lincoln destroyed the America of the Founding Fathers,” Hunter declared in one track. “And as I gaze at the picture on my wall of my great grandfather, who fought bravely against that sick bearded bastard, I still dream of what could have been — our glorious Confederate States of America….The reason we Southerners remember the war is because it does matter — just like slavery, just like the Holocaust.” In another track he says whites deserve a “long overdue” thank you from African Americans for ending slavery. “If it weren’t for white people, who knows how long slavery would have lasted?” he asked. “The very fact that slavery still exists today in African countries like Ghana and Sudan really makes one wonder.”

The Daily Caller’s tenderly written tribute to Hunter, composed before the latest Free Beacon revelations, let the former Paul staffer cast his Southern Avenger persona – in which he frequently appeared in a wrestler’s mask emblazoned with the Confederate stars and bars – as mere radio shock-jock pageantry. It also featured testimony to Hunter’s integrity by integrity-impaired GOP leaders like South Carolina Sen. Mark Sanford. “In all my dealings with Jack Hunter, I have found him to be most impressive, most professional and a committed conservative,” Sanford told Antle. “I think a lot of this has less to do with Jack Hunter than Rand Paul and 2016.”

Lucky Rand Paul gets to have it both ways: He stood up to those Northern aggressors and refused to fire Hunter, but he will carry less of Hunter’s baggage into the 2016 GOP presidential primary than if his neo-Confederate staffer fought on.

Still, he will carry some. Hunter’s editor at the Charleston City Paper, Chris Haire, revealed Thursday that his former columnist recently asked him to take down “dozens” of the controversial posts he’d written over the years, after he’d gotten wind of the Washington Free Beacon’s efforts to expose his pro-secession writings. Haire refused, but offered to publish “a column detailing how he’d changed his mind,” an offer Hunter declined. Calling Hunter’s request “cowardly,” Haire offered this assessment of his former writer’s real views:

    The Jack Hunter of the Charleston City Paper years was every bit as radical as the Jack Hunter of [radio station] 96 Wave. While a member of the City Paper’s stable of freelancers, Jack wrote in support of racially profiling Hispanics [5], praised white supremacist Sam Francis [6], blasted the House of Representatives’ apology for slavery [7], claimed that black people should apologize to white people for high crime rates [7], defended former Atlanta Braves pitcher and racist John Rocker  [8]and Charleston County School District board member Nancy Cook after she said some mothers should be sterilized [8], argued that Islam was an innately dangerous threat [9] to the U.S, professed that he would have voted for a member a British neo-Nazi political party if he could have, considered endorsing former Council of Conservative Citizens member Buddy Witherspoon  [10]in his bid to unseat Sen. Lindsey Graham, compared Abraham Lincoln toAdolf Hitler and Ike Turner [11], and continued to profess the erroneous claim that the primary cause of the Civil War was not the fight over slavery [11], ignoring the decades of American history leading up to war and South Carolina’s very own Declaration of the Immediate Causes for Secession [12], which clearly note that protecting slavery was the preeminent motivation of state leaders….

Funny how pass associations work with conservative-libertarians, they simply go away like magic when they become inconvenient. When those associations keep them from getting more unchecked power and more unearned income via tax payers, abracadabra, gone.

                                                     JASON DEREK BROWN

Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution - First Degree Murder, Armed Robbery

REWARD: The FBI is offering a reward of up to $200,000 for information leading directly to the arrest of Jason Derek Brown.

Neo-Nazi Police Cheif of Gilberton, Pa. Mark Kessler Really Hates America and Has The IQ of a Tree

Neo-Nazi Police Cheif of Gilberton, Pa. Mark Kessler Really Hates America and Has The IQ of a Tree

The mayor of Gilberton, Pennsylvania is standing by her city’s police chief despite a series of profanity-laced and threatening videos.

In a video that has received wide attention, police chief Mark Kessler repeatedly tells those upset by his use of profanity to “go f*ck yourself” as he fires various automatic weapons.

Mayor Mary Lou Hannon told The Morning Call that Kessler had the right to express himself. The city would “not take action to quash free speech, whether or not each member of council or any member of council agrees with it.”

Kessler has uploaded several profanity-laced videos to YouTube. In one video, Kessler berates “libtards” and warns of an armed rebellion against the government.

“F*ck all you libtards out there, as a matter of fact, read my shirt,” he says, turning around to show a message on his back which read, “Liberals take it in the a**.”

“You take it in the ass and I don’t give a f*ck what you say so you can all just go f*ck yourselves. Period. I wont be going to D.C. and I don’t give a f*ck. If you f*cking maniacs want to turn this into an armed revolt, knock yourselves out. I’m not about that, so see you on the other side.”

In a video on basic pistol defense, Kessler repeatedly shoots a picture of scary clown, which he says is Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).

Note the confederate insignia on Kesslers' shirt. In his wacky view of patriotism the wrong side won the Civil War. he is also upset because he feels, very deeply, that someone is out to take all his guns. Gun sales are at an all time high. Gun laws have never been more lax. The gun lobby won't even allow Congress to pass modest gun safety laws like limiting magazine sizes to eight bullets. Kessler, in other words is another paranoid freak, who only cares about his gun fetish, not his country. More here, Pa. police chief loves guns, profanity, birtherism, Alex Jones, militias, anti-Semitic rock music and serving on the board of education. For those who do not know who Anti-American wacko Alex Jones is, here is a start.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Goldman,Using The Conservative-Libertarian Model, Made $5 Billion By Manipulating Inventories of Aluminum

 Goldman,Using The Conservative-Libertarian Model, Made $5 Billion By Manipulating Inventories of Aluminum

What sexual favors were exchanged so that the New York Times blunted the impact of an important, detailed investigative story on Goldman profiteering, this time in the aluminum market, by releasing it on a heat-addled summer Saturday?

On a high level, the story sets forth a simple and damning case. Not all that long ago, banks were prohibited from being in operating businesses. But the Federal Reserve and Congress have loosened those rules and big financial players have gone full bore backward integrating from commodities trading into owning major components of the delivery and inventorying systems. This doesn’t just give them a big information advantage by having better access to underlying buying and selling activity. It allows them to manipulate inventories, and thus, prices. And Goldman’s aluminum henanigans increased prices all across the market, not just for the customers who chose to use them for warehousing and delivery.

The article A Shuffle of Aluminum, but to Banks, Pure Gold by David Kocieniewski, tells us that the newly-permissive rules allowed Goldman to buy Metro International Trade Services, a concern in Detroit with 27 warehouses that handles a bit over 25% of the aluminum available for delivery. And here’s where the fun and games begin:

    Each day, a fleet of trucks shuffles 1,500-pound bars of the metal among the warehouses. Two or three times a day, sometimes more, the drivers make the same circuits. They load in one warehouse. They unload in another. And then they do it again.

    This industrial dance has been choreographed by Goldman to exploit pricing regulations set up by an overseas commodities exchange, an investigation by The New York Times has found. The back–and-forth lengthens the storage time. And that adds many millions a year to the coffers of Goldman, which owns the warehouses and charges rent to store the metal. It also increases prices paid by manufacturers and consumers across the country…

    Before Goldman bought Metro International three years ago, warehouse customers used to wait an average of six weeks for their purchases to be located, retrieved by forklift and delivered to factories. But now that Goldman owns the company, the wait has grown more than 20-fold — to more than 16 months, according to industry records.

    Longer waits might be written off as an aggravation, but they also make aluminum more expensive nearly everywhere in the country because of the arcane formula used to determine the cost of the metal on the spot market. The delays are so acute that Coca-Cola and many other manufacturers avoid buying aluminum stored here. Nonetheless, they still pay the higher price.

The Times’s sources estimate the price impact across the market at 6 cents per pound, which adds $12 to the price of a typical car. Goldman piously claims it obey all the rules, but obeying the rules is far from operating in a fair or pro-customer manner.

The last thing conservatives and rightie libertarians want is a competitive market. They want total control and anyone who suggests using some regulation to stop that control is quickly gang piled on as a liberal pinko communists.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wal-Mart Proves They Are Not a Business, They're a Conservative Plantation

Wal-Mart Proves They Are Not a Business, They're a Conservative Plantation

There's a power struggle going on between the D.C. city council and the world's largest retailer, one that Wal-Mart is likely to win.

There's a power struggle going on in Washington right now, not between Republicans and Democrats but between Wal-Mart—which is supposed to open six stores in the District—and the city council, which has a bill pending to require big-box retailers to pay a living wage. As you surely know, Wal-Mart was built on keeping costs as low as possible, particularly labor costs. The model Wal-Mart recruit is someone who has no other employment options and will take whatever they can get. The retail colossus isn't going to let some uppity city council tell it how much it can pay its employees:

    The world's largest retailer delivered an ultimatum to District lawmakers Tuesday, telling them less than 24 hours before a decisive vote that at least three planned Wal-Marts will not open in the city if a super-minimum-wage proposal becomes law.

    A team of Wal-Mart officials and lobbyists, including a high-level executive from the mega-retailer's Arkansas headquarters, walked the halls of the John A. Wilson Building on Tuesday afternoon, delivering the news to D.C. Council members.

    The company's hardball tactics come out of a well-worn playbook that involves successfully using Wal-Mart's leverage in the form of jobs and low-priced goods to fend off legislation and regulation that could cut into its profits and set precedent in other potential markets. In the Wilson Building, elected officials have found their reliable liberal, pro-union political sentiments in conflict with their desire to bring amenities to underserved neighborhoods.

For Wal-Mart, this isn't just about these particular stores. They can make money even if they pay a higher wage at these stores, and with over 10,000 stores around the world, the D.C. locations are a drop in their enormous bucket anyway. It's about their relationship both to the people they employ and to the communities they locate in. It's about power, and as far as they're concerned, power has to reside with Wal-Mart. Their employees do what they're told and get paid what they're told, and if they don't like it they can go find another job. By the same token, the city council gives Wal-Mart what it wants, and if it doesn't they can try to find somebody else to open a store there.

My guess is that in the end, either the city council will cave or Mayor Vincent Gray will veto the bill (he says he's considering it). Why? Because Wal-Mart can walk away from the D.C. stores without a second thought, while the council desperately wants both the jobs the stores will bring and the ability for their constituents to have a convenient place to shop. One side has virtually nothing to lose, while the other side has a great deal to lose.

Would Wal-Mart make less money if they paid their employees a little more? Not necessarily. There are other models out there, most notably Costco and Trader Joe's, which believe that by giving their employees higher wages and good benefits, they can reduce turnover and provide better service, which lowers costs and increases sales. And it works: they've achieved steady growth and excellent profits by making their employees happy.

The owners of Wal-Mart, the Walton family have a set in cement attitude about who deserves what. They are worth more than 40% of the population that earns at or below median income, that means they are worth about $89 billion dollars. They could easily pay every employee a living wage, but they believe it is their God given right to run a wage slave plantation. The Waltons and their conservative supporters do not care about American values, they care only about wealth and the power that goes with it..

Friday, July 12, 2013

Why Does Texas Rep. Jodie Laubenberg (R) Hate America and Low Income Women

Why Does Texas Rep. Jodie Laubenberg (R) Hate America and Low Income Women
Over the past several weeks, thousands of Texas activists have been protesting their GOP-controlled legislature’s decision to push through a controversial package of abortion restrictions. Nonetheless, the anti-abortion bills are successfully advancing this week. The Texas House gave preliminary approval to the legislation on Tuesday evening — after Rep. Jodie Laubenberg (R), the bill’s sponsor, kicked off the debate by prominently displaying a pair of baby shoes “to represent aborted babies who can’t speak out against the procedure.”

Laubenberg has been thrust into the national spotlight amid the ongoing protests over Texas’ proposed abortion bill. And, even as the rest of the country continues to follow the contentious debate in the Lone Star State, the Republican lawmaker has steadfastly refused to back down from her stringent anti-choice agenda. For more than nine hours on Tuesday, Democratic lawmakers attempted to tweak the abortion legislation. They suggested adding an exception for victims of rape or incest, adding an exception for Texans who can prove they didn’t receive accurate sex ed, and repealing the provision that will force abortion clinics across the state to close, among other changes — but Laubenberg rejected each one.

But it’s hardly the first time that the GOP lawmaker from Parker, TX has stubbornly staked out an extreme position. Laubenberg, who ran unopposed in the 2012 election, has a long history of far-right politics in the Texas legislature:

    She’s ranked the third most conservative member of the Texas House.

    The Texas Conservative Coalition gives Laubenberg a 94.15 out of 100 on the “comprehensive TCC scorecard,” which rates lawmakers on their right-wing credentials. That’s the third highest score among all the legislators in her chamber, securing Laubenberg a place in the conservative group’s “Member Spotlight” hall of fame. She joined the state’s Tea Party Caucus in 2010, and she was one of a handful of representatives endorsed by the Texas Tea Party in the 2012 elections.

    She recently claimed rape kits are a form of abortion.

    During Texas’ first special session, Laubenberg attempted to defend the fact that her proposed 20-week abortion ban didn’t include an exception for rape victims. “In the emergency room they have what’s called rape kits where a woman can get cleaned out,” Laubenberg claimed on the House floor, suggesting that rape kits include an optional abortion procedure. In fact, rape kits collect DNA evidence that could be useful in a criminal investigation, and are completely unrelated to pregnancy. The AP reported that Laubenberg “has difficulty debating bills” and chose to remain silent during the rest of the discussion about her abortion legislation, rejecting all future proposed amendments to the bill without speaking.

    She accused Texas’ budget board of using “government math” when it pointed out that cutting family planning funds would lead to more unplanned births.

    In 2011, when the Texas legislature approved deep cuts to family planning programs, the state’s Legislative Budget Board warned lawmakers that decision would have some financial consequences. The government estimated that funding affordable contraception would save Texas $80 million in its next two-year budget because fewer babies would be born to low-income women enrolled in Medicaid (a health outcome that the Health Department regularly measures). “We’re going to save on the non-babies that are being born? We’re going to prevent baby births?” Laubenberg responded. “This has got to be government math.”

    She argued that low-income pregnant women shouldn’t get government-sponsored prenatal care because their fetuses aren’t born yet.

    Laubenberg has been arguing in favor of her proposed abortion restrictions under the logic that life begins at conception. “If you believe that (a fetus) is a human being, then that human being also has rights, and we must protect that baby’s rights,” Laubenberg said earlier this month. But she doesn’t necessarily take that stance when it comes to poorer women’s fetuses. In 2007, she proposed requiring pregnant women to wait three months before becoming eligible to receive prenatal and perinatal benefits under the Children’s Health Insurance Program. When Democratic Rep. Rafael Anchia pointed out that change would kick more than 95,000 low-income women — and their unborn children — out of the government program, Laubenberg responded, “They’re not born yet.” When Anchia suggested her amendment wasn’t pro-life, Laubenberg yelled at him — but later withdrew her amendment.

    She backs unconstitutional legislation to allow Texas to defy federal gun regulations.

    It’s already harder to get an abortion than it is to get a gun, but Laubenberg wants to keep furthering the divide. As just one of many pro-gun advocates in the Texas House, she recently sponsored a bill that would allow firearm and ammunition manufacturers operating inside Texas to exempt themselves from federal gun laws. She also co-sponsored an even more far-reaching proposal that would make enforcing federal gun laws a felony in Texas. Laubenberg’s positions on gun issues have earned her a 92 percent approval rating from the NRA.

    She’s the state chair for ALEC in Texas.

    Perhaps unsurprising given her legislative positions, Laubenberg serves as Texas’ state chair for ALEC, the right-wing group that coordinates conservative legislation across different states. The lawmakers who are appointed to state chairmen positions help recruit new members for the group, as well as help push ALEC’s draft legislation — like measures to ban paid sick days, eliminate environmental protections on public lands, allow the use of deadly force for self-defense, bust unions, and ultimately further corporate interests — toward approval in their states.

Jodie Laubenberg is taking us back to the days of the Confederacy, claiming that some Americans have the right to deny other Americans dominion over their own bodies. Jodie, Rick Perry and other anti-American Texas conservatives have passed legislation that will increase dangerous illegal abortions. In her view of what rape kits are, Jodie displays the kind of willful ignorance that one usually finds in radical Islamic fundamentalists - so hey Texas, Jodie and her conservative radical friends just made Texas more like Iran. ALEC is known to be the real life version of the corrupt sleazy money+power organizations we see in political thrillers. They bypass the democratic process, humanity and common decency by buying legislators like Jodie and the legislation they want passed. What is the difference between Jodie and Confederate president Jefferson Davis or between Jodie and the supreme ayatollah of Iran? Not much.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Conservatism, The Movement of UnAmerican Neo-Confederates

Top,    Here's Jim DeMint laughing it up with the neoconderate who wrote his book

Neo-Confederate Rand Paul Aide A Daily Caller Contributor, Fox Regular

Jack Hunter, a congressional aide to Sen. Rand Paul with a history of "neo-Confederate" and "pro-secessionist" views, has produced dozens of articles and video commentaries for The Daily Caller and appeared as what one Fox Business host termed a "regular" guest on that network. He also helped then-Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), currently the president of The Heritage Foundation, write his most recent book.

The conservative Washington Free Beacon reported today that Hunter, a "close" Rand Paul aide who also co-wrote the Kentucky Republican's 2011 book, "spent years working as a pro-secessionist radio pundit and neo-Confederate activist ... Hunter was a chairman in the League of the South, which 'advocates the secession and subsequent independence of the Southern States from this forced union and the formation of a Southern republic.'"

Free Beacon also quoted Hunter's South Carolina radio commentary under the pseudonym "The Southern Avenger" in which he expressed adoration for Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth, indignation that white Americans are treated to a "racial double standard," and opposition to Spanish-speaking immigrants. Hunter reportedly "told the Free Beacon that he no longer holds many of these views," including his pro-Lincoln assassin views, but "declined to say that he no longer supports secession."

Free Beacon further reported that "[d]uring public appearances, Hunter often wore a mask on which was printed a Confederate flag"

Monday, July 8, 2013

Conservatives Love America So Much They're Making America More Like Chile

Conservatives Love America So Much They're Making America More Like Chile

An 11-year-old Chilean girl who has become pregnant from rape is renewing a contentious debate over abortion in the conservative Catholic country, where the medical procedure is illegal under all circumstances. Doctors have warned that continuing the pregnancy will be dangerous for the 11-year-old’s health, as well as for the health of her fetus. But, under Chile’s total abortion ban, she is forced to continue it anyway.

The young girl is now 14 weeks pregnant. Her mother’s boyfriend has confessed to sexually abusing the child over the past two years, and is now in custody.

Abortion was legal in Chile under some medical circumstances until Gen. Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship instated a total ban in 1973. The current conservative administration has remained firmly opposed to loosening the harsh ban. According to the Santiago Times, Chile is now one of just six countries in the world — including Vatican City — with such stringent anti-abortion laws.

But now that the 11-year-old’s case has been made public, Chileans are beginning to push for change. Some opponents have started an online petition to demand legal abortion access in cases when the woman has been raped or when the woman’s health is at risk.

“It’s the first online petition I’ve signed in my life, but I think this case really deserves it. I hope this case serves as precedent to have a serious discussion about abortion,” Eduardo Hernandez, a 30-year-old Chilean web designer, told the Associated Press. “When I heard about this little girl, my first reaction was to support abortion because I think it’s the best option in this case.”

This past year, the Chilean Senate rejected three different bills that would have loosened the total ban. But some of Chile’s presidential candidates have indicated that they support amending the abortion law. Former president Michele Bachelet, who is emerging as a front-runner in the country’s upcoming election, confirmed on Twitter that she would work to decriminalize abortion for rape victims if she is elected.

Yet, apparently modeling themselves on the governing principles of Chilean dictators, governors Rick Perry and Scott Walker, with the backing of their authoritarian comrades in their state legislature, are making the USA a little more like Chile.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

UnAmerican conservative libertarian activist Adam Kokesh thinks the only Constitutional right that matters is a loaded shotgun

UnAmerican conservative libertarian activist Adam Kokesh thinks the only Constitutional right that matters is a loaded shotgun

The libertarian activist Adam Kokesh who called for and then canceled an armed march on Washington uploaded a YouTube video on July 4 that shows him loading a shotgun in the center of Freedom Plaza, Washington, D.C, near the White House. In the video, Kokesh cryptically warns, “We will not allow our government to destroy our humanity. We are the final American revolution. See you next Independence Day.”

...Kokesh, who has also compared himself to Gandhi, has even implied violence as the end result. “Should one whole year from this July 4th pass while the crimes of this government are allowed to continue, we may have passed the point at which non-violent revolution becomes impossible,” he said in a statement.

So Kokesh thinks the 2nd Amendment, the one about a well "regulated" militia is the only right worth killing people for. Note he shows no support for the right to free speech or the rights enumerated in the 4th Amendment. he would love living in Iran where the only right they have is the right to have an assault weapon.