This article is a must read: And we’ve documented that torture creates more terrorists. Indeed, Salon notes: Among the most notable victims of torture was Sayeed Qutb, the founding father of modern political jihadism. His 1964 book, “Milestones,” describes a journey towards radicalization that included rape and torture, sometimes with dogs, in an Egyptian […]
For some reason we are immune to it. But family members, friends, and co-workers have changed. How did it happen? What can we do? We must stay together, hold hands, as RD always says, and keep ourselves safe. Maybe someday we can save the ones who haven’t drunk too deeply of the koolaid. Perhaps it’s some factor in our blood?
Be careful out there, Conflucians; and whatever you don’t don’t fall asleep!
The Confluence was founded by Riverdaughter as a safe, comfortable place – a refuge – for Hillary supporters to talk without being brutalized by Obama supporters. Now that the election is over the term, “Hillary Supporter” might not be the best description of a Confluencian — but we know who we are. And we still don’t want to be bullied.
This post is a notice that comments at The Confluence are moderated. Lying, spamming and/or regurgitating talking points is NOT tolerated*. And if you bully or harass the authors or commenters your comments may be deleted with or without notice.
Larry Johnson reports that he heard some gossip about Obama’s national security appointments at an event in DC last night.
Just got back from an event in Washington and had the chance to speak with some folks who are in the know about Barack’s national security team. Here’s the latest:
Secretary of State. JOHN KERRY. Here is the interesting background. Kerry called Hillary Clinton before announcing his endorsement. He said he would endorse her if she would promise him the SecState position. Hillary said no. Next stop–Obama town. Barack said yes and in early January John Kerry announced for Obama. So far so good. One minor problem. Barack made the same promise to Bill Richardson (please understand, Barack is not the first politician to promise different people the same thing). However, turns out two close associates of Richardson are under a sealed indictment expected to become public shortly. Ergo, John Kerry will be the new Secretary of State. Wes Clark ain’t even on the list.
It’s funny how the people who manage to make their way to the top seem to think it is O. K. to do it by stepping on the heads of the people who helped them get there. The passage of Proposition 8 in California, that defines marriage as between only a man and a woman, is the unpredictable fallout of the Obama victory. Christian conserverative African Americans and Latinos turned out to establish a new pecking order. Some of these people think that homosexuality is a behavioral choice even though there is a growing body of scientific evidence that it is not. And if it is not, then how does one reconcile a loving god with the mandate to be forever celibate, forever consigned to the role of child in the family, forever unable to have a loving partner and family?
For too long, religion has concentrated on proscriptions about sex, putting love, commitment and protection of families secondary. This is what Proposition 8 puts into law. It says, “We aren’t too concerned what you do after you are married, just as long as you have slot A and piece B. As long as your anatomical features are correct, you and your family are entitled to the full protection of the law. Gay couples and their children are not entitled to the full protection of the law because they might do something icky with their privates. Of course, heterosexual couples might do something icky with theirs as well but it’s legal because they’re married and therefore, none of our business.”
This is how the Obama presidency is starting. One group of people get their long awaited triumph and then turn around and screw another demographic. To those of us who have followed the campaign for months, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Obama made appearances with anti-gay people and made a point of reaching out to the evangelical community. What he did was surreptitiously court the bigots in the religious community over issues of homosexuality and abortion. He gave these groups tacit approval of their prejudices. What makes his behavior different than that of a Republican like George Bush? He got away with it because journalists completely failed us. (Listen to the post-election Fresh Air interview with Bill Moyers if you can stomach it. The blinders on these people need to come off and soon.)
This is not an auspicious start to the era of Hope and Change! There are persistent rumors that Larry Summers may be nominated as Secretary of the Treasury as well. This is the former president of Harvard that said that women are innately incapable of competing with men in math and science.* Science had some recent articles saying Larry is full of it. (pending citations) So, is the media going to pick up on this or are they going to continue to grind women to political pulp? We shall see. But if he appoints Summers, there’s a good chance that gay people won’t be the only ones protesting.
Anglachel covers Hillary’s newest initiatives. It looks like Hillary is going to be a burr in Obama’s saddle for a long time in the Senate. Take that Nancy! As Anglachel says:
I love her line: “We are in a recession and we must act decisively and wisely to change course, hasten a recovery, and reform the broken economic policies that will be the sad and disastrous legacy of the Bush Administration.” More of this, please. More nicely, sweetly partisan knife twisting to ensure that Bush is never spoken of without BartCop’s tag line – Worst President Ever.
*I just saw a reference to Larry Summers being a managing director of D. E. Shaw’s group. This is an unusual group founded by David Shaw, a biophysicist, who made a killing in the stock market. I’m not clear on how he did it but in the studies of proteins, there is a kind of sensitivity analysis that can be performed to observe what happens to a system when a small part of it is perturbed. A satellite group of his is involved in a program I use at work called Desmond, which calculates protein molecular dynamics. It kind of gives you a sense of what the hell their doing on Wall Street with all of the simulations. The thing is, the simulations are only as good as the understanding of the system they are supposed to model. Very interesting and very disturbing that Summers is tied to this group. It must drive the female computational modelers in Shaw’s group up a frickin’ wall.
Body: It's a relief to have a diagnosis, but it would be even more relief to have a cure! So, while I don't have cellulitis, or the antibiotics are killing it, and the aches and pains have mostly gone away, I do have what looks like a bad case of poison ivy on my right, or typing hand. So I'm asking for poison Ivy cures!
Avedon Carol and Stuart Zechman were the panelists on Virtually Speaking Sundays. First topic was generated by Matt Stoller's piece, previously referenced here, on Why the Democratic Party Acts The Way It Does. Other homework for that segment includes the DLC document "The Hyde Park Declaration: A Statement of Principles and a Policy Agenda for the […]