Friday, 4/2/10, Public Square


Filed under The Public Square

12 responses to “Friday, 4/2/10, Public Square

  1. Zippy

    Wow, I missed this. My apologies if it was already posted.

    Some great news for the Bill of Rights, privacy, and non-ideological common sense (of the variety minimally required to come in from the rain):

    Federal Judge Finds N.S.A. Wiretaps Were Illegal
    Published: March 31, 2010

    WASHINGTON — A federal judge ruled Wednesday that the National Security Agency’s program of surveillance without warrants was illegal, rejecting the Obama administration’s effort to keep shrouded in secrecy one of the most disputed counterterrorism policies of former President George W. Bush.

    Two points: my Congressional rep’s support of the State Secrets Act (i.e. an act sponsored by Patrick Leahy to curb the indefensible “state secrets” quashing of, ya know, the even-initiation of legal proceedings, sans any facts) is one reason why a Blue Dog will get my vote in November.

    Secondly, some may remember that the Times co-author of this article, James Risen, was one of the reporters who broke the story in 2005 in the first place.

    Judith Miller and war-cheerleading aside, if the Times goes under, we are in serious trouble. I recognize the irony in saying that as I link to free content.

  2. Zippy

    P.S. I recognize that Ms. Giffords voted for the creepy law in the first place, as did someone else we know. I’ll take sudden outbreaks of common sense (or even convenient political posturing) when I can get them, remembering the climate that has been created in this country.

    I’m half-expecting Holder to appeal (sigh).

  3. PrairiePond

    Holder appeal? Well, it wouldnt be out of character given this.

    “Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water, the Obama Justice Department has done it again. The first brief defended Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) with a tone-deaf vigor that was simply shocking. This time the brief is in response to the Log Cabin Republican case against “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Once again not content to do a pro forma response, the Department of Justice seems to go out of its way to support DADT before the Courts.

    Joe Sudbay at has highlighted some of the points of the brief which is breathtaking in some of the language it uses. For example,

    Because Congress could rationally have concluded that the DADT Policy is necessary to maintain unit cohesion, accommodate personal privacy, and reduce sexual tension for military effectiveness, LCR’s facial due process challenge fails.

    Reduce sexual tension? What sexual tension exists? For God sakes, the right wing will have a field day with the above quote. Does the Department of Justice have any evidence that sexual tension even exists? The only tension I know about is the one where over 14,000 LGBT soldiers have been dismissed from the military thus disrupting their duties in the military.

    • indypendent

      I read somewhere this week about some high-ranking military man demanding separate bunkrooms if DADT is repealed.

      But yet I bet this guy is the first one in there to slap each and every naked man’s butt in the shower because that’s the manly thing to do (think NFL football here).

      I never could understand why male sports players were encouraged to do that – and spit in public.

      Both of those things are my personal pet peeves.

      It’s the person’s behavior that needs to be the focus of the problem, not the fact they are straight or gay. There’s alot of straight men that I cannot tolerate their sexual behavior but are they thrown out of the military? No, more likely, they are promoted.

    • Zippy

      Good God. That is almost comically absurd. But it’s not funny. While the solicitor-general technically has to defend the existing law, they are not required to use the standard homophobic talking points.

      On the upside, a court would have to uphold that nonsense on the “merits.” The problem: there are enough nutbar judges on the federal bench that it could happen.

      I would like to know who those judges are.

      One wonders how many on Capitol Hill make supportive noises for political reasons, but have no intention of delivering. Something needs to hit Obama’s desk, and long before the election (even if one concludes that, after 2 years of endangering national security, it will somehow get done, I think we know why the deadline is 1 year–how convenient!).

  4. I’ll bet every adult wishes they had the libido homophobes think LGBT people have! That fear thing, or is it jealousy? Dopes!

  5. indypendent

    Rachel Maddow was reporting on this RNC sex club story and had trouble getting through it. The next night, Rachel explained that they had been contacted by the San Diego Voyeur club and were informed that her show had used the wrong logo.

    So, Rachel had to make a correction about her story and show the real logo for the West Hollywood Voyeur club. Rachel even said that this is one story that made her stammer and feel uncomfortable.

    That’s what I mean about judging people by their behavior.

    There are straight and gay people everywhere but I don’t see any problems arising unless and until someone’s behavior causes a problem.

    Such is the case with all this homophobe smear-fear the Right is shoving down our throats.

    Their behavior is causing the problem – not the gay people who only want to serve their country in the military.

  6. I pretty sure it’s Monkeyhawk who says it the best way, in my opinion — (paraphrasing so it will probably not be as good as when he says it):

    the only time a person’s sexual persuasion matters is when they’re in bed with me.