Archive for November 5th, 2007

House Of Shadows

Spooky shadow photos from inside MY OWN APARTMENT OMG!!!

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1 comment November 5th, 2007 at 10:35pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Photoblogging,Pittsburgh

Lifelong Torturer

From blowing up frogs with firecrackers, to establishing himself as the Torturer-In-Chief, our Fearless Leader has always enjoyed inflicting pain:

New York Times, “Branding Rite Laid to Yale University,” Nov. 8, 1967

NEW HAVEN, Nov. 7–A Yale fraternity accused by the student newspaper of burning its initiates with a brand will have its fate decided Friday by student fraternity leaders.

The fraternity, Delta Kappa Epsilon, could face the temporary closure of its house and a $1,000 fine resulting from alleged violations of rules previously passed by the Inter-Fraternity Council, which consists of Yale’s five fraternity presidents.

The charges against Delta Kappa Epsilon were made last Friday in a Yale Daily News article that accused campus fraternities of carrying on “sadistic and obscene” initiation procedures.

The charge that has caused the most controversy on the Yale campus is that Delta Kappa Epsilon applied a “hot branding iron” to the small of the back of its 40 new members in ceremonies two weeks ago. A photograph showing a scab in the shape of the Greek letter Delta, approximately a half inch wide, appeared with the article.

A former president of Delta said that the branding is done with a hot coathanger. But the former president, George Bush, a Yale senior, said that the resulting wound is “only a cigarette burn.”

On the plus side, some of the pledges had very valuable intelligence about, um, prime locations for panty raids and stuff.

2 comments November 5th, 2007 at 09:49pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Torture,Wankers

First Thing We Do, Let’s Kill All The Lawyers

As JDB points out, that phrase doesn’t mean what some people think it means. It doesn’t mean lawyers suck, it means that lawyers are an inconvenient obstacle if you’re looking to circumvent the rule of law. Which makes it especially apt for what’s happening in Pakistan:

Angry protests by thousands of lawyers in Lahore and other cities Monday demonstrated the first organized resistance to the emergency rule imposed by the Pakistani president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf. But the abrupt arrest of many of them threatened to weaken their challenge.

(…)

The strength of the crackdown by baton-wielding police officers who pummeled lawyers and then hauled them by the legs and arms into police wagons in Lahore showed the resolve of the Musharraf government to silence its fiercest opponents.

At one point, lawyers and police clashed in a pitched battle, with lawyers standing on the roof of the High Court throwing stones at the police below, and the police hurling them back. Some of the lawyers were bleeding from the head, and some passed out in the clouds of tear gas.

(…)

There were conflicting estimates of the number of lawyers in jail in Lahore Monday night. Some lawyers said that as many as 500 to 700 of their colleagues were in custody, scattered in groups at various police cells and jails.

In all, about 2,000 people have been rounded up since the imposition of emergency rule Saturday night, lawyers and analysts said.

(…)

The demonstrations were not confined to Lahore. In Multan, a city in the same province, Punjab, as Lahore, two new judges who had taken the oath of office under the emergency rule were forced to leave the courtroom by hundreds of angry lawyers.

“We threatened them, saying: ‘You’ve taken an unconstitutional oath; if you don’t go we will throw eggs at you.’ They left,” said a lawyer from Multan, Riaz Gilani.

Some lawyers in Islamabad and Rawalpindi said they stayed away from the courts because they were warned they would be arrested and possibly beaten.

Despite the warnings, more than 100 lawyers demonstrated outside Islamabad’s main court complex Monday. The lawyers in black suits and ties shouted “Musharraf dog” and “A baton and a bullet will not do.”

Mad props to these Pakistani lawyers for their personal investment in the integrity of the law, and for seeing it as something more than just a tool for making money. Here in the US, we haven’t reached the violent confrontations stage, but many of the best progressive bloggers are lawyers who have the same kind of commitment to the rule of law.

As opposed to conservative lawyers, who are only interested in contorting, subverting, and evading the law to serve their political masters’ interests.

November 5th, 2007 at 08:49pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Constitution,Corruption/Cronyism,Politics

…And My Head’s Exploded Again.

Seriously, I have no idea how they manage this level of cognitive dissonance:

Q: Is it ever reasonable to restrict constitutional freedoms in the name of fighting terrorism?

MS. PERINO: In our opinion, no.

They’re talking about Pakistan, of course. Their fiercely pro-Democracy stance only applies to other countries. Well, okay, when they talk about “Democracy” in other countries, they really mean, “not embarrassing Dubya too badly,” not that other thing about giving the people a voice in their government – that stuff’s strictly for hippies. But right now Pakistan is failing miserably by both definitions. Heckuva job, Mushie!

November 5th, 2007 at 07:01pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Constitution,Republicans,Terrorism,Torture

Monday Media Blogging

It’s a steampunk laptop! And other cool stuff that I want but will never have.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gg7fVMiwCvY

November 5th, 2007 at 11:15am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging

Principles

The WaPo continues its descent into evil and insanity with this charming editorial:

THE HALLS of Congress are too often filled with cowardice and groupthink. So it is reassuring when not one but two lawmakers show the moral fortitude to defy party politics to take a stand on principle.

Democratic Sens. Charles E. Schumer (N.Y.) and Dianne Feinstein (Calif.) showed such courage Friday when they announced their support for attorney-general nominee Michael B. Mukasey. Both are members of the Judiciary Committee, which is scheduled to vote Tuesday on Mr. Mukasey’s nomination. It is likely that their support salvaged Mr. Mukasey’s nomination, imperiled because he would not state outright that the interrogation method known as waterboarding, or simulated drowning, is illegal. While we, like Mr. Schumer, Ms. Feinstein and others, would have wished for such an answer, supplying it would have put Mr. Mukasey in conflict with Justice Department memos that likely allow the technique — memos that those who may have carried out or authorized waterboarding relied on for legal protection.

Yes, you heard that right: Caving yet again to the Bush administration and approving an AG nominee who thinks waterboarding is a-ok is a courageous, principled moral stand. Hooray for Charles & Di! They’re not craven, go-along-to-get-along wankers like that Russ Feingold character:

I will vote against the nomination of Judge Mukasey to be the next Attorney General. This was a difficult decision, as Judge Mukasey has many impressive qualities. He is intelligent and experienced and appears to understand the need to depoliticize the Department of Justice and restore its credibility and reputation.

At this point in our history, however, the country also needs an Attorney General who will tell the President that he cannot ignore the laws passed by Congress. Unfortunately, Judge Mukasey was unwilling to reject the extreme and dangerous theories of executive power that this administration has put forward.

The nation’s top law enforcement officer must be able to stand up to a chief executive who thinks he is above the law. The rule of law is too important to our country’s history and to its future to compromise on that bedrock principle.

What a wuss! See how he allows himself to get stampeded by something as trivial as the rule of law! He’s trapped in the same groupthink as the other 15-20 senators who will end up voting against Mukasey.

(h/t whig for the Feingold statement)

1 comment November 5th, 2007 at 06:58am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Constitution,Corruption/Cronyism,Democrats,Media,Politics,Prisoners,Torture,Wankers


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