Monthly Archives: May 2006
Al, while I do not subscribe to the label you’ve coined for the Bush administration, I must say I prefer “a renegade band of rightwing extremists” over “a renegade band of leftwing extremists” any day of the week. Thanks for sharing.
Al Gore has made his sharpest attack yet on the George Bush presidency, describing the current US administration as “a renegade band of rightwing extremists”.
Meridian Magazine makes it easy to contact your Senators in support of the Federal Marriage Amendment.
SALT LAKE CITY – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has sent a letter to its congregational leaders throughout the United States, urging members to “express themselves” on a forthcoming vote in the United States Senate relating to the definition of marriage.
The letter, signed by the First Presidency of the Church – the faith’s highest governing body – draws attention to the Senate vote scheduled for 6 June on an amendment to the federal Constitution that would “protect the traditional institution of marriage.” It will be read to congregations at the start of Church services this Sunday.
“We, as the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, have repeatedly set forth our position that the marriage of a man and a woman is the only acceptable marriage relationship,” the letter says
We are informed that the United States Senate will on June 6, 2006, vote on an amendment to the Federal constitution designed to protect the traditional institution of marriage.
We, as the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, have repeatedly set forth our position that the marriage of a man and a woman is the only acceptable marriage relationship.
In 1995 we issued a Proclamation to the World on this matter, and have repeatedly reaffirmed that position.
In that proclamation we said: “We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.”
We urge our members to express themselves on this urgent matter to their elected representatives in the Senate.
WASHINGTON — The House votes Tuesday to further choke off the flow of U.S. aid to the Hamas-controlled Palestinian Authority, drawing the displeasure of the Bush administration and dividing the pro-Israel lobbying community.
The measure, expected to pass easily, would cut off aid to non-governmental groups working in the West Bank and Gaza except for health programs and would deny visas to members of the Palestinian Authority. It also would ban contacts with Hamas because of its classification as a terrorist organization and limit the president’s authority to waive the aid bans.
The administration believes the legislation goes too far.
Ayalon met with leaders from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which owns BYU, and said he sees Mormons “as friends, as brothers, as allies.”
Knight led her 100-member choir, Saints Unified Voices, and preached to 3,000 people during two services over the weekend at the Suitland Stake Center, headquarters for 12 Mormon congregations in the District and Southern Maryland. The choir won Best Gospel Choir Album in February at the 48th Annual Grammy Awards.
“I am pressed so surely in my spirit to give you my testimony,” said Knight, telling the crowd about her conversion from the Baptist Church to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1997. “They thought I was crazy. They thought that I had lost my mind. ‘What are you doing over there with those Mormons? They don’t like black people.’ Yes, when I came to this church, I asked, ‘Do y’all like black people or not?’ “
Posted by permission from Dr. Daniel Pipes. Its appearance is independent of this blog, and should not be construed to either agree or disagree with the opinions expressed on this blog, or on any other website
by Daniel Pipes
New York Sun
May 23, 2006
[NY Sun title: "The Importance of Israel In November's Elections"]
Middle Eastern issues will likely play a role of unprecedented importance in the American mid-term elections less than a half-year away. Three topics head the agenda: the course of the Iraq war, the proper response to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, and the soaring price of fuel.
Despite their prominence, these are momentary issues, where voters will make decisions based on transient circumstances and without clearly defined differences between two major parties; what is the Democratic position on Iraq, anyway, or the Republican one on Iran? A fourth Middle Eastern issue, the Arab-Israeli conflict, though less high profile this year, has deeper electoral significance. It is a perennial topic that helps define the two parties.
The U.S.-Israel bond is the most special “special relationship” in the world today as well as the family relationship of international politics. In many areas – foreign policy, strategic cooperation, economic ties, intellectual connections, religious bonds, and intervention in one another’s domestic politics – the two countries have unusual if not unique relations. This reaches down even to local politics; as a 1994 New Yorker article put it, at times, “it seems that the Middle East – or, at any rate, Israel – is a division” of New York.
In addition, a significant number of Americans (Jews, Evangelicals, Arabs, Muslims, anti-Semites, leftists) vote according to Israel policies.
Since Israel came into existence in 1948, Democrats and Republicans have changed places in their attitudes toward Israel. In the first era, 1948-70, Democrats sympathized more with the Jewish state and Republicans distinctly less so. Whereas Democrats emphasized spiritual bonds, Republicans tended to see Israel as a weak state and as a liability in the Cold War.
The second era began in about 1970 and lasted for 20 years. In the aftermath of Israel’s extraordinary victory in the Six Day War, President Richard Nixon, a Republican, came to see Israel as a military powerhouse and useful ally. This new regard rendered Republicans as positive toward Israel as the Democrats. Noting this reality, I concluded in a 1985 research piece “Liberals and conservatives support Israel versus the Arabs in similar proportions.”
As the Cold War ended in 1990, the third era began. Democrats cooled to Israel and Republicans further warmed to it. The left made the Palestinian Arab cause a centerpiece of its worldview (think of the Durban conference in 2001), while the right deepened its religious and political alignment with Israel.
This trend has become increasingly evident. In 2000, survey research commissioned by the left-wing, anti-Israel activist James Zogby found “a significant partisan split” on the Arab-Israeli conflict, with Republicans significantly more pro-Israel than Democrats. For example, asked the question, “With regard to the Middle East, how do you feel the next president should relate to the region?” 22% of Republicans and only 7% of Democrats said he should be pro-Israel.
Recent research by the Gallup Poll finds that 72% of Republicans and 47% of Democrats sympathize more with the Israelis than Palestinian Arabs. A detailed look at this same data finds more dramatic results, with conservative Republicans over five times more sympathetic to Israel than liberal Democrats.
The Democratic coolness toward Israel fits into a larger pattern of conspiracy theories about neo-conservatives and anti-Jewish outbursts by such party luminaries as Jimmy Carter, Jesse Jackson, Cynthia McKinney, and James Moran. One observer, Sher Zieve, concludes that among Democrats, “anti-Semitism is and has been on the rise” for some time.
The current trend appears to be growing, with an attendant sorting out of Jews and Arabs/Muslims in American politics. This leads me to expect that Muslims, Arabs, and others hostile to Israel will increasingly vote Democratic, even as Jews and those friendly to the Jewish state increasingly vote Republican. In this light, it bears noting that American Muslims see themselves in direct competition with Jews; the Brookings Institute’s Muqtedar Khan predicts that Muslims in the United States soon “will not only be able to out-vote, but also out-bid the Jewish and most other ethnic lobbies.”
These developments have potentially profound implications for U.S.-Israel relations. The cross-party continuity of policy of the past will end, to be replaced by a major shift whenever the White House changes hands from one party to the other. As the political consensus breaks, Israel will be the loser.
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Smart publishers know one of the best ways to sell a book is to spark a controversy that attracts free publicity although you don t need to murder a Louvre curator to do it. A better way is to have your author pick a fight with a well-known and powerful person.
No one has done this better than author Dan Brown and the publishers of The Da Vinci Code. They picked a fight with the Son of God.
ACTION ON YOUR PART WILL TAKE LESS THAN 5 MINUTES and be anonymous.
This is the bill started and passed the CA Senate which would require teaching a homosexual agenda in CA public schools.
When it is ILLEGAL for our kids to say the Pledge of Allegiance in schools, ILLEGAL for them to pray or have a moment of silence, ILLEGAL to have programs in school that teach about their heritage and actively discourage patriotism, but the CA legislature wants to make it LEGAL to teach a gay agenda and force teachers to do so, it is time to say IT IS ENOUGH.
Subject: Vote on Gov Arnold’s phone
Please take a minute to vote by phone!
SB 1437 Homosexual Curriculum Education Bill in CA
If you are unfamiliar with this bill:
Go to Google and put in SB 1437 and read, if it passes, what will be mandated by each school district and textbook publisher at every grade level from K-12 in teaching about the homosexual / lesbian lifestyle and their positive influence in our history.
But there is a way for citizens to cast a “vote” which the Governor pays attention to. VOTE BY PHONE.
This horrendous Bill passed the State Senate. We must demand that our Governor veto it should it come to his desk!
Urge the governor to veto this bill!!
Please call the governor’s switchboard:
The correct number for the governor’s office is: 916-445-2841
- Phone recording will ask if you want this message in English?: yes, press 1
- Is this in regards to a legislation bill? Yes, press 2
- Is the bill SB 1437 ? Yes, press 1
- Are you in favor of this legislation? NO, press 2
YOU DO have a voice in this country and state still — use yours to register your opinion in this matter!
Call every day until he announces a VETO!
PASS IT ON.
What was missing in the president’s approach the other night was the expression, or suggestion, of context. The context was a crisis that had gone unanswered as it has built, the perceived detachment of the political elite from people on the ground, and a new distance between the president and his traditional supporters. The president would have done well to signal that he knew he was coming late to the party, as it were; that he’d come to rethink his previous stand, or lack of a stand, and had begun to consider whether there was not some justice in the views, and alarm, of others.
Without an established context the speech seemed free-floating: a statement issued into the ether, unanchored to any particular principle and eager to use, as opposed to appreciate, whatever human sentiment flows around the issue of immigration. It was a speech driven by an air of crisis, but not a public crisis, only a personal and political one.
To acknowledge what he apparently thinks are the biases of the base, he used loaded words like “sneak”–illegal immigrants “sneak across the border”–as if to establish his populist bona fides. This was, not to put too fancy a rhetorical term on it, creepy, and managed to be offensive to everyone.
What was needed was a definitive statement: As of this moment we will control our borders, I’m sending in the men, I’m giving this the attention I’ve given to the Mideast.
Once that is done, all else follows. “Comprehensive solution” seems like code for “some day we may do something”. No one believes in comprehensive solutions. They believe in action they can see. No one believes in the wisdom of government, but they do believe it has a certain brute power.
Should President Bush respond to the 18-page rant sent to him through the media by the jihadist president in Tehran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?…
Here’s what the president should say and do…
First, he should restate his support for the right of the Iranian people “to choose your own future and win your own freedom.”…
Next, he should designate Vice President Dick Cheney as his Emissary to the Free People of Iran. (That will get the boy president’s attention, I assure you. Cheney = serious business)…
Third, the President should ask Congress to fully fund programs in support of the Free People of Iran…
Finally, the Vice President’s office should work behind the scenes with non-profit organizations and with the leadership council that emerges from the loya jirga to get money and technical support items to opposition forces inside Iran…
Mr. President: bringing freedom to Iran is far too important to America’s national security to entrust it to the State Department, and especially not to the CIA. Go to the folks who can do, not to those who whine and leak…
If we do not help the people of Iran to overthrow this radical regime, the military option will be all that we have left – unless, of course, as the Party of Appeasement would have it, we are to get used to the idea of a nuclear-armed regime of radical Islamic fundamentalists who openly espouse the thrill it would give them to murder millions of Americans and Jews.
This is the only option between Appeasement and War. It’s time we took it seriously. There is much to do.
Sobering sarcasm Coulter style.
Bush has also apparently learned that the word “amnesty” does not poll well. On Monday night, he angrily denounced the idea of amnesty just before proposing his own amnesty program. The difference between Bush’s amnesty program and “amnesty” is: He’d give amnesty only to people who have been breaking our laws for many years — not just a few months. (It’s the same program that allows Teddy Kennedy to stay in the Senate.)
Bush calls this the “rational middle ground” because it recognizes the difference between “an illegal immigrant who crossed the border recently and someone who has worked here for many years.” Yes, the difference is: One of them has been breaking the law longer. If our criminal justice system used that logic, a single murder would get you the death penalty, while serial killers would get probation…
Instead of choosing immigrants based on the longevity of their lawbreaking, another idea is to choose the immigrants we want, for example, those who speak English or have special skills. (And by “special skills” I don’t mean giving birth to an anchor baby in a border-town emergency room.)
Why not use immigration the way sports teams use the draft — to upgrade our roster? We could take our pick of the world’s engineers, doctors, scientists, uh … smoking-hot Latin guys who stand around not wearing shirts between workouts. Or, you know, whatever …
No matter how the Bush administration and Congress act on illegal immigration in the US, any legislation or executive order is unlikely to answer the question: How many immigrants living in the country today are here illegally?
Depending on the source, the numbers range widely – from about 7 million up to 20 million or more.
The Senate immigration reform bill would allow for up to 193 million new legal immigrants — a number greater than 60 percent of the current U.S. population — in the next 20 years, according to a study released yesterday.
“The magnitude of changes that are entailed in this bill — and are largely unknown — rival the impact of the creation of Social Security or the creation of the Medicare program,” said Robert Rector, senior policy analyst at the Heritage Foundation who conducted the study.
Amnesty, that is Bush’s POINT! Bush simply asked for amnesty (guest worker) first, and enforcement as a tertiary afterthought. Other than announcing 6,000 National Guard over the next to years to assist the Border Patrol, it was the Senate Plan through and through.
Bush & the Senate are not representing those who voted him in, nor are they representing the vast majority of Americans. Just who Bush & the Senate are representing is anyones guess at this point.
I prefer comprehensive enforcement now, no amnesty latter.
Amnesties are all too common legislative efforts to forgive the breaking of immigration laws and to make it possible for illegal aliens to live permanently in the United States. Amnesties represent a system of federal rewards and assistance for illegal migrants, and they entice an even greater number of illegal migrants.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has warned the US that any attack on Iran will have devastating consequences and send oil prices soaring.
Mr Chavez, on a two-day trip to the UK, called for a socialist new world order and said nations were cowards for not standing up to the “American empire”.
The US has not ruled out military action against Iran over its nuclear programme but is pursuing diplomacy.
Hundreds of supporters gave Mr Chavez a rapturous welcome in north London.
Freedom is dependant upon security.
From an LDS perspective, righteousness is the ultimate aegis, and God its ultimate sentry.
That is to say, as a nation we must do all we can to have security in order to safeguard our freedoms.
But to trust alone in the arm of the flesh (Government) for our complete protection is tantamount to idolatry.
Only God can keep America safe and secure.
To the degree America as a whole turns its back on God and his commandments, is the degree we become less secure, in other words, vulnerable to terrorists attacks.
If there is one topic of particular interest to Latter-day Saints in “The Da Vinci Code,” it is the assertion that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene, because many believe it could well be true.
Formal doctrine and scripture unique to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that, in order to obtain the highest level of “exaltation” in the afterlife, members must be “sealed” or married in one of the faith’s temples for “time and all eternity,” and that such unions are a central part of God’s plan for humanity.
So while the question of Christ’s marital status isn’t new among Latter-day Saints, a trio of LDS scholars who have fielded numerous questions about it since the book’s release three years ago decided to address the topic head-on in the first LDS book to answer queries sure to be raised again with the film’s premiere next week.
“What Da Vinci Didn’t Know,” a 124-page book explaining what LDS doctrine does and doesn’t say about Christ’s marital status and other issues, has been published by Deseret Book. Authored by three Brigham Young University religion professors – Richard Neitzel Holzapfel, Andrew C. Skinner and Thomas A. Wayment – it contains a list of factual errors in the book and details the historical documents and context used by author Dan Brown.
(CBS/AP) President Bush will address the nation from the Oval Office Monday night to discuss immigration reform as the White House enters “crunch time” on the issue.
White House Press Secretary Tony Snow contacted television networks’ Washington bureau chiefs Friday to request a start time for the address. It will likely begin at 8pm EST.
Dear Chairman Ford,
I am disappointed that Ford caved in to pressure from homosexual groups and reneged on their agreement with AFA. When asked not to choose sides in the cultural battle regarding the promotion of homosexuality, Ford refused. Ford refused and elected to continue supporting homosexual groups. The number one goal of every homosexual group Ford supports is the legalization of homosexual marriage.
I will not be purchasing a Ford branded automobile (Ford, Mercury, Lincoln, Mazda, Land Rover, Jaguar or Volvo) during the coming year. I will also share information concerning Ford’s support for the groups promoting homosexual marriage with family and friends.
Sign the Boycott Ford Pledge: Yes, I’m supporting the boycott of Ford Motor Company automobiles until Ford stops supporting homosexual groups which are pushing homosexual marriage.
Political America red and blue is puzzling. Devoid of logic, consistency and originality, politicians daily run so fast to be interviewed by the media that what they say seems like nothing more than bees buzzing around the hive, absent the public benefit of honey production…
I discovered this good energy site from the article below. The site has an excellent Energy Primer http://www.energyrealism.org/
These days it may be easier to predict with accuracy the weather for the next morning than the price of gasoline at the pumps. Indeed, if the price at the pump drops evens a penny it’s newsworthy, as gasoline prices hover around $3 per gallon in many places across the country.
As lawmakers clamor to address rising gas prices, the average American wants help understanding how those prices are determined.
Recently Tom Tanton, Senior Fellow with the Institute for Energy Research, joined CFIF Corporate Counsel & Senior Vice President Renee Giachino to discuss gasoline prices. What follows are excerpts from part one of the two-part interview conducted on “Your Turn ? Meeting Nonsense with Common Sense” that airs on WEBY 1330 AM, Northwest Florida’s Talk Radio.
The FBI’s Ten Most Wanted listing for fugitive Fundamentalist LDS Church leader Warren Jeffs late last week has not only turned up the heat for those pursuing him but has again created media confusion with the Salt Lake City-based LDS Church.
In a news release Thursday, the LDS Church said increased media attention to polygamist groups, “particularly those living in southern Utah and Arizona,” too often “refer to these groups as ‘Mormons’ or ‘Mormon sects.’ ” Such references are “misleading and confusing to the vast majority of audiences who rightfully associate the term ‘Mormon’ with members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” it said.
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Long criticized by conservative Christians for profiting from violent or sexually graphic films that corrupt the young, Hollywood is starting to see there is money to be made catering to those critics.
“On Sunday, 43 percent of America was in church,” Jonathan Bock, head of a movie marketing company that specializes in religious audiences, said at a panel discussion on “What Would Jesus Direct?” at the Tribeca Film Festival this week.
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – California’s state Senate passed a bill on Thursday that would require textbooks in public schools to instruct students on contributions by gays and lesbians in the state’s development.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Zacarias Moussaoui was saved from a death sentence by a single juror who never explained his vote to other members of the jury that sent the September 11 conspirator to prison for life, The Washington Post reported on Friday.
There is now “considerable” circumstantial evidence that al-Qaida was linked to the July 7 London bombings that killed 52 innocent people, the government claimed for the first time last night.