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Friday, May 23, 2008

Scrub a Dub Dub From Campaign For California Families

They kind of remind me of Look True North and Minnesota Majority. Good As You:

Remember, even if county clerks say they MUST follow the Supreme Court decision, that's not true and you should tell them so. The California Supreme Court has no constitutional authority to impose new laws -- especially laws that go against marriage and family, the foundation of society (see California Constitution, Article 3, Section 3 and Article 4, Section 1). Only the Legislature and the voters can make new laws with statewide application.

Ask your county clerk if they were a Nazi officer during WWII and had been ordered to gas the Jews, would they? At the Nuremberg trials, they would have been convicted of murder for following this immoral order. And should have states obeyed the 1857 Dred Scott decision designating black slaves as "property," not "persons"? Abraham Lincoln reacted with disgust to the ruling and was spurred into political action, publicly speaking out against it. Several state legislatures essentially nullified the decision and declared that they would never permit slavery within their borders, no matter who ordered them to do so. Likewise, the ruling to destroy the man-woman definition of marriage should not be obeyed.

Here is how the page reads now:

History is replete with examples of doing what was right despite unjust laws and tyrannical orders:

- Peter and the apostles telling authorities that they will obey God, not man
- Several state legislatures declaring they will never accept slavery despite the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision in 1857
- The post-WWII Nuremberg trials punishing military officers who followed orders and committed crimes against humanity
- The pro-democracy protestors who died in Tiananmen Square in 1989

This reminds me a bit of Minnesota Majority and their "Racial Purity" health paper.

Larry Schumacher's Take on the Legislative Session

He says it much better than I could.

First, I'll give both sides points for bringing this thing in on-time and with a bipartisan agreement. This seems to happen more in bonding sessions like this one than in budget sessions on the odd-numbered years.

Everyone's happier when giving out presents than when balancing the checkbook, right?

Except this year, they had to do both, what with the little matter of a $935 million deficit staring everyone in the face.

So props to them for dealing with both in the same session and still getting done. I, for one, will not miss the thrill of covering a special session.

But when we take a closer look at how they got done and what they got done, the props turn into jeers.

The last two weeks of the session were basically conducted behind closed doors in Gov. Tim Pawlenty's office. Yes, we saw letters from both sides announcing offers, but ask your lawmaker when he or she figured out what was in the final deal and how it impacted their district.

If they weren't in the room where the deal got made and they tell you they understood what it meant before they voted on it, they're probably lying to you.

This isn't the right way to do business in a free and open society. And it makes a sham of everything that came before it -- all the committee hearings where citizens testified on bills that ultimately didn't have anything to do with the result, all the committee and floor debates on those bills, all rendered meaningless in the end.

Then, there's the end product. They managed to walk away without leaving red ink on the books ... this year, at least.

But big decisions were put off until after the election, again. How do we fund K-12 education and how much is enough? How do we deal with the spiraling cost of health insurance and its declining availability to working folks? How should the state's tax system be structured and how much taxes is enough?

These and more questions were left for the election campaign this fall.

Candidates had better offer answers to those questions, because whoever wins next year will face a budget deficit that is likely to be at least as large, and since they spent half of the state's rainy-day fund this time, it'll be much harder to fix next year's budget without drastic changes than it was this year.

Something to keep in mind when incumbents are running around this summer and fall, talking about the jobs they created and the infrastructure that's being rebuilt, or how they held the line and balanced the budget without new taxes.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Blog Reactions to California Marriage Ruling

Dale Carpenter at the Volokh Conspiracy.

Sexual orientation and heightened scrutiny in the California marriage decision:

While the politics are complicated and uncertain five months out, a thrilling but narrow win for gay marriage in the California Supreme Court last week could become a narrow and heartbreaking loss at the polls in November. But the court’s equal protection holding will outlast a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage and will have potential to challenge anti-gay discrimination well beyond the issue of marriage. If gay marriage loses in California in November, the equal-protection holding will be the lasting legacy of the opinion.

Spot over at the Cucking Stool fisks Katherine Kersten's overblown screeching over the decision. Spot follows up with further fisking for Kersten.

The anti-gay American Family Association is trying to pressure John McCain into supporting the Federal Marriage Amendment. TV commentators are saying that McCain's position is no different than Hillary Clinton's and Barack Obama's.

A Stopped Clock is Correct Twice A Day

In this case, Katherine Kersten makes a reasonable point.

The California decision vindicates Minnesotans who argue that a constitutional amendment is the only way to safeguard traditional marriage. During the 2006 debate, then-Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson and OutFront Minnesota both maintained that the amendment was unnecessary, because our state already has a "defense of marriage" act and because the Minnesota Supreme Court rejected same-sex marriage in a 1971 case.

This argument used by OutFront Minnesota and Dean Johnson against the Bachmann amendment was a wrong-headed argument. The arguments should have been more direct about why the amendment was wrong. The arguments should have been that marriage laws should be in statute and not in the constitution. When I debated Michele Bachmann on KKMS (Christian radio), the argument that worked the best, was when I talked about how it was wrong to put an unpopular minority up to a popular vote. I pointed out an effort to remove a segregation clause from Alabama's constitution failed in 2004. Soon after, a caller said they were troubled by this aspect of a constitutional amendment, even though the caller was strongly opposed to gays being included in the institution of marriage.

Strib Editorial Supports Welcoming Schools Anti-Bullying Curriculum


In a Minneapolis classroom, a fourth-grader says "That's so gay,'' which in turn intimidates and offends a child with two moms. In the hallway, a third-grader shoulder-shoves another boy while using the other f-word.

Those types of exchanges occur regularly at Minneapolis elementary schools, educators say. So when children taunt, tease or harass their peers with antigay epithets, what should teachers do? That's the dilemma Minneapolis school leaders seek to address in considering the "Welcoming Schools'' guide, a lesson plan on diversity, bullying, gender-stereotyping and name-calling.

Despite its worthy goals, the proposed program has become controversial. Some parents believe it's inappropriate to discuss sexual orientation in schools. Some say that programs such as "Welcoming Schools'' directly conflict with their views on family structure. Understandably, these are sensitive issues. That's why the district would allow parents to opt out of the pilot program now under consideration.

The anti-gay activists over at the Minnesota Family Council are howling over the Strib's bias. Somehow they forgot to mention this editorial countered their "columnist" Katherine Kersten.

Spotty over at the Cucking Stool wagged his tail over the Kersten column. It's well worth a read. Spotty points out that Kersten, as is typical, just regurgitates press releases.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Strib Covers Coleman's Blood Money and Franken's Playboy Money


Minnesota Republicans are scolding DFL Senate candidate Al Franken for a campaign fundraiser hosted Monday by Playboy CEO Christie Hef- ner at her Chicago-area home -- and taking him to task for a sexually explicit satire he wrote for that magazine eight years ago.

Meanwhile, DFLers are calling on Republican incumbent Norm Coleman to divest his reelection campaign of nearly $10,000 received from the political-action committee and employees of a lobbying firm that represented Myanmar's military regime.

With endorsing conventions for the U.S. Senate race rapidly approaching, the leading candidates are under attack by political opponents for taking contributions from controversial donors.

In Coleman's case, it's the oppressive face of Myanmar's junta that has been on display since the devastating cyclone this month that killed nearly 80,000 people.

With Franken, it's the magazine that made pornography in the United States big business and which has been accused of exploiting women under a veneer of sophistication.

Commenters react:

As a woman ..

who grew up at the height of Playboy's reign [clubs, televised "Bunny of the Year" contest on ABC, massive resorts] I would rather be associated with Playboy than the barbaric junta that destroyed the Burmese people. However, as bent as the average American is about sex and sexuality, I will bet good money that people will rake Mr. Franken over the coals, as opposed to doing the same to Mr. Coleman. We tend to disregard violence in favor of conducting witch hunts over sexual matters.
posted by daphned3620 on May. 20, 08 at 11:43 PM |
44 of 67 people liked this comment.
Coleman's ties with cruel and brutal dictators

This just shows that Norm Coleman will do anything to keep his government paycheck coming. He has absolutely no experience working like average Minnesotans so he accepts bloody money from the dictators shills.
posted by joeeeeee on May. 21, 08 at 6:37 AM |
35 of 61 people liked this comment.
As a human ...

I'm offended that Coleman would accept financing from such a dubious source. But then Norm doesn't give two donations about what's right, he only cares about what will keep his slimy rear in office. That's always been goal #1 with America's laziest senator.
posted by shockdaddyd on May. 21, 08 at 6:39 AM |
37 of 61 people liked this comment.

McCain Supporter John Hagee: Nazi's operated on God's Behalf to Get Jews to Re-Establish State of Israel

Pastor John Hagee:

Again he said unto me “Prophesy unto these bones, and say unto them, ‘O you dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!” [Biblical reference: Ezekiel 37, New King James Version, “Dry Bones” prophecy], and he spoke to them and they stood and they became an exceeding great army - meaning they physically came to life. Now how is God going to bring them back to the land? The answer is fishers and hunters. The answer is given in Jeremiah 16, verse 15 and following. God says in Jeremiah 16 - “Behold I will bring them the Jewish people again unto their land that I gave unto their fathers” - that would be Abraham, Isaac and Jacob - “Behold I will send for many fishers and after will I send for many hunters. And they the hunters shall hunt them” - that will be the Jews - “from every mountain and from every hill and from out of the holes of the rocks.” If that doesn't describe what Hitler did in the Holocaust... you can't see that. So think about this - I will send fishers and I will send hunters. A fisher is someone who entices you with a bait. How many of you know who Theodore Hertzel was? How many of you don't have a clue who he was? WOO... Sweet God! Theodore Hertzel is the father of Zionism. He was a Jew that at the turn of the 19th century said - “this land is our land, God wants us to live there”. So he went to the Jews of Europe and said, “I want you to come and join me in the land of Israel”. So few went, Hertzel went into depression. Those who came founded Israel; those who did not went through the hell of the Holocaust. Then god sent a hunter. A hunter is someone who comes with a gun and he forces you. Hitler was a hunter. And the Bible says - Jeremiah righty? - “they shall hunt them from every mountain and from every hill and out of the holes of the rocks”, meaning: there's no place to hide. And that will be offensive to some people. Well, dear heart, be offended: I didn't write it. Jeremiah wrote it. It was the truth and it is the truth. How did it happen? Because God allowed it to happen. Why did it happen? Because God said, “my top priority for the Jewish people is to get them to come BACK to the land of Israel”. Today Israel is back in the land and they are at Ezekiel 37 and 8. They are physically alive but they're not spiritually alive. Now how is God going to cause the Jewish people to come SPIRITUALLY alive and say, “the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, He is God”?

Will John McCain denounce Hagee?

DCCC Ad Hits Musgrave on Her Gay Marriage Obsession

Betsy Markey Stands a Good Chance Against Marilyn Musgrave

Swing State Project:

Bennett, Petts & Normington for Betsy Markey (5/13-15, likely voters):

Betsy Markey (D): 43
Marilyn Musgrave (R-inc): 36
(MoE: ±4.9%)

The poll pegs Musgrave's job approval rating at 40%, while 51% of voters disapprove of her performance in Congress.

It's an internal poll, so skepticism is expected. But the Musgrave campaign's response caught my eye:

Musgrave supporters, however, said it's much too early to count her out of the race. Guy Short, Musgrave's chief of staff, said a poll done by the Musgrave camp in March showed her leading 47 percent to 42 percent.

Even if Musgrave's internal poll is a more accurate snapshot of this race, a GOP incumbent leading an unknown Democrat by a mere 47-42 margin in an R+8.5 district is hardly a stellar performance. I'll take either set of numbers here.

Marilyn Musgrave is very similar to Michele Bachmann, and represents a similar district. Her constituents appear to be getting tired of Musgrave's antics.