Kudos To HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson

Democrat Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts (think Elmer Fudd with a law degree and hypothalamus deficiency) accused the Bush administration of “ethnic cleansing by inaction” for the government’s response to hurricane Katrina. 

A video of Frank’s statement, that was apparently filmed by James Zapruder, can be seen here.

This accusation is certainly nothing new, but what is refreshing is finding a member of the Bush cabinet who has a pair.

Alphonso Jackson, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, responded this way:

“It disturbs me tremendously when people want to say racism played a part in this,” he said. “As I reminded the Reverend Jesse Jackson and (NAACP President) Bruce Gordon, for 31 years we’ve had a black mayor in New Orleans; for 25 years we’ve had a predominately black city council in New Orleans, and the quality of life did not change for black people living in the Lower Eighth and Lower Ninth.”

In fact, Jackson asserted, “the quality of life had only gotten worse until the flood came in. … My contention is it wasn’t race, it was inefficiency and non-compassion.”

Alphonso Jackson is black, so he’d better start wearing an “‘uncle Tom’-proof vest” for subsequent discussions with Democrats. The truth can be dangerous.

Angry White Mail: Warrantless Opening Complaints Push The Envelope

Once again, “civil libertarians” and some members of Congress – groups often comprised of people who are engaged in demanding that nobody smoke, drink, eat meat, drive SUV’s, display Christian symbols, use chemicals on their lawns, hunt, fish, build additions on their homes, shop at Wal-Mart and wear fur — are angered at George Bush for stomping on our privacy rights.

This time the stink is about “warrantless mail searches.” Old news according to some.

Here are the basics:

A statement attached to postal legislation by President Bush last month may have opened the way for the government to open mail without a warrant.

White House spokesman Tony Snow said that’s nothing new. “All this is saying is that there are provisions at law for — in exigent circumstances — for such inspections. It has been thus. This is not a change in law, this is not new.”

“What the signing statement indicates is what present law allows, in making it clear what the provisions are,” Snow said Thursday in his daily briefing.

But members of Congress — Republicans and Democrats alike — say that’s not what they intended the law to do. And they call it another example of a president claiming new legal authority while signing a bill into law.

They never intended the law to be used that way? Gosh, that never happens does it?  People whose job it is to come up with impressive sounding names for stuff call this “function creep,” and the government invented it. It isn’t wise, from a business standpoint, to point out the shortcomings of your own invention.

As for members of Congress who are gravely concerned about mail searches, let’s not forget something: This is the same bunch of nosy ne’er-do-wells who claim to be having sleepless nights because your Christmas card to Grandma might be opened and read by the government, but at the same time they have absolutely no problem sticking their greasy mitts in the envelope that contains your paycheck.

If we’re going to stand against all government intrusion and for freedom and liberty, let’s stand against all government intrusion and for freedom and liberty. But when the same entity that just threatened to put a restaurant owner out of business if he didn’t stop putting trans-fats in my burger gets the nervous trots over the idea that George W. Bush might be reading that owner’s mail, the concept of freedom gets cloudier than Seattle in wintertime.

You can’t help but wonder how many of these relatively small “privacy concerns” are red herrings being voiced by those who are in fact pulling off far greater nosiness and outright unconstitutional intrusion.

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From The “News That Would Cause Outrage And Panic If This Were A Republican” File…

Eighty-nine year-old former Ku Klux Klan leader Robert Byrd is now the President Pro Tempore of the Senate — that’s third in the line of presidential successors for those of you keeping score at home.

The nation is just three hearbeats away from a most frightening morning newspaper cover consisting of a picture of Byrd sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office under the headline “The Kleagle has landed.”

From The "News That Would Cause Outrage And Panic If This Were A Republican" File…

Eighty-nine year-old former Ku Klux Klan leader Robert Byrd is now the President Pro Tempore of the Senate — that’s third in the line of presidential successors for those of you keeping score at home.

The nation is just three hearbeats away from a most frightening morning newspaper cover consisting of a picture of Byrd sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office under the headline “The Kleagle has landed.”

Oafs of Office: Quran vs. Bible Swearing-In Flap Misses Point

Keith Ellison, a Democrat from Minnesota, is the first Muslim elected to Congress, and today he’s going to be sworn in using the Quran instead of the Bible. The shudder this has caused in some of my fellow conservatives has produced minor tremors that have been detected by seismologists at Missed Point University.

Members of Congress are sworn in as a group with no books involved for an oath, but Bibles have been used by politicians for subsequent unofficial private ceremonies in offices, halls and sometimes strip clubs.

However, just because it’s “unofficial” we should take it seriously because said politicians is taking an oath on a book representative of their religious beliefs and entering a political body that has a great effect on all our lives — true, it’s usually a negative one, but still…

Ellison’s plan to be sworn in on a Quran was announced several weeks ago, and it began causing a controversy back when Townhall.com’s Dennis Prager wrote a column claiming that the Bible is the only proper way to be sworn into service for the U.S. government. Devvy Kidd agrees, as do many others.

Since the Constitution doesn’t stipulate what religious book is “proper” for a swearing in, I’ll assume that people are free to use whatever book they please — which is sort of the point of the U.S. Constitution.

But if that isn’t good enough, let’s consider some other factors.

Here’s what happened when I heard that Ellison would be sworn in using a Quran. Before hopping instinctively on a “America is a Christian nation so we should use the Bible for oaths instead of anything else” bandwagon, I suspended any urge for knee-jerk reaction and thought about it for a little while as I watched LSU/Notre Dame game, in which the Christians were fed to the Tigers.

Think of all the politicians who were sworn in using a Bible, or who otherwise claim to be “Christians.” Liberals who took a hard left at Albuquerque, including Ted Kennedy, Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and also any number of crooks, cheats and liars that have slimed their way into the Capitol dome and later prison, have taken the oath on a Bible. This in no way devalues the Bible, but it does mean that we need to remember that an oath is only as good as the person taking it and has less to do with what they’re taking it on.

Consider Louisiana Rep. William Jefferson, who was busted with frozen assets — literally. Jefferson was caught blue-handed with public trough booty stuffed in his freezer, and got re-elected in spite of all that. If Jefferson said he wanted to be sworn in using a Quran, I’m here to tell you that I would not think this would be any more inappropriate than if Jefferson said he wanted to be sworn in using a Bible. The point being he shouldn’t be there in the first place.

Lousy dirtbag politicians for whom the best interests of America take a distant second to personal whims and special interests are no less horrendous because they took the oath on a Bible instead of a Quran.

People with the opinion of Dennis Prager and others should first prioritize. The fact that Ellison is a Democrat who will pull hard on the side of Team Pelosi should be offensive enough for conservatives. I don’t care if somebody is sworn in on a copy of Where’s Waldo, if he or she is a politician that doesn’t believe in constitutional principles, he or she has no business in Congress — and there are dozens and dozens of them in there. Many of those dozens were sworn in on Bibles, by the way.

That it’s a Christian instead of a Muslim is confiscating our rights and money should offer us little consolation.

If elected president, Hillary Clinton will be sworn in on a Bible. Whew! Crisis averted.
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“Osama Obama” Redux

CNN has apologized over and over for the following graphic that ran over a story about the search for Osama Bin Laden. The words on screen made reference to the name of a Democrat Senator and possible presidential candidate, and not the world’s most wanted man:

A “bad typographical error,” CNN called it. That is a bad and coincidental error. The “B” and the “S” are separated by a few keys — at least on my keyboard, but hey, at least it’s time that somebody got even for the “X” over the video of Dick Cheney.

What’s the big deal? Ted Kennedy called the Illinois Senator “Osama Obama” months ago, and nobody made him apologize (YouTube video of the Admiral in the Olds Navy here).

On second thought, maybe this CNN “slip up” is in fact a subliminal ad for the “Obama for President” campaign. Somebody, specifically Hillary, should check the McCain/Feingold rules to see if we can charge CNN for the Obama promotion.

"Osama Obama" Redux

CNN has apologized over and over for the following graphic that ran over a story about the search for Osama Bin Laden. The words on screen made reference to the name of a Democrat Senator and possible presidential candidate, and not the world’s most wanted man:

A “bad typographical error,” CNN called it. That is a bad and coincidental error. The “B” and the “S” are separated by a few keys — at least on my keyboard, but hey, at least it’s time that somebody got even for the “X” over the video of Dick Cheney.

What’s the big deal? Ted Kennedy called the Illinois Senator “Osama Obama” months ago, and nobody made him apologize (YouTube video of the Admiral in the Olds Navy here).

On second thought, maybe this CNN “slip up” is in fact a subliminal ad for the “Obama for President” campaign. Somebody, specifically Hillary, should check the McCain/Feingold rules to see if we can charge CNN for the Obama promotion.

Pay Raise for Federal Judges? First, A Performance Evaluation Is In Order

Say it ain’t so! Chief Justice John Roberts has said that low pay is “threatening the judiciary.” From CNN.com:

Roberts said the judiciary will not properly serve its constitutional role if it is restricted to people so wealthy that they can afford to be indifferent to the level of judicial compensation, or to people for whom the judicial salary represents a pay increase.

Issuing an eight-page message devoted exclusively to salaries, Roberts says the 678 full-time U.S. District Court judges, the backbone of the federal judiciary, are paid about half that of deans and senior law professors at top schools.

Federal district court judges are paid $165,200 annually; appeals court judges make $175,100; associate justices of the Supreme Court earn $203,000; the chief justice gets $212,100.

The issue of pay, says Roberts, “has now reached the level of a constitutional crisis.”

Federal judges only get about 50% of the salary of deans and senior law professors at top schools? The answer is clear — cut the salaries of deans and law professors in half! Hey, that would be the liberals answer if you replaced “deans and law professors” in that sentence with “corporate CEOs” wouldn’t it?

How come it takes the issue of a Federal paycheck to get us to notice a “constitutional crisis”? What is a “constitutional crisis” are some of the rulings that come from the Federal bench.

Since those of us in our regular “real world” jobs could never think of asking for our pay to double without one hell of a performance evaluation, lets approach this request on that level.

Sorry, Mr. Roberts, but I don’t want another penny of our tax money going to leftist whiffle-heads like the judges on California’s Ninth Appellate, whose rulings make me wonder if they are the love children of Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky, conceived after a torrid affair on the Isle of Numbskull and subsequently sent to law school.

I don’t want people like Detroit U.S. District Court judge Anna Diggs Taylor – who rule essentially on the side of terrorists out of grief-stricken concern for their “rights” while stripping Americans of theirs — to get so much more money that she doesn’t seek employment elsewhere. I’ll bet a months pay that Taylor’s next colonoscopy turns up a benign polyp and six members of the ACLU.

Consider Roberts’ Supreme Court. Cases like Kelo v. New London, which danced on the grave of private property rights, and many, many other rulings, should tempt us to look at Roberts’ pay raise request for Federal judges and laugh out loud (or “lol” for you kids).

I don’t want to give any money, let alone more money, to “Librarian from Hades,” Ruth Bader Ginsburg; John Paul Stevens, who was nominated to the Court by Gerald Ford, (I wanted to include a joke here about Stevens’ nomination being due to Ford falling down and hitting his head on the steps of Air Force One, but I won’t use it out of respect for Ford); mamma’s boy and Stan Laurel ringer, David Souter; another stain left on the black robe of the Court by Bill Clinton alongside the Bader Ginsburg discharge — Stephen Breyer; and Anthony Kennedy, can prove that even Reagan made mistakes.

Nope, I don’t care if they go off to find other work. Sorry.

Lets also consider who in Congress is for dramatic pay raises for the Federal judiciary. Last year, a bill was introduced to do just that — it was introduced by Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California, Patrick Leahy of Vermont and John Kerry of Massachusetts — three people so liberal that Ward Churchill refers to them as f#%@*%g hippies.

Gee, why are these liberal Senators so very concerned about raising the pay of Federal judges so they don’t leave? For the answer to that question, re-read the first few paragraphs of this commentary.

Sorry, Justice Roberts. Yes, there are good judges out there who actually have read the constitution and believe in following it to the letter, and you may well be one yourself, but the overall performance evaluation of the Federal bench is horrendous. I’ll put it this way, if the Constitution were their boss, the next time they arrived for work they’d find all the stuff from their desks in a cardboard boxes by the curb, and that the access code to the buildings had been changed.

Another thing; it can be a lifetime appointment — it doesn’t say anywhere that it has to be. If some of the judges mentioned above, and dozens of others, really want to serve America, let ’em get a job waiting tables.

With Democrat congressional control, however, Federal judges can look forward to a major raise in the coming months or years. Hey, somebody wake up Ruth Bader Ginsberg and tell her the good news!

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