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The Morning Plum

* Inside the emerging GOP strategy on the Bush tax cuts: Senate Republicans will mount a new push this fall for a constitutional amendment to balance the budget, just when the war heats up over whether to extend the tax cuts for the rich.

The idea is that even though this has no chance of passing, such an amendment polls well in states with contested Senate races. Pushing it would apparently allow Republicans to call Dems' bluff when they point to GOP opposition to letting the tax cuts expire as proof Republicans don't care about the deficit.

* But this won't help matters: David Gregory can't get John Boehner and Mike Pence to explain to him how the tax cuts for the rich will be paid for.

* Why Harry Reid still could lose: Nevada journalist Jon Ralston plumbs the depths of voter hatred for Harry Reid.

* Anti-mosque hysteria gets notice: The right's campaign against mosques across the country is becoming a national story.

Also in that link: The untold story is that in each community where this is happening, counterprotests are springing up, and "their numbers have usually been larger."

* Scapegoats for a bad economy: The anti-mosque fervor and the talk about changing the 14th amendment are both part of a larger rise in xenophobia similar to previous spikes in "illiberal populist nationalism" during periods of economic stagnation.

* Can't we tweak the 14th amendment a bit? Rep. Boehner adds his voice to those tentatively suggesting we should think about maybe tweaking the amendment.

* Losing David Broder? The Dean says that the GOP's flirtation with changing the 14th amendment might be cause for concern:

"That is a radical change, freighted with emotional baggage, and if this is an example of what it would mean to have more Republicans on Capitol Hill, watch out."

* No more whining about GOP obstructionism: Chris Dodd tells fellow Dems that this only makes them look weak and ineffective, and that the real Dem failure was to expect GOP cooperation.

Okay, Senator, fair enough, but how do you square that with your bizarre opposition to reforming the filibuster?

* Things that aren't gonna happen: White House energy chief Carol Browner says Dems just may try to pass cap and trade during Congress' lame-duck session. Yeah, right.

* Not sustainable: As I noted here the other day, it's hard to see how Obama's position on gay marriage is sustainable.

* And don't miss Mitch McConnell's justification for GOP obstructionism: Once Obama and Dems made it clear they wanted to turn the United States into France, we had no choice but to stop them by any means necessary, for the good of America.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  |  August 9, 2010; 8:35 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Climate change , Foreign policy and national security , House GOPers , Morning Plum , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans  
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Next: GOP leader admits Republicans have "credibility problem" on deficits

Comments

To listen to Leftists, you'd think that opposition to Cordoba House is the hobgoblin of a few small minds on the right. Racists, fascists, Islamophobes, xenophobes, Neanderthals-- the whole Star Wars cantina of boogeymen and cranks stand opposed to poor, innocent Imam Rauf.

Abscent from this fairly naked effort to demonize the vast majority of Americans is the simple fact that Cordoba House support has tanked in the polls for weeks.

The latest poll? By a margin of 61 to 26 percent, New Yorkers oppose the proposal to build the Cordoba House.
http://www.siena.edu/uploadedfiles/home/parents_and_community/community_page/sri/independent_research/Imm0710%20Release.pdf

“Large majorities of all New Yorkers, every party, region and age give a thumbs-down to the Cordoba House Mosque being built near the Ground Zero site,” said Dr. Don Levy, the institute’s director, in a press release.

Thus, the ObaMedia's silly demonization campaign should be accepted for what it is-- delusional and disconnected.

Support the will of the people, Mayor Bloomberg.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

[NYSlimes crowed: counterprotests are springing up, and "their numbers have usually been larger."]

pffl... Soros rent-a-mobs? or the usual suspects?

pathetic spin

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

@Greg

"the emerging GOP strategy on the Bush tax cuts..."
&
"Mitch McConnell's justification for GOP obstructionism..."

Are both clear reasons why I've gotten really sick and tired of politics. This is what passes for "The Art of the Possible" these days? It's really pathetic.

......

"Losing David Broder?"

Did you read the article a while back by Glenn Greenwald about Democrats and their "Villian Rotation"?

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/02/23/democrats

I've started having the thought that Republicans are playing this game, but rather it's "Moderate Rotation". The goal is to allow each extremist hack journalist or politician a chance every once and a while to act somewhat moderate (though still conservative) in a sea of hard-right lunatics so that they retain some semblence of legitamacy.

It also pulls the conversation on the whole to the right, since the "moderate" who seems slightly more reasonable is still coming from a distinctly conservative position - making that the middle ground.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | August 9, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Pushing it would apparently allow Republicans to call Dems' bluff when they point to GOP opposition to letting the tax cuts expire as proof Republicans don't care about the deficit.
========================================

The party of nothing but propaganda is going to stage yet another bit of theater in the Senate, and this equals "calling the Dem's bluff"?

I don't think that's the correct metaphor...
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 9, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

First Dems should welcome the argument over a balanced budget amendment by using California as an example of what that might entail. People will think its a good idea till the realize THEY will lose some services. Also a balnced budget amendment WILL lead to higher taxes. No way around that.

Second Dodd himself cant talk because he repeatedly watered down his fin reg bill looking for cooperation and got none. He took out the wind down fund which was probably one of the best provision of his bill and they still laughed at him. He need give no lectures on the issue of filibuster reform or whining.

Posted by: sgwhiteinfla | August 9, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

First Dems should welcome the argument over a balanced budget amendment by using California as an example of what that might entail. People will think its a good idea till the realize THEY will lose some services. Also a balnced budget amendment WILL lead to higher taxes. No way around that.

Second Dodd himself cant talk because he repeatedly watered down his fin reg bill looking for cooperation and got none. He took out the wind down fund which was probably one of the best provision of his bill and they still laughed at him. He need give no lectures on the issue of filibuster reform or whining.

Posted by: sgwhiteinfla | August 9, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

"The untold story is that in each community where this is happening, counterprotests are springing up, and "their numbers have usually been larger.""

Well, ain't that cool.

Posted by: bernielatham | August 9, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Anthony Weiner sent a letter to Mayor Bloomberg about the Cordoba House. It looks to me to be a mixed message.

http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/documents/2010/08/anthony-weiners-letter-to-bloomberg-on-the-cordoba-house.php?page=1

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 9, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Cordoba House is (allegedly) also an educational center, and two can play this game. Bring in a large contingent of blind people – with their seeing eye dogs. Overwhelm the foot washing station. Bring an extra pair of shoes, and leave them behind. Ask to see the women’s section if you are a man and vice versa. Bring your lunch. Use the pool. Ask inconventient questions.

New Yorkers will soon learn how "welcoming" the Cordoba House jihadists really are.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

"Why Harry Reid still could lose"

I think Harry Reid would stand a better chance of losing if he were running unopposed--i.e., I think he'd be more likely (in fact, almost certain) to lose to "none of the above", but Sharon Angle is an atrocious candidate. Somewhere between Martha Coakley and Alvin Greene, there's Sharon Angle. Who is a very, very bad candidate.

And, while I'd love to see Harry Reid go down in flames, even if that happens (and I'd applaud that part), I'm not looking forward to having Sharon Angle make irrational pronouncements on behalf of Republicans, conservatives, Christians, and Scientologists everywhere.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 9, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

The runoff here in GA for the Republican Gubernatorial primary takes place tomorrow.

This pitts Huckabee and Gingrich endorsed Nathan Deal (a birther, who resigned from Congress while he was the target of two separate ethics investigations) against Caribou Barbie supported Karen Handel (who is just like Palin - unbelievably vapid with a penchant for quitting elected positions early).

Huckabee was here yesterday and today we have Bible Spice making an appearance. Every redneck in the state will be feeling the starbursts today. The last poll I saw showed the race a toss-up and I'm completely torn over who I'd rather see face Roy Barnes in the fall: Handel's a bit of an intellectual lightweight but Deal's a real nutjob.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 9, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Sharron Obtuse Angle is not much different than Quitter Palin; and she was The Republican Party's most recent VP nominee. The vast majority of Republicans voted for her in the Presidential election.

Angle is as Republican as Palin, and the RNC is going to feature her as one of their featured fund raisers.

The Tea Party movement is a Republican Party operation; A Dick Armey; if you will.

Posted by: Liam-still | August 9, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

"against Caribou Barbie supported Karen Handel (who is just like Palin - unbelievably vapid with a penchant for quitting elected positions early)."

..........................

Does that make Palin, Handel's Messiah?

Posted by: Liam-still | August 9, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

"Does that make Palin, Handel's Messiah?"

HA! Good one, Liam.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 9, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

When trolls are so deliciously dense, its hard not to reward them with treats. I know I am weak, but the look so cute with their big brown 1's and 0's......

@kadaffi:The latest poll? By a margin of 61 to 26 percent, New Yorkers oppose the proposal to build the Cordoba House.


It is amazing what constant demagoguery can do to public opinion. Polling on the poll tax, jim crow, and the internment of Japanese americans showed their undeniable local popular support, despite their unconstitutionality and moral bankruptcy.
But,But,But,But,But,But, this is completely different....911, 911, 911.....ohnoes...

Anticonstitutionalism and moral bankruptcy are K's calling cards...

Posted by: srw3 | August 9, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

The Republican Party Is Building A Pontoon Bridge To The 19th Century.

The Republican Party's Mission Statement.

Today We Are All Amish.


Paul Krugman lays out how The Republican Party's decades long campaign to discredit government has to led to the decay of infrastructure, and the loss of vital local services.

His headline is;

"America Goes Dark"


http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/09/opinion/09krugman.html?hp

Excerpt:

"The lights are going out all over America — literally. Colorado Springs has made headlines with its desperate attempt to save money by turning off a third of its streetlights, but similar things are either happening or being contemplated across the nation, from Philadelphia to Fresno.

Meanwhile, a country that once amazed the world with its visionary investments in transportation, from the Erie Canal to the Interstate Highway System, is now in the process of unpaving itself: in a number of states, local governments are breaking up roads they can no longer afford to maintain, and returning them to gravel.

And a nation that once prized education — that was among the first to provide basic schooling to all its children — is now cutting back. Teachers are being laid off; programs are being canceled; in Hawaii, the school year itself is being drastically shortened. And all signs point to even more cuts ahead.

We’re told that we have no choice, that basic government functions — essential services that have been provided for generations — are no longer affordable. And it’s true that state and local governments, hit hard by the recession, are cash-strapped. But they wouldn’t be quite as cash-strapped if their politicians were willing to consider at least some tax increases.

And the federal government, which can sell inflation-protected long-term bonds at an interest rate of only 1.04 percent, isn’t cash-strapped at all. It could and should be offering aid to local governments, to protect the future of our infrastructure and our children.

But Washington is providing only a trickle of help, and even that grudgingly. We must place priority on reducing the deficit, say Republicans and “centrist” Democrats. And then, virtually in the next breath, they declare that we must preserve tax cuts for the very affluent, at a budget cost of $700 billion over the next decade. "

Posted by: Liam-still | August 9, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

BREAKING: Lazio 'pull plug on mosque'
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/manhattan/lazio_let_pull_plug_on_mosque_OAn7Mv9ijyGZsoGM8S4OxK

GOP gubernatorial hopeful Rick Lazio yesterday called on the Public Service Commission to zap the Ground Zero mosque because of the revelation that Con Ed owns half the site.

"As governor I will appoint commissioners... who, like me, oppose this group's plan to build a mosque at Ground Zero-- and I encourage New Yorkers to call the Public Service commissioners and tell them the same," he said.

The disclosure in Sunday's Post about the property's ownership proves the mosque's developers "have been operating under false pretenses," he said.

The commission, which oversees utility rate hikes, may get to weigh in on the controversial plan if Con Ed sells its building on Park Place to mosque developer Sharif El-Gamal.

[Lazio for Gov!]

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

" And don't miss Mitch McConnell's justification for GOP obstructionism: Once Obama and Dems made it clear they wanted to turn the United States into France, we had no choice but to stop them by any means necessary, for the good of America."

The hero McConnell must have been saving America from itself since the Democratic agenda was the change America we to the polls and demanded.

Posted by: soapm | August 9, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Apparently, there are some Muslims who see the Cordoba House as deliberate mischief making, rather than sincere effort at outreach. And they make a cogent argument:

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/Mischief+Manhattan/3370303/story.html

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 9, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

How did they feel about the Bush/Cheney Invasion of Iraq? Did they see that as mischief making, or just a lovely gesture of Christian Outreach to that predominantly Muslim nation?

Posted by: Liam-still | August 9, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

srw3 has the audacity to climb up on its hind legs and howl about FDR's Shinto-fascist internment camps after his Leftist fellow travelors spent the last decade goose-stepping at kristallnaght-style gutter riots (masquerading as “peace” protests) in support of Islamo-fascism?

Patriotic Americans are encourage to Enter the “Leftist-fascist Hall of Shame” and recall what Leftist-fascism looks like.
http://www.zombietime.com/hall_of_shame/

So, when is billionaire progressive George Soros financing the unhinged Leftist rent-a-mob rally against ObaMao’s summary execution of three (un-Mirandized) Somali teens at sea? Afterall, that tactic was clearly more “fascist” than our patriotic moistening of KSM, et.al. The one year anniversary of ObaMao’s high seas shooting spree has already passed. Get busy, Leftists.

Rage against the machine, srw3!

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

"That is a radical change, freighted with emotional baggage, and if this is an example of what it would mean to have more Republicans on Capitol Hill, watch out."

McConnell has allowed his party to become absolute cowards and they have now become the pandering to the extreme fringe party. If it doesn't pass the extreme fringe smell test, Republicans aren't allowed to discuss it openly.

Cowards. All of them (R).

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 9, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

What gets me is not the lies...

...it's how EASILY someone like KaddafiDelendaEst gets suckered in.

These neobaggers believe the conservative line even if it runs totally counter to the civil rights laws embedded in the Constitution. It's not just the lie, it is the TOTAL lack of critical thinking by the 25% who still thought Bush was doing a heckuva job as of the Fall of 2008.

It is truly mind-boggling how much energy they expend promoting lies when just a LITTLE critical thinking is all you need to realize "HEY, our country was founded on the freedom of and freedom from any one religion." It takes almost zero critical thinking for that to kick in. That these people do not, cannot, and will not "go there" is literally unfathomable to me.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

All, some striking candor from a GOP leader about the party's record on deficits:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/08/gop_leader_admits_republicans.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 9, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

How did Liam feel about Saddam's killing fields, Uday's rape rooms and Qusay's human shredders? How did Liam miss our liberation of that Muslim nation from Ba'athist-fascism?

How about the 22 legitimate casus belli cited by Congress against Saddam? Saddam did try to kill a former American president; the U.N. embargo was violated (as were its inspection protocols); the 1991 accords were ignored; the genocide of brave Kurds did happen; suicide bombers were being given bounties; terrorists (including those involved into the 1993 World Trade Center bombing) were given sanctuary by Saddam; and on and on.

Perhaps Liam prefers the rape rooms of Qusay and Uday to the elected government of our new Iraqi allies?

There’s no need to remind folks. Patriotic Americans are well aware that Leftists supported Saddam and al-Qaeda. BEHOLD! The Leftist-Fascist Hall of Shame @
http://www.zombietime.com/hall_of_shame/

Don't be an apologist for Saddam your whole life, Liam.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

[Ethan2010 whined: it's not just the lie]

Your "freedom from religion" formulation is atheistic lying on stilts.

Don't be a 1st amendment butcher your whole life, Ethan.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Please, not the Balanced Budget Amendment again. It's a crock.

Despite decades of proposals, not a single advocate I know of has explained how it will be enforced. If the amendment passes, what would happen if Congress passes and the president signs an unbalanced budget?

Putting aside who would have standing to sue, would an unelected federal judge (the scourge of conservatives) be able to raise taxes? Cut spending? Hold Congress in contempt until it passes a budget satisfactory to the judge? (And by then, wouldn't we be well into the next fiscal year?) Who in the world supports giving the federal judiciary such power?

I've heard some people argue that the issue would be a "political question" and deemed non-justiciable by the courts. But if the courts aren't going to enforce it, who will? Why bother with the amendment at all? After all, the whole premise of the amendment is that Congress lacks the will to balance the budget on its own, so there has to be some threat to make them do it.

So let's put aside whether a Balanced Budget Amendment would be good policy or not. Until its advocates detail how it would be enforced, the whole idea should be dismissed as a non-starter. That it continues to be proposed by people who should know better is I think a sign of ignorance or deep cynicism.

Posted by: dasimon | August 9, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

@Kevin_Willis

"I'm not looking forward to having Sharon Angle make irrational pronouncements on behalf of Republicans, conservatives, Christians, and Scientologists everywhere."

I find it deeply troubling that you feel more anxiety over the idea of Sharron Angle tarnishing the GOP brand that you do about the damage she could do to this nation as a sitting US Senator.

Party over Country...apparently.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | August 9, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Apparently Right Wing Nut jobs do not trust the National Security Services to do their jobs, and keep an eye on who might be helping the bad guys.

The Right Wing Hate Mongers want to just point fingers, based on just their own gut feelings, and based on that alone, prevent people from having equal treatment under the law.

If the zoning commission ruled that the proposed site was acceptable, then leave it to the FBI, etc; to handle all surveillance issues.

We do not need a nation that is run by hate mongers.

Posted by: Liam-still | August 9, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

@Liam-still: "How did they feel about the Bush/Cheney Invasion of Iraq? Did they see that as mischief making, or just a lovely gesture of Christian Outreach to that predominantly Muslim nation?"

I'm not sure, but it would be interesting to find out. Although I'm not sure the the arguments against building a community center in a certain area and going to war with a country that isn't even exceptionally belligerent towards us are quite the same.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 9, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

@BBQ: "I find it deeply troubling that you feel more anxiety over the idea of Sharron Angle tarnishing the GOP brand that you do about the damage she could do to this nation as a sitting US Senator."

She's not going to do any damage to the US as a sitting senator. Even if she's elected, which seems unlikely.

Or, she's not going to do any more damage to the US than any other sitting senator, of either party, ever does.

So what troubles you is that you believe something will happen that I do not. Mostly, she's going to run her trap and weaken the GOP and strengthen Democrats, so, from your side if the aisle, she might arguably improve things.

"Party over Country...apparently."

No, you've got that all wrong. Country first, opposition to Democrats second, good bathroom hygiene 3rd, playing Trajectile on my Nintendo DS 4th, rewatching all 6 seasons of Lost 5th . . . skip a few . . . watching the entire run of the original Twilight Zone on DVD, with commentary where available, 60th, and then somewhere around 160th is the GOP in my stack of priorities.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 9, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

"Your "freedom from religion" formulation is atheistic lying on stilts."

Actually, no. I am Jewish. YOUR promoting YOUR religion over mine is a violation of my Constitutional First Amendment Rights.

It really doesn't get any simpler to understand than that.

But since you have about the same capacity for reasoning as a clump of peat moss, I don't expect you to understand.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

@kdaff:Patriotic Americans are well aware that Leftists supported Saddam and al-Qaeda.

Sorry that was Rumsfield and Cheney that supported and armed Saddam in the 80's (while secretly arming Iran through Iran-Contra--nice: arming both sides of a conflict)so he could fight Iran, the present bogeyman (that we strengthened by destroying Iraq), and Reagan who supported the mujahadeen in Afghanistan (soon to become Al Qaeda), until he and Bush the Elder abandoned them after the Soviets left...

Making the human rights argument against Saddam might have a shred of credibility if in fact there was any emphasis on this before the WMD lie was exposed or if the US spent 1/1000 of the money on killing Iraqi civilians trying to stop the actual genocide in Sudan, were people were actually being brutalized and killed daily. Saddam's gassing the Iranians and the Kurds in the 80's must have had the tacit backing of the US govt, since there was no WMD outcry from the right until 10 years after their use. Maybe its because Reagan and his cronies turned a blind eye to Saddam getting those weapons in the first place...


I did notice that there is no rebuttal of the tyranny of the majority not necessarily comporting to the rule of law and the constitution, when it comes to internment or jim crow. But then logic and consistency might make K's head explode...can not compute....I guess they don't learn about the American constitution in the farrightwingnutistan school systems....

Posted by: srw3 | August 9, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

This was my favorite quote from the Dodd interview:

"Liberals are only happy when we're agonizing," Dodd says, disarmingly including himself in the category he's criticizing. "But if you're preaching gloom and doom, you're making it easy for the other side. They're preaching gloom and doom, too."

I've been thinking a lot lately that liberals need to work our skills for winning more graciously -- both in the interest of generally being less of a pain in the ass but also because taking a little more joy in our accomplishments would likely help win more people over to our causes (not to mention probably extending the lifespan of our livers). Think about it, who wants to hang out with people who are constantly complaining?

Posted by: CalD | August 9, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

[Liam whined: "leave it to the FBI, etc; to handle all surveillance issues."]

If Muslims can't distinguish peaceful Muslims from potential jihadists, how can Western authorities expect to do so?

The answer (of course) is that they don't. They aren't even trying. We are simply supposed to accept on faith that someone like the Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf (for all his dishonesty) is a "moderate."

BREAKING: "UK Muslim peace camp infiltrated by Al-Qaeda"
http://www.jihadwatch.org/2010/08/whoops-al-qaeda-infiltrates-uks-muslim-anti-terror-summer-camp.html

Al-Qaida fanatics have allegedly infiltrated Britain's first ever anti-terrorism summer camp.

According to the Daily Star, over 1,300 youngsters from the UK and other countries attended the three-day conference that was convened to discuss ways to stop extremists from getting to young British Muslims.

The daily quoted one of the organizers, as saying that militants loyal to Osama Bin Laden's network may have slipped inside.

Dr. Muhammad Tahir ul-Qadri said: "We are not afraid of any infiltration. If anyone comes with the wrong intention by the time he goes back, he will be changed."

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

@Ethan2010: There is no "freedom FROM religion" clause in our Constitution. Whether you're Jewish or Pastafarian is utterly irrelevant. Aping that atheist formulation remains a LIE.

Try harder to argue rationally.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

@K-daffy: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion...

That means the state can't coerce me to be religious, ie Freedom from sky wizardry and its supporters....

Reading comprehension also not taught in farrightwingnutistan...

Citing jihadwatch is akin to relying on storm front for articles on race relations.

Posted by: srw3 | August 9, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

@srw3: I see. So, unless one accepts your looney strawman demand to defend DEMOCRAT tyranny (e.g., Jim Crow, Shinto-fascist internment), one is somehow not logical or consistent?

Those cited indictments of DEMOCRATS are indefensible-- which does not imply that tyranny of the minority (vis-a-vis Cordoba House demands) is justified either.

As for your other whiney laments (Cheney, etc.), those are very silly wild geese you're chasing with that red herring.

Try harder to stay on topic, srw3.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

@srw3: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"

Q: Where (again) is your word "from"?

A: It's FROM the fevered minds of intellectual lightweights.

Don't be a 1st amendment butcher your whole life, lightweight.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

[srw3 spat: "Citing jihadwatch is akin to relying on storm front"]

JihadWatch is dedicated to bringing public attention to the role that jihad theology and ideology play in the modern world and to correcting popular misconceptions about the role of jihad and religion in modern-day conflicts.

JihadWatch advocates separation of religion from state; the observance of universal human rights; and traditions of liberty, rationality, and tolerance.

If that is akin to Storm Front, then srw3 needs to take a good hard look in the mirror. BEHOLD! The Leftist-fascist Hall of Shame and recall what Leftist-fascism looks like.
http://www.zombietime.com/hall_of_shame/

Don't be an apologist for Islamo-supremacists your whole life, srw3.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Oh my, how quickly we forget that we have freedom of/from religion. If the term were Church, not Mosque, we'd not be having this discussion. Right?

Even the President exposes his Religious Bigotry against LGBT Americans - opposing the Constitution and Bill of Rights, when he is faced with (his discomfort) recognizing full equality for ALL Americans. Proving that no one is free from bigotry of one form or another.

Posted by: rjmmcelroy | August 9, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

"""There is no "freedom FROM religion" clause in our Constitution. """

Yes there is. It's in the First Amendment. You just don't understand it.

Here is the Establishment Clause:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"

In other words:

THERE IS NO OFFICIAL RELIGION.

Which means:

I AM FREE TO PARTICIPATE IN ANY RELIGION, OR NONE AT ALL.

What's the matter with you that you show up on websites and LIE about the First Amendment?

Do you LIKE being the kind of person who imposes THEIR beliefs on everyone else even when it goes against the First Amendment?

You know who else wants to do that?

Osama Bin Laden.
The Taliban.
Proponents of Sharia Law.

Seriously. What is WRONG with you?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

@Ethan2010: Most Leftists are confused over positive vs. negative rights. Positive rights oblige government action (e.g., right to attorney); whereas negative rights oblige inaction (e.g., free speech).

Freedom FROM religion would be an illegimate positive right that would empower government (think Soviet or Maoist) to forbid religious belief.

Freedom OF religion is a legitimate negative right that forbids government from impeding free worship.

Notwithstanding, worship rights (like speech) are not absolute. For example, polygamy (like perjury) is outlawed in the United States. Why? See if you can figure it out. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reynolds_v._United_States

Similarly, Cordoba House sharia law advocacy is illegitimate practice. Sharia laws (e.g., subjugating women, honor killings, etc., ad nauseum) violate numerous other rights guaranteed under our Constitution.

There are already numerous mosques in New York (and others are planned), so there is no threat to Muslims' religious freedom in enforcing zoning or land use restrictions at Ground Zero.

Your Constitutional lament is a canard.

Try harder to think clearly, Ethan.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Idiot:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"

Is the Establishment Clause.

That's what it is.

Nothing in that law forces me to abide by YOUR religion.

Nothing in that law forces me to abide by ANY religion.

Nothing in that law prevents me from worshiping NO religion.

You have no argument, just lies and mockery of my fundamental Constitutionally-afforded civil rights.

It could not be more clear.

Go away Mr. Taliban.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't know how many times I need to repeat the message before it sinks into Ethan's thick skull-- but my patience is spent with these lying Leftist idiotarians.

This has NOTHING to do with removing mosques (contrary to Ethan/srw2 Constitutional strawman) and everything to do with the Islamo-supremacism of Cordoba House, in particular. Somehow, I think Ethan (and his Leftist ilk) wouldn't support neo-pagans' "right" to erect eternal Crann Tara monuments next to MLK memorials.

But when patriotic Americans object to stealth jihadists-- and (yes) that accurately describes the Cordoba House cabal-- opening a 9/11 snuff porn vendor emporium (and jihadi recruitment center) on the hallowed graves of Ground Zero-- Leftist hypocrits shriek with indignation!

American Muslims may be the very soul of moderation. But I don’t think it’s unreasonable for Americans to ask for more from (allegedly) “peaceful” Cordoba House jihadists than insincere bromides and disingenuous whitewashing of uncomfortable elements of Islamic sharia law, as practiced by the Cordoba House cabal and their financial sponsors.

A genuine tiny minority of anti-jihadist Muslims may be found @
http://secularislam.org/blog/post/SI_Blog/21/The-St-Petersburg-Declaration

Americans remain breathless in anticipation of the sharia law vendors of Cordoba House supporting this genuinely tiny minority of their co-religionists-- but don’t hold your breath.

When will areligious Leftists support Secular Islam advocates' right to live free from the sharia law intimidation of Cordoba House Islamo-supremacists?

Be advised these sharia-fascists have their eyes on your throat, too.

"Ye blind guides, that strain out the gnat, and swallow the camel!" [Matthew 23:24]

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for taking away my First Amendment rights, Mr. Christian Sharia Crusader.

It is OH-SO-AMERICAN to try to take away my rights.

Thanks a lot.

Now please. Leave.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Leftists support this Islamo-fascist desecration of Ground Zero because they hate America and have formed an Unholy Alliance with Islamo-supremacists.
http://www.amazon.com/Unholy-Alliance-Radical-Islam-American/dp/089526076X

In contrast, authentic (traditional) liberals fight against sharia law advocates. For that reason, The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which is representing a New York City firefighter who survived the 9-11 terrorist attacks, said today's vote by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission is deeply offensive to many of the victims and families of the 9-11 tragedy. The ACLJ is planning to file an Article 78 petition in state court to challenge the city's actions. The ACLJ will allege that there's been an abuse of discretion in the Commission's decision and the filing is expected to occur tomorrow.
http://www.aclj.org/media/pdf/Executed-LPC-Submission_20100720.pdf

This whole sharia law advocacy is un-Constitutional, and Americans understand that. No wonder Leftist-fascists support it.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

NYC agencies don't hesitate to obstruct construction of houses of worship -- at least non-Islamic ones.
http://www.jihadwatch.org/2010/08/nine-years-later-church-at-ground-zero-still-not-rebuilt-but-mad-rush-to-build-islamic-supremacist-m.html

These Leftist reprobates would sell your Catholic mother's grave to support a scatologists right to squat and plop a steaming pile of free expression.

But when patriotic Americans object to jihadists opening a 9/11 snuff porn vendor emporium (and recruitment center) on the hallowed graves of Ground Zero-- and Leftists shriek with indignation!

"Ye blind guides, that strain out the gnat, and swallow the camel!" [Matthew 23:24]

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Go away and take your bs with you.

We prefer First Amendment rights here in America.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

@Ethan: I see. Now I'm supposed to "go away." Driven from the WaPo temple by the high priests of Leftism, is that it?

Free speech for thee... but not for me?

hypocrit

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

[Ethan whined: "We prefer First Amendment rights"]

Well, excuse me your magesty! Evidently, the plurality of royalty (that calls itself Ethan) prefers to whine, as opposed to using speech. Otherwise, WE would address the arguments.

Substantive absence of rebuttal demonstrates intellectual bankruptcy.

Grade: F- (miserable failure)

/dismissed

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

boring

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Quisling

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

lightweight

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for mocking the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, Mr. Sharia Crusader.

Now please go away.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for butchering our 1st Amendment by lying about the non-existent "Freedom FROM Religion."

Doesn't exist here. Never has. Never will. Now go back to Maoist China where they DO enforce "Freedom FROM Religion."

The Dalai Lama called-- he'd like Tibet back.

numbskull

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Osama Bin Laden called. He wants his anti-American religious extremism back.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Islamo-supremacists must return Muslim-occupied Cyprus and the Hostage Ghost City of Famagusta (home of the desecrated St. Nicholas Cathedral)— then victimhood cultists of Cordoba House can howl about alleged “rights” to build on Ground Zero.

St. Nicholas called— he’d like his cathedral back.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Nicholas_Cathedral_Of_Cyprus

Russians crush Chechens. Chinese trample Uighurs. Real genocides unfold regularly in Africa. Iran pursues a nuclear bomb. Hamas is openly dedicated to the destruction of Israel. So is Iran. Nobody cares.

And yet the only villain as far as much of Leftists are concerned is America. Always America.

But none of these facts matter. Indeed, it’s tiring even to recount them in an environment where big lies matters more than obvious truths, where self-defense is “bigotry,” where restraint is “intolerance,” and where the heirs of Gandhi fling molotovs in support of Saddam.

Those interested in exploring the history of apartheid Islamo-supremacism in a more scholarly manner may read, “The Legacy of Jihad” @
http://www.andrewbostom.org/loj/

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Since the Muslim occupation and ethnic cleansing of Greek Cyprus began in 1974:

* at least 55 Greek churches have been converted into mosques

* another 50 Greek churches and monasteries have been converted into stables, stores, hostels, museums, or have been demolished

* the cemeteries of at least 25 Greek villages have been desecrated and destroyed

* innumerable icons, religious artifacts and all kinds of archaeological treasures have been stolen and smuggled abroad
illegal excavations and smuggling of antiquities is openly taking place all the time with the involvement of the occupying forces

* all Greek place names contrary to all historical and cultural reason were converted into Turkish ones.

VIDEO: Famagusta, The Hostage Ghost City of Europe
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcfBJ7DimB8

Why don’t Leftists howl about the continuing cultural rape and occupation of northern Cyprus? Priceless antiquities have been pillaged; Greeks have been driven out of their homes; ancient churches have been converted into mosques; and the thriving resort of Famagusta transformed into a ghost town. Nobody cares.

Instead, Leftists obsess over the trumped-up plight of Cordoba House jihadists— apartheid Islamo-supremacists committed to replacing the US Constitution with sharia law.

grotesque

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

"in an environment where big lies matters more than obvious truths"

You mean like in the current environment where your big lies about the First Amendment matter more than the obvious truth that because of the Establishment Clause of the Constitution I am free to worship any religion or no religion at all?

You mean like that type of environment?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

No. I mean what I wrote. I meant BIG OBVIOUS LIES like Ethan's absurd rewrite of the Establishment Clause to mean freedom FROM [sic] religion.

fool

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Am I allowed to be an atheist under the Constitution?

Yes or no.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

The answer is obviously YES.

Freedom FROM religion.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Government may neither allow nor disallow Ethan's right to any belief system. That right is inalienable.

Our Constitution guarantees freedom OF religion. Unlike Maoist China, there is no right to freedom FROM religion.

Repeating your lie does not make it true.

fool

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

If atheism is Ethan's religion, then others (including government) have no inalienable right to freedom FROM Ethan's belief.

Freedom OF religion guarantees Ethan may believe atheism anywhere he wants. Freedom FROM religion would permit government to restrict his belief from the public square.

Try harder.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 9, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

"Government may neither allow nor disallow Ethan's right to any belief system. That right is inalienable."

Exactly.

Why do you want to force all of America to worship your religion, Mr. Taliban?

Why are you persecuting Americans with your extremist rhetoric?

Because you hate Real America, that's why.

You prefer to live in a Fantasy America where there are only white Christians and nobody else.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 9, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Going Backward When We Should Be Going Forward

"NO WAY!!!" That was my reaction when I read in the Wall Street Journal that counties, cities, and towns have decided instead of ponying up the money to fix decaying roads that they'll simply rip them up and revert them to gravel. Then I read in the New York Times that Colorado Springs is turning off a third of its street lights. Clayton County, a suburb of Atlanta, completely shut down its bus system, stranding 84,000 daily riders. Public schools in Hawaii shut down 17 Fridays last year. In Colorado Springs, where they've drastically cut their police force, estimates show a 23% chance that all patrol units will be busy when someone calls the police. Again, all I can think is "NO WAY!!!"

Now I understand the necessity of fiscal prudence. But if we destroy American businesses' ability to compete (by unpaving the roads they use to deliver their wares, for example) or we make our cities unattractive for global companies (by shutting off streetlights, for example), or we fail to educate the next generation of American competitors, then we are destroying the government's revenue base - making everything worse in the end.

So let's get together and think about some innovative ways to rebuild, maintain, and extend the kind of infrastructure we need to compete even when governments' coffers are bare. Some ideas? What about public-private-partnerships? Or demand management (including, for example, use-based pricing structures). Or, as Paul Krugman has suggested, selling Treasury bonds and distributing the proceeds to cash-strapped state and local governments. Or the creation of a national infrastructure bank that would provide low-cost loans for public or private entities to build and operate critical infrastructure.

I certainly don't have all the answers, but the point is that there are things we can do to be fiscally prudent and protect America's competitiveness. If we don't evoke that quintessentially American "we can do anything" attitude now I do fear that we will be, as Krugman suggested, "on the unlit, unpaved road to nowhere."

http://www.arizonaic.org/blog/275-going-backward-when-we-should-be-going-forward

Posted by: MyAIC | August 10, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

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