I Vow To Vote No on Prop 8, a statewide ballot initiative that is intending to amend the California constitution to ban marriage for gay and lesbian couples. Gay and lesbian couples deserve the same fundamental freedoms that all Californians enjoy. I hereby Vow To Vote No on any constitutional amendment that stands in the way of equality for all.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama says “mental distress” should not qualify as a justification for late-term abortions, a key distinction not embraced by many supporters of abortion rights.
In an interview this week with “Relevant,” a Christian magazine, Obama said prohibitions on late-term abortions must contain “a strict, well defined exception for the health of the mother.”
Obama then added: “Now, I don’t think that ‘mental distress’ qualifies as the health of the mother. I think it has to be a serious physical issue that arises in pregnancy, where there are real, significant problems to the mother carrying that child to term.”
So much for mental health parity.
h/t Melissa McEwan.
Reporter: You said that mental distress shouldn’t be a reason for late-term abortion?
Obama: “My only point is this — historically I have been a strong believer in a women’s right to choose with her doctor, her pastor and her family. And it is…I have consistently been saying that you have to have a health exception on many significant restrictions or bans on abortions including late-term abortions.
In the past there has been some fear on the part of people who, not only people who are anti-abortion, but people who may be in the middle, that that means that if a woman just doesn’t feel good then that is an exception. That’s never been the case.
I don’t think that is how it has been interpreted. My only point is that in an area like partial-birth abortion having a mental, having a health exception can be defined rigorously. It can be defined through physical health, It can be defined by serious clinical mental-health diseases. It is not just a matter of feeling blue. I don’t think that’s how pro-choice folks have interpreted it. I don’t think that’s how the courts have interpreted it and I think that’s important to emphasize and understand.
Update (July 3): Barack Obama replies:
I want to take this opportunity to speak directly to those of you who oppose my decision to support the FISA compromise.
This was not an easy call for me. I know that the FISA bill that passed the House is far from perfect. I wouldn’t have drafted the legislation like this, and it does not resolve all of the concerns that we have about President Bush’s abuse of executive power. It grants retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies that may have violated the law by cooperating with the Bush Administration’s program of warrantless wiretapping. This potentially weakens the deterrent effect of the law and removes an important tool for the American people to demand accountability for past abuses. That’s why I support striking Title II from the bill, and will work with Chris Dodd, Jeff Bingaman and others in an effort to remove this provision in the Senate. Read the rest of this entry »
WASHINGTON — The presidential campaigns of Senators Barack Obama and John McCain on Sunday rejected an invitation for a town-hall-style meeting in Manhattan that had been proposed by ABC News and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York.
* * *
Bill Burton, a spokesman for the Obama campaign said, “Both campaigns have indicated that any additional appearances will be open to all networks for broadcast on TV or Internet like the presidential commission debates rather than sponsored by a single network or news organization.”
Tucker Bounds, a spokesman for the McCain campaign, echoed that sentiment, saying, “Both campaigns agree the town hall meetings will be open to press but not sponsored or moderated by the press.
Just a note. I withdraw all endorsements. Figure it out.
California Cannabis Hemp & Health Initiative 2008
AN ACT TO AMEND THE HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE OF CALIFORNIA:
I. Add Section 11362.6 to the Health and Safety Code of California, any laws or policies to the contrary notwithstanding:
1. No person, individual, or corporate entity shall be arrested or prosecuted, be denied any right or privilege, nor be subject to any criminal or civil penalties for the possession, cultivation, transportation, distribution, or consumption of cannabis hemp marijuana, including:
(a) Cannabis hemp industrial products.
(b) Cannabis hemp medicinal preparations.
(c) Cannabis hemp nutritional products.
(d) Cannabis hemp religious and spiritual products.
(e) Cannabis hemp recreational and euphoric use and products.
2. Definition of terms:
(a) The terms “cannabis hemp” and “cannabis hemp marijuana” mean the natural, non-genetically modified plant hemp, cannabis, marihuana, marijuana, cannabis sativa L, cannabis Americana, cannabis chinensis, cannabis indica, cannabis ruderalis, cannabis sativa, or any variety of cannabis, including any derivative, concentrate, extract, flower, leaf, particle, preparation, resin, root, salt, seed, stalk, stem, or any product thereof.
(b) The term “cannabis hemp industrial products” means all products made from cannabis hemp that are not designed or intended for human consumption, including, but not limited to: clothing, building materials, paper, fiber, fuel, lubricants, plastics, paint, seed for cultivation, animal feed, veterinary medicine, oil, or any other product that is not designed for internal human consumption; as well as cannabis hemp plants used for crop rotation, erosion control, pest control, weed control, or any other horticultural or environmental purposes, for example, the reversal of the Greenhouse Effect and toxic soil reclamation.
(c) The term “cannabis hemp medicinal preparations” means all products made from cannabis hemp that are designed, intended, or used for human consumption for the treatment of any human disease or condition, for pain relief, or for any healing purpose, including but not limited to the treatment or relief of: Alzheimer’s and pre-Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, arthritis, asthma, cramps, epilepsy, glaucoma, migraine, multiple sclerosis, nausea, premenstrual syndrome, side effects of cancer chemotherapy, fibromyalgia, sickle cell anemia, spasticity, spinal injury, stress, easement of post-traumatic stress disorder, Tourette syndrome, attention deficit disorder, immunodeficiency, wasting syndrome from AIDS or anorexia; use as an antibiotic, antibacterial, anti-viral, or anti-emetic; as a healing agent, or as an adjunct to any medical or herbal treatment. Mental conditions not limited to bipolar, depression, attention deficit disorder, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, shall be conditions considered for medical use.
(d) The term “cannabis hemp nutritional products” means cannabis hemp for consumption by humans and animals as food, including but not limited to: seed, seed protein, seed oil, essential fatty acids, seed cake, dietary fiber, or any preparation or extract thereof.
(e) The term “cannabis hemp euphoric products” means cannabis hemp intended for personal recreational or religious use, other than cannabis hemp industrial products, cannabis hemp medicinal preparations, or cannabis hemp nutritional products.
(f) The term “personal use” means the internal consumption of cannabis hemp by people 21 years of age or older for any relaxational, meditative, religious, spiritual, recreational, or other purpose other than sale.
(g) The term “commercial production” means the production of cannabis hemp products for sale or profit under the conditions of these provisions.
3. Industrial cannabis hemp farmers, manufacturers, processors, and distributors shall not be subject to any special zoning requirement, licensing fee, or tax that is excessive, discriminatory, or prohibitive.
4. Cannabis hemp medicinal preparations are hereby restored to the list of available medicines in California. Licensed physicians shall not be penalized for, nor restricted from, prescribing or recommending cannabis hemp for medical purposes to any patient, regardless of age. No tax shall be applied to prescribed cannabis hemp medicinal preparations. Medical research shall be encouraged. No recommending physician shall be subject to any professional licensing review or hearing as a result of recommending or approving medical use of cannabis hemp marijuana.
5. Personal use of cannabis hemp euphoric products.
(a) No permit, license, or tax shall be required for the non-commercial cultivation, transportation, distribution, or consumption of cannabis hemp.
(b) Testing for inactive and/or inert residual cannabis metabolites shall not be required for employment or insurance, nor be considered in determining employment, other impairment, or intoxication.
(c) When a person falls within the conditions of these exceptions, the offense laws do not apply and only the exception laws apply.
6. Use of cannabis hemp products for religious or spiritual purposes shall be considered an inalienable right; and shall be protected by the full force of the State and Federal Constitutions.
7. Commerce in cannabis hemp euphoric products shall be limited to adults, 21 years of age and older, and shall be regulated in a manner analogous to California’s wine industry model. For the purpose of distinguishing personal from commercial production, 99 flowering female plants and 12 pounds of dried, cured cannabis hemp flowers, bud, not leaf, produced per adult, 21 years of age and older, per year shall be considered as being for personal use.
8. The manufacture, marketing, distribution, or sales between adults of equipment or accessories designed to assist in the planting, cultivation, harvesting, curing, processing, packaging, storage, analysis, consumption, or transportation of cannabis hemp plants, industrial cannabis hemp products, cannabis hemp medicinal preparations, cannabis hemp nutritional products, cannabis hemp euphoric products, or any cannabis hemp product shall not be prohibited.
9. No California law enforcement personnel or funds shall be used to assist or aid and abet in the enforcement of Federal cannabis hemp marijuana laws involving acts which are hereby no longer illegal in the State of California.
10. Any person who threatens the enjoyment of these provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor. The maximum penalties and fines of a misdemeanor may be imposed.
II. Repeal, delete, and expunge any and all existing statutory laws that conflict with the provisions of this initiative.
1. Enactment of this initiative shall include: amnesty, immediate release from prison, jail, parole, and probation, and clearing, expungement, and deletion of all criminal records for all persons currently charged with, or convicted of any non-violent cannabis hemp marijuana offenses included in this initiative which are hereby no longer illegal in the State of California. People who fall within this category that triggered an original sentence are included within this provision.
2. Within 60 days of the passage of this Act, the Attorney General shall develop and distribute a one-page application, providing for the destruction of all cannabis hemp marijuana criminal records in California for any such offense covered by this Act. Such forms shall be distributed to district and city attorneys and made available at all police departments in the State to persons hereby affected. Upon filing such form with any Superior Court and a payment of a fee of $10.00, the Court shall liberally construe these provisions to benefit the defendant in furtherance of the amnesty and dismissal provision of this section. Upon the Court’s ruling under this provision the arrest record shall be set aside and be destroyed. Such persons may then truthfully state that they have never been arrested or convicted of any cannabis hemp marijuana related offense which is hereby no longer illegal in the State of California. This shall be deemed to be a finding of factual innocence under California Penal Code Section 851.8 et seq.
III. The legislature is authorized upon thorough investigation, to enact legislation using reasonable standards to:
1. License concessionary establishments to distribute cannabis hemp euphoric products in a manner analogous to California’s wine industry model. Sufficient community outlets shall be licensed to provide reasonable commercial access to persons of legal age, so as to discourage and prevent the misuse of, and illicit traffic in, such products. Any license or permit fee required by the State for commercial production, distribution or use shall not exceed $1,000.00.
2. Place an excise tax on commercial sale of cannabis hemp euphoric products, analogous to California’s wine industry model, so long as no excise tax or combination of excise taxes shall exceed $10.00 per ounce.
3. Determine an acceptable and uniform standard of impairment based on performance testing, to restrict persons impaired by cannabis hemp euphoric products from operating a motor vehicle or heavy machinery, or otherwise engaging in conduct that may affect public safety.
4. Regulate the personal use of cannabis hemp euphoric products in enclosed and/or restricted public places.
IV. Pursuant to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United States, the people of California hereby repudiate and challenge Federal cannabis hemp marijuana prohibitions that conflict with this Act.
V. Severability: If any provision of this Act, or the application of any such provision to any person or circumstance, shall be held invalid by any court, the remainder of this Act, to the extent it can be given effect, or the application of such provisions to persons or circumstances other than those as to which it is held invalid, shall not be affected thereby, and to this end the provisions of this Act are severable.
VI. Construction: If any rival or conflicting initiative regulating any matter addressed by this act receives the higher affirmative vote, then all non-conflicting parts shall become operative.
VII. Purpose of Act: This Act is an exercise of the police powers of the State for the protection of the safety, welfare, health, and peace of the people and the environment of the State, to protect the industrial and medicinal uses of cannabis hemp, to eliminate the unlicensed and unlawful cultivation, selling, and dispensing of cannabis hemp; and to encourage temperance in the consumption of cannabis hemp euphoric products. It is hereby declared that the subject matter of this Act involves, in the highest degree, the ecological, economic, social, and moral well-being and safety of the State and of all its people. All provisions of this Act shall be liberally construed for the accomplishment of these purposes: to respect human rights, to promote tolerance, and to end cannabis hemp prohibition.
George Clayton Johnson
Ronnie Lee Smith
Michael S. Jolson
Seeva Marie Cherms
Russ Feingold (h/t Josh Marshall @ TPM):
I will vote against the nomination of Judge Mukasey to be the next Attorney General. This was a difficult decision, as Judge Mukasey has many impressive qualities. He is intelligent and experienced and appears to understand the need to depoliticize the Department of Justice and restore its credibility and reputation.
At this point in our history, however, the country also needs an Attorney General who will tell the President that he cannot ignore the laws passed by Congress. Unfortunately, Judge Mukasey was unwilling to reject the extreme and dangerous theories of executive power that this administration has put forward.
The nation’s top law enforcement officer must be able to stand up to a chief executive who thinks he is above the law. The rule of law is too important to our country’s history and to its future to compromise on that bedrock principle.
All of them are on our blogroll here. Congratulations to one and all for being finalists.
Cannabis prohibition sends the wrong message to children; it teaches them that it is better to drink alcohol or smoke tobacco, when we know that cannabis is safer. We should encourage children to wait until they are adults to make adult decisions with adult consequences, but we should educate them with honesty. Teaching them falsehoods about cannabis sends the wrong message to children; it teaches them not to trust us when we tell them the very serious dangers of drugs like heroin or cocaine. Criminal punishments for adult possession and use of cannabis teach our children that their government is unjust.
Barbara O’Brien @ The Mahablog on the current slate of Democratic candidates.
My own thoughts are similar to hers on this as far as the nomination; as for the general election I would not cast a vote for Hillary Clinton.
Mustang Bobby @ Shakesville:
By the way, in all of this, I haven’t heard a word of outrage or a tearful plea for mercy from General Petraeus himself. I’m pretty sure that he didn’t get to be a general in the United States Army by letting a schoolyard name-calling taunt get to him.
Watch MSNBC coverage of George Bush trying to be offended on behalf of his toady:
As for the Democratic members of the senate who voted with the idiots to condemn the first amendment, wake up.
MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE — In his first public statement on the subject, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama pledged to end medical marijuana raids in the 12 states that have medical marijuana laws Tuesday at a campaign event during a Nashua Pride minor league baseball game.
The Illinois senator’s statement means all eight Democratic candidates have now voiced support for the 12 states with medical marijuana laws. Republican candidates Rep. Ron Paul (Texas), Rep. Tom Tancredo (Colo.) and former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson have all vowed to end medical marijuana raids as well.
On Friday, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, who signed legislation in April making his the 12th medical marijuana state, wrote to President Bush asking him to end federal raids in medical marijuana states.
“Respected physicians and government officials should not fear going to jail for acting compassionately and caring for our most vulnerable citizens,” Richardson wrote. “Nor should those most vulnerable of citizens fear their government because they take the medicine they need.”
Obama’s pledge came as a response to a question from Nashua resident and Granite Staters for Medical Marijuana volunteer Scott Turner, who asked the senator what he would do to stop the federal government from putting seriously ill people like Turner in prison in states where medical marijuana is legal.
“I would not have the Justice Department prosecuting and raiding medical marijuana users,” Obama said. “It’s not a good use of our resources.”
“For the first time in history, the leaders of one of our nation’s major parties have unanimously called for an end to the federal prosecution of medical marijuana patients,” GSMM campaign manager Stuart Cooper, from Manchester, said. “New Hampshire voters and medical professionals effectively sent a clear message that we would not support a candidate who would arrest – rather than protect – our nation’s most seriously ill citizens. Compassion and reason are finally overcoming politics and propaganda.”
Federal intrusion into medical marijuana states has been on the rise this summer, with DEA raids taking place in several counties in California and Oregon. Recently, the DEA also began threatening landlords who lease space to medical marijuana dispensaries – legal under state law – with seizure of their property, a move condemned in a Los Angeles Times editorial as “a deplorable new bullying tactic.”
Based in Manchester, New Hampshire, Granite Staters for Medical Marijuana is a grassroots coalition of New Hampshire patients, medical professionals and activists. GSMM is organizing during the New Hampshire presidential primary campaign to raise awareness of the need for federal action to protect medical marijuana patients. For further information, please see: http://www.GraniteStaters.com
Debra Bowen is restoring honest elections to California. Thank you.
Update: BradBlog has replacement video.
Rush Holt’s Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act of 2007 …
Requires the voting system to require the use of or produce an individual, durable, voter-verified paper ballot of the voter’s vote, created by or made available for inspection and verification by the voter before the voter’s vote is cast and counted. Requires the voting system to provide the voter with an opportunity to correct any system-made error in the voter-verified paper ballot before it is permanently preserved.
Requires each ballot produced to be: (1) suitable for a manual audit equivalent to that of a paper ballot voting system; and (2) counted by hand in any recount or audit conducted with respect to any federal election.
Sounds good to me.
Hat-tip to driftglass.
A California judge is likely to order a Berkeley city initiative back on the ballot because of local officials’ mishandling of electronic voting machine data, a public-interest lawyer arguing the case said Friday.
In a preliminary ruling Thursday, Judge Winifred Smith of the Alameda County Superior Court indicated she would nullify the defeat of a medical marijuana proposal in Berkeley in 2004 and order the measure put back on the ballot in a later election. A hearing on Friday morning in advance of a final ruling brought out nothing that indicated Smith would deviate from her preliminary decision, said attorney Gregory Luke, who is representing Americans for Safe Access. The medical-marijuana advocacy group is suing the county, assisted by the technology rights group Electronic Frontier Foundation.
The case points to the dangers of electronic voting systems, which make it harder to ensure fair elections, Luke said. Electronic voting machines have been widely adopted in the U.S. since the disputed presidential election of 2000. Laws in California and some other states now require paper records of all votes, but the California law wasn’t in place for the Berkeley election.
So, I’m going to issue this challenge to my readers and fellow bloggers: If you think this liberal Democrat should give Mr. Ryan a run for his money, I’d like you to spread the word. Political bloggers blog because they want to be catalysts for political change and spread their messages through the internets; so, let’s use this medium for all it’s worth! Link this post to every lefty blog you read. Link to this post in a bulletin with your MySpace accounts. E-mail a link to this post to all your friends, families and acquaintances who still believes there’s some hope left for this country and for the way of life we once knew. If we, as bloggers, readers of blogs, and citizens of this nation can make a difference on the netroots level, then by golly, let’s do it!
I pledge to you that I will run against Paul Ryan as a Democrat (no third party — I have faith that we can win our party back as well as our country) if together we can drum up enough interest and commitment, because let’s face it — I haven’t the bank account or the power to do it on my own.
Are we up to the challenge?
Michele (Micki) Watters
East Troy, Wisconsin
mixter_64 [AT] yahoo [DOT] com
Update: Never mind.
I know I should not write on politics, but this hits me where I live. I was talking with a friend about his affair with a married woman whose husband is assigned away from the US. It is a sad story, and it is one I have heard mirrored many times. It is one with all the other stories that, like mad cats drawn from the same sack, scratch and claw at us. So forgive me being weak, and writing on a topic that should be forbidden to anyone who must by profession be faceless, blank and without core or surface soul. Forgive me for saying this.
Come home America, come home.
It is time to come home from distant wars against fictions and phantoms. It is time to come home to your wives who miss you, to your children who need you, to your families that feel the pain of missing souls.
It is time to come home America, home to the cities that have been flooded, the forests left untended, the fields left untilled. It is time to come home America, to the work left undone, the minds left unschooled. It is time to come America, to the home you did not leave behind, because no home ever lasts if left unrepaired.
It is time to come home America, and when you do, you will ask how you ever let that home be put into hands such as the ones that now have it. You will wonder at how they ever seemed to be giants, and on the back of which ant the cameras were mounted to make them look that way.
It is time America to come home. Home to the words which we written on parchment, printed on paper, but engraved on hearts and minds, with stylus of firearms, and ink mixed of blood and gunpowder: “when it becomes destructive to these ends… to alter or abolish it.”
Look at the man who wields the seal of 13 arrows and 13 stars, of 13 leaves and 13 olives, of 13 stripes and countless hopes and dreams. Ask yourself a single question: is he worthy of placing your sons lives in his hands? Hands that have signed so many laws unjust, unwise and unAmerican. Hands which have rubber stamped commands from other unelected. Ask yourself if his words are to be trusted, coming from the same mouth that has spat out so many of us on to the ground.
I have spent my life studying ruins, and I feel this home becoming one. I have spent my life studying kings, and know their portraits by heart. And in history’s wake I feel, I know and must believe because without this belief there is no hope in me: that all the crosses of gold and silver crowns, must in history’s turn be struck down. But I am not the one to do it, I can only call to you, who are still across the sea, or buried in your own affairs, to look up, and see. See that we are losing our America, from mountains blasted for blacker coal, to roads that crack and creak, to nursing wards for veterans that stink and reek, to schools that are dour and bleak.
Come home America, while there is yet time, let not the sands cover us, nor the waters wash us away. It is not out there that our freedom lives, but here. It is not a Vatican in Baghdad that we must build, but a shining city on hill which we must rebuild, our golden domes pealing, our silver stars tarnished, our private places violated by rude disruption, for an adventure we did not wish, nor want. Let dead caesars have their triumphs, let forgotten pharaohs have their obelisks. Let emperors have their might tombs, let them have them, one and all their arcs and boulevards.
Ask your son, your daughter, your wife, your lover. Each will tell you what I say here. “I don’t know why were are there, I just want you home.”
To our public servants I can only ask: “What do you think we changed the government for? We demanded only a few simple things. End the flow of corruption, end the war, and end the reign of error.” You have voted for another year for corruption to flow, already. You have not voted to end the war, yet. You have said that you will not act to remove those who have committed hight crimes and misdemeanors, ever. We sent you once to Washington, we can send you right back home again if you forget why we sent you there.
I don’t know what else to say, it is an old story, of Ulysses coming home, and cleaning the house of suitors that sought to suck the blood and treasure from his house and steal his wife. To servants who had forgotten their duties, and to all the animals save two that had forgotten his scent. He came home and bent his bow and slew the suitors on sight. But to bend his bow, the great hero first, had to come home.
Please, please, please. It is time to set right what has gone so horribly wrong.
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.— That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.— Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Robert Treat Paine
Presidential Scholars tell him to stop committing crimes against humanity:
The students had been invited to the East Room to hear the president speak about his effort to win congressional reauthorization of his education law known as No Child Left Behind.
The handwritten letter said the students “believe we have a responsibility to voice our convictions.”
“We do not want America to represent torture. We urge you to do all in your power to stop violations of the human rights of detainees, to cease illegal renditions, and to apply the Geneva Convention to all detainees, including those designated enemy combatants,” the letter said.
The designation as a Presidential Scholar is one of the nation’s highest honors for graduating high school students. Each year the program selects one male and one female student from each state, the, , Americans living abroad, 15 at-large students, and up to 20 students in the arts on the basis of outstanding scholarship, service, leadership and creativity.
Daniel Larison of Eunomia:
Newsweek’s latest poll has some interesting numbers. Keeping in mind how little polls mean and how relatively unreliable polls of merely registered voters are, the poll shows that the four named Republican candidates continue to lose against the three named Democratic candidates, no matter the matchup.
It’s a pretty comprehensive poll and I recommend you check it out. Bottom line numbers indicate that unless something expected happens, the Republican party does not have a viable candidate for president in 2008.
Inoculate, impeach, and remove. Don’t wait until 2008.
Mike Gravel is a decent man. He should not be president, but he should be respected.
Hat-tip to Melissa McEwan.
Asked by a crowd member if he would continue the Bush administration practice of conducting raids against those who use marijuana for medicinal purposes, Edwards said he would not. In those states where voters had approved medicinal marijuana, he said he would honor the democratic process.
(And it turns out,
we share a birthday.)
Correction: His birthday is the day before mine.
Hat-tip Nicole Belle.
Do you favor a withdrawal of all United States military from Iraq within the next six months? (Republicans Only)
Do you favor a withdrawal of all United States military from Iraq within the next six months? (Democrats Only)
Jon Swift has an idea:
It is the Second Amendment that makes our country free. A Global Second Amendment would make the world free. Nuclear proliferation could be the key to making the world safe for democratic proliferation.
We’d have to accept a Nuclear Regulatory Body, being necessary to the security of a free World.
“Congress owes it to the American people to take down the curtain of secrecy surrounding these shadow forces that often act in the name and on the payroll of the people of this country.”
Hat-tip Cookie Jill.