Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Says Ron Paul Is Right

So he didn't actually say that (via The Root). But what did happen was that he bolstered a point Ron Paul made almost a year ago:

Despite the gains of the abolition of slavery and the three Reconstruction amendments to the Constitution, Jim Crow segregation had pervaded every aspect of American society since the 1890s. And the military was no exception. When black men volunteered for duty or were drafted following the Japanese sneak attack, they were relegated to segregated divisions and combat support roles, such as cook, quartermaster and grave-digging duty. The military was as segregated as the Deep South.
Ron Paul on C-Span in 2012 (via Politic365):
“But when you look at the problems, the government is basically the problem, even with the racial problems,” Paul said on the Washington Journal.

“First it endorsed and legalized slavery. And then it comes along and it was the Jim Crow laws that provided the integration. Who was the biggest segregationist? It was our military up until after World War II.”

The claim that the U.S. Armed Services was the “biggest segregationist” was one that was generally correct, an expert told

“Ron Paul is correct.  There was a policy of segregation in the U.S. Armed Forces during the Second World War,” said William Bundy, a professor at the U.S. Naval War College.  “However, that is only part of the story.”

“I would say to you that the matter of race in the military is kind of a long story that is not told very easily. And it really stretches back to the Revolutionary War to where we are today.”

Bundy, himself being the third African-American naval officer to command a submarine, said that military can be seeing as a reflection of society.

“Life for Blacks in the service has generally reflected the treatment of Blacks in the population of these United States,” he wrote in an e-mail.

While several ships were segregated in the Navy during World War II there were also Navy groups that started to integrate, he explained.

Bundy pointed to an article written by Morris J. MacGregor, Jr. for the U.S. Army Center of Military History which explained that Army policy during World War II was also a policy of segregation, and at times defended it in the name of “military efficiency.”

However, the Army was also the biggest employer of minorities during the Second World War.
Additionally, Bundy explained that black military achievement and advancement has existed throughout U.S. Armed Services history, pointing to The Red Tails, otherwise known as the Tuskegee Airmen serving in World War II, and the U.S.S. Mason, a naval warship with a predominantly African-American crew.

“However, it was Eleanor Roosevelt, President Harry Truman and others who lead change during and after the war over the objections of leaders who were wed to their times that embraced the separation of the races,” Bundy said, noting that Truman signed Executive Order 9981 which called for the desegregation of the military.

Saying Lincoln Freed the Slaves is Like Saying Obama Ended the War in Iraq

Saying Lincoln freed the slaves is like saying Obama ended the war in Iraq.

Truth be told...

...Lincoln never thought blacks to be equal and once said that if he could "save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it."
Myth #1: Lincoln invaded the South to free the slaves. Ending slavery and racial injustice is not why the North invaded. As Lincoln wrote to Horace Greeley on Aug. 22, 1862: "My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and it is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it"
Congress announced to the world on July 22, 1861, that the purpose of the war was not "interfering with the rights or established institutions of those states" (i.e., slavery), but to preserve the Union "with the rights of the several states unimpaired."
Myth #3: Lincoln championed equality and natural rights. His words and, more important, his actions, repudiate this myth. "I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and black races," he announced in his Aug. 21, 1858, debate with Stephen Douglas. "I, as well as Judge Douglas, am in favor of the race to which I belong having the superior position." And, "Free them [slaves] and make them politically and socially our equals? My own feelings will not admit of this. We cannot, then, make them equals."
In Springfield, Ill., on July 17, 1858, Lincoln said, "What I would most desire would be the separation of the white and black races." On Sept. 18, 1858, in Charleston, Ill., he said: "I will to the very last stand by the law of this state, which forbids the marrying of white people with Negroes."
 Lincoln supported the Illinois Constitution, which prohibited the emigration of black people into the state, and he also supported the Illinois Black Codes, which deprived the small number of free blacks in the state any semblance of citizenship. He strongly supported the Fugitive Slave Act, which compelled Northern states to capture runaway slaves and return them to their owners. In his First Inaugural he pledged his support of a proposed constitutional amendment that had just passed the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives that would have prohibited the federal government from ever having the power "to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State." In his First Inaugural Lincoln advocated making this amendment "express and irrevocable."
Lincoln was also a lifelong advocate of "colonization" or shipping all black people to Africa, Central America, Haiti--anywhere but here. "I cannot make it better known than it already is," he stated in a Dec. 1, 1862, Message to Congress, "that I strongly favor colonization." To Lincoln, blacks could be "equal," but not in the United States.
...And President Obama lobbied the Iraq government to stay in longer but got booted out.
The last U.S. troops left Iraq in December 2011, while Barack Obama was president, but the “status of forces agreement” that governed the departure of U.S. troops was actually negotiated between Iraqi and U.S. officials in late 2008, under the auspices of President George W. Bush.  In fact, none other than the Huffington Post actually pointed out that as president, Obama was actually interested in keeping troops in Iraq past the agreed-upon 2011 deadline, explaining that “the president ultimately had no choice but to stick to candidate Obama's plan -- thanks, of all things, to an agreement signed by George W. Bush.” Just six months before the Bush deadline, Obama tried to foist 10,000 U.S. troops on the Iraqis past 2011.
So Republicans and Democrats are being disingenuous when they say these men did these things.

Reagan's Homeboy: His Legacy Stinks

I really enjoyed writing this article. Here's an excerpt:
The former budget director under President Ronald Reagan said something you don’t hear often from people who have worked under Reagan or from conservative politicians.  That is, that the conservative idol and oft-referred to leader of a bygone era left a “horrible legacy.”

“The thing that came out of the Reagan era, which really was a horrible legacy, was the notion that deficits didn’t matter and the rationalization that we were only trying to starve the beast and if the deficit got big enough or persistent enough or extended far enough in time, surely they would wake up and shrink the government,” said David Stockman, former Director of the Office of Management and Budget from 1981-1985, at the Cato Institute Wednesday.
 Read More: Former Reagan Official: "Reagan Era Was A Horrible Legacy" || Politic365

The chief and most original insight is his analysis of Reagan's defense build up and its connection to the Iraq war of the 1990s. I never heard anything like it before this lecture. It's pure gold. Read it for yourself.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Medea Benjamin: Before Obama, Expose AIPAC 2013

Medea Benjamin protested President Obama's speech today at National Defense University. She protested AIPAC a few months ago: 
Women’s anti-war group Code Pink and its co-founder Medea Benjamin were outside the Washington Convention Center protesting the conference, along with many other protestors, ranging from 25-75 supporters. The Orthodox Jewish group Neturei Karta and activists of Palestinian heritage joined Code Pink as well.

“Israel is a terrorist state. Israel is a racist state,” one chant shouted by protesters went.

The bulk of their activities included protesting on a loud mic against Israeli settlements in the West Bank, against a new war with Iran, and, in their view, the dangerous policies and influence of AIPAC on the U.S. Congress. Mention of Rachel Corrie, an American peace activist who was crushed by an Israeli Defense Force bulldozer in the Gaza strip in the early 2000s, was also made (whether Corrie was intentionally killed is disputed).

“You can’t even get a job in Israel if you side with peaceniks,” one male protestor said.

Benjamin also approached House Unmanned Systems Co-Chair McKeon both as he entered the conference and hours later when he exited the conference. She shouted “drone master” as he walked in the conference, and followed him (with other Code Pink members beside her) to his ride as he walked out.

Code Pink didn’t capitalize on all members of Congress walking by.

For example, Rep. Connolly stood on the lower half of the steps right in front of the where the group was protesting for almost 30 seconds. He appeared to be looking out into the street waiting for his transportation to arrive. He was surrounded by no one and visibly in plain sight to the group. The group said nothing to Connolly – a sign that the group couldn’t recognize the congressman.

At other times, the protestors were off the mark identifying government officials.

Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) who is a U.S. Senate hopeful seeking to fill Secretary of State John Kerry’s former seat, was mistaken as a senator.

“Senator Markey are you signing on to [the] Menendez bill?” one protestor shouted into the portable mic. “Please do not sign. We do not need another war!”

“The Democrats and the Republicans were wrong about Iraq. They were wrong about Afghanistan. They’re wrong about Iran,” he continued to shout at Markey.

When Rep. Levin left the building, a male protestor and self-identified Michigander shouted “Detroit doesn’t have housing! Detroit does not have free healthcare! Israel has free healthcare, free education. Why is Detroit suffering, Representative Levin, when you want to give three to six billion dollars every single year? Why is Detroit now being taken over?”

Levin replied: “With the health care act you’re going to have healthcare.” Levin was referring the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

Later, after the shouter shared more complaints, in unison the protestors shouted at Levin “work for us, not for Israel.”

“That’s a great example of how AIPAC has bought our Congress and taken our tax dollars out of cities like Detroit that are dying,” Benjamin said, adding that there’s no money for education and healthcare in Detroit
“And yet, a congressmen from Detroit comes here to bow down before AIPAC and say ‘of course, we’ll give you three billion dollars. Of course what Israel wants Israel gets,” she continued.

The group had better success with Franken who at least said he would study the bill (S. Res. 65) they wanted him to vote against.

When Benjamin told Franken that “we don’t need another war,” Franken replied that “but we also don’t need a nuclear weapon,” most likely referring to Iran.
 Read the whole story here: Medea Benjamin at Occupy AIPAC/Expose AIPAC 2013 

Monday, May 20, 2013

FBI says Holder, Obama had nothing to do with Assata Shakur decision

The Federal Bureau of Investigation says that President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder had nothing to do with putting the first black woman on the FBI’s “Most Wanted Terrorists” list for a crime she allegedly committed 40 years ago.

The move also makes Assata Shakur, previously known as Joanne Chesimard — once active in the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army in the United States at different times over 35 years ago — the first woman to be placed on the list.

“Both AG and the President has nothing to do with the selection of the list or the approval and have not been involved since the creation of the list from 2001,” an FBI public affairs official told Politic365.

However, the official added that President Obama and Holder are aware of Assata Shakur being added to the list.

The FBI conducts an “internal review” when determining who goes on the list and President Obama and Attorney General Holder aren’t necessarily involved, the official explained.

FBI: Obama, Holder Weren't Involved in "Most Wanted Terrorists" Decision || Politic365

A commenter points to this article: "Statement of Facts in the New Jersey Trial of Assata Shakur"

WCF Chapter One "Of Holy Scripture" Sunday School (Sept.-Oct. 2021)

Our text for Sunday School (also "The Confession of Faith and Catechisms") Biblical Theology Bites What is "Biblical Theology...