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Breaking the Sound Barrier

Breaking the Sound Barrier

By Amy Goodman
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Tag: Constitution

book cover

Jonathan Shapiro on the Hamdan Case

In Jonathan Mahler’s new book, George W. Bush emerges as the most lawless president in American history, the first to usurp the law as a matter of policy.

Posted on Aug 29, 2008 READ MORE


A Parting Gift to the Religious Right

From the people who brought you the Terri Schiavo spectacle, the stem-cell research stalemate and the atrocious waste of tax money on abstinence-only sex education that has been shown not to work, comes a sequel: a proposal to redefine abortion to include some of the most common forms of birth control.

Posted on Jul 28, 2008 READ MORE


Republican Song billboard
gawker.com

Enterprising GOP Troubadour Blends Poetry, Politics in ‘Republican Song’

With all the subtlety of a jackhammer, an enterprising right-wing artiste by the name of Mike Meehan has recorded an election-year anthem, “Please Don’t Vote for a Democrat,” and has launched a corresponding PR campaign via the Internet and billboard ads—like this one in noted liberal stronghold Orange County, Florida—in hopes of striking fear and indignation into the hearts of undecided voters.

 

Posted on Jul 16, 2008 READ MORE


Constitutional Compromise

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Posted on Jul 14, 2008 READ MORE


book cover

Doug Henwood on the Global Power Elite

Are we now ruled by an international “superclass” that hollows out traditional notions of national sovereignty, and whose loyalties are only to the bottom line and its own members?

Posted on Jun 27, 2008 READ MORE


A Court of Radicals

In knocking down the District of Columbia’s 32-year ban on handgun possession, the conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court have shown again their willingness to abandon precedent in order to do whatever is necessary to further the agenda of the contemporary political right.

Posted on Jun 26, 2008 READ MORE


When Common Sense Is Unconstitutional

As much as I abhor the possible real-word impact of the Supreme Court’s Second Amendment ruling, I fear that it’s probably right.

Posted on Jun 26, 2008 READ MORE


San Francsico marriage
AP photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez

Notes on a California Sea Change

Watching the couples in line for licenses in Beverly Hills on the first day of gay marriage in California, I was struck by how the scene was so commonplace, even boring—just a bunch of men and women waiting their turn at a nondescript government office.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Charles Dharapak, file

The Hedonists of Power

Washington has become Versailles. We are ruled, entertained and informed by courtiers.

Posted on Jun 23, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Brennan Linsley

A Government of Law, Not Fear

John McCain and Barack Obama’s differences over the Supreme Court’s recent Guantanamo decision speak volumes about the two candidates and their competing visions for America.

Posted on Jun 19, 2008 READ MORE


Impatient Justice

The forceful language of Justice Anthony M. Kennedy’s decision in the case granting detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp the right to contest their confinement in federal court is the voice of a Supreme Court majority that is fed up.

Posted on Jun 16, 2008 READ MORE


McCain and Obama
AP photo / Dennis Cook

The Vice Presidency: Hype and Flourishes

For two centuries, selecting vice presidential candidates was at best a mere afterthought. Hardly anyone knew of the process, if indeed one existed aside from a brief huddle by the presidential candidate with a few advisers and friends. The presidential nominees usually settled on lesser-known figures, deserved obscurities in American history.

Posted on Jun 15, 2008 READ MORE


One for the Constitution

It shouldn’t be necessary for the Supreme Court to tell the president that he can’t have individuals taken into custody, spirited to a remote prison camp and held indefinitely, with no legal right to argue that they’ve been unjustly imprisoned—not even on grounds of mistaken identity.

Posted on Jun 12, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Brennan Linsley, pool

Supreme Court Deals a Body Blow to Guantanamo

The Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, ruled Thursday that detainees at Guantanamo Bay have a right to trial in civilian courts. As Justice Anthony Kennedy of the majority wrote, “The laws and Constitution are designed to survive, and remain in force, in extraordinary times.” It has been widely speculated that such a ruling would ultimately force the closure of the detention facility.

Posted on Jun 12, 2008 READ MORE


Kucinich
AP photo / Stephan Savoia

Gore Vidal’s Article of Impeachment

On June 9, 2008, a counterrevolution began on the floor of the House of Representatives against the gas and oil crooks who had seized control of the federal government. This counterrevolution began in the exact place which had slumbered during the all-out assault on our liberties and the Constitution itself.

Posted on Jun 11, 2008 READ MORE


Obama’s Florida Co-Chair Says Yes to Impeachment

Rep. Dennis Kucinich filed articles of impeachment against President Bush this week, and he already has a taker: Barack Obama’s Florida campaign co-chair, Rep. Robert Wexler. According to Wexler: “A decision by Congress to pursue impeachment is not an option, it is a sworn duty. It is time for Congress to stand up and defend the Constitution against the blatant violations and illegalities of this Administration.”

Posted on Jun 10, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / R.D. Ward

Investigate This

As a critic of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, especially when unsubstantiated allegations of weapons of mass destruction are used to sell a war, I am no stranger to the concept of questioning authority. It’s too bad more journalists can’t say the same thing.

Posted on Jun 9, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Knows All
time.com

Adviser: McCain Backs Bush’s Wiretaps

As if 100 years in Iraq wasn’t enough, a top adviser to John McCain claims that the presumptive Republican presidential nominee supports and believes lawful Bush’s infamous warrantless wiretapping program.

Posted on Jun 6, 2008 READ MORE


The Gay Marriage Paradox

Imagine what it would be like not to be able to marry the person with whom you want to spend the rest of your life. Then imagine how tens of thousands of gays and lesbians in California must have felt last week when the California Supreme Court declared that homosexuals have a right to marriage under the state’s constitution.

Posted on May 18, 2008 READ MORE


klansmen over hollywood
Flickr / pingnews.com and PredatorsHockey

Could L.A. Accidentally Elect a White Separatist?

Not many people pay attention to judicial elections, especially one held in June, and it’s for that reason that some Angelenos are worried about the campaign of William Johnson. A white separatist, Johnson is apparently counting on a lack of attention and the support of Ron Paul’s local organization to help him to victory.

Posted on May 18, 2008 READ MORE


book cover
press.princeton.edu

Chalmers Johnson on Our ‘Managed Democracy’

Sheldon Wolin’s new book offers a controversial but ultimately convincing diagnosis of how America’s democracy has succumbed to an unacknowledged totalitarian temptation.

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / bobster1985

California Court Ends Gay Marriage Ban

The California Supreme Court has ruled that gays and lesbians have a right to marry. Chief Justice Ronald M. George aptly explained the landmark 4-3 decision: “Even the most familiar ... traditions often mask an unfairness and inequality that frequently is not recognized or appreciated by those not directly harmed.”

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT
Flickr / openDemocracy

Putin Sticks Around

A day after giving up Russia’s presidency (as required by that pesky constitution), Vladimir Putin assumed the role of prime minister. Anyone want to bet that doesn’t suddenly become the most powerful job in Russia?

Posted on May 8, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley

The Pentagon vs. America

Former Marine and U.N. weapons inspector Scott Ritter has spoken out vehemently against the war, so it surprises some that he still embraces military service. In this article, Ritter explains why opposition to a war doesn’t mean lack of patriotism or a failure to “support the troops” and the services in which they serve.

Posted on May 5, 2008 READ MORE


Lethal Injection Gurney
Arizona Department of Corrections

Thou Shalt Kill

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that lethal injection cannot be included under the constitutional amendment barring cruel and unusual punishment, clearing the way for the lifting of state moratoriums on executions that were installed last September.

Posted on Apr 16, 2008 READ MORE


Petraeus
Staff Sgt D. Myles Cullen, U.S. Air Force

Petraeus: ‘There Are Risks Beyond Iraq’

Gen. David Petraeus tells NBC‘s Brian Williams that if ordered by the president to get out of Iraq, he could: “Absolutely. ... I firmly believe whoever it is that is elected in the fall will sit down and look at the various interests, try to figure out the competing risks, because there are risks beyond Iraq.”

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Kevorkian
AP photo / Paul Saneya

Kevorkian Sets Sights on Congress

Dr. Jack Kevorkian, whose controversial work as a euthanasia advocate earned him both the nickname “Dr. Death” and time in the slammer, has a new crusade: to win a seat in Congress. Stranger things have been known to happen in American politics.

Posted on Mar 24, 2008 READ MORE


supreme court
Flickr / dbking

Supreme Court Considers Second Amendment

The Supreme Court examined the District of Columbia’s handgun ban Tuesday, a case that could at last yield a conclusive ruling on the Second Amendment. So far, it doesn’t look good for gun control advocates.

Posted on Mar 18, 2008 READ MORE


Hillary’s Baggage

When you Google the phrase “unconstitutional third term,” you get references to a rogue’s gallery of strongman leaders—Vladimir Putin, Alberto Fujimori, Olusegun Obasanjo, Islam Karimov, Hugo Chavez—who in recent years at least have flirted with the idea of holding on to power beyond statutory limits. Now the name Bill Clinton pops up, too.

Posted on Feb 4, 2008 READ MORE


The End of Privacy

It’s not enough for George W. Bush’s government to eavesdrop on phone calls, monitor financial transactions and sneak a peek at other people’s e-mails. Now the administration says it needs to monitor all Internet activity in the United States. That means you and everything you do online.

Posted on Jan 24, 2008 READ MORE


Huckabee
AP photo / Alex Brandon

Huckabee on the Slippery Slope of Gay Marriage

Here’s further evidence that Mike Huckabee isn’t exactly worried about currying favor with Log Cabin Republicans: In an interview with Beliefnet.com, the conservative presidential candidate made the woefully familiar argument that condoning gay marriage is akin to condoning bestiality.

Posted on Jan 17, 2008 READ MORE


Nepalese Monarchy Ousted in Vote

Nepal’s long-standing monarchy is about to become obsolete, after more than two-thirds of the country’s provisional parliament voted to amend the constitution and give the government the power to abolish the monarchy and establish a “federal democratic republican state” instead.

Posted on Dec 28, 2007 READ MORE


The Path to a National Popular Vote

Now, a handful of states have disproportionate power to determine our national path in presidential elections. But a remedy is available.

Posted on Dec 28, 2007 READ MORE


ron paul

Ron Paul Doesn’t Accept Evolution

The one and only anti-war Republican presidential candidate didn’t raise his hand when asked who doesn’t believe in evolution, but it turns out he may have wanted to. In this clip, Paul responds to a question about the incident by saying that it was an “inappropriate question,” but that “I think it’s a theory—theory of evolution—and I don’t accept it.”

Posted on Dec 22, 2007 READ MORE


Chavez
AP photo / Fernando Llano

Chavez:  ‘There Is No Dictatorship Here’

Hugo Chavez sounded an optimistic note Monday after ending up on the losing end of a vote—by a slim 51 to 49 percent margin—that would have expanded his constitutional powers as Venezuela’s president and instituted changes in federal fund allocation and labor policy, among other proposed developments. 

Posted on Dec 3, 2007 READ MORE


Bush and Musharraf
White House photo by Eric Draper

Bush Says Musharraf ‘Hasn’t Crossed the Line’

Just weeks after publicly fretting about Pervez Musharraf’s dictatorial power grab, George W. Bush has decided that the Pakistani president “hasn’t crossed the line” and “truly is somebody who believes in democracy.” It’s an assessment that would be comical if it didn’t have to do with the freedom of millions of people and the security of dozens of nuclear weapons.

Posted on Nov 21, 2007 READ MORE


pistol
news.bbc.co.uk

Supreme Court to Rule on Gun Rights

The Supreme Court will rule on the Second Amendment for the first time since 1939, when it examines whether a handgun ban in Washington, D.C., is constitutional. A decision is expected next summer, so expect to see a lot of tap dancing from the candidates, particularly those who’ve changed their minds about gun violence or suddenly discovered a love of hunting.

Posted on Nov 20, 2007 READ MORE


Gen. Casey
AP photo / Brennan Linsley

In the Hands of the Military

The last, best hope for averting a war with Iran lies with the United States military. We will be saved or doomed by our generals.

Posted on Nov 12, 2007 READ MORE


Standing Up for Torture, at Home and Abroad

Sheldon Whitehouse, new to the Senate, was searching for what he called a “moment of moral clarity.” Seated alongside the other members of the Senate Judiciary Committee in its crowded hearing room, the Rhode Island Democrat was looking in precisely the wrong place.

Posted on Nov 8, 2007 READ MORE


A Vote for Mukasey Is a Vote for Torture

U.S. attorney general nominee Judge Michael Mukasey admits waterboarding is repugnant, but refuses to say whether it amounts to torture. Democratic Sens. Charles Schumer and Dianne Feinstein voted for his confirmation anyway.

Posted on Nov 6, 2007 READ MORE


Musharraf Foe Calls on Pakistan to ‘Rise Up’

Pakistan’s ousted chief justice has called on the masses to “rise up and restore the constitution,” adding, “This is a time for sacrifices.” Iftikhar Chaudhry, who was fired and placed under house arrest when he refused to sign off on President Pervez Musharraf’s declaration of emergency, made the address by telephone. Mysteriously (or not), mobile phone service in Islamabad suffered a breakdown as Chaudhry was making his remarks.

Posted on Nov 6, 2007 READ MORE


man behind bars
AP photo / Khalid Tanveer

Pakistan Crackdown Intensifies

The government of President Pervez Musharraf has expanded its crackdown on democratic institutions in Pakistan, detaining political rivals as well as journalists and rights advocates. Condoleezza Rice, meanwhile, has hinted that the U.S. will likely continue to send billions of dollars in aid to the increasingly dictatorial regime. Updated

Posted on Nov 4, 2007 READ MORE


Don’t Give Mukasey a Pass

The nominee for attorney general doesn’t know “what is involved” in waterboarding, and he appears to back Bush’s usurpation of power.  Isn’t it time for the Democrats to grow some spine?

Posted on Oct 24, 2007 READ MORE


Clinton Rejects ‘Bush-Cheney Power Grab’

The senator rarely surrenders a juicy quote without a struggle. Yet her familiar preference for caution over candor is gradually changing with each step that she takes toward her party’s presidential nomination.

Posted on Oct 24, 2007 READ MORE


Giuliani
AP photo / Reinhold Matay

Giuliani Does a 180 on Gay Marriage?

Looks like Rudy Giuliani has changed his tune when it comes to gay marriage.  Giuliani reportedly told Family Research Council leader Tony Perkins that he would support a constitutional amendment prohibiting gay marriage—a bit of news, the Huffington Post points out, that might surprise Rudy’s former roommates.

Posted on Oct 22, 2007 READ MORE


Bush and Cheney
AP photo / Charles Dharapak

On the Eve of Destruction

The former intelligence officer and weapons inspector argues that the president’s recent World War III comment offers some rare insight into the highly secretive world of George W. Bush’s White House, where the leader of the free world gets advice from reckless neoconservatives, “war criminal” Dick Cheney and “God.”

Posted on Oct 22, 2007 READ MORE


Sweeping Our Inhumanity Under the Rug

By simply deciding that something is a “state secret,” the Bush government has avoided answering for its brutal treatment of innocent victims in the war on terror.  This is a perversion of the principle of American justice.

Posted on Oct 15, 2007 READ MORE


Bush
AP photo / Evan Vucci

NYT:  Bush Has Shredded Constitution Since 9/11

In a scathing editorial on Sunday, The New York Times accused President Bush of playing on the nation’s post-9/11 fears in order to justify violating our civil liberties and protecting big telecom companies implicated in his wiretapping scheme.  The Bush camp “use[d] the nation’s tragedy to grab ever more power for its vision of an imperial presidency,” the Times editorial board charged.

Posted on Oct 14, 2007 READ MORE


McCain
democrats.georgetown.edu

McCain: ‘Constitution Established a Christian Nation’

John McCain’s campaign is in dire straits, which may be why he told Beliefnet that he would prefer a Christian president who would “carry on in the Judeo-Christian principled tradition,” and that “the Constitution established the United States of America as a Christian nation.”

Posted on Sep 30, 2007 READ MORE


The $64,000 Question

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Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE


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