Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday Open Thread

"Hand over that piece of chicken and no one will get hurt."

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I'm Leavin' on a Jet Plane...

...Don't know when I'll be back again.

Actually, that's not true. I'll be back at the end of next week. It's vacation time!

If you have keys to the casa, feel free to post, or not. Have a great rest of your March, I'm outta here for some long-term slacking.

But before I go, especially for TejasCubbie, key lime cheesecake:

¡Hasta tarde, mis amigos!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Monday Morning Headlines

Yes, I'm aware that it's the afternoon in other parts of the country, but not in the mountain pacific time zone! So here's what's going on as I scan the headlines:
  • The immigration marches are starting to roll in California with a common theme of denouncing the workplace raids: El pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de Los Angeles de Porciúncula y Santa Rosa.
  • Tom Tancredo was stricken with another bout of verbal diarrhea recently. One notable dingleberry: "Bilingual countries don’t work well. Multicultural countries do not work well. When people come to the United States, they need to become Americans."
  • César Chávez would've turned 80 this coming Saturday, Arizona has several big events planned to commemorate and empower the Revolution.
  • Grassroots Activists in Connecticut are fighting back against the growing nativist/vigilante movement in their state.
  • Bipartisan support is growing for the so-called Touchback Provision of the latest immigration bill sponsored by Gutierrez and Flake. Are politicians that stupid to believe that those already living in the shadows will trust the U.S. government to let them back in after they report to their country of origin? (rhetorical, don't answer).
  • From Sunnyslope to Little Saigon to Little Oaxaca - the Valley of the Sun is slowly but surely returning to its mestizo roots.
That's all for now, any other gems of info out there?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Yes, Virginia, it IS Sunday... tour!

I know, I know... who said I could call you Virginia, eh? Well, don't be upset! I call everyone Virginia, from time to time... except actual people who are named Virginia mostly because... well... I don't know any! Do you?

It does not matter what your name is, though, because this isn't called the name tour! And peeking doesn't involve looking at birth certificates (unless, of course, they are in a post) so there! On with our nameless, sort of, tour!

First up, Olivia has gone... well, no, what I mean to say is that Olivia has potted plants! These come in handy in the winter, when one's backyard is just a tad monochrome. But still lovely! Just no match for tulips and daffydills.

Original James has tolling Donkle prose, from which I sense a bit of displeasure! Also, is the bottom falling out of suburbia? And, imagination... and just think if more people had one. (Jazzy James is still on hiatus... I believe he and original James are at that 'separate vacations' state of their relationship.)

Peace is still gone wild, especially at Janet's place! You should start from the top and scroll down, to read about the "peace keepers" *cough* at the Portland protest.... AND, meet some of those who were actually protesting for peace.

[UPDATE!] ILJ thinks the weather is just right for Al Gore... to run for president! Don't know if Gore agrees... also, an excellent and informative look back at the trailblazers in integrating baseball!

Nezua's site is like Lay's potato chips... it's always difficult to pick just one. Or even just three! I mean, once one encounters a Bloggle of Wogglers, what then is a graceful segue to the poetry of Querida Primavera, Ella Regresa? Not to mention the "hey, wait a minute!"s of correcting faulty, deliberately or not, history - even if one does get to watch them cook the history books in real time! Can't be done, without leaving out lots... too much good stuff there, so start at the top can scroll down!


[UPDATE AGAIN!] Whew! Good thoughts held fast for Family Man and family! Sigh of relief! However, the pesky weather keeps getting better(?) and the grass keeps growing and having to be mowed and soon out will come... the weedeater! If it's not still out by the pond, with the snakes, that is.

I think this is my new favorite car. Of course, I could be persuaded that other old cars are my favorites but... this is the one that is here now, so it takes first place! And it's coming along nicely too... soon will be ready to drive off the lot. And sometimes... commercialization is a good thing... how cool would it be to have your corner mailbox be R2-D2!? Lots more there besides... scroll down, scroll down!

Arcturus is highlighting the recent murder of a transgender woman and some of the dangers faced by transpersons daily... a good and informative read. Also, it wouldn't be Arcuturus without some poetry... and I do love this title: "The Insurgents" - "belligerent naked Indy stalks". And the wealthy looting from the poor - makes the world go round. Don't miss that, and other things there!

Over at katiebird's, catdog has an interesting idea... save the cheerleader, save the... oh wait, that was something else. No, no, they wonder if maybe by changing ourselves, we can change the world? Also, are you being firmed and committed daily? If not, hope over to eat4today and get started!

Whoa... deano's site is a bit bun-ny today! And other things, but the picture is too small for me to tell what. This may be a good thing. Also, the mountains, the bottom of the ocean, the desert and possibly the Louvre, all in one rock! Or something. And, sling it like Pollock!

All done! Maybe. If I've forgotten anyone, let me know in comments - some haven't updated, some have moved on and others have said NO PEEKING! gasp.

Maná - Justicia, Tierra y Libertad

From their 2002 Album - Revolución De Amor

Friday, March 23, 2007

[UPDATED] Now Serving - Schadenfreude Sundae

I can't help but smile. There's a lot going on with the vigilantes this week. Their multi-faceted leadership spat is being battled out in the courts, along with some concrete action by law enforcement to ferret out the ways these nativist movements are fertile ground for hate crimes and human rights violations.

San Diego Police served the leader of the San Diego Minutemen, Jeff Schwilk, and another prominent member of the group with search warrants on Wednesday. The warrants were granted in connection with vandalism at a Rancho Penasquitos migrant camp. KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has details.

Last January, six people sliced up migrant workers’ belongings in the camps. Police say the vandals cut up blankets, clothes and even workers' shoes.

It's important to understand the context of this investigation. The Minutemen are actually two separate groups that underwent a schism between founder Jim Gilchrist and prominent leader Chris Simcox. This formed the Minutemen Project and Minutemen Civil Defense Corps.

Now, here's what Simcox has to say about the founder of the Binocular Brigade and the reason for the separation
(A)fter two weeks of the Project, Jim had created a situation where people were running around crazy at the Bible College. It was to be a campus where volunteers stayed while participating. It was one of three sites I had selected. The Bible College soon turned into an armed compound with snipers on the roof and a cult of Gilchrist followers who were violating the SOP (standard operating procedure) at every turn.

It was time to clean it up. I contacted the county sheriff' department and the FBI, and decided to go in and take over management of the Bible College. The entire supervisory team backed me up and we removed Jim from authority, sent a bunch of people packing, and regained control of the Bible College.

Jim was ... just lapping up the media, that's all he cared about. He lost control, and control was taken away from him. We had no choice because the future of the movement was hanging in the balance.

more here
All of this brouhaha was occurring in the wake of an unsuccessful bid for congress by Gilchrist. Simcox had some thoughts on that too:

I packed up my family and lived in OC for 42 days helping him right the ship of the campaign after it imploded. People were fired and quit. The campaign was in shambles, and I was asked to come in and help organize and right the ship.

I still had influence over Jim in that I know how to calm him and keep him focused. When I arrived at the campaign office, I realized he was too far gone and that (Stephen) Eichler and (Deborah Ann) Courtney had also figured out how he worked. They had him in the palm of their hands. They stroked him continuously with, "You are the greatest!" and "You are THE Jim Gilchrest!" They created a sense in him that he was a legend.

more here
So, what's this trial all about? I know you'll be shocked, but it's money.

Coe and two other directors of the Minuteman Project tossed founder Gilchrist out of his official post in a January mutiny and took control of the organization's primary bank account. Gilchrist then sued the trio, saying they lacked the authority to take over.

On Wednesday, a Superior Court judge will consider Gilchrist's argument that the group and its assets should be returned to him. But restoring the movement's momentum is another issue altogether, as bickering over financial accountability has tarnished the effort's public image.

"It's more damaging than anything (opponents) could do," Gilchrist said. "Not just for our organization, but for the movement across the nation. It's not mortally damaging, but it's going to be seriously damaging for a year or so."

more here

Allow me to a light a candle hoping so.

Now what about these search warrants? You may recall back in January, this incident was (marginally) reported. Of course, Indymedia was all over it
More than a half dozen migrant camps in the Rancho Penasquitos area have been vandalized in the past week, leaving many of the camps’ residents without clothing, blankets, or shelter.

In all cases, intruders entered the camps while the migrants were away and used knives or scissors to slash tents, tarps, and bicycle tires, slit open sleeping bags, and cut up blankets, shoes, and clothing. Many of the damaged items were new, some with the tags still attached (see accompanying video).

The camps’ residents who were interviewed asked not to be identified, but one said that even his pencils had been broken in half. He said he “just can’t fathom the hearts and minds of people who would do something like this.”
Eyewitness tips led to the search warrants being executed this week against the SD Minutemen leader Jeff Schwilk and one of their members, Christie Czajkowski.

To provide a cherry for the top of the schadenfreude sundae, those two are also battling it out in the courts.
After hearing testimony from Schwilk and Czajkowski and reviewing documents they submitted, Superior Court Judge Laura Parsky eliminated the temporary restraining order and declined to grant Schwilk a permanent restraining order against Czajkowski. Parsky ruled that Schwilk had failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that Czajkowski had committed unlawful violence, made a credible threat of violence, or engaged in a willful course of conduct that seriously alarmed, annoyed, or harassed Schwilk without a legitimate purpose for her actions.

The Feb. 4 incident that occurred at Schwilk's home also is the basis for a new lawsuit that Czajkowski filed Wednesday against Schwilk.

Czajkowski alleges in the lawsuit that Schwilk "beat, struck, punched, dragged and battered" her, and she is seeking $700,000 in damages.

Schwilk said the lawsuit's allegations are "lies and false statements." Two others involved with the Minutemen were with Schwilk at the courthouse and said they witnessed the Feb. 4 incident ---- Mari Hayden and a man named Daniel who declined to give his last name ---- said Thursday that the actions alleged in the lawsuit did not occur.

Schwilk and Czajkowski also separately addressed Thursday the police investigation of vandalism at a Rancho Penasquitos migrant camps.

Need a spoon?
[UPDATE] Here, have some sprinkles too

A local Minuteman leader whose home was searched by San Diego police Wednesday has now been sued for defamation, along with an associate.


The suit, which includes a Web posting and e-mails allegedly written by the defendants, says that Schwilk and Carney repeatedly referred to Yoon in e-mails and on the Web in vulgar terms.

Neither Schwilk nor Carney could be reached for comment yesterday.

In the lawsuit, one Web posting attributed to them shows a photo of Yoon surrounded by day laborers, with the text insinuating that she is a prostitute: “She really is popular or very inexpensive. (Hey Joe . . . Five Dolla-Five Dolla),” the text reads.

Yoon is Korean-American.


Thursday, March 22, 2007

Jewish-Muslim Peace Walk This Sunday

If you're free, this will be happening in downtown Tucson. It will be a great show of solidarity along with presentations on the history of both religious traditions here in southern Arizona.
Sunday afternoon's fourth annual Jewish-Muslim Peace Walk for the first time will begin at a Downtown locale — the Historic Stone Avenue Temple, 564 S. Stone Ave. — and proceed north for 2 1/2 miles, ending at the Islamic Center of Tucson, 901 E. First St.

At least 200 walkers are expected. Organizers say they'll stick to sidewalks, and no street closures will be required.

Though the walk itself isn't scheduled to begin until 3:30 p.m., festivities start at the Stone Avenue Temple at 1:30, with a talk about Jewish history in Tucson, as well as henna painting, crafts, games, puppets and food.

more information from the Az Daily Star

Fighting Back Against the Human Round-Ups

Activists are speaking out against the Human Hunting Season that is underway across this country. In California, they are also getting something desperately needed - media coverage.

From Mendota, CA:

Asking other cities in the San Joaquin Valley to follow their lead, members of the City Council unanimously endorsed a resolution condemning recent immigration raids that resulted in the arrests of 200 residents.

Federal immigration agents swept through Mendota, which has a population of 8,775, last month. The council's resolution asks immigration officials to stop deportations of undocumented workers because such sweeps "are extremely detrimental to an already economically depressed community."

While their resolution has no jurisdiction over the federal agents conducting the raids, it is a strong signal for the local authorities to send to their residents. We already know that families are being separated and concentration camps are being filled by this government. It sends an unspeakable chill throughout the neighborhoods and communities that suddenly find themselves less populated overnight.

Look at what happened in Texas after the Virgen De Guadalupe Meatpacking Roundups:
The streets of this small, isolated city in the Texas Panhandle are virtually empty nowadays, and "For Rent" signs decorate dilapidated trailers and shabby 1940s-era military barracks that just weeks ago were full of tenants.

Sales of tortillas and other staples are down. Money wire transactions to Central America have mostly dried up. The "Guatemalas," as local residents call them, are almost all gone, and so are a significant number of Mexican nationals.

An estimated 12 to 18 children are now living with only one parent because the other was arrested in a massive immigration raid at the biggest employer in town.

Did everyone in the town get put in prison? Unlikely. Those 'Left Behind' merely moved elsewhere, further into the shadows of society. This inhumane cycle will continue unimpeded until more city councils and local activist groups send a strong message that it must be stopped.

The youth understand this, and are organizing as you read this via MySpace. As of the writing of this post, there are 5018 friends of this particular MySpacer.
On Friday March 30, we close our schools and march to honor California’s César Chávez Holiday. A year ago, we closed our schools and marched to defeat an unjust law, HR4437. This year, we close our schools and march to enforce the spirit and letter of a just law declaring César Chávez birthday a school holiday in California.

When we take to the streets on Friday, March 30th, we will reassert the power of the new civil rights movement we are building and give living expression to the heartfelt pride and dignity of the Latina(o) communities. A year after the struggle to defend immigrant rights gave rise to the biggest and potentially most powerful civil rights movement in more than 100 years, it is up to us to keep the movement alive and to provide the leadership needed to increase the power of our movement.

On Saturday, March 31, and Sunday, April 1, the weekend following our statewide Chávez day actions, the young leaders who have been organizing our mass actions will come together in Los Angeles for a conference. The conference sponsored by BAMN is being organized to develop, consolidate, and build the collective leadership of our new civil rights movement. The movement’s ability to become stronger and bolder relies on our building a more politically conscious and accountable leadership. The conference of the new civil rights movement will give the young leaders of the movement an opportunity to discuss and draw out the lessons we have learned from the struggles we have led so that we can chart a course for our future.
Don't be caught by surprise this year. Find out if any local groups are planning solidarity events next Friday, March 30th. If there is nothing, well maybe it's the time to roll up your sleeves and become an Accidental Activist and create one. I'll be in Portland, OR that day and will see what I can do to join mis herman@s to fight for justice.

The Arizona César Chávez Holiday Coalition is sponsoring several events featuring one of our strongest advocates - Dolores Huerta. There will be a movie screening on Friday evening and the annual Marcha at 9:00am on Saturday, March 31st beginning at Pueblo High School in Tucson. Click here for more information.

Time to step it up a notch.

Crossposted at My Left Wing

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Apple Cheesecake Open Thread

What's up with the crickets around here?
Did I forget to wear deodorant again?

Anywho, hope you're all having a good week so far

Hate Groups and the Anti-Immigrant Brigade

The College Republicans are up to their dirty tricks again.
A Boise State University group has angered Latino leaders and other organizations by promoting a speech with a "food stamp drawing" that requires climbing through a hole in a fence and offering fake identification for a chance to win a dinner at a Mexican restaurant.


The flyer on the College Republicans' Web site is headlined "America's Illegal Alien Invasion" and has a picture of Vasquez as well as examples of a resident alien card, a Texas Health and Human Services Medicaid Card, Idaho driver's license and Social Security card.

It also contains an image of a highway caution sign that has a couple running while dragging a young child.

Above the sign at a slanted angle is "Celebrate Cesar Chavez Week."

The flyer also contains the dinner drawing information: "Win dinner for two at a local Mexican Restaurant! Climb through the hole in the fence and enter your false ID documents into the food stamp drawing!"

Jonathan Sawmiller, president of the College Republicans, defended the flyer as "It's more of an attention-getting device," Sawmiller said. The group's Web site calls the dinner drawing "humorous."

This is not the first time that Anglo-dominated groups have co-opted holidays that are important to minority/marginalized communities. This year during Martin Luther King weekend, several blackface parties were sponsored by college campus groups.

This particular one happened here in Tucson:
An off-campus Martin Luther King Day party that featured guests in blackface and "gangsta" dress continued to receive heavy criticism Thursday, with students at a UA forum decrying racial stereotypes and ignorance that persist on campus.

The two-hour forum drew about 100 people, mostly a black audience, and many said that while they were upset, they weren't surprised that such incidents could still occur in 2007.


The party, similar to others around the country, had students using the King holiday as motivation for a "black" themed party. While hosts and guests have defended their actions by saying it was harmless fun with no intention to be offensive, the negative stereotypes invoked have drawn widespread complaints of racism.

At the forum, many said it's easy for negative racial stereotypes to exist on a predominantly white campus like the University of Arizona, where white students are 64 percent of the student body and black students just less than 3 percent.

Several questioned what effect the forum could have when those in attendance were uniformly critical of the party.

You'll notice the pattern emerging: "Humorous" - "Harmless fun"
The Texas Klan agrees

What about this incident in Santa Clara, California:
Janitors, female gangsters and pregnant women.

These were some of the costumes worn by students, including student-athletes, portraying Latino stereotypes at an off-campus birthday party on Jan. 29.

Photographs from the "south of the border" party were discovered by a member of the Multicultural Center, who then passed them on to Bernice Aguas, director of the MCC. They had been posted on Facebook, a social networking site that is popular among Santa Clara students.

Aguas said she was shocked when she saw the photos.

"I was speechless. I didn't even know what to think, feel or say," she said.

Among the students at the party were at least five members of the women's volleyball team, at least one member of the men's basketball team and at least one member of the men's golf team, according to pictures from the party. The party's host, also an athlete, is half-Mexican.

Basketball coach Dick Davey said he had discussed the party with his players, but he didn't think they should be "condemned."

"Surely, actions were inappropriate," Davey said, "but I don't think my basketball players endorsed that kind of action."
Riiiiiiight. Dog forbid that any star athletes be held accountable for their actions. Wouldn't want to send a winning season down the crapper, right coach? Plus, it's such a shame that pictures were taken. Reminds me of something else that would've been completely forgotten had there not been hard evidence.

But Man Eegee! How dare you suggest that these types of social gatherings are on par with torture! It's not like anyone has been sodomized while bleach was poured on them! I refuse to take you seriously until concentration camps start being filled with nothing but brown folk.

There is a growing group of humanity that finds itself at the bottom of the slippery slope of hate that has risen in this country. The line between the Official Hate Groups™ in the U.S. and the anti-immigrant forces is blurring, and still the situation is met with thumb-twiddling of the highest degree among the media and political classes. In fact, there are some instances where it is directly enabled.

FREEHOLD — A borough councilman's comments that some segments of the Hispanic population are promiscuous and expect society "to subsidize their mistakes" have outraged some civil rights groups, who are calling for him to apologize and resign.

Councilman Marc LeVine posted the comments on a Web site run by a group called PEOPLE, an acronym for Pressing Elected Officials to Preserve our Living Environment. The group was formed by several Freehold residents in September 2003 as tensions mounted over the growing immigrant population and the day laborers' muster zone.

"There is definitely a very promiscuous flavor in — at least — parts of Hispanic culture," LeVine wrote in the Nov. 14, 2006 post. "All of this is highly problematic in a society in which these people often expect to subsidize their mistakes in growing large families that they cannot afford to support on their own.

"It does seem to be true, in my own experience, that a little less of this promiscuous behavior is seen among Mexicans, while much more is found among Dominicans, as one example," LeVine wrote.


Despicable. But not surprising given the rhetorical flow of mierda that makes its way in the direction of the marginalized everyday.

Do me and every other minority a favor today. Speak out against this type of hate-mongering if it happens in your community. Send letters to your local newspapers and elected officials denouncing their actions. You'll probably be met with indignation, but remember that the threat of hate crimes is alive and well. It is now being born from the double-pronged roots of anti-immigrant rhetoric and apathy among the supporters of human rights.

We can remain silent no longer.

Crossposted at Booman Tribune, Daily Kos, and Diatribune

La Importancia de Fe


¿de quien?

¿Nuestro país? ¿Dios? ¿Humanidad?

En este momento necesitamos recordar la alma de nuestras raíces. César Chavez entiendó la importancia de la vida spiritual cuando organizó la gente.

Oracion del Campesino por la Lucha
Escrito por César Chavez

Ensename el sufrimiento de los mas desafortunados;
Asi conocere el dolor de mi pueblo.

Librame a orar por los demas;
Porque estas presente en cada persona.

Ayudame a tomar, responsabilidad de mi propia vida;
Solo asi, sere libre al fin.

Concedeme valentia para servir al projimo;
Porque en la entrega hay vida verdadera.

Consedeme honradez y paciencia;
Para que yo pueda trabajar junto con otros trabajadores.

Alumbranos con el canto y la celebracion;
Para que levanten el Espiritu entre nosotros.

Que el Espiritu florezca y cresca;
Para que no nos cansemos entere la lucha.

Nos acordamos de los que han caido por la justicia;
Porque a nosotros han entregado la vida.

Ayudanos a amar aun a los que nos odian;
Asi podemos cambiar el mundo
En el próximo Domingo, Cardinal Mahoney de Los Angeles celebrare la Misa Santa con la comunidad. Los United Farworkers necesitan ayuda:

This year’s annual Cesar Chavez Mass is scheduled on a Sunday--a day farm workers have off—so they can attend. Farm workers are eager to take part in this historical day joining with thousands of UFW supporters from throughout Southern California.

Please help us raise the funds to charter buses so they can attend this special event. The cost for chartering four buses and providing food and water for the trip is $30 per worker. Please consider sponsoring a farm worker--or a farm worker family--and help make it possible for them to join in this special recognition of UFW Cesar Chavez.

Also, for those in Southern California, please join the farm workers at this special tribute to UFW Founder Cesar Chavez. The Mass will be held at on Sunday at 3:30 pm at the Cathedral of our Lady of the Angels located at: 555 West Temple St. in Los Angeles.

Thank you as always for your generosity and commitment to La Causa.

César Chavez Day is coming up on March 31st. I picked up Sal Si Puedes: Cesar Chavez and the New American Revolution to prepare for it. As a mentor, it's important to me to learn how Cesar allowed his faith to form the foundation of his mission to fight for human rights.

The past couple of weeks have been very instructive for me. The amount of time spent in solitude has multiplied from its usual level of 'majority of the time' to 'most of the time'. It has presented many opportunities to meditate, pray and

The writing that has been produced is not the type that is fit for public consumption, which is why this place has been running stagnant. For that I apologize.

It's always interesting when a period of life is governed by questions instead of answers. There is some form of progress, but it isn't the type of concrete movement that accompanies answers. In fact, it oftentimes feels like backward motion because the questions open up new avenues of the future. But it is progress, and it's helpful to remember that.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Dept. of Justice Documents Now Searchable

The citizen journalists of ePluribus Media have provided a great service to uncover the mess at the Dept. of Justice:
On the ePluribus Media Community, the team has taken the over 2000 pages of PDFs that the Department of Justice (DOJ) dumped late Monday 3-19-07 night and made them searchable.

ePluribus Media decided to make these converted PDFs documents publicly available so that anyone can easily do text searchs on them for relevant information.

Please feel free to make use of these for your researching and let us know if this service is helpful to you. (And, of course, we'd be honored if you'd consider a donation to help us continue the work.)

Here is the link to the story containing all of the starting points.

Monday, March 19, 2007

There is No More Patience

"Crappy Anniversary" to quote clammyc.

And right on cue, George the Terrible issues his annual edict to the lowly servants of his empire: Be Patient™
With Democrats pushing for an end to the Iraq war now entering its fifth year, President Bush pleaded for more patience Monday, saying success is possible but "will take months, not days or weeks."


He said his plan to send 21,500 additional U.S. troops to secure Baghdad and Iraq's troubled Anbar Province "will need more time to take effect," especially since fewer than half of the troop reinforcements have yet arrived in the capital. Bush added: "There will be good days and bad days ahead as the security plan unfolds."
Now, from the archives of this blog:
[Patience] It might be a virtue, but that doesn't mean it's an unlimited resource
Appealing for patience, President Bush said Friday that Americans should not be discouraged by setbacks in Iraq and said the nation must realize that it is still at war.

The president said there is a "tendency of folks is to say this really isn't a war. People kind of want to slip to the comfortable."

Now why do I have a rabid case of deja vu? Perhaps because of this, this, this, and this. It's the same, tired speech that takes no responsibility for mistakes made, it's "more of the same" as Kerry remarked during the debates last year.

With all the patience George has for Iraq, I bet Iran wishes their whole situation was based on a typo instead of oil and natural gas.
It should also be noted that the Patience Meme was trotted out during another dark bleat of incompetence on the record of this government: Hurricane Katrina

"Certainly there are some people out there that are frustrated and in need of assistance," White House press secretary Scott McClellan told reporters aboard Air Force One. "We've got to continue working to get them assistance as quickly as we can."

"There is some level of patience that obviously is going to be required during this time," he said, "but we are urging everyone to move forward as quickly as they can to get people the help they need."

How's that working out?

Are we going to have to wait another year until the political will boils every Congresscritter out of the Sopa de Poder cooking on the stove? Clearly this current batch of ingredients has lost any ability to satiate my appetite for Peas Peace.

In fact, let's fire the chef too.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Oh, the weather outside is delightful... Sunny Sunday Tour!

Mind you, I hear some places are still having winter! Can you imagine? Snow and ice and all those mythical things... well, mythical to some of us, that is! I do think it's easier to empathize, though, when it's down into the 30's and 40s here.. brrr! But when it's almost 90, like it was yesterday? In March?? Sorry, no can do!

I can still visit though! And be nosy! So, let's go!

Meta, meta bo betta, fee fie... okay, well you know the rest, but I'm just letting you know that there is mo meta at mo betta! Ms Xeno is not buying it! And she wants you to not buy it too! Or something like that. You'll have to read it and see what you should be not buying! Also, an interesting discussion, from catnip, going on about the future of blogging... which is something of interest to many people! I bet you have some ideas, so don't be shy! Acturus alerts us a gathering of progressives this summer, who are working for real change in this country and others! And no, the gathering doesn't rhyme with "merely gloss"!

Olivia, Olivia... what can you do with her? Not content with photographing the inner bits of various beauties, she's not gone on to expose the seat of government! Also, look who's peeking now!

By the way... just a reminder that everybody still comes from somewhere! And you can too, just stop on by!

[UPDATE!] [update! too] spotted in the comments... a no caps kangaroo! which gives us not only a good excuse to ignore the caps key in this particular post, but we also can speak in the... the... royal person and not sound weird! since we've not visited for a while, just start at the top and scroll down!

Hmmm.... I think katiebird is getting into numerology! Don't ask me why, you'll have to go see for yourself. Also, catdog is saying that 42 is NOT the answer! Dancing is. (I think they might be a Suspicious Personage). We'll keep an eye on them! (Also, have you noticed the preponderance of fur and feathers there?)

Well! I was over at Nezua's, trying to get a synopsis of this article, when I decided I had to read the whole thing! And so I did, and so should you! Some of that "sit down at the typewriter and open a vein" type of writing. Also, don't miss his Colonizers of the World award for 2006! And, more shame to this nation (the US), but there are things that we can do to help care for the children left behind.

[UPDATE AGAIN!] I think I like this picture! Over at deano's, that is... an Atlantic Twilight! You can tell it's the Atlantic cuz the water is a nice blue, instead of a muddy green. Also, when was the last time you critiqued a political cartoon? Now's your chance! And ohh, la la?

You know one thing I've noticed... catnip has totally stopped thinking on Sunday! But she still does lots of other stuff, like reveals Tory spies and banishes bloggers and peeks in on Tory training camps, so we forgive her for being without thought!

Our car is getting cooler by the day! Boran is adding details and changing the tires and soon... soon... it'll be ready! And also, we get to wave buh-bye to someone, cuz the Tribal Council did the right thing and voted them off the island! And it looks like a win for the good guys, for once!

ILJ has tons of interviews this past week! Okay, so he didn't do them all, but he's highlighting them - and such a variety too... from Senator Jim Webb, to an advocate for the homeless, Rev. Chuck Currie, and then his own interview with peace and justice advocate Marisa Handler! Go listen and read!

[UPDATE THE LAST!] Well, I seem to have somehow offended that great deity, Halo Scan, and it has zapped my post with lightning and removed the comments! ONLY from the tour post!

*ponders whether to light a petitioning fire... or just to set haloscan on fire instead*

Still, we have a few more people to visit, so here we come!

Arcturus has words from that former politician that progressives *cough* love to hate... Cynthia McKinney! Standing up to power is a good thing, as long as you don't do it tooo openly or often, you see.

We must send Family Man and Family Mom pillows, bubble wrap and good thoughts! Take care of yourselves and best of luck and good health to the rest of the family, too!

Original James has bunches of good stuff! You'll need to start at the top and scroll down and read it all! Some of it is short, some long (he has a piece here at Manny's too, scroll down, scroll down!). I think Jazzy James is sort of hiatusing again, though!

All done! I think... if I've missed you um... well... if the great Halo Scan gives comments back, tell me there!
[COMMENT UPDATE!] They are back! And, no matter what anyone says, it was Not My Fault that they disappeared in the first place! Really!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Fragments of writing from March 2003

As we're coming up on the fourth anniversary of the start of the Iraq War - largely an escalation of what had already begun under Poppy Bush and Bill Clinton - I'm taking a trip down memory lane. In March 2003 I did not as of yet have a blog, but did post to message boards and usenet groups of one sort or another. I didn't really go out of my way to archive much of what I might have written at the time, as it was largely in the form of off-the-cuff remarks. That said, here are a few fragments that capture where I was at in late March of that year. I'll try to provide some context for these fragmentary comments wherever possible.

March 18, 2003

Note - In response to a conversation regarding the alleged accuracy of the so-called smart bombs to be used in the opening bombing raids:
Well, one way to interpret the "shock and awe" strategy is that the massive bombings will end up creating massive collateral damage. The "smart bombs" aren't that smart.
Note - I expected that the Iraq War would escalate conflict, especially in the Middle East and Central Asia:
If I were the leader of one of the so-called "axis of evil" nations, I'd be pushing to get armed to the teeth with whatever weaponry possible, including biological, chemical, and even nuclear weapons, if for no other reason than because of the realization that the U.S. won't stop with Iraq & that if one's country is on the list of nations to be invaded, at least those invasions would be more costly to the U.S.
March 20, 2003

Note - Regarding a conversation on the continuing world-wide protests as the war started:
Many of us did not ask for this waste of a war. We have a voice too. Bring on the noise. Word.
March 21, 2003

Note - The last part of the following sentence captures my thoughts about the actual motivation for the US invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq:
Makes me wonder if Bush et al ever bothered to listen to Iraqi citizens, or if (as I suspect is way more likely) they simply made the decision to impose their vision of manifest destiny in which Iraqis are viewed strictly as sharecroppers on those Oil plantations.
Note - A bit of sarcasm aimed at some of the happy talk that permeated the opening days of the war:
The U$ has made the world safe for SUV owners everywhere. The companies will be pleased.
March 23, 2003

Note - In response to the well-worn canard that the US was "fighting terrorists in Iraq to make Americans safer at home" I wanted to point out our own home-grown right-wing Christian fundamentalist terrorists:
I'd be willing to wager all 5 cents of my life savings that the vast majority of the people being "shocked and awed" are underpaid working stiffs like me, who simply could not afford to leave.

Sometimes I find it a good idea to look close to home. How many terrorists are our major cities harboring? (i.e., people who bomb family planning clinics & target staff of these clinics for assassination; people who burn crosses in front of the homes of African-Americans, who set fire to mosques & churches, and so forth).
March 26, 2003

Note - Another response illustrating my skepticism about the US government's motives for embarking on the war:
I suppose the best way to put this is that I don't buy the premise that the war has anything to do with the human rights situation in Iraq. The Reagan/Bush crowd in the 1980s didn't give a damn back then, and the current Bush crowd doesn't give a damn now. If it suited the purposes of our government, they'd gladly place another brutal dictator in power there and politely ignore the plight of Iraqi civilians (provided of course that the dictator in question cooperates with our government).
I thought that the war was an awful idea from the get-go, having at various points prior expressed skepticism about the initial rationale for the war (i.e., the alleged WMDs that turned out to be non-existent) as well as all the b.s. about democratizing Iraq, ad nauseum. I was convinced that the people who would be hurt the most were going to be low-income Iraq civilian families, and that 21st century equivalents of Guernica and Dresden were likely to transpire before all was said and done. Indeed, if anything, the events that have transpired in the four years since the war started have been in a number of respects worse than I could have imagined.

There is no comfort to be found in being correct; only a really bad feeling at the pit of one's stomach that the various efforts to raise awareness of the lies leading up to the war as well as the likely consequences of going to war simply failed to prevent the massive loss of lives since it all began on March 20, 2003. That day will indeed live in infamy. The potential control that a handful of Big Oil conglomerates will gain over Iraqi oil fields will not justify the war crimes that have been committed in the process.

Crossposted from my humble blog, and to more blogs than you can shake a stick at.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A Logo is Worth 1000 Words

Either the AP caption writer is a SnarkMaster, or this is unintentionally hilarious

Democratic Presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., gestures during a speech before the National League of Cities meeting in Washington, Tuesday, March 13, 2007.

Gotta luv that One-Fingered Salute by the host agency's logo. Ha

Support for Irish Undocumented Immigrants

Courtesy of the newest addition to the blogroll: Irish Voices
This Donegal window reminds neighbors of undocumented Irish family and friends in America who needs their support.

Donegal residents are celebrating St. Patrick's Day this year by planning several buses to Dublin to attend the April 14th Rally for the Family and Friends of the undocumented Irish in America.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Action Alert: Cesar Chavez Day, Marketplace Research, FOX Attacks

Here are three opportunities to become an Accidental Activist.

The first is from our friends at United Farm Workers

Help Win a National Holiday for Cesar E. Chavez!

Join the grassroots movement to make Cesar's March 31st birthday a national holiday.

Thank you for signing the petition for a National Cesar Chavez Holiday. Thousands of people have signed our online petition.

Please help us take this campaign to the next level.

  • Tell-A-Friend: Please help make the Cesar E. Chavez national holiday a reality. Forward this message to at least 10 friends or family and ask them to sign the petition today.

  • Download the Petition and Get Signatures: Many of you will be attending events celebrating the life of Cesar Chavez. Please help us spread the word by download the petition and circulating it at Chavez day events, work, school, your house of worship and any other location you can think of.
    Please return signed petitions to: UFW, C/O Chavez Holiday Petition,2550 N Hollywood Way, Su. 400, Burbank, CA, 91505
The second is another outreach effort by American Public Media's radio show Marketplace.
What was the impact of President Bush's Americas trip?

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on how Marketplace can cover Latino issues in greater depth. We could use your help again as we try to understand the impact of President Bush’s six-day trip to Latin America.

The president focused on trade agreements and immigration issues, though protesters and a rival Latin American tour by Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez stole some of the spotlight.

Was this all political theater? Or do you expect Bush’s trip to affect your life or the lives of other Latinos in the U.S.? What do you expect to happen as a result of the trip? Share your insights with us.

The trip highlighted some tensions between the U.S. and its neighbors to the south. Bush and Chavez's dueling tours underscored their ongoing tug-of-war for influence in the region.

And in Mexico today, president Felipe Calderon pressed Bush for U.S. action on comprehensive immigration reform focused on creating jobs, not a fence. (Here’s the text of Bush and Calderon’s arrival ceremony speeches.)

What do you make of the Bush visit, and what it means for relations between the U.S. and Latin America?
This is the second time the staff of American Public Media has reached out to the Latino Blogosphere. Many thanks to them for engaging with our communities.

Last, but not least, there is an online campaign underway that is highlighting the ways Faux News is targeting the black community. Based out of the website: FOX ATTACKS, they are wondering if there is similar interest for their intrepid muckrakers to study the ways that MSM Propaganda Organ is directly targeting Latinos (and they are).

Drop them a note expressing your support. Here is one of the videos already put together, in conjunction with

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Toy Soldiers for the Infantile (P)resident

This made me chuckle
Gerardo Fernandez, a spokesman for Mexico's leftist Democratic Revolution Party, arrived in Merida on Monday with a bag of toy soldiers he wanted to leave at Bush's hotel so he could "play war and leave the world alone." When he couldn't get through security, he climbed a rusty metal barrier and threw the plastic troops into the secured area.
What are some other ingenious ways to protest Shrub? Aside from calling in Mayan priests to re-sanctify the tierra desecrated by his very presence.

Here's an idea: let's pelt him with lettuce since he is so fond of picking it alongside lowly subjects of his corporatocracy.

They toured an American military center that provides basic medical care and physician training. He and Laura Bush handed out hygiene kits at an elementary school. And the president helped to load lettuce headed for the global market onto a truck at a farmers' cooperative.

That, he said later, was ''one of the great experiences of my presidency.''

Any other suggestions?

Senator Kennedy Raises Human Rights Issue

Thank you to the Senator for raising the real-life consequences that are adversely affecting families and communities.

From an Op-Ed last Friday in the Boston Herald:
All over New Bedford on Tuesday, hundreds of women and men woke up, kissed their children goodbye, and left for another day of work at Michael Bianco Inc. They knew it would be a grueling day because there was no other kind of day in the sweatshop-like conditions of the factory. But they were willing to work hard and without complaint because they believed in the American Dream, in which hard work creates a hope for a better life -- if not for them, then for their children.

What happened next was a tragic example of the desperate state of our current immigration policy. Hundreds of armed police and immigration officers raided the factory, creating panic among the workers. They handcuffed unarmed men and women in the same factory where the workers had already known nothing but indignity at the hands of their employer.

Today, Senator Kennedy's staff is expanding the reach of his message to blogtopia (y!sctp!).

From the blog, Blue Mass. Group:

Gridlock in the last Congress stalled bipartisan efforts to solve the nations immigration crisis. But we will try again soon. The challenge is to combine increased enforcement and tougher penalties on employers who hire the undocumented with a way for the millions of undocumented workers already here to earn citizenship by working hard and paying taxes.

The fact is, immigration is about more than numbers. The story of Lilo Mancia, whose wife remains in custody, after the New Bedford raid, is common but something we are rarely able to see.

Without her, I am dead," said Lilo, breaking into tears. His boys are suffering, too. "They ask for her," he said. Jeffery, who has an ear infection, cried in his father"s arms. His brother kept running around the church basement with his new friend, a green Incredible Hulk doll.

We must find a better solution to our immigration crisis than raids that rip families apart.


Más información:

Monday, March 12, 2007

They needed a helicopter?

I'm surprised they didn't gas him too.
Across town at Coronado Crossing, Manuel, an electrician from Douglas who declined to give his last name, was installing wiring at a new home when three Border Patrol agents, three ICE officers and a man in civilian clothing pulled up in unmarked vehicles.

The officers were armed and accompanied by dogs, Manuel said, and one Border Patrol agent wore a mask. A helicopter circled overhead.

Manuel and a companion were asked to show ID, and when they checked out, the officers left.

linkage (all emphasis mine. hat tip to AZ Congress Watch)
In case you haven't noticed, the Human Hunting Season has opened for business. The latest gestapo Border Patrol raid happened in Cochise County, here in southern Arizona.

Thankfully, though, the Democrats took control of that Congressional seat last November so we can count on the full support of CD08's Representative to denounce these tactics that divide families.
In Washington, U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords applauded the raids in Sierra Vista while reiterating her call for comprehensive immigration reform.
Randy? Is that you?

Sunday, March 11, 2007

It's Two, Two... Two Sundays in One! (maybe)

Having decided that set days of the week are just an imperialistic construct (you remember when we decided that, no?), I see no reason why we can't just move last Sunday to this Sunday and have a biiiiiigggg tour!

Okay, well, maybe not. We'll see how long that lasts, or rather... how long I last! Even I am not an indefatigable peeker!

I've just gotta tell you... it's Tough Times in Family Land! Poor Family Man and Family Mom spent last week decrepiting. What? What do you mean that's not a word!? It is here, cuz I have been decrepiting too, at an alarming rate! Get well soon FMom and FMan! I hope this week is better! There is good news though... for one thing, Cat somehow still lives. Outside... Also, don't miss Family Mom's reminiscing!

ILJ notes the difference between principled partisanship and hyperpartisanship... and who better to make that point with that our hyperpartisan, hyperpolitical Attorney General? Also, a perspective on the Scooter Libby thing... he's collateral damage. ILJ also has two related pieces on the US prison system... which could use a lot more scrutiny. First, he wonders if anyone cares about the prison industrial complex, and then... we are still institutionalizing the mentally ill... only this time, in prisons.

A free press? There are doubts! Arcturus details some of them, with examples, in a discussion of the info wars and freeing the press. And the dangers of short term pragmatism... especially when it comes to stores of nuclear materials. I didn't even know the Congo had a nuclear agency... but it seems the US helped build it many years ago, and now there are repercussions. Also, Arundhati Roy is writing a new book! Lots more there besides, including Ecuador wanting the US out NOW! (what are we doing there in the first place?)... start at the top and scroll down! [little update!] Arcturus points out also this - music from the Afghan/Pakistani border region!

[UPDATE!] Olivia has peaches! I bet she's not sharing either... and really, can you blame her? Would you share this beauty? (even if it does eat icky things - where is it that one shops for those delicacies known as, um... bloodworms?).
This is pretty peachie too! Or strawberry shortcakey, if you prefer. And I ask you... where else but Olivia's would you find photos of a bug trying on new shoes? Don't miss the cloud blogging!

Boran is tricking us! Not only are our condos not ready for occupancy... but all development work has stopped on them! For now! All is not lost tho... instead, we have another super cool car! I like the old cars best... they had personality! Also, shocked? I think not, Captain Renault!

Well! One thing we know about Original James. He has some radical view points but he's not completely nuts! Only 56% nuts, apparently... that's better than Planter's! Also he has updates for the Bloggers Against Torture blogroll... scoot on over there and see what's up. His friend Bill Chambers sounds like he would have been an interesting guy to know. And ahh... pictures and their thousand words... especially in political campaigns! We missed the return of Jazzy James, so you may not know about the new offering... Okyerema Asante: Drum Message. Sounds like a treat!

[UPDATE AGAIN!] I give up before I've even begun! Uncle! Mea cul... oh wait, I didn't do anything wrong. I mean um... well, there is just no way I can condense some folk's 2 weeks worth of stuff, even a tiny bit - we love prolific writers, except at tour time! Well we love them still, even then, but what I mean is... no no, um I mean ... okay, maybe now is the time for that mea culpa!

Aha! It looks like any number of chickens are finally finding their way home to roost... catnip tells of the Canadian Defense Ministers efforts at damage control, in the human rights and detainees issue. And no surprise at this finger in the political corruption pie... clean hands are foreign to Rove. And don't miss this post about the rights of women in Canada. So many places are falling down on that, sigh.

Far from toppling over, katiebird has been Up To Things! Well, being firmed daily, of course... but also, she's dissecting Sen. Wyden's health care plan... does it go far enough? And talking about the importance of underwear! Oh wait... who's that!? (No no, it's not poor Britney, shame on you!). It's the ambiguously named catdog, who is now a contributor there! Welcome catdog... hopefully katie has explained to you that weekly we... well... peek! Publicly!

Duke is tired of the euphemisms and thinks it's time to call it what it is... mass deportations. I agree! He also discusses a recent study that may hold some surprising results for some... on the effects of immigrant workers on wages and self employment! And a round-up of immigration news - some of it is from a week or so ago, but there are stories there I missed!

[UPDATE SOME MORE!] There is, perhaps not surprisingly, meta at mo betta! scribe talks about rules and leaders and communities! And catnip ponders that recent NY Times "to do" list, for the Bush admin. Then she takes on big box blogs and the disaffiliated! And, of course, conversation everywhere in open and targeted threads.

Nezua talks about language and accents and growing up, and also how Bush wins over Latin American. Do I sense a little tongue in cheek there? And a beautiful tribute to the women of his family and to others everywhere, for the International Women's Day in El Respeto y El Amor por Las Mujeres. There is lots more there besides, including a cool post that tells you how to play with all the different styles and customize your reading.

I bet you don't know what we almost missed at deano's... The potato hunter! Ah, art. Speaking of... string, birds and houses... what else could it be but "Tracing the Impact"? Also, neat photos of Amsterdam and Kenney Mencher's "Trip"!

XicanoPwr details the private prisons for immigrants, and how they were sold under the "national security" blanket. Also he is issuing a call to action, on some of the issues confronting all of us today.

dove has an open, but not empty! thread and I have a question in the comments there. Also, I have actually written something, even if it's just to let everyone know that I don't like any of them. Political choices, that is.

All done! I think. Don't forget to scroll down, scroll down! And read Manny's pieces... on international women's day and the children left behind to fend for themselves, once again, after a govt raid and more besides!

Friday, March 09, 2007

¿Donde está la Afterparty?

Ozomatli's new CD comes out on April 3rd. This is one of the new tracks - Afterparty

Friday Bud Blogging

He's begging for you to delurk thyself

Border Action Network Fundraiser for D.C. Trip

The Border Action Network is organizing an unprecedented trip of immigrants and advocates to Washington, D.C. to meet with powerbrokers; but they need the community's assistance.

To get a better idea of the work they do than the Tucson Citizen provides below, please visit their website or read the entry I wrote last year after attending one of their important community meetings.

Here's the lowdown for their latest human rights campaign:

As US Congress gears up to initiate the discussion on immigration reform, the Border Community Alliance for Human Rights (representing border and interior communities), the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) and the National Alliance of Latin American and Caribbean Communities (NALACC) are joining their efforts to bring more that five hundred representatives from their respective communities across the nation to carry out national educational and legislative days (March 13-15) for fair and comprehensive immigration reform and humane border security policies.

On March 13th a Congressional Briefing on Comprehensive Immigration Reform will be hold at Capitol Hill. At this briefing representatives of the convening networks will present their reports, testimonies and proposal to congressional staffers.


Groups like the Border Action Network are truly grassroots movements. They have little money but do honorable and vitally important work. Please consider donating to their worthy cause to help make this upcoming trip successful, as well as providing seed money for future campaigns. Here is the link to their secure online donation page.

Paz (¡y Justicia!)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Día Internacional de la Mujer

Today is the International Women's Day, commemorated in dozens of countries around this globe. Commemoration is more appropriate than celebration, in my opinion, because there is still too much ground to cover in the area of gender equality.

It has always been ironic to me as a Xicano, growing up in a machismo atmosphere, how much deference is paid to the father-based lineage of our families. We track our histories through that line, usually in the form of naming children or when telling our stories - using that as our foundation. Yet, it is todas las mujeres that hold our families together (usually).

This past weekend I got to spend a day with my nana and she was feeling pretty nostalgic, so I was treated to many stories of her life and childhood. Moments that I treasure, because in a way, they are a part of my story.

She spoke of the hardship endured raising five children and taking care of an ailing mother-in-law while my tata was away doing construction work to keep food on the table. Now in her late seventies, she spends the majority of her time managing a food bank that provides the same assistance she received all those years ago when the purse was pinched.

The force within las mujeres is one that can't be described - it is felt. There is love, discipline and orgullo - pride - that beams out of them when they are able to share those special moments of realization that the hard work they did paid off in some way.

It could be something as simple as watching a child get a note of Excellence on a paper. I guarantee you that that paper will be prominently displayed on the refrigerator, and whenever there are guests in the house, they will be treated to the lyrical masterpiece.

Today is a day where, yes, we can pay homage to the hardworking and influential women in our lives - but we must also remember that it is yet another call to action to bring equality to the way we structure our social systems.

In addition to that, it is a call to raise awareness on the ways that women are often abused instead of revered. From the United Nations:

Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls

"Violence against women has yet to receive the priority attention and resources needed at all levels to tackle it with the seriousness and visibility necessary."

Secretary-General’s in-depth study on violence against women (2006)(A/61/122/Add.1)

While manifestations of violence against women and girls vary across social, economic, cultural and historical contexts, it is clear that violence against women and girls remains a devastating reality in all parts of the world. Existing research, data and testimonials from women and girls world-wide provide chilling evidence. It is a pervasive violation of human rights and a major impediment to achieving gender equality, development and peace.

Such violence is unacceptable, whether perpetrated by the State and its agents or by family members or strangers, in the public or private sphere, in peacetime or in times of conflict.

In honor of todays holiday - and especially for the power of dignity and equality that can be borne to this world if only we choose to bring it about in our circles of influence - please take the time to discover the many ways you can help. Most of the time, the transformation begins within our own homes.

Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

No Child Left Behind? Try 100

Keep it up, Department of Homeland Security. You are proving your worth as robotic minions to an inhumane government.
Dozens of young children were stranded at schools and with baby-sitters after their parents were rounded up by federal authorities who raided a leather goods maker suspected of hiring illegal immigrants, authorities said Wednesday.

About two-thirds of the 500 employees of Michael Bianco Inc., mostly women, were detained Tuesday by immigration officials for possible deportation as illegal aliens.

As a result, about 100 children were stuck with baby sitters, caretakers and others, said Corinn Williams, director of the Community Economic Development Center of Southeastern Massachusetts.

"We're continuing to get stories today about infants that were left behind," she said. "It's been a widespread humanitarian crisis here in New Bedford."

And to the worthless sacks of mostly-water on Capitol Hill: a big hearty 'Fuck You' for standing by and doing nothing.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Merry Fitzmas!


Let the dam break and the waters of accountability wash away the putrid sewage that has soiled this world under BushCo rule.
Former White House aide I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was convicted Tuesday of obstruction, perjury and lying to the FBI in an investigation into the leak of a CIA operative’s identity.

Libby, the former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, was accused of lying and obstructing the investigation into the 2003 leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity to reporters.

He was acquitted of one count of lying to the FBI.


Monday, March 05, 2007

Four Generations Of One Family Killed

Fear Not.

Freedom™ is still on the march in Afghanistan
A coalition airstrike destroyed a mud-brick home after a rocket attack on a U.S. base, killing nine people from four generations of an Afghan family including a 6-month-old, officials and relatives said Monday — one of the latest in a string of civilian deaths that threaten to undermine the government.

It was the third report in two days of U.S. forces killing civilians. The airstrike took place late Sunday in Kapisa province north of the capital, some 12 hours after U.S. Marines opened fire on civilian cars and pedestrians following a suicide bombing in eastern Nangahar province.

In the other incident, an American convoy in the southern city of Kandahar — where suicide attacks have become commonplace over the past year — opened fire Monday on a vehicle that drove too close, killing the driver, said Noor Ahmad, a Kandahar police officer who said he witnessed the shooting. A NATO spokesman said he did not have any information.

Up to 10 Afghans died in the aftermath of the Nangahar suicide attack, which wounded a U.S. Marine. President Hamid Karzai condemned the bombing, "which caused the American forces to fire on civilians," and a statement said relatives of the dead wanted the "perpetrators" brought to justice.

linkage (emphasis mine)
Ahhhhh, war.

No wonder I loathe thee.

Sorry, sorry! (no Sunday Tour Edition)

Sorry, everyone! I've been rather flu-ish the past few days, and yesterday decided to lay down and rest my eyes "just for a minute".


Anyway, I'll try and put something together over the next couple of days (after all, we can't let all those cookies and milk and tea that have been set out in preparation for visitors go to waste! I hear catnip even has cheesecake!).

If you have something you particularly want to highlight, just leave it here and comments and I'll make sure it gets included.

I don't know who decided Sunday had to be on Sunday anyway... if we can move the time around, surely we can move the days as well? Sunday Savings Time!

Friday, March 02, 2007

Friday Bud Blogging

Colorado Hitching a Ride on the Hate Train Too

Thanks to Arcturus for the initial heads up on this. Duke over at Migra Matters and Digby over at Hullabaloo also weigh in. And now, here's the United Farmworkers call to action:
Slavery is illegal in the United States...or that’s what we believe. However, it looks like modern day slavery has just been OK’d in the great state of Colorado.

Yesterday's Los Angeles Times features an article called "Colorado to use inmates to fill migrant shortage". It seems that Colorado's farmers have been having a labor shortage ever since passing what its Legislature promoted as the nation's toughest laws against illegal immigration last summer.

Their solution: Use convicts as farm workers.


E-mail Colorado's Governor today and tell him that allowing growers to hire prisoners to work in the agriculture is nothing more than legalized slavery. Tell him the solution to the nation's immigration crisis is not prison labor.
I knew we were living in the 00 decade, just wasn't aware it meant the 1800s.


...where the wingnuts spread across the plain.

And the laws they pass will smell like ass;
While the brown folk are targeted for pain."

Alright, I'll spare you the rest of my pre-caffeinated lyrical desecration. Not that there isn't good reason for it:
An Oklahoma State House of Representatives committee approved a strict immigration bill on Wednesday for a full vote in the Oklahoma House. The Oklahoma Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act of 2007 [HB 1804 text, DOC] seeks to prevent illegal immigrants from obtaining state identification, and would require all state and local agencies to verify citizenship status of applicants before authorizing benefits. The bill would also require public employers to enter job applicants into an electronic immigration database to verify legal status, and would repeal a 2003 law that permits illegal immigrants to attend state colleges at in-state tuition levels.
It looks like my former state of residence is going the way of Georgia. Let's review the consequences.
  • less people will have any form of identification.
  • racial profiling will run rampant anytime a "suspected" undocumented immigrant seeks any type of assistance from the state or local government.
  • more databases of identification information will be collected by the government, and we all know how secure that information remains.
  • less educational opportunities will be offered to people already residing in the state.
Of course, these bullets (pun intended), hold true no matter where sweeping legislation like this is enacted. They are usually accompanied with some type of dog whistle bill that signals to all the white folk that the American™ culture is under assault. The Okies in the State Legislature, like good little TancredoBots, are following the plan to a T:
The Oklahoma legislature is also now considering the Oklahoma English Language Act [HB 1423 text, DOC], which would require all official business of the state to be conducted in English, with exceptions. AP has more.
Oh, the irony. I wonder if they'll get rid of the peace pipe and non-assimilated feathers on the state flag too?

Brand new state!
Brand new state, gonna treat you great!


Crossposted at Booman Tribune