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One-Two Punch to Balance of Power this Week: Patriot Act and Perpetual War

While we were watching the train wreck of Patriot Act passage last week, the House of Representatives quietly passed a bill that grants the President of the United States the right to engage in perpetual war. Together, these bills concentrate power in the hands of the man who is already the single-most powerful person on […]

Obama: US can put Citizens on Government Hit List with No Recourse

In this country, the judicial branch of government has a vital role to play in reviewing the actions of the other two. With the Congress retreating from its investigative and oversight role, courts are often the only means left of checking the urges of an encroaching executive. Increasingly, courts are absent too.

Earlier this month, […]

James Langevin and Military General Talk Up Big Government Cyber Powers

Only one newspaper — the conservative Washington Times — has picked up on the cryptic but crucial conversation yesterday between Rep. James Langevin and General Keith Alexander in a sparsely attended hearing of the House Armed Services Committee yesterday. Langevin (chair of a congressional subcommittee on cybersecurity) asked General Alexander (head of the military’s National […]

Another Big Shot Anti-Gay Pastor Caught Up in Abusive Gay Sex Scandal

Oh my. Dear me.

Yet another high-profile, pushy Christian fundamentalist preacher against equal rights for gay and lesbian people has been accused of abusing his position of authority to obtain gay sex.

Mercy. Gracious. I am so shocked. Who could have expected such a thing? Not me. That is for sure. What a surprise.

New 2009 Census Data: Income Down for the Poor, Down for the Middle Class, Up for the Rich in the USA

(All dollar figures below in 2009 dollars, adjusted for inflation)

New figures on Americans’ household income in 2009 released by the U.S. Census Bureau today divide the U.S. population into quintiles, fifths of the population ordered by their income. Data show that the four lowest quintiles in the U.S. population — those earning $100,000 or […]

Income and Inequality in the United States: A Review through 2008

A first glimpse at income trends in the United States doesn’t reveal anything a person would complain about:

From 1967 to 2007, median household income in this country rose 25%, and that’s in real, inflation-adjusted dollars. It seems like a great trend, and from this graph alone one might be tempted to clap, cheer […]

Unity12 Changes its Name and its Goals, Dropping BiPartisanship

In an official filing with the IRS this Monday afternoon, the Unity12 Task Force officially changed its name to Americans Elect.

That’s not all that changed with the filing of status. The leadership and location of Unity12 as Americans Elect are unchanged, but the former Unity12 team did change the declaration of its organizational […]

Power of Political Prayer Fizzles in Gulf States

Yesterday, the Republican governors of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas orchestrated an official Day of Prayer to stop the onslaught of the offshore oil spill from the site of the wrecked BP Deepwater Horizon. Five official declarations called for coordinated intercessory prayer to stop the still-spilling oil gusher at the bottom of the Gulf […]

Al Franken, Will You Stand With the Patriot Act or With Civil Liberty?

When the public was watching, Senator Al Franken read the 4th Amendment aloud to Obama officials, in high rhetorical dudgeon against the Patriot Act. Everybody clapped.

When the public wasn’t watching, Senator Al Franken twice acted to support the Patriot Act and to keep warrantless surveillance, search and seizure of Americans’ communications and property — […]

If You're Upset About Obama Intruding, How About Section 215?

Last week, a number of conservative Americans declared themselves to be highly upset that the President, of all people, would be delivering a speech to America’s schoolchildren, at least in places where schools decided to show the speech. “Orwellian!” “Tyranny!” they cried.

I had problems of my own with some of the plans that were […]

If You’re Upset About Obama Intruding, How About Section 215?

Last week, a number of conservative Americans declared themselves to be highly upset that the President, of all people, would be delivering a speech to America’s schoolchildren, at least in places where schools decided to show the speech. “Orwellian!” “Tyranny!” they cried.

I had problems of my own with some of the plans that were […]