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[RRND] 03/01 -- Judge rules Padilla competent for trial; McCain announces plan to announce announcement

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  • Terry L Parker
    ************************************************** * RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST * * Volume V, Issue #1,099 * Thursday, March 1st, 2007 * Email Circulation
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 1, 2007
      **************************************************
      * RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST
      *
      * Volume V, Issue #1,099
      * Thursday, March 1st, 2007
      * Email Circulation 2,032
      *
      * Published every non-holiday weekday
      * by the staff of Rational Review
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      * On the Web: http://www.rationalreview.com/news
      * In cooperation with ISIL: http://www.isil.org
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      In The News:

      1) Judge rules Padilla competent for trial
      2) McCain announces plan to announce announcement
      3) Iraq: One US Marine, one Iraqi killed
      4) OH: Sex offender law tested
      5) Arthur M. Schlesinger, 1917-2007
      6) Whale pirate aims at Japanese fleet
      7) Gangs seize other gang's stronghold in Haiti
      8) Democratic leaders revamp anti-war plan
      9) US to Italy: We're above petty things like laws
      10) US blasted for treatment of detainees
      11) Prescription abuse to pass illicit drugs
      12) Airman gets 50 years in rape case
      13) British arrest another suspect in airline bomb plot
      14) Drug thugs kidnap dozens, steal millions
      15) Must parents of special needs child hire lawyer?
      16) UK: 100 year old man fights off muggers
      17) CO: Begging banned on corners
      18) CA: Suit filed in swearing case
      19) Germany: Bird gets man into trouble
      20) UK: Thousands of schools back admission lotteries
      21) TX: 60-year-old woman fights off gunman
      22) TN: Man shoots at home invaders
      23) Soldiers at Walter Reed told to keep quiet
      24) Medieval Muslims made stunning math breakthrough
      25) CA: Roman Catholic diocese files for bankruptcy
      26) Court: Raid of SF pirate station legal
      27) CA: Wagner baseball card fetches $2.35 million
      28) PA: Principal charged with meth dealing
      29) Ahmadinejad faces domestic criticism on Iran's nuke program
      30) Pardons reemerge as issue in Clinton run

      Everybody Has An Opinion:

      31) Who's your nanny?
      32) The wrath of Ron Paul
      33) More on the "R" word
      34) Breaking the presidential pattern
      35) The politics of drug sentencing
      36) Democracy or liberty
      37) Neither democracy nor republic
      38) Immigration word games
      39) Movie review: The Astronaut Farmer
      40) I'm just loving all this leadership
      41) The angry American
      42) How Cheney bombed in Afghanistan
      43) L'Eggo my Lego
      44) Flake smoking a Cuban cigar or something else?
      45) The mystery note
      46) Colombia's "para-politics"
      47) Education tax credits can solve city's budget woes
      48) The fall of modernity
      49) Candidates who shun corporate cash are winning
      50) Techno Ted's Wacky Site
      51) US commanders admit: We face a Vietnam-style collapse
      52) We'll lock up your tired, your poor, your huddled masses
      53) Is Watada an isolated case?
      54) Bush faces opposition on Iran attack
      55) Playing "musical chairs" with a life
      56) Standing for a soldier's right to conscience
      57) The MCA, Gitmo detainees and habeas corpus
      58) A better alternative to daylight savings time
      59) A tale of two losers
      60) The trouble with Rudy
      61) Are new parents utterly insane?
      62) Supporting troops not a one-woman job
      63) Convention center funding should apply to private sector too
      64) A breach in the church-state wall
      65) Burying good news
      66) How society works: Plato's contribution
      67) The Pentagon's power to arrest, torture, and execute Americans
      68) The market and political freedom
      69) Religion and the vote
      70) One size gives all fits

      See No Evil, Hear No Evil:

      71) Christine Smith on The Liberated Space, 03/01/07
      72) Chalmers Johnson on The Sloan Ranger Show, 03/01/07
      73) Seymour Hersh on Antiwar Radio
      74) Free Talk Live, 02/28/07
      75) Freedomain Radio #660

      Weekly Symposium:

      76) Criminal justice system?

      What's Up In The Freedom Movement:

      77) Today's events

      WaYbAcK:

      78) Taking Texas

      ***************
      * In The News
      ***************

      1) Judge rules Padilla competent for trial
      Evansville Courier & Press

      "A federal judge ruled Wednesday that suspected al-Qaida operative Jose Padilla is competent to stand trial on terrorism support charges, rejecting arguments that he was severely damaged by 3 1/2 years of interrogation and isolation in a military brig. Padilla was in court when U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke announced her decision, but he showed no reaction. 'This defendant clearly has the capacity to assist his attorneys,' Cooke said just hours after she finished four days of competency hearings." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/384cuf

      -----

      2) McCain announces plan to announce announcement
      Glenn Falls Post-Star

      "Republican Sen. John McCain plans to make a formal announcement of his presidential candidacy next month after a trip to Iraq. The Arizona senator discussed the early-April timing of the long-expected announcement with reporters Wednesday evening a few hours after taping an appearance on CBS' 'Late Show With David Letterman.' McCain told Letterman: 'The last time we were on this program, I'm sure you remember everything very clearly that we say, but you asked me if I would come back on this show if I was going to announce. ... I am announcing that I will be a candidate for president of the United States.'" (03/01/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2yxy3y

      -----

      3) Iraq: One US Marine, one Iraqi killed
      CBS News

      "A U.S. Army helicopter made a 'hard landing' in northern Iraq on Thursday, but the military said the problem was mechanical and not the result of hostile fire. Two pilots were injured and evacuated to an American military hospital in Kirkuk .... The military also announced the killing Wednesday of a U.S. Marine in the western Anbar province .... The death brought to 79 the total number of Americans killed in Iraq in February. ... Baghdad appeared quieter Thursday, with only one person killed in a roadside bomb, police said. The lull came a day after a car bomb ripped through a bustling shopping district in western Baghdad, killing at least 10 people and wounding about 20."

      http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/03/01/iraq/main2526469.shtml

      -----

      4) OH: Sex offender law tested
      Cincinnati Enquirer

      "The Ohio Supreme Court will use a case out of Green Township to decide whether a sex offender living within 1,000 feet of a school can be forced to move -- even if the offender owned his home and committed his crime before the state's sex offender residency law was passed in 2003. The Supreme Court took the case Wednesday when it certified a conflict between two lower-court decisions. The defendant in the Green Township case is Gerry R. Porter Jr., a sex offender convicted twice -- 1995 and 1999 -- for sexual assaults involving two victims. In 2005, prosecutors moved to evict Porter from his home, because it was 983 feet from St. Jude Elementary School -- 17 feet closer than allowed by the 2003 law Porter owned the house and had lived there with his wife and two children since 1991." (03/01/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/264krd

      -----

      5) Arthur M. Schlesinger, 1917-2007
      Guardian [UK]

      "In his 89 years, Arthur M. Schlesinger was a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, a Kennedy insider, and an influential thinker who helped define mainstream liberalism during the Cold War. ... Schlesinger was dining with family members in Manhattan on Wednesday when he suffered a heart attack, Stephen Schlesinger said. He later died at New York Downtown Hospital." (03/01/07)

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/uslatest/story/0,,-6448979,00.html

      -----

      6) Whale pirate aims at Japanese fleet
      Houston Chronicle

      "Paul Watson flies the Jolly Roger from his ship and boasts of ramming more boats than any living seafarer, part of an anti-whaling crusade that even Greenpeace calls too radical. Watson and his group came under withering criticism this season, summer in the Antarctic, for tactics that some say put the lives of whales above the lives of people. A Japanese whaling ship caught fire after being chased and harassed by Watson's fleet, the ships and volunteers of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, which not only rammed the whaling boats but fired smoke canisters and ropes to entangle their propellers. Japan announced Wednesday that it was ending its whaling season early because of the fire, which killed a crewman. Although the blaze came a day after Watson's group pulled back for lack of fuel, and there's no alleged connection, Japan calls Watson a terrorist." (02/28/07))

      http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/world/4591412.html

      -----

      7) Gangs seize other gang's stronghold in Haiti
      USA Today

      "U.N. peacekeepers and Haitian police seized the last remaining gang stronghold in Haiti's largest slum on Wednesday, the latest in a series of military crackdowns aimed at stabilizing the impoverished and divided Caribbean nation. No shots were fired as scores of U.N. troops entered the seaside slum of Cite Soleil in armored vehicles and on foot, giving the international force sole authority over the lawless area for the first time, according to one U.N. official." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/3xor4e

      -----

      8) Democratic leaders revamp anti-war plan
      Fremont Tribune

      "House Democratic leaders are developing an anti-war proposal that wouldn't cut off money for U.S. troops in Iraq but would require President Bush to acknowledge problems with an overburdened military. The plan could draw bipartisan support but is expected to be a tough sell to members who say they don't think it goes far enough to assuage voters angered by the four-year conflict." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2scuma

      -----

      9) US to Italy: We're above petty things like laws
      MSNBC

      "The United States will reject any request by Italy to extradite CIA agents for the first criminal trial over controversial U.S. 'renditions' of terror suspects, a U.S. government lawyer said on Wednesday. A Milan judge earlier this month ordered 26 Americans, most of them thought to be CIA agents, to stand trial with Italian spies for kidnapping a Muslim cleric and flying him to Egypt, where he says he was tortured." (02/28/07)

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17390413/

      -----

      10) US blasted for treatment of detainees
      South Florida Sun-Sentinel

      "The U.N. human rights chief expressed concern Wednesday at recent U.S. legislative and judicial actions that she said leave hundreds of detainees without any way to challenge their indefinite imprisonment. Louise Arbour referred to the Military Commissions Act approved by Congress last year and last month's federal appeals court ruling that Guantanamo Bay detainees cannot use the U.S. court system to challenge their detention. The case is likely to go to the Supreme Court." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/3x5avn

      -----

      11) Prescription abuse to pass illicit drugs
      Shreveport Times

      "Abuse of prescription drugs is about to exceed the use of illicit street narcotics worldwide, and the shift has spawned a lethal new trade in counterfeit painkillers, sedatives and other medicines potent enough to kill, a global watchdog warned Wednesday. Prescription drug abuse already has outstripped traditional illegal drugs such as heroin, cocaine and Ecstasy in parts of Europe, Africa and South Asia, the U.N.-affiliated International Narcotics Control Board said in its annual report for 2006." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/22gm3r

      -----

      12) Airman gets 50 years in rape case
      Lexington Herald-Leader

      "A military jury ignored an Air Force captain's plea for leniency Wednesday, sentencing him to 50 years in prison for raping four men and attempting to rape two others. The sentence was delivered a day after nine Air Force officers serving on Capt. Devery L. Taylor's court-martial jury found him guilty of all charges against him for drugging and kidnapping servicemen and others he met in bars. Taylor was dismissed from the Air Force and will not be eligible for parole for 20 years." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2bmcwp

      -----

      13) British arrest another suspect in airline bomb plot
      CNN

      "Another suspect has been arrested in connection with a planned attack on U.S.-bound passenger jets using liquid explosives, Britain's Metropolitan Police announced Wednesday. The 27-year-old man was taken into custody Tuesday at an address in the Waltham Forest area of London, police said. In August 2006, 24 people were arrested in raids connected to the plot. Fourteen of them remain in custody." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/yrlnze

      -----

      14) Drug thugs kidnap dozens, steal millions
      Elkhart Truth

      "Dozens of people accused of working for a Mexican drug cartel were arrested Wednesday in a multistate bust that has netted more than $45 million in cash and tons of cocaine, heroin and marijuana, federal officials said. At least some of the drugs were carried over the U.S.-Mexico border on a bridge made from sandbags partially submerged in the Colorado River outside of Yuma, Ariz., authorities said." (03/01/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/36qkju

      -----

      15) Must parents of special needs child hire lawyer?
      MSNBC

      "Parents should not be forced to hire a lawyer to sue public school districts over their children's special education needs, the lawyer for parents of an autistic child told the Supreme Court Tuesday. 'What we're advocating here is access to the courts,' said Jean-Claude Andre, who represents Jeff and Sandee Winkelman, and their son, Jacob, in their fight against the Parma, Ohio, school district." (02/27/07)

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17370671/

      -----

      16) UK: 100 year old man fights off muggers
      Daily Record [UK]

      "A 100-year-old man fought off three teenage muggers after being surrounded at a bus stop. Buster Martin, who still works five days a week as a car washer and mechanic, was followed by the gang when he left a pub. He said: 'They pushed me against a wall and tried to take my money from me. I went mad. I was lashing out on the floor and then I stood up and was kicking them all. I pushed one and kung-fu kicked the other one between the legs. They ran off scared after I did that and I still had all my money. They thought I was an easy target but they didn't realise what a fighter I can be.' After the attack in Camberwell, south London, Buster staggered into hospital for treatment for a bruised rib and a bump on his head. But his boss at Pimlico Plumbers, Charlie Mullins, said Buster still turned up for work the next day." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2lqzgl

      -----

      17) CO: Begging banned on corners
      Denver Post

      "The Castle Rock Town Council banned street-corner panhandling Tuesday night, but not without weighing the impact to local charities. Mayor Randy Reed said complaints about aggressive panhandlers are rising, and the town needs the ability to make them move on. The ordinance makes panhandling at town intersections a misdemeanor that carries a fine of up to $1,000 and as much as a year in jail. The measure passed 5-2. The town, however, cannot legally single out homeless people and carve out exceptions for others, including the town's firefighters, who raise funds at intersections. 'It's going to severely restrict the amount of money we raise for local residents stricken with muscular dystrophy,' said firefighter and paramedic Joe Dell." (02/28/07)

      http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_5318784

      -----

      18) CA: Suit filed in swearing case
      Orange County Register

      "[A] Riverside student, charged with using profanity at airport, says O.C. law violates free-speech rights. A Riverside woman who faces a criminal charge of swearing at John Wayne Airport is suing the county, Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona and two sheriff's deputies, alleging infringement of her free-speech rights. The federal lawsuit of Elizabeth Venable asks a judge to nullify an 'unconstitutional' county law that holds that Venable 'unlawfully commit(ed) a disorderly, obnoxious and indecent act.' Deputies told Venable, a 26-year-old graduate student at the University of California, Riverside, to be quiet after she used profanity in a conversation with a friend while she was near children at John Wayne Airport on Aug. 14, 2006, according to Venable's lawsuit. The case was filed in Orange County this month. According to the lawsuit, one deputy wrote in his report that Venable responded, 'Is it against the (expletive) law to say (expletive)?' She was criminally charged,
      and now faces a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/3xb9gy

      -----

      19) Germany: Bird gets man into trouble
      Ananova [UK]

      "A German man caught speeding faces losing his licence because he had a cockatoo on his shoulder. Walter Konehauser, 45, said: 'She was bored at home and I wanted to take her for a ride.' He was stopped while doing 60mph in a 30mph zone in Augsburg, Germany. He faces dangerous driving charges. A police spokesman said: 'He should have had the bird in a cage, but when he was stopped it was flying around the car, and could easily have obscured his vision, causing an accident, or caused him to miss important signs like the one telling him to slow down.'" (02/28/07)

      http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_2221192.html

      -----

      20) UK: Thousands of schools back admission lotteries
      Independent [UK]

      "Growing numbers of state schools are expected to back the introduction of a lottery to determine who wins places at the top-performing secondaries. Labour-controlled Brighton and Hove Council has become the first to introduce random selection for places at its most popular schools. The system has the support of the powerful Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, which represents 2,600 of the 2,950 state secondaries in England. Its chairman, Sir Cyril Taylor, a senior government adviser on the academies programme, said: 'We strongly support it. What typically happens if a school is popular is it shortens its catchment area. Therefore the only alternative is selection by mortgage as house prices near the school rise.'" (03/01/07)

      http://education.independent.co.uk/news/article2314218.ece

      -----

      21) TX: 60-year-old woman fights off gunman
      KTRE News

      "Frisco police say a suspected carjacker is hospitalized in critical condition today after a 60-year-old woman fought him off. Police say the attacker was shot with his own gun during an overnight struggle with the woman in the parking lot of her apartment complex. The woman refused to give up her car keys, they scuffled and the 19-year-old man was shot in the abdomen. He then took back the gun and ran away, but was later found near the crime scene." (02/28/07)

      http://www.ktre.com/Global/story.asp?S=6153266&nav=menu118_3

      -----

      22) TN: Man shoots at home invaders
      Times News

      "A Kingsport man fired two shots at men who invaded his home early today, but he was stabbed twice during the incident. ... Frank Johnson, 25, reported he heard noise outside his home and someone knocking on his door. 'He went to the door with a pistol in his hand. As soon as he opened the door, an unknown black male rushed in and attacked him,' Lane said. A second unidentified black male entered the residence and stabbed Johnson in the left side and arm, Lane said. Johnson fired his gun and the two men ran out of the house. He went to the door and fired another shot and the men continued to run away." (02/28/07)

      http://www.timesnews.net/article.php?id=9000908

      -----

      23) Soldiers at Walter Reed told to keep quiet
      Army Times

      "Soldiers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center's Medical Hold Unit say they have been told they will wake up at 6 a.m. every morning and have their rooms ready for inspection at 7 a.m., and that they must not speak to the media. 'Some soldiers believe this is a form of punishment for the trouble soldiers caused by talking to the media,' one Medical Hold Unit soldier said, speaking on the condition of anonymity." (02/27/07)

      http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/02/TNSreedinspect070227/

      -----

      24) Medieval Muslims made stunning math breakthrough
      Yahoo! News

      "Magnificently sophisticated geometric patterns in medieval Islamic architecture indicate their designers achieved a mathematical breakthrough 500 years earlier than Western scholars, scientists said on Thursday. By the 15th century, decorative tile patterns on these masterpieces of Islamic architecture reached such complexity that a small number boasted what seem to be 'quasicrystalline' designs, Harvard University's Peter Lu and Princeton University's Paul Steinhardt wrote in the journal Science. Only in the 1970s did British mathematician and cosmologist Roger Penrose become the first to describe these geometric designs in the West." (02/23/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/34e7qz

      -----

      25) CA: Roman Catholic diocese files for bankruptcy
      Raw Story

      "Hoping to protect itself from more than 140 sexual abuse lawsuits, the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego filed for bankruptcy Wednesday, just hours before the start of the first trial. The move made San Diego the fifth US diocese to file for bankruptcy in the face of allegations of widespread sexual abuse by priests. The filing automatically stops the trials from going ahead. In a letter on the diocese website, Bishop Robert H Brom said the decision was made because any damage awards in the initial trials could deplete 'diocesan and insurance resources' and leave nothing for other victims. The diocese, which covers San Diego and Imperial counties, comprises 98 churches, 50 schools and nearly 1 million parishioners. Its bankruptcy filing states it has 95.7 million dollars in property holdings and another 60.4 million dollars in liquid assets, including stocks, bonds and operating accounts." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2wxld4

      -----

      26) Court: Raid of SF pirate station legal
      San Francisco Chronicle

      "Federal agents acted legally in raiding the Castro neighborhood office of San Francisco Liberation Radio in 2003 and seizing equipment that was used to run the unlicensed, low-power 'pirate' FM station, a federal appeals court ruled today. The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Liberation Radio was not entitled to advance notice or a hearing before the raid by federal marshals and Federal Communications Commission representatives. The station, which had broadcast music and 'radical progressive" politics on 93.7 FM for 10 years, was driven off the airwaves by the raid and now operates over the Internet. 'Neither broadcasters nor listeners have a First Amendment right to engage in or listen to unlicensed broadcasts,' the three-judge panel said, rejecting the station's argument that seizure of broadcast equipment without a hearing violates free expression." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2r6x9s

      -----

      27) CA: Wagner baseball card fetches $2.35 million
      Arizona Republic

      "The 'Mona Lisa' of baseball memorabilia, an almost mint condition 1909 Honus Wagner tobacco card, arrived in Los Angeles on Tuesday in the company of an armed guard but without its new owner, a mysterious southern California collector who shelled out most of a record $2.35 million for it. The tiny scrap of colored cardboard, barely 2 1/2 inches tall and not quite 2 inches wide, made an auspicious arrival at a Dodger Stadium news conference, carried to the podium in a formidable-looking black valise by an armed guard. ... 'The T206 Honus Wagner card has long been recognized as the most iconic, highly coveted and valuable object in the field of sports memorabilia,' said Dan Imler, managing director of SCP Auctions. 'Its legacy has transcended popular culture.'" (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/22vztm

      -----

      28) PA: Principal charged with meth dealing
      Fox News

      "A middle school principal was charged with dealing crystal methamphetamine after police found the drug in his school office. John Acerra, 50, of Allentown, was arrested Tuesday in his office at Nitschmann Middle School in Bethlehem, where police said they found meth on his desk. Police said they began investigating Acerra in early February after an informant told them that the principal was using and distributing the drug. There was no indication that Acerra sold the drug to students, but Acerra did allegedly sell the drug from his school office after hours and on weekends, said Dennis Mihalopoulos, an agent with the Drug Enforcement Agency. On Thursday, police watched Acerra sell a small amount of meth to a customer in a store parking lot, according to court documents." (02/28/07)

      http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,255462,00.html

      -----

      29) Ahmadinejad faces domestic criticism on Iran's nuke program
      Christian Science Monitor

      "Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad faces new domestic criticism from both reformists and conservatives after he called Iran's nuclear program a train that 'has no brake and no reverse gear' in a speech Sunday. The Guardian reports that 'critics from across the Iranian political spectrum' have taken Mr. Ahmadinejad to task for his uncompromising speech on the development of Iran's nuclear program. ... The Guardian also cites Fayaz Zahed, leader of the pro-reform Islamic Iran Solidarity party, who criticized Ahmadinejad for choosing to imitate the leadership style of Venezuela's Hugo Chávez, rather than that of more internationally respected leaders like South Africa's Nelson Mandela or the Czech Republic's Vaclav Havel." (02/28/07)

      http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0228/p99s01-duts.html

      -----

      30) Pardons reemerge as issue in Clinton run
      Boston Globe

      "Six years ago, the launch of Hillary Clinton's career in the US Senate was marred by allegations that her brothers had received payments from people pardoned by President Bill Clinton in the waning months of his presidency. Now, in the wake of the launch of her presidential campaign, the pardon controversy has reemerged in an obscure court case in which Senator Clinton's brother Tony is battling an order to repay more than $100,000 he received from a couple pardoned by President Clinton. Tony Rodham, who acknowledged approaching the president about a pardon for the couple, is the second of Hillary Clinton's brothers to receive money from people who were eventually pardoned by President Clinton. Hugh Rodham received $400,000 from two people, one of whom was pardoned and one whose sentence was commuted." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/28pgrq

      *******************************************************************
      * HEALTH-OF-THE-STATE-O-METER, 03/01/07
      *
      * Reported Civilian Deaths in Iraq: Min - 57,482 ... Max - 63,241
      * (source: www.iraqbodycount.org)
      *
      * American Military Deaths in Iraq: 3,162
      * (source: www.antiwar.com/casualties/ )
      *******************************************************************

      ****************************
      * Everybody Has An Opinion
      ****************************

      31) Who's your nanny?
      Reason
      by Jacob Sullum

      "Several California newspapers recently carried a story about 'nanny government' measures in the state legislature that 'irk Republicans,' including bills that would forbid smoking on state beaches, ban trans fats in restaurant food, and require calorie counts on menu boards. 'If somebody wants to go ahead and choose to do something that may not always be in their best interest,' said one of those irked Republicans, state Sen. George Runner, 'hey, this is America, you get to choose those things.' As long as those things do not involve, say, smoking pot. Runner, despite his defense of the right to do risky things, is a gung-ho drug warrior." (02/28/07)

      http://www.reason.com/news/show/118892.html

      -----

      32) The wrath of Ron Paul
      The Nation
      by John Nichols

      "With the Bush administration preparing formal plans for a quick attack on Iran ... a number of current and potential presidential contenders have been positioning themselves as the anti-Iran War candidate. ... But the most muscular criticism of the administration's saber rattling is coming from another possible candidate. ... The speaker is Texas Congressman Ron Paul, the libertarian Republican who has just finished a swing through New Hampshire do determine whether he should enter the race for his party's nomination. Paul is not without his flaws. But this Constitution-wielding contender, who voted against authorizing Bush to invade and occupy Iraq and has steadily opposed that war since its launch four years ago, would certainly make the GOP debates worth watching -- and perhaps applauding." [editor's note: Considering this comes from The Nation's staunchest progressive, libertarians might be grinning too! - SAT] (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2l4ajg

      -----

      33) More on the "R" word
      Liberty For All
      by Della Croft

      "Symptomatic of the breakdown of our society, is the rampant crime and mischief that accompanies any public event or gathering. From the annoying twit that will talk through an entire $8.50 movie, to the sociopath that thinks nothing of shooting an entire family in a McDonald's restaurant, the social fabric of this country is unraveling. We lack respect for one another and we rely on the government to fix our problems, never accepting the fact that we have made this mess by allowing the government to take responsibility for us." (written 08/00; posted 02/28/07)

      http://www.libertyforall.net/?p=540

      -----

      34) Breaking the presidential pattern
      AntiWar.Com
      by Alan Bock

      "President Bush last week continued his rather pathetic tour of former presidents, stopping at Mt. Vernon, George Washington's home on the Potomac, to deliver a speech that tried, with all the subtlety of a jackhammer, to compare the current occupant of the Oval Office with the Father of His Country. This is not a new phenomenon, though a bit more unwarrantedly arrogant than some. Recently the Bushlet has compared himself to Harry Truman, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and John F. Kennedy -- and some of his supporters have invoked Winston Churchill and Woodrow Wilson. The move, if riddled with signs of desperation, is a fairly obvious one. Most wars have their down periods, when things look close to hopeless. But leaders who persevere through the tough times tend to be viewed favorably by history -- or at least by historians. However divorced from reality in Iraq Bush may be, he is a thoroughly political creature and he must be aware that his standing with the American people is
      not exactly high just now. Trying to shape his legacy by invoking previous presidents is something most decent people leave to surrogates; doing it yourself is more than a little tacky. But Bush doesn't have a whole lot of credible surrogates to do the job for him." (03/01/07)

      http://www.antiwar.com/bock/?articleid=10582

      -----

      35) The politics of drug sentencing
      Boston Globe
      by Derrick Z. Jackson

      "There was a curious footnote to last week's Supreme Court oral arguments over criminal sentencing guidelines. One case involved Mario Claiborne of St. Louis, who received a 15-month sentence for possessing 5.03 grams of cocaine. That just crossed the line to trigger a federal five-year prison sentence.The 20-year-old Claiborne's lack of a prior record allowed for the five years to be lowered to 37 to 46 months. But the district judge gave him only a 15-month sentence. Anything more, the judge said, would be 'tantamount to throwing you away.' The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit overturned the verdict, saying it was way out of line with federal guidelines. Claiborne's attorneys appealed to the Supreme Court. It was not surprising to see the American Civil Liberties Union and public defender and defense lawyer groups file briefs on his behalf." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/29uqkh

      -----

      36) Democracy or liberty
      Free Market News Network
      by Walter E. Williams

      "Does democracy really deserve the praise it receives? According to Webster's Dictionary, democracy is defined as 'government by the people; especially: rule of the majority.' What's so great about majority rule? Let's look at majority rule, as a decision-making tool, and ask how many of our choices we would like settled by what a majority likes. Would you want the kind of car that you own to be decided through a democratic process, or would you prefer purchasing any car you please?" (02/28/07)

      http://www.fmnn.com/Analysis/120/7030/liberty.asp?nid=7030&wid=120

      -----

      37) Neither democracy nor republic
      LewRockwell.Com
      by Andrew S. Fischer

      "We all understand that we don't have direct democracy in the U.S., since with the exception of state 'propositions' which appear on ballots here and there, the population at large doesn't vote directly on any issue. This leads many commentators to assert that we have a 'representative democracy.' We choose our leaders, they correctly say, in a democratic fashion: majority rules at the ballot box. Then our elected representatives vote in Congress the way the people want them to vote. Hence, we have a democracy, albeit an indirect one. This is the sunny, Pollyanna version of our government that is taught to grade school students in our state-run public schools." (03/01/07)

      http://www.lewrockwell.com/fischer/fischer24.html

      -----

      38) Immigration word games
      The American Spectator
      by W. James Antle III

      "In 1986, Congress passed and President Reagan signed a bill that allowed illegal aliens to stay in the country in exchange for learning English, paying fees and fines, and passing a background check. The same legislation toughened border security and imposed employer sanctions. This bill was described, by supporters and opponents alike, as an amnesty. (Though it is worth noting that the path to citizenship created by the 1986 law was much shorter than anything likely to pass Congress today.) Phrases like 'earned legalization' and 'adjusted status' may be to amnesty what 'revenue enhancement' is to a tax increase. All these word games are an attempt to elide a real immigration debate." (03/01/07)

      http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=11091

      -----

      39) Movie review: The Astronaut Farmer
      The Price of Liberty
      by Lady Liberty

      "Everybody has a dream. Unfortunately, not many get to live them. Sometimes, it's disapproving parents that crush the dreams -- and all too often the dreamer along with them. On other occasions, it's families and friends who offer too little support. In the end, many a dreamer simply gives up his dreams as being too hard or too far-fetched to accomplish. But somehow, a precious few survive. Charles Farmer (Billy Bob Thornton) is one of those few with a dream left intact. It's possible that Farmer's dream has survived because he once came so close to achieving it all. He graduated college as an aeronautics engineer, and joined the military where he became a top test pilot. Eventually, he was one of the elite chosen by NASA to be a part of its astronaut corps. But on the cusp of everything he'd ever wanted, Charlie's father died and he went home to take over the family's debt-ridden ranch." (02/26/07)

      http://www.thepriceofliberty.org/07/02/26/ladylib.htm

      -----

      40) I'm just loving all this leadership
      The Power of Narrative
      by Arthur Silber

      "Now, some unkind critics of the Republicans say they like this sort of combat -- sending other people off to do the fighting, of course -- because they have deluded, nonsensical visions of their own 'manliness,' and relatedly that they're trying to compensate for considerable anxiety over their masculinity (or, as some genuinely unkind people might contend, for their fears that they have tiny ... well, you know). Whatever. The point is that lots of Americans die. This is cool, so shut up. On the other hand, Democrats love air wars. Call it the Truman Tradition, ably carried on by W.J. Clinton in Kosovo." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/353rx2

      -----

      41) The angry American
      The Weekly Standard
      by Duncan Currie

      "Webb comes from a Marine family and earned the Navy Cross, the Silver Star, two Bronze Stars, and two Purple Hearts in Vietnam, then ascended to Navy secretary under President Reagan. That's the real 'secret' to Webb's sudden transformation from longtime Republican to anti-Bush Democrat to liberal hero: He combines the most salient qualities of Dean, Kerry, Edwards, and Clark that Democrats found so attractive in the last presidential cycle. (Like Edwards, he also boasts proven red-state electability.)" (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/ytnspu

      -----

      42) How Cheney bombed in Afghanistan
      Salon
      by Sidney Blumenthal

      "Was the suicide bomber attack at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan on Tuesday an attempted assassination of Vice President Dick Cheney or a horse's head in his bed? The day before, Cheney had delivered a stinging message to Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf -- U.S. aid would be withheld unless Pakistan supported strikes against Taliban and al-Qaida forces that have nestled in Pakistan as a sanctuary, where they have gathered strength in anticipation of a spring offensive against the Afghan government. Musharraf's official response via a spokesman was immediate: 'Pakistan does not accept dictation from any side or any source.' Then came the bombing. Was it another form of reply? The Taliban claimed credit. But was only the Taliban involved?" (03/01/07)

      http://www.salon.com/opinion/blumenthal/2007/03/01/cheney/

      -----

      43) L'Eggo my Lego
      TCS Daily
      by Maureen Martin

      "Some Seattle school children are being told to be skeptical of private property rights. This lesson is being taught by banning Legos. A ban was initiated at the Hilltop Children's Center in Seattle. According to an article in the winter 2006-07 issue of 'Rethinking Schools' magazine, the teachers at the private school wanted their students to learn that private property ownership is evil. According to the article, the students had been building an elaborate 'Legotown,' but it was accidentally demolished. The teachers decided its destruction was an opportunity to explore 'the inequities of private ownership.'" (02/28/07)

      http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=022107C

      -----

      44) Flake smoking a Cuban cigar or something else?
      Intellectual Conservative
      by J. James Estrada

      "Rep. Jeff Flake, who was removed from his Judiciary Committee position last week mainly because of his support of liberal immigration policy, recently praised Cuba and made some inane comment about letting Fidel Castro dealing with spring tourism." [editor's note: Translated, this article comes down to "Flake is acting like he actually believes the guff Republicans have been talking about limited government since the days of Goldwater. Get'im outta there!" - TLK] (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/ytrh4q

      -----

      45) The mystery note
      Slate
      by John Dickerson

      "There was a moment of near drama in the Scooter Libby trial Wednesday. At 9:45 a.m. the lawyers, court sketch artists, and journalists (including Chris Matthews, who has a side role in this drama) packed the courtroom waiting to hear about a note from the jury six days into deliberations. But after we took our seats, Judge Walton said he wasn't going to read the note because he wasn't sure he understood what the jury was asking. 'I am going to send a note back to the jury saying, can you please clarify your answer,' he said. Everyone slouched back and waited for the rewrite. After a half-hour, Judge Walton returned with a new note. Now we'd get to see what they wanted to know. 'After further discussion we now are clear on what we need to do,' the note said. 'No further clarification. We apologize.' Never mind." (02/28/07)

      http://www.slate.com/id/2159578/

      -----

      46) Colombia's "para-politics"
      Independent Institute
      by Alvaro Vargas Llosa

      "Almost five years after President Alvaro Uribe declared war on them, Colombia's narco-guerrillas have scored a victory against that country's democracy. It has been revealed that a significant part of the political establishment had unsavory ties with the right-wing paramilitary umbrella group known as the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC). Foreign Minister Maria Consuelo Araujo had to resign last week after her brother, a congressman, was arrested in connection with the scandal. Why does all of this constitute a victory for the left-wing narco-terrorists? The revelations are reinforcing the Manichean view, held by influential organizations inside and outside of Colombia, that the country's bloody conflict pits two equivalent evils against each other: a guerrilla force led astray by a few corrupt leaders who deal in drugs, and a fascist state organically tied to the drug business and desperate to preserve oligarchic rule." (02/28/07)

      http://www.independent.org/newsroom/article.asp?id=1932

      -----

      47) Education tax credits can solve city's budget woes
      Cato Institute
      by Adam B. Schaeffer

      "Money problems have once again hit the Philadelphia school district, which might be as much as $140 million over budget next year. This news comes after the district came up $73 million short this fall, and is only the latest example of its outrageous inefficiency and financial mismanagement. School Reform Commissioner James Gallagher said recently that the problem could be solved by firing chief executive Paul Vallas. But changing personnel won't solve a systemic problem. Philadelphia can save the $140 million it needs through education tax credits, which have already proven themselves as a cost-saving and education-improving reform in Pennsylvania." (02/28/07)

      http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=8019

      -----

      48) The fall of modernity
      The American Conservative
      by Michael Vlahos

      "We are losing our wars in the Muslim world because our vision of history is at odds with reality. This is a well-established condition of successful societies, a condition that inevitably grows more worrisome with time and continuing success. In fact, what empires have most in common is how their sacred narratives come to rule their strategic behavior -- and rule it badly. In America's case, our war narrative works against us to promote our deepest fear: the end of modernity." (02/26/07)

      http://www.amconmag.com/2007/2007_02_26/feature.html

      -----

      49) Candidates who shun corporate cash are winning
      AlterNet
      by Jim Hightower

      "It's instructive that only hours after changing the House rules last month to stop lobbyists from doling out certain freebies to lawmakers, Democrats celebrated. How? With a fundraising gala that drew some 200 check-writing lobbyists, still free to pay and play. Well, say the cynics, the Democrats' hypocrisy just shows that you can't change the system -- special interests will always find their way around any restrictions reformers can dream up. Horsestuff. Look to the states and cities, and you'll find examples of citizens reclaiming their politics and government from the exclusive grasp of the monied powers. Their reform mechanism is a rather simple notion called 'clean elections.'" (02/26/07)

      http://www.alternet.org/story/48405/

      -----

      50) Techno Ted's Wacky Site
      Washington Post
      by Mary Ann Akers

      "It's going to be a lot more difficult now for Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) to shirk his 'Techno Ted' nickname (and techno-dunce reputation), what with the single weirdest message we've ever seen appearing on his campaign Web site. Almost as freaky as his infamously disjointed 'series-of-tubes' speech last year about the Internet (which briefly earned him the Most Lampooned Politician on the Web award), Stevens's reelection site asks visitors to enter a username and password and then -- as they unsuccessfully fumble for a password -- condemns them with a warning that begins: 'Through a series of highly sophisticated and complex algorithms, this system has determined that you are not presently authorized to use this system function. It could be that you simply mistyped a password, or, it could be that you are some sort of interplanetary alien-being that has no hands and, thus, cannot type.' (See screenshot on 2nd page of this post.) But wait, it gets even weirder ..."
      (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2llsdj

      -----

      51) US commanders admit: We face a Vietnam-style collapse
      Guardian [UK]
      by Simon Tisdall

      "An elite team of officers advising the US commander, General David Petraeus, in Baghdad has concluded that they have six months to win the war in Iraq -- or face a Vietnam-style collapse in political and public support that could force the military into a hasty retreat. The officers -- combat veterans who are experts in counter-insurgency -- are charged with implementing the 'new way forward' strategy announced by George Bush on January 10. The plan includes a controversial 'surge' of 21,500 additional American troops to establish security in the Iraqi capital and Anbar province. But the team, known as the 'Baghdad brains trust' and ensconced in the heavily fortified Green Zone, is struggling to overcome a range of entrenched problems in what has become a race against time, according to a former senior administration official familiar with their deliberations." (03/01/07)

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,,2023865,00.html

      -----

      52) We'll lock up your tired, your poor, your huddled masses
      Truthdig
      by Amy Goodman

      "'I want to be free. I want to go outside, and I want to go to school,' pleaded a 9-year-old boy, on the phone from prison. This prison wasn't in some far-off country, some dictatorship where one would expect children to be locked up. He is imprisoned in the United States. The boy, Kevin, is imprisoned in Taylor, Texas, at the T. Don Hutto Residential Facility. His parents are also locked up there. The tale of how this family became imprisoned is just one example of how broken our immigration policies are in this country. It is a tale of children left behind, of family values locked up, of your tax dollars at work." (02/27/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/27gmur

      -----

      53) Is Watada an isolated case?
      Common Dreams
      by Sarah Olson

      "Members of the military agree not to speak contemptuously about the commander-in-chief. Lt. Watada expressed himself respectfully, out of uniform, off base, and after work hours. It seems that the specter of military law is so dark and mysterious a force that ordinary civilians have ceded their ability to question the authority of those that wield it. Why is our civilian society so comfortable allowing the military to determine the parameters of acceptable speech during a time of war? Lt. Watada -- along with the thousands of men and women who are returning from Iraq today -- is uniquely positioned to speak about the military mission in Iraq. What do we lose when we allow the systematic exclusion of their voices?" (02/28/07)

      http://www.commondreams.org/views07/0228-26.htm

      -----

      54) Bush faces opposition on Iran attack
      Consortium News
      by Robert Parry

      "A number of US military leaders, reportedly including the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have waged an extraordinary behind-the-scenes resistance to what they fear is a secret plan by George W. Bush to wage war against Iran. One intelligence source told me that Joint Chiefs chairman, Gen. Peter Pace, has explored the possibility of resigning if Bush presses forward with air attacks against Iran, a war strategy that might be done in coordination with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert." (02/27/07)

      http://www.consortiumnews.com/2007/022707.html

      -----

      55) Playing "musical chairs" with a life
      Truthout
      by William Fisher

      "While Congress quibbles over 'comprehensive' immigration (providing illegal immigrants a path to citizenship, a guest worker program, etc.) versus 'border security' (building fences), the unasked question is: Regardless of which path the legislation takes, just who is capable of enforcing it? The job will fall to the Department of Homeland Security, those wonderful folks who brought us the Katrina debacle and 'Heckuva job, Brownie.' Our currently highly politicized Department of Justice will also play a role. But for anyone who needs yet another example of the gross incompetence of these agencies to implement anything efficiently, you need to pay attention to this story. The story is about a young woman named Rodi Alvarado who, at age 28, fled to the US from her home in Guatemala to escape ten years of brutal beatings by her husband, a former soldier in the Guatemalan military." (02/28/07)

      http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/022807S.shtml

      -----

      56) Standing for a soldier's right to conscience
      CounterPunch
      by Susan Van Haitsma

      "In Mark's court-martial, the fact that his conscientious objector claim had been denied prior to a looming second deployment could not be used as a defense to the charges of desertion and missing movement to which he pleaded guilty. However, it is important to note that the conscientious objector approval process in the military is considered by many to be a broken system. By law, the military must allow soldiers to apply for discharge as conscientious objectors when they have experienced, after enlisting, a 'crystallization' of their moral, ethical or religious beliefs about participating in war. However, J.E. McNeil, director of the Center on Conscience & War, says that, according to military figures, only about 50 percent of CO claims are being approved, and anecdotal evidence suggests the percentage may be even lower." (02/28/07)

      http://www.counterpunch.org/haitsma02282007.html

      -----

      57) The MCA, Gitmo detainees and habeas corpus
      CounterPunch
      by Marjorie Cohn

      "Last week, in Boumediene v. Bush, two judges on a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the provision of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 that strips the rights of all Guantanamo detainees to have their habeas corpus petitions heard by U.S. federal courts. If that decision is left to stand, the men and boys detained at Guantanamo can be held there for the rest of their lives without ever having a federal judge determine the legality of their detention. In my opinion, this appellate decision will likely be overturned by the Supreme Court next term." (02/28/07)

      http://www.counterpunch.org/cohn02282007.html

      -----

      58) A better alternative to daylight savings time
      Strike the Root
      by Joe Goodson

      "The more I think about it, the sillier the notion becomes that we must change our clocks in order to enjoy more daylight hours after the end of our daytime work shifts. It's time to get the government politicos out of the clock-management business, and out of our daily and nightly lives altogether." (02/27/07)

      http://www.strike-the-root.com/71/goodson/goodson1.html

      -----

      59) A tale of two losers
      The American Prospect
      by Michael Tomasky

      "It seems unimaginable today, but I remember a time when people used to say 'Tom Vilsack' and 'president' in the same sentence and no one clucked. This was 2001 or 2002; he was a moderate governor of a swing state, the first Democrat elected governor in Iowa in 30 years when he won back in 1998. He was a darling of the Democratic Leadership Council, which, like it or not, seemed then to be in a position of power in championing Democratic candidates. He was never destined for front-runner status, but his was the sort of name to which one responded by thinking whenever it was floated, 'Huh. Bears watching.' Well, as Lou Reed said, those were different times. When Vilsack dropped out of the race last week, he was confirming the obvious -- not only in terms of money, his stated reason for leaving, but also in terms of what's happened in the last five years. Vilsack's profile was now jaggedly out of tune with the times." (02/28/07)

      http://www.prospect.org/web/view-web.ww?id=12520

      -----

      60) The trouble with Rudy
      Tom Paine
      by Paul Waldman

      "According to the latest polls, Rudy Giuliani has a commanding lead over his rivals for the 2008 Republican nomination for president. Though polls this early mostly measure name identification (ask Joe 'Mentum' Lieberman, who was leading the Democratic pack at this time four years ago), it's hard to ignore the good feelings Giuliani generates among the GOP faithful. Yet at the same time, conventional wisdom has it that as conservative Christian voters learn more about Giuliani -- specifically, his positions on abortion and gay rights and his marital history (infidelity along the way to three marriages), the support will quickly fade. This conventional wisdom is partly correct, but not for the reasons we usually hear from the talking heads." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/3aqufk

      -----

      61) Are new parents utterly insane?
      San Francisco Chronicle
      by Mark Morford

      "My parents are rather nicely freaked out by this upcoming generation. My folks -- wonderful, wise, moderately conservative (I know, I know), long retired, still in love after 45-plus years of marriage -- they are now in full observational mode and hence they have many friends with whom they like to socialize and sip wine and enjoy the Palm Desert sunshine while offering up thanks to the gods of time and destiny that they do not have to be new parents in this day and age because, oh my God, it must be nearly impossible to raise a kid nowadays. Fraught. Baffling and tormented and complicated as hell. This is what they think. Because this is what they see." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2jt9hs

      -----

      62) Supporting troops not a one-woman job
      Arizona Republic
      by Laurie Roberts

      "In Washington, Congress threatens to cut off support for the war in Iraq. Meanwhile, across the nation, we are engrossed in a war of a different sort: the pitched battle over who will win custody of Anna Nicole's baby. Diane Valenzuela shakes her head at the state of wartime America. She tunes into the news hoping for some concentrated coverage on what's really going on halfway around the world and instead is treated to the latest on bald-headed Britney's every move into/out of rehab. She wonders whether America's support of the troops is waning along with its support for this war. And she worries about the signal it sends to the men and women who must fight it. 'I wonder whether this will become another Vietnam,' she says. 'I worry that, in some respects, it already has.'" (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/yqd2p5

      -----

      63) Convention center funding should apply to private sector too
      Nashville City Paper
      by staff

      "Good government should not compete with its own corporate citizens. As employers of all sizes are the backbone of our country, government at any level should not use public money to compete with private industry. Proposed legislation to allow Gaylord Entertainment Company to bond against a stream of new tax dollars previously earmarked solely for a proposed government-owned downtown convention center would allow Metro and the Tennessee General Assembly to level the playing field in Nashville when it comes to public funding and the hospitality industry. ... A bill now before the state Legislature that would enable this new tax package would also allow Gaylord as a company to expand their own convention facility and hotel by being able to use the revenue stream created by the new taxes levied on their own facility." (02/28/07)

      http://www.nashvillecitypaper.com/index.cfm?news_id=54868

      -----

      64) A breach in the church-state wall
      Christian Science Monitor
      by Andrew B. Coan

      "Significant constitutional cases don't always arrive at the ball dressed up as such. Sometimes they come in the modest trappings of an obscure technical dispute too dull to capture public attention. Wednesday, the US Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in just such a case. Hein v. Freedom From Religion Foundation is unlikely to make headlines, but it could deal a sharp blow to the wall of separation between church and state. The plaintiffs are ordinary citizens who object to their federal tax dollars being used to fund the president's program for 'faith-based and community initiatives.' In particular, they claim that several conferences sponsored by the program were propaganda vehicles for religion and therefore violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment, which forbids government promotion of religion." (02/28/07)

      http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0228/p09s01-coop.html

      -----

      65) Burying good news
      National Center for Policy Analysis
      by staff

      "Health care costs are increasing at their lowest rate in nearly a decade, according to the latest report from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which each year reports on health care spending and offers its forecast for spending into the future. For example: Health care spending growth in the United States slowed for the third straight year in 2005, increasing 6.9 percent." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/yub4bf

      -----

      66) How society works: Plato's contribution
      Ludwig von Mises Institute
      by J.G. Hulsmann

      "The theory of the division of labor is one of the cornerstones of economics. It is the very foundation of the scientific analysis of society and the market. According to this theory, cooperation among any number of persons is more productive than the individual efforts of the same persons in isolation from one another." (02/28/07)

      http://www.mises.org/story/2490

      -----

      67) The Pentagon's power to arrest, torture, and execute Americans
      Future of Freedom Foundation
      by Jacob G. Hornberger

      "The president and the Pentagon now wield the omnipotent power to arrest, torture, and execute any American they label an 'enemy combatant.' It is impossible to overstate the significance of this power. It has totally upended the relationship of the military and civilian in the United States. The assumption of this particular power easily constitutes one of the most monumental revolutions of liberty and power in history. It is a revolution that every American must confront now, not later. If people wait until later to confront the expanded use of this power, it will be too late, because by that time it will be too dangerous to do so." (02/28/07)

      http://www.fff.org/comment/com0702k.asp

      -----

      68) The market and political freedom
      Foundation for Economic Education
      by John Marangos

      "The history of civilized societies is a timeless effort to enhance freedom. Freedom must be viewed as a whole, and anything that reduces it in one aspect of life is likely to reduce it in others as well. Free people make decisions through their independent minds and have the courage to pursue their own convictions through exchange relations in the market." (written 06/99; posted 02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/27v8am

      -----

      69) Religion and the vote
      Acton Institute
      by Robert A. Sirico

      "For those who closely follow politics, the connection between religious identity and voter allegiance is a bracing reality. The reality is this: A decisive sector within the American public votes not on matters of public policy but rather on religious identity. On this score, the Republicans have a huge advantage. Its grass roots and its leadership are at home with open expressions of faith." (02/28/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/2d9fq7

      -----

      70) One size gives all fits
      Liberty For All
      by Garry Reed

      "The grandmotherly secretary at my day job knew exactly how to foil jetjackers. Everyone packs a photo document embedded with finger and retina prints. At the airport you subject your face, fingers and eyeballs to the digital scanners. If you and your documents don't match you don't get on the plane. I figured she was just too hip to think of such low tech alternatives as registered Hereford style metal ear clips or migratory bird leg bands or even bar codes tattooed on our napes ala Jessica Alba in 'Dark Angel.'" (written 11/01; posted 02/28/07)

      http://www.libertyforall.net/?p=539

      *******************************************************************
      * RRND MEDIA SHELF -- Tchotchkes from today's edition
      *
      * The Astronaut Farmer, movie showtimes and DVD notification
      * http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00005JPLC/rationalrev08-20
      *
      * Nemesis, by Chalmers Johnson
      * http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0805079114/rationalrev08-20
      *
      * Amazon Gift Certificates -- The perfect gift for readers!
      * http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00067L6TQ/rationalrev08-20
      *
      * Note: Affiliate links generate commissions for RRND's editors.
      *******************************************************************

      *****************************
      * See No Evil, Hear No Evil
      *****************************

      71) Christine Smith on The Liberated Space, 03/01/07
      The Liberated Space

      Christine Smith, candidate for the Libertarian Party's 2008 presidential nomination, discusses her campaign with host Angela Keaton. 4:30pm Pacific Time on Blog Talk Radio. [various formats] (03/01/07)

      http://www.blogtalkradio.com/hostpage.aspx?show_id=12084

      -----

      72) Chalmers Johnson on The Sloan Ranger Show, 03/01/07
      The Sloan Ranger Show

      Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute and author of Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, joins host Lloyd Sloan. 5:15pm Central time on WGNU 920 AM, St. Louis, MO, or live on the web. [live radio or stream] (03/01/07)

      http://www.sloanrangershow.com/

      -----

      73) Seymour Hersh on Antiwar Radio
      AntiWar.Com

      "Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter Seymour Hersh discusses his new article, 'The Redirection,' about how America is now backing Salafist Sunni radicals against Hezbollah in Lebanon, Shi'ite radicals in Iraq, every kind of radical but the Shi'ites in Iran, the manner in which American black ops are financed, why this is all worse than Iran-Contra, John Negroponte's conflict with Dick Cheney and his move from Director of National Intelligence to number 2 at State." [MP3] (02/28/07)

      http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2007/02/28/seymour-hersh/

      -----

      74) Free Talk Live, 02/28/07
      Free Talk Live

      "Govt Health Inspections / Cleanliness Competition / Rat Attack / The N Word / Aliens / An Unnecessary Apology / Ian is Arrogant and Close Minded / Single Issue People / The Free State Project / Immigration / Pot Activist Murdered / Narcodollars." [MP3] (03/01/07)

      http://media.libsyn.com/media/ftl/FTL2007-02-28.mp3

      -----

      75) Freedomain Radio #660
      Freedomain Radio

      "Emotional skepticism: What could be happening when people don't trust your feelings?" [MP3] (02/26/07)

      http://tinyurl.com/29z7v5

      ********************
      * Weekly Symposium
      ********************

      76) Criminal justice system?

      In a weekend blog entry, I had some things to say about the absurdity of legal firms offering pro bono assistance not to defendants, but to prosecutors (especially in "drug cases"). The first commenter on that blog entry, Robert Noval, takes another tack and makes a very salient point:

      The incentives in today's legal system are perverted. There's no good reason -- outside of a sense of justice -- for an attorney to actually litigate a criminal defense. Why spend several months and many man hours preparing for, and conducting a trial for one defendant for, say, $5,000 ... when ten defendants can be charged, say, $500 each and advised to "plead out" much more quickly and easily?

      Good point. Now, how do we fix it? Discuss.

      http://www.rationalreview.com/content/25387

      *************************************
      * What's Up In The Freedom Movement
      *************************************

      77) Today's events

      Check our sidebar calendar for this week's freedom movement events. Don't see your event? Drop us a line at info@....

      http://www.google.com/calendar/embed?src=info%40rationalreview.com

      ***********
      * WaYbAcK
      ***********

      78) Taking Texas

      Details, and the "quote of the day," from Leon's Political Almanac at:

      http://perspicuity.net/cgi/hypercal.cgi



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