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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 27, 2005 9:58 PM. The previous post in this blog was Off with their heads. The next post in this blog is City officials warming to Wal-Mart. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Monday, June 27, 2005

How low can we sink?

George Bush, former frat president, now our President, has official-looking people at his public appearances who will escort you out of the event if you wear a T-shirt, or your car sports a bumper sticker, that doesn't meet with the Bush crowd's approval. (And who knows exactly who they are?)

Back when there was a political campaign going on, this seemed at least a bit slimy. But now that W. can't run for anything any more, it's downright alarming. I can't attend a speech by the President of the United States if I have a bumper sticker that opposes the invasion of Iraq?

That, my friends, and the fact that it's not on the front page of every paper in the land, proves to me that we are a nation in decline. Mohammed Atta is getting his way.

Comments (23)

Man, I f-ing agree. (Sorry...I think you ban profanity.) But seriously...why aren't people alarmed by this? It's just downright weird and Orwellian. Really.

How is this different than the vocal oppression of conservative thought that's been meted out on a daily basis --for FAR too long-- in community and academic events in certain liberal bastions around this country? Oh - that's right. The difference is that, in this case, the overzealous bad actor was a supporter of Bush.

One man's decline is another's ascension to balance.


Fear, loathing, too self indulgent, or just “too burned out to mow the lawn” (kudos Todd & the Eights). Why are we inert with paralysis? Mouth’s agape in horror while sitting impotent and silent? I wonder what has occurred to stifle dissent so disturbingly?? Oops, is that gulag worthy rhetoric?

A kindred difference lies equidistant betwixt civil disobedience and uncivil disobedience. One is noble dissent, and the other is just bad manners. Some people have a scintilla or more of class, and they are almost always welcome. Others snivel and bluster ham-handedly, accusing those who finally bounce them of being Nazis and such. I wouldn't want them at my party either, regardless of their politics.

Ignorance. Mixed with a dash of stupidity, like that of the poster above, who can't distinguish argument from repression. Or that of our senior senator, who returns from a trip to Cuba to pronounce as well-treated individuals who are incarcerated indefinitely, with no right to counsel, hearings, trials or other elements of due process, and subjected to torture by our own government. How can we have sunk so low? Ignorance of the principles that matter, that are the basis of what once was a free and democratic society and no longer is anything of the kind. And stupidity,

How is this different than the vocal oppression of conservative thought that's been meted out on a daily basis --for FAR too long-- in community and academic events in certain liberal bastions around this country?

It's telling that conservatives don't even BOTHER trying to defend Bush anymore--they just move directly into vague assertions that something else equally bad happened to some unknown person somewhere else at some point in the past.

And by the way, Scott, the "bad actor" in this was not merely a "supporter of Bush," but a Bush-paid employee who was impersonating a Secret Service agent at an ostensibly public event. I'm sure it doesn't matter to you, but it does matter to the Secret Service, which is pursuing a criminal investigation.

I agree with Allan, that we are sinking because of the general ignorance /lack of appreciation of the basic elements of due process. Also, while politeness and civility make the life more pleasant for everyone, there are some who elevate good manners and "decency" to a bedrock principle.So we have people like John Ashcroft clothing statues and writers afraid to use literary devices like irony and hyperbole. It is laughable, but also frigtening.

I'll be sure to wear a t-shirt with Monica kneeling in front of Clinton to the next Democratic event. I'll be ejected - properly so - and you whiners know it.

Not allowing in folks who aren't with the program is the event holder's right, no matter who it is.

I'll be sure to wear a t-shirt with Monica kneeling in front of Clinton to the next Democratic event. I'll be ejected - properly so - and you whiners know it. Not allowing in folks who aren't with the program is the event holder's right, no matter who it is.

Two points: first of all, you wouldn't be ejected, you'd just be laughed at as the Clinton/Lewinsky obsessed wingnut you'd appear to be.

Second point, more important: at a "Democratic Party" event, yes, you could be kicked out because that is a PRIVATE event, paid for with DNC monies, etc. The people in this article were ejected from a public event, paid for by taxpayer monies. Different animals altogether.

Dave J wrote:

"It's telling that conservatives don't even BOTHER trying to defend Bush anymore--they just move directly into vague assertions that something else equally bad happened to some unknown person somewhere else at some point in the past."

What's telling is your stereotyping of conservatives based on one person's post. Further, only Rip van Winkle would need to see links to concrete examples of the stifling of conservative thought in social and academic circles. Do you deny that such bias has existed and continues to exist?

David J. also wrote:

"And by the way, Scott, the "bad actor" in this was not merely a "supporter of Bush," but a Bush-paid employee who was impersonating a Secret Service agent at an ostensibly public event. I'm sure it doesn't matter to you, but it does matter to the Secret Service, which is pursuing a criminal investigation."

If the impostor broke the law, he should suffer the consequences. Just like the "sons of prominent Milwaukee Democrats" who slashed the tires of GOP vehicles on the eve of the election. http://www.jsonline.com/news/metro/jan05/295825.asp?format=print

Do you deny that such bias has existed and continues to exist?

No, not at all, but if the best defense of the White House's forcible expulsion of people with a different view from a PUBLIC event is to tell me about some prof somewhere who once criticized a student who wrote a paper that criticized Democrats, then your position is truly laughable, if not downright pathetic.

C'mon, address this issue on its merits. Don't pull the Bush trick of blaming all the problems on some low-level "overzealous" staffer--this is clearly sanctioned policy.

Are you really saying that policy sanctioned by the White House--ejecting citizens from a taxpayer funded event--is even remotely comparable to the idiot teenage sons of some Democrats in Wisconsin slashing tires? Unbelievable.

Dave J - I'm not quite sure why you continue to presuppose my argument, insert your own straw men to knock down, and state as fact that which has not been proven.

Official sanctioned policy? Bush-paid employee?Says who? Give me a credible source for those assertions, not paranoia.

The merits have been addressed - three liberals got a taste of being not welcome at a "public" event organized by conservatives. Nothing more.

I would be interested to know how, exactly, they were "identified after they arrived as potential troublemakers", though. Something tells me it was more than bumper sticker. And if they were truly out of line, then they should have been booted. And they should quit whining about it.

The beauty of our nation is supposed to be that dissenters of either side can attend events of the other, provided they abide by the law. Based on the articles I'm seeing, the ejected democrats were wearing "Stop The Lies" T-Shirts--under another layer of clothing. It's their first amendment right to do so, since a T-shirt, especially an invisible one, is neither disruptive or dangerous. It would be an equal right to wear a Monica T-shirt to a Clinton rally, although as protests go, it seems that protesting a clandestine sex act isn't as important as the deaths of nearly 1500 of our troops and countless others. But if the hypothetical Monica protester were ejected from a Democratic event, I'd be mad about that too.

If it turns out the White House is behind the ejection of the Denver audience members (I can't even call them protestors until I see an account that they did something other than attend with a layered-over T-shirt), it's not only a suppression of American values, it's also a sign that the President and his party are positively desparate to avoid contact with anyone who has any chance of disagreeing with them. This practice doesn't lead to improved thought--in people of either party. It's terribly sad.

Here's a somewhat more cut-and-dried case...a University of Arizona student was denied access to the President's Social Security town meeting in Arizona a few months back because he was wearing a U of A College Democrats T-Shirt. It wasn't a Republican Party event. It was a speech by our President. This isn't even a matter of dissent...the shirt doesn't protest the President's policies. It just indicates that he belongs to the other party--and yet he was denied entry to the speech. Does anyone have a defense of denying this guy entry?

http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/index.php?page=local&story_id=032205a2_bushstudent

While home burned, the people piddled with personal peeves rather than substantively addressing the much much larger issue Jack raised. There is an administration which wants no opposition of any kind. As much as I like the internet, I look back longingly at what would be going on in America's streets if this administration had been in power in the '60s. I wonder sometimes if the internet has vitiated that energy of really doing something. Just a thought.

Scott R - "I would be interested to know how, exactly, they were "identified after they arrived as potential troublemakers", though. Something tells me it was more than bumper sticker."

And that's the crux of the problem: when the kids on the left act inappropriately it's OK.

As for lefty whining (versus the right at least acting like adults): Can you name even one traffic-stopping protest held downtown NOT run by the left? I can't.

Scott--

Is putting a "No Blood for Oil" bumper sticker on one's car or wearing a College Democrats T-Shirt "acting inappropriately"?

Scott- I agree, and no, I can't think of any of those kinds of events that have been sponsored by right.

Teacherrefpoet - You make a good point. The display of such a bumper sticker or the wearing of that tshirt, without more, would not seem to be behavior "inappropriate" enough to require removal from the event. The question is, was there more? Call me cynical, but there probably was, and I for one would like to know what else these folks did.

On the other hand, if these people truly did nothing other than show up at the event with their thoughts on display, and did not say or do anything to break a law/regulation or that would constitute unprotected speech in the type of forum in which the event was held, then their removal likely was inappropriate.

I would like to find solid moral ground to stand separate on, unaffected and unconnected, incomplicit, where I could watch to see how low goes the sinking. Of course, when it is WE who are sinking -- you and me and two centuries' spirits of America -- there is no exclusion and the leaders' lies are bringing us all down together.

Or, as Bruuuuuce sang it: "We swore we would all go down together." But some (rich workers-pension thieves, military- and governemnt-contract defrauders) had their fingers crossed in betrayal when they swore common allegiance, and they intend and expect they can step away from the quagmire sinking, at the last minute, and excempt themselves to a paradise island with their offshore accounts.

Just saying, it struck me that the question "How low can we sink?" implied someone could have a detached place from which to measure the falling 'we' relative to and apart from themself.

Ya' know, Jack, as much fun as you have and share through your picture happy digital camera, I bet you might enjoy documenting counter blows against the empire, and maybe punching a few jabs yourself in facts.

If nothing else, it may be a way to picture the uplifting and be the humor antidote for quicksand hysteria.

As for lefty whining (versus the right at least acting like adults): Can you name even one traffic-stopping protest held downtown NOT run by the left? I can't.

Well, what about picketing and protesting at hospice centers? Because I can think of some of those that were run by the right.

Oh, almost forgot, I see your Republican criminals (from the posted link) ...

"Even so, they were ... forcefully removed by a man who, they had been told, was a Secret Service agent. Only later did they learn that the man wasn't an agent at all. The Secret Service launched an investigation (it's a crime to impersonate a law enforcement official), and the agency and the White House have both learned the impostor's identity -- but they're not talking."

... and raise you military industry war criminals ...

U.S. ROGUE PENTAGON AGENTS OPERATING ILLEGALLY AND WITH IMPUNITY ABROAD

Washington, DC -- Jun 26, 2005 -- There is increasing evidence that units of the Pentagon, operating under the authority of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Undersecretary for Intelligence Stephen Cambone, and Deputy Undersecretary of Intelligence Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin, are operating outside U.S. domestic law and routinely violating international treaties and laws ratified by the United States.

The covert Pentagon units, operating under an "above top secret" carve out program called Task Force 121(TF 121) (at last report), and drawing from special operations personnel in the Army's Delta Force, Green Berets, the Navy SEALS, British Special Air Service (SAS) and Special Boat Service (SBS), and various ex-U.S. and foreign intelligence and Special Operations (including British SAS, Israeli Sayaret Mat'kal, and South African Recce Commandos) personnel hired from shadowy private contractors, are now being linked to illegal kidnapings, posing as U.S. law enforcement agents (including FBI agents) and journalists, and assassinations of foreign political leaders.
Informed sources report that FBI Special Agent M. Chris Briese of the FBI's Counter-Terrorism Division (CTD) and Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the Pittburgh office is now investigating TF 121 on behalf of Director Robert Mueller. The investigation is focusing on whether TF 121 members, using false FBI credentials, have negotiated with informants and counter-terrorism targets on behalf of the bureau and have sexually accosted individuals, including American women in Florida bars, with the claim that they are FBI agents.
[Emphases added in both citations.]

Ya' know, at some time when enough dots connect and form the shape of the swastika, our observations and decided actions should deal with that wider recognition and pronounce the guilt in it. So we stop losing time diving back into crime details and doting on this or that isolated dot.

It's Nuremberg time.

"Well, what about picketing and protesting at hospice centers?"

Nice try, but not even close. When those hospice guys stop traffic downtown then whine when they get pepper-sprayed for endangering everyone downtown, then give me a call.

As for lefty whining (versus the right at least acting like adults): Can you name even one traffic-stopping protest held downtown NOT run by the left? I can't.


Boy if we RIGHTY'S, did a protest, there maybe some real need for traffic re-routing, the left just runs lights. We would take the I-5, an the 405 just for the fun of it.

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