Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Spreading the sad news

You think hate crimes always get big press? Think again.

It's sad...

Here we see the minimum wage by state. Interesting that the states satisfied with the pathetic national level are color coded a rusty version of red.

My agency did a study and determined that to live at bare minimum wage, even the Oregon minimum wage, a family of four would have to go without an awful lot of necessities. Never mind the nice "extras" like new clothes and school supplies. It's very, very sad.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Every once in a while something in the news makes me smile

Massachusetts Gay Marriage to Remain Legal

By PAM BELLUCK JUN. 15, 2007

BOSTON, June 14 — Same-sex marriage will continue to be legal in Massachusetts, after proponents in both houses won a pitched months-long battle on Thursday to defeat a proposed constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman.

“In Massachusetts today, the freedom to marry is secure,” Gov. Deval Patrick said after the legislature voted 151 to 45 against the amendment, which needed 50 favorable votes to come before voters in a referendum in November 2008.

(cont'd at link above)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Yay us! (Jericho post)

The article is basically about CBS saying that Dan Rather saying Katie Couric bringing a "Today Show" atmosphere to the nightly news was sexist. The argument is silly. But later in the article, we get this lovely bit.

Meanwhile, Moonves said the network's decision last week to reinstate a canceled show called "Jericho" following an outpouring of viewer e-mails and other protests spoke to the growing influence of the Internet on broadcasters.

"It was a campaign that couldn't be ignored," Moonves said of the mobilization of "Jericho" fans, saying it was "astonishing and well-organized."

As part of the campaign, disgruntled viewers delivered thousands of pounds of peanuts to CBS's corporate offices, a reference to a scene in the season finale where a character replies, "Nuts!" to a demand that the town in Kansas, which had been isolated by a nuclear attack, surrender.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Score one for the good guys

Man Labeled "Enemy Combatant" Wins Court Case

Published: June 11, 2007

Filed at 12:43 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush cannot order the military to seize and indefinitely detain a Qatari national and suspected al Qaeda operative, the only person being held in the United States as an "enemy combatant," an appeals court ruled on Monday.

In a major setback for Bush's policies in the war on terrorism adopted after the September 11 attacks, the appellate panel ruled 2-1 the U.S. government had no evidence to treat Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri as an "enemy combatant." The court ordered him released from military custody.

"The government cannot subject al-Marri to indefinite military detention. For in the United States, the military cannot seize and imprison civilians -- let alone imprison them indefinitely," Judge Diana Gribbon Motz wrote.

(cont'd at link above)

Monday, June 04, 2007

Good news from Guantanamo.

Guantanamo Canadian case dropped

A US military judge has dropped charges against a Canadian held at Guantanamo Bay, saying he could not be tried under new laws governing military tribunals.

Omar Khadr was just 15 years old when he was captured in Afghanistan.

He appeared in court charged with murder, attempted murder, conspiracy and providing support for terrorism.

But the judge ruled he could not be tried under current laws because he was not classified as an "unlawful" enemy combatant in previous hearings.

The charges were dismissed "without prejudice", said Col Peter Brownback, the presiding judge.

His decision deals a big blow to the trial system, says the BBC's Justin Webb, in Washington.
Tribunal issue

Mr Khadr had been classified as an "enemy combatant" under a previous tribunal system that was eventually thrown out in 2006 by the US Supreme Court.

But under new legislation approved by President George W Bush, only detainees classified as "unlawful enemy combatants" can face trial at Guantanamo Bay.

(cont'd at link above)

Now, I'm not going to rock the boat by complaining. Anything that makes the Guantanamo "tribunal" b.s. any better is to be encouraged.

But what's the difference between "enemy combatant" and "unlawful enemy combatant?" Who is a LAWFUL enemy combatant?

Can't we just admit they're prisoners of war and be done with it?