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Thu, Dec. 2nd, 2004, 09:22 pm
checkyourfacts: Sorry it's so late

Here's the link to our new site. I like it a lot better because it's a real forum, instead of a livejournal community acting like a forum. Membership is unrestricted, so please join up and start talking, we need to get as many people involved as we can.

The American Spirit

Please email me if you have any trouble signing up. Sometimes the temporary password doesnt get emailed for some reason, but I can change the password to let you in as the administrator. Email is the_american_spirit@hotmail.com

Fri, Nov. 26th, 2004, 10:13 am
checkyourfacts: (no subject)

If you see this, please visit the site again over the next few days as we will be posting a link to the new forum we are setting up. We appreciate everyone for their efforts and attention to this community, but we sincerely believe that this new site will be more condusive to our goals.

Thank you, and please return. New link posted by Monday Morning.

Tue, Nov. 16th, 2004, 12:39 am
angelzashez: a purple america

i stumbled across this tonight on accident. i thought it was a rather refreshing view of the united states after that super polarized election day red and blue map...none of that us vs them stuff. and you can order t-shirts! hooray!

http://www.princeton.edu/~rvdb/JAVA/election2004/
http://www.boingboing.net/images/Purple-USA.jpg

still no word from the religious right as to whether or not a purple united states is offensive : )

Wed, Nov. 10th, 2004, 02:35 pm
libbymonster: (no subject)

http://www.toothpastefordinner.com/100804/political-voting-logic.gif

thought this might make you laugh a little bit.

but to make it more serious, do people actually do things like that? i mean... not on sandwiches... but in elections. it seems about as smart as voting for mickey mouse :)

Sat, Oct. 9th, 2004, 06:24 pm
a_darker_shade: (no subject)

Quick question. Maybe this is just me being really ignorant, but oh well...

What the hell is the point of the write-in option on a ballot? I just don't get it. Obviously if one person votes for you you're not going to win... So what's the point?

//faith

Tue, Nov. 9th, 2004, 05:18 pm
checkyourfacts: Bush's First Major Iraq Cover-Up Since the Election: Links Below

Wikipedia: Martial Law

Though I'm sure many of you didn't know it, on that lazy, peaceful Sunday afternoon you enjoyed a few days ago you should've caught the headlines instead of going outside. Had you, you would have noticed the same thing I did. Lower on the homepage was a headline that read "Iraq's Allawi Defends State of Emergency." Many of you would have glossed over even that, not realizing (as I didn't at first) the euphemism in place. On reading the article, we find that Allawi has chosen to enforce an "emergency declaration" that allows for curfews and restricted access to Baghdad's airports. Sounds docile enough, though the curfew should bug you.

"Prime Minister Ayad Allawi strongly objected to media descriptions of the decree announced Sunday as martial law and stressed the steps were being taken only to curb the insurgency and not clamp down on civil liberties." Well, that's kind of like punishing lawful gunowners for the actions of those who commit violent crimes with firearms. The problem with this kind of legislation is that its only obeyed by lawful citizens, and regardless of in which direction the steps were taken, they are curbing civil liberties, though, as said before, at this point in the article to only a minor extent.

"Spelling out details at a news conference, Allawi said round-the-clock curfews was to take effect in Fallujah and Ramadi starting at sundown Monday and that all roads into the two cities would be closed. No residents may carry weapons, and government offices were ordered closed except for emergency services like hospitals and the fire department...In addition, Allawi said Iraq was temporarily closing its borders with Syria and Jordan, allowing in only trucks carrying food and other ``emergency deliveries.'' Baghdad International Airport would close for 48 hours, he said." And now there's more civil liberties being taken away.

I think what bothers me the most is that we're trying to establish democracy in a country that is now practicing martial law.

Sunday's Article in the NY Times (Revised Monday)

So I did some researching. Searched back in the NY Times and found this article from July 7, 2004, from which I excerpted the following quote:

Prime Minister Iyad Allawi on Tuesday signed into law broad martial powers that allow him to impose curfews anywhere in the country, ban groups he considers seditious and order the detentions of people suspected of being security ... Putting a law in place that permits him to establish emergency powers..

The Reach of War

Now that's a little more scary, isn't it. Further research, this article from July 8, 2004:

Prime Minister Iyad Allawi and other government ministers formally unveiled a sweeping law on Wednesday that would allow them to declare martial law to curb unrest. ... ''We will use this law and the items in the law whenever it is necessary to defeat our enemies,'' Mr. Allawi told reporters...

The Reach of War 2

This, of course, is not martial law.

The scary thing about all this is I had to dig pretty far to be able to find anything on this. I started looking on Monday, the day after it happened. I was in the Underground with Brad and wanted to show him the article that I had seen. So I went to the NY Times, and it wasn't on the homepage anymore. So I went to International, then Middle East...and usually under "All Headlines" it gives the major news for the last few days...nothing.

Do you know what it had instead? Five articles about the attack against Falluja. At least three about Iraqi progress towards democracy, because they're allowing expatriates to vote.

I finally, after searching CNN, the BBC and Reuters where I found absolutely nothing (so much for the liberal news media) I found an article on Common Dream. The scariest part of it is at the bottom:

"Iraq's law gives the government the right to impose curfews, set up checkpoints, and search and detain subjects, provided they have a valid reason and present suspects before a judge within 24 hours...The period of martial law can be extended with the written approval of Allawi and a presidential council at 30-day intervals, but would automatically expire if not extended."

The extension of martial law can occur by the prime minister and a presidential council, therefore, with no input from a branch of government outside of the executive .

So the question is, how did this get away from us all? Practically no one knows about it that I haven't shown it to. I've been racking my brain for two days, since I've been writing an eleven page take-home political theory essay and haven't been able to post this sooner, for another reason that it was so quickly and efficiently scraped from major media. I couldn't come up with another one, so here's my conclusion.

The Bush administration realizes how bad widespread knowledge of martial law in Iraq would appear two months before national elections in this fledgling democracy. Therefore, Allawi was instructed to declare it at a strategic point, when it could hit the front pages and bounce back off. They had been preparing to attack Falluja for almost a week, why did they choose Monday? They effectively inundated the media with news of the "Battle of Falluja" and Iraq's democratic progress, allowing its gigantic step backward towards authoritarian government to go largely unnoticed.

More on this topic as I'm able to look further into it.

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