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Federal District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns yesterday ruled the Mt. Soledad Memorial Cross can stay where it is. The Atheist Communist

Liberation Union (otherwise known as the ACLU) has sued repeatedly to have it taken down and have consistantly lost every suit. The entire

story can be read at thomasmore.org. Their address is also there for those who wish to donate. They provide pro bono representation for

Christian based causes (I'm thinking Paul may want to donate some time or money).

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Federal District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns yesterday ruled the Mt. Soledad Memorial Cross can stay where it is. The Atheist Communist

Liberation Union (otherwise known as the ACLU) has sued repeatedly to have it taken down and have consistantly lost every suit. The entire

story can be read at thomasmore.org. Their address is also there for those who wish to donate. They provide pro bono representation for

Christian based causes (I'm thinking Paul may want to donate some time or money).

Section II.B. of the court’s opinion begins with the following statement: “The government’s use of religious symbolism violates the Establishment Clause if it has the purpose or effect of endorsing religious beliefs, or favoring one religion over others.” In defining its task in the case, the court ruled in the same section that “the court must determine under Lemon whether Public Law 109-272 had a religious purpose, whether the continuing presence of the cross as part of the memorial has the effect of advancing religion or favoring one religion over others and whether maintaining the memorial as public property fosters excessive government entanglement with religion. To pass the Lemon test, all three questions must be answered ‘no.’”

So your precious right wing court has ruled as a matter of law that your cross has no religious purpose, and does not advance religion or Christianity over any other religion.

So congratulations, stupid. The court just ruled that it’s not a Christian display.

The court went on to say: “Alternatively, the Court must evaluate under Van Orden whether the presence of the cross as part of the memorial transforms the overall character of the memorial into a ‘plainly religious display,’ and is so, whether the display convey a historical or secular message in a non-religious context.” So there’s that big-assed, 42-foot high cross standing there towering over everything else, but the court rules it’s not a plainly religious display. There’s nothing new here. The judicial right wing has historically held that black was white, as for example when the US Supreme Court ruled in Plessey v. Ferguson that separate facilities for “colored” folk could somehow be equal.

The District Court’s intellectual dishonesty couldn’t be clearer. “The Latin cross is, to be sure, the preeminent symbol of Christianity, but it does not follow the cross has no other meaning or significance.” Yeah, right. Let someone put up a Nazi swastika and we’ll see how many other interpretations can be found for that. This decision is an example of a court reaching the result it wanted to reach. Not surprisingly, this judge was appointed by George W. Bush.

Maybe this day will pass and maybe it won’t. Maybe real judges without a religious agenda will review this. But don’t ever say right wing courts don’t legislate.

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Federal District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns yesterday ruled the Mt. Soledad Memorial Cross can stay where it is. The Atheist Communist

Liberation Union (otherwise known as the ACLU) has sued repeatedly to have it taken down and have consistantly lost every suit. The entire

story can be read at thomasmore.org. Their address is also there for those who wish to donate. They provide pro bono representation for

Christian based causes (I'm thinking Paul may want to donate some time or money).

Onward Christian Soldier.....

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Federal District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns yesterday ruled the Mt. Soledad Memorial Cross can stay where it is. The Atheist Communist

Liberation Union (otherwise known as the ACLU) has sued repeatedly to have it taken down and have consistantly lost every suit. The entire

story can be read at thomasmore.org. Their address is also there for those who wish to donate. They provide pro bono representation for

Christian based causes (I'm thinking Paul may want to donate some time or money).

The judge, appointed by Bush, ruled that a 42-foot high cross wasn't a Christian display. Draw your own conclusions.

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The judge, appointed by Bush, ruled that a 42-foot high cross wasn't a Christian display. Draw your own conclusions.

Sometimes these things aren't. When symbols are present for a long time, they tend to become more a cultural or tourist thing than religious. Especially if the symbol is not used for religious purposes.

But being a Bush appointee his ruling is suspect. The Bush admin is not know for picking quality. If the senate did its job we wouldn't have so many problems.

The judge earned a gold star on his permanent record and Bush is still capable of nominating judges to the Court of Appeal.

Hopefully they'll appeal and we'll get a better idea.

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The judge, appointed by Bush, ruled that a 42-foot high cross wasn't a Christian display. Draw your own conclusions.

Good time to remind everyone of this:

"The Mt. Soledad Easter Cross was dedicated to "Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" in a dedication bulletin by the grandmother of William J. Kellogg, President of the Mt. Soledad Memorial Association on Easter Sunday, 1954.-- [Paulson v. City of San Diego, 262 F.3d 885 (9th Cir. 2001), Documents on file with the US District Court of Southern California]"

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Sometimes these things aren't. When symbols are present for a long time, they tend to become more a cultural or tourist thing than religious. Especially if the symbol is not used for religious purposes.

But being a Bush appointee his ruling is suspect. The Bush admin is not know for picking quality. If the senate did its job we wouldn't have so many problems.

The judge earned a gold star on his permanent record and Bush is still capable of nominating judges to the Court of Appeal.

Hopefully they'll appeal and we'll get a better idea.

It's obviously being used for religious purposes. Look who's defending it and look at the fervor of their efforts. Ironically, the more they push this, the more obvious it is that the prime motivation is religion.

If these things can be given the equivalent of grandfather status (they're OK if they're there long enough), then religious organizations can do an end run around the Constitution any time they want. The point ought to be that government doesn't promote religion or any one religion over others. Obviously, that's exactly what's happening here. The judge's decision is disingenuous on many levels. He looked for any excuse he could find to allow it, even to the point of saying that a huge cross isn't necessarily a symbol of the Christian religion. Give me a break.

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Section II.B. of the court’s opinion begins with the following statement: “The government’s use of religious symbolism violates the Establishment Clause if it has the purpose or effect of endorsing religious beliefs, or favoring one religion over others.” In defining its task in the case, the court ruled in the same section that “the court must determine under Lemon whether Public Law 109-272 had a religious purpose, whether the continuing presence of the cross as part of the memorial has the effect of advancing religion or favoring one religion over others and whether maintaining the memorial as public property fosters excessive government entanglement with religion. To pass the Lemon test, all three questions must be answered ‘no.’”

So your precious right wing court has ruled as a matter of law that your cross has no religious purpose, and does not advance religion or Christianity over any other religion.

So congratulations, stupid. The court just ruled that it’s not a Christian display.

The court went on to say: “Alternatively, the Court must evaluate under Van Orden whether the presence of the cross as part of the memorial transforms the overall character of the memorial into a ‘plainly religious display,’ and is so, whether the display convey a historical or secular message in a non-religious context.” So there’s that big-assed, 42-foot high cross standing there towering over everything else, but the court rules it’s not a plainly religious display. There’s nothing new here. The judicial right wing has historically held that black was white, as for example when the US Supreme Court ruled in Plessey v. Ferguson that separate facilities for “colored” folk could somehow be equal.

The District Court’s intellectual dishonesty couldn’t be clearer. “The Latin cross is, to be sure, the preeminent symbol of Christianity, but it does not follow the cross has no other meaning or significance.” Yeah, right. Let someone put up a Nazi swastika and we’ll see how many other interpretations can be found for that. This decision is an example of a court reaching the result it wanted to reach. Not surprisingly, this judge was appointed by George W. Bush.

Maybe this day will pass and maybe it won’t. Maybe real judges without a religious agenda will review this. But don’t ever say right wing courts don’t legislate.

Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

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Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

lol...if Christian principles founded the US, why isn't the First Commandment enforceable by law? Better lay off the Jesus juice before it messes you up anymore.

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Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

f**k RELIGION! ALL OF 'EM!

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Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

Atheism is good because it's free of the GAWD bullsh*t you and your goombas seek to infect upon trusting and seeking human beings.

The ACLU is good because even a cowardly scumbag like Rish Limpie who works to demise human unfortunates with such singular gluttony will find a safe haven within ACLU endeavors if the call beckons.

Christian principles today mean killing WHOLESALE third world pitifully defended Muslims for the greater expansion of apartheid Zionland, while the same Zionistics secretly mock and disdain bleeding Jeezee.

Wow............You have NO IDEA how glad I am to be me and not you, Guesteroo! :rolleyes::lol::lol:

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Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

Thank you for your support. Thomas More Law is a great organization and I make donations regularly to them. In addition to the Mt. Soledad defense, they are currently suing a NJ school district for banning all Christmas music from school musical shows.

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Thank you for your support. Thomas More Law is a great organization and I make donations regularly to them. In addition to the Mt. Soledad defense, they are currently suing a NJ school district for banning all Christmas music from school musical shows.

It's really funny how much time you're wasting on your "founded on Christian principles" delusion. It's only a matter of time before this nation is restored to its former glory, when radical religious extremists like you are marginalized like you deserve to be, and this becomes a truly secular nation again--where government won't interfere with ANYONE's faith or lack of it.

Enjoy your petty "victories" while you can. People are realizing how absurd your brand of extremism is, and atheism is growing at an unprecedented rate. We atheists know what real religious freedom is--unlike scum like you who would rob all non-Christians (indeed, even Christians who don't believe exactly the same way you do) of their rights, just so that you can put another indoctrination symbol out there.

But the game is already over. You just haven't realized it yet. What victory is this? Some dipshit Bush lackey made this ruling, and it probably won't even survive appeal. Obama's administration is going to undo all of this nonsense.

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Whatever the underlying reasons, the important thing is that the courts are getting fed up with the ACLU. Everyone is beginning to see them for what they are, a radical leftist, atheist organization. I applaud the Thomas More Law Firm for their commitment to defending the Christian principles that founded this great nation. I'll have a donation to them in the mail tomorrow.

If a series of ideologically driven presidents spend decades appointing judges who are hand selected to vote the way they want, the results are as predictable as is "justice" in any banana republic - which is what we're going to become if we don't stop this.

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It's really funny how much time you're wasting on your "founded on Christian principles" delusion. It's only a matter of time before this nation is restored to its former glory, when radical religious extremists like you are marginalized like you deserve to be, and this becomes a truly secular nation again--where government won't interfere with ANYONE's faith or lack of it.

Enjoy your petty "victories" while you can. People are realizing how absurd your brand of extremism is, and atheism is growing at an unprecedented rate. We atheists know what real religious freedom is--unlike scum like you who would rob all non-Christians (indeed, even Christians who don't believe exactly the same way you do) of their rights, just so that you can put another indoctrination symbol out there.

But the game is already over. You just haven't realized it yet. What victory is this? Some dipshit Bush lackey made this ruling, and it probably won't even survive appeal. Obama's administration is going to undo all of this nonsense.

Obama's administration ? Don't count on it. BTW, Obama's a Christian.

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Atheism is good because it's free of the GAWD bullsh*t you and your goombas seek to infect upon trusting and seeking human beings.

The ACLU is good because even a cowardly scumbag like Rish Limpie who works to demise human unfortunates with such singular gluttony will find a safe haven within ACLU endeavors if the call beckons.

Christian principles today mean killing WHOLESALE third world pitifully defended Muslims for the greater expansion of apartheid Zionland, while the same Zionistics secretly mock and disdain bleeding Jeezee.

Wow............You have NO IDEA how glad I am to be me and not you, Guesteroo! :rolleyes::lol::lol:

You have no idea how glad we all are.

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But the game is already over. You just haven't realized it yet. What victory is this? Some dipshit Bush lackey made this ruling, and it probably won't even survive appeal. Obama's administration is going to undo all of this nonsense.

Don't count on Obama for anything. He's a hard nosed politician from the Chicago School of Politics. Two years ago the Democrats told us that voting for and putting in a Democratic congress will get us change. The Democrats have had congress for two years and what has really changed?

The only change I have seen from Obama is him changing position like the wind. When running for the Dem nomination he stated he was against immunizing the telecoms that spied on us. When the vote occurred he voted to immunize.

You can blame Bush for this appointment and Bush does tend to pick 'suspect' individuals. However, nominations take two to tango. The president and the senate.

Every Democratic senator voted to confirm Bush's nomination of this judge.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll...&vote=00363

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Don't count on Obama for anything. He's a hard nosed politician from the Chicago School of Politics. Two years ago the Democrats told us that voting for and putting in a Democratic congress will get us change. The Democrats have had congress for two years and what has really changed?

The only change I have seen from Obama is him changing position like the wind. When running for the Dem nomination he stated he was against immunizing the telecoms that spied on us. When the vote occurred he voted to immunize.

You can blame Bush for this appointment and Bush does tend to pick 'suspect' individuals. However, nominations take two to tango. The president and the senate.

Every Democratic senator voted to confirm Bush's nomination of this judge.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll...&vote=00363

Hey Bern, the Loonys won't like you for telling the truth. Obama won't change anything because he won't get elected, every day he drops further in the polls. His back-peddling and flip -flopping, his promises to raise taxes, his policy against drilling and nuclear power, open borders, free college tuition for illegal aliens, pro quota systems, no military experience, and other far left policies spell D-E-F-E-A-T.

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Atheists, don't you just love them.

More so than ANY Bible/Koran/Torah thumper who argues the "My God is better than your God" BS and is willing to start a war beacuse of their zealotry.

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Don't count on Obama for anything. He's a hard nosed politician from the Chicago School of Politics. Two years ago the Democrats told us that voting for and putting in a Democratic congress will get us change. The Democrats have had congress for two years and what has really changed?

The only change I have seen from Obama is him changing position like the wind. When running for the Dem nomination he stated he was against immunizing the telecoms that spied on us. When the vote occurred he voted to immunize.

You can blame Bush for this appointment and Bush does tend to pick 'suspect' individuals. However, nominations take two to tango. The president and the senate.

Every Democratic senator voted to confirm Bush's nomination of this judge.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll...&vote=00363

I'm not happy about many of these judicial confirmations either, but there's a huge difference between voting to confirm a sitting president's nominee, versus making an appointment as a sitting president. Senators are expected to show considerable deference to the president's choices, and most of them do. Republican presidents since Reagan have so completely politicized the judiciary that deserve virtually no deference; but if that happens, the political divisions in this country will only escalate, so it's not something to be done lightly.

Regarding the choice in this year's presidential race, McCain has expressed his admiration for the most radical right-wing justices and promises to appoint more of them. Obama's appointments will be nothing of the kind. We desperately need someone other than a Republican for our next president if we hope to preserve the Constitution. That's quite a remarkable state of affairs, and a tragic one, but these Republicans have become so radical that it's the truth.

As for shifting positions, Obama has made fewer shifts than most presidential candidates. In the case of telecom immunity, I am incensed that this was done, but you can't truly say Obama contradicted himself. The bill was negotiated, and Obama voted for a changed version.

If Obama was reversing a lot of positions, you'd be hearing the old "flip-flop" taunt from the Republicans. The very fact that you're hearing very little of that tells you that Obama has not shifted his positions all that much - certainly less than McCain, who opposed offshore drilling before he was for it, opposed the Bush tax cuts before he was for them, etc.

There is a very clear choice in this election between someone who used to have principles but has abandoned them to pander to the far right (McCain) and the most exciting American politician in several generations. Barack Obama is an extremely intelligent man (first black president of the Harvard Law Review). He has all the intellectual requisites to be president, unlike his opponent who finished near the bottom of his college class and who appears to be forgetting things lately (Sunni vs. Shiite, no Iraqi-Pakistani border, Czechoslovakia divided into two countries fifteen years ago, etc.). His policies aren't as far left as I would like them to be, but they are clearly more responsible and more promising than those of his opponent.

More than at any time since the Great Depression, the United States needs a sharp political shift. The Republicans have done more damage to this country in the six years of their essentially unopposed rule (2001-2007) than has been done at any time since they last held unchecked control for that length of time - the 1920s. And amazingly, the reasons are the same. They're still stuck in the 19th century! They haven't gotten it through their thick skulls that as great a system as capitalism is (compared to any other system), it must be regulated and its natural excesses must be checked. You would have thought we would have learned that lesson from the Great Depression, but apparently we didn't.

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If a series of ideologically driven presidents spend decades appointing judges who are hand selected to vote the way they want, the results are as predictable as is "justice" in any banana republic - which is what we're going to become if we don't stop this.

You have just entered the Kool-Aid zone, all clear-thinking American's proceed with caution.

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Regarding the choice in this year's presidential race, McCain has expressed his admiration for the most radical right-wing justices and promises to appoint more of them. Obama's appointments will be nothing of the kind. We desperately need someone other than a Republican for our next president if we hope to preserve the Constitution. That's quite a remarkable state of affairs, and a tragic one, but these Republicans have become so radical that it's the truth.

There is a very clear choice in this election between someone who used to have principles but has abandoned them to pander to the far right (McCain) and the most exciting American politician in several generations. Barack Obama is an extremely intelligent man (first black president of the Harvard Law Review). He has all the intellectual requisites to be president, unlike his opponent who finished near the bottom of his college class and who appears to be forgetting things lately (Sunni vs. Shiite, no Iraqi-Pakistani border, Czechoslovakia divided into two countries fifteen years ago, etc.). His policies aren't as far left as I would like them to be, but they are clearly more responsible and more promising than those of his opponent.

I didn't realize that McCain has professed admiration for the most radical right wing justices. To me that's a big no-no. What have those far right justices ever done for the common man besides try to screw them?

Barack may be an extremely intelligent elite but that may not be an advantage. Most people are ordinary and would not be comfortable having a president who is an intellectual elite. Not doing well in school is not an absolute indicator of future success or failure. We usually do not pick presidents on how well they did in school.

I don't know what is exciting about Obama besides being an agent of 'change.' Whatever that means in this day and age.

An example of Obama 'change' is his decrying lobbyists and talking big about getting rid of the influence that lobbyists have on our political system. His campaign also has decried that the McCain and Clinton camps have ties to lobbyists.

So everyone gets excited - he's promising 'change'. Of course he conveniently forgets to mention that he was or is beholden to lobbyists and has done their bidding by introducing bills in Congress to benefit his lobbyists.

Obama working for his lobbyists

http://blogs.abcnews.com/theblotter/2007/0...te-rhetori.html

The article cited one bill, S 3155 but actually Obama introduced 15 bills for his lobbyists in the 109th congress.

They are items 41 to 55 on http://thomas.loc.gov/ (Search for bills by Obama, 109 congress)

41. [109th] S.3155 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on RSD 1235.

Sponsor: Sen Obama, Barack [iL] (introduced 5/25/2006) Cosponsors (None)

Committees: Senate Finance

Latest Major Action: 5/25/2006 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance.

His bills for his lobbyists attempted to override trade tariffs which has cost our government millions of dollars.

And the lobbying done by Exelon certainly has worked well on Obama

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/03/us/politics/03exelon.html

When residents in Illinois voiced outrage two years ago upon learning that the Exelon Corporation had not disclosed radioactive leaks at one of its nuclear plants, the state’s freshman senator, Barack Obama, took up their cause.

. . .

A close look at the path his legislation took tells a very different story. While he initially fought to advance his bill, even holding up a presidential nomination to try to force a hearing on it, Mr. Obama eventually rewrote it to reflect changes sought by Senate Republicans, Exelon and nuclear regulators. The new bill removed language mandating prompt reporting and simply offered guidance to regulators, whom it charged with addressing the issue of unreported leaks.

. . .

“Senator Obama’s staff was sending us copies of the bill to review, and we could see it weakening with each successive draft,” said Joe Cosgrove, a park district director in Will County, Ill., where low-level radioactive runoff had turned up in groundwater. “The teeth were just taken out of it.”

From the Chicago Sun-Times

http://www.suntimes.com/news/sweet/635462,...sweet05.article

Living in a glass house

Sometimes Obama has come late to the game. He did not stop taking rides on subsidized corporate jets until the week he was tapped to be the Democrats' chief spokesman on ethics in January 2006. In 2005, Obama took 23 such private aircraft flights, some to attend fund-raisers he headlined. In 2006, Obama led the fight to ban lawmakers from taking cut-rate private air travel.

As I said, the only change I have seen with Obama is Obama changing positions. He seems to be an adept chameleon. You accuse McCain of losing his principles and pandering but the above tells me that Obama lacks principles and I believe Obama panders to whatever will get him the vote.

Maybe you do, Paul, but I don't find Obama exciting.

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I'm not happy about many of these judicial confirmations either, but there's a huge difference between voting to confirm a sitting president's nominee, versus making an appointment as a sitting president. Senators are expected to show considerable deference to the president's choices, and most of them do. Republican presidents since Reagan have so completely politicized the judiciary that deserve virtually no deference; but if that happens, the political divisions in this country will only escalate, so it's not something to be done lightly.

Regarding the choice in this year's presidential race, McCain has expressed his admiration for the most radical right-wing justices and promises to appoint more of them. Obama's appointments will be nothing of the kind. We desperately need someone other than a Republican for our next president if we hope to preserve the Constitution. That's quite a remarkable state of affairs, and a tragic one, but these Republicans have become so radical that it's the truth.

As for shifting positions, Obama has made fewer shifts than most presidential candidates. In the case of telecom immunity, I am incensed that this was done, but you can't truly say Obama contradicted himself. The bill was negotiated, and Obama voted for a changed version.

If Obama was reversing a lot of positions, you'd be hearing the old "flip-flop" taunt from the Republicans. The very fact that you're hearing very little of that tells you that Obama has not shifted his positions all that much - certainly less than McCain, who opposed offshore drilling before he was for it, opposed the Bush tax cuts before he was for them, etc.

There is a very clear choice in this election between someone who used to have principles but has abandoned them to pander to the far right (McCain) and the most exciting American politician in several generations. Barack Obama is an extremely intelligent man (first black president of the Harvard Law Review). He has all the intellectual requisites to be president, unlike his opponent who finished near the bottom of his college class and who appears to be forgetting things lately (Sunni vs. Shiite, no Iraqi-Pakistani border, Czechoslovakia divided into two countries fifteen years ago, etc.). His policies aren't as far left as I would like them to be, but they are clearly more responsible and more promising than those of his opponent.

More than at any time since the Great Depression, the United States needs a sharp political shift. The Republicans have done more damage to this country in the six years of their essentially unopposed rule (2001-2007) than has been done at any time since they last held unchecked control for that length of time - the 1920s. And amazingly, the reasons are the same. They're still stuck in the 19th century! They haven't gotten it through their thick skulls that as great a system as capitalism is (compared to any other system), it must be regulated and its natural excesses must be checked. You would have thought we would have learned that lesson from the Great Depression, but apparently we didn't.

Incredible ! A far left liberal supporting the most liberal member of congress, go figure. Your post is total nonsense, nothing more than talking points from the Daily Kos, Huffington Post and other loony left bloggers.

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In the case of telecom immunity, I am incensed that this was done, but you can't truly say Obama contradicted himself.

Especially since he's still opposed to telecom immunity and has vowed to try to strip that provision.

This highlights a fundamental problem with flip-flop accusations, especially as they pertain to a lawmaker's voting history. The problem is riders. Many pork-barrel or special interest provisions that would never survive a vote on their own are pushed through Congress by attaching them to more sensible legislation, thus effectively holding the main bill hostage with the ransom being the passage of the unwanted provision. A side effect of this is that it makes it easy to prove accusations of the "Senator X said he opposes Y then voted in favor of it." form, insinuating that Senator X either lied or changed position, when in reality, Senator X never changed position, but voted as he did only because he believed the other provision(s) of the bill outweighed Y. Had he voted the other way, he might have been accused of flip-flopping on some other aspect of the bill.

And riders aren't the only source of a false appearance of flip flopping. For example, let's say a particular bill gets voted down. A few months later, it reappears with some modifications to the parts that were objected to the first time. It passes. Those who voted against the first version and for the second may have that used by an opponent as the basis of a flip-flop accusation when they're running for re-election. But even though it's undeniably true that they changed their vote, it may not be true at all that they changed or lied about their position.

Because it's so easy to "prove" and virtually impossible to avoid, flip-flopping is the fall-back mud when you can't find any real mud to sling at your opponent. Unless you like being manipulated, all flip-flopping accusations should be considered immediately suspect and held to a very high standard of proof. ESPECIALLY those accusations that agree with your preconceptions and that you want to be true. Those aren't necessarily any more likely to be false, but if any of them are, they're the ones most likely to deceive you.

The most insidious lies are the ones that ring true.

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