Ashcroft’s Priorities

This was discussed yesterday by Oliver Willis, TalkLeft, and the Instapundit, but Bigwig puts it all into perspective:

Which choice should the Department of Justice ignore?

1.) Biological Weapons
2.) Chemical Weapons
3.) Radiological Weapons
4.) Suicidal Islamic Terrorists
5.) Internet Bong Sales

John, you clueless Puritan ass, the only threat America faces from bongs is the threat to America’s carpets should they get knocked over. Here’s a secret, John, you moralistic twit. Anyone who bothers to order a bong off the Internet is less of a threat to the American way of life than you are, and they’re not kids. They’re Bobos and Yuppies, and a bunch of them would vote Republican for the rest of their lives if you would get the fuck out of their house.

Yep.

*** Update ***

This is even more outrageous:

State and federal authorities recently conducted raids of various companies and individuals that sell “drug paraphernalia”, such as pipes and related materials. Pipes, etc were seized along with their websites.

According to a Voice of America article, Mr. Ashcroft says they plan to redirect the seized websites to to the DEA website.

“Mr. Ashcroft says customers who want to visit some of their favorite drug paraphernalia websites are in for a big surprise in the days ahead. They will be automatically redirected to the website for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.”

In essence the DEA is going to usurp the freedom of speech and expression of the people who run those seized websites. This would be akin to the U.S. Dept of Justice redirecting the “aclu.org” website to the “usdoj.gov” website.

And then there are the serious privacy issues involved if the DEA redirects the seized websites, since they’ll be logging all visitors, obtaining their IP address and other highly personal information.

Bottom line is this is a serious issue and if the DEA is able to do this, they could potentially redirect *ANY* website -remember that the owners of the websites seized have *NOT* been convicted of any crime.”








Another Outrage

I want to know more about this, but if this is true, I am not amused:

You might think that with the country gearing up for war this would be the wrong time absolutely the worst time to cut federal school aid for the children of men and women in the armed forces.

Nobody would do that, right? Right?

Alas.

Undeterred by the anxiety and hardships faced by youngsters whose parents may be heading overseas, and perhaps into combat, President Bush has proposed substantial cuts in the government’s Impact Aid program, which provides badly needed funds to school districts that have a significant number of students from military families.

The program was established during the Truman administration. When a school district is in an area that has military installations or other types of federal property, it is cut off from a range of revenue sources residential, business and industrial property taxes, for example that would have been available if the land and facilities were privately owned and developed. The districts are still obligated, however, to provide schooling for children whose parents are stationed or work at such facilities.

Everything Bob Herbert writes must be taken with a Maureen Dowd sized grain of salt, but if this is true, and there is not more to this story than Herbert is mentioning, it is just wrong. And stupid. Did I mention wrong.

CalPundit talks about this…








Nick Rahall, Local Idiot

My state, West Virginia, gets enough bad press as it is. So why does one of our 3 members of the House of Representatives have to vote AGAINST condemning the UN giving Libya the Human Rights Chair?

Glad to know I have my own personal Barbara Lee or Dennis Kucinich here in West Virginia. Blech.








Islam, The Thinking Religion

After the Columbia disaster, I asked this question:

How long before the lunatic fringe is pointing out that this is a sign from God, as the crew with the first Israeli astronaut died over Palestine, Texas?

There are numerous examples all over the place, but this one is the most fitting what I thought would come from the real morons with an ax to grind:

THERE were renewed calls for the deportation of Abu Hamza al-Masri yesterday after he said that Allah had destroyed the shuttle because it was a trinity of evil against Islam.
The militant cleric said that God had destroyed the Columbia because it was carrying American Christians, an Indian-born Hindu and an Israeli Jew. He added that the crafts explosion was a message from God because the first Israeli in space, Ilan Ramon, a former fighter pilot, was killed over an area of Texas called Palestine.

The former imam of Finsbury Park Mosque in North London came under fierce criticism from politicians and leading Muslims. They accused him of inciting racial and religious hatred and revelling in the deaths of innocent people.

Mr Hamza, 44, said: The Muslim people see these pilots as criminals. By going into space they would have sharpened the accuracy of their bombs through satellites. These missions would increase the number of satellites for military purposes. It would increase the slavery of governance of other countries by America. It is a punishment from God. Muslims see it that way. It is a trinity of evil because it carried Americans, an Israeli and a Hindu, a trinity of evil against Islam.

The Muslim Council of Great Britain said: The vast majority of Muslims are now quite disgusted by (Mr Hamzas) sentiments.

(via the Corner)








Unbelievable

Atrios notes this unbelievable but probably entirely accurate report of document shredding at the INS:

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 30 Tens of thousands of pieces of mail come into the huge Immigration and Naturalization Service data processing center in Laguna Niguel, Calif., every day, and as at so many government agencies, it tends to pile up. One manager there had a system to get rid of the vexing backlog, federal officials say. This week the manager was charged with illegally shredding as many as 90,000 documents.

Among the destroyed papers, federal officials charged, were American and foreign passports, applications for asylum, birth certificates and other documents supporting applications for citizenship, visas and work permits.

The manager, Dawn Randall, 24, was indicted late Wednesday by a federal grand jury, along with a supervisor working under her, Leonel Salazar, 34. They are accused of ordering low-level workers to destroy thousands of documents from last February to April to reduce a growing backlog of unprocessed paperwork.

The NY Times story is here.