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I know not much attention gets paid to the 52nd district around here, but damn, Duncan Hunter's been pissing me off lately. The longtime representative of the Military Industrial Complex masquerading as a representative of the people has proposed a couple of really nasty pieces of legislation. The man loves to pretend to be a big supporter of the military, but in both cases, the military doesn't want what he's offering. This time though, instead of pandering to his base, the Military Industrial Complex, he's pandering to Bush, and the Dominionist Evangelicals.

The first is pretty well known, but his name doesn't seem to be getting much mention with regards to it. It turns out, he's the one who's been heavily pushing the Bush approved detainee treatment proposal. Maybe he thinks Guantanamo's simply too much of a resort, what with their nice meals and breezy cages. Or maybe Duncan Hunter's just too much in love with Bush, frankly I don't really care what the reason is. Even with the Pentagon opposed to the Bush version, Duncan Hunter still insists he knows better than all those Career military officers and enlisted.

The other item hasn't seemed to get much notice around here, though perhaps it should. Duncan Hunter has slipped into The National Defense Authorization Act of 2007 a sweet little gift for his Evangelical buddies.

But the defense bill is being held up by a number of disagreements between the House and the Senate. Among them is a particularly inappropriate provision, inserted into the House version of the bill by Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif. -- head of the House Armed Forces Committee -- that would break with tradition and allow military chaplains to say sectarian prayers at official gatherings.

Isn't that so nice of him? Letting those chaplains preach and proselytize to their heart's content. After all, they're only following their dominionist agenda, attempting to takeover the Military. It isn't the dreaded nanny state liberals who keep trying to turn such bastions of filth and depravity (And I hope to hell they never change!) as the Navy and Marine Corps into the Boy Scouts, it's the Evangelicals. They want Holy Warriors who will do their bidding.

The measure has been championed by evangelical Christian groups such as Focus on the Family. "Chaplains take their orders on prayer from a much higher authority than their commanding officer," said one minister. But the provision is opposed by a wide range of heavyweights, from the Defense Department to powerful Sen. John Warner, R-Va., (the Senate sponsor of the bill) to the Baptist Joint Committee, the Episcopal Church and the American Jewish Congress.

They don't just want Chaplains to take their orders from a much higher authority, they want to control every last servicemember, and Duncan Hunter's happily going along with that insanity. Even though the Defense Department doesn't want to be subject to this social engineering, possibly even less than they want to allow openly homosexual people to serve.

What I can't figure out, is with all this obvious, open hostility towards the military, why anyone in America still thinks Duncan Hunter's a supporter of said institution. He opposes them on issue after issue, from forcing unwanted contracts onto them, to forcing them to be subjected to the insanity of dominionists, to telling the Army who can and can't be in combat, to detainee treatment.

Fortunately, it is an election year, and Duncan Hunter does have an opponent. One who is uniquely suited to hammer him on at least the evangelical pandering. John Rinaldi, at one time a chaplain in the United States Navy. A progressive, pro-labor, supporter of stem cell research, who also has some good political cartoons on his site.

Duncan Hunter too often seems unbeatable, it's a gerrymandered district, in what is thought of as a very red part of California. I'm not sure how exactly he can be beaten, but I'm really sick of nobody even putting up a fight.

Originally posted to Hannibal on Thu Sep 21, 2006 at 09:53 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    Comments, suggestions, insults, and inappropriate offers appreciated. I just hope John Rinaldi knows the power of Low Rider.

    Republicans are all a bunch of crybabies!

    by Hannibal on Thu Sep 21, 2006 at 09:55:44 AM PDT

    •  I had to laugh (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      when I saw the title of this diary. My first thought was "The sky is blue and water is wet." I've always thought we should have a contest to see who has the worst representative you all down in the 52nd or us up in the 50th. It used to be that would have been a hard fought contest but now I'm not so sure. Bilbray is a friggin' amateur when compared to Randy Duke who was a real complement to Duncan the dumbass. Sheesh

      Good luck to Rinaldi, I hope he has better luck and more success than Busby.

  •  Praying for the prey (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I heard John Warner (R-VA)discuss this on the Senate floor yesterday on C-SPAN.
    The provision that made him not want to move forward immediately was the part about the chaplains.
    The provision states the chaplains can lead prayers of any demonination or any that fits as a military neccessity. WTF is that?

    Is the act of praying even in the Army Field Manual?

    Exit the donkey, Enter the dragon!

    by OCMIHOP on Thu Sep 21, 2006 at 10:08:19 AM PDT

    •  It's part of the Evangelicals' plan (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Predator Saint, SeekCa

      They've been trying to take over the military, as well as every other aspect of government, for some time now. Fortunately, they keep getting into trouble with it, as the military's pretty resistant to being told how to do their business, and how they should behave, already enough rules for them in that regard.

      Republicans are all a bunch of crybabies!

      by Hannibal on Thu Sep 21, 2006 at 10:17:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Evangelicals and the military (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        "They've been trying to take over the military"

        I just read recently an article that mentioned the very same thing--but this article was referring to the Air Force--specifically the Air Force Academy in Colorado. Seems that a lot of evangelicals and their churches pop up around military schools and bases.

  •  Jesus W.T.F. Christ! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    We won't be satisfied until our military uniforms like like this:

    "Hell, I'll say it, gimme that fuckin' microphone!!" (imaginary Keith Olbermann quote)

    by Detroit Mark on Thu Sep 21, 2006 at 10:19:46 AM PDT

  •  go Rinaldi ! beat Hunter ! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    oh, even though this race is only on a few people's radar, I think it's a sleeper.

    For one thing, John Rinaldi is an outstanding candidate.

    His 20-point list of key issues :

    But big dreams carry with them big responsibilities.  Help me take your voice to Washington by contributing and take the 20/20 for the 21st Pledge!

    As we challenge ourselves to realize the dream of taking back the Congress in November, I pledge to give everything I can to win the 52nd. I ask you to challenge yourself, take the Pledge and contribute $20: $

      1. Economic Dignity for All Americans.
      2. Ethical Leadership
      3. Open Government
      4. Reproductive Freedom
      5. True Security & Not Unnecessary Wars
      6. Universal Access to Education
      7. Universal Access to Health Care
      8. Every Vote Counts and Count Every Vote
      9. Right to Privacy
     10. Marriage Equality
     11. Equal Opportunity and Access
     12. Free Speech & Assembly
     13. Fiscal Responsibility
     14. Energy Independency Through Renewable Energy
     15. Equal Pay for Equal Work
     16. Freedom to Serve
     17. Honoring Commitments to Veterans & Their Families
     18. Freedom from Violence
     19. Protections of Separation of Church & State
     20. Protecting the Environment

    is just about the best statement of a core-values Democratic platform I've ever seen.

    The other factor is that even though Hunter has raised an obscene amount of money, he's already spent most of it. His Cash on Hand advantage as of the last filing was not insurmountable.  

    I think this race can be won. I put Rinaldi on my ActBlue page at

    and I now consider it one of my ten top federal races for the 2006 cycle. Great Democrat, terrible Republican. A district worth fighting for.

  •  ps edit your header (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If you want this diary picked up in the round-up of diaries of special electoral interest, it will attract the attention of the compiler more easily if you start the diary header with "CA-52". That helps them find appropriate postings.

  •  more support for Rinaldi's campaign (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    By the way, mine is not the only ActBlue page supporting Rinaldi. Carl Manaster, of 'My Daily Donation' fame, also features Rinaldi, at:

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