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Many of you have heard by now that Bay Bridge, one of the nation's busiest commuter bridges which links Oakland and San Francisco has been closed indefinitely due to the collapse of a bracket last night.

Traffic is snarled, commuters are angry, taxpayers are fuming and questions are being asked about how we got into this mess.  One columnist suggests that the shoddy workmanship that led to this failure is a symptom of the "Outsourcing, free trade and globalization" which are the "the hallmarks of the Reagan, Bush I, Bush II and the Clinton administrations."

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According to the Legal Newswire:

A bipartisan group of 91 former state attorneys general are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear an appeal by former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman.

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Does the list of stupidity of the Bush administration policies never end?  Just when you think you have heard of the most bone-headed policy, another even bonier-headed policy is exposed.  Now it appears that the Pentagon has been including Bible quotes for its daily briefings, as if the Iraq War into some sort of Christian Crusade.

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According to the AP, Obama has a shortlist with 6 potential SCOTUS nominees

Among those under consideration are California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno, Solicitor General Elena Kagan, Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and U.S. Appeals Court judges Sonia Sotomayor and Diane Pamela Wood.

Apparently, the source says "other" candidates are also being considered.

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Tue May 12, 2009 at 01:52 PM PDT

Roe v. Wade hangs in the balance

by zdefender

Obama is about to name a replacement for Justice Souter. There is some talk about picking a politician, maybe Salazar, Granholm, Klobuchar.  There are some who are looking at demographics, eg. Judge Sotomayor.  

All I have to say is be careful.  

There are currently 4 votes on the court to overturn Roe v. Wade.  There is no room for error.

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It's the Supreme Court stupid!  One cry heard over and over again in 2004, and 2008.  We lost 2004 and got Alito and Roberts.  Now that we won, what do we do?

The recent call is for a "practical political person"

That is a bad idea.

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I saw this piece regarding an apology by one of the men who beat and tormented John Lewis during the civil rights struggles.  

Elwin Wilson was an unabashed racist, the sort who once hung a black doll from a noose outside his home. John Lewis was a young civil rights leader bent on changing laws, if not hearts and minds, even if it cost him his life.

They faced each other at a South Carolina bus station during a protest in 1961. Wilson joined a white gang that jeered Lewis, attacked him and left him bloodied on the ground.

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Thus far the Republicans are threatening to fight if not filibuster the stimulus.  I say we should turn some of the Republican 9/11 frames into banking collapse/depression frames, and use them as effectively as the Republicans used 9/11 to justify everything.  Here are few I've come up with, add your own in the comments.

"The banking collapse changed everything."

"2008 changed everything."

"Republicans are operating with a pre-2008 mindset"

"The Republicans don't want to fight the war on recession."

"The Republicans don't want to win economic recovery."


Sun Dec 28, 2008 at 05:20 PM PST

Did Bush Approve Marc Rich's Pardon?

by zdefender

As we know, Bush recently pardoned Isaac Robert Toussie whose family had donated heavily to Republicans and whose crime is linked to the mortgage meltdown. After all the bad publicity, Bush invoked his "power" to "revoke" that pardon.

There is a debate about whether this power to revoke a pardon exists. Apparently, there is some precedent for it.

But the more interesting point is that Bush believes that it exists.  Since Bush believes he has the authority to revoke a pardon, at least a recent one.  Bush must necessarily believe that he thus had the authority to revoke Clinton's last minute pardons.  If so, he must believe he had the authority to undo the Marc Rich pardon which the Repubs are dragging back into the news.

Can Bush's failure to revoke the Rich pardon, be spun into a tacit approval of the pardon?


I am a biased.  I am a criminal defense attorney who has watched in horror as the California Supreme Court has affirmed 99% of criminal cases it reviews each year for the past 20 years, making it tougher and tougher to defend accused citizens.  I am also pro gay marriage, and  opposed Prop. 8 (both of them, as you will see below), and raised funds against the anti-gay marriage initiative.

To understand the link between the two, you need an off-the-cuff California legal/political history.

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Tue Nov 04, 2008 at 02:40 PM PST

I voted for my dad today

by zdefender

I voted for my dad today although it has been 3 years since he passed away.  White and Jewish, he made his field the emancipation of slaves in the U.S., and taught college students "Negro History," "Black History," and later "African-American History" from the 60's until his death.  At the time he started in the field, there weren't very many African-American PhD's.  At his funeral, countless students, white and black spoke about how he inspired them.  He would have loved to vote for Obama.

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I'm getting a little tired of Democrats getting flustered by the question "isn't Obama a socialist/Marxist because he said he wants to spread the wealth?"

Jed L has a story up about Barbara West's interview of Biden.  She asks about Obama's "spread the wealth" statement and quotes Marx "from each according to his ability to each according to her need."

The best answer to these questions is that it doesn't come from Marx, it comes from the Bible:

To whom much is given, much will be required.
Luke 12:48

Bush quoted this same passage in an interview with the BBC in February.

Someone please tell Obama, Biden and all the surrogates to get this answer down:

"It comes from the Bible, next question."

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