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Potpourri

Ernest Cassara


"Activist Judges"

Republican politicians have been prattling on of late on the need to appoint judges who will "interpret the law" and "not make it."  According to these Solons, among the sinners are the justices of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, who found that the constitution of the Commonwealth - to a great extent the product of John Adams - would be violated if same sex couples were not allowed the same privilege as heterosexual couples to marry.  In other words, equal rights.

Of course, not all the actions of "activist judges" are condemned by these folks.  Did not hear a peep from them, when a majority of the U.S. Supreme Court interfered in the  counting of the vote in Florida in the election of 2000 and appointed George W. Bush president.


Use of "Ass"

A correspondent has speculated that it was George Herbert Walker Bush who initiated the use of the term "ass" in polite company.  In the campaign of 1984, Bush debated Geraldine Ferraro, who was running against him for the vice presidency in the contest between Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale.  When the television debate between Bush and Ferraro concluded, Bush was heard to say that he had "kicked a little ass" that night.

I have no reason to doubt my correspondent, unless one of you comes up with a more likely explanation of when the verboten word became acceptable in polite company.


What President Ahmadinejad Actually Said

I try to keep up with the news, but, I must admit that it was not until I read a column by Gene Lyons, reprinted from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette of the 6th of June in the excellent Liberal Opinion Week, that I learned that Professor Juan Cole, of the University of Michigan, in his web site, Informed Comment, had pointed out that President Ahmadinejad of Iran did not threaten Israel, as the New York Times translation of his letter to President Bush stated.  Rather, as Lyons wrote, "What Ahmadinejad actually said was closer in spirit to 'keep the faith' than 'we will bury you.'  He compared the Palestinians' struggle to the late Ayatollah Khomeni's determination to overthrow the Shah of Iran.

"Here's Cole's translation: 'The Imam said that this regime occupying Jerusalem must (vanish from) the page of time.'  It's not a threat; it's more of a reminder that the Israeli regime could go the way of the Shah's."


Flag Waving

"I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the
house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth." (Second Book of Moses: Exodus, chapter 20)

Except, of course, for the American Flag!


Is Stephen Colbert Funny?

At the White House Correspondent's dinner, 29 April 2006, Stephen Colbert said, among other things:

Here's how it works: The president makes decisions.  He's the decider.  The press secretary
announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down.  Make,
announce, type.  Just put 'em through a spell check and go home.  Get to know your family
again.  Make love to your wife.  Write that novel you got kicking around in your head.  You
know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the
administration.  You know - fiction!

Those of us who watch the "Colbert Report," following Jon Stewart's "Daily Show," on comedy Central, can appreciate the biting nature of these words.  But, not some of the reporters present.  According to Extra! Update, The Newsletter of FAIR - The Media Watch Group, the greater number of news stories about the event applauded President Bush's parody of himself, but did not appreciate Colbert's remarks!  Surprise!


Israel's Excess in Gaza

In searching for the Israeli soldier who was taken away from his post by militants, Israel plunged 700,000 Palestinians into darkness, by bombing the power station.  It, also, supplies current for the operation of water and sewage systems.

The Israeli air force, also, bombed three bridges.  Then, it was reported that the Israeli forces are arresting Palestinian legislators, in Gaza and the West Bank.

Yet, the United States government spokesman said that "Israel has a right to defend itself."

Israeli leaders apparently get a perverse pleasure out of destroying the infrastructure of the Palestinians.  This is merely the latest example.  Several years back, when I visited Gaza and the West Bank, I snapped a number of photos, some of which recorded the destruction visited on the Palestinians by their Israeli captors.  You may look at some of them on this web page: http://hometown.aol.com/uujmeboston/Views-2.html

(By the way, the ads at the top of the page are the sole responsibility of AOL, which takes the opportunity to fill every available inch with its advertising.)



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