George W. Bush isn't trustworthy. I don't trust him. When he says to just trust him or to trust his underlings about those the neocons are holding in prisons around the world, I don't follow his orders. I reject them. I say, show me the proof that those people have done anything to merit such reprehensible treatment.
Sure, no one is entirely free of having committed errors that offend God's perfection, but that doesn't excuse being a savage animal toward them.
To Hell with secret courts and the 1977 International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
Those things need to be repealed, the sooner the better.
Blacklisted by the Bush government
Spying on Americans without warrants, charges based on secret evidence, a small town divided by fear. Welcome to the world of Bush's "specially designated global terrorists."
By Tim Shorrock
May. 19, 2008
...the Bush administration has regularly withheld what it claims is key evidence against those accused — insisting, essentially, that the public accept without question its private conclusions about the suspects' guilt.
"You can be designated without an evidentiary finding that you ever actively engaged in or supported terrorism," says Cole [David Cole, a professor of constitutional law at Georgetown University]. "This is a guilt-by-association process."
the 1977 International Emergency Economic Powers Act. Passed by Congress to set guidelines for economic sanctions and trade embargoes, the act gave the president wide powers to deal with any "unusual and extraordinary threat" from abroad by confiscating property and prohibiting financial transactions with specific countries contributing to that threat.
The powers were first used against individuals by President Clinton, when his National Security Council designated several Palestinian and Israeli opponents of the Camp David agreements as terrorist supporters. Later, use of the tactic expanded greatly under President George W. Bush.
In the days after 9/11, Bush signed an executive order giving the Treasury Department the power to blacklist individuals and organizations believed to be supporters of or "associated with" terrorists. The order specifically gave Treasury the power to blacklist and freeze the assets of people in the United States entitled to rights under the Constitution — even before those people are accused of any crime. The dangers of the process were noted in 2004 by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, better known as the 9/11 Commission. Using the 1977 law against domestic organizations, the commission warned in a 2004 report on terrorist financing, "raises significant civil liberty concerns because it allows the government to shut down an organization on the basis of classified evidence, subject only to a deferential after-the-fact judicial review." That proved to be a prescient concern.
For those caught up in it, the designation process is a legal nightmare. David Cole and other lawyers who focus on the problem say there is no clear procedure for appealing the terrorist designation, let alone getting removed from the blacklist. Moreover, nowhere in the 1977 law or the Bush administration's post-9/11 counterterrorism edicts is the term "specially designated global terrorist" defined. ...there are no standards for what constitutes a "specially designated global terrorist"....
"Of course this is a human rights issue. Due process — the right to be told why the government is taking action against you, and to have an opportunity to defend yourself — is about a basic a human right as there is." [David Cole]
The following should appear at the end of every post:
According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":
Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.
Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.
Political Campaign Intervention
Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.
Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.
Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:
- Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
- Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
- Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
- Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
- Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office
Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:
- The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
- Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
- We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
- When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
- It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
- We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
- We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
- When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
- We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
- It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.
And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)