Hugo Chavez, Venezuela
If Chavez bans peaceful protests against his government, he will have crossed a line he should not have. Have the protests been peaceful? The mainstream media in the U.S. hasn't said it one way or the other that I'm aware of.
Rafael Correa, Ecuador
Meanwhile, the mainstream media in the U.S. is complaining that Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa is call for shutting down Teleamazonas, a private TV station, for broadcasting secretly recorded conversations in Correa's presidential office. That's strange. If a TV network were caught doing that to Barack Obama or George W. Bush in the Oval Office, heads would roll. The only way such a thing could ever be acceptable under the U.S. Constitution would be if Obama were caught in a high crime. Was Correa caught in a high crime? The reports certainly haven't alleged it. I take it as negative propaganda without substance. It's just the rich privatizers who want to own everything, including the very air and the people themselves as slaves, doing their worst against Correa, who cares more for the poor and indigenous peoples who have been trampled upon by the greedy.
Correa has also been criticized for calling upon Ecuadorian TV to stop showing Laura Bozzo's show. That's strange too since Laura Bozzo has been roundly charged and convicted of showing fraudulent shows as fact. She routinely got family members and others to fight on her show. It was apparently all staged, but she didn't inform the audience. The show was and still is considered raunchy. Correa simply said it is a piece of junk that shouldn't be on the air in Ecuador. It was immediately removed. It's been banned in Peru and Spain and perhaps elsewhere. Well, the governments she criticized were far from saintly, but apparently it is legal to set decency and honesty standards on the air in Ecuador. If they don't want fake family fights over raunchy sexual issues, that's their choice. Personally, I think people who watch such stuff are being dumber than doornails, but they'd probably just call me a snob or something worse like a Christian or Jesus follower.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran
What's this? The big, bad Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has nominated three women to his cabinet. That's never happened before in Revolutionary Iran. He's taking plenty of heat for it too from the "conservative" top Islamic clerics there. You know, many people in the West will accuse him of faking it, but he's not faking it. He's really a Populist in Iranian terms. All the eggheads over in the West think he's a faker. He's vastly better than they think, although I'm not saying he's perfect. The West though could really work with him as a partner and bring him along and be brought along if they would just stop all the stupid saber rattling. Ahmadinejad makes a whole lot more sense than does Netanyahu for instance. I'd trust a deal with Ahmadinejad before one with Netanyahu any day of the week. Ahmadinejad makes the hardliners mad. Netanyahu is the hardliners hero, next to the all-out fascist Avigdor Lieberman that is.
What's more, Iran has sacked the head prosecutor, Saeed Mortazavi, in what has been called a mass show trial of dissidents over the recent presidential elections.
It is widely believed that Saeed Mortazavi overstepped in treatment of detainees, which may very well be the case. Those charges still remain unsubstantiated allegations to my knowledge. Whether or not the allegations are overblown and even outright lies by the ruling elite's opposition remains to be seen. Perhaps it won't come out without direct, huge spiritual intervention.
My, my, Iran is putting the U.S. and Israel to shame in many ways by showing itself capable of seeking some measure of justice while the U.S. and Israel bad mouth Iran as if Iranians are worthless (unless they are out on the streets protesting, even violently, which many did).
I'm not saying no one in the U.S. or Israel seeks mundane justice. Many in the U.S. government are advocating for a full airing of the George W. Bush administration, and the justice system in Israel has indicted former Prime Minister Olmert and has prosecuted many other high officials for crimes. They are still considering whether to indict Avigdor Lieberman too.
Hamid Karzai, Richard Holbrooke, and Afghanistan
As for what's happening in Afghanistan, the U.S. government became angry with Karzai when he stopped being enough of a yes man. You don't really think you're getting the truth from signals from Richard Holbrooke do you? Try twisting what he says 180 degrees this time. Holbrooke is buddy-buddy with Big Oil (Chevron the Amazon huge polluter trying to get out of paying the Ecuadorian indigenous peoples for all the trouble Chevron caused). He's mixed signals all over the place. The U.S. is flip-flopping on poppies (huge profits within the Empire for the plutocrat money launderers) and other things all in the furtherance of raw imperialism. Karzai isn't getting cut any slack from the mainstream media in the U.S. The moment they're told to turn up the heat, they will. Everything up to now has just been setting the stage so the U.S. can put in a more compliant, pro-U.S., personal-payoffs, ruthless puppet.
All the talk about Hamid Karzai is as if all the hard evidence has already all been rolled out for the general public around the world to see and to evaluate. Wait until the evaluations of the voting results have been completed. Then realize still that the enemies of Karzai could salt the election and then point the finger at Karzai. Has no one ever heard of a frame-up? Evidence has to be tied to the accused you know. I'm not saying Karzai is clean. I'm just saying the U.S. is dirtier.
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)