Watchdog group blasts Congress: Affirming ‘In God We Trust’ won’t create jobs

Because we have to pander to ignorant right wing morons who believe in imaginary invisible sky gods…

From Raw Story:

By Eric W. Dolan
Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The watchdog group Americans United for Separation of Church and State on Tuesday accused Congress of wasting time by voting on a resolution to affirm the phrase “In God We Trust” as the nation’s official motto.

“The American people want action on jobs and the economy, yet this Congress continues to waste time pandering to the Religious Right,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “This meaningless, purely symbolic vote won’t create one job, help one family struggling to pay its mortgage or rebuild one piece of infrastructure.”

“I think we know by now that this Congress likes God. Can we move on?” he added.

 The House of Representatives easily passed the resolution by a vote of 396 to 9 on Tuesday.

Rep. Randy Forbes (R-VA), the founder and chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, sponsored the legislation. It would encourage the public display of the motto in all public buildings, public schools and government institutions.

Forbes said he introduced the bill in January because he was troubled by a pattern of omitting God from the nation’s heritage.

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Going to Pot Songs Celebrating the Mind Expanding Weed

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General Strike in Oakland

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The People versus the Police

From Project Syndicate:

By Naomi Wolf

The People versus the Police

NEW YORK – America’s politicians, it seems, have had their fill of democracy. Across the country, police, acting under orders from local officials, are breaking up protest encampments set up by supporters of the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement – sometimes with shocking and utterly gratuitous violence.

In the worst incident so far, hundreds of police, dressed in riot gear, surrounded Occupy Oakland’s encampment and fired rubber bullets (which can be fatal), flash grenades, and tear-gas canisters – with some officers taking aim directly at demonstrators. The Occupy Oakland Twitter feed read like a report from Cairo’s Tahrir Square: “they are surrounding us”; “hundreds and hundreds of police”; “there are armored vehicles and Hummers.” There were 170 arrests.

My own recent arrest, while obeying the terms of a permit and standing peacefully on a street in lower Manhattan, brought the reality of this crackdown close to home. America is waking up to what was built while it slept: private companies have hired away its police (JPMorgan Chase gave $4.6 million to the New York City Police Foundation); the federal Department of Homeland Security has given small municipal police forces military-grade weapons systems; citizens’ rights to freedom of speech and assembly have been stealthily undermined by opaque permit requirements.

Suddenly, America looks like the rest of the furious, protesting, not-completely-free world. Indeed, most commentators have not fully grasped that a world war is occurring. But it is unlike any previous war in human history: for the first time, people around the world are not identifying and organizing themselves along national or religious lines, but rather in terms of a global consciousness and demands for a peaceful life, a sustainable future, economic justice, and basic democracy. Their enemy is a global “corporatocracy” that has purchased governments and legislatures, created its own armed enforcers, engaged in systemic economic fraud, and plundered treasuries and ecosystems.

Around the world, peaceful protesters are being demonized for being disruptive. But democracy is disruptive. Martin Luther King, Jr., argued that peaceful disruption of “business as usual” is healthy, because it exposes buried injustice, which can then be addressed. Protesters ideally should dedicate themselves to disciplined, nonviolent disruption in this spirit – especially disruption of traffic. This serves to keep provocateurs at bay, while highlighting the unjust militarization of the police response.

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Why YOU should join the worldwide Occupy Wall Street movement

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Catholic Bishops’ ‘Marriage Guy’ Says Satan Makes People Gay

File this under Reasons not to believe in religion or god and did they really fucking say that.

From Right Wing Watch:

Submitted by Peter Montgomery
October 31, 2011

Daniel Avila is the self-described “marriage guy” for the Catholic bishops.  More formally, he is the policy advisor for marriage and family to the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage. He thinks people are gay because Satan was messing around with them while they were in their mothers’ wombs. God, he says, has nothing to do with it.

Therefore, whenever natural causes disturb otherwise typical biological development, leading to the personally unchosen beginnings of same-sex attraction, the ultimate responsibility, on a theological level, is and should be imputed to the evil one, not God.

Writing in The Pilot, the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Boston, Avila cites one scientist’s theory that homosexual orientation is the result of fluctuations in maternal hormones. To that thesis, he adds a gigantic leap: the devil must be doing it.

In other words, the scientific evidence of how same-sex attraction most likely may be created provides a credible basis for a spiritual explanation that indicts the devil. Any time natural disasters occur, we as people of faith look back to Scripture’s account of those angels who rebelled and fell from grace. In their anger against God, these malcontents prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. They continue to do all they can to mar, distort and destroy God’s handiwork.
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Occupy Oakland Calls for a November 2 General Strike

From The Nation:

November 1, 2011  

The details are familiar to many by now.

On October 10, hundreds of members of Occupy Oakland descended on downtown to take over Frank Ogawa Plaza. Twelve days later, occupiers marched through the city in their first action. Then, in the pre-dawn hours of October 25, Oakland police—aided by officers from seventeen other agencies—raided the camp, employing tear gas and flash-bang grenades. That afternoon a protest rally and march was held, leading to a violent nighttime confrontation with the police in which Scott Olsen, an Iraq war veteran, was hit in the head with a projectile and suffered a skull fracture. The following night an overflow crowd filled the plaza, with nearly 1,500 voting to hold a general strike on November 2. In the words of a widely circulated flyer, “All banks and corporations must close down for the day or we will march on them.”

To review: in less than two weeks, Occupy Oakland went from its first public action to calling for a city-wide general strike. That’s one hell of an escalation. In my previous life as a community organizer, our campaigns were launched with the understanding that they would be long, drawn-out affairs—weeks of door-knocking, the initial meeting, our first collective action—with the butcher paper taped to the walls measuring the progression in months.

So what accounts for the breathtaking speed of the events in Oakland? The sketchy record of the Oakland Police certainly deserves some credit, especially with the injured Olsen and the video footage showing an officer tossing a flash-bang grenade into a crowd of people trying to help him. And then there’s Mayor Jean Quan, who has also been a key if unwitting ally. Absent during the raid, she has attempted to explain her shifting positions with remarkable incoherence, and was recently booed when attempting to speak at a general assembly. At meetings of Occupy Oakland, many of the people I spoke with watched the unfolding occupation with sympathy—but just watched. It took the raid, the images of tear gas clouds and a bloodied Scott Olsen to get them into the streets. As Saul Alinsky wrote, all action is in the reaction. A former organizer, Quan will not soon forget that axiom.

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