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  1. Please note that the grounds for discharge of members of the Armed Forces of the USA are established by Law, by the US Congress and the military must follow the Law. Under President Clinton the "Don't ask, don't tell" doctrine was devised and passed into Law by Act of Congress and the discharge of homosexuals is required by the provisions of that Law. Unless and until the Congress takes action to amend that Law, such discharges are mandated. The military is unable to waive the provisions of the Law. Note the best case scenario is a General or Medical discharge which are not the same as an Honorable Discharge.
  2. This issue, the seperation of church and state, is highly devisive in America today. Often throughout our history issues such as this have grown to the point that they become a defining issue for Americans. We are approaching such a point today, in the opinion of many conservatives like myself. Many believe that in our quest to protect that minority who are not believers, we have run rough-shod over the majority who have a faith. A little history is necessary: those who took part in the colonial revolution were people of faith who knew that many of their ancestors had fled to America to escape religious persecution - mainly from the "Church of England". That church was an arm of the state, of the king and those who founded America knew the history of religious persecution in England. They were also well aware of the fact that Catholicism was the State religion in most (if not all) Countries of Europe. It was their intent in their design for America to prevent what they believed to be the abuse which followed the establishment of a "State" religion. When the Bill of Rights was adopted, religion was one of the most important freedoms and that principle was stated in the first amendment of that Bill of Rights. Note: The underline added by this writer.I have been watching quite closely and I have not seen the underlined section mentioned or printed in the liberal media in any discussion of the issue of seperation of church and state. Neither, to my knowledge, has the underlined section been the subject of interpretation by the US Supreme Court as to its meaning. Many believe the original intent of the framers of the Constitution was to prevent the adoption of a "State" religion and confirm the right of inhabitants to the free exercise of any faith. There has been a great deal of emphasis over these last twenty years or so to ban or forbid any convergence between a religious activity and any activity of the State; posting of the Ten Commandments or display of a Nativity scene on property of the State, down to the lowest city or town level, has been banned on the theory that such actions are a violation of the establishment clause. It has reached a point that recently, a California higher Court held that the words "under God" were improperly part of the Pledge of Allegiance. This decision created a firestorm across America and the US Congress (both the House of Representatives and the Senate) swiftly issued a joint statement reaffirming that "under God" was properly and appropriately part of the Pledge. While such a statement had no legal effect upon the Court decision, it was a clear statement that the Court had gone too far and the Court wisely recalled the case and reversed its prior opinion on procedural grounds overlooked in its first decision. The self-proclaimed atheist who filed the Pledge case recently filed a case to prohibit President Bush from giving the Presidential Oath upon a bible. The case was filed too late, in the ordinary course of events, to be scheduled for a hearing prior to the inauguration. Note that there are references in the Constitution to being under "Oath or Affirmation" so it would appear that the case has little merit. This issue of funds to faith based charities is but one battle in a religious war being fought within America and the above is provided to increase understanding of this contentious issue. In his first campaign for President one of the issues raised by then candidate Bush was that a great deal of money was being allocated to programs which duplicated the actions of faith based charities and when these government programs were evaluated for effectiveness, they were in no way as successful as those of the faith based groups. He pledged to create a process where funds were to be allocated to such faith based groups who had proved to have a successful program. In the current matter, this is a Federal Grant program where applicants must provide proof that they have an effective program plus who they are, etc. and their expending of the funds is subject to standard federal rules for grant funds plus federal audit procedures. They are unable to use these funds to proselitize for their religion of for any use except that specified in their grant. As Black Dog suggested, these groups are screened by their grant applications and it's not a matter of payoff for political support but rather an acknowledgement that they get more bang for the buck in such programs.
  3. Exactly how do you think these State Court Judges are going to establish jurisdiction over these defendants?
  4. This is not a place to post fantasy. Provide a source, name the Court or cease and desist with such stupidity! The Constitution provides the only legal method to remove a President from office.
  5. As long as Arafat and his gunmen control the Palestinians there can be no road map to anywhere. If, as and when he is removed (one way or another) a possibility exists for progress. What ever the merits of their cause, they are negated by terrorist acts and until these cease, there can be no rewards, no peace, no settlements. Rabid dogs are put down, not petted!
  6. Hello, Tool, welcome to the Forum. You pose a very thought provoking question! I believe the answer to your question is America and the reason for my belief is "Freedom". Individual freedom, I believe is the key to this question. No other system to date has provided individuals with the personal freedom to be the best they can - to make of themselves and their talents whatever they can achieve and to keep the most of that achievement for themselves and family. Individual success can make a country great and I believe that is America's secret!
  7. To claim that this was a "democratically elected Government" is absurd. Both the Carter Center and the OAS alleged massive fraud in the last election. Everyone turned off International Aid as they were unwilling to fund this government which became no better than those which preceded it. US aid funds were sequestered; i.e., while authorized, they were withheld for appropriate cause. With the departure of Aristede (?) some funds were released by the US and other Nations will or have followed suit. Years ago, Clinton listened to the Democratic Black Caucus and put Aristede back in power by force with results quite obvious - note that Rangle (D-NY) wanted Bush to do the same thing. What would you have America do? Stand by and watch this turn into another Liberia - althou it wasn't too far from that situation! US Marines have been sent in to keep a lid on things until Canada and other UN participants can pull it all together and take over as peacekeepers. Do you object to that? Again, what would you have America do - if we do nothing (see Liberia) you damn us and when we try to hold things together until the UN or someone else arrives, you also damn us. Heads we loose, tails you win!
  8. Hello, D4DEV - may I ask that you repost on this topic and make your points with a few quotes from the article. This is an important topic and needs discussion. What should the US do about Pakistan? How far has "Johnny Appleseed" Khan spread nuclear knowledge? Should the US bring down the President and gamble that the fanatics of the ISI will not take power? Should Pakistan and India be forced to surrender their nuclear weapons? It appears that the US has knowledge of all "known" Pakistan Nukes and has forced adoption of Command and Control measures to insure that they can not be used without release from the Presidents Office. Is this sufficient or should these weapons be seized under threat of nuclear attack? The Pakistan situation illustrates the danger of Islamic Nuclear weaponry; can Iran and others be allowed to progress this far? Some hard choices must be made - what are your thoughts?
  9. Hello, NDP NEWBIE, exactly what is your point and how does it relate to the topic under discussion? Each of the United States sets qualifications for Voter enfranchisement. In a number of States, conviction of a Felony results in disenfranchisement - your right to vote is rescinded. The Federal Government has nothing to do with these qualifications - this is not a matter of equal rights or discrimination based upon race, creed, etc.. I presume that the Provinces of Canada have something similar but please correct me if I am mistaken. Your 'beef', if I may call it that, appears to be with Statutes governing Marijuana usage and while that is a legitimate topic for discussion, it has no relevance on the topic of "Is Bush Finished".
  10. Issuance of a Marriage License is strictly a "State" function. The Federal Government has no jurisdiction in this area. The Mayor of San Francisco is acting against clear California Law and is, no doubt, guilty of Misprison of Office but any prosecution is the primary responsibility of the State of California. Note that as the issuance is 'illegal', any subsequent "marriage" may well be judged as 'invalid' (depending upon Cali Law) and at a minimum, will be used as a basis for denial of "Full Faith and Credit" in other jurisdictions should attempts be made to claim a legal relationship exists.
  11. I get amused when I read a variety of opinions on George Bush - usually from non-Americans or from the 'Left' side of the political spectrum. Ignoring the politically motivated hatred (remember the Rabid Republican 'Impeach Clinton' movement) it seems that the opinions expressed have much to do with the simple fact that George Bush is not a "TV Personality", is not a public speaker, a Snake Oil Salesman or 'Slick Willie' ! For the last fifty years, with the coming of the TV Age, the Media has insisted that a 'Politician' must be photogenic and it is doubtful that an "Abe Lincoln" (not a pretty boy) would make it far in a photogenic contest. Fortunately, the Public has not always agreed with this Media opinion. We will never know how George Bush would have been judged as a President absent 9.11; perhaps he would have been a one-termer remembered as one unable to get anything thru a divided Congress. Or perhaps not but we will never know. With 9.11, a challenge was made of him and his response, based upon his individual strengths has been exceptional. I suggest you consider the following: 1) President Bush does not believe he is the smartest one in the White House or in America. With this lack of an oversized ego, he has been free to seek the best advice which can be found, at home and abroad, and chart a course based upon this advice consistent with his view on an appropriate direction for America in the World today, as he sees it. Political expediency has not been allowed to be a factor in the defense of America no matter how stupidly (Steel Tariffs) it has been exercised domestically. 2) His "Born Again Christianity" has imbued him with a world view and morality which can be simply expressed as a belief in "God, Home and Country". Despite the sneers of the Media and the Elite, the vast majority of Americans respond to this belief. 3) His "Focus" is strong and unlike his predecessor who could see six sides to every problem, he remembers his purpose is to drain the swamp of Islamic hatred. All in all, George Bush is no Carter or Clinton - thank God. Both were so intelligent and so involved in seeing every option, they were ineffectual when it came to tough decisions on National Security. Both were too smart for their own good or for the good of America. Give me a man with the courage of his convictions (convictions with which I agree) and the ability to make hard decisions consistent with his beliefs. George Bush is such a man and he continues to be misunderestimated by a great many people.
  12. I could care less about with whom someone else elects to sleep or live - the only sexuality I control is my own and that is as it should be. I am not a homophobe, I just don't care what anyone else does. While the State is involved (for historical reasons), marriage is a religious matter (for most) and has been defined for some six thousand years as the union of a man and a woman. This is not simply a matter of custom but is basic dogma for many churches. No one is going to use the State to force a change in our dogma or theology. If it is legal status they wish, a Civil Union seems appropriate, just leave our religions alone!
  13. Another Press source (which escapes me, at the moment) has identified the two who spoke to Novak as members of Vice President Cheney's staff. This entire matter has the substance of a political mud fight and it's highly unlikely that criminal charges could or will be brought against anyone. (1) For charges to be brought, it must be proven that those who made the disclosure knew of her undercover status, i.e., (2) People who work openly at the CIA do not normally have "covert" status. It seems clear that at one time, Ms. Palme did have covert status but after delivery of her child and a DX of Post Partum Depression, she was given an inside assignment. Which raises the question, should she have continued to be classified as "Covert" or was there an administrative error which left her in this status? All in all, this appears to be a very large mountain from a very small anthill. Given the nature of the accusations made, the White House had little choice but to treat this as a potential serious intelligence breach. They are well aware of the "Nixon" Rule - it's a cover up that kills you!
  14. If Vice President Cheney bows out, I believe President Bush has the character and the courage to select Condi Rice as his VP. She has not (to my knowledge) ever indicated if she would consider the position. She would pay a heavy price were she to do so as the Black political establishment is wedded to the Democratic 'spoils' system and she would be attacked (as was Judge Thomas) to prevent any movement of Black people to the Republican Party.
  15. Well, TP, instead of throwing around some rather serious allegations, why don't you identify the "citizens" of whom you speak? Two come to mind that fit that category but please identify those you have in mind. First, I remember one, captured abroad as a combatant (Saudi, I believe) who revealed he had been born in America but left as an infant. The other who comes to mind is Padilla, taken into custody upon landing in Chicago on an International flight. If these are the types of people to whom you refer and upon which you base your allegations, I think you are far off base. Your statements presume that "Terrorists" and "Armed Combatants" are Criminals entitled to be prosecuted under the American Criminal Justice System. I respectfully disagree. "Acts of War" differ from "Criminal Acts". In fact and in law. To further complicate the legal situation, Mr. Padilla was taken into custody at Immigration. It is settled Law (but little known) that until you pass Immigration and are "Admitted" in the U.S., you are in a legal "Limbo" and are not "in" the U.S.; the Bill of Rights does not apply, you can be strip searched, forced to submit to intrusive medical procedures and, in brief, subjected to a variety of treatment which would be clearly "Unconstitutional" were it to occur "in" America. This is a gray area in Constitutional Law and legal experts have debated these issues for many years. There are few hard and fast answers and the latest precedents date from WW II - some fifty years ago. I'm proud to be an American "Eagle" (which some define as a Hawk who carries a gun) and I suggest that while it is appropriate to be vigilant of our constitutional freedoms, it is a vast leap to presume that terrorists and terrorism are a "Criminal" matter which must be handled until our Criminal Justice System.
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