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Heads or tails? In the universe of political stenography all stupid ideas or concepts have the same value as anything else.

I noticed this little gem in Sunday’s Kansas City Star:

For Kansas Democrats, Parkinson gets another chance at bat


The Kansas City Star

…Brownback wasn’t saying how he would vote on Sebelius. He appeared to be opening the door to a “no” vote amid an anti-Sebelius backlash from anti-abortion groups…

…His struggle brought back memories of a similar difficult choice that former Democratic senator Jean Carnahan of Missouri confronted in 2001. That year, President George W. Bush nominated Missourian John Ashcroft, a Republican, for attorney general…

Sure let’s compare someone who was overwhelmingly re-elected by the voters of her state and was nominated for Secretary of Health and Human Services by a president who was elected by a strong majority to someone who lost a statewide re-election campaign and was nominated for Attorney General by a president who lost the popular vote and was anointed by the right in the aftermath of a controversial Supreme Court ruling. Yeah, that’s roughly equivalent.

The only things the two have in common are the right wingnut extremists who are inserting themselves into the process and that Kansas and Missouri share a border.

Struggle? Similar difficult choice? Please.

The usual suspects:

Anti-Abortion Activists Plan to Fight Sebelius’ Nomination for HHS

…By Sharon Kehnemui Liss


Monday, March 02, 2009…

…Anti-abortion activists are planning strong opposition to Kathleen Sebelius, President Obama’s pick for secretary of health and human services, saying the Kansas governor’s positions on abortion and her ties to a late-term abortion provider are too extreme for her to be in charge of America’s health care policy…

It’s fairly easy to find out who actually holds the “extremist position” on that particular issue. Let’s take a look back at John Ashcroft’s nomination:

Profile: John Ashcroft  

Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 November, 2004, 04:57 GMT…

..When he was nominated by President George W Bush, Democrats objected that a man with such firmly-held beliefs – he is pro-death penalty, anti-abortion, anti-gay rights, and opposed to gun control – was unsuitable to be the country’s “sheriff”…

And time showed us that he was indeed an extremist:

Justice Department Releases Bush Administration National Security Memos (3/2/2009)

Newly Released Legal Documents Responsive To ACLU Lawsuit


…NEW YORK – The Justice Department today released nine secret memos and opinions written by the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) that authorized some of the Bush administration’s unlawful national security policies, including a memo written by OLC lawyer John Yoo that argued the Fourth Amendment does not apply to military activities inside the United States. Some of the memos are responsive to American Civil Liberties Union lawsuits seeking OLC legal opinions and other government records.

In a recent letter to the Obama administration, the ACLU called on the OLC to release, at the earliest possible date, dozens of still-secret legal memos related to interrogation, detention, rendition, surveillance and other Bush administration policies…

Office of Legal Counsel Memoranda [pdf]

Memorandum Regarding Status of Certain OLC Opinions Issued in the Aftermath of the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001 (01-15-2009)

Memorandum Regarding Constitutionality of Amending Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to Change the “Purpose” Standard for Searches (09-25-2001)

Memorandum Regarding Authority for Use of Military Force to Combat Terrorist Activities within the United States (10-23-2001)

Memorandum Regarding Authority of the President to Suspend Certain Provisions of the ABM Treaty (11-15-2001)

Memorandum Regarding the President’s Power as Commander in Chief to Transfer Captured Terrorists to the Control and Custody of Foreign Nations (03-13-2002)

Memorandum Regarding Swift Justice Authorization Act (04-08-2002)

Memorandum Regarding Determination of Enemy Belligerency and Military Detention (06-08-2002)

Memorandum Regarding Applicability of 18 U.S.C. § 4001(a) to Military Detention of United States Citizens (06-27-2002)

Memorandum Regarding October 23, 2001 OLC Opinion Addressing the Domestic Use of Military Force to Combat Terrorist Activities (10-06-2008)

Due to public interest in this matter, the Department of Justice is releasing these documents in an inaccessible format. Accessible versions will be posted as soon as possible. If you have a disability and the format of any material on the site interferes with your ability to access some information, please email the Department of Justice webmaster at webmaster@usdoj.gov. To enable us to respond in a manner that will be of most help to you, please indicate the nature of the accessibility problem, your preferred format (electronic format (ASCII, etc.), standard print, large print, etc.), the web address of the requested material, and your full contact information so we can reach you if questions arise while fulfilling your request…

Remind me, who was Attorney General during dubya’s first term? You might notice that the right wingnuts who are rushing to go after the Sebelius nomination didn’t exactly line up to criticize John Ashcroft when his Justice Department was busily shredding the Constitution. Then, why would anyone expect them to do so? They’ve never shown that they really care about something like that.

Political stenography in old media must dictate false equivalence as a matter of course. It’s definitely time to convene another panel on blogger ethics.