First Cardinal

Here’s a picture of the first Cardinal I’ve seen out back this year.

Who Created the Anti-Immigrant Bill in AZ?

Southern Poverty Law Center has weighed in and added much more information to the puzzle of the new Arizona immigration law and I’m going to reprint a lot of it further below to back up my previous post on this subject.  In a forum the other day after my first post many argued that Kobach really didn’t help craft the bill — but now the evidence that he did is crystal clear.

I think the people trying to distance Kobach are vested in denying the connection due to his long association with a known and designated hate group (F.A.I.R.) Kobach also has associations with the Heritage Foundation, a right wing think tank that has sired other lobbyists and political operatives who skate the very thinnest borderlines of acceptability.

Kobach has spoken the past four years to any wingnut who will listen to stir the anti immigrant furor, from populist Lou Dobbs to Phylis Schafly’s far right religious fundamentalist group, Eagle Forum, and the list even includes Faux libertarians who operate in a wasteland of cognitive dissonance from actual liberty.. you know like freedom from invasive carrying of papers….  He’s a single issue operative who is trying to parlay fear of immigrants into a lucrative career. So far it seems to be working, as you can see from the article he’s no stranger to crafting legislation for the Tanton Nativist crowd.

He’s drafted other pieces of anti-immigrant legislation that have ended up in courts and cost the governments who were fooled a pretty penny in fees etc. (I’ll wager a nickle that Kris gets called in these cases as an “expert witness” although I don’t know that for certain.) The people of Arizona need to take their legislators to task for being such tools for a hate lobby since this is going to go down in the courts and cost Arizona some money when it’s all said and done. Kris Kobach’s Konstruction really hinges on the vagueness of a new concept of “lawful contact”  and how far zealots can stretch it. If you search google you can see that everyone is wondering what the hell the bill means by “Lawful Contact.”

Can the city librarian ask you for your papers? Your child’s principle? Both come into “lawful contact” with citizens of the US all day every day, and both are “City officials”. See how vague this is? It’s billed as “anti-immigrant” but it’s really anti-Freedom, anti-liberty, and it’s really crazy that purported Libertarians are supporting this.

UPDATE: Much more on FAIR at LGF

With all of that said here’s the meat from the SPLC Hatewatch article:

Kris Kobach, the author of the Arizona law and a lawyer at FAIR’s Immigration Reform Law Institute, has been the prime mover behind numerous ordinances that seek to punish those who aid and abet “illegal aliens,” including laws adopted in Farmer’s Branch, Texas, and Hazelton, Pa.

The laws have not done well and have cost some localities immense sums of money to defend. Recently, the city of Albertville, Ala., refused to work with Kobach on just such an ordinance, reportedly because of the high legal costs incurred by these other communities.

Before joining FAIR, Kobach served as U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft’s top immigration adviser. He then moved on to take charge of Department of Justice efforts to tighten border security after the 9/11 attacks. There, he developed a program — the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System — that called for close monitoring of men from Arab and Muslim nations, even legal U.S. residents. The program collapsed due to complaints of racial profiling and discrimination.

Given Kobach’s history with racial profiling, it is particularly alarming that he was tapped by Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio in February to train his officers. A federal grand jury investigation is under way amid a slew of complaints that Arpaio used racial profiling techniques to round up suspected undocumented immigrants. The grand jury is also reportedly looking at whether Arpaio used his office to target political opponents.

FAIR’s poison is now spreading. Legislation similar to Arizona’s has been introduced in Texas, and six other states are considering doing so.

It’s not surprising to find a group like FAIR behind this repugnant law. FAIR has an extensive track record of racism and bigotry. The group, for example, has accepted $1.2 million from the racist Pioneer Fund, a foundation established to promote the genes of white colonials and fund studies of race, intelligence and genetics. FAIR has employed key staffers who have also joined white supremacist groups; it has board members who write regularly for hate publications; it promotes racist conspiracy theories about Latino immigrants; and it has produced television programming featuring white nationalists.

FAIR has been dominated for much of its life by its racist founder and current board member, John Tanton, who has written that “for European-American society and culture to persist requires a European-American majority, and a clear one at that.” Tanton’s role model for FAIR is John Trevor Sr., founder of the racist American Coalition of Patriotic Societies and a key architect of the racially restrictive Immigration Act of 1924. Trevor also distributed pro-Nazi propaganda and warned shrilly of “diabolical Jewish control” of America. Tanton once said Trevor should serve as FAIR’s “guidepost to what we must follow again this time.”

FAIR’s president, Dan Stein, has warned that immigrants are engaged in “competitive breeding” aimed at diminishing white power. He led efforts to win funding from the Pioneer Fund, saying in 1993 that his “job [was] to get every dime of Pioneer’s money.” Stein also served as editorial adviser to Tanton’s hate journal, The Social Contract, at a time when it ran its ugliest edition ever, “Europhobia: The Hostility Toward European-Descended Americans.” The issue’s lead article argued that multiculturalism was replacing “successful Euro-American culture” with “dysfunctional Third World cultures.” Stein has declined to offer any criticism of FAIR’s founder, instead characterizing Tanton last September as a “Renaissance man.”

The principal sponsor of the Arizona law, state Sen. Russell Pearce, has his own history of hate. In 2006, Pearce forwarded an email to his supporters from the neo-Nazi National Alliance titled “Who Rules America?” The article criticized the media for promoting multiculturalism and racial equality, and for presenting the Holocaust as fact. More recently, Pearce has been photographed hugging J.T. Ready, a Phoenix-area resident who is a member of the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement.

AZ Immigration Bill: Kobach’s and Pearce’s Roots in White Supremacy

Rachel is not making this up, I’ve researched these groups and this background myself. If you need confirmation on Russell’s nativist and White Supremacist ties, you can reference the long history at The Feathered Bastard. (While Lemmons is definitely partisan and goes over the top sometimes, he is factually correct in the background to the articles and that’s really what matters.)

I’ve experience with seeing Kris Kobach speak myself – with coded anti-immigration nativist dog whistling in many speeches and his birtherism he’s not a mainstream Republican, he’s also fixated on Acorn and whatever the conspiracy outrage of the day is on the right; and his crowing over creating this legislation and association with FAIR speaks for itself. Kobach also seems to be one of Fox New’s “go to guys” anytime the issue of immigration comes up, and he’s worked to promote the Nativist cause for Arpaio, and in Nebraska.  This all boils down to the fact that Kobach is really a single issue candidate for an insidious lobby with roots in eugenicist movements, he’s not running for Kansans, he’s running for Nativists.

Of course, Kobach is listed as an attorney with the Immigration Reform Law Institute, the legal arm of FAIR, as its “national expert on constitutional law.” Aside from doing legal work for FAIR, when Kobach was running for Congress in Kansas’ 3rd District in 2003 and 2004, he took $10,000 from a FAIR-related political action committee, the U.S. Immigration Reform PAC, formerly FAIR PAC.

The president of the U.S. Immigration Reform PAC is Mary Lou Tanton, wife of John Tanton, the founder of FAIR. Tanton still sits on FAIR’s board of directors.

FAIR is a pretty nasty anti-immigrant enterprise, having taken $1.2 million in the past from the eugenics-loving Pioneer Fund, a group founded on the idea of scientific racism.

I’m still registered R for now, and I will be voting against the wingnuts like Kobach in the primaries. If the wingnuts win, I will switch parties.

UPDATE: As can be seen here, Kris Kobach has a vested interest in this bill.

Iris

Another infamous “Faked Macro” photo… to do this you put the subject on the floor, stand on a stool or chair, and shoot the photo with your telephoto lens well extended. It’s tricky as you have to minutely move your head back and forth to get the camera to focus, and you are sunk if you don’t have image stabilization in the lens because otherwise it’s near impossible to get the shot without some blurring.

Fresh Snappage: Tonight’s Moon

Tonight’s moon, a recurring theme at this blog…

Reign of Kindo – Needle and Thread

If you haven’t guessed yet since this is the second song I’ve posted from this band, I really do like Reign of Kindo, complex, artful, and just plain good.

Here’s the rundown so you can listen to more or buy some of their albums or tunes:

Candyrat Records http://www.candyrat.com/artists/Reign…

Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/The-Reign-Of-Ki…

itunes
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-…

Joseph Secchiaroli (guitar/vocals)
Steven Padin (drums/vocals)
Kelly Sciandra (piano/rvocals)
Michael Carroll (guitar/percussion/sizes)
Jeffery Jarvis (bass/vocals)

Visit Reign of Kindo at http://www.myspace.com/thereignofkindo

The Storm Comes at Nightfall

A picture I took on my second cruise, night falling as we head into a storm.

The Nuclear Conundrum

A panel discussion of the drivers and restrainers to building new Nuclear Energy plants in the US. The panel is well rounded with Stewart Brand, Michael Brune and Industry represtentation.This is part one of five, the others are in order after it.

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Part V

Holier than Thou: Outcast for Promoting Science

Within some extreme fundamentalist sects of Islam there’s a doctrine known as “Takfirism”  – it’s most often used by terrorists like Ayman Al Zawhari, or by fundamentalist schools to justify killing other muslims through declaring them apostate. To boil it down to simple terms, on one pretext or another (your beard was trimmed to you played a music CD, etc, ) a person is declared Takfir and branded as apostate, and for the more extreme fundamentalists apostates are subject to death as punishment. To put it in simplest terms you are declared a heretic by someone who claims to be holier than you in your own faith.

For real Takfir most real scholars believe that the person who becomes Takfir must make a declaration of such or an open denial of some major component of their faith, you become Takfir through your own declaration or decision, not the declaration or or decision of another.

What’s this got to do with you and I?

In an earlier article I pointed out how Fox is either a sucker for the most fundamentalist views in Christianity, or they are are actively promoting those over mainstream Christian views, take your pick. In the US these fundamentalists use a similar “holier than thou” stance to brand anyone who doesn’t promote exact, literal, biblical inerrancy as a heretic and to cast them out. (Note that none of these  extremist Christians are so wrapped up in their own rhetoric that they think killing due to this is justified as some off flavor Salafi and Wahhabists in Islam do.)

Here’s another example as a followup to my earlier post, to demonstrate how intolerant these fringes really are and how ABC news is also a sucker for the extremists just like Fox:

In this segment they bring in notable Answers in Genesis whack ball Ken Ham try to refute the guy. You might remember Ken from the infamous “Creationism Museum” in KY, you know the one where they imply that all black people are cursed.

Lord Monckton and Snake Oil

While Lord Monckton might be good at devising Sudoku puzzles, you sure don’t want to seek his advice on anything to do with either science or politics since he’s demonstrably a consummate and nearly pathological liar when it comes to those two arenas.

He’s hopped on the climate denialist bandwagon, and there are many examples of untruths, hyperbole, and amazing claims in his body of statements on climate science, and he even managed to sucker me before I knew much about him [back here — one of those posts I really regret having created, followup is embedded in an update in the original post and here.]

Another bizarre example – he claims to be a member of the House of Lords, even though the House of Lords has stated that:

“Christopher Monckton is not and has never been a Member of the House of Lords. There is no such thing as a ‘non-voting’ or ‘honorary’ member.”

Indeed, the only time Fraud Monckton ran for house of Lords he received zero votes.

Peter Sinclair at Climate Denial Crock of the Week has a two part series debunking the Snake Oil that Fraud Monckton is pimping, if you haven’t seen Part one, stop by LGF , and here is part II:

H/T Deltoid