Friday, March 09, 2018

Honest Abe not keen on Blair pick

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is a war criminal. He may have given President Bush the final push to launch his murderous war against Iraq fifteen years ago. Without Blair's unconditional support, the Iraq war would have been a tough sell; possibly even cancelled. The results were millions dead, wounded or displaced, Iraq's landscape ravaged by depleted uranium still deforming babies, and trillions squandered in the process. War criminals should have a date in the dock of international justice, not receiving the prestigious Lincoln Leadership Prize being awarded to Blair April 24 right here in Chicago by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation (ALPLF). Ray McCaskey , Chair of the ALPLF Board of Directors, claims Blair was picked because "He embodies the kind of leadership President Lincoln would have recognized and appreciated." I suspect if Honest Abe could rise from Oak Ridge Cemetery to confront Chairman McCaskey, he'd remind him that in 1848, he was denied re-election to Congress because he opposed the criminal war of his day, the US land grab of Texas and much of Mexico in the Mexican War of 1848. Lincoln would close with this: "You can fool some of the people all of the time; all of the people some of the time; but you can't fool me that Tony Blair isn't a war criminal."

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

The tragic legacy of Constitution's ratification

I chuckle when I hear a gun advocate invoke the 2nd Amendment to promote the unrestricted manufacture and sale of machine guns and hands guns of enormous fire power. The near daily occurrence of a mass shooting of 4 or more makes no dent on their real concern this imagined sacred constitutional guarantee will be abridged in the slightest. My question to them is 'What slave patrol are you planning to participate in?'

The purpose of the 2nd Amendment was to ensure the new nation had a sufficient nationally controlled militia to repel foreign invasion or internal insurrection. But slave states feared federal control over state militias could doom their primary purpose of being state slave patrols to maintain totalitarian power of slaves. The new nation had already called upon free blacks to help win the Revolutionary War; a dangerous precedent to fearful slaveholders. To get Southern support for the Constitution, James Madison altered his original draft of the noxious amendment to declare that the purpose of a well regulated militia was to guarantee the security of a 'free state' instead of the original 'free country'. The political ploy worked, ensuring the Constitution's ratification. Alas, 235 years on the ocean of blood from over 100,000 killed and wounded annually is a ghoulish reminder of the cost incurred to birth our constitutional system.