Tuesday, March 28, 2006

King-Sized Tantrum

This guy shows us every day why he should not be in congress. After his immigration bill gets knocked around by Bishops, Cardinals, Ministers, and Rabbis from across the religious spectrum, he lashes out at the catholic church for being "left-wing liberals" and making a phony issue out of a provision in the bill that would make helping an illegal immigrant a felony. The bill as written makes no distinctions about humanitarian aid so religious leaders and social services groups rightly saw the bill passed by the House as a threat to the work they do.
King of course would have none of that and went out of his way to castigate and slander anyone who opposed him particularly the catholic church. King built a straw man saying those opposed to his bill supported illegal immigration and likened his bill to "gods work". Cardinal Mahony made very clear in his NYTimes op-ed piece "That does not mean that the Catholic Church encourages or supports illegal immigration. Every day in our parishes, social service programs, hospitals and schools, we witness the baleful consequences of illegal immigration. Families are separated, workers are exploited and migrants are left by smugglers to die in the desert. Illegal immigration serves neither the migrant nor the common good."

Newsday reports "King said he would fight to soften the provision against those who help illegal immigrants in a final version."

So what's the big deal? King is agreeing with the need to change the bill with an amendment but still goes on the offensive.
But what exactly is the amendment for? King keeps insisting that the attack on the bill is a phony charge.
King says in his best petulant child voice "I support the amendment because it takes away the phony issue the Catholic bishops created... Even without this amendment, no priest or nun would have been prosecuted. But if this makes them happy, fine."

So he is supporting an amendment to fix something he says doesn't need fixing because it is a "phony issue."
Is he supporting the amendment just to get the bishops to shut up? If King had any principles, he would oppose the amendment because he insists there is nothing that needs to be changed.
If it is such a "phony issue" why not continue the fight?
Maybe because King is losing the media battle. His outlandish remarks are getting alot of attention and more and more people are seeing how unstable he really is.
The best is his "But if this makes them happy, fine."
I can see him saying that with a child-like sour puss, arms crossed in defiance. King just doesn't like to be criticized and is very thin-skinned.

Somebody call him a WHAA-mbulance.

Newsday Editorial - Overheated Rhetoric

Rep. King and the church exchange blows over the immigration bill
March 28, 2006

As thousands march in the streets against an immigration bill that Rep. Peter King co-sponsored, the Seaford Republican has this frustrating sensation: "I feel like I'm shadow-boxing." King, who boxes for real, is also throwing some wild punches in this debate. What is needed on both sides is a calm dialogue and significant improvement in a bad bill.The bill is the Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005. Among its many features is a 700-mile fence on the border with Mexico. That idea arose on the House floor, King says, but he acknowledges that he voted for it. So did Rep. Steve Israel, a Huntington Democrat, King points out. That just makes the fence a bipartisan bad idea - an expensive one, too. King says it could cost $3 billion.
King would like some points for being a humanitarian, because hundreds of people have died trying to cross this stretch of border. Nice try, Pete, but it's hard to imagine a fence keeping out those who are desperate to get in. As one immigrant advocate put it, "Fences encourage tunnels." Desperate immigrants digging tunnels won't exactly be safer. But the fence isn't even the prime cause of the ruckus. Mostly, the fuss is about the bill's elevation of immigration violations to felonies. King says he voted to downgrade that to misdemeanors, but Democrats and right-wing Republicans voted to keep the felony language. That's ugly politics.
Beyond that, the protests focus on the addition of the word "assist" to the definition of prohibitive actions abetting illegal immigrants. King says it's aimed at fake-identification providers. But church leaders say it could criminalize their daily acts of charity. Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles said that, if it becomes law, Catholics should disobey it. Swinging back wildly, King threw an over-the-top haymaker about pedophile priests - a punch he should have pulled. The bill's biggest defect is that it doesn't provide any kind of guest worker program to take account of the deep economic need for these workers. King is leaving it to the Senate to fix that. The Senate Judiciary Committee took the first steps yesterday. But much remains to be done.

King hates Newsday anyway. He'll just write a letter blasting the left-wing liberal slant of Newsday and say that they don't know what they are talking about. He won't deal with the issue, he'll just attack.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

King in the Land of Make-Believe

George W. Bush was a lame-duck, destined to be one-term president right at the start of his first term. Then 19 hijackers and Osama bin Laden gave him a second chance. A 90% approval rating for just being there when we were attacked was perplexing.
Since before the election of 2004, Bushs poll number have been under 50%. Bush ecked out the smallest win in US history and got a chance to send this country further down the spiral.
In the past few months, Bush has been a steady in the mid 30's in most polls and the polls that had him higher have since fell into line.
In a NY Daily News article, Peter King divorces himself from reality and is quoted as saying "The President's view still represents 51% of the country... If we get some stability in Iraq, he can definitely come back."

51%? Really? Bush hasn't seen the number 51 in a very long time. Here are some recent "Job Approval" numbers.....

Newsweek: 3/16-17/06 Approve 36 Disapprove 58 Unsure 6
Gallup: 3/13-16/06 Approve 37 Disapprove 59 Unsure 5
FOX/Opinion Dynamics RV: 3/14-15/06 Approve 39 Disapprove 51 Unsure 11
NPR LV: 3/12-14/06 - Approve 39 Disapprove 58 Unsure 3
NBC/Wall Street Journal: 3/10-13/06 - Approve 37 Disapprove 58 Unsure 5
CNN/USA Today/Gallup: 3/10-12/06 - Approve 36 Disapprove 60 Unsure 4
CBS :3/9-12/06 - Approve 34 Disapprove 57 Unsure 9
Pew :3/8-12/06 - Approve 33 Disapprove 57 Unsure 10
AP-Ipsos: 3/6-8/06 - Approve 37 Disapprove 60
ABC/Washington Post: 3/2-5/06 - Approve 41 Disapprove 58 Unsure 1

When it comes to Iraq, Bush's approval numbers are in the 30's or worse and on the terrorism issue, Bush is sliding into the low 40's. On energy policy he's in the 20's. And when asked about the direction of the country, it's overwhelmingly bad for Bush.

It's not just Iraq that is pulling Bush down, but every aspect of the horrible job he is doing. And does King really see a turn-around in Iraq coming any time soon? Take a look at the former Yugoslavia and what happend after Titos death. Yugoslavia was composed of different ethnic groups that were barely held together by a strongman. The Yugoslav Presidency Council which was comprised of the different regional/ethnic factions began to disintergrate, Milošević started exerting Serbian nationalism and the country fell apart under the weight of ethnic wars.
Iraq is not one country. It is a land with different religious and ethnic factions like the Sunni, the Shi'a and the Kurds. Don't expect them to get along nicely too soon. The Kurds suffered under Saddams Sunni rule. Civil war in Iraq is a reality.

Sadly the brave men and women of our armed forces are stuck in the middle of this.

Friday, March 24, 2006

King vs. Catholics

Looks like King is escalating the war of words against the catholic church over his immigration bill. Now keep in mind that bi-polar Pete has said he will work to change the law to strike the felony for aid groups like the catholic for helping illegal immigrants.
King is trying to counter Sen. Clinton invoking chistian doctrine by saying catholic bishops "should spend more time protecting little boys from pedophile priests." and
"Stopping alien smuggling gangs is doing God's work. These people who are supposed to be speaking for God, saying this [the bill] is a sin, and they should go to confession,"
The fact is the complaints about the bill aren't about "smuggling gangs." King knows this but is trying to distract from the real issue.
Bishop Thomas Wenski, of Orlando, Fla is rightly offended that Kings only retort to his critics is to bring up the child molestation probelms in the catholic church. While that certainly is an issue to be dealt with, invoking it in this debate is as Bishop Wenski says "To content himself at taking cheap shots at the bishops shows that he is unable to engage us on the issues - because his position defies logic and certainly does not represent the 'compassionate conservatism' of his party's leader,"

Roger Cardinal Mahony of Los Angeles and Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio have both said they would not "obey any laws that criminalize illegal aliens or the social service providers who help them."

In the New York Daily News, King escalates his rhetoric by saying "The Catholic Church is being totally fraudulent on this. If Cardinal Mahony spent as much time turning over information on pedophile priests as telling priests to violate the law on this, California would be a lot better than it is today.....They're being totally un-Christian because they're talking about this being an evil bill, a meanspirited bill, that we're doing all this as subterfuge to lock them up.... Now, we could lock them up for other reasons - with what they did with pedophilia and what they did to abuse kids in Catholic schools, we could have locked them up years ago."
Is King making vague threats about locking the Bishop and cardinal up? Is he trying to shut them up on this issue?

Cardinal Mahony in a NY Times op-ed stated the issue pretty clearly which is why King is so afraid and can only go on the attack. Mahony writes "Some supporters of the bill have even accused the church of encouraging illegal immigration and meddling in politics. But I stand by my statement. Part of the mission of the Roman Catholic Church is to help people in need. It is our Gospel mandate, in which Christ instructs us to clothe the naked, feed the poor and welcome the stranger. Indeed, the Catholic Church, through Catholic Charities agencies around the country, is one of the largest nonprofit providers of social services in the nation, serving both citizens and immigrants.

Providing humanitarian assistance to those in need should not be made a crime, as the House bill decrees. As written, the proposed law is so broad that it would criminalize even minor acts of mercy like offering a meal or administering first aid.

Current law does not require social service agencies to obtain evidence of legal status before rendering aid, nor should it. Denying aid to a fellow human being violates a law with a higher authority than Congress — the law of God.

That does not mean that the Catholic Church encourages or supports illegal immigration. Every day in our parishes, social service programs, hospitals and schools, we witness the baleful consequences of illegal immigration. Families are separated, workers are exploited and migrants are left by smugglers to die in the desert. Illegal immigration serves neither the migrant nor the common good."

So when King invokes "Gods work" as something the bill does, he is just trying to change the subject. King can't debate the issue so he goes on the attack.

This isn't the first time he has attacked religious people because they disagree with him. During the Social Security debate he said of an an inter-faith group of religous leaders that opposed privitization "God forgive them for they know not what they do. I base my decision on facts, reason and informed social conscious and not left-wing pseudo-theology."

King has a history of going on the attack when cornered by his own ignorance. The self-styled pugilist likes a fight. The problem for himn is that he keeps landing blows on himself.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Increasingly Unstable

King is up to his old antics again, charging full on attacking like a whirling dervish.
There has been opposition to Kings proposed anti-immigration bill most recently from Senator Hillary Clinton
who said yesterday "It is certainly not in keeping with my understanding of the Scriptures, This bill would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself."
The problem Senator Clinton and many in the religious community see is that under the proposed law, anyone assisting an illegal alien would be subject to criminal charges. A soup kitchen or outreach program would be in trouble if they help someone here illegally.

This is not about the illegal immigrant issue but about helping those that are here.

King in his usual bluster, sounding as unstable as ever responded "I hope Hillary's a better senator than a theologian. She's facilitating clerics who have a martyrdom complex and slandering good people such as myself. She's actually an accessory to a slander and a calumny."

Wow. Even a basic understanding of christian doctrine would be enough to know that helping the poor and less fortunate is a basic tenent.
King lashes out at members of the clergy who are doing good deeds. Instead of debating on the issue, King says catholic leaders "should spend more time protecting little boys from pedophile priests."
He tells the NYTimes "This is the left wing of the Catholic Church — these are the frustrated social workers," said Mr. King, who described himself as a practicing Catholic. "They're giving an incentive for more illegals to come here. I don't think it's right."
King is a "practicing catholic?" If he were a "practicing catholic" and knew anything about the church, other than opposition to abortion and gay marriage, the catholic church tenents are unabashedly socially liberal. Kings attacks on Clinton about theology shows he hasn't the first clue about the teachings of Jesus in the Gospels and his disciples in the New Testament.

King pulled the same thing when the catholic church came out in opposition of the Bush-Iraq War and spoke out about torture and abuse at Abu Gharib prison "If there's anyone in the world who has no right to speak on sexual abuse, it's the Vatican. This is the height of hypocrisy." Exactly how is that an excuse for what happened at the prison?

King complains of being slandered but has no problem doing it unto others. What was that in Luke about doing unto others again? Perhaps the theologian, practicing catholic King knows.
He also uses the $2 word "calumny." Does he know what that means? King said "slander and a calumny." Just for the record, "calumny" is just another word for slander. King just wants to sound like he knows big words.

The funny part of this whole thing is that King supported an amendment that would have gotten rid of the felony provision but then turned around and voted for the legislation after the amendment failed.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Port Insecurity: King Fails Us Again

King came out swinging on the perfect election-year issue... Port Security. King opposed the Dubai World deal to take over administration of major U.S. ports. King publically broke with the Bush administration and sided with ultra-lefty, pinko commie Chuck Schumer of the "I hate America" Democratic party.
Sense any sarcasm there?
Chuck Schumer has been on the fore-front of the port security issue for years now and has been pointing out that funding is woefully inadequte. Only 5% of all incoming containers are inspected.
A few years ago, Schumer was pushing for more funding and candidate Kerry brought the issue up during the 2004 election. What was Bush's reaction back then? He said "How are we going to pay for it?" Great answer, right?

While busting the U.S. treasury for his misadventures in Iraq, Bush ignores security here at home.
King was chairman of the Emergency Preperadeness sub-commitee (see how well we were prepared or Katrina) and is now chairman of the full Homeland Security committee but had been silent on the ports issue.
We are entering the 2006 mid-term election season and King knows he is vulnerable to a strong opponent. What resonates better with voters than "security" issues?
King hopes to ride the wave of his undeserved "maverick" reputation to re-election. Too bad he votes 92% of the time with Tom Delay.
What a "maverick."
We all saw the public outcry over the Dubai World deal but what has passed into the night without press coverage is the vote on Thursday, March 16th against increasing funds for PORT SECURITY.
Take a wild guess who voted against the amendment?
That's right, Rep. Peter T. King.
The amendment proposed by Rep. Martin Sabo (D-MN) included (hat tip to Think Progress)
" $300 million to enable U.S. customs agents to inspect high-risk containers at all 140 overseas ports that ship directly to the United States. Current funding only allows U.S. customs agents to operate at 43 of these ports.

– $400 million to place radiation monitors at all U.S. ports of entry. Currently, less than half of U.S. ports have radiation monitors.

– $300 million to provide backup emergency communications equipment for the Gulf Coast."

The amendment was defeated in an almost party-line vote 210-208. A few republicans agreed that we do need more money for port security. King didn't
The amendment H.AMDT.733 (A033) was for HR4939 - Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and Hurricane Recovery, 2006.
The amendment clearly falls under both "Defense" and "War on Terror" but Peter King just doesn't care.
King's vote against Port Security can be found here, Roll Call Vote #56. There are no other plans to increase funding for Port Security.
King (NY) - NO

Housekeeping note: We've been a little busy and took some time off to recharge our batteries.
More info on Kings 2003 vote against Port Security is coming up.