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Articles for this week's Archive

ACLU Gets Voting Declared Illegal
France May Let Workers Work
Bush Punishes Tenet for Bad Iraq Intelligence
Thanksgiving Made Illegal
NAACP: Dr. Rice Not Black Enough

Friday, December 17, 2004

ACLU Gets Voting Declared Illegal

Yesterday the US Supreme Court declared that all voting, whether by paper, or electronic, even the act of voting itself, was unconstitutional since it inherently disenfranchised people of color.

"This has been a real coup for us," said Jeffrey Gamso, Legal Director of the ACLU of Ohio. "All we were trying to do is make sure Republicans were not allowed to vote, and then this happens. It's like getting an early Christmas present.

"In Ohio, people of color reported having to stand in line in order to vote. Some people left the line and went home rather than wait. It's not their fault they got out of line, those people were disenfranchised. If there were no lines they could have voted. Democrats lead busy lives, they can't wait in line for an hour to vote.

"In Florida, we sued over the electronic ballots, because people were asked to show identification. Can you believe that? Identification! To ask for identification is racist. Many people can't get identification: some of them are illegal aliens, some are felons, and some are dead. Why should that keep them from voting?

"We had gotten two state supreme courts to declare both paper ballots illegal, and asking for identification illegal. But we needed a ruling at the federal level. That's when we turned to Joe Lockhart."

Lockhart explained the argument he helped the ACLU come up with, "You see, there is no perfect counting system, all of them have a margin of error, you simply can't count all the ballots. We used to call this 'acceptable margin of error.' But I told the ACLU to argue that even if the margin of error is as small as one person, then that shows unacceptable systemic disenfranchisement.

"The only way to make sure to count every vote is to ask for identification and verify everyone is who they say they are. But of course that is inherently racist, so you can never count every single vote. If only one vote goes uncounted, then all voting inherently violates people's rights.

Stuart Comstock-Gay, Executive Director the National Voting Rights institute, that participated in the lawsuit, told us "As long as any votes are miscounted, misplaced or misdirected, our elections cannot be said to be properly working.

"If even one vote is missing, the election is a sham. Since in every election votes go missing, all votes are shams. Therefore, we are suing to make all votes be declared unconstitutional and have us appoint leaders and judges for our country that we determine the people want and need. That is the only way the people's right to vote can be protected.

"We won by a slim margin. We are lucky Rehnquist got cancer."

"This is a great day for America," Gamso said, "We thought we'd have to settle for allowing only Democrats to vote, but now we don't even need the Democrats - we can simply appoint rulers and judges we decide on, and so liberty is finally secured - in the capable hands of lawyers."

Thursday, December 16, 2004

France May Let Workers Work

Workers throughout France who have been clamoring to be allowed to work more hours in order to save up some extra money may get a chance. Last week French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin announced plans to reform the 35 hour work week, which some conservatives blame for contributing to unemployment rather than lowering it.

Part of the new reforms are allowing employees to increase their overtime, if they wish, from 3 hours per week to 4 (for a total of 39). Employees may also trade vacation time (they get 5 weeks minimum) for the equivalent pay if they do not wish to travel. While hailed by employers and some workers, unions are against the changes.

"We really want to work," said Jean-Paul Besson. "I worked in construction, my children need toys, and cheese. I cannot afford it since there are no jobs. They are forced to eat American cheese - they get teased at school."

"I would like some extra money," said Pierre Satre, a worker at a paper mill, "but the government won't let me work any more hours. Why can I not work if I want? I cannot afford the latest fashions with my current pay. The women - they all laugh at me. If I could work a few more hours, then I could afford a nice silk shirt."

At German auto supplier Robert Bosch's plant near Lyon, workers voted to increase the work week to 36 hours in order to avoid layoffs. "These men self-sacrificially agreed to work a whole extra hour per week without pay," said Dieter Bonhoff, manager of the plant. "I was so proud of them I cried. Who says the French cannot work hard?"

However, there is strong opposition to the reforms.

"The problem is not that we lowered the work week hours, the problem is that we did not lower them enough," said Fran├žois Rebsamen, President of Le Parti Socialiste. "Instead of increasing the amount of overtime people can work, we should eliminate overtime altogether and lower the max hours per week to 20. While still giving them full benefits, it would force employers to hire twice as many people - that would fix our unemployment problem right away."

"No, we do not want to work," said Jacques Ruffino, who has been unemployed and living off government checks for 10 years. "I have a great life, I have no ties, I meet many beautiful women. Why would I want to work? I get healthcare and unemployment, and do nothing all day. It is my right! They cannot take it away!"

"These people have been brainwashed by the Americans," said Bernard Thibault, secretary general of the Confederation Generale du Travail. "Work, work, get ahead, that's all they care about, they do not care about their fellow man. If employees are allowed to ask for more hours, then employers will treat better those employees willing to work harder. For instance, they might give promotions based on merit instead of seniority.

"Even the unions in America are progressive enough to know this concept of 'merit' is evil."

"This is just another example of American hegemony," French President Jacques Chirac said. "They are even influencing our workers now. I will not allow the 35 hour work week to be tampered with. It is a symbol of the French concern for worker's rights and the French working spirit.

"Americans can keep their bootstraps. We wear Louis Vuitton."

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Bush Punishes Tenet for Bad Iraq Intelligence

Yesterday President Bush strangled former CIA Director George Tenet at an award ceremony where Tenet, former Iraq administrator L. Paul Bremer and retired General Tommy Franks were to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

"First he guts the CIA during the previous administration. Then last year I told Tenet it would be the last time he gave me bad intelligence reports," Bush said about the lack of WMDs found in Iraq. "So I made good on that promise."

When asked about his plan, the President told us, "Tenet has been avoiding me ever since he resigned, so I haven't been able to get him alone. I think he thought I was just going to open up a can of whoop-ass on him for not supporting me enough on the Iraq war.

"Then, while watching Cops, I saw this episode where they tell the criminals that they've won a cruise, then when they show up the cops arrest them. I thought, what a good idea. I'll just tell Tenet that he's getting an award, that way I'll get him in the same room as me.

"He didn't even see it coming, he thought the cameras would protect him. Some on my staff were worried about prosecution, but as his last act I had Ashcroft declare Tenet an enemy combatant. Then, since he had no uniform, Tenet would be considered a spy, and according to the Geneva Convention would be subject to summary execution. So it all worked out.

"I told him 'Don't Mess With Texas.' He should have listened."

After the execution, Bush threw the three medals in the garbage. "Sorry guys," he said to Bremer and Franks, "they're just political party favors. They really don't mean anything. I mean, did you really think Tenet was getting a medal? Hey, maybe y'all would like some nice pens? I still have a bunch that say 'Operation Iraqi Freedom' on the side."

Just before choking him, Bush was overheard whispering to Tenet "I find your lack of faith disturbing."

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Thanksgiving Made Illegal

This past Thanksgiving will be the last. After a multi-year struggle, the ACLU finally won a Supreme Court battle to make the holiday of Thanksgiving illegal. Their argument centered around the first amendment's prohibition on the establishment of religion.

"The holiday of Thanksgiving is perhaps the most pernicious of all," said Heimer Weisenstein, the ACLU attorney who handled the case. "The idea that we need to thank some jealous, capricious God for milestones that we ourselves accomplished, is insulting.

"No longer will POWs or pilots who were shot down be able to thank God for their survival on tv. Imagine their arrogance, just because they almost died, mentioning God like that. They suffered to protect people's freedom from having hurt feelings, and then they come back and do that."

"Why should we remember loser pilgrims who thought God should be credited with their survival?" said Barry Goldturd, President of Atheists For Ruining Everything. "We should be celebrating those Pilgrims that said 'get lost God, I am the master of my own destiny and don't need help from you or any stinking Indians.' Those are the true heroes - the ones who were so confident in themselves, that they gave the Native Americans smallpox just to make surviving harder without their help."

"It was so hard, every year having to hear about God," said Betsy Cowardson, President of Atheists With Easily Hurt Feelings. "Even my own daughter said 'God bless you' once when I sneezed, can you believe that? I called the school and complained right away. Who is teaching her that kind of language? Doesn't anyone have any respect anymore?"

The new holiday being proposed is called Personal Affirmation Day. Instead of thanking God, or each other, people are encouraged to talk about their accomplishments over the previous year.

"By focusing on ourselves and not others, it will help build confidence in a decade where more self help books were sold than ever before," said Robert Cottonears, President of Nietzscheans Against the Poor. "Now, if we can only get that show Andromeda shown in schools."

On a related note, FOX News has changed its theme music. It is now called "Jesus, Jehovah, Allah, Fuck Yeah!"

Monday, December 13, 2004

NAACP: Dr. Rice Not Black Enough

Recently Dr. Condoleezza Rice was named Secretary of State by President Bush. Instead of the expected excitement over the first African American female Secretary of State, there was an angry reaction from some members of the political landscape.

"Dr. Rice had a sheltered life as a youngster from the racial conflicts and segregation of the South," the announcement carried by AP said. "After all, the famous boming in Birmingham, Alabama that killed four girls in a church, was a whole 4 miles from her home, and she was only playmates with one of the girls. Hell, that doesn't count as being affected by racial violence, she would have had to have been playmates with at least two of them, and been in the church when the basement exploded, for me to believe she has any knowledge of how black people felt in the South."

"'Condi' Rice (I'm not calling her 'Dr.') had piano and ballet lessons as a child," said Julian Bond, Chairman of the NAACP. "What Black child gets ballet lessons? If her parents could afford it, then they must have been rich."

Both of Dr. Rice's parents were local schoolteachers. When we pointed this out he responded "Yeah, and that was the golden age for schoolteachers, in those days schoolteachers were respected ... and rich."

"And this whole nonsense of how her family became Republicans because the Democratic Party wouldn't let Condi's father register as a Democrat? what a lie! They would have let him register, they only asked him to count the number of beans in a jar first. Hmph, some teacher, can't even count.

We asked about Dr. Rice's schooldays, he said "She skipped two grades, obviously she can't understand how hard our children have it now, with so many being left behind in bad public schools with racially biased tests. How can she relate to our children? Now if she were held back two grades, then I might support her.

"Someone like her will give a bad message to African American children. She would inspire children to study hard, start their own businesses, and try to get ahead on their own. Then when they fail, because no black people can get ahead in this racist country, they will be even more despondent. She is setting up our children for failure!

"Of course, there is the despicable fact that this Republican President is appointing so many women and people of color. What does he think he's doing? That's the Democrats' job! Just the fact that he supports her proves that she shouldn't be in that job, since Bush is only trying to fill a quota with unqualified people."