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Trump's Space Force is a Star Wars Rerun

MUCH of our country's space exploration, for most Americans who chip in with their contributions to our government's budget, is a hobby and a fascination; much more than it's essential or even relevant to the needs and concerns that are their own personal priority for government. It's entertainment at shuttle launch time, and it has been a propagandized race with Russia and China that politicians seem to believe still has merit and should fill us with patriotic pride at our insistence on Cold War-like competition in space over more pragmatic and peaceable cooperation between nations.

As many like to point out in defense of the tax dollars that fuel the space chase, the percentage of that budget which goes into space exploration is relatively small compared to where the rest of the money is spent. That little blip in the trillion-plus national budget make space exploration a negligible expense in their eyes - save for the trillions of dollars in escalating debt (ironically, much of it to the China), and the miserly way money for our basic needs is apportioned out by Congress.

Trump's reported plan to start a 'Space Force' was a thumbs-up to legislators of both parties with firms and companies in their states connected in some fashion or another to the billions appropriated for missile defense systems, military satellites, propulsion systems, robotics, and every little facet of starry-eyed and enterprising space enthusiasts' wish list that they can manage to convince the American public to fund.

The way funds are allocated to NASA, money is dispersed and mostly hidden throughout the Defense, Energy, and Interior appropriations. The Defense Dept., through their Air Force budget, shoulders a great deal of responsibility for delivering the feed to the industry trough.

Pres. Bush's Chief Administrator of NASA for a time, Sean O’Keefe, who just happened to serve as Navy secretary, as well as comptroller and chief financial officer at the Defense Dept., was quoted declaring that NASA and the Pentagon were practically inseparable. Bruce K. Gagnon, Coordinator of the Global Network against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space, quotes O’Keefe, who was on a paid advisory board of Northrop Grumman and Raytheon, that it is “imperative that we have a more direct association between the Defense Department and NASA.”

O’Keefe, continued, “Technology has taken us to a point where you really can’t differentiate between that which is purely military in application and whose capabilities are civil and commercial in nature.”

NASA, the Department of Defense and the Department of Energy are currently working together to develop the technology base for what they term, Space Nuclear Reactor Power. This program will develop and demonstrate in ground tests the technology required for space reactor power systems from tens of kilowatts to hundreds of kilowatts. The SP-100 nuclear reactor system is to be launched ‘radioactively cold.' When the mission is done, the reactor is intended to be stored in space for hundreds of years. The reactor would would utilize new blends of "recycled" uranium fuel.

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology, manages the Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science. Additional science partners are located at the Russian Aviation and Space Agency and at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the project to develop and build the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and JPL.

Included in NASA plans for the nuclear rocket to Mars is a new generation of Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs) for interplanetary missions. NASA touts future mining colonies on the Moon, Mars, and asteroids that would be powered by nuclear reactors. Most experts believe that only advanced nuclear reactors could provide the hundreds of kilowatts of power the craft would need to get a manned crew there in the time needed to protect them from the degrading effects of space radiation.

The Prometheus Project, established in 2003 by NASA to develop nuclear-powered systems for long-duration space mission, is based on an archaic notion that began in the '50's with a space project named Orion. Project Orion was a propulsion system that depended on exploding atomic bombs roughly two hundred feet behind the space vehicle. Orion was developed at the old General Dynamics Corporation, under the guidance of several former Manhattan Project scientists.

The project's participants proposed exploding atomic bombs at regular intervals at very short distances behind a specially designed space ship in order to propel it to the Moon and other planets in the Solar System far more quickly and cheaply than with chemical-fuel rockets.

The motto for Orion was, 'Mars by 1965, Saturn by 1970'. Orion ran out of money and needed the government's help. The military agreed to take up the project, but only on the condition that it adapt itself to a military purpose. The project was later abandoned because of uncertainty about the safety and efficacy of nuclear energy, and the high cost of the speculative program. Also, because the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty of 1963 outlawed it. (will the new nuclear technology need new testing agreements between nations?)

In the late 1950's, Freeman Dyson, physicist, educator, and author, joined the Orion Project research team. "Technology must be guided and driven by ethics if it is to do more than provide new toys for the rich," Dyson said, as he received the Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion 2000. Dyson once commented that, "Project Orion is a monument to those who once believed, or still believe, in turning the power of these weapons into something else."

The Prometheus project was a cynical attempt by the administration to commit the nation to Rumsfeld's Star War's nonsense. Bush and Europa's moons.. right. The Bush WH wanted you to know that their nuclear space project to Mars would prove new technologies for future NASA missions... like space-based weaponry.

The decision by Bush to withdraw from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty allowed research beneficial to orbiting space-based lasers as part of a global missile defense shield to resume; orbiting space lasers on permanent space platforms.

Apart from the administration and NASA's ambition to explore Europa and Mars, the Prometheus Project was intended to pave the way for the original Pentagon plan to mount nuclear reactors on space-based platforms to power their nuclear lasers. And of course, as they also asserted, ". . . the United States must also have the capability to deny America's adversaries the use of commercial space platforms, for military purposes."

Despite Trump's hawking of a new 'Space Force,' whatever that is, the U.S. military has already established a significant space program.

In a 1997 U.S. Army Space and Strategic Defense Command news release, the then-commanding general of the Training and Doctrine Command, Gen. Hartzog, and the then-commander of the SSDC, Lieut. General Anderson signed a memorandum of agreement to recognize SSDC as the Army's specified proponent for space and missile defense. http://fas.org/spp/military/commission/report.htm

The MOA also permitted SSDC to establish the Space and Missile Defense Battle Lab.

The Space and Strategic Defense Command was set up as the Army's specified proponent for space and national missile defense and an "integrator" for theater missile defense issues - recognized by the military establishment as a "one stop shop".

The Space Battle Lab is intended to develop "warfighting concepts, focus military science and technology research, conduct warfighting experiments, and support exercises and training activities, all focused on space and missile defense."

Lockheed Martin Space Systems and Northrop Grumman Space Technology ended up with the contract for the Space Battle Lab.

Lockheed Space Systems promotes the corporation's ambitions in "space-based telecommunications; remote-sensing; missile systems; and the capability to integrate these complex elements into a total "system of systems," as an enterprise built by heritage aerospace companies including Lockheed, Martin Marietta, RCA, GE and Loral.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems is one of the major operating units of the Lockheed Corporation. It designs, develops, tests, manufactures and operates a variety of advanced technology systems for military, civil, and commercial customers. Chief products include space launch and ground systems, remote sensing and communications satellites for commercial and government customers, advanced space observatories and spacecraft, fleet ballistic missiles and missile defense systems.

Everything for the next-generation of meddling in space. Everything for a down-on-his-luck weapon's manufacturer to get his blood money-grubbing career back on track.

Specific defense projects for the Lockheed Space Battle Lab:

-Global Positioning System IIR (GPS).
-Defense Meteorological Satellite Program
-Space Based Infrared System (Space-Based Lasers)
-International Space Station
-Theater High-Altitude Area Defense
-Airborne Laser
-Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missile: The D5 is the latest generation of submarine launched ballistic missiles
-Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missile: (UK FBM). The D5, built by LM Space & Strategic Missiles, is the cornerstone of the United Kingdom Ministry of Defense's strategic nuclear fleet.

Then there's the Air Force Space Command and the Space Warfare Center . . .

AFSPC is the major command providing space forces for the U.S. Space Command and trained ICBM forces for U.S. Strategic Command. AFSPC also supports NORAD with ballistic missile warning information, operates the Space Warfare Center to develop space applications for direct warfighter support, and is responsible for the Department of Defense's ICBM follow-on operational test and evaluation program.

Spacelift operations at the East and West Coast launch bases provide services, facilities and range safety control for the conduct of DOD, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and commercial launches. Through the command and control of all DOD satellites, satellite operators provide force-multiplying effects -- continuous global coverage, low vulnerability and autonomous operations. Satellites provide essential in-theater secure communications, weather and navigational data for ground, air and fleet operations, and threat warning. Ground-based radar and Defense Support Program satellites monitor ballistic missile launches around the world to guard against a surprise attack on North America. Space surveillance radars provide information on the location of satellites and space debris for the nation and the world.

All of these Defense dept. ambitions in space contain some element of funding for NASA operations to facilitate the missile and weapons support systems.

Stephen Hadley, Condi Rice's deputy and Bush's Nat. Security Adviser, served as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy from 1989 to 1993 and was responsible for defense policy on NATO and Western Europe, nuclear weapons and ballistic missile defense, and arms control. He was active in the negotiations that resulted in the START I and START II treaties. Hadley was also a member of the National Security Council staff during the earlier Bush administration.

As reported by Karl Grossman of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, Stephen Hadley, Condi Rice's deputy and Bush's Nat. Security Adviser, who also served as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy from 1989 to 1993, told an Air Force Association Convention in a speech September 11, 2000, "Space is going to be important. It has a great feature in the military,"

The Rumsfeld Commission's January 2001 report on the Military in Space, warned of a "space Pearl Harbor" if the U.S. does not thoroughly "dominate all aspects of space."

Rich Haver, former special assistant for intelligence to Donald Rumsfeld, said he expected battles in space within the next two decades.

"I believe space is the place we will fight in the next 20 years," said Haver, then vice president for intelligence strategy at Northrop Grumman Mission Systems. (sincere, concerned look on his face as he speaks).

"There are executive orders that say we don't want to do that," Haver explained. "There's been a long-standing U.S. policy to try to keep space a peaceful place, but ... we have in space assets absolutely essential to the conduct of our military operations (and our portfolios), absolutely essential to our national security. They have been there for many years," he asserted.

"When the true history of the Cold War is written and all the classified items are finally unclassified, I believe that historians will note that it was in space that a significant degree of this country's ability to win the Cold War was embedded," Haver extolled.

Responding to a question about the implications of China sending a man into space, Haver said: "I think the Chinese are telling us they're there, and I think if we ever wind up in a confrontation again with any one of the major powers who has a space capability we will find space is a battleground."

In September 2000, the PNAC drafted a report entitled "Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century."

The conservative foundation- funded report was authored by Bill Kristol, Bruce Jackson, Gary Schmitt, John Bolton and others. Bolton, now Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, was Senior Vice President of the conservative American Enterprise Institute.

The report called for: ". . . significant, separate allocation of forces and budgetary resources over the next two decades for missile defense," and claimed that despite the "residue of investments first made in the mid- and late 1980s, over the past decade, the pace of innovation within the Pentagon had slowed measurably." Also that, "without the driving challenge of the Soviet military threat, efforts at innovation had lacked urgency."

The PNAC report asserted that "while long-range precision strikes will certainly play an increasingly large role in U.S. military operations, American forces must remain deployed abroad, in large numbers for decades and that U.S. forces will continue to operate many, if not most, of today's weapons systems for a decade or more."

The PNAC document encouraged the military to "develop and deploy global missile defenses to defend the American homeland and American allies, and to provide a secure basis for U.S. power projection around the world."

You can hear the pitch of former Lockheed executives hawking in favor of their company's space weaponry:

-Control the new ‘International commons' of space and cyberspace, and pave the way for the creation of a new military service with the mission of space control. (U.S. Space Forces; eventually realized in the form of the Air Force-financed Lockheed Space Battle Lab) http://www.spacedaily.com/news/milspace-03z.html

-Exploit the "revolution" in military space affairs to insure the long-term superiority of U.S. conventional forces.
-Establish a two-stage transformation process which maximizes the value of current weapons systems through the application of advanced technologies.

The PNAC paper claimed that, "Potential rivals such as China were anxious to exploit these technologies broadly, while adversaries like Iran, Iraq and North Korea were rushing to develop ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons as a deterrent to American intervention in regions they sought to dominate. Also that, information and other new technologies – as well as widespread technological and weapons proliferation – were creating a ‘dynamic' that might threaten America's ability to exercise its ‘dominant' military power."

Now those same phony threats from yesteryear are being inflated by Trump and Pence into another (GOP) drive for U.S. dominance in space; paid for by the expansion of the nuclear and aerospace industry at the expense of the more pressing and important needs that our politicians aren't willing to provide funding for out of cynical concerns about the effects of deficit-spending.

Pence yesterday:

Trump wants Congress to allocate $8 billion over the next five years for space security systems as it establishes a U.S. Space Force as the sixth branch of the military, Vice President Pence said.

“It’s not enough to have an American presence in space,” Pence said Thursday in a speech at the Pentagon. “We must have American dominance in space. And so we will.”

What's really going on here? There seems to be no limit to aerospace ambitions. The administration is pushing ahead with the expansion of the military space program, despite the limitations of the nation's economy and the adoption of many other costly ‘priorities' for the armed forces.

Between peaceful nations, parity and balance of our respective forces and weaponry is the maxim in our expressions of our defense and security goals. Any open declaration of the need for military dominance is an invitation to a dangerously competitive, world-wide arms race. Such a declaration of U.S. dominance in space threatens to undo the cooperation and peaceful transfer of knowledge and technology between nations which has enabled myriad advances having nothing at all to do with warring or any other military ambition.

The 2002 PNAC document is a mirrored synopsis of the Bush administration's foreign policy today (not so coincidentally with one of its architects, John Bolton, serving as Trump's senior Nat. Security adviser). Pres. Trump is projecting a domineering image of the United States around the world which, in the past, has provoked lesser equipped countries to desperate, unconventional defenses; or resigned them to a humiliating surrender to our rape of their lands, their resources and their communities.

Trump intends for there to be more conquest as the United States exercises its military force around the world; our mandate, our justification, presumably inherent in the mere possession of our instruments of destruction. He is set to unleash unnecessary fear between the nations of the world as he dissolves decades of firm understandings about an America power which was to be seen as guileless in its unassailable defenses. The falseness of our diplomacy is revealed in scrambles for ‘useable', tactical nuclear missiles, new weapons systems, and our new justifications for their use.

Our folly is evident in the rejection of our ambitions by even the closest of our allies, as Trump rejects all entreaties to moderate his manufactured mandate to conquer. Isolation is enveloping our nation like the warming of the atmosphere and the creeping melt of our planet's ancient glaciers.

How far we've fallen

Josh Marshall @joshtpm 2h2 hours ago

This photograph of Ivanka hurling a refugee child over the border wall is chilling. But it shows how far we've fallen.

Kamala Harris: 'We won't be silent about race.'



Sad, Ron Dellums isn't with us anymore


...the former congressman was an inspiration at a time when I first began looking to see who in government actually represented me and my interests.

Repeating an old narrative of mine... when I was a young adult, there were just a few black legislators in Congress, including Ron Dellums, who died Monday at age 82. I still recall the mere handful of blacks I found in Congress when I first explored the Capitol. That didn't change quickly or a great deal over my subsequent years visiting there.

It wasn't until 1990 that we actually saw a significant influx of minorities elected to Congress, enabled by the 1990 census Democrats fought to reform and manage (along with their earlier fight for an extension of the Voting Rights Act which Bush I vetoed five times before trading his signature on the bill for votes for Clarence Thomas) which allowed court-ordered redistricting to double the number of districts with black majorities.

At any rate, I distinctly remember seeing the Rep. Ron Dellums and his nice fro, ever present on the nearly empty House floor, bouncing around here and there with a sheaf of papers in his hand. I had imagined at the time that there were many more like him in the wings, however, there were only a dozen or so black congressmen and women from the 70's to the 90's, including Rep. Dellums.

13 founding members of the newly formed CBC (Ron Dellums, the tallest)

Advantaged by redistricting gains, about 90 African Americans have been elected to Congress since 1971. So, Rep. Dellums was in quite an elite group of groundbreakers and pathmakers.

Rep. Dellums had position on the House Armed Services Committee, and he was a strong advocate at the time for reductions in the military budget, and organized against U.S. war crimes in Vietnam in '71. Dellums also sued George W. Bush over his 1991 military invasion and occupation of Kuwait. Dellums also introduced the first bill calling for sanctions to confront South African apartheid.

It's remarkable just how confident, capable, and determined many black folks like Ron Dellums were in that still dark, but emerging period in our history as they kept their heads well above the water; making leaps and bounds in their personal and professional lives, then, turning right around and giving it all back to their communities in the gift of their expertise and labor.

Ron Dellums was from a generation where the fight for 'civil rights' was an actual and active defense of his rights of citizenship. He grew up in an era where those rights were under daily denial and attack, and emerged as a primary defender of those rights for all Americans; as a marine; as an activist; as a legislator.

That's a beautiful thing, and something we can all emulate in our own lives. Inspire the next generation as Mr. Dellums sought to, by dedicating ourselves to bettering our communities, even as we endeavor to better ourselves.

RIP, Congressman Dellums.

Progressive politics should not be given short shrift in Democratic elections

...reposted from another thread.

I'm sympathetic to the concerns of managing the right wing voters in conservative majority states. Winning is important, and even more so today.

What I'm not understanding is the way primary challenges are being received here. Maybe it does have something to do with the need to mollify conservatives in red states. I'll take folks' word for it.

But here's the thing. Treating progressives in your state like unwanted stepchildren, while giving fealty and political room for conservatives, means that you'll have an increasing reliance on conservative votes, and lessened support from progressive voters.

It's a needless cycle of unnecessary and self-actualizing compromising on Democratic values. That's likely why there are challenges from the left (if they're occurring in your red state). At some point, Democrats need to decide what their party and leaders stand for, outside of getting elected. Even in this perilous moment in history, those values translate into real life consequences for those who can't get their needs represented by their legislators, and transcend elections.

People aren't going to allow their needs to be held hostage to someone's cynical political agenda. Put your political formula for holding a red state seat in front of someone who wanted their Senator or rep to vote for a progressive concern not supported by a conservative electorate. Tell them where in those paragraphs their needs are going to be addressed.

I'd be more concerned, as a candidate, with those in our party who feel our leadership has made political compromises on their lives, than with the prospect that some conservative might not vote for me. That's the way I'd organize my politics. Maybe these conservative state's pols can find a way to assert progressive values and garner support from voters.

It's a mistake, folly to regard progressive challengers as a threat, while giving credence to the idea of mollifying conservative voters. Perhaps the progressive challengers can help advance those progressive ideals in your state, even if they don't prevail over their Democratic challenger, even if they manage to defeat them in the primary.

If they do generate more of a following, it would behoove 'moderate,' conservative Dems to recognize the concerns of their supporters. That's how you build political coalitions and expand your voter base with progressives, not just holding a crap shoot every election hoping appealing to unprincipled and discredited conservative politics and policy for votes wins the day.

Trump's trampling all over Barack Obama's success in increasing NATO spending in 2014

...Merkel and Obama organized an increase in NATO spending in 2014 at the summit in Wales.

The clincher here is that it was in response to Putin's Russia invading and annexing Crimea. Russia was kicked out of what was the G8 for the invasion and occupation.

Of course, Trump was reported in June privately telling G7 members that Crimea belonged to Russia because everyone speaks Russian there, and questioned why the U.S. supported Ukraine, calling the country 'corrupt.' He was also publicly calling for Russia to be readmitted to the world economic body.

Kind of puts his blathering at the NATO dinner about Germany's oil deals with Russian in a curious light. Aside from his strange outburst at dinner about the relationship, what are the organizing principles behind asking our ALLIES to spend more on defense?

It's not as if our own spending on weapons, soldiers, and war is going to decrease as NATO countries' spending rises. That's not even remotely likely to happen. Our nation's military spending is intractably determined by our own interests - public and private appropriations and investments keep America at the pinnacle of every other nation's spending on their defense.

Here's the thing: Trump's pulling away from the decades-long alliances with NATO members without any understanding given to the body that it's part of some U.S. initiative, or some clear shift in policy. It's baffling why he's doing this, except as some kind of corrupt power play, posturing against our allies while sidling up to Russia.

I don't think it's just happenstance, either, that Russia and the key measures of U.S. resolve against Putin's aggression are being trampled all over by Trump's public badgering of our NATO allies. I also don't think he's finished trying to rehabilitate the Russian dictatorship, despite clear evidence they attacked our election process.

The contrast with the manner Pres. Obama went about encouraging more from our allies, to Trump's belligerent display is stunning. Here are his remarks in Wales, in 2014:

Excerpt Remarks by President Obama at NATO Summit Press Conference, 2014

_____We’ve met at a time of transition and a time of testing. After more than a decade, NATO’s combat mission in Afghanistan is coming to an end. Russia’s aggression against Ukraine threatens our vision of a Europe that is whole, free and at peace. In the Middle East, the terrorist threat from ISIL poses a growing danger. Here at this summit, our Alliance has summoned the will, the resources and the capabilities to meet all of these challenges.

First and foremost, we have reaffirmed the central mission of the Alliance. Article 5 enshrines our solemn duty to each other -- “an armed attack against one…shall be considered an attack against them all.” This is a binding, treaty obligation. It is non-negotiable. And here in Wales, we’ve left absolutely no doubt -- we will defend every Ally.

Second, we agreed to be resolute in reassuring our Allies in Eastern Europe. Increased NATO air patrols over the Baltics will continue. Rotations of additional forces throughout Eastern Europe for training and exercises will continue. Naval patrols in the Black Sea will continue. And all 28 NATO nations agreed to contribute to all of these measures -- for as long as necessary.

Third, to ensure that NATO remains prepared for any contingency, we agreed to a new Readiness Action Plan. The Alliance will update its defense planning. We will create a new highly ready Rapid Response Force that can be deployed on very short notice. We’ll increase NATO’s presence in Central and Eastern Europe with additional equipment, training, exercises and troop rotations. And the $1 billion initiative that I announced in Warsaw will be a strong and ongoing U.S. contribution to this plan.

Fourth, all 28 NATO nations have pledged to increase their investments in defense and to move toward investing 2 percent of their GDP in our collective security. These resources will help NATO invest in critical capabilities, including intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and missile defense. And this commitment makes clear that NATO will not be complacent. Our Alliance will reverse the decline in defense spending and rise to meet the challenges that we face in the 21st century.

Fifth, our Alliance is fully united in support of Ukraine’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity and its right to defend itself. To back up this commitment, all 28 NATO Allies will now provide security assistance to Ukraine. This includes non-lethal support to the Ukrainian military -- like body armor, fuel and medical care for wounded Ukrainian troops -- as well as assistance to help modernize Ukrainian forces, including logistics and command and control.

Here in Wales, we also sent a strong message to Russia that actions have consequences. Today, the United States and Europe are finalizing measures to deepen and broaden our sanctions across Russia’s financial, energy and defense sectors. At the same time, we strongly support President Poroshenko’s efforts to pursue a peaceful resolution to the conflict in his country. The cease-fire announced today can advance that goal, but only if there is follow-through on the ground. Pro-Russian separatists must keep their commitments and Russia must stop its violations of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity...

full remarks: https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2014/09/05/remarks-president-obama-nato-summit-press-conference

Barack was all about organizing our allies against Russian aggression. That's a good part of what he relied on to motivate our allies to heightened defense, against Russian aggression, not just U.S. self-interest.

We can be as certain that this president is doing his best to dismantle our NATO alliances, ostensibly, transparently to further Trump's mission to lower our nation's guard - and that of our allies, as well - against continuing, active, possibly escalating Russian interference and aggression in our nations.

The Supreme Court upheld Japanese internment too.


Adam Klasfeld @KlasfeldReports 3h3 hours ago
The Supreme Court upheld Japanese internment too.

...peversely, today's Supreme Court repudiated that 1944 ruling, even as it ignored the clear racial motive in the history of Trump's travel ban and allowed it to stand.

from NYDN:

The Supreme Court quietly overturned its 1944 ruling backing the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II on Tuesday as it upheld President Trump's travel ban.

While formally repudiating Korematsu v. United States, Chief Justice John Roberts also said it was “wholly inapt” to compare Trump’s travel ban to the court’s earlier decision.

Roberts wrote that the “forcible relocation of U.S. citizens to concentration camps, solely and explicitly on the basis of race, is objectively unlawful and outside the scope of presidential authority.”

He added that “Korematsu was gravely wrong the day it was decided, has been overruled in the court of history, and — to be clear — has no place in law under the Constitution.”

Nancy Leong @nancyleong 4h4 hours ago
This is an incredibly disingenuous statement by Roberts. It is bizarre to say that "Korematsu has nothing to do with this case," when Trump literally invoked Japanese internment on TV in 2015 to justify the legality of a Muslim ban.


...so Trump was able to get around the '44 language by claiming 'national security' grounds for the ban (skirting around Robert's 'sole, explicit basis' test). He had repeatedly characterized his travel ban as president and candidate as a restriction on Muslims' travel to the U.S.. Indeed, the first two versions he presented to the courts were rejected by justices on those (religious discrimination) grounds.

There was a similar (mild rebuke) in today's ruling by the fraudulently conservative court, neglecting to restrict the president, but, cautioning him, nonetheless, that their decision ostensively did not address the merits or the value of his travel ban. I guess we'll have to wait a while before an untainted court comes back and overturns this with a ruling in keeping with this nation's true values.

Dan Epps @danepps 5h5 hours ago
Justice Sotomayor says the majority's decision in Trump v. Hawaii is like Korematsu, the Japanese internment decision. Strong words.

Trump began his presidency with a racist ban on Muslim immigration. It morphed into bad policy

...racist policy that, nonetheless, was able to pass the conservative-packed Supreme Court.

The ban they approved, however, is all about the authority of Trump to enact the third version of the order he presented to the courts, and less about the efficacy of the targets of his travel ban. It's still a discriminatory ban, but, unfortunately for the country, it's blatant discrimination by Trump which isn't checked by legislation from Congress or the courts.

The ban's allowed to stand on a 5-4 ruling, with the SC seat republicans stole from Pres. Obama that is Gorsuch, effectively casting a deciding vote. That's not a clear reflection of a divided nation, it's a consequence of the false rule of a Russian-compromised presidency, and an obsequious republican majority.

It's not coherent policy, and it doesn't even comport with Trump's original, racist, xenophobic intent (Muslims are still admitted from nations outside of the ban). It's a scattershot of arbitrary, contradictory targets from an ignorant president. It's not the way we should be presenting ourselves to the world, and it's a shameful example to those nations who would follow Trump's punitive example against their own minority populations.

Despite the numerous instances cited by previous courts of the president and candidate openly disparaging and denigrating one particular group of immigrants on the basis of their religion, under the guise of 'national security,' the Supreme Court's conservative majority ignored those sick words and gave the president wide latitude to define that security threat to the nation, no matter how specious and contrived.

This policy is an abomination which is being forced upon a disagreeing nation by an increasingly autocratic Executive and an anti-American republican majority in Congress. It's going to take a Democratic majority for this nation to return to the values which the majority of us embrace and share.

Reimagining Trump's 'Zero Tolerance' as 1940s Japanese-American Internment Propaganda

NYT Opinion @nytopinion Jun 21
A U.S. government film from 1943 justifying the detention of Japanese-Americans in internment camps has new relevance in light of the president’s immigration policies https://nyti.ms/2loQrvB


Families and children migrating from Mexico are being locked up out of pure bigotry

...there's no other reason for locking up people who pose no threat at all, whose only offense carries the same weight as jaywalking or speeding.

They are jailed as a result of policy which is being openly driven by racist, bigoted, and xenophobic rhetoric - almost daily - from the president of the United States. These prosecutions are arbitrary, egregious, and disproportionate to any actual harm.

Our laws prohibit both individual instances and patterns or practices of discriminatory misconduct, i.e., treating a person differently because of race, color, national origin, sex, or religion. The misconduct covered by Title VI and the OJP (Office of Justice Programs) Program Statute includes, for example, harassment or use of racial slurs, unjustified arrests, discriminatory traffic stops...

Border law is being applied to Mexican migrants in an openly discriminatory manner - that discriminatory harassment being actively led and amplified by Pres. Trump - punishment often dispensed against groups of defendants, in bloc, in court proceedings.

We need a name for this new era of 'Jim Crow,' with racism and bigotry coming down from the highest levels of government, effectively sanctioning all other discrimination under it's umbrella of bias. The term has offensive roots, and doesn't really relate to anything concrete or meaningful, outside of the history it identifies.

I propose 'Trumpean,' 'Trumpish,' or the like. After all, modern history of our government's worst abuses against humanity will forever remember Trump for ripping children from migrant parents' arms in a cynical, punitive extension of his open bigotry.
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