The dogs and cats and birds knew it was a dragon. But nobody was scared because it never, ever moved.

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Its seems like there was some unwarranted trumpeting on the right by a few bloggers who thought they caught Borders being Muslim fundamentalists appeasers for not carrying the issue of Free Inquiry that featured comics about Mohammed. The truth be told, Borders is run by a right-wing conservative that didn't carry the cartoons out of fear, possibily because of some nibbling on the bottom line, and because he's not a fan of secular humanism (which Free Inquiry promotes as a philosophy). The issue is probably going to be a big seller so there's no sense in a  chain of book stores owned by a conservative adding a few more readers to a magazine devoted to rationalism; right? HT to The Reality Based Community. ( Note the commenter at American Digest who takes the letter seriously and is outraged that Americans are dieing in Iraq to protect freedom of expression. One can imagine the writer taking out ear plugs, removing pith helmet and blind fold just long enough to write the comment. Its probably very lonely in that bunker.)

In the second, if you count yesterday as the first post on Democrats and progressive ideas, let's take a look at tax policy, A Fair and Simple Tax System for our Future: A Progressive Approach to Tax Reform

Tax Each Source of Income the Same. Each source of income – whether from dividends, capital gains, wages, or salaries should be taxed according to the same progressive rate structure. This would reverse the radical direction of our current tax system, and it would ensure that a nurse or firefighter who receives his or her income through hourly work would not face a higher average tax rate than a wealthy investment banker who receives passive income from accumulated or inherited wealth.

Reduce the Dependence on Regressive Payroll Taxes. The payroll tax has played an important role in our tax system by providing revenue to meet our nation’s commitment to retirees. Yet the payroll tax is also among the most regressive in our overall tax system. We propose removing the employee component of the Social Security payroll tax, immediately reducing by 6.2 percent the tax rate all Americans pay on the first $90,000 of earnings. At the same time, we propose removing the cap on the payroll taxes paid by employers, making income above the current cap subject to the employer-side tax, thus making the remaining payroll tax less regressive. To maintain our full commitment to financing Social Security, we would dedicate a portion of general revenues to the Social Security trust fund. By setting aside 2.25 percent of gross domestic product per year, we would solidify the financial status of the Social Security system closing half of the current long-run shortfall but in a fairer, more sustainable manner.

I'll try an do something on progressive ideas for the next few days. I think liberals discuss ideas all the time, but since we're not the majority party on the federal level the mainstream media tends to dismiss them as not worth writing about. 

At Last, Movies to Keep Arrive on the Internet, on which someone beat me to the punch, Movies for the Rich and Impatient. There's a socialogoical study ripe for picking, the correlation between wealth and impatience.

Don't cry for him he is now officially a martyr, DeLay Is Quitting Race and House, Officials Report

In an interview Monday night, Richard Cullen, Mr. DeLay's principal criminal defense lawyer, also said that his client had been pondering a withdrawal from the race for some time but that "it had nothing to do with any criminal investigation."

"The decision had absolutely nothing to do with the investigation," Mr. Cullen said. "It was a very personal decision and a political one."

Clue theme from The Twilight Zone.

Rightie wombats having wet dreams about liberals and axe handles. TBogg, You got a chickenhawk on your back, boy. A commenter there reminds everyone that the axe handler in question is inordinately fond of having tirades where the male appendage is used to slap people with, so never fear the axe is just symbolic. No scratch that, be concerned, very concerned.

To Become an American

Beyond the purely economic issue, however, there is the much deeper one that defines America — to itself, to its immigrants and to the world. How do we want to treat those who are already in this country, working and living with us? How do we want to treat those who come in on visas or guest permits? These people must have some hope, some reasonable path to becoming Americans. Otherwise we are sending a signal that there are groups of people who are somehow unfit to be Americans, that these newcomers are not really welcome and that what we want are workers, not potential citizens.

Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D) is a nut, has always been a nut, and will always be a nut. Now she has seen fit to engage in some good old fashioned corruption, McKinney Admits Misusing Taxpayer Money. In her own words, why McKinney needs some lithium and and a home nurse, Goodbye to All That. There are some bits of truth in her little essay, her including those truths in with her conspircal delusions does them a great disservice.

No matter how hot the day, however, the children would always play in the gentle, rolling meadows. With wide brimmed hats and skin slippery with sun block, they chittered and chattered like sparrows, as they frolicked in their favourite spot.

Now, their favourite spot is very important to this story because in this particular spot is a large, long, scaly rock that looks amazingly similar to a sleeping dragon.
The children knew it was a dragon.
The grown ups knew it was a dragon.
The dogs and cats and birds knew it was a dragon.
But nobody was scared because it never, ever moved.

from the children's short story The Dragon Rock by Ellena Ashley