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Tag Archives: national
On Saturday October 15th 2011 Occupy Fort Lauderdale marched in solidarity with the national Occupation movement that touched the country from Alaska to Hawa…
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The leftright political spectrum is a system of classifying political positions, ideologies and parties. Left-wing politics and right-wing politics are often presented as opposed, although a particular individual or group may take a left-wing stance on one matter and a right-wing stance on another. In France, where the terms originated, the Left has been called “the party of movement” and the Right “the party of order.” The intermediate stance is called centrism and a person with such a position is a moderate.
There is general consensus that the Left includes progressives, communists, social-liberals, greens, social-democrats, socialists, democratic-socialists, civil-libertarians (as in “social-libertarians”; not to be confused with the right’s “economic-libertarians”), secularists, and anarchists, and that the Right includes conservatives, reactionaries, neoconservatives, capitalists, neoliberals, economic-libertarians (not to be confused with the left’s “civil-libertarians”), social-authoritarians, monarchists, theocrats, nationalists, Nazis (including neo-Nazis) and fascists.
The terms “left” and “right” appeared during the French Revolution of 1789 when members of the National Assembly divided into supporters of the king to the president’s right and supporters of the revolution to his left. One deputy, the Baron de Gauville explained, “We began to recognize each other: those who were loyal to religion and the king took up positions to the right of the chair so as to avoid the shouts, oaths, and indecencies that enjoyed free rein in the opposing camp.” However the Right opposed the seating arrangement because they believed that deputies should support private or general interests but should not form factions or political parties. The contemporary press occasionally used the terms “left” and “right” to refer to the opposing sides.
When the National Assembly was replaced in 1791 by a Legislative Assembly composed of entirely new members, the divisions continued. “Innovators” sat on the left, “moderates” gathered in the centre, while the “conscientious defenders of the constitution” found themselves sitting on the right, where the defenders of the Ancien Rgime had previously gathered. When the succeeding National Convention met in 1792, the seating arrangement continued, but following the coup d’tat of June 2, 1793, and the arrest of the Girondins, the right side of the assembly was deserted, and any remaining members who had sat there moved to the centre. However following the Thermidorian Reaction of 1794 the members of the far left were excluded and the method of seating was abolished. The new constitution included rules for the assembly that would “break up the party groups.”
However following the Restoration in 1814-1815 political clubs were again formed. The majority ultraroyalists chose to sit on the right. The “constitutionals” sat in the centre while independents sat on the left. The terms extreme right and extreme left, as well as centre-right and centre-left, came to be used to describe the nuances of ideology of different sections of the assembly.
The terms “left” and “right” were not used to refer to political ideology but only to seating in the legislature. After 1848, the main opposing camps were the “democratic socialists” and the “reactionaries” who used red and white flags to identify their party affiliation.
With the establishment of the Third Republic in 1871, the terms were adopted by political parties: the Republican Left, the Centre Right, and the Centre Left (1871) and the Extreme Left (1876) and Radical Left (1881). Beginning in the early twentieth century the terms left and right came to be associated with specific political ideologies and were used to describe citizens’ political beliefs, gradually replacing the terms “reds” and “the reaction” or “republicans” and “conservatives”. By 1914 the left half of the legislature was composed of Unified Socialists, Republican Socialists and Socialist Radicals, while the parties that were called “left” now sat on the right side.
There was asymmetry in the use of the terms left and right by the opposing sides. The right mostly denied that the leftright spectrum was meaningful because they saw it as artificial and damaging to unity. The left, however, seeking to change society, promoted the distinction. As Alain observed in 1931, “When people ask me if the division between parties of the right and parties of the left, men of the right and men of the left, still makes sense, the first thing that comes to mind is that the person asking the question is certainly not a man of the left”
The terms left and right came to be applied to British politics during the 1906 general election, which saw the Labour Party emerge as a third force.
The sociologist Robert M. MacIver noted in The Web of Government (1947):
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Viscount Davignon, Bilderberg: Foreigners have more faith in Romania’s development capability than Romanians
Viscount Etienne Davignon, chairman of Bilderberg Group, held a press conference late Friday on the future of Europe before high officials, bankers and private sector representatives at the National Bank, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Romanian Association for the Club of Rome. According to zf.ro, the leader of the financial group was optimistic about Europes future and said about deeply skeptical Romania that Our conclusion is that there is no alternative to what we are doing; we must go forward, we are obliged to by everything we have achieved so far. People outside Romania have more faith in Romanias development capability than Romanians themselves. Professor Ugo Bardi, an influential member of the Club of Rome, held the opening speech at the conference, drawing attention to the economys dependence on mineral resources. People keep talking about the financial crisis, but they are forgetting that economy is the science of material things. Banks also create resources, but the economy depends on mineral resources. The last decade has experienced a decrease in mineral resources production and an increase in prices. The price of mineral resources has tripled in the last ten years and the price of petroleum has quadrupled. It has become a growing burden for countries that do not own mineral resources. Overall, the European Union s petroleum and gas imports amount to USD 500 M, which is 4 percent of GDP. The price going up involves additional expenses of 1 percent of the GDP for the same quantity, and this plays an important part in the crisis, although it is rarely taken into account. For instance, Italys fossil fuel imports are 4-5 percent of GDP, while mineral resource imports are 7 percent of GDP. From this point of view, Romanias outlook is slightly better, as fossil fuel is only 2 percent of GDP , Davignon pointed out. In his speech, Viscount Etienne Davignon emphasized that there is no alternative path for Europe to a deeper integration. The cost of euro absence could result in the EU losing several percentages of the GDP. We must keep eliminating transactional costs in the hope that we are going down the road set after World War Two, the road of economic integration, Davignon said. To a degree, he continued, Europe has forgotten its roots that it is essentially a Union. It has forgotten that Europe was a ruined continent after the war, and something completely different from the power balance of the past needed to be invented.
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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Louisiana’s revenue department won’t recognize same-sex marriages for tax filings, despite a new IRS rule that allows legally married gay couples to file joint federal tax returns and a Louisiana law requiring taxpayers to use the same filing status on state and federal tax forms.
Revenue Secretary Tim Barfield said Louisiana can’t recognize a same-sex marriage tax filing because of its constitutional ban on gay marriage, according to a document outlining the state’s position and obtained Friday by The Associated Press.
The revenue secretary – appointed by Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal, a gay marriage opponent – takes the position that Louisiana’s constitution trumps a state law that directs taxpayers to use the same status on state tax returns that they use on federal returns.
“Louisiana’s secretary of revenue is bound to support and uphold the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, and any recognition of a same-sex filing status in Louisiana as promulgated in (the new Internal Revenue Service rule) would be a clear violation of Louisiana’s Constitution,” Barfield writes in his guidance to taxpayers.
Approved by lawmakers and voters in 2004, the state constitution defines marriage as between a man and a woman and declares a legal status of marriage for any other couples “shall not be valid or recognized.”
Barfield writes that a gay couple filing as married on a federal tax return must file a separate Louisiana return as single or head of household, not recognizing the marriage as legitimate in Louisiana. That could deprive same-sex couples of any tax benefits that are granted specifically to married couples in the state.
“The taxpayer must provide the same federal income tax information on the Louisiana State Return that would have been provided prior to the issuance” of the IRS ruling, Barfield writes.
The U.S. Treasury Department and the IRS issued their new rules two weeks ago, saying all legally married gay couples will be able to file joint federal tax returns even if they reside in states that do not recognize same-sex marriages.
The decision was designed to implement the tax aspects of the Supreme Court’s decision in June that invalidated a section of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act.
At least 13 states allow same-sex marriages, while another 35 prohibit them, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
A federal appeals court cleared the way for same-sex marriages to begin in California. Opponents of gay marriage are crying foul, however. NBC’s Gabe Gutierrez reports.
By Jeff Black, Staff Writer, NBC News
The legal team behind Proposition 8, Californias gay marriage ban, on Saturday filed an emergency motion asking the U.S. Supreme Court to block a flurry of weddings that began weeks before manythought possible because of a surprising federal appeals court ruling.
Lawyers with the Arizona-based Alliance Defending Freedom claim in a petition that 9th Circuit Court of Appeals acted too early and and unfairly when it let same-sex marriage resume in California on Friday.
Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Austin Nimocks wrote that the Supreme Court’s consideration of the case is not over because his clients still have 22 days to ask the justices to reconsider their decision, saying that Proposition 8′s backers did not have legal authority to defend the ban.
The filing took place as hundreds of same-sex couples were lined up to get marriage licenses in San Francisco where it was Gay Pride Weekend — and other cities around the state.
Click here to read the emergency motion filed Saturday
Today’s petition asks the Supreme Court to find that the Ninth Circuit had no jurisdiction to order same-sex marriages on Friday since the case had not yet come back down from the nation’s highest court, the attorneys wrote in a statement.
We see this as illegitimate and lawless, John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, told NBC News. The 9th circuit had no jurisdiction to lift its stay.
But John Davidson, the legal director at Lambda Legal, which supports same-sex marriage, disagreed.
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Palestinian children play near a section of the controversial Israeli barrier in Shuafat refugee camp in the West Bank near Jerusalem. Photograph: Reuters/Ammar Awad
Despite the resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians, Israel has added a number of outlying West Bank settlements to a list of communities entitled to special government funding.
Ninety settlements were included on the new national priority areas map approved by the government yesterday, entitling the communities to government grants, infrastructure investment, tax breaks and other benefits.
Four dovish ministers abstained in the vote, including environment minister Amir Peretz, who criticised the decision because it contradicts this period of efforts to advance peace.
Among the new settlements eligible for special financial assistance are the isolated communities of Rehalim, Bruchin and Sansana, considered illegal outposts until the government changed their status to fully fledged settlements.
Illegal settlements The international community considers all of the 121 West Bank Jewish settlements, home to 350,000 Israelis, illegal under international law.
The future of the settlements will be a core issue when Israeli and Palestinian negotiators resume peace talks in Israel next week. Israel wants to keep the majority of settlers by annexing the main settlement blocs to Israel and handing over parts of Israeli territory to the Palestinians in a land-swap deal.
The new map includes 600 towns and regions as priority areas. The original aim of the national priority list was to divert funds to poorer communities, particularly development towns on Israels periphery. However, the settler lobby has added West Bank Jewish communities to the list, citing national security criteria.
Justice minister Tzipi Livni, who heads Israels team at the peace talks, abstained in the cabinet vote, saying the national priority map was intended to advance the national interest, not political interests. Its inappropriate to take funds intended to tackle socioeconomic gaps and use them to support outlying settlements in dangerous areas, she said.
Zehava Galon, leader of left-wing opposition party Meretz, called on the Knessets legal adviser to investigate the government decision.
Jean-Marc Giboux / for NBC News
Laura Hartman, left, and her partner, Anne Dickey, walk along the Mississippi River with their three-year-old son, Theodore, in Davenport, Iowa, on July 13. They live across the river in Rock Island, Ill., where same-sex marriage is not legal.
By Miranda Leitsinger, Staff Writer, NBC News
ROCK ISLAND, Ill. — The right to get married for some lesbian and gay couples is mere miles away, or just a hop across the river.
Take same-sex couples in western Illinois, who upon crossing the Mississippi River enter Iowa, where gay marriage was legalized in 2009. Gay and lesbian couples living in states like Nebraska, Oregon, West Virginia, Virginia, New Jersey and Pennsylvania experience similar frustration: an easily traversed body of water separating them from a slew of rights and recognition. For them, marriage is close but out of reach — a reality that didnt change despite recent Supreme Court decisions advancing gay rights.
You feel the freedom, said Dennis Henry, 65, of traveling to his home state of Iowa from Monmouth, Ill., where he lives with his partner, Larry Shaw. You cross this divide, the Mississippi River, and you get over there and you’re a full-fledged American citizen with the same rights everybody else in the country has.
And then you have to turn around, come back, and you leave them. You leave those rights, added Shaw, 67. The couple has been together nearly 35 years.
The high court in June struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, effectively ordering federal recognition of same-sex marriage in the 13 states where it is legal, and opening access for those couples to more than 1,100 federal benefits theyd been previously denied. The court also declined to weigh in on a case challenging Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples in California. Gay and lesbian couples resumed marriage ceremonies there on June 28.
But like Shaw and Henry, a majority of the nations 650,000 same-sex couples live in one of the 35 states where same-sex marriage is banned, mostly by voter-approved constitutional amendments. Four states allow civil unions, including three that — like Illinois — dont permit gays and lesbians to tie the knot, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Another three states that ban same-sex marriage allow domestic partnerships.
(The) constitutional amendments have made America a house divided, in which families on one side of a border are denied crucial protections and personal dignity that they can see on the other side of the border, and this is intolerable, said Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, which campaigns for LGBT rights. Americans should not have their families vulnerable and their marriages sputter in and out like cell phone service depending on what side of a border they find themselves.
The truth about Occupy Boston How Occupy Boston almost lost the support of the National Lawyers Guild. By: Cherie King
Thomas Vanek Highlights | Left Wing No.26 | Buffalo Sabres
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