WWII Internment Revisionism Destroyed By Newly Found Document

A high-level document from WWII has been discovered that openly admits the reason for internment of Japanese-Americans in WWII (~70% of them US Citizens) was not for national security reasons, but because of political pressure--which was mounting toward racist violence.  (Not that the violence itself concerned them.)

The handwitten note at the bottom of a letter dated July 23, 1942, by John McCloy, FDR's assistant secretary of war to Robert Patterson, undersecretary of war, (typed in the available file copies) reads:

These people are not 'internees' -- they are under no suspicion for the most part and were moved largely because we felt we could not control our own white citizens in California.
McCloy was a key player in the iternment, and a defender of it after the fact, who has been used in recent renewed attempts to justify it--and thus justify extreme measured by Bush/Cheney in destroying basic rights in the War on Terra.  The note utterly contradicts McCloy's later claims, and with it, the entire revisionist thesis.

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A Teachable Moment--What Is Racism Today?

America is haunted by the ghost of its racist past. The vast majority of Americans today are not racists and are justifiably upset if they are accused of racism.

Yet, despite the absence of racists, racism persists.  Blacks earn less than whites--and not just because of poorer education. I'm talking about blacks and whites doing the same jobs, with the same level of qualifications. Adding insult to injury, white people's money goes farther. They get loans more easily, get mortgages and buy houses more easily, live in neighborhoods where retail prices are lower, etc. Middle class blacks have far less in savings than middle class whites with the same income levels.

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Site Fix Needed For Recommended Diaries

Okay, It's MY diary ("Beyond Incompetence") that's up there in the recommended list, long after something more recent should have taken it's place.  So I hope this will carry a bit more weight, since I'm not complaining about someone else.

Something needs tweaking.  I don't know what, because I don't know the algorithm used. But something has to be done.  Or perhaps something more than the algorithm--such as 5 recommended slots vs. 3. Or even two recommended lists--one tuned for faster turn-over.

Beyond Incompetence--It LOOKS Like A Setup!

Unbelievable! From Bob Harris.com, visually summarizing a discussion at Tom Tommorrow's This Modern World and Chris Floyd's Empire Burlesque.

I posted before about Bush's August 26 emergency order, but didn't look closely at the list of parishes to see that it didn't include Orleans! or any other coastal parrish! Reading the fine print it seems possible Bush was setting Nagin up! Read on...

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Blame-Shifting--The Buses

As the never-responsible-for-anything crowd shifts into overdrive, one of their key focal points continues to be the 500 buses (others say 200) that were not used to evacuate people from New Orleans.  The fact that they were not used to do this is supposed to shift the blame to Mayor Nagin.

As usual, when dealing with Rovian spin, the attack is simple, the defense, not so much.  Simple lies vs. complex truths. From Creationism to "evildoers" to flight-suit Santa, who could blame Rove for liking those odds?

So, I'll suggest a disarming response, which segues into a full-scale explanation for the reality-based community. I welcome feedback, and will rewrite it if people have better suggestions.

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Roberts Nomination--An Historic Aberration

Excellent. Also, read this useful essay on the power of the Chief Justice. Further, the start of the hearings on Roberts have been moved back to Monday at noon, so I'm back in Philly for now--Chris

Sixteen previous men have served as Chief Justice. A quick survey of all 16 shows that all of them had a more substantial public record than John Roberts. If G.W. Bush had an extraordinary record of appointing talented unknowns, then perhaps we could overlook this aberration. But with hundreds, perhaps thousands of bodies scattered throughout New Orleans, trust in Bush's appointments is justifiably low.

Going Nuclear With The Stealth Candidate

After the worst week in the Bush presidency-yes, worse than 9/11-he has the audacity to up his stealth nominee to the Supreme Court into a nominee for the top seat-Chief Justice.  There were already abundant reasons to oppose Roberts for any seat on the Court. So it was completely typical for Bush to take a dubious (at best) nominee, and try to elevate him even further.  

There have been 16 Chief Justices in American history, and--as will be seen below--every single one of them had a significantly more extensive public record than this nominee.  What's more, one Chief Justice only served a single interim term, because the Senate refused to confirm him, and three other nominees withdrew because the Senate would not confirm them.  Taken all together, the historical record shows Roberts to be an extreme aberration, who should be rejected out of hand.

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Civil Rights Hero John Lewis Calls 4 Urban Marshall Plan

In a Newsweek op-ed, 'This Is a National Disgrace', civil rights hero John Lewis, Lewis, Congressmember from the Fifth District of Georgia recalls his own experience, our history, and the glaring contrast between how we go to war vs. how we care for our own cities.  We need a Marshal Plan, not just for New Orleans, Lewis writes, but for urban America as a whole, with New Orleans as a model:
I was headed to New Orleans as a Freedom Rider in May of 1961. It would've been my first visit, but we were arrested in Jackson, Miss., and never made it. In happier times, though, I have been able to visit New Orleans over the years. It's one of my favorite cities, one of the great Southern cities....

It's very painful for me to watch and read about what is happening. I have a sense of righteous indignation. I think all Americans should rise up and speak out. It's not like 9/11 that just happened. We saw this in the making....

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What Is Liberalism?--#4B: The Argument 4 Religious Freedom

Frontpaged at My Left Wing.

The Argument for Religious Freedom: Part 4 in a series based on the entry for Liberalism in the Dicionary of the History of Ideas. [Series recap w/links at end of diary]

Part 4A made seven main points:

 (1) Luther's "priesthood of all believers, though it had precursors, signaled a new departure, radically re-centering religious authority within the individual conscience.

 (2) Luther's hold on his own principle was ambiguous and contradicted by his own practice.

 (3) The extreme "relativism" of today-even to the point of post-modernist interpretations-was present at the beginning with Luther, though of course not realized.

(4)  Castellion's De haereticis, an sint persequendi, published in 1554, was the first defense of tolerance supported by explicitly liberal ideas. There are three liberal arguments Castellion advances, which we can amplify as follows:

 (5) God is merciful, and nurturant. He does not punish men for not meeting impossible standards.

 (6) We can't substitute ourselves for God. Belief must be sincere, to be acceptable to God. But only God can know who is sincere.

 (7) The spiritual condition of the believer is a prime concern. It cannot simply be trumped by claiming "true faith." All that we can do, as mortals, is to try to support one another in our own spiritual quests.

[New stuff on the flip...]

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What Is Liberalism?--#4: The Argument 4 Religious Freedom--Part A

Frontpaged at My Left Wing

The Argument for Religious Freedom: Part 4 in a series based on the entry for Liberalism in the Dicionary of the History of Ideas.

In the introductory diary, I made a series of big points. In Part 2, I made just one big point: that liberalism developed as a pragmatic response to the context of the modern state.

In Part 3, a similar point: that liberty of conscience--starting with and centered on religious belief--emerged as a liberal value in response to historical developments.

Here we look more at the detailed working out of what has already been described more broadly-that tolerance developed first as pragmatic necessity, then as a positive principle.

On close inspection, the positive principle of tolerance was there from the beginning of the Reformation, but it was highly ambiguous, and was sharply contradicted in practice. It was only after the pragmatic necessity was realized that the positive principle firmly took root.

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What Is Liberalism? Part 3: Liberty of Conscience

Frontpaged at My Left Wing.

Liberty of Conscience: Part 3 in a series based on the entry for Liberalism in the Dictionary of the History of Ideas.

In the introductory diary, I made a series of big points. In Part 2, I made just one big point: that liberalism developed as a pragmatic response to the context of the modern state. 

In this diary, the point is similar: that liberty of conscience--starting with and centered on religious belief--emerged as a liberal value in response to historical developments. The separation of church and state had its origins in the way in which state and religious power were separate long before there was anything like liberalism in the West. The importance of religious faith was used to justify persecution much more intensely before it came to justify toleration. And tolerance emerged first as a matter of pragmatic necessity, only later becoming a positive value.

Text and comments below the fold...

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