the blog of DC Drinking Liberally

January 3, 2007

Virgil Goode, Hold Onto Your Head


Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA) went into a xenophobic frenzy over the news that newly elected Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) would use a Koran at a private swearing-in ceremony after the official swearing-in of the new Congress (at which no religious books are used). Goode has refused to back off his warning that Muslims will be taking over the country if we don’t crack down on immigration. How this relates to Ellison, whose family has been in the country for generations, is unclear.

How will Goode react to the news that Ellison has chosen to use a Koran with a special connection to Virginia?

Yet the holy book at tomorrow’s ceremony has an unassailably all-American provenance. We’ve learned that the new congressman — in a savvy bit of political symbolism — will hold the personal copy once owned by Thomas Jefferson.

“He wanted to use a Koran that was special,” said Mark Dimunation, chief of the rare book and special collections division at the Library of Congress, who was contacted by the Minnesota Dem early in December. Dimunation, who grew up in Ellison’s 5th District, was happy to help.

December 29, 2006

Gerald Ford Roundup


December 28, 2006

Christmas Cards and Political Signals


I came home from my Christmas trip to Richmond to find four Christmas cards in my mailbox from politicians (okay, only one actually uses the word “Christmas”, but let’s be real). I’m still trying to figure out what signal some of them are trying to send.

The one from Barack Obama is pretty straightforward. Presumably it’s yet another indication that he’s planning to run for president.


December 19, 2006

DC for Democracy Holiday Party Wednesday


DC for Democracy has its holiday party tomorrow, December 20 (RSVP):

Even though we all got our big gift for the year on Election Day, that’s no reason not to celebrate this holiday season. Join your fellow progressives and toast the new Congress, share cookie recipes, or just chill out with friends. We’ll also be, once again, collecting canned goods and other non-perishable food items to take to the Capital Area Food Bank. For the past two years, members have been incredibly generous and have brought lots of food in to help the homeless — let’s keep that tradition alive in 2006.

Suggested donation $10, or whatever you can give to help support DC for Democracy.

December 20, 2006
From: 07:00 PM until 09:00 PM

Marty’s 527 8th St SE
Contact: dcfordemocracy@gmail.com

Marty’s Restaurant is near the Eastern Market Metro.

December 18, 2006

Amnesty International Film: “Outlawed”


The Cleveland Park chapter of Amnesty International USA is having an “America I Believe In” house party Tuesday, December 19, at 7:30 at the Cleveland Park Library, 3310 Connecticut Ave NW (RSVP):

Outlawed: Extraordinary Rendition, Torture and Disappearances in the “War on Terror” tells the stories of Khaled El-Masri and Binyam Mohamed, two men who have survived extraordinary rendition, secret detention, and torture by the U.S. government working with various other governments worldwide. “Outlawed” features relevant commentary from Louise Arbour, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, U.S. President George W. Bush, Michael Scheuer, the chief architect of the rendition program and former head of the Osama Bin Laden unit at the CIA, and Condoleezza Rice, the U.S. Secretary of State.

“Outlawed” a documentary produced by WITNESS and AI USA in association with 12 other groups worldwide, places the post-9/11 phenomenon of renditions and the “war on terror” in a human rights context and calls for action end these human rights abuses.

December 7, 2006

Join Us for “Bobby” and Yenching Palace Saturday


This Saturday, December 9, Dupont Circle Drinking Liberally will be going to the 7 o’clock showing of Bobby, the new movie about Robert Kennedy, at DC’s last movie palace, the Uptown Theatre, 3424 Connecticut Ave NW (Cleveland Park Metro), which opened in 1933.

Then at 9:30, we’ll head up the street to Washington’s best Chinese restaurant from the time of the movie and see how well it’s surviving the modern era. Yenching Palace (3524 Connecticut Ave NW) was the site of meetings in 1962 between emissaries of JFK and Khrushchev during the Cuban missile crisis and in 1971 between Henry Kissinger and Chinese representatives when Nixon was planning to restore relations with China. Rumor has it that Yenching Palace will be turning into a Walgreen’s before long, so check it out before it’s gone.

If you’re interested in joining us, meet in front of the theater at 6:40, and please e-mail us at dcthu@drinkingliberally.org so we can have some idea how many people will be going to the restaurant.

To keep up to date with DCDL events, subscribe to our e-mail announcement list.

December 5, 2006

50-State Strategy Report at DC for Democracy December 6


Tomorrow, December 6, DC for Democracy has a speaker from the DNC at their monthly meeting in the back room at Ben’s Chili Bowl (RSVP). Sounds interesting:

Join us for our first MeetUp following the groundbreaking mid-term election results. To help us understand exactly how Democrats were so successful in taking back Congress and building a stronger progressive movement throughout the country, we’ll be joined by Parag Mehta, Director of Training for the Democratic National Committee. Parag was instrumental in helping implement the “50 State Strategy” around the country, and will give us an inside look at what happened and what the plans are to continue to build on the gains made this past year.

We’ll also be announcing plans for our upcoming holiday party, and soliciting volunteers to help design our annual winter strategy retreat. And of course there will be chili.

December 06, 2006
From: 07:00 PM until 08:30 PM

Ben’s Chili Bowl 1213 U Street, N.W.
Contact: dcfordemocracy@gmail.com

DCfD is a good group to get involved with, and they’ll soon be determining their priorities for the new year. Stop by and find out more.

November 28, 2006

Nov 30: Frank Schaeffer


Drinking Liberally is pleased to host best-selling author Frank Schaeffer on Thursday, Nov 30 in the back room at Timberlake’s, 1726 Connecticut Ave NW (Dupont Circle Metro stop). Happy Hour starts at 6:30. Mr. Schaeffer will speak about his new book “Baby Jack,” followed by your questions starting at 7:30.

In the novel “Baby Jack” Mr. Schaeffer takes readers into the life of the Ogden family, where intelligent and talented son Jack decides, in the words of his father, to “throw his life away” on the Marine Corps and join that “collection of victims.” Jack joins because of a need inside him that he knows exists, but that neither he nor his family understands.

Mr. Schaeffer (along with Kathy Roth-Douqet) is also the author of “AWOL: The Unexcused Absence of America’s Upper Classes from the Military and How it Hurts Our Country.” His fiction, humor and nonfiction have received international critical acclaim. The Los Angeles Times describes his writing as, “A rich brew of cross-cultural comedy.” The Guardian UK says: “funny and wonderfully observed.” The Times of London says: “Schaeffer describes both the pleasures and occasional torments of childhood with charm and humor.”

November 23, 2006

Thank you


(crossposted at home)

I have a positive Thanksgiving post to offer on the second anniversary of StealthBadger.net, and I’m actually grateful for many things this year.

For my country, there are many people I’d like to thank for the process of democracy that began to show real fruits, and will hopefully continue past the election - the process of revitalizing and inspiring the Democratic party to be more than a machine. I hope that the Dems continue to grow and change, as well as become even more responsive and responsible in both their actions and outlook.


November 10, 2006

Voting Rights Confusion


For those of us who live in the national capital and pay federal taxes but have no vote in the Congress that decides how those taxes are spent, this sounds hopeful, doesn’t it?

U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi said yesterday that she hopes to swiftly bring the District a step closer to full voting rights in the House, a measure D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton called a move in the right direction.

But the article goes on to say that although Norton would be able to vote on changes to legislation, “she would not be able to vote on final passage”. Okay, but that’s still something, right? Wrong. Look at the fine print, a few paragraphs down (emphasis added):

From 1993 to early 1995, Norton and delegates from four U.S. territories were allowed to vote on the House floor in most cases. However, if their votes ever provided the margin of victory on a measure, a House member could request a second, binding vote without them. Republicans nixed the limited vote in 1995, after taking control of Congress.

Pelosi’s press secretary, Jennifer Crider, said last night that the proposed rule changes would seek a return to those provisions. However, she said, Pelosi had not yet specifically addressed the issue of the U.S. territories’ voting rights.

So if Norton’s vote ever actually makes a difference, they’ll re-vote without her. In other words, the whole thing is just symbolism. I realize that Norton has been complaining for more than a decade now about losing this meaningless voting power, but that doesn’t mean that restoring it is anything to rejoice about.


DCDL is a blog by Washington, DC-area members of Drinking Liberally. Opinions expressed are the writers’, not those of Drinking Liberally, which provides no funding or other support for this blog.

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