Politics, Technology, and Language

If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought — George Orwell

Archive for December 10th, 2006

If Afghanistan is liberated, why are teachers getting killed for teaching?

Posted by metaphorical on 10 December 2006

Two teachers and three other members of their family were killed by Taliban gunmen this weekend. According to an AP article, “Teachers receive a warning, then a beating, and if they continue to teach must be killed.”

Rule No. 24 forbids anyone to work as a teacher “under the current puppet regime, because this strengthens the system of the infidels.” One rule later, No. 25, says teachers who ignore Taliban warnings will be killed.

Taliban militants early Saturday broke into a house in the eastern province of Kunar, killing a family of five, including two sisters who were teachers.

The women had been warned in a letter to quit teaching, said Gulam Ullah Wekar, the provincial education director. Their mother, grandmother and a male relative were also slain in the attack.

The two sisters brought to 20 the number of teachers killed in Taliban attacks this year, said Education Ministry spokesman Zuhur Afghan. He said 198 schools have been burned down this year, up from about 150 last year.

The 30 Taliban rules also spell out opposition to development projects from aid organizations, including clinics, roads and schools.

“If a school fails a warning to close, it must be burned. But all religious books must be secured beforehand,” rule No. 26 says.

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Pleased no violations of the law were found? Pleased?

Posted by metaphorical on 10 December 2006

As we wait for the Democrats and the 110th Congress to begin in January, let’s remember that in the 109th, the minority party didn’t exactly abstain from earmarks, boondoggles, or ethics violations.

So when we look at this, are we seeing the dying gasp of Republicans, putting their own malfeasances to bed while still the majority party, or is it a harbinger of demoralizations to come? Here’s a clue, 110th Congress. We didn’t elect you to make sure laws weren’t technically violated. Start doing the right thing, or you’ll go the way of the 109th.

Panel blasts Hastert in Foley scandal

WASHINGTON – Former Rep. Mark Foley was described as a “ticking time bomb” for his sexual come-ons to male pages, but Republican lawmakers and aides for a decade failed to protect the teenagers vulnerable to his advances, the House ethics committee concluded Friday. Despite that finding, the panel said no rules had been broken and no one should be punished.

The committee harshly criticized Speaker
Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., saying the evidence showed he was told of the problem months before he acknowledged learning of Foley’s questionable e-mails to a former Louisiana page. It rejected Hastert’s contention that he couldn’t recall separate warnings from two House Republican leaders.

Hastert said he was pleased the committee found “there was no violation of any House rules by any member or staff.”

Hopefully we the voters can’t be so easily pleased.

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