Saturday, May 30, 2009

Sotomayor For Jury Duty?

Andrew McCarthy asks a great question about the new Supreme Court nominee: Would she be fit to serve as a juror? Prospective jurors are asked a number of times whether they harbor specific biases based on race, sex, etc. Those that do are promptly excused. I would hope this basic standard would apply to the selection of appointed-for-life justices on the nation's highest court. An exerpt:

Would Judge Sotomayor be qualified to serve as a juror? Let's say she forthrightly explained to the court during the voir dire (the jury-selection phase of a case) that she believed a wise Latina makes better judgments than a white male; that she doubts it is actually possible to "transcend [one's] personal sympathies and prejudices and aspire to achieve a greater degree of fairness and integrity based on the reason of law"; and that there are "basic differences" in the way people "of color" exercise "logic and reasoning." If, upon hearing that, would it not be reasonable for a lawyer for one (or both) of the parties to ask the court to excuse her for cause? Would it not be incumbent on the court to grant that request?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

CA Home Bible Study Threatened By Government

What an outrageous abuse of the First Amendment:

SAN DIEGO -- A local pastor and his wife claim they were interrogated by a San Diego County official, who then threatened them with escalating fines if they continued to hold bible studies in their home, 10News reported. Read the rest here.

Expect more of this type of treatment from increasingly hostile government agencies.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Sotomayor Nomination

Obama's first Supreme Court nomination reveals much about his radical view of the Constitution and his desire to remake America according to his liberal imagination. By choosing to nominate Sotomayor, Obama reaffirms his view that judges should ignore the constitution (at least the American one) and engage in policy-making. Sotomayor clearly believes that the bench is "where policy is made."

So we have two broad theories of the American justice system:
1) Judges should be impartial and unbiased, making decisions according to the US Constitution and turning a blind eye to all else.
2) Judges should make decisions based on emotion and partisan political philosophy with an eye to handing out rulings favorable to the chosen few.

The Founding Fathers and nearly all Americans up to about 1950 and most Americans today would probably go with theory #1. Obama, Sotomayor and the Democrat political class are clearly going with theory #2, a choice that undermines the rule of law and threatens to erase much of the unprecedented individual liberty enjoyed by our nation for the last two centuries.

Not much is known about Sotomayor yet, but her involvement in a New Haven firefighters discrimination case should tell us enough. She voted in favor of the lower court's ruling in favor of discrimination, rejecting a 46-page opinion with a solitary paragraph of her own. George Will has some of the details of the case in a Washington Post column last month (the case will soon be heard by the Supreme Court). Suffice it to say that the firefighters involved have the wrong skin color to elicit Sotomayor's fabled sympathy.

Republicans cannot reasonably expect to block her confirmation. The Democrats have the votes. However, Senate Republicans can and must use this opportunity to expose Obama's radical agenda to the American people. Democrats from conservative states need to feel the heat. We need to acquaint the American people with as much information as possible about this and future nominees to the bench. Elections have consequences, but so will will the next one.

Michelle Malkin has much, much more.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

John Hood (The Corner at NRO) shared this passage from Thucydides to commemorate the day:

I believe that a death such as theirs has been the true measure of a man's worth; it may be the first revelation of his virtues, but is at any rate their final seal. For even those who come short in other ways may justly plead the valor with which they have fought for their country; they have blotted out the evil with the good, and have benefited the state more by their public services than they have injured her by their private actions.

None of these men was enervated by wealth or hesitated to resign the pleasures of life; none of them put off the evil day in the hope, natural to poverty, that a man, though poor, may one day become rich. But, deeming that the punishment of their enemies was sweeter than any of these things, and that they could fall in no nobler cause, they determined at the hazard of their lives to be honorably avenged, and to leave the rest. They resigned to hope their unknown chance of happiness; but in the face of death they resolved to rely upon themselves alone. And when the moment came they were minded to resist and suffer, rather than to fly and save their lives; they ran away from the word of dishonor, but on the battlefield their feet stood fast, and in an instant, at the height of their fortune, they passed away from the scene, not of their fear, but of their glory.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Karl Rove Editorial

Karl Rove does a great job of comparing Candidate Obama to President Obama, underscoring the many flip-flops and policy reversals we have witnessed during his short time in office.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Wrong Marriage Debate

Mona Charen at NRO makes the case that our fight against gay marriage has distracted us from a bigger problem: having children without the benefit of marriage:

In fact, as Kay Hymowitz limned in her 2006 book, Marriage and Caste in America, what we really have in this country is a caste system. At the top are the college graduates who nearly always get married before becoming pregnant. At the bottom are poor women of all races and backgrounds who routinely have babies before they marry (if they ever marry).

Friday, May 15, 2009

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Thomas Sowell: The Rhetoric of Torture

Travis posted this story on Facebook today. Sowell makes the point that many Americans have lost the ability to see behind the rhetoric and make true moral distinctions. BTW - did you know that we waterboard our own troops as part of their training? That's a strong indication that this technique, while highly unpleasant, is not torture.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Sunday, May 3, 2009

"Global Warming" Is Over

The actual phrase "global warming", that is. The whole wacko movement bent on the destruction of your modern way of life because of made-up "science"? That's still going strong. Only the names have been changed to hide the guilty. According to the NYT (of all people), environmentalists want to trade in a lot of the old, clunky words and phrases (e.g., "the environment") for fresh, hip lingo (e.g., "the air we breathe, the water our children drink"). This is one of the reasons why we hear a lot more about the craftily ambiguous "climate change" than we do about the embarrassingly unreal "global warming."

Of course, the Times has to make everything "fair" by pointing out that evil oil companies and Republicans do the same thing all the time--always looking for a way to trick people into buying into their diabolical schemes [insert sinister laugh here]. The answer to all this Orwellian newspeak is to properly educate people to think, something that can be done in spite of public indoctrination via schools and media. The fact that "global warming" has become code for "we're going to tax you into oblivion based on a fairytale" shows that the battle is far from lost.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

London Understands Obama

Karen and I have been hooked on British media lately. Here's a sample from the Daily Telegraph:

It's official: Barack Obama is the second most reviled newbie president of the last forty years. A gallup survey today published in the Washington Times shows Obama to have an approval rating of just 56 per cent. The only president to have performed worse than that at the end of his first 100 days in office was Bill Clinton - and only then because it happened to coincide with the spectacular mishandling of the Waco siege, which might reasonably be laid at the door of ATF and FBI incompetence rather than presidential negligence.

Read the rest here.