Monthly Archives: June 2009

Liberty Rock Friday: …And Justice for All by Metallica

This song somehow seems appropriate in marking the end of another term of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Metallica
…And Justice for All
…And Justice for All (1988)
justice

Songwriters: Hammett, Kirk L; Hetfield, James Alan; Ulrich, Lars

Halls of Justice Painted Green
Money Talking
Power Wolves Beset Your Door
Hear Them Stalking
Soon You’ll Please Their Appetite
They Devour
Hammer of Justice Crushes You
Overpower

The Ultimate in Vanity
Exploiting Their Supremacy
I Can’t Believe the Things You Say
I Can’t Believe
I Can’t Believe the Price You Pay
Nothing Can Save You

Justice Is Lost
Justice Is Raped
Justice Is Gone
Pulling Your Strings
Justice Is Done
Seeking No Truth
Winning Is All
Find it So Grim
So True
So Real

Apathy Their Stepping Stone
So Unfeeling
Hidden Deep Animosity
So Deceiving
Through Your Eyes Their Light Burns
Hoping to Find
Inquisition Sinking You
With Prying Minds

The Ultimate in Vanity
Exploiting Their Supremacy
I Can’t Believe the Things You Say
I Can’t Believe
I Can’t Believe the Price You Pay
Nothing Can Save You

Justice Is Lost
Justice Is Raped
Justice Is Gone
Pulling Your Strings
Justice Is Done
Seeking No Truth
Winning Is All
Find it So Grim
So True
So Real

Lady Justice Has Been Raped
Truth Assassin
Rolls of Red Tape Seal Your Lips
Now You’re Done in
Their Money Tips Her Scales Again
Make Your Deal
Just What Is Truth? I Cannot Tell
Cannot Feel

The Ultimate in Vanity
Exploiting Their Supremacy
I Can’t Believe the Things You Say
I Can’t Believe
I Can’t Believe the Price We Pay
Nothing Can Save Us

Justice Is Lost
Justice Is Raped
Justice Is Gone
Pulling Your Strings
Justice Is Done
Seeking No Truth
Winning Is All
Find it So Grim
So True
So Real

Seeking No Truth
Winning Is All
Find it So Grim
So True
So Real

Quote(s) Of The Day

One this short, you’d think I was taking it out of context. And if anyone can find justification I’m doing so, let me know. But I just don’t see any way this comment is defensible under any circumstances:

I know that most readers of NRO, like myself, believe completely in creativity and democratic power of the market.

More nonsensical nonsense is rarely spoken. Democracy is majority rule. Democracy is 50%+1 of the viewing public deciding that Jon & Kate Plus 8 is the best show on TV, and all channels immediately moving to a Jon & Kate marathon. Democracy is absolutely, without any qualification, a horrendously wrong way to describe a market.

A market is essentially the situation where no matter what you want, how bizarre or against the grain of “democratic sensibilities”, if you’re willing to pay dearly enough someone will provide the service/product you desire. Case in point? There are actual real, live hitmen. If you have enough money and want it badly enough, somebody will kill another person for you. I don’t see anything democratic about that*.

In fact, the discussion in question is a discussion about a building that the owners want to replace but the elites have decided is too artistically worthy to be demolished. It is, of course, a perfect example of democracy TRAMPLING on a market.

Even worse? She follows it up with this:

But, at the same time, I do not think that the market should be the sole determiner of what we do with our built environment. If that were the case, we would have long ago converted The Mall into parking and the Capitol and White House into loft condominiums.

Maybe it’s just me, but she seems to be saying that like it’s a bad thing? It was enough after the founding to place Washington DC in a fetid swamp — it helped to ensure a short legislative session. But then technologists had to go and invent air-conditioning, ensuring our elected officials could oppress us year-round.

I think if you really want to see what government should do, let Congress meet in Cheyenne Mountain** along with the President. Keep them underground. Isolate them from the echo-chamber of big-government sycophants willing to bend over backwards to gain access to power.

With the advent of air conditioning, DC could be a nice place. Why do we let our government hoard that prime real estate?

Hat Tip: Mises Economics Blog
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ObamaCare: 21st century gerrymandering?

It’s a rare day that I don’t read some story about President Obama punishing some financial institutionauto manufacturer or responsible party for not playing along with his political agenda.  It’s fairly common knowledge that the elderly are more likely to vote Republican than Democrat. While the main stream media seems ignorant of the fact, common sense dictates any insurance or public health care program will try to control costs by limiting the services and products available to patients. We now know how Obama feels about rationing health care for the elderly. As Matthew Vadum puts it:

So, old people: screw you. In the future Uncle Sam will put you on an ice floe and let you float away to your heavenly reward. It gives new meaning to the Latin phrase “Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori.” (In English, How sweet and glorious it is to die for one’s country.)

“If it’s my family member, it’s my wife, if it’s my children, if it’s my grandmother, I always want them to get the very best care, ” President Obama said Wednesday night in response to being asked if he would allow his family members to have their health care options limited by government.

“We’re not going to solve every single one of these very difficult decisions at end of life,” Obama said while evading another answer on end-of-life care. “Ultimately that’s going to be between physicians and patients.”

He failed to mention that he would be the one controlling the purse strings available to the physicians and patients he mentioned.

Tying this all together, we know that end-of-life medical care costs are disproportionately high, the government already rations health care to the elderly and will be forced to do more of it should they take over a greater portion of the industry, Obama rewards his friends and punishes his enemies — and that the elderly are more likely to vote Republican than younger people.

Not that I’m suggesting that Obama would try to control the outcome of future elections by rationing health care options, but think about it. Reward some favored constituency here and punish some disfavored one there, especially if Paul is a Democrat and Peter is a Republican.  And the easiest target of all for health care rationing would be senior citizens who tend to vote Republican.

SCOTUS Returns to Sanity in School Strip Search Case

It seems that most of the time the U.S. Supreme Court is divided 5-4 on what should be very basic Constitutional principles (such was the case I wrote about in my most recent post). But once in awhile, SCOTUS does the unthinkable and actually upholds the Constitution. In Safford Unified School District #1 et. al. v. Redding, the court ruled 8-1 that the school district had violated then 13 year-old Savana Redding’s Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable searches.

Reuters Reports:

“Because there were no reasons to suspect the drugs presented a danger or were concealed in her underwear, we hold that the search did violate the Constitution,” Justice David Souter wrote for the court majority.

The school’s policy prohibits the use, possession or sale of any drug on school grounds, including prescription and over-the-counter medications. A week before the search, a student became sick after taking pills from a classmate and said certain students were bringing drugs to school.

Following an assistant principal’s orders, a school nurse had Redding remove her clothes, move her bra to the side and pull her underwear out, exposing her breasts and pelvic area, to see if she was hiding any ibuprofen pills.

[…]

Only Justice Clarence Thomas dissented from the part of the ruling that Redding’s privacy rights had been violated.

Thomas said the ruling “grants judges sweeping authority to second-guess the measures that these officials take to maintain discipline in their schools and ensure the health and safety of the students in their charge.”

While the court agreed that the school district violated Redding’s privacy rights, only Justices Ginsburg and Stevens believed the school administrators should be held liable; the remaining Justices believed that prior to this ruling, the law had not been clearly established.

The ACLU attorney Adam Wolf who represented Redding was also quoted in the article saying: “Today’s ruling affirms that schools are not constitutional dead zones. Savana … is pleased that other students will not have to go through the trauma that she experienced.”

I think we sometimes forget that public school teachers and administrators are actually agents of the government. At times, schools have become “constitutional dead zones” but we should always remember that government agents of all kinds should be expected to respect legitimate rights of students. If the school administrators had good reason to believe that Redding had contraband, they could apply for a search warrant and allow the proper authorities to conduct the search.

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