Posts Tagged ‘libertarians’
* CFP: New Directions in Sherlock.
* Amazing moment: Northwestern University athletes have filed for union representation with the NRLB. Now, I don’t think they’ll get it — so the really interesting question is what happens when they don’t.
* Rabon, a veterinarian, said he believes House Bill 930 is too weak. He said its standards for humane treatment could too easily be interpreted by a judge to apply to livestock as well as pets. “It can’t spill over to the animal husbandry in this state, which is an $80 billion industry – larger than the other top five industries in the state,” he said. “There is a LOT of money involved.”
* Freddie deBoer has a nice demonstration of how statistics don’t always tell you as much as you think.
* Instead of guaranteeing that poor undergraduates can get through college debt-free, the University of Virginia decided it’s going to make low-income students borrow up to $28,000.
* BREAKING: The past isn’t done with you yet.
With lethal-injection drugs in short supply and new questions looming about their effectiveness, lawmakers in some death-penalty states are considering bringing back relics of a more gruesome past: firing squads, electrocutions and gas chambers.
* Five years into his presidency, Obama has finally issued an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contracts. Can solving climate change be far behind?
* “Academic freedom” is a funny phrase: New York bill to punish ASA over Israel boycott picks up 48 supporters.
* The crisis is over! Colleges are rich again!
* BREAKING: Austerity politics don’t work. No one could have predicted!
* A bit on the nose, don’t you think? Birds Attack Peace Doves Freed From Pope’s Window.
* Let kids be kids: Chaos may reign at Swanson Primary School with children climbing trees, riding skateboards and playing bullrush during playtime, but surprisingly the students don’t cause bedlam, the principal says. The school is actually seeing a drop in bullying, serious injuries and vandalism, while concentration levels in class are increasing.
* And some linkbait I can never resist: 22 Unbelievable Places that are Hard to Believe Really Exist.
* EU copyright on Joyce works ends at midnight. Who weeps for Stephen Joyce?
* The parallel reality — the undeniable fact — is that all of these listed heinous views and actions from Barack Obama have been vehemently opposed and condemned by Ron Paul: and among the major GOP candidates, only by Ron Paul. For that reason, Paul’s candidacy forces progressives to face the hideous positions and actions of their candidate, of the person they want to empower for another four years. If Paul were not in the race or were not receiving attention, none of these issues would receive any attention because all the other major GOP candidates either agree with Obama on these matters or hold even worse views. Of course Greenwald has a point, but at the same time it’s difficult to argue with this:
But (you might say) if the result is the same–if, whatever the twisted origins of his position, Ron Paul takes is on the side of the angels on certain narrowly framed issues–does it really matter how he gets there?
Short answer: yes. Slightly less short answer: hell yes. Longer answer: of course, because his opposition to (Federal) government overreach is inseparable from his opposition to Roe v. Wade and equal protection enforcement and environmental regulation and…well, every single goddamn thing that matters to liberals except the tiny set of narrow issues on which, in stopped-clock fashion, Paul has arrived at the right position through the wrong process.
During the Montgomery bus boycott, mainstream media outlets interviewed black folks who were against it and talked about how the boycott was misguided and hurt the local economy. The day after the boycott started, the Montgomery Advertiser ran a story featuring the manager of the bus lines saying that bus drivers were being shot at and rocks were being thrown at them.
During the rest of the civil rights movement, protesters who were fire-hosed and otherwise brutalized were called “violent protesters” in the mainstream media, which again featured interviews with people saying that the protests were wrongheaded.
During the Anti-Vietnam War movement, the mainstream media portrayed protesters as out of touch, violent, and dirty. There was a picture in the San Francisco Chronicle of a guy who was throwing back a tear gas canister that had been shot at the peaceful crowd. This was shown as proof of protesters being wild, out of touch, and violent. The Black Panther Party had free breakfast programs and was beloved worldwide — but every mainstream media outlet that covered it, covered it negatively.
There has never been any strike, work stoppage, or union action that was supported by the mainstream media at the time that it was happening.
The mainstream press didn’t support the Anti-Apartheid movement and doesn’t support the boycott, disinvestment and sanctions movement for Palestine.
The mainstream press is always on the wrong side of history because it’s always on the side of the status quo, which is capitalist exploitation and oppression.
* And just because it’s New Year’s Even: The 40 Best Memes of 2011.
* University 2.0: MIT launches MITx.
* Gorbachev: What happened after the Soviet Union ended in 1991? Why were the opportunities to build what Pope John Paul II called a more stable, more just and more humane world order not realized?
* Chinese Century watch: China to put an taikonaut on the Moon.
* More ’12 election chaos in the making: Gary Johnson’s Libertarian Leap Could Complicate New Mexico in 2012. Here’s Obama’s game plan, with Virginia (okay) and North Carolina (uh-oh) as linchpins.
So, there’s this girl. She’s tragically orphaned and richer than anyone on the planet. Every guy she meets falls in love with her, but in between torrid romances she rejects them all because she dedicated to what is Pure and Good. She has genius level intellect, Olympic-athelete level athletic ability and incredible good looks. She is consumed by terrible angst, but this only makes guys want her more. She has no superhuman abilities, yet she is more competent than her superhuman friends and defeats superhumans with ease. She has unshakably loyal friends and allies, despite the fact she treats them pretty badly. They fear and respect her, and defer to her orders. Everyone is obsessed with her, even her enemies are attracted to her. She can plan ahead for anything and she’s generally right with any conclusion she makes. People who defy her are inevitably wrong.
God, what a Mary Sue.
I just described Batman.
* And even conservatives hate SOPA. I think that’s everyone.
* Dibs on the film rights: “Scientists say Earth once had a 2nd Moon.”
* Unbelievably, we’re still playing “Is Health Care Reform Constitutional?” Today’s entrant is Dawn Johnsen with The Simple Case for the Affordable Care Act’s Constitutionality.
* Was the Tea Party bluffing? Steve Benen reports. As has been stated here frequently both in the main posts and the comments, these conversations inevitably run aground on the assumption that Obama was playing against the Tea Party. Of course he was, to an extent—but he was primarily using them as political cover to enact cuts he genuinely wanted to enact. To say Obama “left something on the table” in the negotiations fundamentally misunderstands his goals.
* Life in Hell: ‘Man heard his eyeballs rotate, heart beat.’
* Cartoon of the day: The 24 Types of Libertarian.
* Tumblr of the day: Mad Development, mashing up quotes from Arrested Development with images from Mad Men. (Her?)
* And your sublime panorama of the day: the northern and southern night skies, in a single image.
Right-winger Peter Thiel is paying 20 young people $100,00 not to go to college. Via Inside Higher Ed.
Matt Yglesias catches libertarian Sasha Volokh arguing that it would be immoral to use tax dollars to prevent an asteroid from destroying all life on earth.
I think it’s O.K. to violate people’s rights (e.g. through taxation) if the result is that you protect people’s rights to some greater extent (e.g. through police, courts, the military). But it’s not obvious to me that the Earth being hit by an asteroid (or, say, someone being hit by lightning or a falling tree) violates anyone’s rights; if that’s so, then I’m not sure I can justify preventing it through taxation.
ThinkProgress unloads on Florida Judge Roger Vinson in anticipation of his likely ruling against the ACA.
A second decision striking down part of the Affordable Care Act should not surprise anyone, as Vinson has already suggested that he is not moved by the unusually strong legal arguments supporting the law’s constitutionality. In an earlier opinion denying the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss this case, Vinson relied on a number of discarded libertarian legal doctrines that were abandoned by the Supreme Court more than 70 years ago. At one point, he even cited favorably to a completely discredited decision holding a child labor law unconstitutional.
Moreover, Vinson’s judicial superiors are far less likely to take a narrow view of the Constitution. Conservative Justice Antonin Scalia acknowledges that Congress has broad authority to enact comprehensive legislation regulating a national market such as the market in health insurance, and even Chief Justice Roberts recently joined an opinion suggesting that he would uphold the Affordable Care Act.
My sources tell me that this is the lawsuit to watch as it makes it way through the courts; the decision rendered by Judge Hudson earlier in the week is much more a sideshow.
Firefighters in Obion County, Tennessee, watched as Gene Cranick’s house burned to the ground because Cranick wasn’t current on his $75 “subscription” fee.
* First Pluto, now this. They can have my triceratops when they pry it from my cold, dead hands.
* In a “historic crossover,” the costs of solar photovoltaic systems have declined to the point where they are lower than the rising projected costs of new nuclear plants, according to a paper published this month.
* Charlie Stross: …I postulate that the organization required for such exploration is utterly anathema to the ideology of the space cadets, because the political roots of the space colonization movement in the United States rise from taproots of nostalgia for the open frontier that give rise to a false consciousness of the problem of space colonization. In particular, the fetishization of autonomy, self-reliance, and progress through mechanical engineering — echoing the desire to escape the suffocating social conditions back east by simply running away — utterly undermine the program itself and are incompatible with life in a space colony (which is likely to be at a minimum somewhat more constrained than life in one of the more bureaucratically obsessive-compulsive European social democracies, and at worst will tend towards the state of North Korea in Space).
In other words: space colonization is implicitly incompatible with both libertarian ideology and the myth of the American frontier. Worth noting, as some of Stross’s commenters do, that there was a fairly large organized state apparatus supporting westward expansion too, including the railroads and military-backed “Indian removal”…
* The free market! What can’t it do?
“The bottom line is: I’m not an expert, so don’t give me the power in Washington to be making rules,” [Rand] Paul said at a recent campaign stop in response to questions about April’s deadly mining explosion in West Virginia…“You live here, and you have to work in the mines. You’d try to make good rules to protect your people here. If you don’t, I’m thinking that no one will apply for those jobs.”
* Robert Reich: Why We Really Shouldn’t Keep the Bush Tax Cut for the Wealthy. I can’t believe this is even being argued about. Weren’t we at Debt Con 1 just a few days ago?
* And North Carolina in the news! Former federal prosecutor practiced on suspended law license.
* Signs of the apocalypse: Judd Apatow Brewing Up New Pee Wee Herman Movie.
* I confess I’ve been fascinated by the revelation that the Research 2000 polling agency has apparently committed fraud against Daily Kos. There’s loads of additional coverage on this at Nate Silver’s site.
Should your tax dollars be used to pay police to remove people from private businesses solely because the proprietor doesn’t like the color of their skin?
… this whole debate is not one between those who would prefer a society free of state interference versus those who think that some state interference is warranted, but a debate over what kinds of rights should have priority.
The libertarian answer in this instance is that property rights trump civil rights, and that the state should prioritize enforcing those.