Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Defense of Marriage Act

Weekend Links

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* Next time you teach, open a window: Elevated carbon dioxide may impair reasoning.

* Solitary Confinement, State by State.

* DOMA ruled unconstitutional, again.

* Gavin Mueller reviews the Onion’s bizarre (but intriguing) reality-TV parody Sex House.

* Douglas Wolk reviews Building Stories.

* On Althusser’s mug shot.

* Scenes from the future: Boy kicked out of school because he has gene for cystic fibrosis.

* And another: After committing a crime with a printed weapon, a person could simply melt down the plastic and reprint it as something as mundane as a statue of Buddha. And guns made of plastic might not be spotted by metal detectors in airports, courthouses or other government facilities.

* And another: Researcher claims feasibility of writing lethal wireless pacemaker viruses.

* The CIA is urging the White House to approve a significant expansion of the agency’s fleet of armed drones, a move that would extend the spy service’s decade-long transformation into a paramilitary force, U.S. officials said. What could possibly go wrong?

* #ObscureSexyHalloweenCostumes.

* We have allowed ourselves to become mired in the habits of oligarchy, as though no other politics are possible, even in a putatively self-governing republic, and resignation is one of the most obvious of those habits. We acclimate ourselves to the habit of having our politics acted upon us, rather than insisting that they are ours to command. TV stars tell us that political stars are going to cut their Grand Bargain and that “we” will then applaud them for making the “tough choices” on our behalf. That is how you inculcate the habits of oligarchy in a political commonwealth. First, you disabuse people of the notion that government is the ultimate expression of that commonwealth, and then you eliminate or emasculate any centers of power that might exist independent of your smothering influence — like, say, organized labor — and then you make it quite clear who’s in charge. I’m the boss. Get used to it.

* Baldwin holds slight lead in Wisconsin. Obama up in Iowa, Wisconsin. Obama’s Lead Falls To 3 In Colorado. Ohio Remains Obama’s Firewall. Why the Gallup poll showing Romney +7 is almost certainly wrong: 1, 2, 3. Why I’d have you vote for Obama just one time more.

Monday!

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* I may have done this one before, but what the hell: the RAW rejection letter.

* RIP, Sally Ride. And here’s the politicized postscript.

* The NCAA drops the hammer on Penn State.

* Justice Department Investigates Pennsylvania Voter ID Law.

* The New Yorker profiles the Boss.

The tune, thick with horns and vocal harmonies, elides into “My City of Ruins,” one of the elegiac, gospel-tinged songs on the 9/11 album, “The Rising.” The voices sing “Rise up! Rise up!” and there comes a string of horn solos: trombone, trumpet, sax. Then back to the voices. Springsteen quickly introduces the E Street horns and the singing collective. Then he says, “Roll call!” And, with the music rising bit by churchly bit, he introduces the core of the band: “Professor Roy Bittan is in the house. . . . Charlie Giordano is in the house. . . .”

When he finishes the roll call, there is a long ellipsis. The band keeps vamping.

“Are we missing anybody?”

Two spotlights are now trained on the organ, where Federici once sat, and at the mike where Clemons once stood.

“Are we missing anybody?”

Then again: “Are we missing anybody? . . . That’s right. That’s right. We’re missing some. But the only thing I can guarantee tonight is that if you’re here and we’re here, then they’re here!” He repeats this over and over, the volume of the piano and the bass rising, the drums hastening, the voices rising, until finally the song overwhelms him, and, if Springsteen has calculated correctly, there will not be an unmoved soul in the house.

* Six facts about guns, violence, and gun control.

* Dibs on the novelization: Zhang and Li write that the the Milky Way will be torn apart 32.9 million years before the big rip. The Earth will be ripped away from the Sun two months before the end, and we’ll lose our moon with five days left. The Sun itself will be destroyed 28 minutes before the end of time, and the Earth will explode a mere 12 minutes later.

* The headline reads, “Neurosurgeons banned from human research for giving infectious bacteria to brain tumor patients.”

* Radiolab says the Greeks didn’t know about blue.

John Scalzi, self-made man.

* Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld go get coffee.

* And Fred Willard is keeping his head up.

Now That Elites Have Changed Their Minds the Constitution Says the Opposite of What It Used to Say

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Written by gerrycanavan

May 31, 2012 at 10:55 am

Here Comes Justice

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Written by gerrycanavan

May 25, 2012 at 9:30 am

Arc of History Watch

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Here, too, this Court finds that Congress cannot, like an ostrich, merely bury its head in the sand and wait for danger to pass, especially at the risk of permitting continued constitutional injury upon legally married couples. The fact that the issue is socially divisive does nothing to relieve the judiciary of its obligation to examine the constitutionality of the discriminating classifications in the law.

A Bush appointee has found DOMA unconstitutional. Your move, Justice Kennedy…

Thursday Evening

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* Aaron Bady has an interesting, informative, and important post on his experiences at the Occupy Oakland general strike yesterday.

* 100,000 at the strike?

* Seven weeks of Occupy, at In Focus.

* Imagine what it’s like to be a normal student nowadays. You did well—even very well—in high school. But you arrive at university with little experience in research and writing and little sense of what your classes have to do with your life plans. You start your first year deep in debt, with more in prospect. You work at Target or a fast-food outlet to pay for your living expenses. You live in a vast, shabby dorm or a huge, flimsy off-campus apartment complex, where your single with bath provides both privacy and isolation. And you see professors from a great distance, in space as well as culture: from the back of a vast dark auditorium, full of your peers checking Facebook on their laptops.

It’s no wonder, in these circumstances, that many students never really internalize the new demands and standards of university work. Instead they drift from course to course, looking for entertainment and easy grades. Nor is it surprising that many aren’t ready when trouble comes. Students drink too much alcohol, smoke too much marijuana, play too many computer games, wreck cars, become pregnant, get overwhelmed trying to help anorexic roommates, and too often lose the modest but vital support previously provided by a parent who has been laid off. Older students—and these days most are older than traditional university age—often have to work full-time and care for children or parents, or both. Those likeliest to encounter these problems are also the ones who haven’t been schooled since birth to find the thread that can lead them through the labyrinths of the bureaucracy. They aren’t confident that they will see an invitingly open door, where a friendly adviser or professor is eager to help them, and they don’t have parents hovering, eager to find that helper for them.

* How could a late entrant still shake up the Republican field? Nate Silver reports. You already know my thoughts on this.

* One-half of Floridians believe the GOP is intentionally sabotaging the economy. Gee, you think? On the one hand, I’m surprised the number is so high; on the other, I’m amazed there’s anyone who can’t see this…

* Mars 500 wraps up this week. io9 says it doesn’t prove anything.

* Corporations against DOMA.

*  A Utah man who claimed to be an illegal immigrant from Mexico to avoid going to prison is now wanted by police after he returned to the United States and acknowledged his true identity to a judge.

* If episodes of fission at Fukushima were confirmed, Mr. Koide said, “our entire understanding of nuclear safety would be turned on its head.”

* This week we celebrate 100 years of dropping bombs on people from planes.

* Two great tastes (okay, one): The Muppets on WWE Raw.

* Will John Edwards walk?

* And the headline reads, “Cash-strapped Chicago mulls easing marijuana law.” Do the right thing for the wrong reasons if you have to, just do it…

‘A Blatant Attempt to Grant Amnesty to Potentially Millions of Illegal Aliens in This Country’ (And God Bless It)

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It looks like Obama has given up hope on any sort of grand compromise on immigration; he’s ending deportations for people who pose no threat to public safety, at least on a prioritized, case-by-case basis. Deserved praise from Adam Serwer and Steve Benen.

Again–given that the Defense of Marriage Act is still in force, the decision to treat LGBT families as families for the purposes of this policy is incredibly significant. This decision is precisely the kind of ballsy move that liberals are constantly demanding that the administration make. For once–and let’s not pretend the Latino vote in 2012 isn’t a part of the political calculus here–they’re actually doing it.

I imagine the terrible optics of this story had something to do with the decision too.

Maybe he’s finally learning.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 20, 2011 at 7:12 pm