Former Supreme Court Justice Speaks Out

As you may know, Sandra Day O'Connor recently retired as a Supreme Court Justice. Even more recently, at a Georgetown University speech she warned that the US was in danger of "edging towards dictatorship". What a kook.

In other news, a a judge recently ruled against two men in a secret ruling that even their defense lawyers were not allowed to read. This just goes to show that O'Connor is nuttier than a fruitcake.

The FBI no longer needs subpoenas to gather information on you. A field supervisor merely writes up a "National Security Letter" and agents use that to demand information about you from universities, libraries, ISPs, and so on. Of course, those who receive the National Security Letters are forbidden from ever mentioning it. The FBI is cranking out an estimated 30,000 letters per year and there is no judicial review of them. Just a field supervisor writing up whatever his or her agents want.

That O'Connor: what a kidder, eh?

In other news, Republican Senator from Kansas, Sam Brownback, wants to run for President. Here's his vision:

In his dream America, the one he believes both the Bible and the Constitution promise, the state will simply wither away. In its place will be a country so suffused with God and the free market that the social fabric of the last hundred years -- schools, Social Security, welfare -- will be privatized or simply done away with. There will be no abortions; sex will be confined to heterosexual marriage. Men will lead families, mothers will tend children, and big business and the church will take care of all.

Bill Frist gave this guy a plum seat on the Judiciary Committee. Senator John McCain praised Brownback as the man who derailed Harriet Miers Supreme Court nomination (Brownback attacked her because she was not solidly anti-abortion). Pat Robertson and the retired Jesse Helms support and praise this man. The Christian Right has already lined up behind this man as their candidate. He probably won't get the Republican nomination. Probably. He already has a hell of a lot of influence.

Hello America. You're getting what you asked for.

  • Current Mood: scared scared
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Are you certain that you should write things like this BEFORE you're well out of the country?

what i don't understand is why the Christians don't let the US go to hell in a handbasket - the sooner it does, the sooner Jesus comes back and meets them in the sky and sets the rest of us on fire! Unless they don't really believe ...ooooooh.
Thanks, now I'm afraid that people are coming to get me. I'm jumping when the door bell rings and it's your fault.
Reading that doesn't even make me feel safe over here.

Even worse, Canada's newly elected Prime Minister and all of his cronies are very right of centre. They dressed themselves up in the last elections as moderates and actually fooled a significant portion of the population, and others were dooing what they would call "strategic" voting, by voting against someone else (but not doing their homework on who they were voting for.

The only think that let's me sleep at night is they have weakest mandate in Canadian history.
The first time Bush was elected (i.e., at the end of his first term), he had one of the weakest mandates of US history and look what he's done!
I saw a t-shirt yesterday that said Clinton screwed a few people, Bush is screwing everyone!
Just a point, both times clinton was elected, more voted against him than for him.
That's not necessarily the case. In both elections, Clinton received less than half of the cast ballots. Ross Perot drew substantial percentages of the vote in those elections and though he probably drew more from Bush and Dole than from Clinton, it's unclear if he actually did. In 1992, it's possible that's what happened, but in 1996, it's not.

In 1996, Clinton was popular enough that he outpolled Dole and Perot combined. Assuming that every single one of Perot's supporters would have gone for Dole (unlikely), Clinton still would have won. If only a handful of Perot's supporters would have voted for Clinton, he would have broken the 50% mark. However, given that the US elections are a broken first past the post system, it can be extremely difficult to divine the true will of the voters.

Of course, this has nothing to do with the Bush administration's dismantling of our freedoms :(
The was meant to be a reply to one of your posts above, and not to the main entry, sorry. I agree with the broker plurarity election point, stupid but simple. But I did state and you agreed, Clinton had more people voting aginst him; if they were voting for him, they would have cast thier vote for him and not Perot.

As to Bush and company and the travesty they've perpetrated, no disagreement here. The mind spins as to how he can call himself a republican and still have done all that he has.....
But I did state and you agreed, Clinton had more people voting aginst him; if they were voting for him, they would have cast thier vote for him and not Perot.

I know this is going to sound nit-picky, but that's not what I said. Not voting for Clinton is not the same thing as voting against him. This is a type of modus tollens fallacy.

if p, then q
not q
therefore not p

Restated for the current case: Is person X wanted to vote for Clinton, they would have cast ballots for him. Since person X did not cast ballots for Clinton, they did not want to vote for him.

That's a subtle but common logical fallacy which occurs when folks fail to take into account other causal effects for q. When dealing with a modus tollens argument, no additional information can be inferred from in the basic information presented. Additional information is needed. In this case, there are plenty of reasons why someone would want to vote for a candidate other than Clinton without specifically wanting to vote against Clinton (sorry. I just like to be precise).

But we're definitely on the same page about Bush. There are definitely conservatives out there who I can admire and support. Bush ain't one of them.