blueollie

5 June 09 (am)

Yes, I am about to get on the road. Still blogging relaxes me so I’ll do some. :)

President Obama’s Speech

Here is some opinion on it. I love the conclusion:

Before Thursday’s speech, and after, Mr. Obama’s critics complained that he has spent too much time apologizing and accused him of weakening the country. That is a gross misreading of what he has been saying — and of what needs to be said. After eight years of arrogance and bullying that has turned even close friends against the United States, it takes a strong president to acknowledge the mistakes of the past. And it takes a strong president to press himself and the world to do better.

Social Issues

When it comes to abortion rights and the abortion debate, how one sees the world really fixes one’s opinion. If one sees abortion as “murder”, there is no room for compromise. If one doesn’t, then it becomes a privacy/rights issue. How one deals with the “when does the fetus become a separate human being” question affects how one thinks. This issue is explored here.

Right wing nuttery It is illegal to plot for the death of a President or to call for it. But one can pray for it and that is exactly what some social conservatives are doing. In this case, it was Alan Keyes’s running mate, so this guy isn’t a Republican.

Bill O’Reilly: caught either lying or getting his facts wrong:

SUMMARY: Bill O’Reilly falsely claimed that on CNN, “[o]nly Anderson Cooper at 10 o’clock covered the story” of the slaying of Army recruiter Pvt. William Long. In fact, in addition to the coverage on Anderson Cooper 360, CNN covered Long’s shooting on 15 shows from June 1 through June 3.

In either case, you can’t trust what he says (my guess is that it was sloppy “research”).

Judge Sotomayor Law is highly technical and “common people” (myself included) have opinions on our Supreme Court nominee. That doesn’t mean that our opinions of a judge’s decision are valid. Much of the time a judge is NOT deciding “is this a good thing” or “is this law good” but rather “is this consistent with existing law and is the existing law consistent with the Constitution”. Here is but one example of that (and yes, this one of those things that I’ve done out of ignorance):

Buchanan’s attack echoes a claim by the conservative Washington Times that “[t]here is growing evidence that Judge Sotomayor believes some races are more equal than others,” in part because Sotomayor voted to allow a challenge to New York’s felony disenfranchisement law to move forward:

In Hayden v. Pataki, a number of inmates in New York state filed suit claiming that because blacks and Latinos make up a disproportionate share of the prison population, the state’s refusal to allow them ballot access amounts to an unlawful, race-based denial of their right to vote. [...]

Yet, operating on a dubious and extremely broad reading of the Voting Rights Act, Ms. Sotomayor dissented from the decision. In a remarkably dismissive, four-paragraph opinion, she alleged that the “plain terms” of the Voting Rights Act would allow such race-based claims to go forward.

These attacks misrepresent Sotomayor’s decision. First of all, Sotomayor did not “tr[y] to overturn” anything. The majority in Hayden voted to toss several inmates out of court before they could be given a trial to determine whether New York engages in race discrimination. Judge Sotomayor’s dissent—and the 20 page dissent by Judge Parker which Sotomayor joined—said nothing about whether New York violated the Voting Rights Act; the dissents merely argued that the inmates should be given the opportunity to prove their discrimination claims at trial.

More importantly, Judge Sotomayor based her dissent, not on the notion that “some races are more equal than others,” but instead on the radical notion that judges should follow the law as it is written.

Hat tip: the history professor blog Edge of the American West.

More Law: The Legal Satyricon talks about rich, powerful people trying to carve the law to suit them at the expense of the rights of all of us. The issue here is that a rich young woman went joyriding in her daddy’s expensive car, got in a crash and was killed; people took photos of her body and put them on the internet.

Had this been a poor person who had this happen to them, the “privacy issues” of the photos wouldn’t be a legal one (though it would still be an ethical one; just because you CAN do something doesn’t mean that you should).

Read the article; I’ll post a couple of snippets:

But, I’m not prepared to turn my pain into the suppression of the dissemination of lawful material, nor do I want a new law named after my best friend. Shit happens. Sometimes, when shit happens, there is a camera, a witness, a compelling story, and then those of us who were just minding our own business have to suffer the feeling of an ice pick into our hearts every time the needle skips on the vinyl of life. Those with privilege want to use that ice pick to chip away at our constitutional rights – which only further entrenches their privilege. If we let them, by the time they are done, we will have a patchwork of laws created by extreme outlier incidents, pushed for by the overprivileged like me, the Catsourases, and the legal academy – ushered in by a wail of hysterical shrill cries from those who follow them over the cliff.

Then, the 99.99% of other incidents that happen in daily life would be governed by these outlier incidents – slowly turning our entire existence into one that mimics our time in the security line at the airport.

This reminds me a bit of the “overreaction to rare incidents” that I’ve talked about before (in the realm of “saftey”).

But this this paragraph tickled me:

If you live in some dump like Lakeland, Flori-duh, driving your crappy car to your crappy job and coming home to your crappy house and watch your crappy TV with your crappy stained t-shirt on while you look at your crappy ugly redneck wife and your stupid inbred redneck children, it must really suck.

Actually: 1. ALL women eventually get old and 2. I hate silicon and botox. I’d rather have the poorer wife with her fat butt and dimply legs than some mannequin. :) Ok, I want her to be smart, so let’s make that an educated, intellectually interested “all natural” wife. :)

As to the other stuff: sure I get tired of teaching disinterested, mostly untalented snowflakes and I wish I had written a better Ph. D. thesis. But I don’t resent the research professors (those who research full time). I might envy them but I admire their intellect, hard work and creativity.

Oh yeah, I don’t have a fancy car, but I walk to work. :)

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June 5, 2009 - Posted by | 2008 Election, Barack Obama, free speech, Middle East, obama, Personal Issues, politics, politics/social, ranting, religion, SCOTUS, world events

3 Comments »

  1. Mr. Berg,
    Your foolish websites, blogs, lawsuits, etc. about the issue of the President’s citizenship is nothing more than a thin veil to make a mockery on the citizen of the Untied States.
    Currently, Title 8 of the U.S. Code Section 1401 defines the following as people who are “citizens of the United States at birth:”
    • Anyone born inside the United States *
    • Any Indian or Eskimo born in the United States, provided being a citizen of the U.S. does not impair the person’s status as a citizen of the tribe
    • Any one born outside the United States, both of whose parents are citizens of the U.S., as long as one parent has lived in the U.S.
    • Any one born outside the United States, if one parent is a citizen and lived in the U.S. for at least one year and the other parent is a U.S. national
    • Any one born in a U.S. possession, if one parent is a citizen and lived in the U.S. for at least one year
    • Any one found in the U.S. under the age of five, whose parentage cannot be determined, as long as proof of non-citizenship is not provided by age 21
    • Any one born outside the United States, if one parent is an alien and as long as the other parent is a citizen of the U.S. who lived in the U.S. for at least five years (with military and diplomatic service included in this time)
    • A final, historical condition: a person born before 5/24/1934 of an alien father and a U.S. citizen mother who has lived in the U.S.
    * There is an exception in the law – the person must be “subject to the jurisdiction” of the United States. This would exempt the child of a diplomat, for example, from this provision.
    Anyone falling into these categories is considered natural-born, and is eligible to run for President or Vice President. Separate sections handle territories that the United States has acquired over time, such as Puerto Rico (8 USC 1402), Alaska (8 USC 1404), Hawaii (8 USC 1405), the U.S. Virgin Islands (8 USC 1406), and Guam (8 USC 1407). Each of these sections confer citizenship on persons living in these territories as of a certain date, and usually confer natural-born status on persons born in those territories after that date. For example, for Puerto Rico, all persons born in Puerto Rico between April 11, 1899, and January 12, 1941, are automatically conferred citizenship as of the date the law was signed by the President (June 27, 1952). Additionally, all persons born in Puerto Rico on or after January 13, 1941, are natural-born citizens of the United States. Note that because of when the law was passed, for some, the natural-born status was retroactive.
    Perhaps, you should post this good law and statutory language on your website so that the people will grasp a clear understanding about what the law says about what constitutes “citizens of the United States at birth”. But, as expected, you won’t even bother post this law on your websites, blogs or elsewhere, because you know your position regarding the Constitution is patently frivolous; indeed, a fact found by all Courts you have filed papers with.

    Indeed, here is an exceprt from Title 8:

    TITLE 8 > CHAPTER 12 > SUBCHAPTER III > Part I > § 1401Prev | Next § 1401. Nationals and citizens of United States at birth
    How Current is This? The following shall be nationals and citizens of the United States at birth:
    (a) a person born in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof;
    (b) a person born in the United States to a member of an Indian, Eskimo, Aleutian, or other aboriginal tribe: Provided, That the granting of citizenship under this subsection shall not in any manner impair or otherwise affect the right of such person to tribal or other property;
    (c) a person born outside of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents both of whom are citizens of the United States and one of whom has had a residence in the United States or one of its outlying possessions, prior to the birth of such person;
    (d) a person born outside of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is a citizen of the United States who has been physically present in the United States or one of its outlying possessions for a continuous period of one year prior to the birth of such person, and the other of whom is a national, but not a citizen of the United States;
    (e) a person born in an outlying possession of the United States of parents one of whom is a citizen of the United States who has been physically present in the United States or one of its outlying possessions for a continuous period of one year at any time prior to the birth of such person;
    (f) a person of unknown parentage found in the United States while under the age of five years, until shown, prior to his attaining the age of twenty-one years, not to have been born in the United States;
    (g) a person born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is an alien, and the other a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, was physically present in the United States or its outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than five years, at least two of which were after attaining the age of fourteen years: Provided, That any periods of honorable service in the Armed Forces of the United States, or periods of employment with the United States Government or with an international organization as that term is defined in section 288 of title 22 by such citizen parent, or any periods during which such citizen parent is physically present abroad as the dependent unmarried son or daughter and a member of the household of a person
    (A) honorably serving with the Armed Forces of the United States, or
    (B) employed by the United States Government or an international organization as defined in section 288 of title 22, may be included in order to satisfy the physical-presence requirement of this paragraph. This proviso shall be applicable to persons born on or after December 24, 1952, to the same extent as if it had become effective in its present form on that date; and
    (h) a person born before noon (Eastern Standard Time) May 24, 1934, outside the limits and jurisdiction of the United States of an alien father and a mother who is a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, had resided in the United States.

    Comment by primo | June 5, 2009 | Reply

  2. Ok, but what does this have to do with this post?

    Comment by blueollie | June 5, 2009 | Reply

  3. Obama’s speech in Cairo is only the first step in many towards any kind of dialogue with America’s current day enemies. The speech was largely vague and lacking in detail and its effects will only really be seen from the action that follows it both in the US and the Arab world.

    Comment by BraveJeWorld | June 5, 2009 | Reply


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