I was interested to read Robert Stacy McCain's post yesterday on the free speech defense that he and many other conservative media figures are mounting against convicted bomber cum legal terrorist Brett Kimberlin. (If Brett hasn't already printed a novelty t-shirt that says "Lawfare: It's the Bomb!", he is missing out.) But why should mad bombers have a monopoly on the suppression of speech? As usual, our most elite institution of higher education shines light on the path forward.
The Spectacle Blog
UPDATE: It has been widely reported, and was mentioned here by Natalie, that the Koch brothers helped fund anti-UAW efforts in Tennessee. The communications office at Koch Industries recently reached out to us, denying any involvement in the organizing campaign. According to a statement they sent us: "Koch had no involvement, neither directly nor indirectly, with this issue in Tennessee." We regret if we passed along any misinformation. -MP
After the United Auto Workers union’s recent defeat at the Chattanooga, Tenn. Volkswagen plant, the UAW must face the reality of union demise.
Only 6.7 percent of private-sector workers are unionized, compared with 35.3 percent of public-sector employees. Not to mention that in this particular case, UAW membership has dropped from a high of 1.5 million in 1979 to only 382,513 in 2012. The numbers show the waning popularity of unions:
The numbers were reported by Michael Chapman of CNSNews.com:
Lowest Beer Taxes Per Gallon
50. Wyoming, $0.02
49. Missouri, $0.06
48. Wisconsin, $0.06
Premiums, deductibles, claims—health insurance is tricky business and Obamacare only made it more complicated.
Now, with a month and a half left to enroll in the exchanges, states have swallowed up their $60 million federal dollar allotment for personnel needed to help those who newly qualify for insurance figure out how to utilize the insurance they signed up for.
There were, of course, some GOP states that refused the federal funding from the get-go, but now only 12 states and the District of Columbia have any working support system for new enrollees. New people may have insurance, but many have no idea how it works. As Politico reported:
Convicted bomber Brett Kimberlin's federal lawsuit against bloggers and journalists is "an attack on free speech," a prominent First Amendment attorney said Tuesday, announcing that he would represent an anonymous blogger who is a defendant in the case.
Paul Alan Levy of the non-profit group Public Citizen noted that he had once represented Kimberlin, at the time a federal prison inmate, in a case where Kimberlin's First Amendment rights were at stake. However, Levy said, Kimberlin is now threatening the rights of others in his attempt to use a federal lawsuit to obtain the identity of the popular conservative blogger known as Ace of Spades: "Among the defendants in the action is an anonymous blogger whom Kimberlin sued for allegedly 'imputing' that Kimberlin was involved in SWATting. . . . Because the blog post said nothing of the kind, I agreed to represent defendant 'Ace of Spades' in opposing Kimberlin’s request for judicial permission to pursue discovery to identify Ace of Spades."
Rod Dreher calls attention to a physicist, Vlatko Vedral, who claims that the origin of the laws of nature can be explained scientifically:
We believe in one method of understanding the ultimate, secure truth: the scientific method.
Vedral rejects the philosophical objection that scientific explanations for the laws of nature end in infinite regress—whatever causes the laws of nature needs a cause, which needs a cause, ad infinitum. Vedral hands the accusation back to religious philosophers: who created the Creator? God is apparently stuck in the same infinite regress that philosophers accuse scientists of entertaining.
Feature of the Day: You Are Subsidizing a Fancy Beach House That Will Be Destroyed in a Flood
Ah, the church bazaar: The perfect place to bring together Downton’s upstairs and downstairs in pretty pastels.
Alfred proposes to Ivy via letter and when he returns to the area for his father’s funeral, accepts Ivy’s kind refusal. Daisy, of course, finds herself just as devastated by Alfred’s proposal as Ivy’s refusal, but a long picnic with her father-in-law puts her in a better mood. She returns to Downton to give Alfred a goodie-basket and to part as “friends forever.”
But Daisy and Alfred aren't the only divided lovers. Rose, partially out of passion, but mostly out of hatred for her mother, declares that she plans to marry Jack Ross. When Mary hears of the plan, she takes a trip to London to talk Ross out of it—not because she doesn’t wish they lived in a different world, but because they don’t (that and she questions Rose’s motives and sincerity). Ross declares that because he loves Rose, he already decided to end the engagement and seems strangely okay with accepting defeat.
Victims of abortion are also often victims of poverty or loneliness. These women are desperate—many do not have money, a job, a spouse, or even a family to rely upon.
I’ve witnessed this in my work at a crisis pregnancy center in our nation’s capital.
When a “human right” really means the ability to destroy a life out of hopelessness, can we possibly justify the neutral position of “pro-choice”? Doesn’t that simply mean preferring a vile immorality because we don’t know what else to do?
The other issue, of course, involves those who create revenue from abortions. Where there is money, there is an incentive to preserve immorality at any cost.
Many women work in abortion clinics because they believe that women should be able to have abortions; after all, each individual body is autonomous, and thus shouldn’t have to support the “parasite” of a baby. But when these workers and nurses realize the business mission of such places, some leave in disgust.
Tragically, what many pro-choice activists describe as a liberty is also a method of profiteering. Planned Parenthood is an ominous example.
A new analysis by the CBO says that raising the minimum wage to $10.10 as Barack Obama suggests would cost the country half a million jobs, though it would raise some others (those fortunate enough not to be fired) out of poverty.
Expect the left to focus on mythical and magical increases in national wealth due to redistribution, ignoring the unlucky half-million -- most likely to be young and minority workers -- who will be unable to get a job.
The problem for Democrats is that the issue Americans are worrying about most, according to a Gallup poll released last week, is unemployment. Income inequality is not in the list of the top 10 issues cared about by voters.