A.M. Links: Day 3 of Obamacare Oral Arguments Begin, Newt Gingrich Fires One-Third of His Campaign and Replaces Them With Twitter, California Dem Accused of $7 Million Fraud


  • Last day of Obamacare oral arguments, SCOTUS weighs severability, Medicaid expansion.

  • Newt Gingrich is going to use Twitter to make a brokered convention
  • California Democratic treasurer busted for stealing $7 million.
  • Poll: America likes Mitt Romney more than Rick Santorum; wants Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich to drop out.  
  • Sanford cops originally requested an arrest warrant for George Zimmerman, but the State Attorney's office kiboshed it
  • Shocker: Women voters not crazy about Republicans. 
  • Joe Biden attacks Romney for "sending jobs overseas." 

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New at Reason.tv: "Constitutional Thunderdome: Day Two of Obamacare Oral Arguments"

NEXT: 32 Percent Favorable of New Health Care Law; 50 Percent Unfavorable

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  1. Get back to work, John.

    1. O-C-D,
      Easy as 1-2-3.
      Simple as you're crazy
      O-C-D, 1-2-3, baby you're loony!

  2. Opposing view: 'Stand your ground' is misunderstood

    Some individuals argue that the "stand your ground" defense has opened the door to a free-for-all shooting gallery. This is simply not true. Although the number of justifiable homicides in Florida has more than doubled since "stand your ground" was passed in 2005, the rate of violent crime in the state deceased by 23% from 2005 to 2010, according to FBI statistics. This is not to say that the "stand your ground" law in itself caused the decrease, but it certainly was a factor.

    1. Some individuals argue that the "stand your ground" defense has opened the door to a free-for-all shooting gallery.

      Those are the same people who feel that allowing people to own guns causes murder, and they won't be satisfied until the only people who can lawfully arm and defend themselves are agents of the state.

      1. More Lefty political pimping in the Trayvon case? Shocked, I tell you; shocked.

    2. crime is down all over the nation foo
      >it triez moar harderz

      1. And personal carry is up all over the nation.

        1. cracker's right!

      2. I would personally like to thank Orrin for taking time off from his busy schedule writing YouTube comments so that he can drop these soft and scenty pellets of wisdom here at H&R.

        1. dont bother me when im listening to jazzradio

      3. Which only makes me wonder if the stats are being juked.

    3. Might part of the issue be that previously criminal killings are now considered justifiable?

      It could be as simple as arithmetic.

      1. I might phrase it as "justifiable killings were previously considered criminal", but yeah.

        1. potato:potato

      2. Quetzalcoatl|3.28.12 @ 9:26AM|#
        Might part of the issue be that previously criminal killings are now considered justifiable?

        It could be as simple as arithmetic.

        Maybe you mean as simple as semantics.

        redefining statistics to claim 'significant' change has to be the most common method of number funging, and I've seen them all.

        unsurprisingly, its most popular amongst politicians, police, & the military, although academics are by no means guiltless. Actually, everyone does it really. Some more disingenuously than others. Some people are just morons.

  3. UK: Why should fat people take precedence over the elderly in the NHS?

    f rationing is acceptable, though, scapegoating is not. And too much evidence points to the elderly being the scapegoats in the battle to save the NHS. As the Telegraph reports today, elderly patients are being denied the best cancer care. The figures are alarming: lack of treatment is contributing to 14,000 deaths a year among the over-75s. Men and women are dying prematurely each year because their diseases are diagnosed later and less likely to be operated on.

    welcome to our future! or present... *mumble mumble*

    1. Paul Kruman says those horror stories are not true. That every industrialized country in the world has better health care than we do. I guess that is true, if you don't count how they treat the old and the sick.

      1. so the US leads in life expectancy?

        1. There is more to life expediency than health care. The US has a high murder rate, that has nothing to do with health care. The US also has millions of people who are members of minority groups that have a predisposition to things like diabetes and sickle cell. Since the populations are not the same, you can't judge the health care system by life expectancy.

          Well you can, but you would be an deceitful idiot for doing so. Try harder.

          1. you would be an deceitful idiot for doing so

            I would be shocked if a lefty ever presented an argument that wasn't intellectually dishonest.

            1. They can't help it since they are all retarded.

          2. simple questions for simple minds
            (good band name tho)
            >oh yea - answer is no

          3. Death via car accident is also much higher here due to us driving more.

            1. due to us driving more awesomer!


        2. No, in pork and pork-related products.
          Which would you choose?
          Americans overwelmingly choose BACON.

          1. did someone say bacon?

        3. Life expectancy is not solely a function of medical care. Accidents, murder, and lifestyle choices affect the number as well. So, the U.S. life expectancy does not necessarily mean that "X" country's health care system is better.

          1. Accidents, murder, and lifestyle choices affect the number as well.

            Which only proves that government does not have a sufficient role in peoples' lives, or else it would be preventing accidents and murders, while controlling lifestyle choices.

            More government can fix* anything.

            *by "fix" I mean "ruin"

            1. but guns doesnt kill pepple peeple kill peeple moar wignut lie from the glen bick croud

              1. Wow. You are amazingly stupid. Can't you ever invent a alias that isn't retarded?

                1. u responded to a spoof!

                  1. What, are you fucking five years old? Grow up

          2. Wealthy people can afford to eat more life-threatening foods. When was the last time somebody died from rice?

        4. Demographics makes comparisons nearly impossible.

          1. u responded to a spoof!

            1. What, are you fucking five years old? Grow up

              1. Never!

      2. I will point out the example I always do that proves him wrong.

        If you cut off your hand anywhere in the world, you want to be flown to Jewish Hospital (or University - Kleinert Kutz is based out of Jewish, but they do work at University too) in Louisville to put it back on.

        If these other countries have such great health care, how come the leader in hand surgery is here?

        Since 1960, more than 1,200 physicians from 58 countries have been trained as Hand Fellows in advanced microsurgical techniques in our Institute.

        ^^This^^ is the kind of thing we could lose if we adopt a system similar to the rest of the world.

        1. It's the Jews, obviously.

        2. Cutting-edge medical care must be sacrificed to the insatiable God of Equality, for it is better to make band-aids available to all than to have miraculous hand re-attachment for some.

        3. Jewish Hospital - The Worldwide Leader in Hand Jobs.

          1. It's funny because my dad works there, and he gives terrible hand jobs.


        Why won't you play with me?

        1. In 1793, she was executed under the guillotine for the assassination of Jacobin leader Jean-Paul Marat

    2. This is what Total State Healthcare gets you: the perpetual war of all against all, as various constituencies fight it out in the negative-sum game of political rationing.

      1. Once the government mandates broccoli consumption and regular exercise (it's only good for you and saves $$$, after all), the war will no longer be necessary, and all of the king's subjects will live happily, and healthily, ever after. If we would only let the enlightened liberals give us this nirvana!

        1. Daily exercise in the common yard. It connects the community. Otherwise people would be bowling alone.

          1. hey o3
            u mean dead is dead right?1
            >damn euro trash dominating life expectancy w their commie health carez!

        2. First the government will mandate the purchase of broccoli, subsidizing it as necessary, then, when people don't eat their broccoli, they will create a new agency to force people to eat their broccoli and another agency to crack-down on the black market for resale of subsidized broccoli. Eventually, local garbage collectors will be formed into a national union in order to monitor the little people to make sure they don't simply through their broccoli away. Of course, GHWB set the precedent that says that the POTUS doesn't have to eat broccoli.

          1. needs moar "theys"

        3. But what about when President Santorum decides that the risks of unmarried sex are driving up costs, and forces single women to, each year, prove they are virgo intacta, or else they'll have to pay a fine?

          1. ....and forces single women to, each year, prove they are virgo intacta, or else they'll have to pay a fine?

            Good bye deficit!

          2. so we can't even use Mr Buzzy?

            1. green initiatives will take care of that

          3. Chastity belt mandate?

  4. Sanford cops originally requested an arrest warrant for George Zimmerman, but the State Attorney's office kiboshed it.

    At some point this is going to go away, right? We're going to find another shiny object to grab us?

    1. Quick, someone put Romney in front of a camera!

      1. I'm not shiny. Especially through the pyjamas.

    2. Uhh... Whoever said white girl disappearance is right. We need a pretty, yet wholesome white 19 year old to go missing on her way home from volunteering at the no-kill animal shelter.

    3. Squirrel! Sexting! Hoodies! OWS! Guns! Obamacare! Smoking! Slut! Peanut allergies! Iran! Newclear Titties! War on Women!

  5. Regulating carbon won't help anything

    Count me as one of the Republicans Carter referenced whose attack on the Environmental Protection Agency regulations will be "swift and certain." The reasons for not regulating carbon have been the same for years, anchored by the uncertain cost-benefit of doing so. Even if you accept the entirety of climate change as pseudo-religion, America's unilateral action will have zero effect on achieving the climate that Democrats want us to have.

    etc etc

    1. "climate change as pseudo-religion,"
      it ignores 6 iceages and 6 melts

      1. Since the industrial revolution?

  6. The Trayvon Martin Tragedies
    The recent killing of Trayvon Martin needs more investigation. But where's the outrage over the daily scourge of black-on-black crime?

    The shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida has sparked national outrage, with civil rights leaders from San Francisco to Baltimore leading protests calling for a new investigation and the arrest of the shooter.

    But what about all the other young black murder victims? Nationally, nearly half of all murder victims are black. And the overwhelming majority of those black people are killed by other black people. Where is the march for them?

    1. There isn't any leverage to be gained by engaging in Grievance Theater on black-on-black crime, so no Jackson, Sharpton, et al.

      If those who profess to represent the black community actually cared about the black community (in the sense of strengthening it, making it viable, productive, and valuable) then this is the first issue they would tackle. But they don't, because if they did it would risk the fame and fortune they gain by being able to engage in Grievance Theater.

      1. Don't forget Obama he is as much a race hustler as Sharpton or Jackson.

      2. Blaming whitey requires no personal change. The liberal message always absolves people of personal responsibility.

        1. but but da SPLC says teh NBPP is teh racist!

    2. The shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida has sparked national outrage, with civil rights leaders from San Francisco to Baltimore leading protests calling for a new investigation and the arrest of the shooter.
      But what about all the other young black murder victims?

      Wait, you mean the famililes of the five young Negroes shot and killed by their own in Chicago last week weren't invited by the Dems to testify before Congress yesterday also?

      1. Aaaahaaaa!

    3. the overwhelming majority of those black people are killed by other black people

      That perpetuates the stereotype that young blacks are violent thugs, and that's racist.

      1. sarcasmic|3.28.12 @ 9:29AM|#

        the overwhelming majority of those black people are killed by other black people

        That perpetuates the stereotype that young blacks are violent thugs, and that's racist.

        The thing is...the overwhelming majority of people killed are killed by someone they know. And in our country, many neighborhoods/areas have social networks that are still largely race-based/ethnicity-based. So, the chances that someone will be killed by someone who identifies as the same race they do is much higher than the chances that they will be killed by someone who identifies with a different race.

        What could be seen as racists is an attempt to use this largely pedestrian fact as a way to shift the narrative.

        1. That is a good point except for one problem. White people are much more likely to be killed by a black person than black people are likely to be killed by a white person.

          If what you were saying were the full story, this wouldn't be the case.

          1. White people are much more likely to be killed by a black person than black people are likely to be killed by a white person.

            Who said it was the full story?

            It is true like 90% of black murder victims are killed by black murderers. Slightly lower for white-on-white murder(like 85%, iic).

            But again, the attempt to control the narrative around this particular incident is interesting. Those who are trying to point out that "young black male = suspicious" is a problem we need to address in our society are not ignoring the black-on-black crime problem. Using the black-on-black crime canard as a counter to that perpetuates the very problem. Even if ALL murders in the US were committed by young black males, most young black males would not be dangerous murderers.

          2. Additionally, the demographics are still in play in explaining the fact you assert. Whites are much less embedded in "the black community" generally than blacks are embedded in the white community.

            The demographics are clear your murderer is much more likely (3 to 1 ish) to be someone you know than a suspicious stranger of any race.

            1. Right, because most murderers have a coherent motive, not just random bloodlust.

              1. Indeed. And one of the reasons that this case is getting attention is that it breaks that mold. This was a stranger killing a kid who had every right to be where he was. Fear of the stranger/other was what motivated the interaction between the two. Whoever initiated the violence, it seems clear from the few facts that are known, that it was this fear of a "stranger" that drove the actions of both parties.

        2. Most black on black murder is gang related.

    4. And the overwhelming majority of those black people are killed by other black people. Where is the march for them?

      In Bodymore, Murderland, there have been many "stop the violence" gatherings.

      1. We won't start seeing results until the government declares a War on Violence.

        1. Indeed. The government Wars on Drugs and Poverty have exceeded everyone's wildest expectations, so a War on Violenece will surely bring the same quick victory.

          1. Only if they use swat teams.

        2. This violence is unacceptable!

      2. needs moar gun buybacks

  7. All news outlets reporting that Trayvon Martin's condition is stable.

    1. I didn't know that part of Florida was horse country.

    2. Thermodynamic equilibrium is over-rated.

  8. With 60% of those polled wanting Gingrich out, and 61% in favor of Paul departing...

    I wonder how much overlap there was in these two groups.

    1. Im assuming Paul's number was near 61% in December.

      1. You're saying Gingrich's cache is slipping while Paul's is staying steady and that's the difference? I could buy that.

    2. Seventy-eight percent "think" Zimmerman should be arrested.

      1. Yes, he should. Let a jury decide his guilt or innocence. It'll be OJ and Rodney all rolled up into one.

  9. already reported on by Reason, but hey:

    Mich. militia members cleared of charges that accused them of plotting war against government

    But there never was an attack. Defense lawyers said highly offensive remarks about police and the government were wrongly turned into a high-profile criminal case that drew public praise from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who in 2010 called Hutaree a "dangerous organization."


    "His diatribes evince nothing more than his own hatred for ? perhaps even desire to fight or kill ? law enforcement; this is not the same as seditious conspiracy."

    1. Well good, I say. These non-Muslim right-wingers are much more useful to the non-Muslim right-wing "terrorist" construct if they are out in circulation rather than languishing in prison, if you think about it. Dude.

  10. The discovery of abundant supplies of cheap natural gas means that many of those plants won't get built anyway - making the Obama administration's plan, while painful for the coal industry, much less relevant.

    Power developers have scrapped plans for more than 100 coal-fired electricity plants over the past decade due to difficulty obtaining construction and pollution permits or because they were simply too expensive.

    Instead, they are turning to natural gas, which can be built more quickly and are typically more efficient, and are far cheaper.

    "At best, a coal-fired power plant is about 2-1/2 times as expensive as gas," Blossman said.

    1. So at best the miracle of fracking is going to save Obama and the country from himself.

      Tries moar harder.

      1. oooh - and it'll save teh mountians too!
        >isnt it happyest now?!

    2. Actually, I can tell you from right here in the middle of the Marcellus that the drilling of new wells has started to slow down because the price of natural gas is too low that extraction is not worth the cost. So expect the price of natural gas to rise in the future.

      1. drill n cap
        how do it work?

        1. Not for long. You only drill and cap wells that you started before the price drops. Once the price drops to the point where you are capping, you aren't drilling new wells.

          supply n demand
          how do it work?

          1. Some day we will get a real progressive Congress and they will repeal that damned law.

            1. gorilla in da room alert!
              >free-market conspires to artifically raise prices!

              oh noes, cant happen

      2. Well, they'll probably be building more gas power plants now.

        1. And, of course, the EPA will be releasing its rules on carbon emission by natural gas plants soon, too.

          1. sorry - NatGas plants exceed teh new kenyan regs

      3. When inventories are at capacity, why go get more? Although I eagerly await the media screaming in mid-summer when supply chain hiccups in getting wells back online make prices jump the same way they're crashing now.

    3. It's like Obama decided he didn't want to win Pennsylvania or something.

      The closing of the Philadelphia refineries isn't going to help him either, not that there's anything he can do about that, of course.


    4. Gas is also better because it is piped right into the power plant. A few years back, BNSF had some broken train track issues and plants were having difficulty keeping their coal supplies at a safe level. Some power companies had to implement mitigation strategies because if they ran out of coal, they'd get fined for non-reliability.

  11. California Democratic treasurer busted for stealing $7 million.
    No harm, no foul.

    1. It is not like she is the SEIU and stole real money.

    2. Who would entrust that gigantic mess of a slob with ANY money?

      It's completely embarrassing and amusing. Also the money quote from one of the aggrieved pols:
      "To just think that this lady just came by and took that hard-earned money that took me years to raise, it's just essentially criminal,"

      Congratulations! You just described all levels of your profession you moron. Or where did you think all your tax money magically comes from?

  12. Poll: Obama receives low marks on efforts to reduce gas prices

    Despite efforts to tout his administration's energy policies, a new poll finds voters still overwhelmingly disapprove of President Obama's handling of high gas prices.

    Sixty-eight percent of those surveyed in a new Reuters/Ipsos poll released Tuesday disapproved of Obama's efforts on high prices at the pump. Twenty-four percent approved of how the administration is handling the price spikes.

    1. bomb bomb bomb
      bomb bomb iran...

    2. Gas just went up another nickel in my area yesterday. Are we up to a national average of $4 yet?

      1. I'm paying $4.40

        1. I hope that's Hawaii.

        2. 4.10 here in Western Wisconsin.

      2. For regular, we're up to $3.91.


        1. I always thought you Texans pumped and refined everything in your backyards. Don't destroy my illusions.

          1. Depends on what you mean by pump and refine. Remember, there are only two types from Texas - steers and queers

            1. What an odd thread this has become.

          2. I lived most of my life directly across the freeway from the largest Shell refinery in the world. There was a Shell gas station right outside the entrance to that plant, and they consistently were more expensive than most of the other stations in the area.

            I paid $3.73/gal for my last tank. I'm still in the Houston area, just not near Shell anymore.

      3. $3.73, bitches.

      4. $3.91 at my last fillup.

        Anyone want to buy a 4200lb V8 RWD car? Hello? Anyone?

        seriously, I can't complain too much - I get 16-17 city if I stay off the go-juice. 22-25 highway depending on what I speed I cruise at.

        Right now, it's just the cost of having plenty of interior space for my big frame.

        1. Those are the sort of numbers my 10-year-old Buick gets.
          I've stopped even looking at the gas prices.

        2. it fitz in smaller cars if it loses weight
          > v mpg = ^kia

          1. Another argument for Obamacare: fat Americans losing weight will increase gas mileage!

          2. er, it's more of a frame issue. I'm 6'2" and most cars don't have good legroom for me.

            1. 6'5 here, and I feel your pain.

        3. Anyone want to buy a 4200lb V8 RWD car?

          I'd be a dead man if I tried to get rid of our 4000 lb V8 RWD car.

          1. I'm happy with my 3600 lb V6 FWD Avalon, thanks.

        4. Fuck, at least you get a V-8 out of the deal. I've got a Mazda pickup with a V-6 that seems to get 18 mpg whether I'm driving on the highway or towing a boat in stop-and-go traffic.

          1. it's not much of a V8 - the 4.6L SOHC gives you the performance of a 4-cyl Camry with the mileage of a musclecar!

            I certainly miss my 5.7L LT1 or the 355 I built in my garage (ZZ4 roller-cam, Vortec heads).

            1. That's terrible. Mrs. Dean gets better mileage than that with a 500 hp 6.2 liter plant.

              1. it was my wife's old car, who got the Honda Element. I sorta "inherited" the Marquis, and (foolishly) kept it since the miles were lower than my previous cars.

  13. Anyone else seeing ads on Reason to donate to Elizabeth Warren?

    1. All I see is white.

      1. I just came to the painful realization that I am racist. All my favorite Nazis are white.

    2. I'm getting swapalease.com

    3. nope

      1) Run Firefox
      2) Run Adblocker
      3) Run Scriptblocker... only allow the sites you want to see

      Viola, a cleaner and faster running Reason.

      1. ^ What he say!

      2. You're like those people who brag about not having a television.

        1. well, I don't have cable (or satellite) - does that count?

        2. Do you TiVo commercials, CN?

          1. I don't have a television.

            1. [rimshot]

      3. Heck, even Chrome can use AdBlock+ now.

      4. Well, yeah, but there's always a price to pay.

        No Snorg Tees girls. No Jennifer Love Hewitt.

        1. HI I'M BILLY MAYS!!

    4. Every click drains the Warren campaign of ~ $.50


        1. $3.50 worth of efficacy. New libertarian record!

  14. Sanford cops originally requested an arrest warrant for George Zimmerman, but the State Attorney's office kiboshed it.

    I feel bad for whoever lives at the residence that is mistakenly assumed to be the State Attorney's home address once Spike Lee finds out about this development.

    1. Apparently Spike's indefensible mistake is hitting bigger news sites this morning:


      1. I wonder how big the check Spike will be writing will be?

        1. Tweet Mother of God!

        2. Before or after the drive-by fusillade tomorrow night?

        3. "It Be Substantial!"

          A Spike Lee joint!

      2. Spike's mistaken targets were crackers, so at least it wasn't a total loss for him.

      3. Black power all day. No justice, no peace" and an obscenity

        Stay classy...

  15. Romney is closer to tying Romney in Pennsylvania, where the president leads Romney by a 45-42 percent. That's inside the poll's error margin.

    Apparently that Miami Herald writer doesn't see much difference between Romney and Obama.

    1. I miss Dave Barry.
      Or is that a different paper?

      1. I miss Dave Barry
        That'd be a good name for a rock band.

        1. I miss Dave's Berries

          Good name for a porno.

  16. In short, the New Black Panther Party is a hate group, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Anti-Defamation League, and other organizations that track fringe ideological movements.

    "The New Black Panther Party is a virulently racist and anti-Semitic organization whose leaders have encouraged violence against whites, Jews and law enforcement officers," says a Southern Poverty Law Center report on the group.

    1. If you call enough people "hate groups" you are bound to be right sometimes.

      1. Are there any groups with "Hate" actually in their name?

      2. no recording to the wingguts here the SLCP only hate the jesus - -moar lies

        1. ^poar lil spoofer

    2. Yeah, well the Anti-Defamation League claimed the Christian Coalition was an neo-Nazi group, not exactly credible.

    3. Blind squirrel, acorn, etc.

  17. It's either Zimmerman or Obamacare - all...the...time...

    How Obamacare Derailed the Economic Recovery

    Assuming that the $800 billion Recovery and Reinvestment Act, aka the stimulus, would work the magic promised by his economics team, Mr. Obama set off on his quest to guarantee healthcare for every American. The resulting food fight over the legislation ? the ugly parceling out of favors in return for votes and lies told to justify passage -- permanently damaged President Obama's reputation, divided a country desperate to heal, and distracted the White House from further efforts to build employment. It was a terrible decision, and the country continues to pay for it.

  18. http://www.slate.com/articles/.....case_.html

    Liberal news magazine just wants the Courts to stop telling Congress and the President what to do.

    Yeah, it was a bad day for the home team yesterday at the Court.

    1. What (the Supreme Court) should say instead is this: "By requiring that Americans purchase health insurance, two coequal branches of government?Congress and the president?have determined that the Constitution permits such a requirement. Because that determination is reasonable, we need not reach an independent judgment on the question. Our inquiry is therefore at an end." That is, so long as reasonable people can believe that an act of Congress is constitutional, the Supreme Court should generally let the legislation stand.

      Holy shit, this guy's a law professor?

      1. Since every law passes congress and the president (excepting veto overrides), then this applies to all laws (excepting veto overrides).

        That really limits what laws the Supremes can review.

      2. What's the function of the Supreme Court then? Should Congress go running to the SC when the president vetoes a bill? Should the President petition the Court to agree that some piece of legislation he favors be drafted by Congress?

        1. The function of the Supreme Court is to defend legislation against those with the temerity to ask for Constitutional justification.

      3. He just wants to get rid of judicial review, no big deal.

        1. No he doesn't. Let a Republican Congress and administration pass a federal ban on abortion and this "reasonableness" inquiry he has invented will be discarded in a heartbeat.

          1. 1000X this^. And neither Greene nor the SWPL goons commenting on the piece want to admit it.

      4. The court is great! (when they're on our side, striking down evil Rethuglican laws). They suck if they strike down ours.

      5. That article is un-fucking-beleivable.

      6. Because that determination is reasonable,

        Way to assume the conclusion.

        Co-equal doesn't mean they each get one vote on whether its Constitutional or not. Otherwise, Congress wouldn't be able to override vetoes.

        Co-equal means they each have equal authority, and don't need to defer to any of the others.

      7. Because that determination is reasonable...

        Wait, what?

      8. How this is supposed to work, see, is that if a law doesn't work for even one branch, it has the power to try to kill or modify it. Judicial review, vetoes, votes, overrides, impeachment, amendments, etc.--we have all of these checks and balances to prevent any branch or faction from running amok.

        I'm pretty sure I got that concept after watching it presented in some civics cartoon when I was 7.

        1. Aah, that's what a 7 year old would think. Right-minded adults with a gig at Slate know better

        2. Here is how it works. When it is a law this guy likes, the court needs to shut up and leave it alone. When it is one he doesn't, it is unreasonable.

          It really is that crude.

          1. It's so, so stupid. All it takes is for his enemy--the Republicans--to decide to make use of that unlimited, unchecked power for ends he doesn't approve of. The fewer checks, the more radical the actions of an opposition party in power may be.

      9. In other words, ignore Marbury v Madison?

        1. well, that was, what, 1803? And Marshall and the other poor fools didn't understand how important it was that their betters be given free rein to run our lives for us, even of the Constitution doesn't let them. And they were white and male. And now they're dead. So fuck 'em

      10. Holy shit, this guy's a law professor?

        At Columbia, too. Unbelievable.

        1. Not that unbelievable...on either count.

      11. They should rename this A.M. Facepalms instead. Much more descriptive of what you're actually getting.

      12. Read between the lines:

        "What (the Supreme Court) should say instead is this: "By requiring that Americans purchase health insurance, two coequal branches of government?Congress and the president?have determined that the Constitution permits such a requirement. Because that determination is reasonable whenever my preferred party is in power, we need not reach an independent judgment on the question. Our inquiry is therefore at an end." That is, so long as reasonable people can believe that an act of a Democratic Congress is constitutional, the Supreme Court should generally let the legislation stand.

    2. The bigger question is not whether passage of the bill reflects a constitutional judgment?after all, the president and members of Congress take an oath to support the Constitution?but whether judges owe any deference to that judgment.

      Emphasis added. I suppose it's "to support the Constitution as each understands it in their own way".

      1. You know what I meant.

  19. When it comes to "issue important to women," Republicans start to suffer badly. Only 28 percent in Florida say they trust Republicans to do a better job; 58 percent trust Democrats. This large, double-digit advantage in the Democrats' favor repeated itself when voters were polled about "reproductive health issues," birth control and abortion.

    It helps when the Republican candidate for president calls some random school girl a slut while Democrats and their surrogates are nothing but gentlemen to women. Also, Barack Obama is so fucking dreamy.

    1. Not to mention Sarah Palin sending that Nazi guy to kill Obama's son in Florida. Think that says it all.

      1. Well she had already tried to kill Gabriel Giffords.

        1. she certainly killed john mccain

          1. Now that was funny!

        2. I can't believe they just let her walk around free, like she's not a killer. I guess it's because of her celebrity status as a former member of the Australian troupe, Mount Me Python.

          1. Mount Me Python
            It's only gay if you bring the gay with you -- Pro Libertate

            1. I stand by that statement. Are you bringing the gay, Citizen?

              1. I'm bringing the chicken salad. I hear Warty's bringing the gay.

                1. He wears it like a fur coat.

                2. I'm bringing the chicken salad

                  I am going to take this as a "yes". NTTAWWT

                  1. Did you see my secret recipe, Marshall?

                    1. Did you see my secret recipe, Marshall?

                      THAT'S NOT MAYONNAISE!!!!

            2. Do Westboro Baptists pour red paint on it?

              1. Not when Warty is wearing it. He's been known to fly into uncontrollable rages for lesser offenses to his person. . .or to his gay coat.

              2. Yes, but it's not paint. Or red. And it's not really a pouring action.

                1. It's not really a coat, per se. It's more of a...cape, maybe.

                  1. It's not really a coat, per se. It's more of a...cape, maybe.

                    It's whatever the wearer needs it to be. Even a nylon track suit if it comes down to that.

                    1. Little-known fact: There's only one gay person in the world at any one time--whoever is wearing the Cape of Gayness. It just changes hands with great frequency.

                  2. A cape is the gayest of all over garments.

                    1. It usually is, but it can also be cool. But where that line is, nobody knows.

                    2. It's not gay unless you bring the gay with you -- Christopher Reeve

                    1. You know I'm retired from hero work.

            3. not a leotard?

              1. I can be a leotard, sure. But gay dudes usually want me to be wearing a cape, so I oblige.

            4. just swear to me that you've got the male equivalent of vajazzling underneath whatever you're wearing

              1. I'm trying to think of nongay capes. Superman, sure. Dracula, absolutely. But those are fictional and quasi-fictional characters.

                1. It's not gay unless you bring the gay with you -- Bela Lugosi

                  1. And I need to borrow The Cape of Gayness next Tuesday at 12:15 p.m.
                    Don't ask.

              2. male equivalent of vajazzling

                Warty's junk looks like a Clarie's threw up all over it.

                No matter what I do, he won't stop sending me pictures. 🙁

              3. That's stupid. You're stupid.

                1. That's the Hat of Stupid.

                  1. The Hat of Stupid cannot change shape. It is always a backwards baseball cap.

                    1. It has different settings. Upside-down and sideways is an 11.

                    2. I thought it lived in Fort Worth Texas.

                    3. The highest stupidity setting has various pictures of the Insane Clown Posse on it, as well.

                    4. I'd like to think that future historians will look back on this epoch as "The Time When No One Had A Friend That Would Take A Picture Of Them."

                    5. The evidence is overwhelming.

            5. Whatever she grows up to be, please don't let it be anything that affects another human being's safety or finances

              1. Whatever she grows up to be, please don't let it be anything that affects another human being's safety or finances

                I think we can all see her future: "I need ta check ya asshole."

                1. You need that big TSA salaries to buy your ICP-themed baby coffin, after all.

                2. Get back to work, SugarFree.

            6. Phew, so safety will be unaffected. Nothing hurt except dignity.

              I was running late for a flight on Friday, sailed through screening, and then got pulled over for a so-called random check. My guess: middle-class females won't object. Well I did. They tried to tell me this was for my own safety and i laughed in their faces. The airline was paging me, otherwise I would have tarried to point out the utter folly of their position

              1. Not even the Rapiscan, the most accurate name for anything ever?

    2. It's crazy how thoroughly the Democrats have convinced some women that their vote should be based entirely on abortion.

      1. and the rest vote against teh gop war on women.>bye bye suburbs

        1. Like it's a shock that more women would want a more intrusive nanny state. It's been that way since before Prohibition.

    3. OTOH, polls also consistently reveal that women have negative views about libertarianism. What do we blame that on.

      1. There are way too many women who don't use their brains, that's why. As one who does, again, I despair.

      2. What do we blame that on.


        1. What am I, chopped liver?

      3. Amendment XIX.

      4. History and science shows the founding fathers were right again.

    4. Leading up to every election for the past forty years, the dinosaur media has declared that there is a gender gap that the Republicans must close in order to win. The prescription is always the same: Republicans must adopt Democrat policies wrt "women's issues" like abortion. Yet, somehow, the same dinosaur media never point out the gender gap that Democrats have wrt male voters. Amazingly, the Republicans still win elections, at least nationally and in those parts of the country where the Republicans haven't adopted Democrat policies.

      Concern trolls are concerned.

      1. Yeah, I like to point out that the gender gap is always in two directions. And, unlike the "black gap", men and women are roughly the same size demographic, for so it really is a two way problem.

  20. Well they, blew up the chicken man in Roswell last night,
    Well the, blew up his house too.


    1. No dogs or chickens were shot.

      Nothing else happened.

    2. Now I can't get that song out of my head.

    3. I've been hearing that in my head since I read the headline last night.

    4. When I first saw that headline, my first thought was how sad I was for his widow, the Chicken Lady.

  21. Woman live-blogs her suicide on Facebook

    Lin's last Facebook entries show her chatting with nine friends, alerting them to her gradual asphyxiation. One picture uploaded from her mobile phone depicts a charcoal barbecue burning next to two stuffed animals. Another shows the room filled with fumes.

    One friend identified as Chung Hsin, told Lin, "Be calm, open the window, put out the charcoal fire, please, I beg you."

    Lin replied: "The fumes are suffocating. They fill my eyes with tears. Don't write me anymore."
    Lin's last words, in Chinese, were: "Too late. My room is filled with fumes. I just posted another picture. Even while I'm dying, I still want FB (Facebook). Must be FB poison. Haha."

    1. don't give the trolls any ideas

    2. And the dumbasses she calls friends didn't call 911. I know some people are in such pain that death seems to be the only relieve, but fuck. With friends like these.

      1. relieve s/b relief

      2. Well it is Taiwan, so I'm not sure dialing 911 there does any good...

        1. 110 for police, 119 for fire or medical emergency, 112 for both from any GSM handset.

          1. What number for a happy ending?

    3. Now that's the worst chat room ever.

  22. "If I had a son, he'd ransack stores.


    1. Trayyvon died. I need a new TV.

      1. Hey, u said Trayvon. Dat be $5.

    2. This could be the start of something big.

      1. I feel for you. Feel for you.

  23. No dogs or chickens were shot.

    Nothing else happened.

  24. Durkee, who heads Durkee & Associates in Burbank, was arrested in September and charged with suspicion of mail fraud after millions of dollars disappeared from the campaign accounts of U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, other Democratic members of Congress and several Democratic state lawmakers.

    To make up for the cash shortfall, Feinstein had to send extra MILCON dollars to her defense contractor husband's firm.

  25. Where's John?

    1. refilling his prozac to vote for mittens

    2. Where's John?


  26. My new fantasy scenario: Gingrich drops out and endorses Paul.

    1. Well the Titties is nuts. So anything is possible. But I can't see it.

      1. If he'd legally changed his name, as he was advised to do so, the primaries would already be over.

    2. Gingrich drops out and endorses Paul.

      A fantastic ploy to get even less people to vote for Paul.

  27. This is like the worst chat room ever.

    1. It's downright civil. Where's John? MNG? SugarFree? This is unacceptable!

      1. MNG is taking an Obama load.

  28. The Seminole County State Attorney's Office was consulted the night of Martin's killing, but no prosecutor ever visited the scene. As the controversy intensified, Gov. Rick Scott replaced Seminole State Attorney Norm Wolfinger with Corey, the state attorney for Duval, Nassau and Clay counties, based in Jacksonville.

    Norm Wolfinger, it should be noted, is a fellow white, like George Zimmerman. We won't know the ethnicity of Governor Rick Scott or replacement prosecutor Angela Corey until we see if Zimmerman gets charged or not.

    1. You don't have to visit a scene to evaluate a case. They really are desperate to find something anything that will fit the narrative.

      1. damn that jeb bush!

    2. The fact that the State Attorney declined to OK an arrest might simply mean that they weren't prepared to take the case before a judge for an arraignment.

      They might have felt that without a better case the judge would throw the case out right then.

  29. In Israel, a battle to save the ancient Canaan dog
    the Israeli government is threatening to close the operation that has been helping preserve the breed...

    In an eviction notice sent late last year, the Israel Land Authority argues that Sha'ar Hagai Kennels is illegally occupying government land. Sha'ar Hagai's Shiboleth says she moved more than 40 years ago to what was then an abandoned water station and paid rent to the water company only to find out that it didn't own the land. She says she asked the land authority about regularizing her situation and heard nothing ? until she received the eviction notice. Moving, she says, would be prohibitively expensive, and few neighborhoods would welcome noisy kennels.

    1. Those dogs are amazing. They actually belonged to the ancient Hebrews. And when the Romans sacked Jerusalem, they went feral in the desert only to be re domesticated when the Jews started coming back to Israel in the 1920s. They literally waited 2000 years for their masters to return.

    2. You know who else talked a lot about Jewish dogs?

      1. Nathan?

      2. Hebrew Frank?

      3. A desperate Jewish bachelor?

    3. Re: MNG,

      In Israel, a battle to save the ancient Canaan dog

      If Canaan dog became the main ingredient of a new and exciting delicacy, I'll bet the house and kids(*) the Canaan dog is saved for generations to come.

      I fear that, alas, people's sense of yuckiness and their tendency to anthropomorphize cute furry animals will ultimately doom the Canaan dog.

      (*) I don't own the house and the kids are bratty, so I can afford such bet.

  30. Would you rather live in a kennel in Israel or Palestine?

    1. Long, butthurt memories, eh CN?

      1. Jesus, MNG. I thought you'd think it was funny. You're a touchy one.

        1. Memory is just a right-wing meme, CN.

        2. MNG's just on edge because of all the doxxing going on around here.

          It's a hostile chat environment.

          1. Hey, am I going to get all apoplectic when CN posts some lincoln or sherman snark?

            No, I just remind him that every time he listens to or (horrors) actually sings the star spangled banner he should be thinking about the grandson of Francis Scott Key - who was incarcerated by the feds for writing anti-war editorials. His quarters were not far from where his grandfather conjured up his flag waving lyrics.

        3. I don't think it's funny. I'd take an Israeli latrine over that degenerate shithole any day of the fucking week.

            1. 1) I'm a rabid Jeffersonian republican and an anti-interventionist.

              2) You're not that fucking retard spoofing the real Citizen Nothing, are you? If you are, eat shit and fuck off. If you're not, cool, just covering all bases.

              1. If you're not, cool, just covering all bases.
                No harm, no foul.

  31. In 2010, according to a study published this month by University of California economist Emmanuel Saez, 93 percent of income growth went to the wealthiest 1 percent of American households, while everyone else divvied up the 7 percent that was left over.

    It was not ever thus. In the recovery that followed the downturn of the early 1990s, the wealthiest 1 percent captured 45 percent of the nation's income growth. In the recovery that followed the dot-com bust 10 years ago, Saez noted, 65 percent of the income growth went to the top 1 percent. This time around, it's reached 93 percent ? a level so high it shakes the foundations of the entire American project.


    1. Policies that make it so you have to be very rich to make money from investments make it difficult for the middle class to accumulate wealth.

    2. And the housing and higher ed bubble haven't helped either.

      1. I think the people most hurt by the economic woes are those without college degrees, right? So I'm not sure how it is the higher ed bubble...

        1. But since the debt burden of getting a education is so much higher, a lot of people who would have in past decades gone from say the middle to the upper or the lower to the middle classes, didn't and don't because of student loan burdens and housing costs. That extra money the degree earns you doesn't do you as much or any good when all or part of it goes to pay off your loans.

          1. Charlotte Corday,

            Any way you or MNG want to slice it, it is clear as day that the reason for the wealth disparity is credit expansion. The FED's policy of money and credit expansion feeds those issues you allude to: Growing studen debt, credit card debt, the real estate asset bust, and the net loss of value of savings.

            The exact SAME monetary phenomenon was or is behind the widening gap between poor and rich people in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, etc. AndI don't blame the rich - they're not stupid, they convert their liquid assets to something else that holds value better. the blame rests entirely on the Central Banks and government largess. America is turning itself into a 3rd World Country very fast, all due to the arrogance of the politicians and Ben Bernanke's.

            1. Very true. And the credit expansion has been the driver behind the higher ed and housing bubbles. We are both right.

    3. Re: MNG,

      93 percent of income growth went to the wealthiest 1 percent of American households[...]

      Capitalism can create prosperity, but left unfettered it doesn't create broadly shared prosperity ? and never will.

      And then the author proceeds to miss the point entirely. There IS a transfer of wealth, but it is not due to what he believes is the cause; it is instead the direct result of credit expansion. And it is not so much that the rich are getting richer, because they're not by that much if you adjust for inflation - it is that the middle class and the poor are getting poorer as their savings and income get devalued.

      1. OM-I thought the stats were neat, I certainly don't put much stock in Meyerson's conclusions drawn from any stats as a general matter...

      2. Yes, it's kind of disingenuous to refer to the current system as "unfettered" when the Fed is pumping shitloads of cheap, easy money into the system.

        Whenever someone uses the word "unfettered" when referring to the economy, what he is really saying is, I don't know shit about economics.

        What's that? Another round of QE, Mr Bernanke?

    4. So he's comparing income growth in 2010 to the undefined "recoveries" in the early 1990s and 2000s. Presumably those "recoveries" stretch beyond a one-year period. Smells like apples and oranges. Not to mention -- how are they defining income. These sorts of stats, in my experience, almost uniformly exclude benefits from income (in part b/c they are not reported on income tax returns). Excluding non-cash benefits makes the comparisons completely worthless and misleading.

      1. I think he should define income with two categories: income from salary and wages, ok enough, income from capital gains, TEH AWESOMEST, let's tax this at a lower rate!

        1. Or we could equalize the treatment of both types of income by taxing wages twice, just like we do to dividends.

    5. What percentage of the drop in income in 2008-2009 was absorbed by the top 1%?

      1. RC Dean is like some strange inverse of the old NYT "the poor and minorities hardest hit" joke. If there is an overdog in a fight, he's concerned for it and rooting for it...

        1. Geez, asking for a little context for a strangely limited data point is now "rooting for the overdog."

          Meaning comes from context, MNG. Here's some context, and meaning:

          Emmanuel Saez updated his valuable series on income trends to include 2009 and 2010 and finds, not surprisingly, that those in the top 1 percent started seeing a strong recovery in 2010 and have recouped some of the ground lost in the downturn.


          1. "Text without context is pretext"!

          2. I'm hoping MNG attacks Saez as an unreliable source.

        2. There you go -- this is a "fight" between the 99% and 1%, both of which are static populations.

    6. Yeah, 2010 was quite the recovery.

  32. Poll: America [sic] likes Mitt Romney more than Rick Santorum; wants Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich to drop out.

    CNN Poll: Majority in GOP [that is, boys and girls, only those that vote Republican and NOT "America"] say Gingrich and Paul should end bids

    Sheesh, talk about spin!

    1. The question is so what? What if 90% of everyone thought Paul should end his bid? Does Paul somehow lose his right to continue then?

    2. The real bias in the news is they want a horserace. Having to mention Paul all the time (because if they don't his supporters will rightly call them on it) is so annoying to them...

      With a horserace you don't have to talk about, and hence understand, policy and issues. You just talk about "was this a good day for Obama? or was that a gaffe by Romney? or let's go to John King with his analysis of this poll on the white board!"

      1. So racist. I am disappoint.

        1. Don't you find John King insufferable?

          Almost as much as nika on Morning Joe?

      2. "The real bias in the news is they want a horserace."

        I blame Tim Cavanaugh.

      3. Most horse races have 8 horses.

        What the news wants is a UFC bout.

    3. Nuclear Gangrene should drop out, but Paul's gotta take it to the end.

      1. Is that some kind of santorum joke?

    4. America likes Mitt Romney more than Rick Santorum

      Leading up to every presidential election for the past thirty years, the media has suggested that a Republican candidate must be "likeable" in order to win. Policy positions aren't so important. Coincidentally, the most "likeable" candidate is always the one chosen by the Republican establishment.

      Concern trolls are concerned.

  33. Britain Deserves Better

    1. Wow. I've been off the scene for so long I have no clue what that means.

      1. I'm giving you a choice: either listen to the song or start eatin' that trash can.

        1. Let's just assume we had the longest fight scene ever and I listened to it. This is like a tribute to the genre.

  34. 100% OT: Two new synth songs by moi:

    1. I'm playing both of them at the same time. It kinda works

      1. yikes - mental meltdown!

      2. I started with Level Control, and then after a few minutes just hit play on Finger Gyro. They have these occasional accidental syncs, and then they pull out of sync again. And then as Finger Gyro fades to an end, Level Control quietly keeps pulsing.

  35. From Twitter:

    Kiss Me is the first lesbian film to emerge from Sweden in over a decade. We caught up with the film's director: http://t.co/WpPVAMmx #llgff

    A decade between drinks? What has happened to the Swedes?

    1. It's only gay if you bring the gay yourself -- Ingmar Bergman

  36. I guess it is good news that 39% of Republicans want to keep hearing Ron Paul's message, while 69% have decided to stick with the "invasion of the month" candidates.

    1. Ooops, 61%.

      1. Freudian slip?

    1. Oh shit. I started reading comments. Eject, eject, eject!

  37. my girl just bit me and it hurt

    1. Pull your dentures out of her vagina - problem solved!

  38. so the US leads in life expectancy?

    The US actually does very well in life expectancy of people who actually reach old age. I realize that's small comfort for those that don't but the number of people who die in accidents and homicides is higher here. And those people tend to be young.

    The US record on cancer survival rates is also better than many other countries.

    1. Yeah. The statistics say that if you live past 30, you'll outlive the average person pretty much anywhere else.

  39. Re: the Obamacare case in the SCOTUS

    "It certainly didn't go as well as I had hoped it would for the government," said Timothy Jost, a law professor at Washington and Lee University and an authority on healthcare law.

    God, that is music to my ears. I wish my news stories included that phrase.

    After Wednesday's third day of arguments, the justices will meet behind closed doors Friday to cast their votes and begin working on opinions.

    Why is it that they'll cast votes on Friday, but we won't get a ruling until June?

    1. Gotta write that shit up, dude, and decide who gets the honor. Or, rather, have the clerks do so. Then they bicker and argue about different language, insult each other, then remove their robes at midnight of the appointed evening and perform the Nude Justice Dance.

      1. Oh yeah! And don't forget the Annointing with Whale Oil part.

        1. That's assumed.

          I see you read The Brethren, too.

      2. I only hope they find an opinion with 5 votes, and not write 3 separate 4-vote concurrences that babble on endlessly and solve nothing.

        It'd be hilarious if they indeed disposed of the issue on some procedural grounds, like standing or ripeness, and refused to decide anything substantive. Regardless, I'm guessing about 200 pages for the main opinion, and probably a good 50 or so for at least one concurring. At least Souter isn't there anymore to bulk out the page count. Talk about your frustrated history professors...

        That Kagan hasn't recused herself is one of the rankest offenses against judicial ethics that I can remember on the SCOTUS. I guess covering for a senile Justice has to right up there too.

        1. That Kagan hasn't recused herself is one of the rankest offenses against judicial ethics that I can remember on the SCOTUS.

          Same here. If OCare is upheld 5-4, it will be permanently damaged as an institution because of this. Although I suspect Roberts will join that opinion to try to control the damage.

  40. Diane Keaton: Traitor to the Sistahood:

    She now admits that in hindsight it would have been better if she had been in a relationship after all.
    Miss Keaton said in an interview: 'As a parent I provide all I can, but I think in the best possible scenario you need to have a man.'


    Pinched-face feminists hardest hit.

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