Thursday, May 01, 2008


Married To The Sea

Yes, I do just frickin love Married To The Sea.

You should, too.

In other news, some batshit nutjob says the Constitution does not prohibit torture, because, you know, torture isn't punishment, so it can't be cruel and unusual punishment:

"I don't like torture," Scalia says. "Although defining it is going to be a nice trick. But who's in favor of it? Nobody. And we have a law against torture. But if the - everything that is hateful and odious is not covered by some provision of the Constitution," he says.

"If someone's in custody, as in Abu Ghraib, and they are brutalized by a law enforcement person, if you listen to the expression 'cruel and unusual punishment,' doesn't that apply?" Stahl asks.

"No, No," Scalia replies.

"Cruel and unusual punishment?" Stahl asks.

"To the contrary," Scalia says. "Has anybody ever referred to torture as punishment? I don't think so."

"Well, I think if you are in custody, and you have a policeman who's taken you into custody…," Stahl says.

"And you say he's punishing you?" Scalia asks.

"Sure," Stahl replies.

"What's he punishing you for? You punish somebody…," Scalia says.

"Well because he assumes you, one, either committed a crime…or that you know something that he wants to know," Stahl says.

"It's the latter. And when he's hurting you in order to get information from you…you don’t say he's punishing you. What’s he punishing you for? He's trying to extract…," Scalia says.

"Because he thinks you are a terrorist and he's going to beat the you-know-what out of you…," Stahl replies.

"Anyway, that’s my view," Scalia says. "And it happens to be correct."

What a loon! Good thing he isn't a Supreme Court Justice or anything... oh, wait... ah, shit...

As to all this "What is Obama going to do about Reverend Wright" stuff, I personally feel the question is best answered with another question, such as, "What is John McCain going to do about John Hagee?" Whoops, hold up... we don't live in that world. You know. The one where everybody is held to the same standard. I forgot.

Then there's the thing where a 15 year old girl lets someone from VANITY FAIR take a picture of her naked back and everyone goes completely fucking bonkers about it!!! I'm trying to remember if I've ever seen any naked teenage girl backs on the Disney Channel or anything, like, you know, when various teenage girl stars are wearing swim suits and halter tops and what have you. Maybe I have. Maybe I've seen a few thousand. But only because I have an 8 year old stepdaughter; I didn't know the Disney Channel existed before I moved to River City. (That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Yeah-baby.)

Still, I think I'm trying to make one of my little points here, somehow. I'm not sure, though. I could just be arguing in my spare time.

Also, bastion of progressive liberal blogging Kevin Drum doesn't see a single goddam thing wrong with forcing everyone to get a National ID card. My response, from his comment threads:

Heh. Shorter Kevin Drum: "Fuck it, we're already living in a police state, let's for the love of christ make it an efficient one!"

For what it's worth (nothing to you, most likely) I think one of the greatest intrusions on personal civil liberties that has ever happened has been the courts upholding a cop's 'right' to demand ID from anyone, at any time, for any reason. I should not have to have a card in my wallet to walk freely down the street if I'm not doing anything criminal or anti-social. When a cop can demand I produce an ID, and if I do not, arrest me (and if I resist or attempt to flee, use force, up to and including lethal force, to enforce his arrest powers), I am basically being put in a position where I may have to prove my innocence whenever I leave my home. That's fascist crap and has no place in a free society.

I know, I know. It's much more efficient to just show the Man our papers when he asks for them. It's a dangerous world. Don't I want our children to be safe? What am I, some kind of anarchist? Do I want our valiant forces of law and order to have to operate with a blindfold on? Don't I understand how quickly criminals and terrorists would abuse actual freedom to wander around in public without being harassed, if they actually had it?

I'd like to say I remember when this was a free country, but I suppose I'd be kidding myself. The last eight years sure have done a lot of structural damage to the facade, though, if a constantly self proclaiming lib/prog like Kevin Drum can actually come out in support of national ID cards and get something like 25 comments from fellow 'liberals' agreeing with him.

Bruce Schneir does a lovely run down of all the pragmatic problems with the idea here, and that's all very convincing to me, too, but mostly, I'm just opposed to the idea on entirely philosophical grounds.

And that's all you get tonight. Unless, of course, you want to check out some of those links and see what else might be over there, in which case, lucky you.


  1. Anonymous11:02 PM

    Thanks for the tip on Married to the Sea, Doc. Digging through the archives right now.
    And I quit watching the Disney Channel after they quit showing the classic Disney cartoon shorts (or I got tired of watching them, I forget which)
    And I dunno about John McCain, but to my relief one answer to what do you do about John Hagee at Casa Collett isn't "turn on his show on TV". Hagee made a cameo appearance in the first Left Behind movie as a passenger on a plane before the Rapture wearing a Hawaiian shirt that I maintain to this day he was forced into at gunpoint.
    And a warning: after Tuesday's primary election in Indiana, since your state is next in the queue, you should be getting your first presidential mailer from Hillary on Wednesday. After SuperWife explains the significance of getting anything from or seeing a Presidential candidate in your state, you might want to keep it as a keepsake, or put it in a scrapbook, or something.

  2. Anonymous12:58 PM

    "To the contrary," Scalia says. "Has anybody ever referred to torture as punishment? I don't think so."

    Oh.My.God. An actual, honest to God *Supreme Court Justice of the United States* said that?

    The republic is doomed.

    PS - I've put several comments up on various posts of yours over the last few days, and none of them have showed up...are they just too boring, or what? :)

  3. Scott,

    As far as I know, I have instantly approved all the comments I have gotten from you. And I believe they are showing up, at least, when I look at the blog. So I don't know what's up there.

    What I do need to apologize for, or, at least, note my regrets regarding, is that lately I've found it so difficult to ANSWER comments in a timely fashion, or even at all. At my job we are blocked from blogging by the firewall, and at home, I have three kids and a wife, all of whom want to get on the Internet, and only one 'net access port. I only intermittently get my turn, and when I do, I generally don't have time to answer comments at the kind of length I'd like to. Usually, I'm lucky if I can stay caught up on all the various sites with 'blog' in their URL that I like to read, which I cannot read at work. And do a little blogging myself. In fact, often it comes down to a choice -- answer comments, or put up a new post. I've been opting to put up a new post; maybe I shouldn't. I dunno.

    So if I seem to be ignoring everyone, I do not mean to be, it's just how things have been going. I do deeply appreciate the few of you who do take the time to read and comment on this thing, and at some point in the future (god knows when, though) I hope to be able to provide a higher level of response.

    And right now, as I have a few minutes, I do have to do another brief blog post, so, off to that.