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1251  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, & "discrimination" on: June 30, 2012, 12:51:39 PM
But here she was studying to become a counselor and she hewed to her views while counseling.

And the ACA has particular national standards that a counselor is required to meet. And, she wanted to be a school counselor. Do you think that her unwillingness to counsel homosexuals, etc. might have inhibited her abilities to meet the students' needs?
1252  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, & "discrimination" on: June 30, 2012, 07:08:51 AM
OK, but when I went to a state school I saw many discussions in class that were fruitful and often based, by one or more party, on their view of the Bible. Not one of them got expelled.

There was one expulsion though; a neo Nazi who later when on a two state killing spree.
1253  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Christian student expelled over gay views on: June 29, 2012, 07:50:59 PM

I don't think the title is accurate. Shewas expelled not for her views, but for the expression of these views. We don't what she said, or how we said it (according to the article). There as long been the view that not all speech is protected. Libel, slander, "fighting words," "hate" speech all fall into that category. Not only can you not falsely yell fire in a crowded theater, you also can't incite a riot. Without knowing what she said, we can't really know if the action of the university is cause for alarm.
1254  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Levin makes another excellent point regarding the Obamacare decision. on: June 29, 2012, 07:45:06 PM
OBAMACARE, THE COMMERCE CLAUSE, AND SUPREME COURT DECISION

by Mark Levin on Friday, June 29, 2012 at 11:15am

This may seem a little technical, but it is necessary.  So follow along with me.  A number of politicians and commentators are claiming that the Supreme Court in the Obamacare case "limited" the reach of the commerce clause, i.e., five justices held that individuals cannot be mandated to buy insurance under the commerce clause.  Actually, the five justices did not limit anything.  They simply did not accept the Obama administration's ridiculous argument that inactivity is commerce.  The status quo stands.  However, the bigger point is this.

I completely agree. However, it is also the case that by ruling in this fashion, the USSC continued a status quo that itself limited the reach of the Commerce Clause, at least as compared to prior precedent coming in the New Deal, Warren and Burger Courts. The Rehnquist Court moved to retract the limits of the CC. See http://articles.latimes.com/1995-04-27/news/mn-59611_1_supreme-court for an example.
 
When a court issues an opinion, it is said to be the "Opinion of the Court."  The Opinion of the Court is the controlling precedent.  Chief Justice Roberts wrote the Opinion of the Court for Parts I (background on the Obamacare law), II (the Anti-Injunction Act is not a bar to the lawsuit proceeding and being decided) and III-C (Obamacare is valid under the tax power).

Mostly true. The Opinion of the Court is as controlling as the author and subsequent users want it to be. Sometimes, the Court takes great pains to limit the precedential value of the opinion. See Bush v. Gore. And, there is the idea that only the central holdings are precedent, not the extra portions of the opinion, which are called dicta. What consitutes dicta is often decided by the future court, not the author of a particular opinion.
 
But respecting Parts III- A, the commerce clause and necessary and proper section,  Roberts is writing for himself, not for a majority.

Yep.
 
Furthermore, the Dissent is labeled as: “Justice Scalia, Justice Kennedy, Justice Thomas, and Justice Alito, dissenting.” It is Not labeled as “dissenting in the judgment, concurring in part” or some permutation.

Yep.
 
You can’t say it was the “opinion of the court” that the mandate violated the commerce clause. You have to cobble together sections where Roberts is writing for himself and the dissent (which isn’t formally joined Robert’s writing), is writing for itself.
Justice Thomas, in his separate dissenting opinion, wrote:
 “The joint dissent and THE CHIEF JUSTICE cor­rectly apply our precedents to conclude that the Individual Mandate is beyond the power granted to Congress under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause.”
 
Notably, this does not explicitly state that the dissenters joined with the Chief’s opinion respecting the commerce clause (or necessary and proper clause).
If five justices had intended for their view of the commerce clause (and necessary and proper clause) to be controlling as the majority view, they would have said so by joining or concurring in each others' parts.  They didn't.  So, while we can cobble them together, as a formal legal matter, it is a troubling issue.  While the status quo stands re the commerce clause (and necessary and proper clause), there was no formal majority on those issues.
 
A point worth noting. A better way to word the position might be that it is the "opinion of a majority of the court" (note: wording matters; NOT "majority opinion of the court" which connotes what Levin is pointing out is a fallacy).
1255  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Issa puts wire tap secrets in congressional record on: June 29, 2012, 05:27:42 PM
http://www.rollcall.com/news/darrell_issa_puts_details_of_secret_wiretap_applications_in_congressional-215828-1.html

In the midst of a fiery floor debate over contempt proceedings for Attorney General Eric Holder, House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) quietly dropped a bombshell letter into the Congressional Record.
 
The May 24 letter to Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), ranking member on the panel, quotes from and describes in detail a secret wiretap application that has become a point of debate in the GOP’s “Fast and Furious” gun-walking probe.
 
The wiretap applications are under court seal, and releasing such information to the public would ordinarily be illegal. But Issa appears to be protected by the Speech or Debate Clause in the Constitution, which offers immunity for Congressional speech, especially on a chamber’s floor.
 
According to the letter, the wiretap applications contained a startling amount of detail about the operation, which would have tipped off anyone who read them closely about what tactics were being used.

continued on web site.
1256  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Jesse Glover on: June 29, 2012, 02:51:21 PM
http://blogs.seattletimes.com/today/2012/06/jesse-glover-bruce-lees-first-student-dies-at-77/

Jesse Glover, the first student of martial arts legend Bruce Lee, died on Wednesday at age 77 after a battle with cancer, according to close friend and past student Steve Smith.

Glover, a lifelong Seattlite, used what he learned from Lee and his days as a judo champion to become a prominent leader in the martial arts community himself. While developing a method called non-classical Gung Fu, he worked as a private martial arts trainer in Seattle and eventually taught across the nation and as far as Germany, according to Glover’s training website.

Lee and Glover met in 1959 while attending Edison Technical School, now Seattle Central Community College. Glover had already seen Lee demonstrate Gung Fu on stage when he ran into him on campus and asked to be his first student. They became good friends and trained together for four years.
1257  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / America's Last Prisoner of War on: June 29, 2012, 02:44:47 PM
http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/americas-last-prisoner-of-war-20120607

Here because I don't have a better place for it:


The mother and father sit at the kitchen table in their Idaho farmhouse, watching their son on YouTube plead for his life. The Taliban captured 26-year-old Bowe Bergdahl almost three years ago, on June 30th, 2009, and since that day, his parents, Jani and Bob, have had no contact with him. Like the rest of the world, their lone glimpses of Bowe – the only American prisoner of war left in either Iraq or Afghanistan – have come through a series of propaganda videos, filmed while he's been in captivity.

In the video they're watching now, Bowe doesn't look good. He's emaciated, maybe 30 pounds underweight, his face sunken, his eye sockets like caves. He's wearing a scraggly beard and he's talking funny, with some kind of foreign accent. Jani presses her left hand across her forehead, as if shielding herself from the images onscreen, her eyes filling with tears. Bob, unable to look away, hits play on the MacBook Pro for perhaps the 30th time. Over and over again, he watches as his only son, dressed in a ragged uniform, begs for someone to rescue him.

"Release me, please!" Bowe screams at the camera. "I'm begging you – bring me home!"

1258  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Darrell Issa Puts Details of Secret Wiretap Applications in Congressional Record on: June 29, 2012, 02:42:00 PM
I am trying to keep thread integrity, and I hope this is the place. It might also belong in the Constitutional Issues thread and/or Gun Rights?

http://www.rollcall.com/news/darrell_issa_puts_details_of_secret_wiretap_applications_in_congressional-215828-1.html

In the midst of a fiery floor debate over contempt proceedings for Attorney General Eric Holder, House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) quietly dropped a bombshell letter into the Congressional Record.
 
The May 24 letter to Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), ranking member on the panel, quotes from and describes in detail a secret wiretap application that has become a point of debate in the GOP’s “Fast and Furious” gun-walking probe.
 
The wiretap applications are under court seal, and releasing such information to the public would ordinarily be illegal. But Issa appears to be protected by the Speech or Debate Clause in the Constitution, which offers immunity for Congressional speech, especially on a chamber’s floor.
 
According to the letter, the wiretap applications contained a startling amount of detail about the operation, which would have tipped off anyone who read them closely about what tactics were being used.

continued on web site.
1259  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / good samaritan gets sucker punched twice on: June 29, 2012, 02:21:42 PM
http://www.cagepotato.com/street-fight-of-the-day-woman-beating-a-hole-gets-tapped-out-twice-by-good-samaritan/



We’re going to come right out and say it: By no means should you watch this entire video. We know that your time is precious, Potato Nation, as you are all, like us, the head honchos of your respective trades. But on the off chance that any of you have had a shit day and are in need of a pick-me-up, maybe, just maybe, you’ll get some enjoyment out of seeing a little street justice. This video, shot by one of the many onlookers, captures Devin Crime (or as the crowd referred to him “white boy”), a BJJ purple belt and Judo brown belt, coming to the aid of a woman who was apparently being struck by the Floyd Mayweather fan doing battle with Devin in said video. And by doing battle, we mean being choked until he taps like a little bitch on two separate occasions.
 
The video begins after this first takedown has already been landed, and even though Devin displays some Zen-like tranquility when dealing with the a-hole in question, he gets sucker punched for his troubles (:48). Devin responds with a hailstorm of GnP that would make Tito Ortiz turn green with envy, bloodying up his foe before possibly kissing him on the cheek (?) at the 1:13 mark. After some lay and pray, he patiently locks in the fight-ending choke with just over two minutes remaining in the first round.
1260  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / House: Holder in Contempt on: June 28, 2012, 05:32:09 PM
http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/235475-house-votes-holder-in-contempt-of-congress
1261  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / decision in a nutshell and reax on: June 28, 2012, 11:44:37 AM
http://www.cnn.com/interactive/2012/06/us/scotus.healthcare/?hpt=hp_t1
1262  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 28, 2012, 11:40:59 AM
In case you are interested, here is the decision. Only 193 pages: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/11pdf/11-393c3a2.pdf.

The syllabus, pages 1-6, has the "Cliffs Notes" version of the holding.

1263  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Louis CK on: June 27, 2012, 01:17:53 PM
This is fan-damn-tastic:

1264  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / much more on Fast and Furious on: June 27, 2012, 12:25:08 PM












much more on Fast and Furious

« Reply #784 on: Today at 08:07:26 AM »




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://features.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2012/06/27/fast-and-furious-truth/?hpt=hp_t2

In the annals of impossible assignments, Dave Voth's ranked high. In 2009 the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives promoted Voth to lead Phoenix Group VII, one of seven new ATF groups along the Southwest border tasked with stopping guns from being trafficked into Mexico's vicious drug war.
 
Some call it the "parade of ants"; others the "river of iron." The Mexican government has estimated that 2,000 weapons are smuggled daily from the U.S. into Mexico. The ATF is hobbled in its effort to stop this flow. No federal statute outlaws firearms trafficking, so agents must build cases using a patchwork of often toothless laws. For six years, due to Beltway politics, the bureau has gone without permanent leadership, neutered in its fight for funding and authority. The National Rifle Association has so successfully opposed a comprehensive electronic database of gun sales that the ATF's congressional appropriation explicitly prohibits establishing one.


http://nationaljournal.com/congress-legacy/first-democratic-lawmaker-says-holder-should-be-held-in-contempt-20120627

The first Democratic member of Congress has said that he will vote to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for withholding documents related to the “Fast and Furious” investigation that has plagued the Justice Department, the Salt Lake Tribune reports.
 
Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, joined House Republicans on Tuesday with his announcement. Most Democratic members are expected to support Holder.

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/26/hoyer-challenges-issa-to-show-e-mails/?smid=fb-share

With the House just days away from a vote on holding Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt, Representative Darrell Issa, Republican of California, appeared on national television on Sunday to say he had e-mails showing that the architects of a federal gun-smuggling investigation intended to use the operation to build a case for reinstating the lapsed ban on assault-weapons sales.
 
“We have e-mail from people involved in this that are talking about using what they’re finding here to support the — basically assault weapons ban or greater reporting,” Mr. Issa, the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said on ABC’s “This Week.”
 
On Tuesday, Representative Steny H. Hoyer, Democrat of Maryland and the House minority whip, challenged Mr. Issa to prove it.

 
1265  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 27, 2012, 12:22:36 PM
BD:

We're looking here at a somewhat tricky question of thread coherency.  Lets use this thread for the Executive Privilege claim, and the rest of it goes in the Gun Rights thread.  Yes?



Yes, sir. Sorry. While I attempt thread coherency, sometimes the issues are very complex. I'll delete and shift.
1266  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / much more on Fast and Furious on: June 27, 2012, 10:07:26 AM
http://features.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2012/06/27/fast-and-furious-truth/?hpt=hp_t2

In the annals of impossible assignments, Dave Voth's ranked high. In 2009 the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives promoted Voth to lead Phoenix Group VII, one of seven new ATF groups along the Southwest border tasked with stopping guns from being trafficked into Mexico's vicious drug war.
 
Some call it the "parade of ants"; others the "river of iron." The Mexican government has estimated that 2,000 weapons are smuggled daily from the U.S. into Mexico. The ATF is hobbled in its effort to stop this flow. No federal statute outlaws firearms trafficking, so agents must build cases using a patchwork of often toothless laws. For six years, due to Beltway politics, the bureau has gone without permanent leadership, neutered in its fight for funding and authority. The National Rifle Association has so successfully opposed a comprehensive electronic database of gun sales that the ATF's congressional appropriation explicitly prohibits establishing one.


http://nationaljournal.com/congress-legacy/first-democratic-lawmaker-says-holder-should-be-held-in-contempt-20120627

The first Democratic member of Congress has said that he will vote to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for withholding documents related to the “Fast and Furious” investigation that has plagued the Justice Department, the Salt Lake Tribune reports.
 
Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, joined House Republicans on Tuesday with his announcement. Most Democratic members are expected to support Holder.

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/26/hoyer-challenges-issa-to-show-e-mails/?smid=fb-share

With the House just days away from a vote on holding Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt, Representative Darrell Issa, Republican of California, appeared on national television on Sunday to say he had e-mails showing that the architects of a federal gun-smuggling investigation intended to use the operation to build a case for reinstating the lapsed ban on assault-weapons sales.
 
“We have e-mail from people involved in this that are talking about using what they’re finding here to support the — basically assault weapons ban or greater reporting,” Mr. Issa, the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said on ABC’s “This Week.”
 
On Tuesday, Representative Steny H. Hoyer, Democrat of Maryland and the House minority whip, challenged Mr. Issa to prove it.
1267  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / For Romney Superfan, a New Truck Courtesy of the Candidate on: June 27, 2012, 09:14:03 AM
http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/27/for-romney-superfan-a-new-truck-courtesy-of-the-candidate/?smid=fb-share

Mighty nice of the Romney campaign.
1268  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Or a dead heat? on: June 27, 2012, 09:12:22 AM
http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/26/latest-poll-shows-dead-heat/?smid=fb-share
1269  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Obama Besting Romney In Swing States: Quinnipiac Poll on: June 27, 2012, 09:10:59 AM
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/27/obama-romney-polls_n_1630085.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009&utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false
1270  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Obama and Convention No-Shows: Divorce or Amicable Separation? on: June 26, 2012, 09:56:44 PM
http://nationaljournal.com/politics/obama-and-convention-no-shows-divorce-or-amicable-separation--20120626

If historical precedent is a guide, President Obama should be worried about the recent spate of Democrats who have declared that they won’t attend their own party’s national convention. But the lawmakers’ decision to stay home doesn’t have other Democrats reaching for the panic button yet.

Such defections amounted to an early alarm bell as recently as 2008, when a deluge of Republicans steered clear of the Republican National Convention lest they be associated with a then-deeply unpopular GOP. Three months later, a Democratic wave swept the White House and congressional elections
1271  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 09:22:14 PM
Yes. But, how that would play out is anyone's guess. Politics are a bitch sometimes.
1272  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, & "discrimination" on: June 26, 2012, 04:41:28 PM
I don't mean to intrude, but I must confess to not seeing the logic of blaming Title IX on this. There are many local land grant colleges with many sports which feature male athletes from other states. Is Title IX to blame for Big 12 and Big Ten recruiting football players in the South? And, colleges and universities have been recruiting international talent for years. Of course, many of those were for academic

Intrusions always welcome!

Schorlarships in men's revenue sports are not caused by Title IX, they are limited by it. The local policy choice may have the same effect, but I don't see the parallel to Title IX.



Thanks... I like your spirit, DMG. What you say about scholarships in men's sports is only sort of true. For example, the NCAA limited the number of scholarships for football not because of Title IX, but because of programs like Oklahoma having something like 90 scholarship athletes and winning 50 games in a row. It is true that sports such as wrestling (a sport I love, by the way) have cut scholarships, or even the program all together. However, it is also true that many of the non-revenue women's sports (which, as JDN correctly points out is pretty much all of them), there would be no scholarships for the women to play them, no matter where they are from.


1273  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 02:54:22 PM
A USSC Justice could be a recess appointment?!?!?!?  shocked shocked shocked



Presidents since George Washington have made recess appointments. Washington appointed South Carolina judge John Rutledge as Chief Justice of the United States during a congressional recess in 1795. Because of Rutledge's political views and occasional mental illness, however, the Senate rejected his nomination, and Rutledge subsequently attempted suicide and then resigned.
 
New Jersey judge William J. Brennan was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 through a recess appointment. This was done in part with an eye on the presidential campaign that year; Eisenhower was running for reelection, and his advisors thought it would be politically advantageous to place a northeastern Catholic on the court. Brennan was promptly confirmed when the Senate came back into session. President Eisenhower, in a recess appointment, designated Charles W. Yost as United States ambassador to Syria.[6] Eisenhower made two other recess appointments, Chief Justice Earl Warren and Potter Stewart.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recess_appointment
1274  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, & "discrimination" on: June 26, 2012, 01:18:19 PM
I don't mean to intrude, but I must confess to not seeing the logic of blaming Title IX on this. There are many local land grant colleges with many sports which feature male athletes from other states. Is Title IX to blame for Big 12 and Big Ten recruiting football players in the South? And, colleges and universities have been recruiting international talent for years. Of course, many of those were for academic scholarships....
1275  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 12:37:57 PM
Did you see the way recess appointments have been used? USSC justices can be appointed in such a manner. A "real" appointment would likely take more time than 2 months, but if it looked dire in September, say, there might be a "surprise" retirement.
1276  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Thirty-one GOP senators call for special counsel to investigate security leaks on: June 26, 2012, 12:25:01 PM
http://thehill.com/blogs/defcon-hill/policy-and-strategy/234761-thirty-one-gop-senators-call-for-special-counsel-to-investigate-security-leaks
1277  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 10:01:55 AM
Oh, sorry. He retired at the height of GHW Bush's popularity, when it seemed that he would be reelected with no problem. Then, well, he didn't. But, this allowed C. Thomas to sit on the Court. 

So, no matter how bad it looks for Obama at the moment, there is at least a 50/50 chance of reelection. I doubt the any of the Supremes would retire this far out from an entirely winnable election.
1278  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 09:28:28 AM
So, if there is a resignation, BO will get to appoint another Justice? shocked shocked shocked

Likely. I also disagree with Doug that there will be retirements. I thought that it would happen last year, but they all seem so ensconsced on the Court now I would be somewhat surprised to see a retirement. I think the lesson of Thurgood Marshall's retirement would also ring too true for the libs to retire. 
1279  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / computers can learn: Google labs! on: June 26, 2012, 06:22:54 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/26/technology/in-a-big-network-of-computers-evidence-of-machine-learning.html?_r=1&hp


Presented with 10 million digital images found in YouTube videos, what did Google’s brain do? What millions of humans do with YouTube: looked for cats.

The neural network taught itself to recognize cats, which is actually no frivolous activity. This week the researchers will present the results of their work at a conference in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Google scientists and programmers will note that while it is hardly news that the Internet is full of cat videos, the simulation nevertheless surprised them. It performed far better than any previous effort by roughly doubling its accuracy in recognizing objects in a challenging list of 20,000 distinct items.
1280  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 26, 2012, 06:21:10 AM
Thank you.

Please refresh my memory on cluture too. 

I should also add that the Judiciary committee hears the testimony first, and like in a piece of legislation, will vote to move the nomination vote to the Senate floor. The Judiciary committee never has voted to not move it to the floor (if that makes sense; though the C. Thomas nomination almost failed in committee), but in theory it IS possible.

Cloture requires 60 votes.

I think Doug is right when he says "R's could stop only on cloture. A tough precedent to set just before switching to the majority." when discussing a SC confirmation battle. The GOP might loathe a potential nominee, but it would be awefully tough to live this down, and to live with it when they take the Senate.   OTOH, I think he is participating in some wishful thinking when he states that there will be "16 years of the Romney Rubio surge to limited govt greatness."
1281  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 25, 2012, 06:23:34 PM
I forget  embarassed  How many votes in the Senate are required to confirm a nomination to SCOTUS?

Simple majority.
1282  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Oops, Richard Mourdock’s Multiple Choice SCOTUS Response on: June 22, 2012, 08:02:02 AM
http://atr.rollcall.com/indiana-ooops-mourdocks-multiple-choice-scotus-response/

At least one candidate is prepared for however the Supreme Court rules next week on the health care overhaul law — although Indiana’s GOP Senate nominee, Richard Mourdock, probably didn’t want the world to know it.
 
Mourdock’s campaign uploaded four videos to respond to the high court’s imminent decision — and each one has a different answer depending on the ruling.
1283  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Romney’s Bain Capital invested in companies that moved jobs overseas on: June 22, 2012, 07:59:34 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/romneys-bain-capital-invested-in-companies-that-moved-jobs-overseas/2012/06/21/gJQAsD9ptV_story.html

Mitt Romney’s financial company, Bain Capital, invested in a series of firms that specialized in relocating jobs done by American workers to new facilities in low-wage countries like China and India.

During the nearly 15 years that Romney was actively involved in running Bain, a private equity firm that he founded, it owned companies that were pioneers in the practice of shipping work from the United States to overseas call centers and factories making computer components, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
1284  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Hispanic population soars in presidential swing states on: June 22, 2012, 07:57:56 AM
http://thehill.com/homenews/news/234231-hispanic-population-soars-in-presidential-swing-states

Hispanic populations are soaring in toss-up states that will decide the presidential election.
 
Changing demographics in states not usually associated with Hispanic voters has changed the traditional political calculus heading into Election Day. 
1285  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Obama looks to capitalize on shift in presidential race’s momentum on: June 22, 2012, 07:53:47 AM
http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/234227-obama-looks-to-capitalize-on-shift-in-presidential-races-momentum

President Obama will look to cap a week in which momentum in the presidential race appeared to shift in his favor with a Thursday address to the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials in Florida.

 Obama will speak to the group one week after his surprising decision to halt deportations of illegal immigrants brought to the nation as children, a move that caught opponent Mitt Romney flat-footed, forcing him to play defense all week on the issue.
 
1286  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 22, 2012, 07:52:07 AM
I spend a fair amount of time discussing the rise of presidential power, and lamenting it (see several posts on the Public Forum).  I do the same here.  I agree with Doug (and Crafty) that this use of EP is, again, expanding the powers of the president... largely just to expand them.  I hope that Obama reconsiders.  And I hope that Congress will assert itself here, and elsewhere.

Worth noting it that, arguably, the SCOTUS has been less deferential to presidents in recent years in areas of EP and the like.  It would be interesting to see if the case goes to Court. 
1287  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / executive privilege/Fast and Furious on: June 21, 2012, 09:55:27 PM
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said today there was no cover-up by the White House in the “Fast and Furious” gun-walking investigation, saying President Barack Obama’s decision to invoke executive privilege to block Congressional access to documents was “entirely about principle.”

http://www.rollcall.com/news/no_fast_and_furious_cover_up_jay_carney_asserts-215580-1.html?ET=rollcall:e13440:80133681a:&st=email&pos=epm

_________________________________________________________________
There is something charmingly futile about House Republicans’ move to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress.

Even if the full House follows the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform’s vote Wednesday to hold him in contempt, the decision about whether to prosecute him will be left to a Justice Department run by . . . Eric Holder.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/in-congress-blowing-gunsmoke/2012/06/20/gJQA4eULrV_story.html (this is an especially interesting article with details I hadn't heard)

_________________________________________________________________

Two good articles on executive privilege: history, scope, sources, etc. The first is a short newspaper article, the second FAR longer and more detailed.

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2012/06/21/what_is_executive_privilege/

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/secrecy/RL30319.pdf
1288  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 21, 2012, 07:25:23 AM
And Clinton did it 14 times.  It shouldn't be the number of times executive privilege is used (the fact that EP exists and should exist is not controversial), it should be the scope of the invocation. 

An article about the political use/fallout of FF and the executive privilege claim: http://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/233995-obama-fits-fight-to-his-november-election-narrative
1289  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Fast and Furious: Contempt charge and executive privilege on: June 20, 2012, 05:59:32 PM
Please note that I am not asserting that the president is involved or not.  My "no" was answering the question about executive privilege based solely on presidential involvement (please see the link I provided above for more details).

For more on the contempt charge and exec privilege claim:
http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/233627-issa-says-hes-disappointed-plans-to-move-forward-with-contempt-vote

http://www.rollcall.com/news/barack_obama_asserts_executive_privilege_on_fast_and_furious_documents-215528-1.html?ET=rollcall:e13421:80133681a:&st=email&pos=epm
1290  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Contempt of Congress (Issa vs. Holder) on: June 20, 2012, 01:08:19 PM
Lets use this thread for any discussion of the Contempt Citation issues with regard to Rep. Issa's committee and AG Holder. 

Big development this morning with the last minute assertion of Executive Privilege!  Why wasn't this brought up previously?  Doesn't this require an asssertion that the President was involved?

No.  Recall, for example, VP Cheney's contention that his energy task force meeting records were subject to executive privilege.  More on executive privilege: http://www.theblaze.com/blog/2012/06/20/what-is-executive-privilege-and-what-does-it-mean-for-ff-investigation/
1291  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Liberal 9th at it again on: June 20, 2012, 06:20:48 AM
http://m.reason.com/26821/show/288f810f6e1a36127afcbb16c362fa43/
1292  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 20, 2012, 06:19:49 AM
Understood.  If you happen to remember, please remind of this when I get back.

http://www.jnslp.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Virtual-Checkpoints-and-Cyber-Terry-Stops.pdf
1293  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Older Warrior on: June 14, 2012, 03:42:59 PM
"Don't reach, youngblood.  Don't reach." evil 
1294  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Declassification on: June 13, 2012, 11:35:11 AM
FWIW, here is the EO that describes, among other things, how material is declassified:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/executive-order-classified-national-security-information
1295  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Robber gets spanked on: June 11, 2012, 10:28:37 PM
http://www.metacafe.com/watch/8642504/robber_gets_spanked/
1296  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: History on: June 10, 2012, 01:58:36 PM
Good stuff, Guro.

http://www.churchillmemorial.org/Pages/default.aspx

Here is the link to the National Churchill Museum, in case you are interested. 
1297  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: June 08, 2012, 11:49:04 AM
Making it only 5 times more popular than Congress. 
1298  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / State Should Enhance Its Performance Measures for Assessing Efforts in Pakistan on: June 07, 2012, 12:02:36 PM
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-614

Highlights below, but the full 27 page report is downloadble from the site provided above.

What GAO Found
Multiple U.S. agencies and international partners are engaged in efforts to assist Pakistan in countering improvised explosive devices (IEDs) but face a variety of ongoing challenges. The agencies providing counter-IED assistance to Pakistan are primarily the Departments of State (State), Defense (DOD), Homeland Security (DHS), and Justice (DOJ). The following table identifies the types of assistance these U.S. agencies have provided and the corresponding objectives of Pakistan’s National Counter-IED Strategy. According to U.S. officials, U.S. agencies have encountered ongoing challenges to their efforts to assist Pakistan, such as delays in obtaining visas and in the delivery of equipment. U.S. officials have also identified broader challenges to Pakistan’s ability to counter IEDs, including the extreme difficulty of interdicting smugglers along its porous border with Afghanistan. In addition, though Pakistan developed a National Counter-IED Strategy in June 2011, it has yet to finalize an implementation plan for carrying out the strategy.

The U.S. fiscal year 2013 Mission Strategic and Resource Plan (MSRP) for Pakistan includes a new performance indicator to track some of Pakistan’s efforts to counter IEDs, but the indicator and targets used to measure progress do not cover the full range of U.S. assisted efforts. The performance indicator focuses on cross-border activities, specifically on Pakistan’s efforts to prevent illicit commerce in sensitive materials, including chemical precursors used to manufacture IEDs in Afghanistan. As such, progress of U.S. counter-IED assistance efforts not specifically linked to cross-border smuggling are not covered, such as counter-IED training and/or equipment, a counter-IED public awareness campaign, and legal assistance for laws and regulations to counter-IEDs and IED precursors. Consequently, effects of key U.S. assisted counter-IED efforts are not tracked under the existing performance indicator and related targets. The absence of comprehensive performance measures that reflect the broad range of U.S. assisted counter-IED efforts limits State’s ability to track overall progress in Pakistan to counter IEDs and to determine the extent to which these counter-IED efforts are helping to achieve the U.S. goals.

Why GAO Did This Study
Improvised explosive devices have been a significant cause of fatalities among U.S. troops in Afghanistan. About 80 percent of the IEDs contain homemade explosives, primarily calcium ammonium nitrate (CAN) fertilizer smuggled from Pakistan. U.S. officials recognize the threat posed by the smuggling of CAN and other IED precursors from Pakistan into Afghanistan, and State and other agencies are assisting Pakistan’s government to counter this threat. This report (1) describes the status of U.S. efforts to assist Pakistan in countering IEDs and (2) reviews State’s tracking of U.S. assisted efforts in Pakistan to counter IEDs. To address these objectives, GAO reviewed agency strategy and programmatic documents, including State’s fiscal year 2013 MSRP for Pakistan. GAO also met with U.S. officials in Washington, D.C., Arlington, Virginia, and Tampa, Florida; and met with U.S. and Pakistani officials in Islamabad, Pakistan.

What GAO Recommends
To improve State’s ability to track progress of efforts in Pakistan to counter IEDs, GAO recommends that the Secretary of State direct the U.S. Mission in Pakistan to enhance its counter-IED performance measures to cover the full range of U.S. assisted efforts. State concurred and committed to look for ways to broaden the scope of existing metrics in order to better reflect and evaluate interagency participation in counter-IED efforts.
1299  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Fahrenheit 451: Did Bradbury’s Dystopia Come True? on: June 07, 2012, 10:40:15 AM
http://mashable.com/2012/06/06/fahrenheit-451-dystopia/

The nature of science fiction has always been thus: no matter how far ahead authors try to think, they are always trapped in their own times. Elements of their books will invariably look dated from the moment they are published.

Ray Bradbury, who died in Los Angeles Wednesday at the grand old age of 91, was as susceptible to this as any other grand master of the genre. Read his 1953 classic of future firemen who burn books, Fahrenheit 451, and you’ll run into plenty of quaint details. Firemen smoking tobacco pipes, lit with “chemical matches.” Cheesy ads for “Denham’s Dentrifice.” 1950s lingo such as “swell”.

But brush those quirks aside, and what you’re left with is one of the most shockingly prescient dystopias ever written — a far more accurate portrayal of our present problems than 1984 or anything in the works of Philip K Dick.

The most important thing to know about Fahrenheit 451 is that it is explicitly not about government censorship. (Bradbury was so firm on this point he once walked out of a UCLA class when his students tried to insist it was so.)

The firemen aren’t burning books on the orders of some shadowy Big Brother. They’re doing it, protagonist Guy Montag is told, because society as a whole turned away from the scary cacophony of knowledge, from the terror of differing opinions and the burden of having to choose between them, from deep and troubling thoughts.

We turned away from literature and towards vapid reality television and radio shows, the book says. We spurned any kind of poetry (Montag’s wife Millie slams Matthew Arnold’s classic Dover Beach as depressing and “disgusting”) and preferred to listen to the noise of our cars as they speed across the landscape at 100 mph.

Even when Guy wants to read his stolen books, he can’t, because the ubiquitous ads drown out his thoughts.

Any of this starting to sound familiar?

Guy and Millie Montag are disconnected by technology. They can’t talk in bed at night because Millie is listening to her “audio seashells” (headphones, basically).

She participates in a reality show with an on-screen “family”, begging her husband for more wall-sized TV screens to complete the experience. The “family” bicker and shout, but there’s very little plot to their show.

Millie can’t even remember how she and Guy met, ten years earlier. That’s some pretty advanced ADD — years before ADD was even defined as a condition.

Meanwhile, somewhere in the background, there’s a longstanding war going on with another unnamed nation; a war that hardly any of the population is paying attention to. They’re much more interested in watching a high-tech police force hunt down criminals live on TV.

Add it all up, and it’s a pretty convincing picture of the 21st century’s dark side. No, our firemen don’t burn books. But if you take that as a metaphor for a fast-paced society that increasingly ignores books, that simply doesn’t have the bandwidth for them — it completes a scarily accurate portrait.

So you want to honor Bradbury’s memory? Read a novel. Read poetry. Read something that disagrees with your viewpoint; heck, read something that disagrees with itself.

But whatever you do, don’t get too hung up on the format. On combustible paper or on a tablet, a novel is a novel. Bradbury may hardly have been the world’s biggest tech geek, but he did eventually allow Fahrenheit 451 to be released as an e-book.

On his website, you can watch videos of the writer explaining that technology, that the world of the Internet, is not inherently at fault; it’s how we use them that counts.

So use them wisely. Focus. Take off your audio seashells. Turn off that reality show. Build our desire for knowledge; don’t burn it.
1300  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / India, Japan to Conduct First Joint Naval Exercises on: June 05, 2012, 10:21:58 PM
http://www.defensenews.com/article/20120605/DEFREG03/306050016/India-Japan-Conduct-First-Joint-Naval-Exercises?odyssey=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CFRONTPAGE

NEW DELHI — As part of their increased defense ties, the navies of India and Japan will hold their first joint exercises June 9-10 in Japanese waters.

The joint naval exercises follow agreements reached during the visit of Indian Defense Minister A.K. Antony to Japan in November 2011. Both navies will also conduct routine passage exercises during the visit of Japanese ships to Indian ports this year.
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