Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Supreme Court

Actually, it was a scary thing.  Back in November of 2011, three Justices of the Supreme Court attended a fundraiser dinner sponsored by the Federalist Society, a self-styled association of conservative and libertarian lawyers, that is trying to overturn President Obama's health care law (Affordable Care Act).  They were Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas  and Justice Samuel Alito.  Makes one wonder how impartial the Supreme Court justices are.  Bob Edgar writes, "This kind of activity by members of our highest court undercuts any claim of impartiality in the health care litigation by the justices involved. Worse yet, it clearly violates the Code of Conduct for U.S. Judges, a set of ethical standards the Supreme Court helps enforce on lower federal courts but has refused to impose on itself. The Code warns judges to abstain from speaking or serving as the guest of honor at any fundraising event." (Huffington Post, 11/14/11)

The Nine Justices of the Supreme Court

As to issues concerning legislation, Supreme Court Justices tend to vote along partisan lines, in favor of the President who appointed them.  After all, we've been through this before in the 2000 elections, when recounting in Bush vs. Gore was stopped by the Supreme Court by a partisan vote.  In the case of Obama Care, all eyes are on Justice Kennedy who will cast the "deciding vote", which means the battle has ended before it began. Where is the blindfold that these Justices are supposed to wear? What steps must we take to preserve the system of checks and balances.  First of all,  I think Supreme Court justices should have a term of service.  They seem to sit like glaciers on our legal system for billions of years.  Next, they should not be political appointees but rather, elected by a legal board comprising representatives from all the states.  Knowing Congressmen and Senators and hobnobbing with them should be considered a disqualification--the judges should don a judicial "purdah".

Hopefully, the Supreme Court justices will make a decision that promises vision and changes the way people think about health care. A consistent 5-4 split is not justice, it is a mockery of it.  Remember that Brown vs. Board of Education returned a unanimous verdict.  "Today Brown is a nearly universal icon of social progress, while Roe remains an object of great controversy. But, for better or for worse, both cases represented efforts to change the everyday reality of American life. With Brown, the justices were tearing down barriers to racial equality; with Roe, the justices were eliminating laws that prevented access to abortion."(Cohn, The New Republic, 3/29/2012)
This bipartisan politics is only obstructing the growth of revolutionary ideas. America needs to change the way it conducts business.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Flush the Rush

Sandra Fluke testimony
Even conservative women must have wrinkled their nose in disgust at Rush Limbaugh's harsh, inappropriate and perverse invective against 
Ms. Sandra Fluke on March 1, 2012. Sandra Fluke is a law student at Georgetown University. She spoke to an unofficial hearing called by the Democratic party about her college's lack of health insurance coverage for contraceptive pills. Not only did Limbaugh reveal his ignorance of the uses of the birth control pill, he revealed his ignorance of health insurance system and to top it all, he let the entire country know that he has a sick yearning to see sex videos.  (Maybe Dharun Ravi could help here).  Although Limbaugh apologized for the words he used--he had called Ms. Sandra Fluke a 'slut' and a 'prostitute'--he maintains that contraceptives should not be covered under health insurance.  Maybe he prefers to pay welfare for women and children and their food stamps instead.  He is so busy condemning women for not taking responsibility for their actions and indulging in sexual promiscuity, he is so busy talking, that he is not putting on his "listening ears" as Judge Judy would say, and recognize that taking contraceptives is a way of assuming responsibility.  Besides, birth control is not the only use for the pill... 
Likes to be a voyeur

34  sponsors of his radio show decided the words he used mattered more than his views and withdrew support.

No one was more horrified than musician Peter Gabriel  whose song "Sledgehammer' was playing during Limbaugh's rant. "Peter was appalled to learn that his music was linked to Rush Limbaugh's extraordinary attack on Sandra Fluke. It is obvious from anyone that knows Peter's work that he would never approve such a use. He has asked his representatives to make sure his music is withdrawn and especially from these unfair aggressive and ignorant comments."

I wonder if he thinks when 'slutty' women prostitute themselves for sex, they share intimacy with parrots instead of men like him.  He has been married four times, he can't think babies are brought by storks.  Men don't need to be accountable?  I have an idea.  Maybe the women can save money (and the country too), conducting their lives Lorena Bobbitt style.

"No one with daughters the age of Sandra Fluke, and I have two, could possibly abide the insult and abuse heaped upon this courageous and well-intentioned young lady. Mr. Limbaugh, with his highly personal attacks on Miss Fluke, overstepped any reasonable bounds of decency. Even though Mr. Limbaugh has now issued an apology, we have nonetheless decided to withdraw our advertising from his show," Carbonite CEO David Friend said in a statement. "We hope that our action, along with the other advertisers who have already withdrawn their ads, will ultimately contribute to a more civilized public discourse."

President Obama called Ms. Fluke personally and said Fluke’s parents should be proud of her.

Stinky Limbaugh-ger!!