According to this article in the ABA Journal, we should expect “a rosy [job] outlook for law grads in 2016.”
Friday, November 21, 2014
New DHS immigration rules: Drunk drivers, sex abusers, drug dealers, gun offenders not top deportation priorities | WashingtonExaminer.com
The new priorities are striking. On the tough side, the president wants U.S. immigration authorities to go after terrorists, felons, and new illegal border crossers. On the not-so-tough side, the administration views convicted drunk drivers, sex abusers, drug dealers, and gun offenders as second-level enforcement priorities. An illegal immigrant could spend up to a year in prison for a violent crime and still not be a top removal priority for the Obama administration.
President Obama’s hubris has forced a constitutional crisis. Republicans need to start saying that — and acting like it.
Well, I need to read more, but I don't think so. It's a sharp conflict between the WH and Congress and between the parties, but the Constitution probably permits this mess to develop. People are always invoking the Constitution.
But I’m in a unique position when it comes to Gruber. My public criticism of him goes back to 2010, when he exhibited precisely the traits of deception and evasiveness that have gotten him in trouble now. In fact, he has become an avatar of not only Obamacare, but of liberal paternalism, a caricature of the snotty know-it-all technocrat who will make decisions for people without consulting them. That some of this perspective actually shows up in the health care law is a major reason for its difficulties, and a bigger problem for Democrats going forward.
WASHINGTON—House Republicans on Friday filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration over implementation of its health-care law, which GOP leaders have called executive overreach by President Barack Obama .
I fear this is a waste of time and a little bit of money.
I think if you polled the Cal Bears fanbase before the season started in August, many would be happy with the thought of five wins for the entire season, and maybe being more competitive in the 117th Big Game (Saturday, 1 p.m. PT, Fox Sports One) against Stanford than the rivalry-worst 63-13 shellacking last season.
I'm afraid the hatred of Stanford, which reaches pathological levels at Cal, has caught up with me.
Eight Observations About OLC Memo on Constitutionality of Executive Action on Immigration | Josh Blackman's Blog
RTWT. I found it made me feel better, oddly perhaps. This via volokh.com
Obama, immigration, and the rule of law [updated with additional material on precedents for Obama's action] - The Washington Post
Opponents of President Obama’s recently announced plan to defer the deportation of up to 5 million undocumented immigrants argue that it undermines the rule of law. After all, they contend, the president is required to enforce federal law as written, not pick and choose which violators to go after and which to exempt. But, in reality, all modern presidents inevitably make policy choices about which violations of federal law to prosecute. Obama’s decision to defer deportation is in line with those of past presidents, and well within the scope of his authority.
Historical vindication happens. The Obama White House assumes it will happen to them. Thus they can do pretty much what they want.
What they forget is that facts largely decide what history thinks—outcomes, what happened, what it means. What they also forget, or perhaps never knew, is that the great ones are always constructive. They don’t divide and tear down. They build, gather in, create, bend, meld, and in so doing move things forward.
That’s not this crowd.
Thursday, November 20, 2014
Anyone who thinks the legal arguments behind Obama’s immigration order are radical hasn’t read them yet.
Even though the action is breathtaking in scope, there is nothing legally remarkable about what the administration is doing, or the legal analysis supporting it. The announced “deferred action” provides temporary administrative relief from deportation for aliens who are the parents of citizens, or the parents of lawful permanent residents. “Deferred action” is an exercise of discretion in which officials may temporarily defer the removal of an alien. The grant of deferred action in this case will remain in place for three years, is subject to renewal, and can be terminated at any time at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security. As Eric Posner, who served in the Office of Legal Counsel under the first President Bush, notes, the president “is just doing what countless Congresses have wanted him to do”—setting priorities for deportation enforcement.
So if you think O is acting illegally, you must be some sort of legal rube. Got it.
This is probably the surest way to guarantee that conservatives (such as yours truly) who are in principle open to immigration reform cannot win the internecine struggle within the GOP. And the dirty truth is that suits Obama’s goals, just fine. He has no interest in a muddying of this issue. No, the liberal cause benefits from their being a stark distinction between the pro-immigrant forces on the left, and the philistine nativists on the right.
This makes sense. If the worst conservatives & libertarians can do is whine that O is not really being a uniter, that's not much.
FOR gay rights activists, it's a dilemma. Does it help or hinder their cause if science shows that homosexuality is partly or largely biologically determined, rather than a lifestyle choice?
On the one hand, if sexual orientation is something people are born with, and cannot change even if they want to – akin to skin colour or handedness – this should overturn the notion that people choose to be gay and could equally well choose not to be. That knowledge would help rebut those who suggest that gayness is the result of a morally unacceptable decision, or a psychological disorder. It might also help people who struggle to understand or declare their own homosexuality.
On the other, some could try to redefine homosexuality as a biological abnormality. There is no way to change people's sexuality, but if key genes are found, it might be possible to detect homosexuality before birth, or to "cure" people by altering those genes. Even the threat of this could be used to persecute: consider the ugly histories of prenatal sex selection and of coerced and ineffectual "therapies" for homosexuals. It is no wonder that some activists see in such research the "seeds of genocide".
This via http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/ It seems obvious to me that male homosexuality is genetic in most cases. Female homosexuality -- well, who knows.
Matthews: "There Is Something Weird Happening" Even in "The Educated Crowd" | Video | RealClearPolitics
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC: There's so much going on in this. The Denver Post endorsing Cory Gardner, and the Des Moines Register endorsing Ernst. There is something weird going on, even among the educated crowd, that surprised me. I haven't figured it out yet.
Matthews may the worst kind of Democrat, but he's right about this.
For as many as a quarter of normal-weight Americans, the opposite is true. While they may have a "healthy" BMI and look skinny on the outside, on the inside, they're a mess. Dr. Neil Ruderman first recognized these individuals 33 years ago, labeling them "metabolically-obese, normal-weight." Today, they're more casually described as "skinny-fat." Skinny-fat people generally have all the hallmark health problems associated with obesity -- high blood pressure, increased levels of LDL cholesterol, insulin resistance -- without overtly looking the part.
I'm just fat-fat, which is better, thank you very much.
Reports are rampant that President Obama will sign an executive order as soon as this week that will allow up to 5 million undocumented immigrants to avoid deportation. Signing such an order would have explosive political consequences — it would not only reshape the near-term fights in Congress but also have a potentially profound effect on the two parties’ national coalitions heading into the 2016 election and beyond.
I don't see how this serves Dem's long term advantage. If it does reshape the electorate, it could be a brilliant move, I suppose.
Incredible heroism: Maine logger plunges into icy water, cuts infant loose from submerged car - The Washington Post
Moody helped the woman out of the car and plunged into the icy water to free the baby. When he reached the 3-month-old infant, her body was limp. She wasn’t breathing. He told the AP he couldn’t feel his frozen hands as he sawed at the car-seat straps with a knife. The 44-year-old logger “kept telling myself, ‘Don’t drop the knife.’”
I should carry a knife. They can come in handy.
The human head weighs about a dozen pounds. But as the neck bends forward and down, the weight on the cervical spine begins to increase. At a 15-degree angle, this weight is about 27 pounds, at 30 degrees it’s 40 pounds, at 45 degrees it’s 49 pounds, and at 60 degrees it’s 60 pounds.
That’s the burden that comes with staring at a smartphone — the way millions do for hours every day, according to research published by Kenneth Hansraj in the National Library of Medicine. The study will appear next month in Surgical Technology International. Over time, researchers say, this poor posture, sometimes called “text neck,” can lead to early wear-and-tear on the spine, degeneration and even surgery.
It's also so unattractive, as my mother would have said.
Conservation groups sue to stop ‘predator derby’ killing of endangered gray wolf - The Washington Post
They call it the “predator derby.”
The prey includes coyotes, skunks, weasels, jackrabbits, raccoons and the endangered gray wolf. An Idaho-based hunter’s rights group is staging the three-day competitive hunt on public land in January for up to 500 hunters as young as 10.
The showdown will take place in Salmon, Idaho, a tiny town of 3,000 tucked in a Rocky Mountain valley.
If the wolf is really endangered, I don't think they'd be hunting it. Salmon is a typical Idaho mountain hamlet where hunting is sort of a religion.
Caudillo (Spanish pronunciation: [kawˈdiʎo]; Portuguese: caudilho [kɐwˈðiʎu]; Old Spanish: cabdillo, from Latin capitellum, diminutive of caput "head") usually describes a political-military leader at the head of an authoritarian power. The term translates into English as leader or chief, or more pejoratively as warlord, dictator or strongman. Caudillo was the term used to refer to the charismatic populist leaders among the people. Caudillos have had an immense impact upon the history of Latin America.
A word and a history with which Americans should become familiar. This never would have happened if O had been raised in Iowa, or Kansas, or New York, or Florida, or Texas, or Arkansas, or most other states, except Hawaii, which probably shouldn't even be a state. History is just so weird, so unpredictable. This shouldn't be happening (the immigration thing, and the ACA). 9/11 should not have happened either. On the other hand, neither should have the end of cold war, the way it did. Nor Ronald Reagan. We construct the narrative in retrospect. In prospect, it's just . . . weird.
"For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason,” NASA scientist Robert Jastrow once wrote, “the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries." Those seeking immortal “transcendence,” believing they can transfer their soul to a digital clone, might be in for a similar surprise. Let’s hope they don’t wreak too much havoc on the land of the living in their quest.
I'm with Musk on this one, except I don't think we're going to see AI in 5 or 10 years.
It is as remarkable as it is repulsive, the ingenuity with which the Obama administration uses the regulatory state’s intricacies to advance progressivism’s project of breaking nongovernmental institutions to government’s saddle. Eager to sacrifice low-income children to please teachers unions, the Justice Department wants to destroy Wisconsin’s school choice program. Feigning concern about access for disabled children, the department aims to handicap all disadvantaged children by denying their parents access to school choices of the sort affluent government lawyers enjoy.
As the liberal law professor Jonathan Turley put it last night, this is a “particularly dangerous moment” for the president to defy the will of Congress yet again, just 15 days after an election in which the American people registered their emphatic (anti-Obama) judgment. “What the president is suggesting is tearing at the very fabric of the Constitution,” according to Professor Turley. “We have a separation of powers that gives us balance. And that doesn’t protect the branches — it’s not there to protect the executive branch or legislative branch — it’s to protect liberty. It’s to prevent any branch from assuming so much control that they become a threat to liberty.”
Yes, it's that bad.
Calling itself “the administrative state,” a technocratic army of social scientists, lawyers and bureaucrats has kept the Democratic Party supplied for decades with the policy details behind its promises to the electorate. ObamaCare was going to be one more victory march into the end zone of federal entitlements with a playbook designed by Jon Gruber and the other grandchildren of the original administrative elites.
But no one’s popping champagne for this one. When 50 years from now historians search for evidence of when the Democratic Party’s decline began, they’ll fix on this famous blurting of the truth about ObamaCare by House Speaker Pelosi: “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it.”
DH is so good.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
WASHINGTON — President Obama will speak to the nation in a prime-time address on Thursday, asserting his authority to protect up to five million undocumented immigrants from deportation, the White House said, and setting in motion an immediate confrontation with Republicans about the limits of a president’s executive powers.
When the President embraces the tactics of a monarch, it becomes incumbent on Congress to wield the constitutional power it has to stop it.
Congress, representing the voice of the People, should use every tool available to prevent the President from subverting the rule of law.
This is a shot across the bow.
In the latest fallout from the sexual assault accusations involving the comedian Bill Cosby, NBC and Netflix have set aside projects with Mr. Cosby, and a lawyer for him issued a denial of a new claim from a woman who said he raped her decades ago.
An idea, now work with me: Old creepy guy, young good looking female DA, tough cop with kids, a special guest appearance on Law & Order SVU . . .
Many, many things are purportedly selling “like hot cakes” these days: modern art, the new Taylor Swift album, prescription drugs, Dodge’s (FCAU) Challenger Hellcat, Xboxes—even, according to CBS (CBS), plush Ebola toys. What’s not selling like hot cakes? Hot cakes.
Well I like them.
On Nov. 7, the Supreme Court said it would entertain the latest legal assault on President Obama’s health-reform program. Leading liberal analysts worry—reasonably—that the justices will cripple Obamacare. Unfortunately, these defenders of the program are making their case by preemptively accusing right-leaning members of the high court of bad faith and rank partisanship.
What Obama is talking about is indeed a break with the country's constitutional tradition. You don't need to take my word for it. "That's not how our democracy works. That's not how our Constitution is written." Obama used those words to explain why he wasn't going to go it alone on immigration back in 2011.
It's not the Constitution that has since changed.
I feel a bit like O has left the space I normally blog about. I'm used to all sorts of pervarication from politicians. But this does rather seem like a flier into new territory. What's he going to do next -- proclaim himself President for Life? Congress may be stupid, ill informed, whatever. The solution to that is not for the President to step forward and start imposing new and better laws of his own. They might even be better laws. But we are, for better or worse, and I think it's usually better, a republic. We have roughly representative assemblies, two in combination, in fact, that write bills and make laws.
Now what O is doing is not quite so bad as just making a new law completely on his own, but it comes pretty close. Still, I'm happy to see how our system sorts it out. For one thing, I don't have any choice. But for another, a president like O is bound to come up every so often in a system such as ours. Some way has to figured out how to deal with it short of violence. What he is doing is not as bad as FDR's attempt to pack the Supreme Court, but it is a step in that direction.
A mysterious Russian space object could be the return of the ‘satellite killer’ - The Washington Post
Meat cleavers. Ammunition. Box cutters. You’ll be surprised by what TSA finds. - The Washington Post
An anchor, weapons, bleach and toy weapons are some of the things you can’t pack in your luggage. With the heavy holiday travel season approaching, the Transportation Security Administration displayed some prohibited items confiscated at airport security checkpoints and checked luggage at JFK International Airport in New York.
LWJ was stopped by the TSA for attempting to carry an authentic 14 inch or so WW2 bayonette onto a plane, still remarkably sharp. She had forgotten it was in her bag. It had belonged to her dad. It happens.
But the Hendo Hoverboard is real. It uses a magnetic field to hover roughly an inch off of the ground from a conductive surface. Martha Mendoza of the Associated Press reported “four dinner plate-sized hover engines on the bottom of the board create a magnetic field that induces a secondary magnetic field in a conductive surface, in this case copper, although aluminum — even under concrete — works as well.” It’s the same technology that powers some trains in Asia.
Harvard University targeted by affirmative action opponents. For them, it’s the big one. - The Washington Post
Harvard University is the nation’s oldest, most prestigious educational institution. Now, it’s under fire for its affirmative action policies.
According to Crazy U, the book by college dad and extremely funny and insightful journalist Andrew Fergeson, two-thirds of Harvard undergraduate admittees are the product of some special treatment or other -- affirmative action, athletics, legacy admits and (I really like this one) "development admits" -- i.e. rich families who can make it worth Harvard's while. Two-thirds! I believe this from looking at Harvard's numbers. By the numbers, I had a couple of kids who were "Harvard material." So, actually, were a number of kids at my kids' Catholic high school. Yet only one had been admitted over perhaps ten years. You can say with respect to one or two kids that maybe they just had poor luck, but the consistency of their non-admittance indicates that the *real* numbers for kids without any special pull were in fact significantly higher than the numbers that Harvard discloses. That is, to get in just on strength of test scores and grades requires (at least) a 4.0 and double 800s SATs or the equivalent. And even then it's probably 1/2 or 1/3. So you may think your kids are Harvard material, and they may be in a sense, but they won't get in because you don't manage a hedge fund or big non-profit. This is how America works these days. Yale, Princeton, Stanford (especially), and Duke (especially) are just as bad, as are lots of schools. It doesn't have to be this way. In the UK, admission to Oxford and Cambridge is notoriously meritocratic. It is a very bad idea to even hint at a legacy advantage of some sort, for example. The idea of atheletic scholarships Brits rightly consider risible.
If you're not going to get any aid money anyway, and you probably aren't, and your kid will consider and would thrive at Oxbridge, or some other school in the UK, or maybe Canada, you should apply, or rather, ha ha, have your child apply. The applications are somewhat onerous but refreshingly free of bullsh*t. They don't care about extra-curricular activities. Mine wanted to stay in California and (and possibly /or) we couldn't afford or weren't going to borrow money to send them to the Ivy League or other fancy private school. So they're here at my small but undeniably cute university or slumming it at Cal, home of many Nobel prize winners and homeless people. American higher education is in a bad place.
November 18, 2014 President Obama's biggest problem over the next two years may not be coming from recalcitrant Republicans, but from members of his own party blanching at his activist agenda over the final two years of his presidency. While the midterm election results suggested widespread dissatisfaction with the president's policies, Obama nonetheless is planning to press forward on several polarizing decisions in his final two years. It could help advance his legacy, but come at the expense of the Democratic Party's long-term health.
November 18, 2014 Mary Landrieu begged her fellow Democrats to back legislation approving the Keystone XL pipeline, looking for a lifeline in her long-shot bid to keep her Senate seat. But on Tuesday night, she fell one vote short.
When bad things happen to hypocritical people.
You don’t believe me? A recent article in the Times cites surveys carried out by the Rand Corporation, the Commonwealth Fund, and Gallup, all of which indicated that the percentage of working-age Americans without health coverage has fallen by about a quarter, from somewhere around twenty per cent to somewhere around fifteen per cent. And, on Friday, Gallup published the results of a new survey, which asked people who bought policies through government exchanges what they thought of them. Seventy-one per cent of respondents rated the quality of their coverage as good or excellent. Nineteen per cent said it was fair. Nine per cent said it was poor.
So this is a defense of the ACA. I'm not sure how effective it is. It says the law is effective in the limited sense of reducing the number of uninsured working-age Americans and that they are happy with the coverage. Well, they should be happy, given how much this dog costs. That is what it's all about, at the end of the day.
President Obama is soon expected to take a step toward fixing our broken immigration system by issuing an executive order to halt deportations of undocumented immigrants whose children are U.S. citizens. Republicans, including Speaker of the House John Boehner and new Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have threatened reprisals against such an order. But one thing is clear: The president has the constitutional authority to decide to not proceed with deportations. It has always been within the president’s discretion to decide whether to have the Department of Justice enforce a particular law. As the Supreme Court declared in United States v. Nixon, “the Executive Branch has exclusive authority and absolute discretion to decide whether to prosecute a case.”
Sounds like Dean Chemerinsky got some kind of tip about what O is going to do. That's a shocker. One thing I don't understand. Suppose O says "we aren't going to prosecute certain illegal aliens. Prosecutorial discretion!" Why can't the Republican president in 2016 then announce, "we are going to prosecute and deport illegal aliens. Prosecutorial discretion!" Is the decision not to prosecute (and it's not exactly a prosecution, more simply an executive action) somehow a sort of precedent that has to be followed, assuming the Republicans show more respect for the law than O has? I don't know, but it seems doubtful to me. Of course, that doesn't solve the problem of a rush towards our borders as soon as O makes his announcement. I guess he's going to be living in Hawaii after he completes his term. No big worry about illegal aliens there.
Now, to their credit, they seem to finally understand how bad Gruber’s comments are for the pending Supreme Court case about the IRS rule. And his comments are damaging because they fly in the face of the government’s arguments about the absurdity of believing that the law meant to prevent subsidies from flowing through federal exchanges. But in one of his many videos, Gruber clearly states that what the government says is absurd is actually the precise outcome intended by those who designed the law: the federal government wanted all 50 states to establish exchanges. What better way to coerce them into doing that than by making federal subsidies contingent upon the establishment of a state change? What the Obama administration’s legal briefs say is absurd is exactly what the law’s architect said was the end goal.
This whole Gruber thing plus the King case is remarkable. Will the plaintiffs/appellees (I think they're the appellees) somehow brief the Gruber remarks? The Justices have anyway got to be aware of them. They read the papers, after all. At least Gruber didn't call the Justices stupid. That really would have done him in, and his favorite law.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
The attorney general's account may well be true. But the families of the missing students aren't buying it. They say they will not concede that their children are dead until they hear it from an independent source -- namely, a team of Argentine forensic anthropologists who will study whatever DNA may have survived the incineration.
The families' skepticism is understandable. On countless occasions over the past decade, Mexico's police, military, and justice system have proved themselves untrustworthy, unaccountable, and unprepared to handle the public-security catastrophe that has taken the lives of more than 90,000 Mexicans since the drug war began in 2006.
A clever application of physics... When I first read this headline – “Magnets in helmets might make football safer” – I groaned, and expected to read some pseudo-science claiming more miraculous magnetic effects like those sold by so many Dr. Oz-like charlatans. Instead I found something totally realistic: using the repelling force of “like poles” on powerful magnets to reduce the deceleration force when two football helmets smack into each other. Properly done, using magnets for this can be the equivalent of adding a thick layer of foam to the outside of a helmet. Very clever!
AMUL, Calif. - 10News went looking for the owner of a car who drivers say has been tailing them for miles and flashing blue and white headlights as they make their way down a two-lane road in Jamul.
It has been so frightening that many have called the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.
Yup, Jamul is weird.