The Right Coast

Editor: Thomas A. Smith
University of San Diego
School of Law

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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Religious Liberty After Arizona

But then again: “We are a Puritanical nation, which doesn’t mean we hate sex (the Puritans loved sex). It means that we are profoundly anti-Catholic and prone to stamping out dissenters. We used to use social consensus and economic pressure where we didn’t use convictions to accomplish this. Now we use the Supreme Court.”

via thefederalist.com

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Bizarre, Slanted Coverage of Arizona’s SB 1062

Yesterday, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed a bill that would have made clear that the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) applied not just as a defense to a lawsuit brought by a government entity, but also as a defense to lawsuits brought by a private party under a state statute, or using a cause of action created by state law. Under RFRA, no government action (including a damage award in a lawsuit) can “substantially burden” religious freedom unless it is “the least restrictive means” to further a “compelling interest.” The bill hardly seems like a radical change, since damage awards in private lawsuits already constitute “state action” for purposes of the First Amendment, under the Supreme Court’s decisions in Snyder v. Phelps and New York Times v. Sullivan. The bill just applies the same principle to RFRA, and, indeed, the bill’s enactment might merely have given the state’s RFRA the same meaning that other jurisdictions’ RFRA’s already have by judicial construction. The bill did not even mention sexual orientation, did not single out gays, and probably would have had its greatest effect in other areas.

via www.openmarket.org

Really.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

New evidence that plants get their energy using quantum entanglement

Biophysicists theorize that plants tap into the eerie world of quantum entanglement during photosynthesis. But the evidence to date has been purely circumstantial. Now, scientists have discovered a feature of plants that cannot be explained by classical physics alone — but which quantum mechanics answers quite nicely.

via io9.com

Darn.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Physicists find a new 'state of matter' in the eyes of chickens

An unusual arrangement of particles has been discovered in the cells of chicken eyes. It's the first time scientists have seen such a system in a biological system — one that allows materials to behave like both a crystal and a liquid.

via io9.com

Huh. The world she is amazing.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Masochism TV | National Review Online

Neither is attractive; both are compelling. I won’t miss an episode of either, but I know what I’ll feel when they’re done. Relief.

via www.nationalreview.com

I don't watch Walking Dead. I hope that's not really what happens at the end of Season 2 of Cards. Lileks should have warned me.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Cruz won't promise to stay out of primaries | TheHill

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Thursday didn't rule out involvement in GOP primaries this year against incumbent Republican senators.

Cruz said he had made no "ironclad promise" to stay out of the primaries.

"What I have said is that I'm likely going to stay out of incumbent Republican primaries," he said. "I haven't put that in concrete." 

via thehill.com

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

IRS regs trample Tea Party's free speech, but unions get to keep their carve-out

Even those in the Obama Administration and their supporters should be able to grasp the concept that freedom of speech cannot be granted to a few, while being denied to many. This is akin to feeding alligators hoping you’ll be eaten last.

Eventually, should this regulation go into effect, the inevitable result is that it will be applied to every covered organization whether they were Obama supporters or not. That’s the very essence of equal application of the law, and it would signal the end of American democratic history of dissent.

via netrightdaily.com

I thought the IRS scandal was really, really bad. But upon a closer look, it turns out to be really, really, really bad.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Dana Milbank: Republicans flip-flop on ‘judicial activism’ - The Washington Post

There was a time not too long ago when Republicans decried “activist judges.” Now they’re lamenting that judges are not being activist enough.

via www.washingtonpost.com

Milbank isn't a lawyer. He should read a book or something so he can comment on this issue intelligently.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Holman Jenkins: How the Internet Was Meant to Be - WSJ.com

Yet another of their gods has let the net-neutrality faithful down.

via online.wsj.com

I don't really care as long as I get House of Cards cheap and fast. Now Netflix needs to do a deal with Cox and they all need a deal with Amazon. Come on guys! I want my MTV!

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Charles Krauthammer: The myth of ‘settled science’ - The Washington Post

Ah, settled science in action.

via www.washingtonpost.com

This is a week old, but I reprint it as it caused a fuss. Krauthammer is of the same view as I am about climate change.

February 27, 2014 | Permalink | Comments (0)