Thursday, February 27, 2014
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.”
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.
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.
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.
Huh. The world she is amazing.
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.
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.
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."
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.
I thought the IRS scandal was really, really bad. But upon a closer look, it turns out to be really, really, really bad.
There was a time not too long ago when Republicans decried “activist judges.” Now they’re lamenting that judges are not being activist enough.
Milbank isn't a lawyer. He should read a book or something so he can comment on this issue intelligently.
Yet another of their gods has let the net-neutrality faithful down.
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!