Archive for the Constitution Category

Turning Left.  The Other Right. (August 12, 2019)

Posted in Affirmative Action, Constitution, Drugs, Freedom / Liberty, Gay Politics, Gender, Sanders, Tea Party, Trumpi on August 12, 2019 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “They say the country’s growing tolerance for LGBT rights and increasing decriminalization of marijuana are signals that the country is turning to the left.”

J          “Or turning to the right.  The other left.  Tolerating those who reveal LGBT inclinations is fundamentally a conservative idea to respect individual choice even if the individual does not make the choice.  Decriminalizing marijuana respects the fundamental liberty interest of every citizen to be free of government direction and tyranny.”

K          “So the country is turning to the other left.”

J          “Right.  The other left is the right.  Many folks find it right to turn left to turn right.”

. . .

[See the e-commentary at “The Big Decision (December 13, 2010)”, “Less Government Regulation Series:  Love and Marriage (May 19, 2008)”, “Less Government Regulation Series:  Drugs (March 2, 2009)”, “A Second Party:  Trump or Sanders? (March 14, 2016)”, “Tea Party And Innocence Project Form ‘Liberty Alliance’ (September 9, 2013)”, “Constitutional Remedies With An Expiration Date? Affirmative Action and Marriage Neutrality. Again. (December 10, 2012)” and “On Freedom and Liberty (May 24, 2010)”.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Imagine using turn signals

So politics is a circle not a line or . . . a trapezoid with two parallel bases not a continuum?

Forfeiting Forfeiture (March 4, 2019)

Posted in Constitution, Drugs, Eighth Amendment, Forfeiture, Fourteenth Amendment, Kleptocracy, Supreme Court on March 4, 2019 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “In one case, the police had absolutely no interest in arresting the criminal activity and instead focused all their efforts on stealing an apartment building from a widow on the grounds that she should have known that there was drug activity in an apartment.  The widow alerted the police because of concerns that there appeared to be drug activity in some apartment.  The police alleged that privacy concerns purportedly prevented them from sharing any information that would have allowed her to identify and evict the allegedly offending tenant.  The police pulled off the scam and used the forfeiture laws to steal and sell the apartment building for their own profit.  Unreal.”

J          “How about a memorandum of understanding among multiple police agencies providing that the first member of a department to touch the airplane carrying the drugs would get the airplane in the forfeiture action.  When the word went out over the radio to make the bust, each department dispatched its fastest sprinter to fly across the tarmac to make first contact with the aircraft.  Surreal.”

K          “When you dwell in a Kleptocracy, you should expect kleptocratic behavior at every level.  Real.”

. . .  

K          “The people really did win.”

J          “The government really did not lose.”

K          “The Constitution really did win.”

. . .

[See “Supreme Court Limits Police Power to Seize Private Property” in “The New York Times” by Adam Liptak and Shaila Dewan dated February 20, 2019.]   

[See the e-commentary at “Police Police (November 24, 2014)”.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Police Police  [But do not stick on your bumper!]        

Support your local police  [Aspirational!]

Happy International Women’s Day

Are “Prices” A Language? Are Antitrust Laws Grounded In The First Amendment? How Do We Forestall The “Frightful Five” And Other Monopolies? Oh, And Happy Halloween! (October 30, 2017)

Posted in Amazon, Apple, Constitution, Economics, Facebook, First Amendment, Google, Internet, Language, Microsoft, Monopoly, Price, Radio, Technology on October 30, 2017 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “Prices for goods and services are a language spoken with numbers (7) not letters (L).”

J          “I love language.  French is the language of love and the language of diplomacy.  Accounting is the language of business.  So Prices are the language of a free market economy?”

K          “Yes.  Russian is one of the languages of literature.”

J          “So is French.”

K          “And English.”

. . .

K          “Monopolies distort Prices which distorts speech.  By distorting Prices, the public is making inaccurate and incomplete decisions and paying more for goods and services while the corporations are not internalizing externalities.”

J          “Price may just be the real Esperanto.”

. . .   

J          “The current monopolies are in part the consequence of acts of commission and even more often acts of omission by the government.”

K          “The problem with my analysis is that the First Amendment is a restriction on government activity not a requirement for government action.”

J          “So the Constitution is unavailing.  We are stuck with Congress, the executive agencies and the courts to protect us.”

K          “They do not speak our language.”

. . .

[See the interview by Terry Gross with the tech columnist Farhad Manjoo with “The New York Times” who cautions that the “Frightful Five” (Amazon, Google/Alphabet, Apple, Microsoft and Facebook) are more powerful than the governments on the “Fresh Air” radio program titled “How 5 Tech Giants Have Become More Like Governments Than Companies” on October 26, 2017.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Spanish is the language a man uses to talk to his God;

French is the language a man uses to talk to his wife;

Italian is the language a man uses to talk to his mistress;

German is the language a man uses to talk to his mule.

And English is the language a man uses to fly a plane or to surf the web or to engage in international discourse.  You create it, you talk it.

And Price is the language a man and a woman use to value and exchange resources.

Second Annual Noble Prize In Jurisprudence (October 16, 2017)

Posted in Awards / Incentives, Civil Rights/Civil Liberties, Constitution, Courts, Judges, Judicial Arrogance, Judiciary, Justice, Law, Law School, Noble Prize in Jurisprudence on October 16, 2017 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “A prize dedicated to acknowledging and celebrating the work of someone who really knows something about jurisprudence and the impact of courts, judges, lawyers and police on the lives and livelihood of ordinary citizens.  Someone who lives the conviction that men and women should establish and respect some norms and standards that are promulgated clearly to all and enforced equally in favor of and against all.”

J          “The law schools are vacuous deserts of inbreeding and infighting that gestate little legal gamesters.  The bench is a magnet for wankers who played the legal game profitably and perpetuate the racket for the benefit of the judges and a few lawyers.  Is anyone qualified in America?  Is someone outside American eligible?  Give the nod to another underappreciated and overworked public defender who somehow manages to make a difference.”

K          “They were included within the group of individuals acknowledged and celebrated last year.  The recipient of the second annual Noble Prize In Jurisprudence . . . is John W. Whitehead and the Rutherford Institute for his and its dedication to the protection and defense of civil liberties and human rights.  He and the Institute are indeed public defenders of law and policy who have made and are making a difference.”

. . .

[See the e-commentary at “First Annual Noble Prize In Jurisprudence (October 17, 2016)” and “Award Deadlines (Livelines?) (July 25, 2016)”.]

Bumper sticker of the week:

I wasn’t using my civil liberties anyway

The Third Amendment: Finding A Safe Haven And A Refuge For The Elements (May 10, 2017)

Posted in Constitution, Fiat Currency, Gold, Gold Standard, Martial Law, Privacy, Republican Federal Judge Syndrome, Second Amendment, Silver, Silver Standard, Third Amendment, War on May 8, 2017 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “It was placed third ahead of the right to be free of unreasonable search and seizure, the right to a trial by jury and the right not to be subject to cruel and unusual punishment, among others.  Protecting against the threat was a greater concern and anxiety that these other concerns and anxieties.”

J          “And yet one hundred out of ninety-nine Americans cannot identify it.  Even at tony cocktail parties.  It is the Privacy Provision.”

. . .

K          “As I recall, it says:  ‘No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law’ or something like that.  Congress has not formally declared war for decades, yet the government is at war with most of the world all the time and will be at war with most of the world until the final collapse of the American Empire.”

J          “The Constitutional benchmark in time of war allows for regulation ‘prescribed by law’ that provides an open-ended ability to oppress the people.  The government can send in the police and contend that they are not even soldiers, even though the police are militarized and soldier-surrogates in the soft martial law that has been in place for the last dozen plus years.”

K          “And the Republican federal judges suffering from ‘Republican Federal Judge Syndrome’ will allow the government to do anything it wants to and call if deference.”

. . .

K          “Survey the literature.  No one even questions that the government will confiscate gold and likely silver when the stuff begins to compete with the fraudulent fiat currency foisted on the public by the government.”

J          “The government will not stop there.  The Empire will confiscate all the elements – Au, Ag and Fe and Pb.”

K          “The Second Amendment may provide some limited protection for guns and perhaps for ammo.  The Third Amendment needs to be expanded to protect gold and silver from government confiscation.”

J          “The right to keep and exchange precious metals shall not be abridged.”

. . .

J          “The Founding Fathers did not have to contend with a fraudulent fiat currency.”

K          “That is why I contend that the Third Amendment prohibition against quartering troops in one’s house should be expanded to include a prohibition against the government restricting the use of ‘Washington quarters’ of the citizen’s choosing in one’s house and in exchanges with other citizens so inclined.”

J          “Quarters, dimes and dollars are under assault and attack by the government.  They are the only means to maintain some privacy and freedom in exchanges.”

K          “The Third Amendment may offer the most promise for providing some constitutional protection for privacy and freedom broadly defined.”

. . .

K          “On the other head, the Third Amendment is undergirded by the fiction that the house is one’s castle and should not be invaded by the state.  Vesting the Third Amendment with what we deeply believe is important may be an inappropriate bypass of direct Congressional action.”

J          “Bypassing direct Congressional action does not seem inappropriate to me.  Congress will pass the law to confiscate precious metals and not pass any law to protect private possession of property such as possession of precious metals.”

. . .

K          “And talking about quarters, . . . that’s my two bits.”

J          “And that is my dos centavos.”

. . .

[See the essay by Gordon S. Wood on “The Third Amendment” published by the National Constitution Center.] 

[See the e-commentary at “Preserve Cash; Preserve (Some) Privacy (May 4, 2015)”, “The Paradox Of The Republican Federal Judge: Republican Federal Judge Syndrome (September 23, 2013)” and Boycott Facebook? (August 2, 2010)” that suggests an extension of the Third Amendment to protect against invasions of privacy.]

Bumper sticker of the week:

“No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.”

Dividing The Divided Supreme Court In A Divided Country (October 3, 2016)

Posted in Constitution, Elections, First Monday In October, Immanentizing The Eschaton, Presidency, Supreme Court on October 3, 2016 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “Divide the Court.  The Court is already quasi-formally divided, yet they meet in joint session.  The country is already divided.  Formally divide the Court in two.”

J          “So we simply acknowledge the divide in the country and divide the country and the Court in twain.  That is where we are heading.  That is our destiny.” 

K          “There is talk of dividing the Ninth Circuit which, if it is done, is always along geographic lines.  The Supreme Court is divided along easily demarcated ideological lines and adequately defined geographic lines.  The four Red Catholic Republican Institutionalist Boys should propound the law in the Red States.  The four Blue ‘Jewish’ Democratic Individualist ‘Girls’ should propound the law in the Blue States.”

J          “One Great Decision.  Two utopias.  I like it.”

K          “What is truly promising is that neither side would be forced to undertake and endure a great constitutional convention; that prospect is terrifying.  Each team could have a mimeographed copy of the same Constitution.  And then each team could continue to reach opposite results.”

. . .

J          “That would allow everyone in the two Americas to immanentize the Eschaton everywhere at the same time.”

K          “Not exactly.  One team would allow everyone in Blue America to immanentize the Eschaton and the other team would not allow anyone in Red America to immanentize the Eschaton.”

J          “Exactly.  Toward a more perfect division.”

. . .

[See the e-commentary for the last half dozen years in the Category “First Monday In October”, “Boycott Red America (January 3, 2005)”, “Immanentize The Eschaton: Move To Sunny Somalia (December 20, 2010)” and “Immanentize The Eschaton.  Say What? (August 22, 2016).”]

Bumper stickers of the week:

The Election is all about the Court

We are selecting one of the two Courts not one of the two court jesters

With liberty and justice for some

natural born Citizen; Natural Born Killers (March 7, 2016)

Posted in Constitution, Democrats, Elections, Judges, Judicial Arrogance, Judiciary, Originalism, Presidency, Republicans, Supreme Court on March 7, 2016 by e-commentary.org

. . .

K          “An individual who is not a ‘natural born Citizen’ such as John McCain and Ted Cruz is not eligible to be President or Vice President of the United States.  The ‘Originalist’ interpretation of the phrase ‘natural born Citizen’ in the U.S. Constitution is clear and unassailable.”

J          “To honor Scalia’s passing and continue its practice of intervening in elections, the Supreme Court should invoke its inherent jurisdiction and enter an injunction enjoining Ted Cruz from running.  For the good of the cause.  And the Constitution.”

K          “Indeed.  Certainement.  Post haste.  He professes to be an honorable man.  And also one of the original ‘Originalists’.  He would surely concur.”

. . .

J          “Many clear thinking individuals now maintain that those born in the United States and those born elsewhere who meet legal requirements meet the contemporary understanding of citizenship at birth.” 

K          “That is the perspective of the see-me, feel-me, touch-me; I’m-okay, you’re-okay; peace, love and Woodstock; tune-in, turn-on, tune-out; get-down, get-funky; if-it-feels-good, do-it school of jurisprudence.”

J          “Yup.”

K          “Kinda makes sense.”

J          “Does.”

. . .

K          “The boys debating with the one who is not a ‘natural born Citizen’ are behaving like ‘Natural Born Killers’.”

J          “So in the one who is not a ‘natural born Citizen’.”    

. . .

[See the discussion at http://www.vox.com/2016/2/18/11058038/ted-cruz-court and https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/ted-cruz-is-not-eligible-to-be-president/2016/01/12/1484a7d0-b7af-11e5-99f3-184bc379b12d_story.html?tid=pm_opinions_pop_b.]

[See the discussion at http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/02/29/antonin-scalia-looking-backward.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

Fukushima Daiichi