1 - 10 Next
arpiem, I forgot that you were a Constitutional scholar that can just pronounce what is contained in the Constitution and what isn't. And your syllogism about my mother's hypothetical abortion is of no help. Everything is a cause of everything that comes after it, whether direct or indirect. Had my grandmother died in a car accident at age 15, I would not be here. Had my life really begun already in 1947? Seem unlikely. There's this little thing called attenuation in the law. And it matters tremendously.
rightmostofthetime, No, actually, states are prohibited from restricting or criminalizing abortions in the first two trimesters. That's sort of the thrust of the Roe v. Wade decision. Let me put the above more simply. A common conservative criticism of Roe v. Wade is the right of privacy that the court somehow "magically" locates in what they court calls the "penumbra" of the Bill of Rights. Meaning, taken together, the Bill of Rights implicitly protects a right of privacy from government intrusion that includes various private activities. The right of privacy was Supreme Court precedent before Roe v. Wade, and was introduced in Connecticut v. Griswold. That case dealt with a married couple challenging a law that obstructed their ability to obtain contraceptives. The court ruled that the government had overstepped its bounds by trying to regulate behavior between spouses of a purely private nature. The court found a right of privacy supported by the 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination and the 9th Amendment. Later courts shored up the foundation of a right to privacy by grounding it in the due process clause of the 14th Amendment as well. Given that these legal principles protect parents' right to send their children to non-government schools, married-couples' legal right to live their private lives without government intrusion, and patients' rights to medical treatment of their choice, I'm not very clear on the conservative objection. Would conservatives really deny that a Constitutional right to privacy exists? Or would they find a right to privacy somewhere else in the Constitution that somehow draws a different line, with abortion on the other side?
The suspicion of liberal values here is conspiracy-level ridiculous. Like there is some shadow liberal convention every year where everyone meets and decides what parts of a secret, fascist agenda is palpable enough to be advanced to the citizenry. The majority of liberals are just like the majority of conservatives: well-meaning. While good intentions can't unilaterally solve problems, demonizing the ideological opposition has a way of stagnating useful solutions. Simply pointing out areas of disagreement over appropriate standards to adopt based on the language of applicable laws, ones where reasonable and intelligent people may differ, does nothing to show the overall inclination for or against a particular law as written. More simply put, I don't think conservatives are evil or stupid. I think many of the policies for which they advocate are wrong-headed. That's a policy disagreement, not a personal one.
So, obviously you disagree with a right to privacy contained in the penumbras of the Bill of Rights, otherwise you wouldn't have mentioned it. I'm curious, would you honestly argue that parents aren't protected from government intrusion by a right of privacy in a manner that enables them to choose how they raise their kids (e.g. sending their kids to religious schools rather than secular government schools), or would you locate the right of privacy somewhere else in the Constitution that somehow prohibits abortion, while simultaneously protecting conservative values?
In response to:

The Coming Christian Revolt

wtmoore1 Wrote: Jul 21, 2014 4:11 PM
The Christian right confuses "persecution" with no longer being able to impose their agenda on everyone all the time.
In response to:

The Coming Christian Revolt

wtmoore1 Wrote: Jul 21, 2014 4:08 PM
Illbay, It doesn't surprise me that you believe this, given the misinformation out there, but it's blatantly untrue. There are protected categories contained in federal non-discrimination law that prohibit employers from denying employment on the basis of race, national origin, religion, gender, age, and disability, as well as some state laws that prohibit restricting employment on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. In all 50 states it is patently unlawful to deny employment to a Christian because they are a Christian, and this covers denying employment to those with Christian beliefs on the basis of their beliefs. Atheists are equally protected. The ability to choose non-religion over religion is a negative right contained in the free exercise clause of the 1st Amendment--much like the freedom of speech bestowed by the same implicitly contains a negative right that prohibits others from forcing you to speak. As the Supreme Court LOVES to quote in every case implicating the 1st Amendment, your absolute right to swing your fist ends precisely where the next person's nose begins.
In response to:

The Coming Christian Revolt

wtmoore1 Wrote: Jul 21, 2014 3:07 PM
This column has to be a joke. In the same breath that Matt uses to decry a "war on Christianity," he attempts to affirm his right to refuse employment to those with views he finds antagonistic to his religious values. So, I can refuse to hire Christians on the basis of their religion because I don't agree with their beliefs, right? Wrong.
The guy has been here since he was a kid, and is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist for the Washington Post. If there was a sensible way for him to attain citizenship, he would have pursued it. He has no control over his situation as a child, and now as an adult, the avenue conservatives expect him have take is to return to a country he doesn't know anymore or have ties to and wait a decade or more to return to a place that is already his home? He didn't break our immigration system twenty years ago, and he didn't take advantage of any laws when brought to our country as a child.
Cappmann, Put aside the "uproar" that you claim is induced by "lying," and actually read the case. The majority opinion is about 50 pages. It's not that long. Even Congress shouldn't complain about having to read something this short. The ruling did not provide an answer to the problem of determining a corporation's religion--including failing to provide a roadmap for how to deal with the differing religions, or differing doctrinal positions, of owners or shareholders. Your knee-jerk response (that the ruling doesn't apply) is belied by the language of the decision. The majority assumes that Hobby Lobby is a "Christian" organization without providing a procedure for how that was determined. Most telling is your response to the omission of "employees" as if they are not part of the case at all. In determining the "religion" of a corporation, we leave out rank-and-file employees? One of the largest stakeholders in the corporation by raw numbers? That seems ill-informed at best, and is certainly not the answer provided by the court. The court actually punts on an answer in this portion. As to the denial of birth control, and the argument about "abortion-inducing" drugs, while religious objectors might find certain birth control methods to be "abortion-inducing," there are some basic health and safety requirements that we accept for our society, religious objections notwithstanding. We wouldn't allow a business to pay less than minimum wage because they had a religious objection to the manner in which their employees spend their discretionary income, even if we could make the government pay the difference. We wouldn't accept that because we have rules of general applicability that we impose on everyone in order to ensure basic standards of decency and quality of life in our society, and discrete religious objections shouldn't except you from the rule. Religious convictions at large should inform or decision-making process as to what generally applicable rules we should apply, but once the calculus is finished, individual exceptions are not something our society has ever really been prepared to recognize. Those of us who aren't the conservative bloc of the Sup Ct, at least. We live in a plural society. One in which an employee is not forced to choose between working at a job that does not provide the basement-level benefits required by all employers because of a particular employer's religious convictions and quitting that job.
This is an interesting debate because the only reason it is on anyone's radar at all is because both party leaders saw it as a chance to play election-year politics. Attempting to remove politics from procedure for just a second, the general principle behind Ex-Im is to remove the financing bottleneck for foreign purchasers overseas so that high-priced American goods can flow more easily. Simply put, if you're starting an airline in Nigeria, it's almost impossible to find loans at a competitive enough rate in your own country to be able to purchase equipment. So Ex-Im acts as a low-interest lender to facilitate the sale. In theory, this makes sense for American productivity--we want our products to be sold overseas, and if the only thing stopping them is exorbitant loan prices, and we also have the financial wherewithal to offer loans on better terms, it seems like a good idea to offer the loans. Sort of like a government-backed purchase money security option. Obviously, poorly evaluated loans lead to products being purchased that would have been purchased anyway, but simply on more favorable terms with government-backed loans, or poor repayment history, but those are fixable problems. You don't demand that your investment bank shut down because they bet wrong on a leveraged position, you demand that they reform their practices and get it right.
1 - 10 Next