Friday, September 10, 2004

22 Reasons

QuandO provides a nice summary of all the arguments for why the memos produced by CBS are forgeries.

Update: The Empire wimpers back.

Update: NRO's Kerry Spot on The Empire's wimper response [BAD MOVE, CBS]:

Nothing about kerning. Nothing about the paper size. Nothing about the stationary. Nothing about the widow or the son. Nothing about proportional spacing. Nothing about the difference in tone and writing style from other memos by this author. Nothing about the anachronistic language.

They changed the story from coming from his personal files, to admitting that CBS only had a photocopy to work from. The said some typewriters had superscript. Yes, but how common were they? Would they have one of those typewriters in an Air National Guard office?

They said the font Times Roman had been around for many years before the memo. Yes, but could you do it on a typewriter?

Rather said a lot about the criticism of the story is coming from “partisan political operatives.” Like all the forensic experts cited by ABC News and the Washington Post?

Update: Reason No. 23 -- The man named in the memo who supposedly pressured Killian to "sugar coat" Bush's military evaluations had retired from the National Guard a year before the memo was allegedly written. (link via Instapundit)

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Not Your Grandfather's Law School

Unlike elitest uber-liberal Ruth "Buzzy"Ginsberg, Justice Antonin Scalia gives a thumbs up to cyberspace law schools like Concord Law School.

From his chambers at the Supreme Court, Ginsburg's colleague Justice Antonin Scalia conducts an hourlong online colloquium with more than 400 Concord Law School students, answering their questions and expounding on the rule of law. From chilly disdain to the warm embrace of the members of the nation's highest court: not a bad arc of change in five years. Its significance was not lost on Barry Currier, Concord's dean. "We've certainly come a long way," Currier said after the Scalia colloquium.

In many ways, the online law school has made huge strides. The year before Ginsburg was pooh-poohing it, Concord opened its virtual doors to 35 students and six faculty members. The Concord Law School Scalia "visited" now boasts roughly 1,700 students. More than 70 faculty members -- including Harvard Law School's Arthur Miller on civil procedure -- teach through a variety of methods. Mass lectures are taped and video-streamed; real-time online classroom discussions are conducted through a combination of Real Player audio and a form of instant messaging that allows teachers to direct oral questions to individual students -- and demand immediate answers, Paper Chase-style, except that the students type the replies in for all to see.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Strike Three

A third federal district court (this time in Lincoln, Nebraska) rules that the federal ban on infanticide is unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Richard Kopf's decision followed two similar rulings in New York and San Francisco. Those rulings are expected to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"The decision by the court in Nebraska is disappointing but not surprising," said Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice, which specializes in constitutional law and is supporting the Justice Department in defending the ban in court.

"In the opinion, the court refused to consider the expert testimony of well recognized and highly respected medical experts simply because they had not performed abortions. This conclusion is not only legally flawed but shows the hostility the court exhibits to medical experts who have respect for human life," Sekulow said.

"No one expected the constitutionality of the ban on partial-birth abortion to be decided at the federal district court level. We are hopeful that the appeals process will result in overturning the decisions of the lower courts and conclude that the law designed to end the horrific procedure known as partial-birth abortion survives these constitutional challenges," he added.

Sekulow said the cases are expected to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court where both sides are in for a "lengthy and critical legal battle."
Out of Bounds!

Recently, Republican US Senate candidate Alan Keyes stated that Christ would not vote for his Democrat opponent, Barack Obama, because Mr. Obama supports the right of a woman to kill her unborn child. While certainly a controversial and politically incorrect statement, it is entirely logical, unless one is of the strange opinion that Christ did or does not regard unborn children as human beings.

Although it is unsurprising that the secular liberal media would be in an uproar over what Keyes said, the same can't really be said for certain self-identified pro-life Catholic political writers and commentators. One such writer/commentator is Rod Dreher from The Corner, who today wrote:

The news from Illinois just gets more and more depressing, doesn't it Kathryn? I'm beginning to think Alan Keyes (R-Saturn) is a Democratic plant. Depressingly enough, I've been involved in some heated debates with fellow pro-life Catholic conservatives regarding the Keyes candidacy. Some of them consider it treason to criticize Keyes, because he's pro-life. Such tunnel vision! If Nicolae Ceaucescu, the communist dictator who banned abortion in Romania, came back to life and declared for US Senate, you'd have these lemmings cheering him on because HEY, he's pro-life!

A little harsh and uncharitable if you ask me.
Profile: Smut Lawyers, LLC

How do legal beagle defenders of porn live with themselves, you might ask? By consistently deluding themselves into thinking that graphic videos and still pictures of people perversely bonking one another is constitutionally protected speech. Of course, they draw the line at defending child porn. Why? Because they don't want to have a 'bad' reputation.

Southern California's San Fernando Valley is the epicenter of the adult entertainment industry. The majority of XXX videos on the market have their roots in this strip of dingy suburbs northeast of downtown Los Angeles. But when the Valley's porn purveyors need a lawyer -- and they always need a lawyer -- many head over the Sepulveda Pass to the upscale enclave of Westwood, where the law offices of Weston, Garrou & DeWitt rest high in an innocuous white office tower.

There, surrounded by sports memorabilia, generations of family photos, and a panoramic view of the West L.A. hills, attorney Clyde DeWitt has carved out a reputation as one of the pre-eminent specialists in adult entertainment law. The five-partner practice is one of the only firms in the U.S. to focus on this unusual area, which encompasses issues from free speech to contracts to copyrights.

"It's a lot of fun," says DeWitt, a stocky 55-year-old with a rumbling baritone voice. "First Amendment is the centerpiece of what we do, because the overwhelming majority of our clients' problems are the government trying to regulate them in one way or another."
Running Amuck

A Washington State judge effectively rules that homosexuality is the equivalent of race and ethnicity, thus finally enabling some Caucasion males the ability to claim minority status. Twisted.

Thurston County Superior Court Judge Richard Hicks was the second trial judge in four weeks to strike down Washington's Defense of Marriage Act, overwhelmingly approved by the Legislature six years ago.

Hicks, in a 38-page ruling, wrote, "The clear intent of the Legislature to limit government approved contracts of marriage to opposite-sex couples is in direct conflict with the constitutional intent to not allow a privilege to one class of a community that is not allowed to the entire community."

But Hicks went further, finding that under Washington's Constitution, homosexuals are a so-called suspect class, groups with such immutable characteristics as race or sex that entitle them to equal protection of the law.

King County Superior Court Judge William Downing, in his Aug. 4 ruling, had declined to find homosexuals a protected class, based on federal law.

Hicks' finding surprised some legal observers and outraged gay-marriage opponents.

"The court is taking a significant step in deciding the issue this way," said Peter Nicolas, a University of Washington law professor who teaches a course in sexual-orientation law. "A lot of decisions, including some from the U.S. Supreme Court, have said just the opposite."

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

The Intolerance of the "Tolerant" Left

To be a conservative Republican in San Francisco is almost like being a Ronald Reagan admirer in Cuba. I think the only thing that prevents some of these Brownshirt leftists from harrassing me is the fact that I'm of Asian descent (sometimes, playing the race card can be a good thing). (Link via Mark Shea)

The Bay Area prides itself on its openness and acceptance, but many local Republicans said they have been met with intense hostility for their political beliefs. They said they've endured everything from rude remarks to threats and physical violence.

Some said the McCarthy-era paranoia about Communists aptly describes how they often feel.
"There's a lot of teachers out there that are closet Republicans because they are so afraid if they say anything in their workplace, they will be retaliated against," said Karen King, the chair of the County's Republican Party. "That's the ugliness that I would like to get rid of. At the end of the day, I'd like to think the opposition believes in free speech as well."

Jennifer Kerns, a spokeswoman for Republican Assembly candidate Steve Poizner's campaign, said trying to register voters as Republicans in San Mateo County can be a depressing -- or even dangerous -- activity.

"One person had hot coffee thrown on him. Others have had registration forms torn up or kicked off tables. They've also been called racial slurs," Kerns said of voter-registration workers.
Much Like His Native Fresno

Republican US Senate candidate Bill Jones seems to be an afterthought for most folks in California. Darned shame too, 'cause even though I fault Jones for switching his endorsement from Bush to McCain back in 2000, and for midwiving California's short lived and unconstitutional 'open primary' system, I really really can't stand Baghdad Barbara Boxer.

Support from Bush — which seems tepid at best — won't do Jones much good in a state where only two of five likely voters say they back the president. And though a public embrace from Schwarzenegger, whose job-approval rating stands above 60%, might help, the freshman governor so far has kept Jones at arm's length.

This is Jones' quandary. Despite campaign swings by such high-profile Republicans as Vice President Dick Cheney, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and Sen. John McCain, the Republican Party has not given Jones the kind of support it has given candidates in other states, a disengagement that has left the former Fresno-area rancher mired in a political bog of low name recognition, low fundraising and low voter interest.


Only half of likely Republican voters were satisfied with Jones as their candidate, though 77% said they would vote for him, according to an August poll by the Public Policy Institute of California. Nearly three-fourths of Democrats were satisfied Boxer was their candidate, and 87% said they'd vote for her.
Alice Cooper Was Right

Rock stars are morons. (via K-Lo at The Corner)
Get Thee To The Confessionals!

Mischievous Catholic boarding school students get caught pulling a big prank that the German media fell hook, line and sinker for.

Reports that a Catholic boarding school had objected to new sweet wrappers for portraying "fruits in sexual positions" turned out to be based on a prank by schoolboys, shame-faced officials said.

Germany's tabloid press had trumpeted the allegations of "sugar candies depicted as having sex with lemons" on the wrappers of new Maoam candies by the Bonn-based Haribo confection company.

The source of the complaints was a letter from St Blasien Jesuit College near Bonn, stating that wrappers in bright yellow, red and green colours show lemons, limes, strawberries, cherries and oranges playfully engaging in sex.

"We are shocked at the shameless presentation of sexual practices on the wrapping," wrote the college in a letter complaining about the new packaging of Moaom fruit chews.

But the letter turned out to have been a hoax perpetrated by pupils at the school who admitted writing it and posting it on the Internet "as a joke".