Thursday, June 30, 2005

Allergy Season!

Yikes... I have been knocked out the past few days with the worst allergy symptoms I have ever experienced. Every year around the Fourth of July, I am afflicted with massive allergies. And every year, I promise to go to an allergist. One of these days...

On another note, the WhizKids have not posted in a while for a couple of reasons. First, the WhizKids Clan has been relocated by the powers that be to the New York City area, prompting a move from their wonderful abode in Atlanta, GA. Moves are always tough (especially when leaving a fantastic city such as Alpharetta, GA) so lets hope the Connecticut area is as hospitable to the WhizKids Clan as the South proved to be.

A second reason for the WhizKids recent silence was some health concerns caused by a gall stone that sidelined Mr. WhizKids for the past week (just as the movers were about to appear for the move north of the Mason-Dixon line). That invidious little stone seems to have been taken care of by the fine medical staff at the North Fullerton Regional Hospital but Mr. WhizKids still isn't 100% yet.

My we are bloggers have to improve our health!

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Iran's president-elect faces task of healing rifts - Yahoo! News

Iran's president-elect faces task of healing rifts - Yahoo! News

Surely the MSM has been asleep at the wheel... I have yet to read that Jimmy Carter has weighed in with his blessings on the integrity of the Iranian elections. Perhaps Mr. Carter is too busy analyzing the voting results of the 2004 U.S. election?

That's Rich

You have to admit they can be very funny at times....
Leading Senate Democrats revealed this week that they had sent President Bush a letter urging him to consult with them before selecting a new Supreme Court Justice in the event a vacancy appears during President Bush's final term in office.
Sen. Kennedy then offered this amusing nugget:
It doesn't take much to get our
consent. All the president has to do is seek out his preferred non-ideological
choices, ask us about them, and listen to our answers.
I get it... all President Bush has to do is to seek out a non-Republican judicial appointment, obtain the prior approval of the Senate Democrats, and ultimately bow to the wishes of the Democratic leadership. Et voila... we have a smooth judicial selection process!!! Who says Washington has to be difficult?!?
Too bad of course for the majority of Americans who cast their votes for President Bush. For that matter, too bad for the majority of Americans who cast their votes to confer a Republican majority in both the U.S. House and Senate. Obviously those voters are way out of the political mainstream (which of course is properly defined by the Democrats... who for some reason lost the presidency and saw their minority positions in both Houses even further eroded during the last election).

Thursday, June 23, 2005

This Land Was Your Land, This Land Is My Land

Great... just great.

The Rehnquist Supreme Court (through no fault of Justice Rehnquist I must add) has once again proven itself to be more disastrous than even the Warren Court.

Following its tradition of discovering rights which do not exist (think abortion and sodomy) and eviscerating rights spelled out in the Constitution's text (think regulation of political speech and gun control), the Rehnquist Court has now emptied the 5th Amendment's restrictions on public takings of private property of all meaning.

The 5th Amendment is remarkably clear:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

In Kelo et al v. City of New London, SCOTUS was faced with a municipality which sought to condemn certain land owned by private homeowners so that the property could be handed over to private business developers who promised the usual panacea benefits for the City... job growth, increased tax collections, etc.

Justice Stevens, speaking for a 5-4 majority, asserted that the condemnation was appropriate because the City of New London believes the taking of the private property "will provide appreciable benefits to the community, including , but by no means limited to, new jobs and increased tax revenue."

The concept of private property (and that's all it is after today's ruling... just a concept) was blown to smithereens by our Supreme Court. If property can be taken at the whim of any municipality sensing more tax revenues in the air from a different use of the property, the public use restriction on the taking of property property now has about as much teeth as the limitations on the reach of the Commerce Clause.

I can only hope that Justice Kennedy's summer home is located in an area that is ideal for a strip mall...