Morning Links

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012
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25 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  edmund dantes | 

    LOL… there have been just as many/worst presidents that have destroyed the constitution that weren’t lawyers.

    That is a classic conclusion first find evidence to support it argument. It’s lazy and makes me question the person’s reasoning skills.

  2. #2 |  C. S. P. Schofield | 

    • The longer I watch PETA’s antics the more I am convinced that they don’t really give a fat damn about the treatment of animals, they simply want to shout “Look at me! I’m morally superior to all you peasants!”

    • The Alabama case is instructive. I just wish I thought people were going to draw the right inferences. Federal immigration law would, if enforced, probably have much the same effects. It needs to be changed. Or enforced. One or the other. The Status Quo, where illegal immigrants are encouraged to enter the country by a history of lax enforcement, and then held hostage in the grey economy by their illegal status, is despicable.

  3. #3 |  Mattocracy | 

    I really hate it when I read stuff about immigration and people use “hate” to refer to the basis of bad legislation. I disagree a lot with the laws that Arizona and Alabama have passed recently, but it’s not about hate or racism. They’re pissed of about laws being broken.

    Granted, they’re bad laws that are unjust and that’s fine to argue. But I don’t believe it is accurate to call people pissed off about illegal immigration hate mongers or racists. It really takes away from the integrity of the argument to call the opposition racists, hate mongers, terrorist sympathizers, unamerican, etc.

    Some people do hate, some people probably hatet he idea of having Mexicans here regardless of their legality. It’s not fair to paint all illegal immigration opponents with that brush. My rant is done.

  4. #4 |  crazybob | 

    Why right wing extremist billionaires shouldn’t own newspapers.

    Fixed it for ya!

  5. #5 |  a_random_guy | 

    Asset forfeiture outrage

    Indeed. The guy rents an airplane to a well-known customer. Because that customer does something allegedly illegal, the plane is forfeit? Herzt, Avis and Co. would have the bucks to fight this. A one-man show doesn’t.

    Where’s the due process? That’s a rhetorical question…

  6. #6 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Why left wing extremist fluffers shouldn’t have Internet access.

    Fixed again.

  7. #7 |  Radley Balko | 

    Why right wing extremist billionaires shouldn’t own newspapers.

    Fixed it for ya!

    Because Gene Healy is known for his right-wing extremism.

  8. #8 |  Jay | 

    This American Life recently did an episode on Alabama’s immigration law:
    http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/456/reap-what-you-sow

    /Jay

  9. #9 |  Aresen | 

    On the PETA lawsuit:

    I could make a strong case that Orcas are more intelligent than PETA members.

  10. #10 |  C. S. P. Schofield | 

    Aresen,

    I (and probably you too) could make a strong case that there are things growing on damp bread that are smarter than PETA members. Moor useful, too.

  11. #11 |  Sinchy | 

    The constitutional arguments PETA are making might be ridiculous but I have to agree that keeping orcas and porpoises in captivity is pretty cruel. It’s no surprise that sometimes killer whales turn on their trainers. They are animals that usually have many thousands of miles of ocean to roam, are highly social creatures, and have intelligence that far exceeds other captive animals such as lions and zebras etc. We don’t even know how smart they are. The man who captured and trained Fipper is now a dolphin rights activist. He says Flipper committed suicide and that it is not uncommon for captive dolphins to do the same.

  12. #12 |  JOR | 

    “I really hate it when I read stuff about immigration and people use “hate” to refer to the basis of bad legislation. I disagree a lot with the laws that Arizona and Alabama have passed recently, but it’s not about hate or racism. They’re pissed of about laws being broken.”

    Does this same reasoning apply in defense of drug warriors? And should we support enforcing the law as ruthlessly as possible against people caught with weed until we can change the law by working politely with the people who hate drug users (or, sorry, are just pissed off about laws being broken) enough to want to terrorize and rob them/lock them up in rape camps/shoot them?

    It’s fair to call people who insist on applying a hateful and racist system hateful racists, regardless of their personal feelings about brown people or Spanish-speakers or whatever. A person’s actions define them more than their feelings do.

  13. #13 |  Leonard | 

    What “unintended consequences”? The article gives no substantive examples. I can see some intended consequences (contractors getting forms). And I can also see some anecdotes (a line at a DMV!), and some obviously autoproctological numbers (11 billion dollars!!).

    The article is propaganda.

    Meanwhile, it is perhaps worth mentioning that Alabama’s unemployment rate dropped faster than all neighboring states, and the country’s. That, in case we are keeping a score, is an intended consequence of the “anger”. So perhaps a line on some particular day at one of the DMVs in Alabama really was caused by the law somehow, but you ought to weigh it against the redistribution of jobs from criminals to your fellow law-abiding citizens.

  14. #14 |  Andrew S. | 

    Hi, Leonard. I’d like to teach you a term. It’s called “post hoc, ergo propter hoc”. Look it up.

    A: Law against illegal immigration. B: Unemployment rate goes down. Does that necessarily mean that A caused B? Again, look it up.

    I thank you for your time.

  15. #15 |  Bad Medicine | 

    As a former private pilot, I cringe at the impact that type of asset forfeiture will have on general aviation in that area, not to mention the small businesses ruined and people made bankrupt due to no fault of their own. I realize it’s no worse than many of the other asset forfeiture cases Radley has posted about, but this one hits close to home. As someone commented above, folks in the general aviation community don’t have the bucks to fight this, and I’m not sure AOPA would even have the resources to tackle that 800lb. gorilla…

  16. #16 |  Delta | 

    “‘Ironically, the same Skyhawk stopped while taxiing toward the runway with three passengers, identified in court documents as Mexican nationals who had entered the country illegally, has been used to ferry pilots to pick up many seized aircraft’, Marsh said. ‘Oddly enough, the building that I’m in stores seized airplanes,’ Marsh said. ‘I frequently send my pilots down with 83E to bring back other airplanes for storage that they’ve seized.’”

    There’s at least a little shadenfreude there.

  17. #17 |  Mattocracy | 

    JOR,

    I didn’t say we should support crappy laws. No where did I say that. I just don’t think it’s accurate to say the motivations for these laws as hate driven. So no, you’re drug war anology doesn’t compare.

    I don’t believe the bad immigration laws are about race. It’s about a belief in an artificial construct of what gives someone a legal right to be some place. If Canadians were coming across the border in droves looking for jobs, I don’t they would get a free pass because they look more like the white majority here. I believe that the immigration hawks would be just a driven to curb that trend as well.

    I believe that the people who are opposed to illegal immigration are upset because laws are not being obeyed. I think the same is true about drug warriors. I don’t the DEA or any other drug warrior is sitting around saying “shit yeah, let’s put a disproprtionate number of minorities in prison compared to white people.” Just because a policy is negatively affecting one race or group more than any other doesn’t prove that it’s about hate or race. These laws are about the actions people do, not about what they look like.

    It’s still wrong, the drug war and our restricted immigration laws. It’s just not right to assume such negative motivations of people who you disagree with.

  18. #18 |  JOR | 

    I don’t think we should assume anything about anyone’s motives, exactly; that’s always a losing game without very intimate knowledge or psychic powers. Racism isn’t about motives, it’s about actions, and results. In fact, I’d hope people who support bad laws don’t have racist motives at all; that makes calling out the racism of their favored policies all the more important and effective.

    Of course, treating the law as a sacred cow worth sacrificing people to for its own sake is an even darker motive to ascribe to someone than mundane racism. People who really do think like that are not worth pandering to, and arguably should be dropped in the ocean somewhere.

  19. #19 |  albatross | 

    JOR:

    I do not believe that most people who support the drug laws have it in for blacks, hispanics, or pain patients. They support laws that screw lots of people over, and disproportionate amounts of the screwing over lands on those three groups, but that’s not the same thing as hating members of those three groups.

    Further, we could have drug laws without nearly so much screwing over of those groups. There’s no inherent reason we need to have the DEA and prosecutors looking over the shoulders of doctors treating pain patients, or much harsher sentences for crack than for powder cocaine, or long mandatory minimum sentences for small-time drug dealing. Those are all choices, just like doing drug enforcement by SWAT raid is a choice, independent of whether or not we have drug laws.

    I want the drug laws gone. But I would be almost as happy for forcing the drug war to be fought in a saner way, with very few SWAT raids, very little interference in the practice of medicine by DEA agents, sensible sentences, etc.

  20. #20 |  David | 

    I’m not certain the people who support drug laws have it in for black or Hispanic people. But the ones who enforce them sure seem to.

    Well, I mean, they’ve got it in for all of us. But ethnic minorities even more so.

  21. #21 |  Mattocracy | 

    To be racist means you believe one race is superior to another. Drug laws and immigration laws (at least in America) aren’t about proving any racial superiority. So I don’t think it is right to say some policy is racist when that isn’t the motivator of said policy. These policies are simply unfair. That’s reason enough to oppose them.

    That’s what this is really all about. Our immigration laws are unfair to a particular group (really several groups) and they need to be changed to be fair rather than amped up to make the institutionalized inequality worse.

  22. #22 |  shecky | 

    If Canadians were coming across the border in droves looking for jobs, I don’t they would get a free pass because they look more like the white majority here.

    I have little faith that this would be true. The reason? Canadian WASPs are difficult to distinguish from American WASPs. When was the last time you grumbled about illegal Canadians? Probably been a while. Most likely because you had no idea where they were. Besides, they looked just like everyone else. Mexicans, otoh, are much easier to peg as outsiders due to at the very least, appearance.

    To be racist means you believe one race is superior to another.

    Racism also happens when endorsing policy that ends in outcomes that unfairly segregate by color. No actual racist beliefs need be present when racism is institutionalized. The system does the ugly stuff for you.

  23. #23 |  croaker | 

    Can’t sleep? DC has a SWAT team for that.

    http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/02/06/43643.htm

  24. #24 |  sigh | 

    ” “Oddly enough, the building that I’m in stores seized airplanes,” Marsh said. “I frequently send my pilots down with 83E to bring back other airplanes for storage that they’ve seized.” ”

    As much as this sucks, here is a radical idea –

    STOP SUPPORTING THE ACTIONS OF THE POLICE STATE

    …Everyone stumbling around like a bunch of zombies, not caring what The Man is doing until they’re the one being screwed. Pretty much the same as always.

    Perhaps things would be different at this point if all the private pilots had told them to piss off and go get “their” own damn airplanes. Bonus points for arm-flapping motions included with the delivery.

  25. #25 |  V | 

    I read a pretty good article from a former marine mammologist turned writer regarding the lawsuit. Bottom line is that the most of the biological arguments are sound except for a couple of paragraphs, and that the defense’s arguments are, to a limited degree, fallacious. Arguing the Constitution only applies to “people” is funny as prior to the Civil War, the Constitution still only applied to “people” although the definition of a person was much narrower.

    The second arguement that it would cause a massive upheaval isn’t really in and of itself an argument. It’s more a lazy excuse to not change anything because the change would be too massive. It’d be akin to ending the drug war. The degree of change on every government level, from federal to city, would be immense, but that’s certainly no argument against ending the drug war.

    Ultimately, the question becomes how do we define beings who get granted rights?

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