Thursday, March 30, 2006

SJC: Mass. can bar out of state gays and lesbans from marrying


Don Surber thinks we are.  I'm not sure if I should be offended - or merely amused at his Fenway envy - so I'll let it slide. (Oops!  There I go being insufferable, I suppose.)

 I won't quibble too much with his regular season prediction for the AL East, though; if his hatred of the Sox will get us to the playoffs, I'll take it.

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Summary Disposition

Environmental Republican on Barry Bonds, steroids, and sensationalism in McPaper:

Give me a friggin' break. The reason that people don't want Bonds to surpass Ruth or Aaaron is simple--he cheated. There's no racial angle here, just the angle of a player who has treated fans and fellow players alike like garbage. He has shown no respect for the game. It's no different than Mark McGwire's tainted HR season or Ken Caminitti's MVP year. In my mind, they cheated and those records should be erased.

Get off the racial angle and focus on the real issue; a stronger steroid policy would instill the respect and trust back the game that was lost when these idiots injected an enhancement substance into their bodies.

Read it all.

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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Fresh Fodder for the Cannon

Just when I start to think I am (temporarily) running out of bogging ideas, something like this comes along.

The Alliance for Justice has started a blog: Full Court Press.  In the usual arrogant AFJ fashion, the blog purports to "keep you up-to-date about the rapidly increasing number of judicial opinions that unjustifiably restrict rights, undermine legal protections, and adversely affect real people."

Notice how they make no promise to justify their preferred (and ultimately losing) outcomes, demonstrating why they should have prevailed?  That's because, as often as not if the first few posts are indicative, this is really more about the evils of Republican-appointed judges (except, of course, those named Souter, Stevens, and sometimes Kennedy) than about why their legal arguments should have won.

I fully expect the Full Court Press to supply me with blogging material for some time to come.

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Criminal Bumper Stickers

Stone Soup Musings points us to this case about a Georgia woman who received a $100 ticket for having a "lewd decal" on her car.

Apparently, the cop thought the lewd decal law applied to a bumper sticker that read, "I'm tired of all the BUSHIT."

Apparently, the same cop also missed the memo that the lewd decal law had been held unconstitutional fifteen years ago.

I would chalk this up to the absurd if the implications weren't so troubling.  I don't buy the argument that this is an extended action of the Bush administration, and to my mind that makes matters worse, in a way.  Having seen firsthand how individual crooked police officers can use simple traffic tickets to create trouble for citizens (and increase the city's revenues), I have to think that this sort of development is worse because it is decentralized, and thus trends are nearly impossible to track.

I don't have a lot of sympathy for the way the message was conveyed.  The use of expletives is far from clever, and doesn't offer much insight into the issues. It's not an argument or an explanation, but a mere expression of frustration: one that is only a notch or two above a primal scream.

Nevertheless, it's protected.  An expression of frustration with the government that plays on a vulgar word for an excretory function is no less political than the Declaration of Independence itself.  Beyond that, we engage in qualitative stratification of speech at our liberties' peril, if not at our own.

Linked to Don Surber.

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Rock Royalty (Refreshingly) Plays the Commoner

Alexa Ray Joel, the daughter of Billy Joel, debuted Monday at Harper's Ferry, a small Boston-area venue.  She did it with neither fanfare nor entourage. 

And, the Globe thinks she did pretty well.

I wonder how many eardrums would be intact today if Kelly Osbourne and others at her level would have followed a similar humble path.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

You can stay at the J-A-I-L

Victor Willis, the policeman from the Village People, is facing up to five years in prison.  After agreeing to a plea deal last year on weapon and drug charges that would have capped his jail time at sixteen months, he bolted.

Well done.

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Cafe Owners of the World, Unite!

Scot Lehigh of the Boston Globe pens a spot-on column today about Doting Indulgent Modern Parents (DIMPIES) that is well worth reading in full:

Our fortunes took an even starker turn a few days later when we stopped at a trendy Charlestown bakery, there to encounter a DIMPIE couple sipping coffee while their daughter played at decibel levels that should carry an OSHA warning. For the first few minutes of our (abbreviated) stay, the little terror staged a loud animal-kingdom Armageddon with her plastic menagerie. That concluded, she proceeded to run a 10K around the table.

Now, so cowed am I by the objections that meet my intermittent efforts to promote better public behavior that I've grown hesitant to urge DIMPIES to discipline their children. Indeed, I've come to understand that the very term fairly reeks of neocolonial parental imperialism.

I can't tell you how many times I have gone into a coffee shop on a Saturday morning, only to have the tranquility shattered by the spawn of a discipline-averse parent.  Though I am not a parent (and will not be for another few years, at least), I do acknowledge that raising children is difficult work and that parents need an occasional escape, too.  Most of them truly deserve it.  I'm not about to begrudge someone a leisurely cup of coffee on a Saturday morning, after all.  I do draw the line though when the parent's temporary abdication of responsibility intrudes on my own little escape from the mundane.  God knows that the three-year-old Exile would never have gotten away with running around a coffee shop for more than one and a half seconds without swift and serious consequences.

Really, though, you do see this sort of thing everywhere: cafes, grocery stores, airplanes, and busses.  And it is unreasonable to expect children, as the colonial Americans did, to act as miniature adults.  Indeed, children will be children.

Parents - some of them, anyway - just need to step up and be parents.

MORE: It occurs to me that an experience from last night is relevant here, if indirectly.  The Lady Exile and I were at Om in Cambridge for a drink after work.  Directly across from us was a family of four: parents and two small children, the older no older than the age of five.  As is her usual practice, Lady E complimented the parents on how well-behaved their children were.  They looked very surprised to hear this, since I imagine it doesn't happen often.  Were the kids angels?  Not exactly.  They weren't perfectly still, nor were they perfectly quiet.  But, on the whole, they didn't disrupt anyone in the surrounding area.  If only they were all taught to act this way in public . . .

Linked to Don Surber.

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Card Resigns

CNN is reporting that White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card has resigned.  More later.

Monday, March 27, 2006

New Mass. Lottery Game to Offer Sox Season Tix

Today's sign of the Apocalypse

A statute of a "nude Britney Spears giving birth."

The clay sculpture features a nude Britney Spears on a bearskin rug while giving birth to her firstborn because, according to Edwards, pop-star Britney Spears is the "ideal model for Pro-Life."

This is particularly ironic since Britney could just as easily be an ideal model for, as the Lady Exile might say, an extremely late-term abortion (say, twenty years or so post partum should do the trick). 

[via: The Llama Butchers]

More:  phin's blog has similar thoughts, and a link to the sculpture.

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RINO Sightings Monday

Quaid Sues "Brokeback" Producers

Does anyone else find it surprising that Randy Quaid commands a seven-figure fee and a cut of the gross receipts when he does a movie?  Apparently, that's one of the grounds for his $10 million fraud claim against the producers of the multiple Oscar winner, Brokeback Mountain.

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