The principles that rule this blog

Principles that will govern my thoughts as I express them here (from my opening statement):

  • Freedom of the individual should be as total as possible, limited only by the fact that nobody should be free to cause physical injury to another, or to deprive another person of his freedoms.
  • Government is necessary primarily to provide those services that private enterprise won't, or won't at a price that people can afford.
  • No person has a right to have his own beliefs on religious, moral, political, or other controversial issues imposed on others who do not share those beliefs.

I believe that Abraham Lincoln expressed it very well:

“The legitimate object of government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done, but cannot do, at all, or cannot
so well do, for themselves — in their separate, individual capacities.”

Comments will be invited, and I will attempt to reply to any comments that are offered in a serious and non-abusive manner. However, I will not tolerate abusive or profane language (my reasoning is that this is my blog, and so I can control it; I wouldn't interfere with your using such language on your own!)

If anyone finds an opinion that I express to be contrary to my principles, they are welcome to point this out. I hope that I can make a rational case for my comments. Because, in fact, one label I'll happily accept is rationalist.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A stupid judge

Judge Susan Bolton, a Federal judge in the district court for Arizona, has granted a preliminary injunction to the Federal Government against the Arizona law on illegal immigration. She did not give the Federal Government all that it requested — there are clauses that were allowed to go into effect — but Arizona cannot enforce some of the more controversial parts of the law for the time being.

The final decision has not been made by Judge Bolton — and when it has, an appeal will certainly be made by the State of Arizona — but even this much is a stupid action on her part. The whole case rests on a question of the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution — which addresses conflicts between Federal and State laws. But the Arizona law does not attempt to nullify a Federal law. How any judge can see a case of the Supremacy Clause applying is beyond me. The Arizona law clearly states that it is enacted in conformity with the applicable Federal law. The judge issued a 36-page ruling, and while I have only partially read it, I do not see anywhere where Judge Bolton has made a case that there is, in fact, a conflict between the Arizona law and Federal law. She is clearly acting as a politician, and not a judge. She was appointed by Pres. William J. Clinton, and does not want to rule against a Democratic administration on what has become a highly partisan issue.

So now we await the appeal. It probably will need to go to the Supreme Court, which I trust to be reasonable.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A message to readers

Just recently the folks at Google added an experimental draft feature to enable bloggers on here to get statistics on people visiting the blogs. I tried it, and found that this blog does get visitors -- a reasonable amount of traffic, actually.

The thing I wonder is: Why does hardly anyone comment? Up until this new stats feature, the only way I had to see whether anyone was reading my posts here was looking for comments. And with so few comments, I had to assume nobody was reading them. The only comments seemed to have been put by spammers, and of course those I deleted as soon as I saw them. (Strangely, they nearly all were posted as comments to one post, which I put up around two years ago!) And really, thst's pretty discouraging.

So please, I'd like to see people comment -- to say they agree, or they disagree, or to raise a question, or whatever!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Elena Kagan (again)

On May 13, I posted a message about Elena Kagan, Pres. Obama's nominee for the Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Stevens' retirement. And in the intervening 2½ months, nothing much has happened to change my thoughts.

The only Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee to vote to confirm her nomination was Lindsey Graham, of South Carolina. It does seem strange that the others are trying to fight this nomination. After all, as I stated in my May 13 posting, it's Justice Stevens she'd be replacing. She could hardly swing the court much further leftward.

Hopefully, this November the composition of the Senate will change in a more Republican direction. Why not save your energy for the next nomination?