September 14th, 2005

hello?

See what had happened with judicial activism was...

Via the ever-alert ortho_bob comes this delightful guide to determining what liberals REALLY mean. Note that this isn't just some dingbat talking head of the sort at which I normally shoot spitballs in this space, but rather a fairly large and influential lobbying group in DC. Anyway, they sure do have our number:

When liberals say civil rights, they mean racial quotas and forced busing.

Yes, that's right! We aren't talking about, say, letting people vote, or repealing bans on interracial dating, or creating tough anti-lynching laws, or ending segregation, or addressing the massive inequality in law enforcement, income or housing. What we really want is to force your children to go to school with Negroes.

When liberals say reproductive rights, they mean underage girls should get abortions without notifying their parents.

Right again! In fact, in a perfect world, we would demand it. Fuck all this noise you may have heard about keeping abortions safe, legal and rare: our ultimate goal is to force all girls under the age of 18 to get abortions, even if we have to forcibly impregnate them to do so.

When liberals say equal pay for women, they mean government bureaucrats determining your pay.

Uh...well, insofar as it results in equal pay, then yes, I suppose so, in the same way that when I say I want some copies made, I really mean that I want some copy shop employee to operate a photocopier.

When liberals say environmental protection and worker rights, they mean the government has unlimited power to regulate private property and business.

If anything, this is sugarcoating it. When I blab on about how everyone should be able to make a living wage and work in a safe environment, or about how we maybe shouldn't irrevocably harm our environment just so some people can make more money, what I'm really talking about is putting CEOs in gulags where they will be killed with knives.

When liberals say church-state separation, they mean your town can't display a Menorah or Christmas creche during the holidays.

Hey, you left out Eid stuff, and Kwanzaa stuff, and Chinese New Year stuff! I'm sure you care just as much about letting government money pay for those religious displays, right, the amusingly named Committee for Justice?

They then go on about how "(John) Roberts will benefit the country by not being a judicial activist", by which they apparently mean "John Roberts will benefit the country by never, ever hearing any cases in which an interpretation of constitutional law might be necessary". Since interpreting the Constitution to determine whether or not a law is permissible is pretty much the only occupation of a Supreme Court justice, what exactly Roberts will spend the next 30 years doing is unclear, but here's what he WON'T be doing:

"He won't redefine traditional marriage."

Unfortunately, since the Constitution does not define traditional marriage, he couldn't do this even if he wanted to. What he can do is to determine whether or not someone's legal rights are being violated according to the Constitution, though.

"He won't strike 'under God' from the Pledge of Allegiance."

Indeed he won't, since there is no constitutional definition of what constitutes the Pledge of Allegience, nor will there ever be. He might, however, be called upon to decide whether or not people should be forced to say the Pledge of Allegience. That being a constitutional issue and all, and he lobbying for a seat on the Supreme Court, whose purpose it remains to make decisions about the constitutionality of various laws.

"He won't force the Boy Scouts to hire openly homosexual Scoutmasters."

You know, I might just be misinformed about this issue, but I don't think anyone is proposing that the Boy Scouts be forced to hire openly homosexual Scoutmasters. I think maybe, just maybe, the question is whether they should be allowed to not hire openly homosexual Scoutmasters, which may seem like a rather arcane distinction, but that's what the law is made of.

"He won't protect simulated child pornography on the Internet."

Hmmm. What exactly is 'simulated child pornography'? Is it actual child pornography, or simply a remarkably subtle evocation of child pornography? If only we had some sort of branch of government, whose task it was to settle these thorny questions.

"He won't eliminate the right to gun ownership.".

Unlike, uh...all the other liberal justices who have made it so no one can get guns anymore?

"He won't permit the politicians to regulate what we say about them at election time."

By this, of course, they mean he won't permit PACs and special interest groups to pour unlimited funds into the making of patently bogus attack ads. And good thing, too, because those sure do advance the cause of enlightened democracy.

"He won't allow government to treat people differently because of their skin color."

Oh ho ho, this is a funny one. What they mean here is, he won't allow government to engage in affirmative action, which is an attempt to address nearly two centuries of racial injustice. Up until around, oh, 1964, American conservatives were all for allowing government to treat people differently because of their skin color. Apparently racial differentiation is only good when it hurts people, not when it helps people.

"He won't allow Congress to legislate in areas where the Constitution doesn't grant it authority."

Yeah? Like, say, passing laws that contradict already-extant ones in order to keep one single brain-dead person alive? Or not like that? More like, say, forcing the government to stop counting votes in a closely contested presidential election in order to hand the victory to their candidate of choice? Help me out here, I'm not a lawyer.
flavored with age

Name the Capitals!

The capital of Alaska is JUNEAU. It was named for a statement made by its first mayor to a Mr. Steinberg, who wished to settle nearby.

The capital of Hawaii is HONOLULU. It was named for a Polynesian word meaning "froofy girl-drink".

The capital of California is SACRAMENTO. It was named for a local religious cult that worshiped European candies.

The capital of Arizona is PHOENIX. It was named for the X-Man formerly known as Marvel Girl; during its boom years in the late 1980s, it was briefly renamed DARK PHOENIX.

The capital of New Mexico is SANTA FE. It was named for the Spanish name for St. Fey, the patron saint of slightly effeminate homosexual men.

The capital of Texas is AUSTIN. It was named after Col. Steve Austin, a heroic local pilot who was rebuilt into a bionic cyborg following a near-fatal accident.

The capital of Louisiana is BATON ROUGE. It was named for the French words meaning "red stick", the traditional implement used for poking out the eyes of politicians caught taking graft.

The capital of Mississippi is JACKSON. It was named following a radio contest in 1988 (it was originally called "Action Jackson", but it was shortened following a lawsuit).

The capital of Alabama is MONTGOMERY. It was named after the renowned WWI general, who threatened to overrun Washington, DC with tanks if he did not get a state capital named after him.

The capital of Florida is TALLAHASSEE. It is named after a Pensacola Indian word meaning "election fraud".

The capital of Georgia is ATLANTA. It is named after an acronym meaning "Moving Africans Rapidly Through Atlanta".

The capital of South Carolina is COLUMBIA. It is named after the District of Columbia, which was named after the song "Columbia, Gem of the Ocean", which was named after Columbia Studios, which itself was named after the nation of Colombia, which would like to point out that it is spelt with two Os and no U.

The capital of North Carolina is RALEIGH. It was named after the popular brand of cigarette, which owns most of the state.

The capital of Virginia is RICHMOND. It was named after its most prominent citizen, former bike racing champion Greg Le Mond, who is very wealthy.

The capital of West Virginia is CHARLESTON. It was named after the dance craze, which all citizens must perform on their 18th birthday or face a heavy fine.

The capital of Pennsylvania is HARRISBURG. It was named after some guy named Harris.

The capital of New Jersey is TRENTON. It was named after the lead singer of Nine Inch Nails, who once called it a "festering shithole". The town dedicated its name to him after deciding this was the nicest thing anyone had said about them.

The capital of New York is ALBANY. No, really! It's Albany!

The capital of Massachusetts is BOSTON. It was named after the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, who wrote our national anthem, "Sweet Emotion".

The capital of Vermont is MONTPELIER. It was named after a mountain on which some dudes once got seriously baked.

The capital of Delaware is DOVER. It was named after its founder, Benjamin Dover, who fled England to escape religious persecution and lame jokes about his name.

The captial of Maryland is ANNAPOLIS. It was named for the Latin words polis, meaning "city", and anna, meaning "hot blonde tennis player who never wins anything".

The capital of New Hampshire is CONCORD. It was named after everyone's favorite kind of grape juice.

The capital of Maine is AUGUSTA. It was named after the Roman emperor Caesar Augustus, who invented a month with no holidays in it.

The capital of Connecticut is HARTFORD. It was named after the beloved '70s sitcom "Mary Hartford, Mary Hartford", which was filmed there.

The capital of Rhode Island is PROVIDENCE. It was named after a statement by its Pilgrim founders to the effect that it sure was lucky they happened to find a large New England city there.

The capital of Ohio is COLUMBUS. It was named after Columbia, South Carolina.

The captial of Indiana is INDIANAPOLIS. It was named in tribute to the remarkable dullness and lack of creativity among its citizens.

The capital of Illinois is SPRINGFIELD. It was named for an old Swiss town, and it means "Let's piss off Chicago".

The capital of Iowa is DES MOINES. It was named for a French phrase meaning "I need a nap".

The capital of Michigan is LANSING. It was named for the first business which opened there, a boil-lancing service operated by an illiterate barber.

The capital of Wisconsin is MADISON. It was named after a New York sportswriter in the 1960s.

The capital of Minnesota is ST. PAUL. It was named by a local priest, who badgered the residents into changing it from its original name, "Pig's Eye Landing".*

The capital of North Dakota is BISMARCK. It was named in 1821 for a fearsome German battleship that the residents hopes would someday be built and later sunk during an unspecified global conflict of some sort.

The capital of South Dakota is PIERRE. It was named for the "Lucky Pierre", a favorite sexual activity of local perverts.

The capital of Nebraska is LINCOLN. It was named for the President in 1974, when they finally got word he had been assassinated. It is scheduled to be changed to Kennedy in 2074.

The capital of Kansas is TOPEKA. It was named for an Indian word meaning "man, enough with the fucking corn."

The capital of Oklahoma is OKLAHOMA CITY. It was named following the "It Was All We Could Think Of" Resolution of 1882.

The capital of Arkansas is LITTLE ROCK. It was named for a little rock that was found on the site by early settlers. The little rock has since been lost.

The capital of Missouri is JEFFERSON CITY. It was named by local dry cleaning maven George Jefforson prior to his relocation to a deluxe apartment on the East Side of New York.

The capital of Kentucky is FRANKFORT. It was named for an internment facility for Americans of French anscestry during the second Iraq war.

The capital of Tennessee is NASHVILLE. It was named after a popular singing group of the 1960s; it was originally named "CROSBYSTILLSNASHANDYOUNGVILLE", but this was too unwieldy to fit on City Hall.

The capital of Utah is SALT LAKE CITY. It was named after the fact that it was built right next to this big ol' salty lake.

The capital of Nevada is CARSON CITY. It was named after the 39th president, who residents mistakenly believed was named Jimmy Carson. Once the error was discovered, it was too late, as stationery had already been printed up.

The capital of Colorado is DENVER. It was named after the guy who played "Uncle Jesse" on The Dukes of Hazzard, who invented a famous omlette during his younger days living there.

The capital of Wyoming is CHEYENNE. It was named after the local Indian tribes; residents of the area wanted to have something to remember them by after they wiped them all out.

The capital of Montana is HELENA. It was named after a massive fire destroyed the previous state capital of Handbasket.

The captial of Idaho is BOISE. It was named by the town council, who decided that most American capitals were too easy to pronounce.

The capital of Oregon is SALEM. It was named after the famous witch trials which weren't held there.

The capital of Washington is OLYMPIA. It was named after a Leni Riefenstahl film following defeat of a referendum to name it Triumph Of The Will, WA.

*: This is actually true.
it says here...

50 books up ya chute

It seems obligatory to do the "50 Books a Year" thing. All the boys down at the club are talking about it. On the one hand, I've been busy this year doing freelance work, visiting my gal, and writing on my own; but on the other hand, I read a lot, because I don't really have a life, and TV is boring. So while this list may seem like a lot, it's actually not very many by my standards. In particular, I've really crapped out on reading novels this year. I'm leaving off graphic novels, comics, literary magazines, and stuff I only read part of as research (and reference works in general), as well as stuff I haven't finished yet.

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