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Lights Out

The lights went out around 12:15 last night. Some people talk about how nice it is to relax and do nothing while the power is out, but for me, losing electrical power is like losing a limb. When the power failure hit, I was sitting in front of the computer working on a couple of things […]

What Is Law That Thou Art Mindful?

When I was on a criminal jury a few years ago, the judge impressed on us how important our job was. He made sure we took it seriously. Which is one of the reasons this bullshit makes me so angry: The Minnesota Supreme Court, in a 4-3 decision, has now ruled that Bong Water (water […]

The Death Penalty and Spending Wisely

I don’t blog about the death penalty very much, mostly because I don’t care about the death penalty very much. I’m not saying it’s unimportant, but I just don’t have the urge to write about it. My position on it has been pretty bland: Some crimes are so evil that the perpetrators have forfeitted their […]

Scattershot 2009-10-23

Random shots around the web: Don’t mess with Texas. Or Texas’ pecans. When you’ve made the sale, quit talking. Remember when I called Money Laundering a fake crime? Sound like we should hire casino security experts to do the TSA’s job.

Obama Keeping His Medical Marijuana Promise?

This sounds like good news: Federal drug agents won’t pursue pot-smoking patients or their sanctioned suppliers in states that allow medical marijuana, under new legal guidelines to be issued Monday by the Obama administration. It’s about damned time.

Scattershot 2009-10-16

Random shots around the web: Lousiana justice of the peace Keith Bardwell just denied a marriage license to an interracial couple. Money quote: “I’m not a racist. I just don’t believe in mixing the races that way.” No cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security recipients this year, presumably because their cost of living has not gone […]

Of Health Insurance and Hunger

I really don’t understand healthcare reform. People keep saying that one of the biggest problems with our current system is that about 45 million people don’t have health insurance. There are reasons why that number doesn’t tell the whole story, but I can understand why people are concerned. What I don’t understand is how any […]

5 Dangerous Things You Should Let Your Kids Do

Found this posted in a comment from Jonathan C Hansen over at Simple Justice and I think it makes a lot of sense. Of course, I don’t have children, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

Gross National Happiness in Bhutan

Over at Popehat, blogger Ezra has a suggestion for future awards of the Nobel Peace Prize: I submit that the prize be awarded each year in perpituity to the nation of Bhutan. In 1972 their king uttered the simple phrase “Gross National Happiness is more important than Gross Domestic Product.” Since then, Bhutan has systematically […]

Blawg Review at Popehat

Popehat has Blawg Review #233 today, and the theme is based on the story of Joshua Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico. If you haven’t heard of Emperor Norton before, it’s a cool story. By the way, thanks to my co-blogger Joel, Blawg Review will be coming here in about […]

Photography Is Not a Crime

A friend of mine sent me a link to a New York Times piece by Randy Kennedy about photographer Mitch Epstein. He’s doing a series of photographs about America’s energy policies, photographing things like gas stations and power plants. As you might expect these days, he gets stopped by police a lot. I agree with […]

Better Candidates Than Obama

Well, now that the Nobel Committee has decided that the major qualification of a peace prized laureate is being Not George Bush, I think there’s a few folks worth considering, beyond those usually being mentioned. Hell, restricted this just to folks who, like Nobel Laureate Jimmy Carter, have been President, we’ve got quite a few […]

Bogus Pseudo Crimes

[I started writing this days ago, and the story’s gone stale, but I’m posting so little these days that I figured I should get it out there.] Some time ago, Radley Balko brought us the story of Sally Harpold, who bought two boxes of cold medicine within a few days of each other, thus violating […]

Polanski Questions

About the only good thing I can think about in the whole Polanski fooforaw is that it gives folks who wouldn’t otherwise have had one an easy opportunity to stake out a not particularly morally difficult or brave position against middle-aged guys raping young girls, and in favor of said assholes being given appropriate punishment for […]

Bloggers Are In For Some Federal Entanglement

The AP’s Deborah Yao explains: The Federal Trade Commission will try to regulate blogging for the first time, requiring writers on the Web to clearly disclose any freebies or payments they get from companies for reviewing their products. The FTC said Monday its commissioners voted 4-0 to approve the final Web guidelines, which had been […]