Thursday, March 23, 2006

I hate shaving

So here's the solution: beards.

The bit about Gillette is pretty funny. Unfortunately for me, I hate having a full beard more than I hate shaving, although I do hate shaving. So I let it grow out a bit, get all scruffy, piss off my wife, then finally begrudgingly shave once the scratching and "flavor saver" aspects of facial hair outweigh the inconvenience and pain of shaving (I have fairly sensitive skin, 'cause I'm a sensitive motherfucker).

The nice thing is that, as soon as the blood stops flowing and the swelling goes down, there are few things that don't involve genitals that feel as good as a newly shorn face.

These are conservatives?

What would you characterize as--at least in their words--the primary guiding principle of modern conservatives? Ignore the religion thing for right now (or make the distinction between small-government and religious conservatives). The single principle, the thing that makes me on occasion say, "Yeah, I'm down with that," is supposed to be personal autonomy, the security and freedom of a person in themselves without government interference. I part ways with this philosophy in that I think that there is space for affirmative civil action, not just "affirmative action," but the ability of democratically elected, accountable government as a means to deal with societal issues. But I can respect the perspective that says that it's not my problem and efforts to engage government in such issues as societal issues in American black society, gender, race or age discrimination, energy policy, etc., are more likely to run into the wall of unintended consequences rather than stride triumphantly across the finish line.

Again, I don't agree with it across the board (I'm a fairly radical civil libertarian, supporting 1st and 2nd Amendments, gay and plural marriage, across-the-board drug decriminalization, blah blah blah), but I can respect it.

So under that guiding principle, how do you explain the position of the "conservative" Justices Roberts, Scalia, and Thomas in this case? Now Scalia and Thomas claim to be "originalists," hewing to the text of the Constitution as originally intended without the skewing influence of intervening case law. Well, the text of the 4th Amendment seems pretty straightforward:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Now, many things can turn upon the definition of "unreasonable." But allowing that to become the defining limitation on the elucidated right (especially when the nature of that limitation is determined by post-Amendment jurisprudence) certainly contradicts the standard "conservative" take on the 2nd Amendment, where the "well regulated Militia" qualifier at the beginning of the Amendment is considered to be mere window dressing, providing explication and context for the straightforward right laid out thereafter: "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

I don't ask a lot of conservatives. I don't have to agree with them. We don't have to share the same bases for our opinions. I simply ask them to be consistent. Do you want government out of our lives to the greatest extent possible? If so, then quit supporting as "conservative" decisions that strike full force at the security of people in their person, home, and property. Don't support full-house searches when the resident doesn't permit it and the cops don't have a warrant. Don't support warrentless wiretapping. Don't support the government's ability to detain a person indefinitely without trial.

Or don't call yourself a conservative. Call yourself what you really are: a hypocrite.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

"Maverick" Republicans?

It's worth looking at the roll call vote for amendment 3013 to Senate concurrent resolution 83, picking out the R's in the Yea column. It's a veritable "Who's Who" of "maverick" Republicans, so-called RINOs:

  • Susan Collins (R-ME)

  • Lincoln Chafee (R-RI)

  • John McCain (R-AZ)

  • Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

  • George Voinovich (R-OH)

That's funny. See, 'cause the Senators who are voting to restore fiscal accountability are the Republicans who are considered apostates by the mainstream GOP establishment, while the GOP establishment claims fiscal accountability as one of its attributes, cf. "tax and spend" liberals.

My response is, maybe I am a tax and spend liberal (I'm not really, but let's let that slide for the purpose of an imaginary zinger retort). But at least I'd bother to tax and get the money to spend, instead of just borrowing it. "Borrow and spend" conservatives, we have to get that phraseology to become as inculcated a meme as "tax and spend" liberal...

Monday, March 13, 2006

Donald Rumsfeld is a retard

I mean, seriously, this and this and this and...

And, y'know, there's a lot more out there. Donald Rumsfeld is an oblivious idiot.

Not much posting lately because I've been busier than... uh.... something really busy. Like a beaver or something. Way busier than that.