Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Friday, August 14, 2015 6:10 pm

Odds and ends for Aug. 14

U.S. Rep. Walter “Freedom Fries” Jones, a Republican who represents North Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District, voted for war against Iraq. However, unlike so many backers of that misbegotten expedition, he deeply and publicly repented of that decision. And he’s still repenting:

“I did not do what I should have done to read and find out whether Bush was telling us the truth about Saddam being responsible for 9/11 and having weapons of mass destruction. Because I did not do my job then, I helped kill 4,000 Americans, and I will go to my grave regretting that.”

Chelsea Manning committed a crime knowing prison would be the likely outcome. Still, the military’s threat to place her in indefinite solitary confinement strikes me as piling on.

Could we be seeing a “Central American spring”? I’ll believe it when/if it comes to pass, but I’m hopeful.

Connecticut has banned the death penalty, but I’m thinking that in this particular case the state Supreme Court may have overreached in doing so.



  1. The Connecticut Supreme Court did not abolish the death penalty or declare it to be unconstitutional. What happened was that the Connecticut legislature abolished the death penalty, but failed to make the new law retroactive. That left eleven people on death row. The Court decided that it was arbitrary to put them to death while people who commit murder after the effective date of the law get life in prison. This is a highly technical legal issue, but it is a familiar one to lawyers: a legislature cannot make arbitrary distinctions when drawing up a statute. For example, you can pass a law that says felons can’t vote, but you can’t pass one that says “guys named Lex can’t vote.” It’s an old principle and it is routinely applied to all kinds of statutes.

    That will be $275, please.

    Comment by Sid Barrett — Friday, August 14, 2015 6:32 pm @ 6:32 pm

    • Um … you can have your $275 back. The majority opinion of the Court did indeed throw in language that said the death penalty violated the cruel and unusual punishment clause. It appears they did it just in case a future legislature decided to change its collective mind and reinstate the death penalty. It sure sent the dissenting justices into orbit, but that’s becoming the new normal among appellate courts in the new post-Scalia “fuck you and the horse you rode in on” world of judicial opinion writing, as appellate judges adopt the scorched earth approach that the other two branches of gummint use with those who dare to disagree

      Comment by Sid Barrett — Friday, August 14, 2015 6:40 pm @ 6:40 pm

  2. I’m from CT.

    Comment by abipolarjon — Saturday, August 15, 2015 8:30 am @ 8:30 am

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