I’ve spent the better part of the week serving as the foreman for a jury in a criminal case. As they tell you, you’re not allowed to talk about it with anyone, not even your fellow jurors, during the trial. As they also tell you, once the trial is over you can talk about anything you want. So, here goes.
posted by DarlingBri
on Nov 22, 2010 -
Judge Rules "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Is Unconstitutional
- Judge Virginia A. Phillips of Federal District Court struck down President Clinton's Don't Ask, Don't Tell
(DADT) policy in an opinion
(Scribd) issued late Thursday, ruling on the constitutionality of a complaint brought by the Log Cabin Republicans
(PDF). President Obama's Justice Department has until a September 23 deadline to submit objections to the court regarding Judge Phillips's permanent injunction, which is uncertain given Obama's previous support of his Department of Justice defending the legality of DADT, despite his opposition to DADT in principle.
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Sep 9, 2010 -
Alan Jacobs laments the Hobbesian reality that is modern Internet discourse in his article "The Online State of Nature
" at Big Questions Online
A now-famous cartoon on the xkcd “webcomics” site shows a stick figure typing away at his computer keyboard as a voice from outside the frame says, “Are you coming to bed?” The figure replies: “I can’t. This is important. . . . Someone is wrong on the Internet.” I have thought a lot about why people get so hostile online, and I have come to believe it is primarily because we live in a society with a hypertrophied sense of justice and an atrophied sense of humility and charity, to put the matter in terms of the classic virtues.
posted by ob1quixote
on Aug 31, 2010 -
With a ruling scheduled
today on Prop 8 — the California ballot measure that took away the right to marry from same-sex couples — Dave Fleischer has an in-depth analysis
of all of the polling data
on Prop 8, and his findings include some counter-intuitive numbers, like that the confusing wording actually ended up helping the No vote more than the Yes.
posted by klangklangston
on Aug 4, 2010 -
Norway's penal system has gathered some attention recently, as the new Halden prison
just opened. The $217 million facility will house 252 prisoners, some long-term and some short. The new prison is notable for, among other things, use of armoured glass instead of bars on windows, natural lighting
and single-inmate cells with private showers, TVs and access to a gym and a sound studio. There was also an art budget, and Norwegian street artist Dolk
was commisioned to decorate some of the walls. The Norwegian penal system is similar to the other Scandinavian countries', with no death penalty, and a "life" sentence of 21 years. In Norway there are no privately run incarceration facilities, and the opening of the rather plush-seeming Halden prison spurred some discussion, but garnered no big controversy. [more inside]
posted by Harald74
on May 27, 2010 -
Arms dealers affiliated with 22 companies, including one with a former Joint Chief of Staff on its board of directors, have been indicted
for soliciting kickbacks on multimillion dollar deals to supply munitions to representatives of a fictitious African government. [more inside]
posted by minimii
on Jan 21, 2010 -
Judge William Wayne Justice. 1920 -2009.
Appointed to the federal bench in 1968, Judge Justice spent his career as a progressive jurist working to insure the rights of minorities, the poor and the disenfranchised. His rulings
forced the State of Texas to desegregate public schools, reform its prison system and provide education to undocumented immigrants.
posted by anticlock
on Oct 15, 2009 -
The Obama administration has repeatedly threatened to conceal future information of terrorist threats from the British government, unless the British government disobeys the High Court ruling requiring them to release information about the US government's acknowledged torture program. This may be a breach of the Convention Against Torture. Glenn Greenwald
has new evidence. Previously.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94
on May 12, 2009 -
Binyam Mohamed will shortly be released from Guantanamo, where hunger strikes
attempts to assesses the level of President Obama's apparent commitment to transparency, accountability for Bush administration officials who may have committed crimes, and adhering to the rule of law. It highlights Glenn Greenwald's recent article
There is simply no way to argue that our leaders should be immunized from criminal investigations for torture and other war crimes without believing that (a) the U.S. is and should be immune from the principles we've long demanded other nations obey and (b) we are free to ignore our treaty obligations any time it suits us.
posted by adamvasco
on Feb 22, 2009 -
dashed against rocks; attempts to twist off the heads of toddlers. Girls, their mothers and grandmothers (and sometimes male relatives too) raped at knife- or gunpoint, the weapons then used to inflict mutilation. Women hauled off to camps or just tied to trees and gang-raped. Thousands of children, some as young as nine, snatched or recruited by armed gangs (or regular forces) and made into drug-crazed killers, the girls among them often serially abused or taken by commanders as “wives”. Such are the horrors reported from some recent conflict zones... [more inside]
posted by kliuless
on Feb 21, 2009 -