Editors’ Choice

Posts selected by Moose editors

Barack Obama: “Love comes more naturally to the human heart.”

President Barack Obama spoke in South Africa commemorating the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s birth at the 16th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture.

His speech was uplifting even as it warned of the challenges to our world from strongmen and the hatred and division they embrace.

From Time videos:

President Obama with his message of hope (which was also Mandela’s):

Madiba reminds us that: “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart.” Love comes more naturally to the human heart, let’s remember that truth. Let’s see it as our North Star, let’s be joyful in our struggle to make that truth manifest here on earth so that in 100 years from now, future generations will look back and say, ‘they kept the march going, that’s why we live under new banners of freedom.’

Full transcript below.

VNV Tuesday – …Doomed to Repeat It (Lochner v. New York, 1905; Part Two) 7/17/18

Lochner’s Home Bakery, where it all started.

Last week, the background leading to the Lochner v. New York lawsuit was discussed, as well as the decision of the majority which reversed the holdings of the county court, the New York Supreme Court, and the Court of Appeals. (Part One) Initially, the vote was 5-4 in favor of upholding the New York law, and Justice John Harlan wrote the draft opinion, while Justice Rufus Peckham wrote the draft dissent. Somewhere along the way, however, one justice changed their vote (most sources suggest it was Chief Justice Melville Fuller), and the opinion of Justice Harlan, with Justices Edward White and William Day concurring, became the dissent. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote a separate dissent.

Fighting Back: “Only those already well off are better off under this Republican economy”

 
 

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut.

(Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) on Kavanaugh nomination)

“From President Trump’s repeated campaign promises, we know that Judge Kavanaugh poses a grave threat to women’s health care and the weakening of Roe v. Wade. We know he will vote to effectively eliminate the Affordable Care Act and undermine protections for millions of Americans who suffer from pre-existing conditions, including more than 500,000 Connecticut residents,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). “My colleagues and I are often asked by constituents: what can we do? The answer is stand up and speak out. It’s a call to action. Mobilize your neighbors and galvanize the American public – just as we did during the health care debate, when they tried time and again to ram through Trumpcare. The risk to our healthcare system is just as great now as it was then.”

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

VNV Tuesday – …Doomed to Repeat It (Lochner v. New York, 1905) 7/10/18

Lochner’s Home Bakery, where it all started.

Like most non-lawyers, I struggle to understand the nuances of Supreme Court decisions, and I rely heavily on SCOTUSBlog (found here) to explain decisions in terms that I can understand. When the Janus v. AFSCME decision came down, followed by Justice Kennedy’s retirement announcement, I heard a lot of people talking about a return to the Lochner era. I had a vague recollection of the decision, but that mostly consisted of Lochner = bad. Today’s post is my IANAL attempt to provide an overview of the 1905 Lochner decision.

Celebrating Democratic Party History: The Civil Rights Act of 1964

On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson, Democrat, signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964

The act outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion or national origin and gave the federal courts jurisdiction over enforcement, taking it out of the state courts where justice was uneven at best.

The Civil Rights Act had political ramifications as well. Its adoption caused a mass exodus of angry racists from the Democratic Party in the old south to the Republican Party. And the politics born of hatred of The Other gave the not-so-Grand Old Party the presidency for 28 out of the next 40 years.

VNV Tuesday – 1000 Words 7/3/18

WWI Political Cartoon

I’m taking the easy way out this week and letting political cartoons do the talking for me again. I have plenty of topics I want to write about, but they’re all research- and writing-heavy, and with this week being incredibly busy at work, I just don’t have the time I need to complete everything. I will be around today, but sporadically and as my work allows.

Fighting Back: “The Roberts Court has done violence to our democracy.”

 
 

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Rep. Matt Cartwright of Pennsylvania.

(In this week’s address, Congressman Matt Cartwright discussed the Supreme Court’s Janus ruling and Democrats’ new Better Deal legislation to guarantee the right for public employees to organize, act concertedly and bargain collectively in states that currently do not afford these basic protections.)

This week, instead of honoring our American tradition of supporting labor unions, the Supreme Court’s ideological decision overturned a 40-year precedent. Forty years of the fabric of American law, torn up.

This decision enables free-riding by those who benefit from union agreements but don’t want to pay their fair share. […]

While Washington Republicans are rigging the rules against workers – in the Courts and the Congress – Democrats are fighting to deliver A Better Deal to working men and women. Now is not the time to turn back the clock on fair pay. Now is the time for us fight back.

That’s why yesterday afternoon, joined by Senator Hirono, I proudly introduced the Public Service Freedom to Negotiate Act. Our bill reaffirms the right of every public sector employee to join a union and bargain collectively.

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

VNV Tuesday – …Doomed to Repeat It (Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act of 1930) 6/26/18

Willis C. Hawley (left) and Reed Smoot meeting shortly after the signing of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act.

If you’re like me, the Smoot-Hawley (sometimes called Hawley-Smoot) Tariff Act is a vague memory from high school history class and a less-vague memory from this scene in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off:

Since tariffs have been in the news lately, I thought this would be a good time to review the most infamous tariff act in United States history, the Smoot-Hawley Act of 1930.

Fighting Back: They are all our children – “If you come near our cubs, you’ve got a problem.”

 
 

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii.

“These are not normal times. On issue after issue, Donald Trump creates a crisis, blames others for what’s happening, and uses the ensuing chaos to demand a legislative solution that often harms even more people. Democrats are calling on President Trump to use his executive authority to reunite the 2,400 separated children with their parents. We are calling on him to resolve many other problems his executive order created. And we are calling on his administration to stop its sabotage of our health care system and work with us on a bipartisan basis to protect and improve our health care system.”

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)