It’s not often that a Supreme Court justice makes a factual blunder in a formal opinion.
Legal experts say Justice Antonin Scalia erred in his dissent in the 6-2 decision Tuesday to uphold the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate coal pollution that moves across state lines. The Reagan-appointed jurist argued that the majority’s decision was inconsistent with a unanimous 2001 ruling which he mistakenly said shot down EPA efforts to consider costs when setting regulations.
“This is not the first time EPA has sought to convert the Clean Air Act into a mandate for cost-effective regulation. Whitman v. American Trucking Assns., Inc., 531 U. S. 457 (2001), confronted EPA’s contention that it could consider costs in setting [National Ambient Air Quality Standards],” Scalia wrote in his dissent, which was joined by Justice Clarence Thomas.
The problem: the EPA’s position in the 2001 case was exactly the opposite. The agency was defending its refusal to consider cost as a counter-weight to health benefits when setting certain air quality standards. It was the trucking industry that wanted the EPA to factor in cost. The 9-0 ruling sided with the EPA. The author of the ruling that Scalia mischaracterized? Scalia himself.
Atlanta, Georgia (CNN) — A FedEx package handler went on a shooting rampage early Tuesday at his workplace in suburban Atlanta, wounding six people — three of them critically — before turning the gun on himself, officials said.
“That individual is deceased here at the scene,” Cobb County Police Sgt. Dana Pierce told reporters. Police were sweeping the area with search dogs to ensure no secondary devices had been planted.
Pierce would not release the name of the employee, whose body was found near a shotgun. “That was the only weapon that he had at that time,” Pierce said. “As far as I know, he worked at this location.”
Joseph Epstein, op-ed contributor to the Wall Street Journal mourns the collapse of what he describes as the “genuine ruling class”
The op-ed can be found here
SALT LAKE CITY — A federal judge on Friday struck down Utah’s Amendment 3 — which defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman — finding that it violates rights to due process and equal protection as set forth in the 14th Amendment.
Within hours, Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill confirmed that, in light of the ruling, he saw no reason to prohibit Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
I’m old enough to remember when elections had consequences. A time when voters made a decision as to what direction the country should head, at least politically. That “golden age” was as recent as 2005, when President Bush said, “We had an accountability moment, and that’s called the 2004 election.” Simply put, elections have consequences, and whether Democrats liked it or not, the people had spoken.
In 2012, the American public had a clear choice for which direction they’d like the country to move towards. Both major parties laid out clear and starkly contrasting visions: the Republican Party’s philosophy of, “You’re on your own,” versus the Democrat Party’s, “We are in this together.”
The centerpiece of the respective party’s opposing platforms was Obamacare. Romney said he’d repeal it. Obama said he’d affirm it. What did the voters say? Well, the election wasn’t even close. Obama crushed Romney in the Electoral College, 332-206, and carried every single battleground state except North Carolina. Not only did Obama win the popular vote by a margin greater than 5 million, House Democrats received 1 million more votes in congressional races than their Republican counterparts. THE PEOPLE SPOKE!
Read more at The Contributor
For-Profit Corporation Is Not A Person With Ability To Exercise Religious Freedom Rights, Federal Co
A Michigan-based for-profit business that manufactures fuel systems, power-steering systems and medical devices does not have the right to an exemption from the Obama administration’s birth control mandate, a federal appeals court ruled today.
In a unanimous opinion, the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that Autocam Corporation is not entitled to an exemption from the contraceptive mandate, which requires most businesses to provide workers with health insurance that includes no-cost birth control. The court said a secular, for-profit company is not a person that can exercise religion under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).
TIME journalist “I can’t wait to write a defense of the drone strike that takes out Julian Assange.”
Needless to say, Wikileaks are demanding his resignation.
From The Atlantic 2013-06-18 Conor Friedersdorf.
USA Today has published an extraordinary interview with three former NSA employees who praise Edward Snowden’s leaks, corroborate some of his claims, and warn about unlawful government acts.
Thomas Drake, William Binney, and J. Kirk Wiebe each protested the NSA in their own rights. “For years, the three whistle-blowers had told anyone who would listen that the NSA collects huge swaths of communications data from U.S. citizens,” the newspaper reports. “They had spent decades in the top ranks of the agency, designing and managing the very data collection systems they say have been turned against Americans. When they became convinced that fundamental constitutional rights were being violated, they complained first to their superiors, then to federal investigators, congressional oversight committees and, finally, to the news media.”
Sen. James Inhofe, a Republican from Oklahoma, argued that there is no comparison between Hurricane Sandy relief, which he voted against last fall, and aid for his state in the wake of Monday’s devastating tornado because the two are “totally different.”