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Posts posted by Leo

  1. Just today got around to buying Tiny Cities vinyl. (Underground Sounds in Ann Arbor. Thought maybe I'd run into Obama. Ran into Tweedy there a few years ago)

    Just now listening to his gorgeous version of Space Travel Is Boring, when I came across this thread.

    April has really grown on me.

    Look forward to the new release.

  2. Is he supposed to be impartial with respect to his own decisions?

    There's a reason Lady Justice wears a blindfold and not a chearleader's outfit.

    Yes, he should be impartial with respect to his own decisions. A judge/justice should not personalize his/her rulings. Rulings should be based upon findings of fact and matters of law, not personal preference. When Alito reacted, he clearly showed it was personal.

  3. if it's so abundantly clear that the Supreme Court's decision was purely political--as opposed to a decision based upon interpretation of constitutional law--please tell me (or offer a list of) which candidates and/or sitting politicians benefit directly from the ruling.



    Well, obviously this decision allows corporations with mammoth funds to, without limit, promote candidates who favor their business interests and promote defeat of those who do not. Those candidates who typically favor the interests of big corporations, such as oil, banks, and health insurance are . . . Reeeepublicans. So, Republicans would benefit directly from this ruling. This would apply not only to the largest and wealthiest corporations, but also to those with more localized, modest interests.


    That is the simple answer to your question. But, that is not necessarily why I characterize this as a political decision. For me, the decision is politically driven more as a result of the process by which it was made than the impact it will ultimately render.


    This decision was issued by a majority that has, despite proclamations of judicial restraint, taken an activist approach to overturning any consumer rights cases in its path. They have had an agenda. And their agenda has outweighed any adherence to judicial restraint or reluctance to overrule settled precedent. Having an agenda eliminates any presence of impartiality. Without impartiality, the court becomes political.


    Take for example, the decision of Citizens United v Federal Election Commission! Before the court was the issue of whether the McCain-Feingold Act could bar the broadcast of a politically driven documentary about a presidential candidate by cable companies on an on-demand basis. Rather than rule on the narrow grounds presented and hold that the on-demand broadcasts were not susceptible to the Act, or that documentaries were not addressed by the Act, this court, two months after hearing the initial arguments, took the unnecessary step of expanding the issues and ordered the parties to brief whether the court should overrule the Austin and McConnell cases. Cases that really had nothing to do with whether the documentary fell under the cited act; but cases restricting corporations from funding campaigns outside the use of allowed Political Action Committees. Apparently, the promotion of corporate interests by funding candidates through PACs was not enough for this court. It has an agenda and took this opportunity to further its agenda rather than adhere to its pose of judicial restraint. Thus, the court took a political approach in its review of the case.


    And, to further this view, Alito, by engaging in theatrics when Obama voiced his objections to the decision, waived any hint of impartiality and became defensive, showing it was personal and, as such, political.

  4. Someone please explain to me why it's ok and commonplace for a president during the SOTU address to make disapproving statements about the opposing party's congressional acts/policies, but it is controversial and not ok to say anything disapproving about the Supreme Court's decisions?



    The legislative branch is not above reproach. Why should the judicial branch be?

    Especially when, based on a justice's reaction, it's clear the decision is political.

    And, why did we not hear from those now offended by Obama's disapproving statements when Reagan and the two Bushes railed against and denigrated Roe v Wade?

  5. I disagree with the Court's ruling, but calling Alito out on his head shake and mouthing the words "not true" is ridiculous.

    He doesn't agree with what the President said and that's pretty much it. By calling Alito out pretty much negates the whole premise of Obama's speech last night. It is a sideshow because some "pundit" created it.

    Alito's reaction to being called out by Obama is objectionable for the mere fact that the Supreme Court has to be above politics. Supreme Court decisions should not be influenced by politics. Alito reacting to the address and criticism showed me (again - Bush/Gore) that this particular bench is not above politics and, in fact, the recent decision is completely politically based. Sad.

  6. Poon is right. Corporations have been people (so to speak) for a long time. That's not the issue here.

    True. They were first treated as "persons" under a tax case out of California in the 1800s which, I guess, led to their being codified as such at a later time.

    I don't think, until now, their consideration as "persons" has been used to justify granting them 1st Amendment rights allowing them to advance their self-interests through unlimited funding of political campaigns/issues (albeit indirectly) so that, in the end, they will have a more direct effect on the process than actual persons/citizens.

  7. I say we round up all the lobbyists and put them in internment camps for a few years.

    Until Halliburton, or some other like-minded corporation (since they now are seen as persons, corporations will be attributed with minds), demands that the politicians they paid (placed) into office enact legislation establishing internment camps as morally necessary and begin locking the rest of us up.

  8. Two recent releases that sound incredible on vinyl are Jim O'Rourke's The Visitor, and Califone's All My Friends Are Funeral Singers. The depth of sound on the records really comes through on vinyl.


    I believe that it is best to match components with components of similar quality. The idea that speakers are more important than turntables, or amps are more important than speakers, is not sound. Each is dependent on the other. The component of lesser quality is going to bring the other components down to its level. Speakers are only going to reproduce the sound fed to them. If it comes from thin, light power, the sound reproduced will be, well, thin and light, no matter how good the speakers.

    The turntable is only going to be as good as the cartridge used to pick up the sound in the first place. If I have a $500 turntable, I am going to put a $500 or so cartridge on it. Otherwise, the initial $500 is wasted.


    I love vinyl not only for the superior sound, but for the ability to continually play with and tweak the sound by changing up the system used. Unfortunately, it can get expensive.

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