Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Baby Boomers Should Know Better. The Free Speech Movement

 Of the late 1960s was not about some radical, absolutist interpretation of free speech as a right.  It was about college students fighting bans on political activities on campus, and protesting a war, and protesting racism, sexism.

It was regular people challenging institutions.  It was not about everyone being able to talk about anything they want, anywhere, anytime.  The First Amendment is a rather limited thing regarding speech.  And those kids back in the 60s were fighting institutional if not government limits on their political speech.  And that is the kind that is most protected under the First Amendment.  

Some retired baby boomer, Constitutional Law professor, should know that much at least.

Ann Althouse.

I'm ten or so years younger than her and I remember the real movements were the Anti War, Feminist, and Civil Rights movements.  And the talk about free speech was tied to and in service of all that.

Edit to add:

"It's interesting how much free speech the opponents of free of speech already have."  -- Ann Althouse.

"If you are trying to make a case that anyone needs more "free speech,"   you have not met your burdens of pleading, proof, or persuasion.  You fail on all counts."  --  Me.

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Saturday, April 23, 2022

Glenn Loury thinks there used to be systemic racism. But not no 'mo!

 And he thinks and says the people who disagree with him are the idiots.

Ok.  I fell off the wagon, and started watching his latest vid.  Mainly because, he wasn't chatting with McWhorter, or some out of the closet conservative.  And because in the first section, the topic was what did he think of his role as a "public intellectual?" Now recently, I have added to my list of pet peeves, how there are so few genuine intellectuals out there, but instead how we are drowning in pseudos.  Now to be fair to the Professor.  He is an academic and scholar, and a Doctor of Econ. And he is an author.  But the mere fact he can have opinions about a lot of issues, and can comment on a lot of issues, doesn't make him an intellectual.  Here is where I can remake my drunk uncle at the bar, reference.  I am not saying Loury has no more insight than an uneducated oaf on his third beer at the local bar.  But I am saying drunk uncle at the bar can have opinions about a lot of issues, and can comment on a lot of issues.  Ain't anything special about that!

Now I am going to actually google the def., but I am thinking about one of the key terms in Patent Law;  novelty.  I think in order to be a genuine intellectual, there has to be some novelty, at least in point of view, way of approaching an issue, if not coming up with new answers to social problems. 

Here is a legitimate def. from  


Hmmm,  Loury has education and skill, but . . . he drifts to emotion over the rational, way too much.  In the vid I watched just some of, before writing this?  He fought back on his counterpart's take on affirmative action, however, admitting the plausibility of that.  She well articulated the idea that maybe we need to do affirmative action now for a while, so we don't have to in the future.  But he essentially rejected it based on his feelings.  He shifted to his usual right wing conservative dogma, like I say above, denying the continuation of systemic racism.  And that is one of the least intellectual things to do;  to deny the actual existence of the problem, or the sub issue, and go on some ignorant, repetitive, dogmatic rant, regurgitating the party dogma, without the tiniest bit of reference to any facts, evidence, or reality based reference.  Anti intellectualism at its finest, or worst, depending on which side of the mirror you prefer.

I stopped watching after that embarrassing, yet for him, predictable  . . .  what is my new way of dismissing lunatic right wing dogma?  Oh yea.  Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit, of a rant.   But let me take another look at the list of sub topics. 

 I have heard that Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit, of a rant before. I have previously called his, that rant as little more than recycled Booker T. Washington, self reliance ideology.  But with Loury it is more vicious, more judgmental, more conservative, more ugly.  And he likely wonders why the majority of black folk who are not already bougie who hear his opinions, want him to fuck off?  Hell.  I am bougie, and I am a lawyer, and I want him to shut the fuck up with that conservative, Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit.  

Edit to add:

Since I did post a  link, I felt obligated to watch more.  Now his usual Booker T. Washington, self reliance ideology is  there  in his rant, underlying it.  But he gets more emotional.  And I am not a psychologist.  But I will just say something about his emotional state.  WTF??

But his contempt for what he calls his people  is burning brighter than ever before.  So to that I say as well.  WTF??

Oh, and I watched/listened to the whole thing.  Eventually. His guest, Stephanie Lepp is a revelation.  She definitely is not a conservative (socially.)    She self describes as an adherent of promiscuous pragmatic pluralism.  I don't want to short her "presence" or being.  She is what I would call a very cool chick, if I were describing her.  And she comes out of the arts, and is very open minded about many things.  And one of the best moments is when she introduces Glenn to the idea that evolution is beautiful, but not pretty. That it can get messy sometimes. That reminds me of one of my favorite lines, from a Dune book, one of the latter ones actually written by Frank Hebert.  and the line is definitely not original, but timeless.  "Real boats rock."  I am sure she would get my meaning.

Anyway, it was fun to see/hear her basically refute, torch, pulverize, hydrogen bomb, the lie that is at the center of conservatism.  People and society evolve.  You can fight it, but it will happen.  Glenn tried as feebly as he could to to resist the reality of what she was saying, trying to dismiss that kind of talk as relativism, and promoting the conservative lie (in most cases) about ultimate rightness of things.  She basically put him in his place with saying, well ya. Some things are just flat out bad, wrong, and not worth keeping as we evolve, like slavery.  But her argument was that there were a few such absolutes.  But look around the world.  There are many way for societies to do stuff.  

I think he could have gone longer with what I have been calling Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit. But he really got what she was saying, I think.  And they were running out of time.   I know I flame him a lot, but there still is a functioning, rational being in his skin.  I expect him to revert back to usual form.  But these rare moments of seeing things clearly are why I take a break form his shit, but come back to see if he has anything useful to say.  Or admit.

I confess I am way too fond of my new pet, my line about how conservative dogma is just Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit.  But rest assured.  I will come up with another way of criticizing the forces of evil.  I always do.

Anyway.  Loury is still working on his memoirs.  I am way behind on books written by people I respect, so I expect the best I can do for him when that comes out, is to read a review.

Oh.  One last thought re respect.   I would have respected him if he rejected the status of being a public intellectual.  I think that shit is like being a patriot, or righteous and pious.  Anyone who thinks they are, usually isn't.

I might not be an educator, but I grade hard!

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Wednesday, April 20, 2022

How do I credit Althouse here?

 There is this current story about how some intolerant, bigoted, evil, bozo loving, Q Anon following, claims to have been there for the putsch on 1/6/21, internet troll-bitch had her anonymity stripped by some real (digital beat) journalist.  As expected, the other intolerant, bigoted, evil, bozo loving, Q Anon following internet troll-bitches are crying foul.  As journalists are not supposed to do that, tell the facts, and shit.  In what world?  Their group psychosis driven one!

I will credit Althouse for the post about this substack piece that to my mind well describes the game these right wing trolls are up to.  I consider Althouse to be a sort of troll herself.  

She is also high on the list of people I believe need to ask themselves:   

"Is it possible you are not even half as well informed as you believe, and as well not even half as intelligent?"

I am telling myself not to even peek at the "Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit."   that is the usual "gross" output of her trollish minions, in the comments section.  I am really trying to cut down on shit that is likely to hurt my pretty brain.  But if you are interested in an essay  (she calls it a rant) about how the GOP/Nazis are basically at war with the traditional press, and are promoting an all bullshit, all the time policy?  Then give this essay a read, I suggest.

PS. I read something quoting FL Gov. Ron DeSantis aping bozo, at least with a broad trollish remark about the traditional press, today.  We know this has been the game for a while.  It pre dates bozo, but it is more the norm for these rachet creatures than ever before.

They Know How Journalism Works! They’re Just Against It!

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Saturday, April 16, 2022

Don't take it personally, bitches.

 I am getting increasingly tired of other motherfuckers sharing of their opinions.  My long time joke has been:

"The internet.  Where people who don't know what the fuck they are talking about go, and prove it."

And lately I am thinking about all the pseudo intellectuals.  Between YouTube vids and similar vloggy shit?  The internet is lousy with pseudos.  I mean you John McWhorter, and Glenn Loury.  And your little dog too.  Coleman.

Granted.  I can barely stand podcasts.  And the quality of the average opinion writing is like Mardi Gras vomit, mixed with pig shit.   My description.  So it should surprise no one that my thought of the day is if I ever meet any internet pseudo, I will try not to directly insult them.  But I will want to ask them a rhetorical question:

"Is it possible you are not even half as well informed as you believe, and as well not even half as intelligent?"

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Thursday, April 14, 2022

Bonhoeffer‘s Theory of Stupidity

From the comments:

"The most important insight in this vid is that stupidity is essentially a moral failing more than an intellectual one."

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Friday, April 01, 2022

I am not going to accuse the three white lady judges of being racists. . .

Because even if under prior case law in Ohio, that is not prima facie defamation as a solid matter of law, the three white lady judges who sat on the panel who refused to over turn the trial verdict in the Oberlin case?  They decided it is.  Sorta.

I did skim the opinion last night, to double check the handling of the whole does an accusation of racism = defamation question?   And the opinion (just checked it again,) really avoided that critical and specific part.  They just say the finding of the lower court was correct, with out dealing with the critical matter.  They note in the opinion:  

"To determine whether an alleged defamatory statement is fact or opinion, we examine four factors: the specific language used, whether the statement is verifiable, the general context of the statement, and the broader context in which the statement appeared."

But they fail to show how the accusations are in fact defamatory.  They quote "The specific language used," but are virtually silent on the matter of why the accusations of 'racist' could be considered, as a matter of law, as defamatory.  Re fucking ipsa loquitur does not fucking apply here!

This matters because last night I looked up the critical question and yes.  There is caselaw in Ohio that says being called a racist is not defamation. As a rule.

Ahhhh. But here is the tricksy bit.  I missed this in the trial court opinion,  but the appeals court judges rest their finding of a valid determination of defamation per se on this shit:

"The trial court found that allegations of an assault, if untrue, were defamatory per se and Oberlin has not raised a timely or proper challenge to that ruling by the trial court.3"

That clearly was error at the trial court  and by the appeals court.  

From some Ohio law firm's website. 

In Ohio, a statement may be considered ‘per se’ if it falls that constitute defamation within one of four categories:

  • A statement that accuses the victim of an indictable offense involving moral turpitude or infamous punishment,
  • A statement implying the victim has an offensive or contagious disease meant to isolate or ostracize the victim,
  • Words that injure a person in their trade or occupation, or
  • Statements that subject the victim to public hatred, ridicule, or contempt.

Being accused of (unspecified) assault does not seem to meet the requirements for defamatory per se.   That last category, the only one that gets them within striking distance of legitimacy, is really vague.  And being accused of assault does not rise to most people's idea of subject to public hatred, and shit, because just like accusations of being a racist are so common to be meaningless?  And some people brag about the accusation?  People brag about kicking ass and shit, all the time, and other people, for what ever allegiance or other reasons, will cheer them on, or after the fact.

In all honesty, the caselaw in Ohio is so fucked up and vague this case should be taken up by the Ohio Supreme Court just to create some bright lines.  The caselaw says the matter of whether a statement is mere defamation or a per se case is a "matter of law"  but they allow for  too much reading of the tea leaves to be instructive to the people what is or isn't defamation?  I think both the trial court and the appellate court totally fucked upon this part.  Determining:  "the general context of the statement, and the broader context in which the statement appeared."

Some snot nosed college bratz shit talked the local merchants.  The college aided the snot nosed college bratz shit talking the local merchants.  Seems more like the opinion of snot nosed college bratz shit talking the local merchants, than anything that a reasonable person would take seriously, with the exception of snot nosed college bratz and their minders/educators. 

I actually think that even under the vague caselaw of Ohio,  the case should have been dismissed and never gone before a jury.

We will see.

Oh  and I checked. Two of the judges were GOP,  and one not. And all were white ladies. 

Even if  I am right in thinking  OSC needs to set a clear standard  (I don't fucking trust fucking judges much, by default.)  There is a GOP to Dem split of four to three.  And politics will have a lot to do with if it get's docketed, and how shit ends up.  

 There really should be a clear line saying being accused of being a racist is not cause for a defamation case. and that is the politics of it! But it should not be political.  As was said in a Federal court case out of Illinois, back in 1983:

"In daily life "racist" is hurled about so indiscriminately that it is no more than a verbal slap in the face; the target can slap back (as Stevens did). It is not actionable unless it implies the existence of undisclosed, defamatory facts, and Stevens has not relied on any such implication."  Stevens v. Tillman (7th Cir. 1983.)

I argue (got to be carful, even if I have had a general disclaimer here for years and years,)  that what this case was about to start, and still is about is white supremacy and anti work ism and anti cancel culture.  Pure politics of the worst kind.  JMO!

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What The Fuck is In the Water in Ohio?

 I am very surprised the obscene windfall in the case against Oberlin College was not over turned by the appellate court.  But I have been fucked by judges so I can't be that surprised.  However, the amount of public scrutiny paid to this fairly weak claim of defamation seemed to me to insure sanity should prevail, and the jury verdict thrown out.

But I don't know fuck about Ohio politics, in or out of court.  And I just learned today that the stricter form of holding people liable for defamation is more . . .  Liberal.  Funny to say it that way.  But that being clear now explains the ludicrous punitive damages.

I will just say that a defamation claim from  being called a racist won't keep you in court long enough to get past a motion to dismiss in many states.  Won't even get you to a jury trial in most of the rest.  And I don't know of any place other than Ohio that in theory allows for punitive damages.

Soo we are down to two questions.   Will the Ohio Supreme Court elect to hear Oberlin's likely appeal?  And if so will they fix the hole in their case law that doesn't specify and limit what is an attack on character?  More specifically will they find as many other US states have.  That being called a racist is just an insult not a ground for a lawsuit at all never mind punitive damages.

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