Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Here's a First

I agree with Mike Huckabee:

"As easy as it is for those of us who are white to look back and say 'That's a terrible statement!' ... I grew up in a very segregated South. And I think that you have to cut some slack — and I'm gonna be probably the only conservative in America who's gonna say something like this, but I'm just tellin' you — we've gotta cut some slack to people who grew up being called names..."
Via Daily Dish.

Obama's Speech on Race

I still haven't made my mind up on Obama head's up against McCain. His foreign policy is immeasurably better than McCain's, but I fear what a Democrat may do to domestic policy and the Supreme Court.

One of the major criticisms of Obama is his lack of experience -- which I happen to like, truth be told. I think the Executive Branch could handle some weakening, given the current administration's vast expansion of power. It is very possible that President Obama would be unable to get meaningful legislation through the Congress -- even a solidly Democratic one, which any potential president is likely to inherit -- because of political infighting and schisms that have plagued the Dems for years. (As far as the government is concerned, the less they get done=the less damage they do.) Even a man as gifted as Obama is cannot solely depend on his popularity throughout his presidency.

But, man, can this brother speechify:

I've seen the speech. I like it. For someone like me, (i.e., bi-racial/black), there was nothing new in what he said. What makes the speech compelling, however, is the overwhelmingly positive reception it has received. Many people have been saying these things for years, but no one was listening.

It remains to be seen how many--and to what extent-- people will actually take what he said to heart. But it was good to hear.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

D.C. v. Heller

My first reaction listening to the oral arguments in the gun ban case is surprise. I am completely taken aback by the lack of focus on the part of Walter Dellinger, counsel for the District -- it was as if he didn't buy his own arguments.

When I listened to the oral arguments of the Boumediene case, I was certainly against the position of Solicitor General Paul Clement -- but he more than competently presented his position. Dellinger, on the other hand, seemed almost amateurish in his delivery, and certainly was not the impassioned advocate that Alan Gura was for Heller.

That said, it seems clear that Heller will be victorious on at least the most basic level. The problem will be how Roberts (I can only assume he will write the opinion, but it seems likely) tailors the exceptions. The Chief Justice has been an incrementalist and will probably not be as sweeping as, say, Scalia would be. So, we'll see where he draws the line and go from there.

Oral Argument audio can be found here (scroll down). Transcript here.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Today is the one day a year I really miss my old job at the Irish Lion in Bloomington, Indiana. As authentic an Irish pub as you can find in Indiana, all apologies to Flanagan's in Fort Wayne and the Claddaugh in Indianapolis, it was a great place to work -- especially on St. Pat's.

So, enjoy the holiday. Be safe.