Patterico's Pontifications

9/7/2003

PROP. 54 LOOKING DOOMED: The

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:30 pm

PROP. 54 LOOKING DOOMED: The Dog Trainer reports: Prop. 54 Sponsor Concedes Passage Is Now Unlikely:

Ward Connerly all but conceded defeat Saturday on Proposition 54, his ballot measure to restrict the government collection of racial and ethnic data, after Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante said he would spend nearly $4 million to defeat it.

That’s right: it’s purely a question of money. Bustamante has it, and Connerly doesn’t — so it will lose. Don’t hold your breath waiting for liberals — who decried the entire recall election as a charade financed by a multi-millionaire, and who support the campaign finance legislation discussed in the post below — to criticize the fact that this proposition will be voted down just because a lot of money is being spent to defeat it.

There are decent arguments both for and against the proposition, but none of that matters anymore. Proponents will be outspent. End of story.

KENNEDY GETS HIS MARCHING ORDERS:

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:16 pm

KENNEDY GETS HIS MARCHING ORDERS: The McCain-Feingold case is coming to a U.S. Supreme Court near you, and the New York Times is issuing marching orders via editorial to the one Justice who can be counted on to do whatever the paper tells him to do: Anthony Kennedy. (Kennedy is on record as caring very much what the editorial writers at the Times say about him.)

We can only hope that the rest of the Court can see the obvious: the First Amendment is incompatible with this sort of legislation.

Let me make this as clear as I can. If I want to run an ad saying George Bush (or, if I am clinically insane, Howard Dean) is the greatest thing to happen to the world since sliced bread, there is this thing called the First Amendment that says I can do that. If I want to spread that message on full-page ads in every newspaper in the United States, I can do that, no matter the cost. I don’t think any of this is subject to debate.

Now, let’s say I want to call up Karl Rove and ask him, what do you think makes George Bush the greatest thing since sliced bread? Rove tells me a couple of things, and by golly, I’m convinced! Rove really makes some good points! So I say those things in my multi-million dollar ad. Now you’re telling me the government can prevent me from doing this? I can’t express my own deeply held opinion on a political matter because I arrived at that opinion after speaking to Karl Rove? That way lies madness. The First Amendment cannot logically be interpreted this way. (I know it already has been, but I think the decision is wrong.)

The concept is no different when it comes to “issue ads” — even issue ads that the New York Times deems to be “bogus.” Hello! It is not government’s job to decide whether an ad is “bogus” or not!

Here is my editorial to the Court: if you care what Patterico thinks — and I know some of you do — save us from this law!

EXTRA! EXTRA! RUTTEN MAKES SENSE:

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:05 pm

EXTRA! EXTRA! RUTTEN MAKES SENSE: For those of you who still want to argue that the MEChA link to Mr. N-Word is a non-issue, read this piece by Tim Rutten, of all people. Rutten is a guy who (as I mentioned a couple of weeks ago) thinks “liberal Hollywood” is a “myth.” Yet he thinks that the MEChA/Bustamante link is a real issue, that is being ignored by the media:

There are few rules in life that admit no exceptions. Here is one: The pursuit of identity politics ends in an intellectual swamp that inevitably drains into a moral sewer.

That’s why Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante is wrong not to speak more clearly to the issues raised by his one-time membership in a Chicano student organization whose founding credo is a mind-numbing amalgam of quaint revolutionary rhetoric and pseudo-mystical racialism. It’s also why the mainstream media’s off-handed treatment of this issue is one of the avoidable shortcomings in their coverage of the recall campaign.

Read the whole thing. If even Rutten thinks that the media is underplaying this story, then the media is clearly underplaying this story.

The Washington Post has this

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:57 am

The Washington Post has this discouraging but must-read story about homeland security.

MORE CATCHING UP: In early

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:45 am

MORE CATCHING UP: In early August I told you about a carjacking defendant — released by some local judges because they refused to keep the courts open past 4:30 — who is a suspect in a murder committed after his release. A few days ago, they caught the guy in Arizona. Read the quote below about his capture, and see if you find anything interesting about it. I’ll give you a hint by bolding the parts I found interesting.

Patrick was taken into custody Sunday afternoon after his vehicle was stopped because of expired registration.

When Officer Louie Davila of the Arizona Department of Public Safety began to check Patrick’s identity, the fugitive took off on foot.

“The chase lasted about 10 minutes. They ran for about a quarter-mile before Patrick was captured,” said Steve Volden, a Department of Public Safety spokesman.

I read this and got to thinking: what if this murder suspect had been stopped for expired registration in Los Angeles, and had fled in his car rather than on foot? The answer is, he’d still be at large.

As I told you recently, LAPD has recently changed its policy on police pursuits. If you are stopped for an infraction — like, say, expired registration — you can run and the cops can’t chase you. As I said in my prescient earlier post: “Murder suspects are often arrested because they flee after a routine traffic infraction.”

The next time you get that warm and fuzzy feeling inside about the LAPD pursuit policy, remember Jerrell Patrick, and be glad that he fled police on foot in Arizona, rather than in his car in Los Angeles.


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