The Jury Talks Back

1/6/2009

Oh Canada, that place without free speech

Filed under: Uncategorized — Scott Jacobs @ 1:15 pm

Eric Blair tips us off in a comment on that “other” site to an fine example of the freedoms one can enjoy in Canada.

Or not enjoy, as the case may be.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees in Ontario, the largest labor union representing staff members at the province’s universities, plans to introduce a resolution at its conference next month to ban Israeli academics from teaching, speaking, or doing research at Ontario universities if they do not first condemn Israeli actions in Gaza.

Wow.  Really, Canada?

As Mark Steyn could tell you, freedom of speech is at best a dubious concept in – as a former instructor of mine called it – North Montana.  However, this is really is worse.

Universities – the place where one most wants and needs a diverse cross section of viewpoints – are becoming a place where a man (or woman) may well have to denounce their home in order to retain employment.  This is the very essence of “Compelled Speech”, and is the most vulgar of displays of self-righteous ass-hattery I’ve seen lately…

And I live in Illinois, and was awake during the last two-year presidential campaign.

The crowning jewel that proves that these people have utterly lost their shit?

The union’s president, Sid Ryan, accused Israel of deliberately making the university a target, and he compared the attack to actions of the Nazis.

Note: I should point out that the title of this post is funnier if you sing it to the tune of Canada’s national anthem.  :)

Sen. Lieberman on the Constitution

Filed under: Uncategorized — aphrael @ 10:51 am

According to Senator Lieberman, speaking on the floor of the Senate this morning, Congress has the Constitutional authority to grant voting rights in Congress to representatives from the District of Columbia.

The source of that authority?

Article 1, Section 8, clause 17:

To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings.

It’s not clear to me how the power to exercise exclusive legislation over the District gives Congress the authority to override Article 1 Section 2 (“The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States” or Article 3 Section 1 (“The Senators of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State).

I agree with the policy decision that people living in the District should have representation in Congress, and I think the fact that there are hundreds of thousands of people living within the United States who have no such representation is a violation of the nation’s fundamental political values. But the remedy lies in changing the Constitution, as was done with the 23d Amendment, rather than twisting the Congress’ power to legislate for the District in ways which were clearly not intended by.


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