Patterico's Pontifications


PSA: Michelle Malkin’s Cousin is Still Missing

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 3:52 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

So take a moment, remind yourself of what she looks like and keep your eyes and ears open.  At this point in time she could theoretically be anywhere.

From Malkin’s site:

We have posted Marizela’s missing persons flyer, photos, videos and updates at The tip line number for citizens who may have any information that might aid in the search is 1-855-MARIZEL. Thank you.

And perhaps as you thank your god (by whatever name you call him) tomorrow for the bounty that he has given you, you might also spare a prayer for her safe return.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

The Pictures Bring This One to Life

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 12:04 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing. Follow me by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Update: Egg on my face, as I named the wrong judge as the author.  Thanks to rfy for pointing that out.  But I could legitimately say literally the same exact things about Posner as Easterbrook, so its all good.

Update (II): For some reason the link broke.  Fixed now, but if it happens again, go to the Volokh link.  Its worth it.

Via Volokh we get to witness a pretty thorough spanking of a pair of lawyers by Judge Posner Easterbrook of the Seventh Circuit (who is one of the giants of the legal profession generally).  You see, lawyers are required to inform the court as a matter of ethics of any adverse precedent, and in practice there are several things you can do, but the one thing you absolutely shouldn’t do is just ignore the precedent.  Which is what happened in Gonzalez-Servin v. Ford,

In Pastor v. Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire, LLC (decided with and under the name Abad v. Bayer Corp., 563 F.3d 663 (7th Cir. 2009)), we affirmed Judge Barker’s transfer of a similar case to the courts of Argentina under the doctrine of forum non conveniens. The appellants in No. 11-1665 (the plaintiffs in the district court ), the accident case, do not cite Abad in their opening brief, though the district court’s decision in their case was issued in 2011—long after Abad. In their response the defendants cite Abad repeatedly and state accurately that its circumstances were “nearly identical” to those of the present case. Yet in their reply brief the appellants still don’t mention Abad—le t alone try to distinguish it—and we take this to be an implicit concession that the circumstances of that case are indeed “nearly identical” to those of the present case…

When there is apparently dispositive precedent, an appellant may urge its overruling or distinguishing or reserve a challenge to it for a petition for certiorari but may not simply ignore it . We don’t know the thinking that led the appellants’ counsel in these two cases to do that . But we do know that the two sets of cases out of which the appeals arise, involving the blood-products and Bridges tone/Fire stone tire litigations, generated many transfers under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, three of which we affirmed in the two ignored precedents. There are likely to be additional such appeals; maybe appellants think that if they ignore our precedents their appeals will not be assigned to the same panel as decided the cases that established the precedents. Whatever the reason, such advocacy is unacceptable.

And he goes on, and it gets pretty ugly for the counsel involved. But bluntly, nothing really captures the fun of reading it and seeing the pictures that the court chose to attach to the opinion. So please, just go there and read the whole thing.  It’s only 6 pages, and there are pictures.  Glorious, hilarious pictures that must have made the lawyers involved sink in their chairs as they saw them.

Also, let’s give bonus points to Easterbrook Posner for knowing that ostriches didn’t really bury their heads in the sand, even if it is an evocative metaphor.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

Supporting Voter Fraud is Raaaaacist!

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 6:15 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing.  Follow me by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

For years combating voter fraud has been a strangely partisan issue.  For instance, in the recent case of Crawford v. Marion County Election Board (2008) the court noted that “all of the Republicans in the General Assembly voted in favor of [a voter ID law] and the Democrats were unanimous in opposing it.”  In that particular case, Republicans supported the common sense measure of, you know, actually having to produce a photo ID proving you are who you say you are, and Democrats responded by claiming that this was the resurrection of Jim Crow and poll taxes—claims expressed in that case and rejected by the majority.  I always thought myself that if I was a minority I would find these claims fairly insulting.  For instance, take the law in the Crawford decision.  Justice Stevens (who voted to uphold it) summed it up as follows:

Referred to as either the “Voter ID Law” or “SEA 483,” the statute applies to in-person voting at both primary and general elections. The requirement does not apply to absentee ballots submitted by mail, and the statute contains an exception for persons living and voting in a state-licensed facility such as a nursing home…. A voter who is indigent or has a religious objection to being photographed may cast a provisional ballot that will be counted only if she executes an appropriate affidavit before the circuit court clerk within 10 days following the election…. A voter who has photo identification but is unable to present that identification on election day may file a provisional ballot that will be counted if she brings her photo identification to the circuit county clerk’s office within 10 days…. No photo identification is required in order to register to vote, and the State offers free photo identification to qualified voters able to establish their residence and identity.

(Citations omitted.)  Still, despite the state fairly bending over backwards to accommodate people, the official Democrat position was that black people and other minorities were uniquely incapable of complying with these simple requirements.  There was no word on whether Democrats officially thought minorities had more trouble tying their own shoes or using common eating utensils without stabbing themselves in the eyes, but given how insultingly low their estimation was of minorities’ basic functionality as reflected by their challenge to these laws, I wouldn’t put it past them.  Really, these challenges rely on assumptions that frankly sound a little racist to my ears.

And so these same Democrats oppose such measures, believing we should go on the honor system, apparently.  The obvious trade off, when we don’t have such measures, is a greater opportunity for fraud.  And any student of history would be skeptical of the claim that protecting fraud generally is good for minorities.  For instance, the practice of using secret ballots was adopted in the South precisely so that they could cover up the fact that they were throwing out black votes—unless perhaps they voted the “right” way.   After all, the person engaging in voter fraud is not subject to requirements like the equal protection clause or the Twenty Fourth Amendment, so the danger of invidious discrimination entering into the process would seem to be increased, not decreased, when voter fraud occurs.  And, well, if you trust the word of former Alabama Democratic Rep. Artur Davis, that is precisely what has happened:

“What I have seen in my state, in my region, is the the most aggressive practitioners of voter-fraud are local machines who are tied lock, stock and barrel to the special interests in their communities — the landfills, the casino operators — and they’re cooking the [ballot] boxes on election day, they’re manufacturing absentee ballots, they’re voting [in the names of] people named Donald Duck, because they want to control politics and thwart progress,” he told TheDC.

“People who are progressives have no business defending those individuals.”

So there you have it, liberals.  If you support voter fraud, you are a raaaaaaacist!

Yes, of course I am being tongue-in-cheek about it, but here’s the brutal truth.  If you are such a sad sack that you can’t comply with this generous voter ID law, then tough on you.  The rest of us should not have to face even the risk of having our right to vote trampled on because of your inability to comply with such simple requirements.  I believe in being very accommodating to a person’s right to vote, but when it infringes on my rights as a voter, my tolerance ends.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

Sockpuppet Wednesday—The Clean and Fresh Edition!

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 3:36 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

So hey, its Wednesday of Thanksgiving week, which is sort of like a Friday, right?  But don’t worry, I will get you a sockpuppet Friday, too.  So you have a veritable cornucopia of sockpuppet threads!

As usual, you are positively encouraged to engaged in sockpuppetry on this thread. The usual rules apply.

Please be sure to switch back to your regular handle when commenting on other threads. I have made that mistake myself.

And remember, the worst sin you can commit on this thread is not being funny.


And for this week’s Friday Frivolity, it turns out that people will cheat at anything, even really stupid things.  Like for instance, online multiplayer video games.  You get no money from it, you get no girls, you get no fame, but for some reason people want to cheat in it.  So then companies have to ban people for it.  The most recent example of this was for the new game Modern Warfare 3, which is a multiplayer game with a vestigial single player game attached to it, which is now instituting bans on people who cheat in multiplayer.

The funny part, however, is Robert Bowling announcing the rules on the ban.  You can get reported in-game apparently and the ban has to do with a careful balancing of feminine hygiene products.  From his twitter account:

Every ban [is] unique to the level of douchiness of the offense. The greater the douche the greater the length. PermaDouche possible.

Which technically is a mixed metaphor.  I mean first, the douche is the person who cheats, or maybe the cheat itself.  Then it becomes the ban, the cleansing if you will.  There is no word on whether any soft-focus Crisco-cam* commercials showing two women in a pastoral scene discussing how sometimes they just don’t feel fresh will be involved.

Meanwhile IGN gets waaaay too deep into the psychology of the people posting user ratings on Metacritic for Modern Warfare 3.  I don’t find it difficult to understand why people would rate a game as either a 0 or a 10.  I figure they see it almost like just voting if they like it, rather than trying to give a finely calibrated rating, that is all.


* Sometimes when a camera operator wants to obscure details he or she smears a little Crisco on the lens to give it a softening effect.  Certain older figures use it a lot to obscure their wrinkles.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

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