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Random Saturday morning thoughts and links

Was thinking this morning — no idea why — about a friend who was once arrested on the absolutely magnificent (and no doubt Victorian) charge of “tending to lead an idle, lewd, and dissolute life.” A kind of catch-all charge, I gather, for underage kids who weren’t actually caught in any specific act, but who were nevertheless up to no good.

A 17-year-old high school senior, he was busted at a college party where drugs figured heavily. Apparently that high-flown charge was originally invented by reformists committed to the belief that minors were salvageable and as yet incapable of actually leading an idle, lewd, and dissolute life.

I can confirm that my friend was already thoroughly immersed in lewdness and dissolution (which eventually killed him) but not idleness. On the contrary, he was a diligent, focused worker who got a full-time job at 18, never left it, and continued to rise in the ranks despite being stoned out of his mind half the time he was on the clock. He bought a house when he’d barely turned 21 and owned lots of toys for his genuinely idle druggie friends to steal while he was at work.

As it happened, the “idle, lewd, and dissolute” charge had to be dropped because cops made the mistake of tossing him into a cell with adults when he was underage. So the Victorians never got a chance to save his tender young self from dissolute ways. Not that they’d have succeeded in any case. Never in my life did I know anybody so determined on slow self-destruction.

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Speaking of being highly functional while on drugs, a new study casts doubts on the arbitrary blood-THC levels pot-legalizing states have chosen for punishing drivers.

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Creepy story: “I am the Watcher.”

No doubt the culprit’s going to turn out to be some obnoxious but otherwise harmless neighbor with a grudge. And with a large collection of Stephen King and Dean Koontz books in his library.

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Forget Obamacare. The real, long-term disaster the Supremes perpetrated this week in King v Burwell was to define their job as being to help incompetents in the other branches grow the government.

Separation of powers. Yeah. Thanks, you Hamiltonian federalists.

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David Codrea has landed at The Truth About Guns. Kind of a surprise. But I hope he’s landed firmly on his feet and found a forum that will allow him to do what he does best — and do well at doing it.

22 Comments

  1. RustyGunner
    RustyGunner June 27, 2015 8:06 am

    Yeah, rule of law and the separation of powers took a torpedo this week. On the bright side, though, the Nazgul may have accidentally mandated nationwide CCW reciprocity, so get your popcorn popper working.

  2. RustyGunner
    RustyGunner June 27, 2015 8:08 am

    And before anyone asks, there are nine of them, they wear black robes, and they owe their positions to evil rulers.

  3. Claire
    Claire June 27, 2015 8:32 am

    🙂 Yes, you won’t be the first to call them the Nazgul hereabouts.

    Hadn’t thought about accidental ccw reciprocity. I presume you mean the gay-marriage ruling? Though I spit on government permits to exercise fundamental rights, I’d laugh if the Sups really gave us reciprocity by accident. Alas, I suspect they’ll find some loophole for getting out of any such implication.

  4. Bear
    Bear June 27, 2015 8:42 am

    SCROTUM has had plenty of time and opportunity (recently, MCDONALD and HELLER come to mind) to figure out that “full faith and credit” should apply to a frickin’ enumerated protected, pre-existing right.

    They didn’t.

    I expect to see wind gennies, solar farms, unicorn farts, and rainbows adequately and efficiently powering the national grid 24/7 before the black-robed freaks do it. ‘Infringed’ is a word of more than one syllable after all. Certainly this band of cross-dressers will not do it. (For exactly the same [lack of]reasoning that they also struck down a point of law that actually was publicly debated and accepted by Congress and the Prez, on the grounds that it conflicted with what Barrycade really wanted.

    The US Constitution was one of those things that — to minarchists and the like — sounds good in principle, but assumes that scumbags without principles will honor it.

    They don’t.

    On the bright side, these two particular rulings have some people questioning things, who hadn’t much bothered doing that before.

  5. Bear
    Bear June 27, 2015 8:45 am

    Claire- ” Alas, I suspect they’ll find some loophole for getting out of any such implication.”

    That would be the “Obama has Roberts’ ball in a safe deposit box” and “we’re appointed for freaking life BWAHAHAHA!” loopholes.

  6. Claire
    Claire June 27, 2015 8:51 am

    So what’s the story on Roberts supposedly being blackmailed, Bear? Got some reliable links?

    I haven’t paid attention to the rumors before now because … well, it doesn’t take blackmail or threats for a “conservative” to get into office and become the biggest of big government enablers. If we were to start counting the number of times that’s happened, we’d still be counting at the heat death of the universe.

  7. Bear
    Bear June 27, 2015 9:19 am

    Here’s a decent summary of the conspiracy theory that was bouncing around the ‘Net for a while. TL;DL: someone thinks his blonde, “Nordic appearing” kids supposedly adopted from an undisclosed Latin American country were actually adopted from Ireland, which forbids such international adoptions.

    I didn’t pay that much attention at the time because… well, it doesn’t take blackmail or threats for a “conservative” to get into office and become the biggest of big government enablers” even though the-mandate-that-Congress-Prez-&-GAO-all-say-isn’t-a-tax-is-a-tax-and-therefore-constitutional was a fairly strange ruling for Roberts given his history. But this Ocare ruling on subsidies is so far out there for anyone who ever saw a newspaper or turned on a TV during the debates and can readthat some sort of blackmail (adoption related or something else) is vying for “serious brain damage or Alzheimers issues” to my way of thinking.

  8. revjen45
    revjen45 June 27, 2015 9:19 am

    “tending to lead and idle, lewd, and dissolute life.” Also known as “mopery on the king’s highway.”

  9. Claire
    Claire June 27, 2015 9:37 am

    Bear — I hear ya on TL;DR. But I did get halfway through, enough to get this gist of the business. Seems wildly farfetched to me.

    I’d go with brain damage. The kind caused by spending too much time in Washington, DC.

  10. Bear
    Bear June 27, 2015 9:46 am

    Alternately, Roberts could be a cryptorevolutionary doing his bit to bring down the government from within. [grin]

  11. KenK
    KenK June 27, 2015 11:39 am

    The “NJ Watcher” story indicatess to me either a real creeper or a brilliant real estate scammer. The creep could end up with a $1.3 house for a bargain price.

  12. Joel
    Joel June 27, 2015 12:50 pm

    Hasn’t it become sort of a tradition for republican presidents to appoint new ‘conservative’ Nazgul who then spend the remainder of their lifetimes making conservatives cry? I’m not an expert on their individual records, but only two consistently conservative SCOTUS judges come to mind. And neither of them is exactly an ‘original-meaning’ constitution cultist when it suits their purpose not to be.

  13. Felinenation
    Felinenation June 27, 2015 1:29 pm

    I read somewhere that Eisenhower, when leaving office, was asked what his biggest mistakes as president were, and his reply was “They’re sitting on the Supreme Court.”

  14. Felinenation
    Felinenation June 27, 2015 1:35 pm

    My response would be to the Watcher: trespassers will be shot, survivors will be shot again. With signs posted to that effect.

  15. Plug Nickel Outfit
    Plug Nickel Outfit June 27, 2015 2:15 pm

    “tending to lead an idle, lewd, and dissolute life.”

    In my time and AO it was a matter of being declared an “incorrigible minor” – so I hear, anyway.

  16. Claire
    Claire June 27, 2015 2:17 pm

    I read somewhere that Eisenhower, when leaving office, was asked what his biggest mistakes as president were, and his reply was “They’re sitting on the Supreme Court.”

    Indeed. The name Earl Warren comes to mind. Good lifelong Republican, that man. Yeahhhh.

    And though Eisenhower didn’t appoint William O. Douglas, Douglas was on the court all through Eisenhower’s presidency. I always sort of liked him. He raised interesting hell. Major civil libertarian and a man of courage. But the Supreme Court Eisenhower had to deal with was a bear of judicial activism. They paved the way for what we have today.

    They were intelligent, though. Scholars. This Roberts dude seems to base his rulings on whether they’ll produce sufficient unicorns and pink bunny rabbits for the government. Reading his opinions is like reading HuffPost editorials, not serious legal pronouncements.

  17. old printer
    old printer June 27, 2015 4:35 pm

    Speaking of not serious legal pronouncements Kennedy’s emotional encomium in the gay marriage decision was anything but judicial. I guess an expansion of the 14th equal protection clause is good no matter the reason. However, this phrase rang so true in a personal sense that it brought tears:
    Marriage responds to the universal fear that a lonely person might call out only to find no one there. It offers the hope of companionship and understanding and assurance that while both still live there will be someone to care for the other.

    The scathing remarks from Scalia, and Roberts no less, that Kennedy made “Fortune Cookie” sayings look erudite, only confirms why the right is losing. The expose themselves as people without souls.

  18. old printer
    old printer June 27, 2015 4:36 pm

    …theyexpose themselves…

  19. Ron Johnson
    Ron Johnson June 28, 2015 5:46 am

    The King vs Burwell case turns on Congress’ intent concerning subsidies. Funny, but I remember clearly that NOBODY in Congress got to read the ACA in its’ final form before they voted to approve it. Remember: “we have to pass it to see what’s in it.”

    The defenders of the ruling are noting that at no time did proponents or detractors from the ACA bill bring up the subject of subsidies, and that therefore proves Congress thought it was a non-issue. Well, the truth is Congress thought reading what they were supporting was a non-issue.

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