I pop in here on occasion and weigh in on a variety of topics weighty, fluffy, and weird. And boy howdy (seriously old reference) do we have a lot of weighty shit going down.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last week that the Defense Of Marriage Act was unconstitutional. As I understand it the ruling means that any parties in state recognized same sex marriages would finally enjoy the federal benefits and tax advantages of any other married couple. Chortle to yourself thinking of all the religious conservatives howling over someone paying less in taxes. Anyway Andrew WK put it far better than I:
If you don't believe in gay marriage, then don't marry a gay person. Otherwise, just keep partying and let everyone else keep partying too.
Andrew WK is an underrated voice of wisdom.
Also the SCOTUS punted California's Prop 8 back to Sacramento killing it would seem that state's ban on same sex marriage. The San Jose Mercury News can explain. My takeaway is that the waters may still be a bit muddied. Wednesday certainly held two wins for equal rights, but it's a long road ahead.
I found myself wishing the Supreme Court was in a better mood Wednesday and they would revisit the fire hose of legal excrement emanating from their robes Tuesday. I won't lie, I was hardly surprised at the 5-4 vote gutting a key provision of the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965. Nine states covered by section 4 of the VRA would no longer have to "pre clear" changes pertaining to voting with the Feds. Texas Republicans waited just long enough to spray Shout on their bar b que sauce stains before getting out the map and beginning anew the redrawing of congressional districts they were stopped from redrawing by.... wait for it.... The Voting Rights Act Of 1965. Ironically this legislation was originally signed in 1965 by a Texas Good 'Ol Boy named Lyndon Baines Johnson. Guess they showed that S.O.B. right! The SCOTUS ruled with a firm scold from Chief Justice Roberts that Congress really ought to take the hint and pass a new law that would.... oh hell I don't know. For what this is all really about I direct you to Greg Palast. He's fidora sporting, wine swilling muckraker who bothers to delve into such things. What he's unearthed the past decade and a half will make you sick. Do it anyway. Democracy is counting on you.
I'm not going to comment much on the NSA case. (Hey NSA how's it going. I hope you enjoy reading this as I type it.) I said most of what I wanted to the last time around. I will add that this whole debate has taken a predictable turn. Edward Snowden is now the story and not the fact that your U.S. government, every second of every day, is violating the U.S. Constitution. But hey the fact that I haven't been blown up by a terrorists proves it's all for a good cause right? Anyway the media for the most part is doing an abysmal job covering the story.
I'll also add this whistle blowing that passed mostly without comment. Is this guy nuts? Is he full of shit? How the hell would I know. I will add that J. Edgar Hoover kept his job for decades by carefully collecting dirt on those who would do him harm. It ain't as far off the reservation as you think.
Closer to home Ohio Republicans buried a bunch of anti choice stink bombs into the Ohio budget this week. In Ohio we have the line item veto which means Governor Kasich can take a sharpie and remove this crap should he choose. His is a punishing choice however. Sign off and give Democrats a gift wrapped hot button issue or use the line item and be hung drawn and quartered by the loony right. Good luck with that.
Update. Kasich signed the budget with the anti choice provisions preserved. He left the signing ceremony without taking any questions. Sooner or later he's going to have to answer. Perhaps it'll be in November of 2014.
Meanwhile Dayton State Senator Nina Turner fired the first troll with SB 307 which would require men to go through all manner of humiliation for access to Viagra. You asked for it boys here it is.
Meanwhile the Jackets drafted some guys. The brain trust seems to know what they're doing, and I am hardly an expert. I'm sure they're fine players. Can't wait for the new season!
In Rio Brazil beat Spain 3-0 in the Confederations Cup Final Sunday. Two thoughts. 1. Spain looked sluggish, not only against Brazil, but also in the semi versus Italy. 2. Brazil's Neymar will be the talked about player next summer in the 2014 Cup. This kid is something else:
The finish is amazing, but the devil here is in the details. He made a smart cut back pass, made his run, realized he was offside, quickly corrected, and then blasted the ball into the back of the net near post. World class!
So Aaron Hernandez is fucked right. You already know all about it if you're interested. He's been charged with murder. He may be tied to two other killings a year ago. ESPN actually spent time this week pondering the Patriots' cap hit. That said if you have him in your keeper league you should probably cut him... Unless your fantasy players come from this league:
As a Buckeye fan you can't be shocked that the NCAA gave Oregon the wink wink nudge nudge last week. It is true that if Chip Kelly ever wants to not make millions coaching in the NFL he'll have to beg for the right to do so. No one is saying this, but I'll say it. To understand Oregon's light treatment you need only look at their corporate benefactor. A recent Sports Illustrated piece on the botched Miami investigation will shed for you light on the impotence and absurdity of the NCAA. They must be destroyed and the sooner the better. Pay the players and pay them now. You are a business start acting like it.
And Finally Tonight
Rather than my usual weird story I direct you instead to remember 19 elite Arizona firefighters who lost their lives this weekend. We don't know yet exactly what happened, but suffice to say even in the best of conditions their jobs are extraordinary difficult. My thoughts and prayers to the families.