Supreme Court of the United States


George W. Bush official photo.

Image via Wikipedia

Ten years ago today, the United States Supreme Court gave the 2000 Presidential election to George W. Bush.

Hindsight, which is as useless a gift as it appears, tells us that had Florida been allowed to recount all votes cast, Gore would have won. No matter how they conducted the count. He would have been President and today would probably be a very different reality.

At the time, Justice Souter, who wrote the dissenting opinion, chose to couch his dissent in language that brings to mind the horrific 1852 Dred Scott decision. It’s the one that set the country on an irrevocable path to civil war and the capstone on the Founding Fathers pandering in the nation’s formative years.

Some people, even today, felt that Dred Scott was too important a case in the history of civil rights in the U.S. to be compared to the Gore v. Bush decision. But I don’t.

No, they are not equal in terms of moral gravitas, but they are equal in turns of historical tipping points. Dred Scott was the top of the hill the country rolled down into near self-destruction. Gore v. Bush set the stage for the end of the American Dream.

Not democracy. We have never been all that great an example of representative democracy. And not even the material and consumption dream, we were heading there anyway – though it might have taken longer than it’s going to now.

No, it’s the end of the illusion that we are all equal. That no matter where we humbly begin, the ladder is ours to climb.

It freed those who rig the game from having to hide that fact, and it has set in motion a slide that we are unlikely to rise above.

Happy Anniversary Gore v. Bush, the gift that is yet to finish giving the American people what they probably deserve anyway.


fetus 10weeks

So here in Alberta the municipal  elections have come and gone.  In my own county of Strathcona and in the city of Fort Saskatchewan there are new mayors.  Both women.  And Calgary, to our south, now has a Muslim mayor, a Harvard grad who lives in his parent’s basement.

We are indeed the liberal utopia sometimes.  Aside from the long waits at the walk in clinic, the pig shit smell from basically unregulated mega-hog farms and the kow-towing to big oil. Little things really, “n’est-ce pas?”

But even with its imperfections Canada/Alberta rarely make me cringe in horror the way politics from down under does, and it makes the American mid-term election in a couple of weeks so much harder for my ex-pat self to stomach.

We bask in the light.

While they get ready for The Handmaid’s Tale.

What I don’t understand is how an ad that is more lie than fact gets aired, or what kind of mental defect a person must have to believe that granting legal status to fertilized eggs and embryos is a good idea.

Cue the goose-stepping pregnancy police, and get ready to smuggle birth control pills across state lines because the madness isn’t contained to Colorado. Nebraska is hell-bent on stripping women of their right to reproductive control as well. And I believe Montana is hatching up some personhood scheme along with a doubt-digit handful of other states.

Why? Because they’ve run out of other options. Unless they can somehow upend Roe v. Wade – not impossible but clearly too much work with Obama stacking the court with women – personhood is their last stand.

There isn’t a scientist or doctor worth his/her degree who agrees with the insane notion that life – people life – begins at conception. Not one. Not a shred of credible science to back it up. It’s all based on notions of God and soul, a realm that invites multiple interpretations as a matter of course with nary a hint of agreement anywhere unless it’s the Supreme Court giving the nod to the idea that businesses are a notch above the unborn in the eyes of the law.

And this is so not about saving babies. That’s the ruse. It’s about controlling women. Stripping of us rights and autonomy. Period.

How this is any different from the “socialism” people quake in their slippers about while huddled around the flat screen cheering on Hannity, I don’t know.

Clearly infringing on the rights of women of reproductive age doesn’t bother anyone on the right. But so much doesn’t bother them that I wonder if they’d even notice a regime change from “democracy” to “totalitarian state”. Maybe if the news preempted “Glee” or “Dancing with the Stars”.