Forced Abortions & Sterilizations in Massachusetts?

Occasionally, I read or hear about something so stunning that I feel like I’m having an out-of-body experience, watching from a detached vantage point as the world unfurls strangely in front of me. Yesterday afternoon, I had one of those experiences. I was at work, pausing to check the headlines, weather and traffic, when I saw the surreal headline: “Massachusetts Appeals Court rules that judge was wrong to order mentally ill woman to have an abortion and to then be sterilized”. Forced abortions and sterilizations in Massachusetts? Granted, the court-ord...

On a Nationalized American Religious Disposition

I don’t take many calls that come in from 800- or similar area codes, but I took one this morning, because I am expecting a call-back from HP regarding a warranty replacement hard drive for Ezra, my Windows 7 desktop computer (which I had prematurely identified last week as suffering from software problems, but which were being caused by a failing hard drive). The call was from an organization looking to add my name to a petition supposedly being submitted somewhere or another as a token of protest against the legal successes of a militant atheist group ...

Scientists who didn’t predict quake are indicted

When I saw this headline, I thought it was a joke – perhaps something from the Onion. Apparently, the story is a few days old, but I just saw it a few minutes ago: Seven scientists and other experts were indicted on manslaughter charges yesterday for allegedly failing to sufficiently warn residents before a devastating earthquake that killed more than 300 people in central Italy in 2009. …. Judge Giuseppe Romano Gargarella ordered the members of the national government’s Great Risks commission, which evaluates potential for natural disasters, to go...

The way things are done now makes us importunate, dependent, and increasingly unfit to govern ourselves

Quote of the Day for Thursday, May 26th, 2011. The always-readable J. E. Dyer, published in the Green Room over at HotAir, on the burgeoning bloat of judicial control over the character and content of America’s social order: When the law is in proper relationship to the people, the scope of the judiciary is very limited, but actually more meaningful to the enterprise of “good government.”  Today, we have a body of law so huge and burdensome that it has started going 15 rounds with itself on a regular basis, and the judiciary acts as a referee on in...

Subjectivism’s Necessary Appeal to Juridical Power

Quote of the Day for Saturday, Nov 20, from Georgia Warnke, in Justice and Interpretation (MIT Press, 1994): MacIntyre insists that the "only rational way in which these disagreements could be resolved would be by means of philosophical enquiry aimed at deciding which out of the conflicting sets of premises, if any, is true."  But within the liberal tradition, not only can individual claims to what the good life is for human beings not be understood or appear as validity claims in the sphere of public discussion; the same restrictions app...