Apr 182013

I’m still sick in bed, but today’s other article was just too important not to write..

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 5:07 (average 5:50).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From NY Times: The Supreme Court’s conservatives dealt a major blow Wednesday to the ability of American federal courts to hold violators of international human rights accountable. The court declared that a 1789 law called the Alien Tort Statute does not allow foreigners to sue in American courts to seek redress “for violations of the law of nations occurring outside the United States.”

In the case at issue, Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum, Nigerian citizens alleged that, from 1992 to 1995, multinational oil companies working in Nigeria aided the military dictatorship that tortured and killed protesters who fought the environmental damage caused by the oil operations. These companies did business in the United States. But Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., writing for the majority, said that even where claims of atrocities “touch and concern the territory of the United States, they must do so with sufficient force” to overcome a presumption that the statute does not apply to actions outside this country.

That presumption radically revises and undermines the way the statute has been applied for a generation. It has been limited by the types of human rights abuses it covers — but not by where they take place. The effect is to greatly narrow the statute’s reach…

The vote was 5-4 with the activist fascist five, Roberts, Alito, Scalia, Thomas and Kennedy goose-stepping for international criminal corporations against basic human rights.

From Think Progress: The Tucson, Arizona Police Department held a gun buyback on the anniversary of the 2011 Tucson mass shooting, with the intention of melting down the 200-plus firearms they received. But now the National Rifle Association, which vowed to put a stop to it, appears poised to get its wish. The Arizona Senate approved a measure 18-12 that prevents local municipalities from destroying the firearms, following the House’s action earlier this year.

State Sen. Rick Murphy (R) said gun buybacks “accomplish nothing other than make people feel good,” and the measure is about “protecting taxpayers.” [Reich Wingers delinked] NRA board member and lobbyist Todd Rathner made a similar claim in January that local government must sell seized or abandoned property according to state law…

What next? Will Arizona Republicans require that the weapons be sold to people who cannot pass background checks?

From Raw Story: Minnesota radio host Bob Davis last week said last Friday he would like to personally tell the families in Newtown, Connecticut whose children were murdered to “go to hell.”

On his show Davis & Emmer, which is broadcast by Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130, he attacked the families of those killed in the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School for speaking in support of stricter gun laws.

I bet a buck that this asshole champions Batshit Bachmann! There is only one word to describe such vile lack of decency: Republican!



Folk history seems to have forgotten the latter two.


  6 Responses to “Open Thread–4/18/2013”

  1. Just to be clear, the Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum was actually a unanimous 9-0 opinion.  They all agreed that the case should not go forward:

    All nine justices agreed that the claims by the Nigerian victims went "too far," because the alleged wrongs were committed on foreign territory by a foreign company with no significant presence in the U.S.

    It's just that Justice Breyer wrote a separate Opinion, joined by the other 3 liberal justices, that the ATS (Alien Tort Statute) should reach conduct by corporations overseas that (from his Opinion):

    “Substantially and adversely affects an important American national interest, and that includes a distinct interest in preventing the United States from becoming a safe harbor (free of civil as well as criminal liability) for a torturer or other common enemy of mankind.”

    So while a severe blow to human rights concerns (and not a promising future for the ATS), there still exists  the possibility of some protection – either from a different court or a clearer statute.

  2. Sorry to hear you are still ill, TC.  Awful news with the Supreme Court.  As for 'Bob Davis' – who has ever heard of him – and was that the point of his disgusting behaviour? A petition should be started to sack him in the name of decency!

  3. 3:48 Did I win the Tours de TomCat today?

    I'm back home on my own laptop again. On my way home yesterday, a woman jumped off a bridge in front of my train and killed herself. What a shame!

  4. Puzzle — 5:06  Everything is a blurrrrr today!  It is either the onset of a cold or the effects of amaretto soaked biscuits in my birthday desert from last night!

    NY Times — So, the fascist 5 have said that multinationals that have some of their business in the US cannot be sued in the US for actions that happened outside the US?  So are those same multinationals also paying US income taxes for the privilege of this protection?  Is there no justice in this world?  Are we all to be playthings of the multinationals?

    Think Progress — Could the city opt to keep the weapons as municipal assets until such time that they can be destroyed?  What would happen if they went ahead and melted them down anyway?  The NRA and the gun lobby is just too big for their britches!

    Raw Story — "…he attacked the families of those killed in the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School for speaking in support of stricter gun laws.."

    I guess this ass wad, Bob  Davis, figures that the 1st amendment does not apply to anyone else but himself!?  How totally Republican/Teabagger of him!  And I'm sure that next we'll hear him quoting the Bible in support of his position.

    Cartoon — I wonder what Paul Revere et al would think of the current state of the union?  I wonder if they would see the Republican/Teabaggers and their corporate masters as having replaced the Crown, King Georgie?

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