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links for 2010-05-21

  • Quote:"let’s give Paul credit for — at least initially — sticking to a philosophy that reflects pure libertarianism. Libertarians believe that the individual rights of property owners are more important than anything else. In a 2002 letter to the editor of a Kentucky newspaper objecting to the Fair Housing Act, he underscored that philosophy:

    Decisions concerning private property and associations should in a free society be unhindered. As a consequence, some associations will discriminate.

    That may sound strange in 2010, but it didn’t in ancient times — way back in 1964. Barry Goldwater gained the Republican nomination for the presidency on just that philosophy.

    // Yes, us ancient fools who believe in the rights of people to be assholes, even if we wish things otherwise.

  • Quote:"Many people might intuitively assume that Southern racism had led to entrenched public segregation long before Southern legislatures made it mandatory. Not so. Separate facilities for blacks and whites were not routine in the South until the early 20th century. Racism there surely was, but as C. Vann Woodward observed in "The Strange Career of Jim Crow," the idea of separating the races in places of public accommodation initially struck many white Southerners as daft. In 1898, the editor of South Carolina's oldest and most conservative newspaper, the Charleston News and Courier, responded to a proposal for segregated railroad cars with what was meant to be scathing ridicule:

    // I think it is clear, the private market did not want segregation. Jim Crow was political manipulation of the democratic system.

  • Quote:"In addition to Jim Crow laws, in which the state compelled segregation of the races, businesses, political parties, unions and other private parties created their own Jim Crow arrangements, barring blacks from buying homes in certain neighborhoods, from shopping or working in certain stores, from working at certain trades, etc. The Supreme Court outlawed some forms of private discrimination in Shelley v. Kraemer 334 US 1 (1948), in which it held that "restrictive covenants" that barred sale of homes to blacks or Jews or Asians were unconstitutional, on the ground that they represented state-sponsored discrimination in that they were only effective if the courts enforced them.

    The Supreme Court was unwilling, however, to attack other forms of private discrimination; it reasoned that private parties did not violate the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution when they discriminated because they were not "state actors" covered by that clause.

    // Wikipedia's take

  • Quote:"The incentives of the economic system and the incentives of the political system were not only different, they clashed. Private owners of streetcar, bus, and railroad companies in the South lobbied against the Jim Crow laws while these laws were being written, challenged them in the courts after the laws were passed, and then dragged their feet in enforcing those laws after they were upheld by the courts.

    These tactics delayed the enforcement of Jim Crow seating laws for years in some places. Then company employees began to be arrested for not enforcing such laws and at least one president of a streetcar company was threatened with jail if he didn't comply.

    // Great article on Jim Crow Laws, read the whole thing and reflect on Rand Paul's position on free association.

  • // "Do you wish the government to abridge your rights to association, assembly, free speech and property?" is how I would answer Maddow. The Civil Rights Act made discrimination illegal, but it didn't get rid of one racist. In fact, I would suggest the Civil Rights Act has gone against the oroginal motive for the civil rights movement. It has produced resentment and discontent. Just look at the way Race is discussed in this country. It's impossible to have any discussion on the topic in a meaningful way.
  • Quote:"Raymond Hosier was sent home for two days over the religious symbol, visible outside his clothing.

    His school district in Schenectady said students are not allowed to wear beads out of concern they may be gang-related. Hosier, however, said they're comforting since the loss of his brother and uncle

    // It's funny, the concern is not "how do we get rid of gangs?" but rather "Can't we ignore the gang problem by banning gang-related stuff, like certain colors"

  • Quote:"Police were called to the 700 block of Mariner Loop after a census worker was confronted by residents who pointed a firearm at the worker and said they would not answer any questions.

    // Just FYI, all government activity is done through the threat of lethal force. While the police weren't threatening people to "answer or die," it must be understood escalations like this are always possible with any government activity.

  • // Brain asplode
  • // Tool helps calculate the probability your marriage will last to X anniversary.
  • Quote:"And yet Paul's view that the federal government should not have the power to force integration on private businesses — part of 1964's landmark Civil Rights Act — didn't get the attention of the national press until Wednesday, following interviews with NPR's Robert Siegel and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow. (

    // Freedom of association having died with the rest of the Constitution, circa 1932.

  • // I'm a little disappointed I wasn't familiar with this secret government facility.
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