Alito’s Roe v Wade Draft Has 17th Century Opinions on Rape & Witches

When U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, in a draft opinion obtained and published this week by Politico, detailed his justifications for overturning Roe v. Wade, he invoked a surprising name given the case’s subject. In writing about abortion, a matter inextricably tied to a woman’s control over her body, Alito chose to quote from Sir Matthew Hale, a 17th-century English jurist whose writings and reasonings have caused enduring damage to women for hundreds of years.

The so-called marital rape exemption — the legal notion that a married woman cannot be raped by her husband — traces to Hale. So does a long-used instruction to jurors to be skeptical of reports of rape. So, in a way, do the infamous Salem witch trials, in which women (and some men) were hanged on or near Gallows Hill.

Hale’s influence in the United States has been on the wane since the 1970s, with one state after another abandoning his legal principles on rape. But Alito’s opinion resurrects Hale, a judge who was considered misogynistic even by his era’s notably low standards…Alito, in his draft opinion, invokes “eminent common-law authorities,” including Hale, to show how abortion was viewed historically not as a right, but as a criminal act. “Two treatises by Sir Matthew Hale likewise described abortion of a quick child who died in the womb as a ‘great crime’ and a ‘great misprision,’” Alito wrote.

Alito may as well quote the fictional Simon Legree on the usefulness of slavery – to rely on this sort of anachronistic crap. Unless, of course, he wishes to support some of his peers in the Republican Party who still resent the inclusion of women as equal citizens before the law of these United States.

A nation once again

The Irish nationalist party Sinn Fein, which seeks unification with Ireland, hailed a “new era” Saturday for Northern Ireland as it captured the largest number of seats in the Northern Ireland Assembly for the first time in a historic win.

With almost all votes counted from Thursday’s local U.K. election, Sinn Fein secured 27 of the Assembly’s 90 seats. The Democratic Unionist Party, which has dominated Northern Ireland’s legislature for two decades, captured 24 seats. The victory means Sinn Fein is entitled to the post of first minister in Belfast — a first for an Irish nationalist party since Northern Ireland was founded as a Protestant-majority state in 1921…

The victory is a major milestone for Sinn Fein, which has long been linked to the Irish Republican Army…(Sinn Fein vice-president Michelle) O’Neill stressed that it was imperative for Northern Ireland’s divided politicians to come together next week to form an Executive — the devolved government of Northern Ireland.

There is “space in this state for everyone, all of us together,” O’Neill said. “There is an urgency to restore an Executive and start putting money back in people’s pockets, to start to fix the health service. The people can’t wait.”

One of the worst examples of English Imperialism needs to end sooner rather than later. Too long overdue

In New Mexico, we’re bracing for more of extreme wildfire conditions


Las Vegas, NMRoberto E.Rosales/Albuquerque Journal

With the worst of the thick wildfire smoke having blown out of town, residents of this small northern New Mexico city tried to recapture a sense of normalcy Saturday as their rural neighbors hunkered down amid predictions of extreme fire conditions.

Shops and restaurants reopened, the historic center was no longer just populated by firefighters, but there was a widely felt sense of anxiety, loss, and wariness of what lay ahead…

While the city for now seemed spared of danger, rural areas were still threatened as the fire was driven by winds so fierce all firefighting aircraft had to be grounded. And the worst could be yet to come.

A combination of strong winds, high temperatures and low humidity were forecast by the National Weather Service to create an “exceptionally dangerous and likely historic stretch of critical to extreme fire weather conditions” for several days…

Some 1,400 firefighters worked feverishly to contain the largest fire burning in the U.S. The blaze, now more than a month old, has blackened more than 269 square miles (696 square kilometers) — an area larger than the city of Chicago…

Fire officials warned Las Vegas residents that they should still be ready to leave and not to let their guards down because winds will pick up. High winds and increasing smoke will also make it difficult — or impossible — to fly water-dropping choppers and planes dumping fire retardant.

The few choppers and water bombers still able to work other fires – like “our” fire, the Cerro Pelado – continued to fly over our home heading West from the Santa Fe Airport. Making their way up to Los Alamos – working to save the Labs. And the wind forecast continues unabated. Red Flag warnings still posted at our airport weather station for Sunday and Monday. Scary times!

The Fightback against Far Right, Anti-Abortion Nutballs


Stephanie Keith/Getty

The far-right is celebrating what it sees as the impending collapse of abortion rights in the U.S., labeling women “witches” and “whores” and declaring “Christ is King” across social media.

“Christ is King” is a familiar phrase in Christianity, especially the Catholic Church, but it’s been co-opted recently by “America First” Christian ultra-nationalists, who have chanted it at political rallies and anti-abortion marches and used it as a rallying cry online. Now it’s being used to signify support for the demise of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide, after Politico published a leaked draft opinion by the Supreme Court Monday…

While the far-right have typically been anti-abortion by virtue of their position on the political spectrum, there’s been a recent uptick in interest in the issue among optics-savvy right-wing extremists. Those groups and individuals, in their efforts to mainstream their ideology, have sought alliances within established right-wing movements—including the well-oiled, deep-pocketed anti-abortion movement.

Sad news describing linkups, transplantation, revitalization of some of the worst nutball elements on the Right. Still…interesting, info everyone needs to be clear on which flavor of dementia you encounter while battling for womens’ rights.

Chances getting better for a United Ireland

Sinn Féin will be the largest party in Northern Ireland after elections on May 5, according to every recent opinion poll.

This would be a significant symbolic breakthrough for the left-wing party, historically linked to the Irish Republican Army (IRA). It will confirm the political and demographic shifts since the 1998 “Good Friday” peace agreement, which has ended the once hegemonic Unionist dominance of Northern Ireland. The election is also likely to see further growth of the centre ground parties – those who do not have a fixed position on the constitutional question.

The effect on Irish unity will be indirect rather than immediate. Under the terms of the 1998 peace agreement, a united Ireland can only be created, if majorities vote for it in separate referendums in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. All polls say a referendum will pass in the Republic, and while Brexit has seen a significant increase in support for Irish unity in Northern Ireland, most polls predict that a referendum would not pass there if called immediately, although the number of undecided voters may be as high as 25 percent. Those absolutely committed to Northern Ireland remaining in the United Kingdom, are now a minority.

A nation once again… (sigh!)

Religious nutballs own our Supreme Court

From the National Women’s Law Center

Tonight, a draft Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade was leaked. The language in that opinion is outrageous, irresponsible, and shocking—and the unsurprising culmination of a decades-long plan to end our right to abortion. It also confirms what we’ve already known: the Supreme Court has been politicized and weaponized by extremist politicians who want to take away our rights.

If the opinion that was leaked tonight is finalized, our fundamental right to reproductive autonomy, agency, and freedom will be eroded beyond recognition, and 50 years of settled law will be obliterated.

Any Justice who signs onto this opinion is fueling the harm and violence that will happen to people who become pregnant in this country.

If you only do one thing tonight, support abortion funds who are fighting to ensure people have access to care no matter what the Supreme Court says. Follow this link for a list of abortion funds to support.

I’ll be honest: the road ahead is scary. But we will never stop fighting for a world where our bodies, lives, and futures aren’t controlled by the court, anti-abortion extremists, or politicians who try to shame us. Until then, we will need all of you, and all of us, today, tomorrow, and beyond.

In solidarity…

By the age of 22, I had twice broken a religion-based, crap law, in my birth state, Connecticut. A state that bragged on itself as the Constitution State, BTW. I’d paid for one illegal abortion. I had a vasectomy. Oh yes, in particular, representatives of the Holy Roman Catholic Church in my state, doing their G_d’s Will, didn’t want any opportunity available for individuals to thwart what they considered heaven-sent law.

And, now, the highest court in this land is preparing to overturn settled law on the basis of their religious and political beliefs. Screw science, screw virtually unanimous studies about women’s rights or a legal system that supports choice over an ideology leftover from the Dark Ages.

A Supreme Court that picks a political side in this manner is no longer free and progressive. They should be judged with the contempt they deserve. They don’t deserve the respect one might show to an ignorant animal.

Edward A. Campbell [eideard]

The Great Resignation is Aging

Higher-paid workers are increasingly quitting their jobs, as the Great Resignation — also known as the Great Reshuffle — enters its second year. Earlier in the pandemic, the trend was led by younger, less-tenured workers in low-paying industries like retail, food service, and health care. Now, the main growth in quit rates is coming from older, more tenured workers in higher-paid industries like finance, tech, and other knowledge worker fields, according to data from two separate human resources and analytics companies. These workers say they are searching for less tangible benefits like meaning and flexibility…

“The Great Resignation is almost like a train, where it’s built all this momentum and it’s hard to slow down, but certain workers are getting off the train and new workers are coming on,” said Luke Pardue, an economist at Gusto, which provides payroll, benefits, and human resource management software to small- and medium-sized businesses…

Between the first quarter of 2021 and 2022, the greatest growth in resignations was among people aged 40 to 60 and those with a tenure of more than 10 years, a Visier dataset from companies with over 1,000 employees shows. Older and more tenured people are especially likely to be quitting in knowledge worker industries like finance and tech.

The reasons are many and varied, RTFA for this one, especially, folks. Some of the reasons may sound like someone you know. Maybe that person in the mirror in the morning.

Low Rider

Start it up, go full screen — down in the lower RH corner is a line of copy starting with “CC” — click on it a red line appears underneath. You got the words, now — singalong!

Republicans decide Nazis had the best idea when they came up with burning books

The Republican-led Tennessee state House passed a bill Wednesday that would require public school librarians to submit to the state a list of book titles for approval, as a GOP lawmaker suggested burning books that are deemed inappropriate.

During a contentious debate on the bill in the House, state Rep. John Ray Clemmons (D) asked state Rep. Jerry Sexton (R) what he would do with the books that he and the state consider inappropriate for libraries.

“You going to put them in the street? Light them on fire? Where are they going?” Clemmons asked.

“I don’t have a clue, but I would burn them,” Sexton replied.

“That’s what I thought,” Clemmons said…

Book burning is emblematic of authoritarian regimes, and it was notably carried out in Nazi Germany. One of the most prominent examples in history occurred May 10, 1933, when students in German universities set fire to more than 25,000 books that were deemed “un-German,” according to the U.S. Holocaust Museum. The action came after some 40,000 people gathered to hear Joseph Goebbels, chief propagandist for the Nazi Party, deliver an address declaring “No to decadence and moral corruption,” according to the museum.

Under the Tennessee House bill, librarians would be required to submit to a state-run commission a list of book titles in their collections for approval. The Tennessee state Senate approved a different version of the bill. After differences between the two are resolved, it will head to Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) to be signed into law.

This new formerly-known-as-the-Republican-Party will now literally carry their torch forward to advance racism, discrimination on gender, politics and sexual identity. All the bigotry historically favored by the Nazi Party…is now embraced as the heart and soul of the Republican Party.