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Whew

[ 190 ] January 18, 2015 |

gruber

“You ask for a miracle. I give you…Mike McCarthy.”

If you don’t want to give Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch the chance to hang around and beat you, you probably don’t want to spend the first quarter throwing points away for no obvious reason. But, hey, I’ll take the Super Bowl appearance, and Packers fans can content themselves with their coach impressing the announcers with his commitment to old-school bullshit.

NFL Conference Championship Picks/Open Thread

[ 154 ] January 18, 2015 |

SEAHAWKS (-8) over Packers You know about these teams. The real question here is Rodgers’s health. If his calf isn’t a major issue, 8 points is too much to give up to the most valuable player in the sport, and his near-flawless second half against the Cowboys would suggest that it isn’t. But his first half makes clear that he’s not going to be near full mobility, and the Seattle defense is much better positioned to exploit this than Dallas’s was. This will probably be close most of the way, but I think Seattle will eventually pull away.

PATRIOTS (-6 1/2) over Colts. I don’t mean to be stubborn, but this is a much easier call. I know Indianapolis has looked good the last two weeks. But the first game was against a below-average QB missing his only two decent weapons (and, yes, yes, picking against the Colts there was as stupid as a pick against the spread can be, an excellent illustration of why contrarianism is dumb and “hmm, should I be picking 4 favorites?” logic is even dumber.) And even Andy Dalton would probably have given Denver a better shot that the “Peyton Manning” who showed up last week. This week, they’re going up against a healthy icon. The (past-peak but still excellent) icon has only one great weapon, but 1)the weapon is great and it’s not clear how the Colts can deal with him if he stays on the field, and 2)the bunch of OK additional options should allow McDaniels to game plan around Vontae Davis easily (and Davis is apparently well less than 100% anyway.) Admittedly, Luck will do some damage — if the Broncos couldn’t get any pass rush it’s not clear how New England will. And they won’t benefit from the inevitable 2-yards-a-carry-plus-fumble from Trent “so nice he was worth a first rounder twice!” Richardson. But the Pats are better offensively and defensively, playing at home. I think they’re headed to Arizona without a great deal of difficulty.

…I greatly appreciate the valiant efforts of Seahawks MVP Mike McCarthy to keep them in the game, but I don’t think it’s going to be enough. Apparently my worries last year about Seattle’s third-rate receiving corps weren’t so much wrong as premature.

Lanny and Roger

[ 15 ] January 18, 2015 |

Two bad tastes that go perfectly together.

Impeach Obama!

[ 86 ] January 17, 2015 |

You may have heard about Tom Wolf’s salutary decision not to serve Yuengling, a terrible vaguely beer-flavored water brewed by a union-busting company, at his inaugural. But buried in the reporting is a truly disturbing fact:

When the Canadian ice hockey team defeated the United States at the 2010 Winter Olympics, President Barack Obama sent the Canadian prime minister a case of Yuengling, NBC Philadelphia reported. NBC said at the time that Yuengling was “the President’s brew of choice.”

Surely this will feature prominently when historians determine that Obama makes Buchanan look like Lincoln. I don’t know how the Weekly Standard‘s interns missed this dispositive evidence.

Restricting Civil Forfeiture

[ 105 ] January 16, 2015 |

Very important news:

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. on Friday barred local and state police from using federal law to seize cash, cars and other property without evidence that a crime occurred.

Holder’s action represents the most sweeping check on police power to confiscate personal property since the seizures began three decades ago as part of the war on drugs.

Since 2008, thousands of local and state police agencies have made more than 55,000 seizures of cash and property worth $3 billion under a civil asset forfeiture program at the Justice Department called Equitable Sharing.

I’m sure that had Mitt Romney won Attorney General Yoo would have done exactly the same thing, though.

…Balko has more.

“The arc of justice may be long, but Chief Justice Roberts is bending it towards Rand Paul.”

[ 17 ] January 16, 2015 |

And, alas, it’s the real Rand Paul, not the civil libertarian ones some people have invented.  And, yes, if King v. Burwell is reversed, we’re in a second age of of Lochner.   (Ian did leave out my favorite example of the utter incoherence of reactionary jurisprudence of the early 20th century: Hammer v. Dagenhart. Sure, Congress might have limited itself to what the Court itself had repeatedly said was regulating interstate commerce, but Congress could still not do so because…I’m not going to lie to you Marge. Well, goodbye! And using transparently erroneous legal arguments to deny health insurance to 10 million people would fit it nicely next to the use of transparently erroneous legal arguments to help businesses exploit child labor.

Notes on the Ongoing Death of Freedom

[ 77 ] January 16, 2015 |

Here’s one of the horrible outcomes the Halbig troofers are trying to eliminate:

For the first time in a decade, the number of people struggling to pay their medical bills has started to decline, according to a new survey released on Thursday by the Commonwealth Fund. The researchers attributed the historic drop to the number of people gaining insurance under the health care reform law.

Between 2012 and 2014 — as Obamacare’s main coverage expansion took effect — the Commonwealth researchers found that the number of people who had issues paying for health treatment dropped from 41 percent to 35 percent. Over the same time period, the people who skipped out on health services because they couldn’t afford them declined from 43 percent to 36 percent.

Hopefully, the Supreme Court will act quickly to free people from the tyranny of more affordable medical insurance and restore the most precious liberties of all, the freedoms to declare bankruptcy and forgo medical care.

Annotating Christopher Caldwell

[ 112 ] January 15, 2015 |

For my Gawker debut, I show that there hasn’t been an argument made in such detail or with such care since Liberal Fascism

Perhaps Caldwell’s essay was an homage to the late Straussians Walter Berns and Harry Jaffa.  Presumably the esoteric meaning of the essay is that Obama’s legacy is unassailable…

UPDATE: Link fixed! Although let Target’s experience be a lesson that Canadians are a hard, unforgiving people.

SAVE US MITTENS!

[ 79 ] January 15, 2015 |

Shorter Roger L. Simon: “Everything changed for me on 9/11.  I used to be a Democrat, but then I figured out that only Mitt Romney bully pulpiting the Overton Window stood between the United States and SHARI’AH LAW.  I am not a crackpot.”

Exactly How Terrible is the Roberts Court?

[ 28 ] January 15, 2015 |

How will the horrible consequences of a Supreme Court ruling that the Moops invaded Spain affect Kennedy and Roberts?  Beats me:

Saying that judges are pragmatists in practice, however, doesn’t necessarily get us very far. The swing votes on the court could evaluate the consequences of destroying the federally established state exchanges very differently. Perhaps Roberts and Kennedy will be dismayed at the prospect of millions of people losing their insurance. But perhaps they will be more concerned with teaching congressional Democrats a lesson. After all, congressional Republicans have never found large numbers of people lacking health insurance a particularly pressing issue — why should conservative Republicans on the Supreme Court be any different? The pragmatism of the justices can cut both ways.

We will have a better insight into what the justices think after oral arguments in March. But I remain pessimistic for one overriding reason: it’s not clear why the court would have taken the case in the first place if it didn’t want to throw a monkey wrench into the exchanges.

 

Tanned, Rested, Ready, and Obscenely Wealthy: A Guest Post By Mitt “Mitt” Romney

[ 49 ] January 14, 2015 |

Lawyers, Guns and Money is proud to interrupt your usual string of lazy link with one-liner posts insightful longform essays with an impassioned missive from someone back in the news, an alleged former governor of Massachusetts and professional fundraiser and robotic talking-points spouter. Enjoy!

Gosh, my friends, it sure seems like only yesterday when we were on our way to a crushing victory over the, ah, dark forces of Barack Obama, under whose leadership America’s once-bright future has, um, dimmed, leaving us staring into a bla–

Uh, well, you understand where I’m coming from. “Ann” and I to this day often sit down with our five boys — Tagg, Fritz, Spork, Clog, and (annoyed grunt) — and ask ourselves what happened. They’re growing boys, as you know, and they’ll often scarf down one of “Ann’s” special treats, like unflavored pudding or mayonnaise on white bread. Clog likes his bread toasted, but “Ann” says the shards of toast “feel like machetes” when she tries to swallow it, so it’s plain white bread for us.

I can assure you that our internal campaign figures and computer numbers and whatnot guaranteed a “Mitt” Romney victory — my top advisers assured me of such every time their direct deposit payments hit their checking accounts, and I’m sure they were right on the money. But I suppose some things will have to remain a mystery, like, for example, the exact percentage of our income that “Ann” and I have paid in taxes over the past several years. Only God and Saul, our Israelite accountant, will ever know for sure.

At any rate, while “Ann” and I have made no final decisions about what would be my first real attempt at winning election to the presidency (my first race was merely dabbling, and you’ll recall that my last attempt at the office was undertaken largely against my will, so these should not be counted), I can assure you that we will not be swayed by the opinions of Jennifer Robins at the Washington Post. I plan spend the next few months asking ordinary Americans what I can do to help make their lives better. I’ll go from corporate boardroom to corporate boardroom, from country club to $50,000 a plate gala dinner, to hear from regular folks.

“Regular folks.” Ha! They’re adorable! Many of them, I would imagine, don’t even have elevators for their cars! I guess you’re taking the stairs, Mr. Aston Martin! Oh, gosh, I’m almost giddy today!

These are people who realize that, under a “Mitt” Romney presidency, there would be no ISIS, and Vladimir Putin would know his place. People would be more physically appealing, cancer would surrender to our doctors, and everyone would win the Powerball. That’s the kind of leadership you’ll see from President “Mitt” Romney, and it would be unfair to the American people to deprive them of my own gifts simply because Robert Jefferson at the Washington Post has some problem with me attempting what, again, would really be my first run for the presidency, or political office of any kind, really.

Rest assured that once I have interacted with other human beings in regards to my future plans, I will inform you of same in a timely fashion. Thank you my friends, and God Bless the United States of America!

Mitt “Mitt” Romney

“Sure, Lucy Didn’t Even Bring Her Football Onto the Field. But, Trust Me, It Will Be There.”

[ 33 ] January 14, 2015 |

Matt Lewis insults your intelligence:

If Obama were really concerned about bridging the gap, he wouldn’t reflexively promise to veto the first piece of legislation presented to him by this new Congress. Doing so doesn’t exactly demonstrate that he heard the message voters sent him in November when, yes, his policies were on the ballot, and yes, they were rejected. But perhaps more importantly, passing Keystone would be a gesture of goodwill to a new Congress. It might actually restore some small modicum of hope in the American people that their government can get something done — that we aren’t predestined to suffer gridlock and obstructionism.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Right, Obama refusing to veto Keystone would surely produce an era of bipartisan comity. And If Obama were to veto 3 whole bills in 6 years, this could clearly be identified as the primary source of gridlock on Washington. And Ryan Lindley will be the NFL MVP next year. Scout’s honor!

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