Edge of the knife

You may have noticed Big Brother peeking in on this and every Blogger website. It's a little tab at the top of the page marked "Flag?" Blogger's explanation is here, but it's basically a way for readers to complain about postings they find offensive.

Potential for censorship: VERY HIGH

Something tells me it won't be much of a moral struggle for some leftist wacko to click away when his or her ideas are threatened.

I admit, it would probably take some time for things to get out of hand, but John Ray at Tongue Tied feels the same way I do. He explains here.


Stupidity run amok...

We all know that overweight people can be sensitive about their size, but this is ridiculous:
ROCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - Honesty apparently is not always the best policy when it comes to obesity.

A New Hampshire physician who told a female patient to lose weight is the target of a complaint filed by the woman. As Doctor Terry Bennett describes it: "I told a fat woman she was obese." Bennett says he was trying to get her attention because all those extra pounds would eventually kill her.

The woman was offended, and even a letter of apology from the doctor didn't do much good. She contacted the state, and that led to an investigation. No comment from state officials, citing privacy. The board of medicine's Web site says disciplinary sanctions in general may range from a reprimand to the revocation of all rights to practice in the state.

Other overweight patients have come to Bennett's defense, saying the truth should not be a punishable offense.


Adding insult to injury

Apparently, the officials for the City of New London, CT aren't satisfied that the courts are allowing them to steal the private property of seven of residents.

Now they want them to pay the city back rent.

A New (London) Low


Texas Senate passes eminent domain restrictions

Taking a break from the Hearne v. Mumford debate, I found an update to the quest for limited government use of eminent domain: "Senate adopts eminent domain measure, sends bill to governor" (AP)

Now the issue is in Governor Perry's hands, who is expected to sign the bill.

The bill -- SB7 -- says eminent domain MAY NOT be used if the action:
(1) confers a private benefit on a particular private party through the use of the property;
(2) is for a public use that is merely a pretext to confer a private benefit on a particular private party;
(3) is for economic development purposes, unless the economic development is a secondary purpose resulting from municipal community development or municipal urban renewal activities...to eliminate an existing affirmative harm on society from slum or blighted areas; or
(4) is to raise revenue to meet the cost of a public project if the property being taken is not otherwise necessary for the safe or convenient operation of that public project, except that this subdivision does not affect the distribution of surplus
toll revenue as otherwise provided by law.

It sounds like a good start, but I still like the idea of a state Constitutional amendment more. (My concerns here)


Kids in school of choice, future still pending

Good news for displaced white transfers: the 5th Circut Court of Appeals overturned Judge Justice's denial of the stay, meaning kids enrolled in Mumford schools can attend, regardless of where their from -- or the color of their skin.

However, there won't be an opinion on Justice's ruling until October, when the 5th Court will hear the case.

Coverage here at KBTX-TV and other angles to the story from the home page
The Houston Chronicle has picked up the story. Their coverage is here
Also, FoxNews is going to run the story in the next couple of days. Watch for it

Previous Hearne v. Mumford posts:
Hearne parents react (8.11.05)
Rumble in Robertson Co. (8.10.05)
What's best for the kids? (8.9.05)


Hearne parents react

Many Hearne, TX parents who send their children to neighboring Mumford but are now banned from doing so say they're taking the fight to the school steps Thursday morning. They're planning to show up with their kids to demand they be let into their classrooms.

I'll post more when I find out how things went.

For now, read up on the controversy:
Rumble in Robertson Co. (8.10.05)
What's best for the kids? (8.9.05)


Rumble in Robertson Co.

Confusion abounds as Mumford, TX ISD officials "do their best" to comply with a court order banning them from accepting white student tranfers from neighboring Hearne. An update from yesterday, US Eastern District of Texas Judge William Justice has denied a stay of his order that would have let current transfers go to school today.

At issue are some 60 white students who -- along with a majority of hispanic and black students -- left Hearne for better-performing schools in Mumford.

This morning (the first day of school), Mumford didn't turn any white students away, but says some kids didn't show at all.

Interestingly, Mumford itself is 60% minority students but their schools are being blamed for upsetting the racial mix in Hearne. Has anyone considered that bringing white students to Mumford is increasing diversity there? If having a diverse student body is what our schools are supposed to do, why shouldn't Mumford be aided in that quest?

In the meantime, Mumford says it will turn all white Hearne students away tomorrow, even as its lawyers appeal

Other Hearne v. Mumford posts:
What's best for the kids? (8.9.05)

UPDATE: Latest media coverage from KBTX-TV and the Bryan/College Station Eagle.


Texas eminent domain update

Last special session, these measures didn't get anywhere, but today, Governor Rick Perry expanded the mandate of the current session to include the issue of eminent domain.

Tonight, the Senate passed a bill that would limit the use of eminent domain. The measure is similar to the one passed before (see previous posts w/ commentary here). That bill failed because the Senate and House couldn't agree on a final version (the House wanted tougher restrictions).

Again, I guess we'll have to wait and see.

What's best for the kids?

Time for some local news.

Hearne, TX ISD recently won an appeals decision in the US Eastern District Court of Texas that injoins neighboring Mumford ISD from aiding white families who wish to transfer to its schools from schools in Hearne. (story here)

All of Hearne's schools were most recently rated "Academically Acceptable," the median rating the Texas Education Agency issues (click here for Hearne's scores). Mumford's schools got "Regognized" ratings (click here for Mumford's scores).

However, because the court decided the transfers to Mumford are "reducing or impeding desegregation in Hearne," Hearne parents are no longer allowed to send their kids to the better schools in Mumford. And because the issue is desegregation, the rule only applies to white families.

Can you say discrimination?!


No good deed...

I just found this story: "Finders Aren't Keepers in Chicago"

Apparently, a woman finds $2,000, turns it in to police with the understanding that if it's not claimed in a month, she'll get to keep it. After a month, the police department -- believe it or not -- decided they should keep it.

This telling quote is from Chicago station WFLD's coverage of the story:
"When the city is unable to find the owner, found money becomes the property of the City of Chicago to enrich the citizens of Chicago, not just one person who happened to find the money."

It's just more evidence that the government is run by people who are just as greedy as they accuse those in the public sector of being.

Like C.S. Lewis said:
"The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."


A clearer picture of the Supreme Court debate

Ok. So I just read this story about Democrats' fears that Roberts "may be inclined to support state or local interests on issues from civil rights to pollution control if confirmed to the high court."

The case involves one in which Roberts ruled against an endangered toad in San Diego, siding instead with a construction company that had the support of the local government.

The problem is that Sen. Kennedy et al. are worried about a potential judge siding with local government against TOADS, but not about five sitting judges siding with local government against PEOPLE (a la Kelo v. New London).

The story offers a clearer picture not of Roberts' judicial philosophy, but of the mindset of those opposing him in the Senate.

President Bush: Hot or Not?

Drudge has a good summary of President Bush's annual check-up and even thinks he may be the fittest president in history.

Interestingly though, he's overweight -- at least according to the CDC's BMI calculator.

For a more humorous/ironic look at the government's absurd fitness guidelines -- including a list of "overweight" and "obese" celebrities that may surprise you -- check out the Center for Consumer Freedom's BMI calculator.

I, for one, welcome our new Food Nanny overlords...

P.S. -- Moving is a pain. I think I need a vacation after that vacation...