Ashford seeks to revoke Constitutional rights

Brad Ashford 105Democrat Congressman Brad Ashford of Omaha has sidled up to President Obama and declared that he wants to ban guns from people on the no-fly list.

Because screw due process and the 2nd Amendment!

Wait what?

In all the clamor about Trump and potential non-American immigrants, the Omaha metro’s Congressman — who is currently Brad Ashford, folks — wants to strip a Constitutional right from Americans who are put on some bureaucrat’s blacklist.

You’ll note that Nebraska’s 3rd District Congressman, Adrian Smith, remarks that this is nonsense.


Because the no-fly list has a bunch of names on it that aren’t double-checked, checked for doubles, cleared, etc. For instance, Senator Ted Kennedy was on that list, because of a double name. Stephen Hayes of The Weekly Standard and Fox News ended up on the list for unknown reasons.

One wonders what sort of issues former Nebraska football stars Ameer Abdullah and Abdul Muhammad might have.

Kevin Williamson of National Review writes about this today, and makes some excellent points…

The purpose of a list is, lest we forget, to be cleared. If Jim Bob is on your list of terrorist suspects, what do you do? Just sit on the list forever and think up new things that Jim Bob should not be allowed to do. (Exercise his First Amendment rights? Protest? Write a letter to the editor? Go to church?) No. You can: 1) Investigate until you have evidence of a crime and hand down an indictment; 2) clear him from the list after investigation; 3) come up with a specific rationale for continued surveillance. But that’s not what we’re doing. We’re just making eternal lists, which the Democrats intend to use for eternal harassment of their political rivals.

But what does Brad Ashford have to say about all of this?

The Democrats even have a new position on the ancient civil-rights issue of due process, and that position is: “F— you.” The Bill of Rights guarantees Americans (like it or not) the right to keep and bear arms; it also reiterates the legal doctrine of some centuries standing that government may not deprive citizens of their rights without due process. In the case of gun rights, that generally means one of two things: the legal process by which one is convicted of a felony or the legal process by which one is declared mentally incompetent, usually as a prelude to involuntary commitment into a mental facility. The no-fly list and the terrorism watch list contain no such due process. Some bureaucrat somewhere in the executive branch puts a name onto a list, and that’s that. The ACLU has rightly called this “Kafkaesque.”

And in case you were wondering…

The murdering woman in San Bernardino was traveling the world on a Pakistani passport and had spent a great deal of time in Saudi Arabia before all but announcing her intentions on Facebook with her public declaration of allegiance to the Islamic State. That loon didn’t make it onto anybody’s no-fly list, but we’re giving the hairy eyeball to guys from Wauwatosa, Wisc., writing biographies of Dick Cheney. Well-done, Secret Agent Jackass, here’s a new decoder ring.

Just so we are clear, Donald Trump is a currently unelected businessman. He can’t change any laws, by fiat or by legislation.

But Brad Ashford is in the highest lawmaking body of the land.
And HE is proposing ignoring Due Process and stripping many presumably innocent people of their Constitutional Rights (and not “gun control” as the OWH writes it).

Just like the President.

Oh and by the way, this is the extent of any new plans they have for defeating ISIS.



Don’t be surprised when the talk in the Legislature — and potentially the November ballot — becomes pot, pot and more pot.

As noted here and elsewhere, State Senator Tommy Garrett is pushing for medical marijuana use in Nebraska.

The main knock against it is that it will eventually go the way of some sort of dispensaries or meld into recreational use a la Colorado.

And Attorney General Doug Peterson is stepping up his efforts to fight any recreational use plan like Colorado’s from coming to Nebraska.

What will be interesting to see is whether Peterson or the Governor make a political slide to allow medicinal use while still fighting recreational use. One would think it is not a difficult position, but it will take some maneuvering to placate any of those who feel like giving in to one is the same as the other.

I still think many people would be surprised to know that Marinol, a synthetic cannabinoid used to treat or prevent nausea and vomiting caused by cancer medicines, is a legal drug in the entire country.

The local chemists will tell you that it is very different from marijuana for a number of reasons.  Nonetheless, it would seem to start you down the road of legalization.

Don’t know where they will be going on this, but it will be an interesting discussion to watch.


What color will Pete wear?

Creighton vs Nebraska basketball tonight.

Always a hoot of a game.

And the Jays have had Lil’ Red’s number for the past 4 years.

But one would think Nebraska is going to have a little more moxie in their step to stop this trend. And the Jays are coming off 2 hard losses, where they are still searching for their winning form.

Boy if the Huskers can’t get up to pull off a win in front of 18K in Omaha, not sure when it’s gonna happen…


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    • The Grundle King says:

      Except (and you would know this if you’d read past the headline), you don’t need to be an actual confirmed, dyed-in-the-wool terrorist to make it onto a terror watch list…unless you think Fmr. Sen. Ted Kennedy was a terrorist. Suspected murderer, sure…but not a terrorist.

      But let’s think about the irony, here. Pres. Obama wants to bring all the ACTUAL terrorists in Gitmo to the United States to stand trial. In other words, he wants to give several non-American citizens the Constitutional benefit of due process.

      And yet, he also wants to forbid SUSPECTED terrorists, or just airline passengers who got a little too pissed off about the stale peanuts, from purchasing or possessing firearms…and he wants to do so without any sort of formal proceeding beyond the stroke of a pen. In other words, he wants to deny a Constitutional right to American citizens without any sort of due process, whatsoever.

      And the vast, vast majority of Obama-supporting liberals and Democrats will simply nod in agreement with such lunacy, because they view the Constitution like a coupon book. “If only we could clip out that whole free exercise of religion, right to own guns, powers reserved by the states, election of senators by popular vote, and presidential term limits…then by gosh, we might be on to something!”

      • Sparkles says:

        1) Two GOP contenders for POTUS agree with Rep Ashford.
        A quote from one of these GOP contenders:
        “Of course, it makes common sense to say that, if you’re on a terrorist watch list, you shouldn’t be able to go out and get a gun,”

        2) The Transportation Security Administration is officially on record calling it a “myth” that Ted Kennedy was ever placed on the no-fly list.

        And it’s never been confirmed that Stephen Hayes was ever on the no-fly list. Hayes complained he was a subject of a more thorough pat down and luggage search after having purchased a one way ticket to Istanbul and returning two weeks later via Cruise ship.
        These are in fact destinations and irregular travel patterns of which Homeland Security is supposed to take note.
        I’ve been subjected to the same thorough pat down and luggage search, on a flight to a Caribbean Island with my wife! And, I’ve seen, on more than one occasion, old ladies pulled out of line a subjected to the very same treatment. It’s standard procedure for the TSA. If you’ve flown enough, you’ve been seen or experienced the very same treatment to which conservative pundit Stephen Hayes has complained about.

        3) And while were debunking, how we take up your imagined attack on the direct election of Senators by democrats. It is in fact Republicans and ALEC who continually float the weakening or repeal of the 17th Amendment.

        “..that effort has picked up steam with the rise of the tea party movement.

        Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) believes the country “lost something when we adopted” the 17th Amendment. Former Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), who lost his Senate bid in 2012 to Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), said, “The direct election of U.S. senators made the U.S. Senate act and behave like the House of Representatives. The end result has led to an erosion of states’ rights.”

        Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R), when asked recently whether he backs a repeal, replied, “You betcha, kemo-sabe.”

        The GOP’s likely 2016 Presidential Primary victor, Ted Cruz, has attacked the direct election of Senators.
        And the GOP’s current leading contender for POTUS, couldn’t tell you what the 17th was.

      • @Sparkles says:

        I wouldn’t exactly call the two Republican candidates for President who agree with restricting the civil rights of people on the no fly list “contenders”.

        And Cruz is definitely not the likely primary victor.

      • Bob Loblaw says:


        Who decides who is or is not a “suspected terrorist”? Who knows who is or isn’t on the list? What actions do you have to take to prove your innocence since you are presumed guilty?

        Reminds me of President Obama ordering the killing of an American citizen and his teenage son by a drone for being “terrorists.” I never saw the court conviction on that one either. Didn’t democrats used to be the party of civil rights and the ACLU? What happened to your party standing up for the rule of law?

      • Sparkles says:


        Really, you wouldn’t consider Trump a “contender”?
        Trump has been alone atop the polls, in dominating fashion, since what.. mid-July?

        And although Kasich is destined to be a primary footnote, he indeed was elected and served for 18 years on the House Armed Services Committee before being elected, twice, as Governor of one our nations largest states. I’m pretty sure each victory was as a Republican.
        In between his elected gigs serving for 6 years as a Fox News host.
        It would seem his conservative cred is pretty solid.

      • Sparkles says:


        Valid questions and observation.

        I would imagine it all boils down to your level of trust in elected officials to recognize and appoint talented, intelligent people to positions of authority throughout various agencies.
        Based on an array of officials who have served, i.e. Robert Gates, James Comey, Tom Vilsack, Jack Lew and others, I’m inclined to trust the Obama administration.
        I believe, in large part, the “Brownies” have been successfully weeded out of government.

        As for Obama sanctioning the killing American citizens, Syed Rizwan Farook was an American citizen, born in Illinois.

      • Sparkles says:

        Of course the constitution prohibits the Obama administration from replacing every “Brownie” appointed to a position of power in government.
        To wit, Wednesday, Dec 9, 2015:
        “There are those who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to get them into the University of Texas, where they do not do well,” Scalia said, “as opposed to having them go to a less-advanced school … a slower-track school where they do well.”
        – Justice Antonin Scalia

  1. Anonymous says:

    Sit back and eat popcorn. Round Two of Northstar group (Borchers) versus Jess Moenning (Linehan) in the LD 39 race. Round One was 2013 Omaha Mayor’s race.

  2. bynd says:

    44 years of the war on drugs. And where has it got us? No further than when we started. I believe it was two years ago that the count was up to 60,000 Mexicans dead. The vast majority, innocents or those forced into working for the drug lords. So, why are they paying for our bad habits? Just unlucky to be our neighbors and have a history of corruption? It hasn’t worked, isn’t working and will not work. There needs to be a better way. Educate and rehabilitate if necessary. Cheaper and a lot less will die. If you must tax, a dollar reduction in taxes for every dollar brought in by drug taxes, because the politicians do not need more revenue. Or we could use our current war strategy and bomb our borders.

  3. Truth Hertz says:

    Ashford is universally deemed the most vulnerable idiot in the HOR. So Nebraska pundits of course waste keystrokes on him. He will be fried crisp as Bacon soon enough. Now, on to something that matters…

    The GOP National Chairman and GOP House Speaker both condemned Trump for suggesting the US ban Muslim immigration until we figure out what is going on. — Trump signed a pledge to support the GOP. Now the GOP itself backstabs Trump… but au contraire… actually he suckered these fools just like he suckered Bush, Fiorina, and Carson. If being stupid is worth something, the GOP has an embarrassment of riches.

    Trump has them hooked on their own political correctness. And since PC is the DNC’s bread and butter, the GOP is not good at it. Lying to feel good is Democrat schiess. Elephants cannot out-shit the shitters. But Priebus and Ryan try.

    Do you remember when Trump said he was “not sure whether Islam is inherently peaceful or violent?” That was the sucker draw. He knows none of these GOP leaders have read the Koran, Suras, witnessed Sharia, or spent years observing in country. Few of us have. Average Americans however sense that Islam isn’t normal peaceful religion and it isn’t. Read its instruction manual.

    Bloomberg polls say two thirds of Likely GOP Voters agree with Trump on this. Trump has jumped 8 pts in a day. Whereas Reagan gently led the blind GOP leadership by the hand, Trump is dragging them by the scruff of the neck.

    This is the most fun I’ve had in politics in some time. It delights me because a cancerous DNC and cancer-lite RNC are getting chemo. They howl like babies taking medicine. Simmer down, its good for you. It is called truth.

    • Sparkles says:

      Of course, the majority of Americans recoil in disgust and dismay at the xenophobia, bigotry and race-baiting of Donald Trump.

      A majority that will show up at the polls on November 8, 2016 to dole out a resounding defeat of the extremist ideology of the anti=government, anti-science GOP.

      • “According to a Public Religion Research Institute poll conducted earlier this year, 77 percent of Trump supporters believe “the values of Islam are at odds with American values and way of life,” versus 72 percent of other Republicans (43 percent of Democrats said the same). “.

        Wrong again.

  4. Trump isn’t going to be nominated. And the Democrats are easily as anti-science as the Republicans. And I’m speaking as a scientist; Sparkles’ only qualifications are in Applied Idiocy.

    • Sparkles says:

      Newly released CBS News/NYT poll –

      Trump 35%
      up 13 points from CBS/NYT Oct poll numbers

      Cruz 16%
      up 12 points from Oct poll

      Carson 13%
      down 13 points

      Rubio 9%
      up 1 point

  5. Sparkles: ““There are those who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to get them into the University of Texas, where they do not do well,” Scalia said, “as opposed to having them go to a less-advanced school … a slower-track school where they do well.”
    – Justice Antonin Scalia”

    You dispute this is true? Got any cites to contradict? Any experience in higher education? Anything? Bueller?

    • Sparkles says:

      There was an audible gasp in the courtroom at Scalia’s utterance.

      Rubio is incapable of managing his household finances, how does one imagine he can run the world’s most powerful nation?
      Cruz will crush Rubio. He’s exponentially more intelligent, far more devious and has no qualms going full-on demogogue which is a requirement to successfully pander to a Limbaugh-steeped GOP base sufficient in number to secure a primary victory, A modern day GOP base which will never forgive Rubio’s brief dalliance with comprehensive immigration reform.

      And this statement of yours is not only impossible to defend, it’s simply moronic:
      “Democrats are easily as anti-science as the Republicans.”

      You’re a bit of a tool, aren’t you Gerard.

      • Of course there was an audible gasp. How dare he say the emperor has no clothes.

        “Yet if the findings in this Article are correct, blacks are the victims of law school programs of affirmative action, not the beneficiaries. The programs set blacks up for failure in school, aggravate attrition rates, turn the bar exam into a major hurdle, disadvantage most blacks in the job market, and depress the overall production of black lawyers. Whites, in contrast, arguably benefit from preferences in a number of ways. Whites have higher grades because blacks and other affirmative action beneficiaries fill most of the lower ranks; whites are the most obvious beneficiaries of the diversity produced by affirmative action programs; it is even plausible to argue that bar passage rates are kept high to avoid embarrassingly high failure rates by minority exam-takers.”

        Richard H Sander, Professor of Law, UCLA; Ph.D., Economics, Northwestern University, in “A systematic analysis of affirmative action in law schools”. Stanford Law Review, 2004, v. 57, 367-483.

        It’s long, and I know your lips will get tired reading it, but you really should.

        The bullshit hitjob the NY Times did on Rubio in no way showed he couldn’t manage his own finances. The NY Times, in its invincible cis-Hudsonian ignorance, called Rubio’s $80,000 fishing boat a ‘luxury speedboat’. The guys at the marina thought that was priceless.

        And since you don’t know any science, or have any qualifications in science, Sparkles your opinion on what is or is not anti science, such as opposition to GM, hysteria about ‘chemicals’, wilful blindness about the heritability of traits, etc. etc., is of no value whatsoever.

        You’re a ranting idiot with lunatic opinions you can’t back up with facts.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH I think it unlikely Scalia was referring to the amicus brief, more likely he was expressing his own opinion. Probably thinks Thomas was better off going to Yale than Harvard. Certainly turning an article into an amicus brief does not make it more probative.

      • RL: from an article you can find by googling” Antonin Scalia Says Black Scientists Would Benefit From A ‘Slower’ Academic Track”

        “Citing an amicus brief, Scalia said “that it does not benefit African-Americans” that don’t do well in school to attend schools through affirmative action programs. He said, “They’re being pushed into schools that are too advanced for them.”

        Scalia was referencing an amicus brief by UCLA law professor Richard Sander.”

        Maybe it would be better in future to spend a few minutes on the Google rather than pontificating solemnly in complete ignorance of the facts.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH,so Scalia was deciding the case in advance in an interview, then why is he sitting? Or did he reference the brief on the bench, which the argument does not indicate? As pontification goes, it is the curse of the professorial class, though you descent into rants and abuse does tempt me.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, found reference to brief, still bothered that he treats it as settling the matter during argument, but he tends to like to aggravate those with whom he disagrees.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, WSJ has an article today noting that whatever the validity of Sander’s work, Texas has demonstrated that it is irrelevant to its system because it works very differently. So Scalia was citing an irrelevant argument and announcing he accepted it. Odd behavior for a judge unless he has become one of those all knowing Platonic guardians about whom Learned Hand complained.

      • The issue, RL, is the following. SCOTUS has two options. It could send the case back to the appeals court with more instructions about strict scrutiny. The problem is, the long and tortuous history of this case means almost no one thinks that will work; UT will weasel in AA by any means necessary. The other is to say the history indicates that, practically speaking, AA inevitably means overt racial preferences, ‘holistic admissions’ are a sham and that efforts to split the baby are futile. The only bar to getting a 5-3 majority for that is Kennedy, who, as usual, is the weak sister. Scalia is trying to convince Kennedy to make the leap and sign on to an opinion that strikes down preferences, once and for all.

        Viewing the case as about the narrow facial issues misses the big picture. THe WSJ (I take it too) today which points out some of the more subtle maneuvring, with Breyer trying cannily to prevent Kennedy from deserting AA entirely.

        Grutter v Bollinger in 2003 gave AA 25 years maximum. The clock is already run half-way. I’d give it about 60:40 to end it now, because they don’t want to be relitigating Fisher again, and they’d like to put a close to this era.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, I think you are probably right about the internal politics of the Court on this issue. Narrow opinions and close factual analysis are not the fashion. I am never sure how seriously to take Court watchers on argument though Thomas says that on cases like this one they all know where they stand and comments are just reminders. I still think Scalia talks too much. But whole Court is too much like watching sausage being made.
        On AA, not friends of Bill W, I never bought into the argument for judicial review but I have never been in favor of activism of the right or the left.

    • repenting lawyer says:

      ProfGH, If Scalia is an , expert authority on higher education, as opposed to a sometimes law prof, then since I taught more years than he did at a law school, I must be a greater expert. I confess I do not know enough about the right answer and neither does Scalia. If there was a record he should have referred to it, if no record then he should have kept his mouth shut, though he seems incapable of doing that. Mere contention by some unknown folks is , in the language of the law, bs.

      • Read this, and you’ll know the answer.

        Richard H Sander, Professor of Law, UCLA; Ph.D., Economics, Northwestern University, in “A systematic analysis of affirmative action in law schools”. Stanford Law Review, 2004, v. 57, 367-483.

        It’s openly accessible online.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, One law review article proves nothing. Doubt it would meet Daubert standards or even Fry. Was it in record before SCOTUS? As a non law type you might be unaware that law reviews being student edited and are student edited, rude non lawyer members of university r and t committees love to point this out.

      • Anon says:

        RL, are you going to deny that what Scalia said may have some basis, I could see this applying to people of all races, The case is being taken up by the highest court by justices of both sides. Lawyers arguing lawyers about a law probably enacted by mostly lawyers. The gasp of the audience, the uneasiness of PC. I am no lawyer, to me the language of the law is in court because of bs

      • repenting lawyer says:

        Anon, I think the issue is fairly debatable, which leaves effectiveness for non judicial deciders. Like most law profs Scalia and I have God complexes that make MDs look humble, we think we know everything, but a lot of what we think we know is not relevant to judicial decision. Issue of factual basis of Con Law decisions,is a complex issue, witness the famous Brown footnote, but I suspect Scalia’s comment is more a political than a judicial statement.

      • Sparkles says:

        As is the standard template the right (see: Tobacco trials, Climate Change denial and Anti-Gay legal initiatives) the paper and Professor you cite, Richard Sander, is a flyer and a highly controversial one.
        Prof. Sander’s thesis has ensured he has long been in demand in right wing circles as a debunker of all things affirmative action. It even garnered him guest spots on Fox’s Hannity & Colmes, surely the pinnacle of his career as an Economic Professor.

        A couple scholarly responses to the 2004 paper you cite –
        “The Black Student Mismatch Myth in Legal Education: The Systemic Flaws in Richard Sander’s Affirmative Action Study”
        Professor Cheryl I. Harris, the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation Chair in Civil Rights and Civil Liberties at UCLA School of Law where she teaches Constitutional Law, Civil Rights, Employment Discrimination, Critical Race Theory and Race Conscious Remedies.

        For a somewhat inclusive overview of the thorough invalidation of Sander, citations and links to scholarly studies included, google:
        “Sanding Down Sander – The debunker of affirmative action gets debunked.”

      • The so called rebuttal by Harris is published in a low-rated advocacy journal called the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. It’s big on rhetoric, and thin on actual challenges to Sander’s data. Most of it is quibbling — such as whether the strong correlation between LSAT scores and bar exam passage, determined from California data, is applicable nationally.

        And it has no citations at all.

        JBHE has an impact factor of 0.0 on ResearchGate.

        Remarkably, most of the critiques argue that without AA, black law school admissions would be far worse than Sander estimates (he says decline by 14%). In other words, preferences are much more important than he estimates, and the incoming scores of black students are much lower.

        Sander didn’t even bother to respond to Harris. probably because hers was not a serious academic paper. He has responded to other critics, whose purpose, he argues, is to shut down research, rather than refine the results. I recommend Sander’s ‘Reply to Critics’ which can be found on the UCLA website.

        Sparkles clearly cannot distinguish between substantive critiques and angry polemics. And he seems to be a protagonist of the standard tool of liberal denialism — if you can find one possible reason why a finding might not be flawless, it’s a rebuttal. Of course, those of us in the real world of science know that if you come up with an objection to published work, you have to substantiate your objection the same way the original work is substantiated. You can’t just expect to get away with “this could be wrong”.

        Of course, he said it better…

        “At the end of the day, however, the critiques … are surprisingly toothless. Most of these contributors concede (and none dispute) the basic facts that frame Systemic Analysis: blacks are nearly two-and-a-half times more likely than whites not to graduate from law school, are four times more likely to fail the bar on their first attempt, and are six times more likely to fail after multiple attempts. The overall lower average test scores and undergraduate grades of blacks obviously contribute to this gap—but no one disputes my finding that the black-white gap in graduation and bar passage is more than twice as large as can be explained by controlling for LSAT and undergraduate grade point average (UGPA) differences. None of these contributors offers any alternative explanation of this staggering black-white gap in graduation and bar passage, let alone a strategy for addressing it. If Stigler is right that it takes a theory to beat a theory, no one has even entered the arena. ”

        An alternative theory please, Sparkles.

      • And open up, RL: did you read it?

        Sanders has actually done much more than this one review article. He has by far and away the largest database in the field, much of which had to be dragged out kicking and screaming using FOIAs. In fact, he provided us in the Nebraska Civil Rights Initiative with his data for UNL.

      • Sparkles says:

        Oh look, Gerard’s defense of Economics Prof. Sander’s highly controversial, widely renounced ‘mismatch’ thesis (renounced by noted scholars throughout the nation) – is yet more words from the anti affirmative actions sole, “one-off”, alone in his field.. Sander.

        Here is yet another thorough debunking of Sander. A debunking that closely examines and methodically invalidates what you relayed in Sander’s defense of Sander, “A Reply to Crtics –
        “For those following this empirical debate about the costs and benefits of affirmative action, we provide this working paper as a response to Sander’s A Reply to Critics. We show the weaknesses in the logic that underlies many of Sander’s assumptions and arguments and show that his reply does not salvage the case against affirmative action that he claimed to have made in his Stanford article. Rather, Sander’s reply explicitly or implicitly repudiates much of the methodology and many of the claims he made in Systemic Analysis, even as he clings firmly to its conclusion and compounds earlier analytic mistakes with new ones.”
        A rebuttal by:
        Richard Lempert – Distinguished University Professor of Law and Sociology Emeritus.
        University of Michigan Law School

        William C. Kidder, Assistant Executive Vice Chancellor
        University of California, Riverside
        Lempert and Kidder would publish in May 2014: ‘The Mismatch Myth in American Higher Education: A Synthesis of Empirical Evidence at the Law School and Undergraduate Levels’

        Timothy T. Clydesdale – Prof of Sociology
        College of New Jersey

        David L. Chambers, Prof of Law – former president of the Society of American Law Teachers and Co-Chair of the Task Force on Diversity in Law Schools for the Association of American Law Schools.
        University of Michigan Law School

        So Gerard, got any more Sander defending Sander you’d like to share?
        Cause as I’m certain you’re aware, consensus of opinion is irrelevant to either scholarship or science. So one solitary dissenting voice, alone in it’s field, is all the validation we require.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, No I have not read it because I do not think it is relevant to the issue here. I do not think efficacy vel non is so clear it should be for the Courts and after a life time of law and economics articles I am left cynical and more devoted to mysteries. If you want to do a total lit search and Daubert presentation I will read it. Until then I stand on my position that the issue is debatable and not for the courts. I think efficacy has to be conceded and the issue fought out on the basis of the meaning of color blindness. Personally never thought issue was for courts and have trouble with originalists reading an amendment historically designed to allow affirmative action, the Freemen’s Bur. condems off action. Need living constitution for that.

      • Sparkles. Let me repeat one more time; the fact that a bunch of people politically allied with you don’t like a piece of work does not turn it into a rebuttal.

        The reply to reply to critics is quibbling (oh noes he used first time bar exam passes rather than eventual bar exam passes, as if the former weren’t evidence).

        They also make the specious claim that because Sander can’t explain the full extent of the poor performance of black law students and graduates, his explanation must be wrong. This is a complete non-sequitur. And then they go on to say (directly contradicting themselves) that “Social science norms caution against single cause, “magic bullet” explanations of between-group differences.” They claim he doesn’t have a theory; of course this is complete rubbish. His theory is that taking underqualified people and putting them into a class with better qualified people will actually cause them to fall behind, receive poorer grades because of curving, and ultimately do worse than if they were in a class of students of comparable ability. That is completely consistent with what we know of education in general. UNL has three Freshman Chemistry streams for exactly that reason; if we put the nursing students in with the chemical engineers, the nursing students will mostly get Ds. Why this *wouldn’t* apply to underqualified African Americans needs a pretty strong argument, which Chambers et al do not give.

        And Chambers et al completely ignore that the gap on leaving law school is worse than the gap on entering law school. That is indisputible evidence law school made the gap worse. They argue, blithely ignoring Sander’s data, that the lower performance of the African American graduates is purely a result of their lower entry qualifications. (Of course, previously they’d hand waved and said “It’s really complicated”)

        The critique is incoherent, self-contradictory and purely ideological. And the authors are amateurs; a ‘policy analyst’, two emeriti, and an associate professor from the College of New Jersey, ye gods.

      • I just downloaded the Sander/Taylor book ‘Mismatch’, and it reminded me that the response of the California Bar Association and the UC system to Sander’s work was to block him from accessing their data.

        If AA is on the up-and-up, how come so many of its advocates try to conceal the raw data from the public? What do they have to hide?

  6. Sweeper: between Sparkles and the Trumpkins, the stupid is really strong in this comments section at the moment.

    Just sayin’, I’d prefer an intelligent debate over the merits of Rubio vs. Cruz.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Let us indeed intelligently discuss the merits of Rubio vs. Cruz.

    RCP AVG for Cruz 15.5 and Rubio 14.8. Trump 29.3. Perhaps we should also discuss the merits of Graham. He is the only veteran in the race and he is at 0.0.

    I see your two Hispanics and raise you one Veteran.

    • Lindsay Graham would be worse than John McCain. I’m backing Rubio. At the moment, the GOP establsihment thinks he would be the best possible candidate, and the establishment usually gets its way.

      I like Cruz, but he’s too much of a bomb-thrower.

  8. DC Photos says:

    When you hang out with and support Democrats you never know who has your photo at certain events. I feel Jessica will have her hands full.

  9. bynd says:

    As some on here focus solely on what is happening here in the good ole USA, the elections around the world may portend what impact ISIS is having else where. France’s right wing party has made impressive gains with an attitude more like Trumps, but just a softer tone. We will see more this weekend.

    Venezuela. Are the socialists on their way out?

    Border crossings in the EU and the borders over there are being secured by none other than razor wire and armed guards with real bullets. Maybe the world is ready for a stronger leader instead of the milk toast Mr. Obama. It didn’t take long for the French to show the way on how to hit ISIS hard. It also didn’t take Putin long to cozy up to the pissed off French.

    As has been pointed out, a lot of Trump’s success comes from Obama’s communications failures. As much as there seems to be so much macho talk over here about not being afraid of ISIS, many are turning to the idea that more needs to done and the Dems are not the folks. We shall see.

    Even Rahm must go? The libs are starting to eat their own. Not surprising. They are reaping what they have sown. Interesting times, where will the independents come down at? Even a good economy doesn’t always guarantee good results for the ruling elite.

    • TexasAnnie says:

      For a “Christian”, bynd, you sure talk tough! Aren’t Christians supposed to espouse love and turn the other cheek? Nobody is saying we should not protect ourselves, particularly not Obama. But some of us believe diplomacy and cooperation are a better outcome than warfare. And Obama has communicated this message well enough; you just don’t like his communication!

      And bynd, I’m an atheist. But I have never started a war, killed anyone, or even been in a fist fight. Never. The most violent I have ever become during nearly 65 years of living resulted in nothing more than a screaming fit. Would I take up a gun to literally defend myself and my helpless daughter who remains in my care still after 30 years? Probably. But only as a last resort.

      (I didn’t get a chance to reply to your reply of yesterday. And I’m curious as to your “Christian” identity. You have already informed that in matters of government, your Christianity does not apply! So what is the worth of an ideology which does not apply?)

      • bynd says:


        Because I point something out means nothing more than I have pointed it out. Quit frankly, I have no doubt this world keeps getting worse and not better. And such is seen all over the world.

        I suppose I could put a disclaimer on some of what I write, that it is not necessarily something I support. But that would evoke all sorts of knee jerk shallow comments on here. The “I thought you were a Christian” claim is as useless as the “I may be a Christian, but I’m also a fallible human claim”. Excuses for a complex life.

        When Jesus said to make disciples of all nations, the word nations didn’t mean governments. And regardless of which government is in charge, the Christian still has the same charge.There can be no such thing as a Christian government. For one example, just read the Bible on how to treat your enemies. I merely point out that there is a difference between government and individuals. Although the Bible states we are subject to the government as long as what it is doing is in accordance with Biblical teaching. The worth of such an ideological should keep Christians from conforming to the patterns of this world as we are commanded to do. Government being a “pattern”. Alas, we see how that works with humans and what a negative affect noncompliance has on the faith.

        And why is pointing out what is going on in the world talking tough? It is merely a statement of what is going on in the world and something others are ignoring. The informed voters of this nation do not live in a vacuum minus the world. (I would hope:)

        With few exceptions, the best diplomacy has always been at the end of the gun. One could argue that diplomacy has “facilitated” more wars to happen than it has stopped.

        Today’s compassion seems best suited to a one and one situation.
        Note the change in the EU since Paris? Is it a knee jerk xenophobia? Or a predictable correction of thought, based on reality?

        I can truthfully say I have never started a war either.

  10. repenting lawyer says:

    I doubt that using no fly list as prima facie bar would violate due process if there was adequate judicial review. Type of review is real issue, on this I have no idea what review is provided. I probably should stop since I taught Ashford Ad Law and I not sure if I said anything relevant or if I did if he remembers.

    • TexasAnnie says:

      What is Ad Law?

      This issue is interesting because there is a real divide in this country about the meaning of the second amendment. On the one hand, if someone’s name is inappropriately placed on the no-fly list, the list may be corrected. On the other hand, if the name is appropriately placed, do we consider the subject that is too dangerous to fly also too dangerous for observing any other constitutional rights?

      And what kind of “judicial review” is necessary to deny a constitutional right because we fear another might do us harm?

      • TexasAnnie says:

        As usual, repenting lawyer, Gerard jumps in with his ASSinine remark. But in case you also found my meaning ambiguous my intended Socratic inquiry is: Can a subject considered too dangerous to fly therefore be denied a constitutional right?
        (The answer, of course, must be NO!)

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, Flying is not a constitutional right but interstate travel is. Crandall v Nevada, Edwards v California. Administrative action that interfere with claimed constitutional rights, like property, can be taken in advance of hearing in emergencies, destruction of diseased animal, seizure of insolvent banks, is allowed in advance of hearing because of emergency. I do not see 2nd Amendment Cases as different. If one is prima facie too dangerous to fly then he is too dangerous to own a gun. We have typically barred the mentally ill and convicted felons the right to own or buy arms. These seem analogous situations that have survived attack under State gun right provisions of constitution. I am think of an opportunity at administrative level to challenge listing in a trial type hearing with APA review Annie, big problem is going to be national security info.
        Obviously, Annie, committed mental patient are usually denied access to move public forums though this does limit free speech rights. As to ProfGH, I trust he is a better chemist than a lawyer.

      • TexasAnnie says:

        I don’t like your answer, repenting lawyer. Your description of Administrative Law seems unfair. I do trust your opinion is worthwhile, it just ‘seems’ that constitutional rights are premier. (Anecdotally, my husband and I take in stride the fact that our adult but infantile daughter doesn’t get a right to vote. In every instance of every circumstance he and I, as her guardians, decide and act on her behalf, but we aren’t permitted to tell the election commissioner how we KNOW she wants to vote!)

      • repenting lawyer says:

        Texas Annie, right is trumps when established but when and how it is establish and vindicated is another matter. While there was once a right to resist an unlawful arrest , it is gone in most places. One must submit and then litigate though unlawful arrests violate both Federal and State Constitutions, similarly with unlawful searches and seizures. When the Japanese were advancing on Manila McArthur ordered the petrol stocks of CalTex destroyed, SCOTUS held destruction lawful in emergency and no compensation required under taking clause.

  11. NE Voter says:

    Please allow me to clear up the presumably unintended obfuscation about the federal “lists.” After 9/11, the government hurriedly assembled No-Fly and Watch lists.

    Over time, the Department of Homeland Security (still a woefully poorly-named department) and the TSA were able to better differentiate between true No-Fly terror suspects and less-scary “better safe than sorry” schmoes.

    Now, before you rise up into a full “What does HE know . . ” lather, let me leave you with this:

    I have been on the List since 2003. First No-Fly (which was a YUGE pain in the a–), later matriculated to Watch. Which persists to this day because once on, one can never get off.

    What Ashford and others are proposing relates to the 14,000 to 16,000 true No-Fly peeps who the government has strong reason to believe are some bad to the bone folks.

    What Ashford and others are proposing has NO effect on my right to purchase firearms. Yes, I confirmed this yesterday with law enforcement (not an elected official’s office).

    I can’t speak to apocryphal anecdotes about the late, great Ted Kennedy or Steven Hayes. I speak only for myself based on my personal experience as one of Uncle Sam’s VIPs.

    You’re welcome.

    • TexasAnnie says:

      Well thank-you NE Voter for clarifying between the ‘No-Fly’ and ‘Watch List.’

      But are you sure, “once on, one can never get off?”

      And yet still, don’t you believe Ashford’s proposal to be unconstitutional even for the no-fly perps?
      Your comment seems cavalier for such a serious circumstance.

      • NE Voter says:

        Not cavalier at all, Annie. I consider the mere suggestion of suspension or revocation of any Constitutional right to be a most serious matter that no one should take lightly.

        The idea of “lists” like the one I am on is that they create a presumption that is not rebuttable. SS alludes to this in his discussion of the apparent lack of due process. Though I do not see how the process would be anything but unduly burdensome, I imagine Congress could narrowly tailor the presumption by allowing an aggrieved party a full and fair opportunity to rebut the presumption.

        Not saying I like that idea — I’m uncomfortable with the notion that any person should bear the burden (not to mention the time and expense) of proving to his or her government that he or she is “entitled” to exercise any right granted by the Constitution.

        Shortly after learning that I was “listed,” I was informed of the “once on-never off” rule. That certainly may have changed without my knowing it. After all, I was placed ON the list without notice and have never received any response, much less written, to my own written inquiries to TSA.

        At one time TSA offered a procedure through which a listed person could send certified copies of one’s driver’s license/birth certificate/passport/professional licenses in an effort to “relax” travel restrictions and impediments. I did this in late 2005 or early 2006, of course, and received no response or acknowledgement from TSA, though I did send the package via certified mail so at least I have the return receipt for my own records (heh heh).

        So there you go.

      • TexasAnnie says:

        Hmmm. Comparatively, I guess I shouldn’t take offense to the TSA rolling off my daughter in her wheelchair without allowing me an opportunity to explain that she does not use language. They soon motion for me to approach to be sure, but they should be more ‘humane’ in their regard for a mother & child.

        I like your description of YOUR constitutional rights!

      • NE Voter says:

        Thank you, Annie. We also have a daughter with a disability so I’ve always read your posts with interest over the years.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        Texas Annie and NE Voter, You both assume that 2nd Amendments prevents the creation of reasonable classes of person not entitled to own all or some types of fire arms. It does not say that and would be contrary to the history of American gun law. You certainly would not contend that if a parent made a gift of a loaded weapon to a six year old who shot someone, that the parent could defend a negligence case on the grounds that preventing parents from give weapons to small children violates those children rights under 2nd Amendment. SCOTUS changed reading of 2nd Amen. in DC and Chicago cases but it certainly did not bar classification and it has not settled on level of scrutiny. The issue here is does the class of persons on no fly list constitute a class that can be regarded as too dangerous to own weapons. Under the reading you are both giving the Amendment how do you justify withholding weapons from prison inmates.
        Probably pontificating but old professor occasionally escapes.

    • TexasAnnie says:

      By all means, pontificate! I just got in from my weekly karaoke singing and need to wind down. So if you’re up, I’m up! I’m not pro nor con on the 2nd Amendment. I don’t want to take away anyone’s rights or even perceived rights. But on the other hand, I don’t do guns, myself. What is your take on the clause: “a well regulated militia” within the second amendment?

      • TexasAnnie says:

        …and you NE Voter, had piqued my curiosity. Have we met? You’ve read my posts with interest? Well if I have failed to explicitly deliver my message it is succinctly this:
        The Unicam has and will defy it’s constitutional duty with regard to special education if nobody dogs ’em. And it was Governor Nelson who set in motion a plan to cheat disabled children not only of their federal rights under IDEA, but literally of their Nebraska constitutional right to a public education. Governor Johanns often got blamed for Nelson’s dirty deeds, but he did not cause them. If he is guilty of anything, he is guilty of letting them flow. On the other hand, Heineman caused special education negligence and DEATHS at BSDC. He vetoed funding for medical services at the institution the previous year, stating those medically fragile beings could call an ambulance if needed! It’s horrific!!! Yet so few Nebraskans even care that it’s happening there, or, if they do care, they don’t express it to the extent of, say, whether or not the governor picks a new election commission to their satisfaction…

        NE Voter, will you please call your state senator and ask why education spending needed to increase over the next biennium at exactly 3% in every category EXCEPT SPED. (Which will only need an increase 2 1/2%.) Seems arbitrary. That’s how the differential discrimination all started back in 1995 i.e. Ben Nelson’s LB742.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        Texas Annie, The first comment on @nd Amendment was by St. George Tucker, a VA lawyer while it was pending. He read the Amendment as limiting the right of Congress under its power to regulate the militia from disarming the State, but he was of the view that Congress could require all weapons to be in armories. He views were influential in the tradition because he put his con law views in the American edition of Blackstone. On that reading it is difficult to find a personal right or any limitation on the States. The self defense argument for gun rights under State Constitutions post dates 2nd Amendment. A right to be armed to revolt is a nonstarter. When English history is examined there is scholarship on both sides of the armed populace issue, latest I say was an article on Edward I. When nine non historians are arguing about English history I am a sceptic. I think the Court should have stayed with traditional reading, though I find it funny that Scalia thought English wanted to be armed to put down a Catholic revolt, which I did not see as a current danger.

      • TexasAnnie says:

        Thanks for your input, repenting lawyer. This might sound like heresy, but I don’t read a personal gun right in the 2nd Amendment. But it’s not unusual for lawyers/courts to “read” with their knowledge and experience what the plain meaning of the actual words is not expressing. So I have taken the personal gun right in stride…like my daughter’s “right” to vote!

      • TexasAnnie says:

        And now I have read about St. George Tucker but only on the Wikipedia. It Street Sweeper wakes up and provides an Open Friday, let’s discuss more of Tucker’s view.

  12. Application Deadline still MIA says:

    Application Deadline? As a voter and tax payer I would like to know. If new applications are really being reviewed, give a deadline to the press. Taylor Gage did not give a deadline with the reporter. There is not one on the website.

    They need to take guidance from how the last election commissioner vacancy was done in Sarpy County with the retirement of Kay Forslund in ’09. Google it, the Governor’s office gave a deadline to apply.

  13. Yargle Blargle says:

    So… following this same line of thinking… every vote to restrict abortion rights is a vote against the Constitution and the 14th Amendment.

  14. Dear Mr. Sweeper says:

    After one week of public disclosure what are you hearing on Commissioner post? Have you been in contact with Mr. Gage? Inquiring minds appreciate keeping us informed.

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