In 2011, revolutions across the Middle East carried the torch of nonviolence and deposed three entrenched dictators and shook the throne of several kings and emirs. This is known as the Arab Spring, an awkward metaphor which misses the phenomenon by limiting it to Arabs. […] What is remarkable is that probably the most violent region of the world, the Middle East, was capable of rallying around a nonviolent philosophy of historical change in 2011.
—  Chibli Mallat, an author, professor, and human rights proponent, on the philosophy of nonviolence, constitutionalism, and the Arab Spring

No one’s telling Christians they have to “believe” in evolution and abandon creationism. However, they are telling teachers (and bakers, pharmacists, health care providers) that they have to do their jobs.

If being a Christian is more important to you than being a competent professional, then quit. Your religious freedom is constitutionally protected, and there are a lots of jobs out there which will allow you to entertain your backward religious beliefs without retarding a child’s education.

Bernie Sanders Voting Record on Civil Rights

Click here for 21 full quotes on Civil Rights OR background on Civil Rights

  • Equal pay for equal work by women. (Mar 2015)
  • Bush’s tracking citizens’ phone call patterns is illegal. (Jun 2006)
  • Voted YES on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act. (Feb 2013)
  • Voted NO on Constitutionally defining marriage as one-man-one-woman. (Jul 2006)
  • Voted NO on making the PATRIOT Act permanent. (Dec 2005)
  • Voted NO on Constitutional Amendment banning same-sex marriage. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted NO on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted NO on constitutional amendment prohibiting flag desecration. (Jun 2003)
  • Voted NO on banning gay adoptions in DC. (Jul 1999)
  • Voted NO on ending preferential treatment by race in college admissions. (May 1998)
  • Constitutional Amendment for equal rights by gender. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 93% by the ACLU, indicating a pro-civil rights voting record. (Dec 2002)
  • Rated 100% by the HRC, indicating a pro-gay-rights stance. (Dec 2006)
  • Rated 97% by the NAACP, indicating a pro-affirmative-action stance. (Dec 2006)
  • Recognize Juneteenth as historical end of slavery. (Jun 2008)
  • ENDA: prohibit employment discrimination for gays. (Jun 2009)
  • Prohibit sexual-identity discrimination at schools. (Mar 2011)
  • Endorsed as “preferred” by The Feminist Majority indicating pro-women’s rights. (Aug 2012)
  • Enforce against wage discrimination based on gender. (Jan 2013)
  • Enforce against anti-gay discrimination in public schools. (Jun 2013)
  • Re-introduce the Equal Rights Amendment. (Mar 2007)

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Political elections do not choose leaders of society. Rather, they are an exercise in which groups of people choose individuals who will assist them in looting other groups of individuals, those folks who were unfortunate enough not to be able to elect their own political strongman. The process can be downright blatant, as is the case in African and Asian countries, or it can be relatively subtle as it is in the United States, where the trappings of ‘constitutionality’ and “rule of law” hide many of the more nefarious goings on.
—  William Anderson
Constitutionality of Stephen Harper's travel ban proposal called into question | Metro News
A proposal by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to ban travel by Canadians to areas controlled by terrorist groups is constitutionally suspect and could also run afoul of international law, according to one expert.

“There is no human right to travel and visit ISIS. That is not a human right in this country,” Harper said.
‘You are also ordered not to post any further information about the [plaintiff]’
That’s part of what an injunction in Van Valkerburg v. Gjoni (the “Gamergate” case, for those in the know) says -- in violation of the First Amendment.

In Van Valkerburg, a Massachusetts trial court issued an order providing that Gjoni is

Ordered not to post any further information about the [plaintiff] or her personal life on line or to encourage “hate mobs”

That order, we argue, is a clear violation of the First Amendment, for reasons we explain in the brief, which I’m also quoting below. A court can’t order someone to just stop saying anything about a person. Certain narrow categories of speech about people are constitutionally unprotected (such as true threats of violence, speech that is intended to and likely to incite people to imminent criminal conduct, and possibly certain kinds of speech that reveals highly private information). But this order goes vastly beyond any such narrow First Amendment exceptions.

anonymous asked:

I guess the question is more, if someone wanted to get a more nuanced understanding of liberalism, where should they start?

I’m not sure whether you mean liberalism as in “republican democracy, liberty, Constitutionalism, private property, individualism, etc.”, or liberalism as in “democracy, equality, welfare state, civil liberties, peace and diplomacy, etc.” The latter, which can be typified by the Democratic Party, I refer to as “social liberalism” to avoid confusion. I’ll give you some reading recommendations for both. The book I’d most highly recommend if you want to know more about social liberalism, and the type of liberalism I identify with, is Leonard Hobhouse’s “Liberalism”. I consider it a masterpiece, though part of it is tainted with the racism of the day, unfortunately. Beyond that, I’d say John Rawls’ “A Theory of Justice” which is widely agreed upon to be the single most important contribution to social liberal political philosophy ever, a position I’d agree with.

But, for the sake of thoroughness, I’m including some of the most important texts in each ideological tradition. If you’re interested, I’d advise you just to read about the books through summaries or their Wikipedia pages to understand their basic ideas, and then you can actually read from them if you’re interested from there.


The Basics (1650-1800):

  • Thomas Hobbes - “Leviathan”
  • John Locke - “An Essay Concerning Human Understanding”
  • John Locke - “Two Treatises of Government”
  • Montesquieu - “The Spirit of Laws”
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau - “The Social Contract”
  • Adam Smith - “The Wealth of Nations”
  • Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay - “The Federalist Papers”
  • Edmund Burke - “Reflections on the Revolution in France”
  • Thomas Paine - “Rights of Man”
  • Mary Wollstonecraft - “A Vindication of the Rights of Woman”

Intermediate (1800-1960):

  • Benjamin Constant - “The Liberty of Ancients Compared with that of Moderns”
  • Alexis de Tocqueville - “Democracy in America”
  • Frederic Bastiat - “The Law”
  • John Stuart Mill - “On Liberty”
  • Max Weber - “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism”
  • Friedrich von Hayek - “The Road to Serfdom”
  • Karl Popper - “The Open Society and Its Enemies”
  • Isaiah Berlin - “Two Concepts of Liberty”

Advanced (1960-today):

  • H.L.A. Hart - “The Concept of Law”
  • Jurgen Habermas - “The Structural Transformation of the Public Square”
  • James M. Buchanan and Gordon Tullock - “The Calculus of Consent: Logical Foundations of Constitutional Democracy”
  • Ronald Dworkin - “Taking Rights Seriously”
  • Robert A. Dahl - “Democracy and Its Critics”

Social Liberalism

  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau - “Discourse on Inequality”
  • Thomas Paine - “Agrarian Justice”
  • Thomas Hill Green - “Lectures on the Principles of Political Obligation”
  • Henry George - “Progress and Poverty”
  • Herbert Croly - “The Promise of American Life”
  • Leonard Hobhouse - “Liberalism”
  • John Dewey - “Democracy and Learning”
  • John Maynard Keynes - “The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money”
  • Karl Polanyi - “The Great Transformation”
  • John K. Galbraith - “The Affluent Society”
  • Isaiah Berlin - “Two Concepts of Liberty”
  • Richard Hofstadter - “The Age of Reform”
  • John Rawls - “A Theory of Justice”
  • Ronald Dworkin - “Taking Rights Seriously”
  • Will Kymlicka - “Liberalism, Community, and Culture”
  • Richard Rorty - “Achieving Our Country”
  • T.M. Scanlon - “What We Owe To Each Other”
  • Amartya Sen - “The Idea of Justice”

Tidal Pool 02 – Huntington Beach State Park, Murrell’s Inlet, SC, August 20, 2015

There are people who are constitutionally prohibited from squaring up to the way things are,

And constitutionally compelled to live in a fantasy world where things are what they are supposed to be, to their way of thinking.

“Delta Dawn, what’s that flower you have on? Could it be a faded rose from days gone by? And did I hear you say, he was meeting you today, to take you to his mansion in the sky?”

Mark Twain observed that “people seldom fight a winning fight against themselves.”


It helps to know what we are up against.

The First Spiritual Law states: We have to live transparent to ourselves.

Everything flows from there that can flow from there.

The Second Spiritual Law states: In order to live transparent to ourselves, we have to perceive and receive ourselves without judgment, will, or opinion, and allow compassionate, mindful, awareness to work its slow magic over the full course of our life.

The people who want to know what the rest of the spiritual laws are don’t fully appreciate what is required by the first two.

crocordile asked:

Elizabeth and Darcy (and other p&p characters of your preference) read either the Silmarillion or the LoTR. Who are their faves? Do they cosplay?

Oh, wouldn’t have thought of that. Let me think.

Elizabeth: Beren, perhaps? He makes a joke out of losing his hand to a wolf, I mean, what a hero. She’d cosplay Andreth, since she looks Bëorian and Andreth is one of the few women with an established personality.

Darcy: you know, I think he would admire Morwen a ton, and probably identify to a certain extent. Also has a lot of sympathy for Manwë’s impossible situation with Melkor. Wouldn’t cosplay anyone because he’s constitutionally incapable of being anyone other than himself.

Jane: hobbit stan. Frodo is her favourite and she cosplays Elanor Gamgee.

Bingley: adores Sam to the point of being slightly annoying about it. Cosplays Beleg just because he likes the bow.

Mrs Bennet: barely skims either. She cosplays Melian, but nobody can figure out who she’s supposed to be, and Mrs Bennet keeps forgetting the names.

Mr Bennet: really amused by almost everyone, cosplays Lobelia Sackville-Baggins to the horror of Mrs Bennet. Elizabeth and Lydia think it’s hilarious. Darcy wants to disapprove, so he keeps avoiding him to avoid smiling.

Lady Catherine: Éowyn! She’s badass and marries well. Cosplays Tar-Telperien with great success and little effort.

Georgiana: passionately identifies with and cosplays Rían.  

Lydia: Tulkas, because it amuses her, and because Wickham is also Tulkas and she thought he’d pay attention to her if they matched. She’s actually a much better one than he is.

Kitty: she was going to be Nessa (for the same reason as Lydia), but when she found out that Lydia was also going as Tulkas, she thought it was gross and just went for Tar-Vanimeldë who has fun and doesn’t get killed and wears nice clothes. (Neither she nor Lydia actually read them, but they get the highlights from the others.)

Caroline: She’s above such things.