"Ultimately, all the evidence suggests that Justice Alito is not the even-tempered judge he presented to the Senate in 2005. He’s not a person concerned with hearing and weighing all the arguments. He’s the fervent conservative activist who applied to Ronald Reagan’s DOJ and wrote the words set out below, and he always has been. Justice Alito told the truth seeking that DOJ position, and he lied to get the Supreme Court seat he now holds."
All of the Supreme Court justices who rule in favor of criminalizing abortion will have lied in their senate confirmations. When they do they should be impeached.
New York Times
It is the result of many factors, including elected officials who played down the threat posed by the coronavirus and resisted safety measures; a decentralized, overburdened health care system that struggled with testing, tracing and treatment; and lower vaccination and booster rates than other rich countries, partly the result of widespread mistrust and resistance fanned by right-wing media and politicians.
Excellent combination of reporting and presentation. Sobering statistics.

Roe v. Wade Links

This is grim. I'm finding it hard to share articles here on the weekends like I have been lately. It looks like the Republican project to criminalize reproductive health care and deny body autonomy to women by overturning 50 years of settled law is going to happen.

The Atlantic: Alito’s Plan to Repeal Roe—and Other 20th Century Civil Rights
In the Court’s religious-freedom decisions related to the coronavirus pandemic, and in its choice last year to allow Texas to nullify the right to an abortion, you can see the outlines of this new legal regime: On the grounds that it constitutes a form of religious discrimination, conservatives will be able to claim an exemption from any generally applicable rule they do not wish to follow, while imposing their own religious and ideological views on those who do not share them.
Even if you have sympathy for their religious views, the consequences of this change to the daily lives of women are monsterous.

The Atlantic: Liberty No More
None of us can claim to understand with certainty the mysteries of human life. As medicine and science have advanced, the moral questions about abortion that we must contemplate have only grown more complicated. But none of that changes the fact that government control of women’s bodies—interference from the state that obliterates women’s freedom and in some cases ends their lives—represents a monumental blow to human rights.
Right now—before this decision is final—states are criminalizing the distribution of necessary medecine because they could potentially be used for abortion.

NPR: In Texas, abortion laws inhibit care for miscarriages
"The challenge is that the treatment for an abortion and the treatment for a miscarriage are exactly the same," said Dr. Sarah Prager, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Washington in Seattle and an expert in early pregnancy loss.
We should be using the power of the federal government to ensure women everywhere have access to the care they need in spite of states that want to hurt their citizens.

Charlie Warzel: Anti-Abortion Republicans Won. Why Are They Still Mad?
“Winning” appears to be less engaging than the threat of danger lurking behind every corner. And when the right does win, what seems to animate its adherents even more than the win is their opponents’ response to it.
This is just one reason we see more stories in the media denouncing peaceful protests than stories enumerating the consequences of this supreme court decision to people's daily lives. The way the media covers this ensures a constant state of feeling aggrieved among the people who are winning at every level of government.

Popular Information: These 13 corporations have spent $15 million supporting anti-abortion politicians since 2016
But the figure makes clear the central role of corporate money in the imminent reversal of Roe — including money from many corporations that claim to be champions for women's rights and equality.
Politicians who support criminalizing women's health do not lose financial support from institutions. Our power as consumers is weak, but at least we can be aware of which companies say one thing and do another.

All of this is just grim and unfortunately it feels like a beginning instead of an end.
Washington Post
"Congressional Republicans have vowed retaliation against companies for opposing Georgia’s voter suppression bill and for cooperating with the congressional investigation into Trump’s coup attempt."
We should find a word for ‘using the power of the state to silence critics’. And maybe a word to describe a party that advocates for that.
The Texas Tribune
"Over eight days, starting April 8, troopers conducted more than 4,100 inspections of trucks. Troopers didn’t find any contraband but took 850 trucks off the road for various violations related to their equipment. Other truckers were given warnings, and at least 345 were cited for things such as underinflated tires, broken turn signals and oil leaks."
Oh man, I can’t imagine the amount of paperwork generated for this vanity political project. Keeping law enforcement busy at least!
Excellent parody of Scott McCloud’s 2008 comic about the wonders of Google Chrome. This is about the danger Chrome poses to our privacy. (And I’m obligated to say modern Firefox is a good alternative.)
The AP (Alex Pareene)
"These people on this ascendant right don't just have different ideas about the role and function of journalism; they don't just believe journalists are biased liberals; they don't just believe the media is too hostile to conservatives; they are hostile to the concept of journalism itself."
When journalism upsets the right’s outrage pipeline you don’t get rational criticism and debate.
Washington Post
"Authoritarian and fascist communities, this is what they always go for, they always burn the books. It actually shows the power of books. If they didn’t have any power, they wouldn’t be burning or banning them. So that’s one thing to remember and celebrate: The power of books."
Cancel culture is at it again.
"The main actions include creating a clean indoor air action plan, optimizing fresh air ventilation, enhancing air filtration and cleaning, and engaging the building community by communicating with occupants to increase awareness, commitment and participation."
I hope this conversation filters down (sorry) to our local schools and university. This must be a difficult problem to solve in older buildings—or it's a difficult problem to add to a budget. I haven't seen any signs of this conversation here yet. Also, check out this article in Science from last August: The air investigator.
Washington Post
"We’re constantly told the American people hate Washington dysfunction. Yet McConnell knows he can cheerfully threaten something this obscenely destructive without fearing any political downside."
Republicans elect people to cause dysfunction in the government. As long as Republicans deliver conservative judicial appointments, corporate welfare, and tax cuts for the wealthy there's no serious threat of losing support. Breaking everything else in government is the plan—not a symptom of a method of working. Getting mad about this situation in public like Brian Schatz is a reasonable response that I'd like to see more.
NBC News
"Fox and CNN are not different flavors of news, they are different things entirely. News organizations with any legitimate claim to that title do not keep important information from the public based on which party it benefits. CNN — or primetime MSNBC — may be opinionated, but they remain fundamentally fact-based. Fox does not."
Fox is an imitation of the news style but it's something different in substance that makes viewers less informed about the world.
Reminded of this saying by the way right wing media frames every minor complaint as an existential threat and asks, "why aren't people acting violently about this right now?" knowing a portion of their audience will make it happen and they'll never face consequences.
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