Monday, May 23, 2016

Is it summer yet?

The weather says yes.

Some quick news:

1.  Slate's Dahlia Lithwick says Trump's SCOTUS choices are bad for women:

The list consists of six federal appeals court judges (all appointed by George W. Bush) and five state supreme court justices (all nominated by Republicans). Most are men. All are white. All are extremely young. Almost all of them have impeccable conservative credentials. The cast of characters appears to be crafted to assuage the worries of movement conservatives such as George Will, who wrote last March that “there is every reason to think that Trump understands none of the issues pertinent to the Supreme Court's role in the American regime, and there is no reason to doubt that he would bring to the selection of justices what he brings to all matters—arrogance leavened by frivolousness.” ...
Trump’s shortlist isn’t surprising, since the presumptive Republican nominee has already suggested that women who have abortions should be punished and affirmed that he will nominate justices who want to overturn Roe v. Wade. But it’s still terrifying in a Supreme Court term in which both reproductive rights and statutorily guaranteed birth control are on the docket. It seems even more terrifying in a moment when Oklahoma has just passed a galactically silly, unconstitutional bill making it a felony to provide an abortion in the state, which Gov. Mary Fallin just vetoed. Donald Trump may want to do away with Roe v. Wade once he’s elected, but Oklahoma lawmakers are already working to turn that dream into a reality—you might say they’re making America great again. 
 2. One of the short-listers, tweeter and Texas Justice Don Willett, gave this commencement speech over the weekend.

3.  Notorious RBG's son is doing some cool things in the music world:

Weaving together historical, ethnic and cultural musical heritage with contemporary sensibilities is precisely the sort of projects that are emblematic of the indie Cedille (say-DEE) Records, whose mission is “to enhance the world’s catalog of recorded music by releasing artists’ explorations of new and underrepresented compositions and documenting their important interpretations of standard repertoire,” according to the president, James Ginsburg, who founded the not-for-profit label in 1989 while in law school at the University of Chicago and, as best he knows, is still considered a student on leave.
That indeterminate status is no longer a concern to his mother, Associate United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She and her late husband are responsible for the bug James caught when they took him to see Michael Tilson Thomas conduct the New York Philharmonic performing Igor Stravinsky’s “The Firebird” in New York, where the family lived, when he was 8 years old.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a fan of classical music and opera, which she sometimes attended with her colleague, the late justice Antonin Scalia.
James Ginsburg’s musical judgment and production skills are formidable enough to have earned his label nominations and Grammy Awards, as at the most recent ceremony, where the relentlessly inventive Eighth Blackbird ensemble won its fourth for their “Filament” album, and another Cedille ensemble, the New Budapest Orpheum Society (an updated name of the troupe of Jewish musicians in Vienna roughly 1890–1930) received a nomination for the album “ As Dreams Fall Apart: The Golden Age of Jewish Stage and Film Music .” The Society was founded at the University of Chicago by music professor Philip Bohlman , who ferreted out some of the songs for “Dreams” in the Austrian censors’ office in Vienna. “The Nazis were great record-keepers,” Ginsburg said, “so now we can bring this great music back to life.”

4.  Paula McMahon reports on a guy pointing a loaded shotgun at an IRS agent who came knocking at his door.  Maybe the heat got to him:
Hacker is now facing a criminal charge of using a deadly weapon in his encounter with the government employee. Hacker's lawyer, Michael D. Weinstein, said it was an innocent misunderstanding.
"My client thought it was strange that the IRS was coming to see him. He thought it was a scam and he exercised his right to defend himself," Weinstein said.
Hacker had left the house, on the 2000 block of Northeast 31st Avenue, by the time criminal investigators went back to interview him about the alleged assault.

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