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 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 26
Free Speech 1st Amendment Page 2 of 21    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21)

Frankly the 1st Amendment is there to protect ALL speech not PC speech. Libs used to say "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it" What happened to those Dems?


They got tired of being called traitors.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 27
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Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/3/2009 12:37:49 AM

Webster v. Reproductive Health Services (1989) gives the Federal and State governments the right to withhold funds from health companies that don't do as they're told. Basically, Humana could probably continue sending out those mailers, but then the Federal government would have the right to stop sending Medicare money through Humana.


I don't know what you pulled that assertion out of, but the Court didn't say in Webster that the government has "the right to withhold funds from health companies that don't do as they're told." Or anything even remotely like that. Webster's not even a 1st Amendment case--the main issue was whether a Missouri abortion statute that didn't follow Roe's strict trimester scheme was constitutional.

The Court in Webster never evaluated the section of the Missouri law that covered public funding and the right to counsel women to have abortions, because the appellants decided to drop their claim regarding that section. "The controversy over § 188.205's prohibition on the use of public funds to encourage or counsel a woman to have a nontherapeutic abortion is moot . . . [S]ince appellees no longer seek equitable relief on their § 188.205 claim, the Court of Appeals is directed to vacate the District Court's judgment with instructions to dismiss the relevant part of the complaint with prejudice." See Webster at 511-513.

It seems you're more than a "little off." And even if there were a decision that seemed to be on point, it wouldn't make it reasonable to state flatly, as you do, that it would give the government "the right to stop sending Medicare money through Humana." That's not legal analysis--it's just your thoroughly uninformed guess.
 Elmenreich
Joined: 9/23/2009
Msg: 28
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Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/3/2009 12:53:57 PM
You're looking at the small picture. This seems to be a reoccurring theme. Webster affirmed the State's right to withhold money, and that's why the HHS is allowed to do this.

Quite frankly, if what the HHS did was illegal, why doesn't Humana just sue them? Answer this question, or else you basically have no case.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 29
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Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/3/2009 2:56:16 PM

Webster affirmed the State's right to withhold money, and that's why the HHS is allowed to do this.


Why don't you show us where the Court says that in Webster? Could it be that you can't, because it said nothing like that? I already quoted the Court's finding that because the plaintiffs had dropped their 1st Amendment claim about section 188.205, the issue was moot. As the Court mentioned, that means there was no longer any "case or controversy" before it.

The original post was about Senator Baucus' statement that his Finance Committee planned to investigate a letter mailed by Humana that claimed legislation Baucus had introduced would be harmful. The article the poster cited mentioned efforts by the Medicaid/Medicare division of HHS to "crack down" on Humana, which Baucus approved of, but which Senator Mc Connell said were an improper attempt to stifle freedom of speech for political reasons.

The senators only made those statements Sept. 21 and 22. The article didn't specify what HHS was doing. Even assuming Humana's done nothing so far, and assuming also that HHS has waived sovereign immunity so that a company like Humana could sue it, to claim that proves the outcome of any potential 1st Amendment issues is laughable. If the failure of every plaintiff to file a suit within a week or so after something had damaged them proved they had no legal claims, we wouldn't need courts at all.

You're making things up as you go, and you know it. If you want to have silly arguments for their own sake, I'll let you do that with someone else.
 Elmenreich
Joined: 9/23/2009
Msg: 30
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Posted: 10/4/2009 7:21:34 PM
Um, the original statute called for the withholding of funding to clinics that counsel women on abortion when her life wasn't in danger, remember?
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 31
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/5/2009 2:33:05 PM

They got tired of being called traitors.


That's not much of an excuse really. You are a better man than that.


Nonsense. The social contract runs both ways. I can only afford to support your rights to the extent that you support mine.

What's sad about my having to say that is that y'all do such a good job of bird-dogging the liberals, but you won't listen to a goddam thing about the scary chances that your "team" takes with our common future. So say anything that you flippin' want, but when you turn every legitimate social concern or call for rectification of the injustices that are a side-effect of our system into a communist plot, eventually we get it. If all you want is the privilege to run roughshod over the rights and sensibilities of the minority, you cannot also expet them to stay loyal.

So I might be willing to defend your rights, but that is simply and only because I value my own. However, it seems clear to me that by and large you do not care about mine in the slightest, and that when it comes to our disagreements, you have no respect whatsoever for anything I as a "dreaded liberal" might say--especially if it's true.

This isn't directed at you personally, PH, though based on your comments the shoe could well fit. But you asked what happened to the support for our common heritage of freedom and I can tell you that when you make it your exclusive province, you cannot expect the support of those you exclude.

So stop it with the red-baiting, all of you, or live with the division that your deliberate choice of words has caused.

As those who claim moral superiority, I will happily follow your lead in this. Are you a better man than me? I sure as hell hope so for both our sakes.
 GolfCoast
Joined: 3/17/2008
Msg: 32
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/5/2009 2:55:32 PM
I'm with Ace, split the country. My side will take the poor states. It really is not useful to pretend anymore, we have different worldviews, and clearly your side wants a kinder gentler health care system, like Cuba's, or the UK's, or Canada lol lol lol.

I've taken to confronting my friends, ex friends actually, with this challenge, "how could you elect, support, agree with someone who describes people who disagree with them racists?" I would never, ever support someone who attacked your group/beliefs with such hollow argument. You think people who don't support healthcare change, Afghan or Iraq, bailouts, etc are racists? Really?

You should be very, very ashamed. You should take responsibility for dividing this once great country.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 33
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/5/2009 7:51:14 PM
Nevermind. If I keep on with this conversation I'm liable to say things I'll regret. Nothing personal PH, but I really am sick of selfish jerks of all stripes who can't find the heart to be kind or the patience to try to understand perspectives other than their own--including me.

Enjoy the day! There's too much beauty still left here to focus on the bullshit.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 34
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Posted: 10/6/2009 9:34:01 AM

BTW, I was against McCain/Feingold too since it restricts free speech.


The Supreme Court agreed with you in 2007, when it shot down an important section of that law in FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Life.

I'd like to see the context of that Jefferson quote, because the 51% take away the rights of the 49% every day under our laws. Whether that violates the Constitution depends on what right is infringed, and by how much.

And, of course, it depends on what right the Court's in the mood to concoct at the time. If abortion really is a constitutional right, the Court's never really even come close to explaining where and how the Constitution grants it. Right next to the clause where it grants the right to leap tall buildings with a single bound, maybe.

Zoning and environmental decisions cost landowners a lot by preventing them from putting land to its most profitable uses. But with the stroke of a pen, a local government may take away 80 or 90% of the value of your property, and not owe you one red cent. Why? Because the majority whose votes the state zoning laws reflect said so.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 35
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/6/2009 10:21:17 AM

Whether that violates the Constitution depends on what right is infringed, and by how much.


No, no, no! Good grief!

If the unrestrained exercise of one person's right violates the rights of another, either the legislature or the Courts must make a rule to strike the balance that protects both. Zoning laws strike a balance between what you can freely do on your property without it unduly degrading the value of mine.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 36
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/6/2009 10:24:22 AM

You should be very, very ashamed. You should take responsibility for dividing this once great country.


Truer words about your style of discourse and it's inevitable effect were never spoken, GC. Take a good long look in that mirror, my friend.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 37
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/6/2009 2:12:15 PM
A very interesting article, PH.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 38
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Posted: 10/6/2009 3:13:29 PM

No, no, no! Good grief!


My statement that whether a law violates the Constitution depends on what right it infringes, and to what extent, is accurate. I'll rephrase it.

Ordinary state laws are enacted by a simple majority vote, whether by initiative, or by the people's representatives in the legislature.

These laws almost always infringe some constitutionally guaranteed right of the minority that opposed them--to equal protection, or to some liberty guaranteed by the 14th Amendment, to free speech, to free exercise of religion, or to any other right under the U.S. Constitution that the Court has applied against states.

But none of these rights is absolute. For example, a municipal ordinance that prohibits billboards in certain areas is not necessarily a law "abridging" the freedom of speech in violation of the 1st Amendment. And Prop 13 makes some homeowners pay much higher property taxes than others. It's flagrant economic discrimination by a majority of homeowners against a minority. Yet it doesn't violate the 14th Amendment's guarantee of equal protection of the laws.

A state law doesn't necessarily violate the Constitution even if it deprives someone of a fundamental right, or if it singles out a historically disadvantaged minority. For example, a state can deny a convicted felon the fundamental right to vote. And for a good enough reason, a state can deny a black person a particular job, purely because of his race.

If you think I've misstated the law, please cite some legal authority.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 39
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/6/2009 4:58:54 PM

But none of these rights is absolute. For example, a municipal ordinance that prohibits billboards in certain areas is not necessarily a law "abridging" the freedom of speech in violation of the 1st Amendment. And Prop 13 makes some homeowners pay much higher property taxes than others. It's flagrant economic discrimination by a majority of homeowners against a minority. Yet it doesn't violate the 14th Amendment's guarantee of equal protection of the laws.


We're saying the same thing in different ways. The state has to have a rational basis for laws that place some at a comparative disadvantage with respect to others. It's got to be more than "because we said so."
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 40
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Posted: 10/6/2009 10:23:36 PM

It's got to be more than "because we said so."


Correct. An arbitrary law is a contradiction in terms. Only the Supreme Court gets to say "because we said so" and get away with it. It also gets to make the rational basis standard of review harder to meet, whenever the law it's reviewing disadvantages a grievance group five of the Justices are pulling for.

One thing I'm sure of, just as the Framers were--to ignore the restraints the Constitution imposes on government, as this administration thinks nothing of doing, is to pave the way for tyranny. Why is this Court, which has been so anxious to interfere with the Executive's conduct of the war against jihadism, now so reluctant to prevent its gross disregard for the Constitution? Maybe not enough time has passed for appeals to work their way up.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 41
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 10/7/2009 4:35:36 AM
Well, Match. I think we've both just been trumped here.

Next topic!
 Elmenreich
Joined: 9/23/2009
Msg: 42
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Posted: 10/8/2009 10:12:41 AM

I'm with Ace, split the country. My side will take the poor states. It really is not useful to pretend anymore, we have different worldviews, and clearly your side wants a kinder gentler health care system, like Cuba's, or the UK's, or Canada lol lol lol.
That's just stupid and wrong. Obama's health care bill is nothing like those, more like Germany's where there's a public option for everyone (instead of just the old, ex-military and disabled). A public option hasn't killed private insurance in Germany, despite Germany's health system being in place for over a century.
 fzrhusker
Joined: 10/8/2005
Msg: 43
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 2/8/2010 12:02:26 PM
Think Government Is Corrupt? You May Face 10 Years In Jail

South Carolina forces “subversives” to register with the authorities or do hard time

Think Government Is Corrupt? You May Face 10 Years In Jail 080210top2

Paul Joseph Watson
Monday, February 8, 2010

Subversives who think government is corrupt and should be controlled by the people face 10 years in prison and a $25,000 dollar fine if they fail to register with authorities in South Carolina, in another chilling example of how free speech and dissent is being criminalized in America.

The state’s “Subversive Activities Registration Act” is now officially on the books and mandates that “Every member of a subversive organization, or an organization subject to foreign control, every foreign agent and every person who advocates, teaches, advises or practices the duty, necessity or propriety of controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing the government of the United States … shall register with the Secretary of State.”

Of course, the right to overthrow a government that has become corrupt, abusive and completely unrepresentative of its electorate is enshrined in the Declaration of Independence – that’s how America came to be a Republic in the first place – advocating or teaching that the people should “control” the government via their elected representatives is a basic function of a democratic society, but this law effectively makes it a terrorist offense.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness,” states the Declaration of Independence.

Under the sweeping terms of the law, members of tax protest organizations, the Tea Party movement and the States’ Rights movement based in South Carolina are all domestic terrorists if they fail to register their dissent with the authorities.

It is important to stress that the notion this law somehow only applies to “Islamic terrorists” is completely at odds with the fact that federal and state authorities now consider the main terror threat to be from informed American citizens exercising their constitutional rights in opposition to the big government agenda they are being subjected to.

As we saw with the MIAC report and a plethora of similar training manuals which were leaked over the last decade, police are being trained that libertarians, gun owners, Ron Paul supporters and anyone who is mildly political is a domestic extremist and a potential terrorist – these people are the real target of the subversives list in South Carolina.

The infamous Phoenix Federal Bureau of Investigation manual (page one, page two) produced in association with the Joint Terrorism Task Force listed “defenders of the U.S. constitution” and “lone individuals” as terrorists. Will anyone in South Carolina who defends the Constitution, the very bedrock of what America stands for, have to register with the authorities unless they want to be locked up for a decade?

Of course, since nobody is going to register as a “subversive” with South Carolina authorities, their failure to “comply” with the regulation will later be used against them as a means of eliciting criminal charges, in what represents a clear end run around the First Amendment.

The government isn’t going to just come out all guns blazing and ban free speech, they are simply going to make anyone who refuses to register for permission a criminal for failing to adhere to a separate mandate.

Just like people in places such as New York and Chicago were told that they had to get a license to purchase a gun – at first the process was a mere inconvenience but now the licensing process means they have to jump through 200 flaming hoops and the second amendment has effectively been outlawed in these cities.

They won’t hesitate to pull the same tricks with the First Amendment, and it’s already happening with calls to license Internet users and force them to get government permission to run a website.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 44
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Posted: 2/8/2010 9:27:25 PM
fz,
I think your author's being a little bit too alarmist. Here's why.

This is the part of South Carolina's "Subversive Activities Registration Act" he quoted:

“Every member of a subversive organization, or an *organization subject to foreign control,* every foreign agent and every person who *advocates, teaches, advises or practices* *the duty, necessity or propriety*of *controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing* the government of the United States … shall register with the Secretary of State.”




Compare it to this, which is Title 18, section 2386 (B)(1) of the U.S. Code:

" The following organizations shall be required to register
with the Attorney General:

*Every organization subject to foreign control* which engages in
political activity . . . [or] civilian military activity; and

Every organization, the purpose or aim of which, or one of the
purposes or aims of which, is the establishment, *control, conduct,
seizure, or overthrow* of a government or subdivision thereof by the use
of force, violence, military measures, or threats of any one or more of
[these]."


and this:

Sec. 2385. Advocating overthrow of Government

"Whoever knowingly or willfully *advocates, abets, advises, or teaches*
*the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety* of overthrowing or
destroying the government of the United States . . . by force or violence, or by the
assassination of any officer of any such government . . .
shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty
years, or both . . . ."


Both these federal statutes have been around in pretty much this form since 1940. Whoever drafted the South Carolina law obviously used a lot of the language from them. Without analyzing all this in detail, a few things strike me.

First, the state law (at least the part he quoted) doesn't have the "knowingly and willfully" language. That's put in to require clear intent--you can't violate the federal statute just by being negligent.

Second, under the federal law it's the organization that must register. And individuals break the federal law by calling for actions which are the purpose of an organization like that. Under the South Carolina law, it's the *members* of these organizations who have to register.

Third, and most important, under the federal law a person has to say not just that we should overthrow the U.S. government, but that we should do it by force, violence, or assassinating some officer of it. Under this state law, if you're a member of an organization that calls for the overthrow of the U.S. government--even if not by force or violence--you have to register.


He's suggesting the state law violates the First Amendment. I'm not sure we have the whole text of it, but from what he's quoted, I very much doubt it. The law just requires registration. If it made it a crime just to be a member of an organization that called for the overthrow of the U.S.--especially even if not by force or violence--that would be a different story.
 fzrhusker
Joined: 10/8/2005
Msg: 45
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 2/9/2010 6:01:42 PM
Match you are definitely right. What I found funny was the fact that tehy need to pass it a t as state level and used the MIAC report as the basis for it. Since I am a returning veteran and potential threat.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 46
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Posted: 3/4/2010 11:38:44 PM
^^^^^Good for the More Center and good for the judge. Sounds like he made the right call. The principal was a fool not to phone the school board's lawyers first, to find out what she could and couldn't do. As for the board's wasting taxpayers' money, I hope they turn the rascals out!
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 47
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 3/5/2010 2:14:42 AM
Yep. And good for you, PH, for making your voice heard.
 AceOfSpace
Joined: 5/28/2007
Msg: 48
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 3/5/2010 7:45:33 AM

Suppose the school board ordered an across the board removal of ALL banners, would the guy still have a case by saying they had been up in his classroom for 30 years? Would he have a case by saying his banners were of historical significance?

If you were on the school board, would you spend hundreds of thousands of dollars of tax payer money on an APPEAL especially considering your actions were one sided censorship and already threw untold funds away on an avoidable situation?


My personal preference would be for a policy that eliminates these problems. I would tell teachers that their right to free expression is something that they can exercise all they want on their own time--but not in the classroom. His banners would only be of historical sinificance if there were some that did not appear to advocate a particular religious view.

However, the school district wanted to take it further, and as long as the overall message to students remains that the state is neutral with respect to the religious practices of individuals, I don't see any problem with it. But the principal blew it. Now there is a sense that the district is hostile to a particular religion, which defeats the legitimate purpose of the policy, which is to allow teachers to model appropriate expression of differing viewpoints.

The school board should drop the suit, fire the lawyer, and probably fire the principal.
 fzrhusker
Joined: 10/8/2005
Msg: 49
Free Speech 1st Amendment
Posted: 3/5/2010 7:51:19 AM
As soon as people realize that the word god is a "Generic Term" for a creator then we can move past this time consuming false argument. Do not all religions refer to the word god in some way.
Allah Akbar= God is great., mmmm even the Muslims use the word God.


# the supernatural being conceived as the perfect and omnipotent and omniscient originator and ruler of the universe; the object of worship in ...
# deity: any supernatural being worshipped as controlling some part of the world or some aspect of life or who is the personification of a force
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 50
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Posted: 3/5/2010 8:25:02 AM

Suppose the school board ordered an across the board removal of ALL banners, would the guy still have a case by saying they had been up in his classroom for 30 years?


I doubt that would cause a problem, because it would apply evenly to every teacher, regardless of view. And the school board would have a valid reason--conserving public funds by eliminating a likely cause of expensive lawsuits. I don't know the historical significance argument in this context, but I don't think most courts would buy it.
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