Tuesday, September 12, 2006

We live in truly absurd times.

We live in truly absurd times, when one can be put on trial for transporting someone to medical care.

See my short take on the Pima County LP weblog for more...

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Want to buy some vinyl siding?

I just recieved an automated phone call from the Bill Johnson for Congress campaign, a recording of Joe Sweeney associate, creep, convicted thief, and registered Republican Russ Dove talking about how out-of-touch the Democratic Party leadership is and declaring single-issue candidate Johnson the peoples' choice.

I don't know why Johnson is in the race. Perhaps xenophobic Republican frontrunner Randy Graf has a mastermind in his camp and this is a public-relations ploy to dissociate himself from outright crazies like Dove, Joe Sweeney, and Roy Warden. Or maybe it's an effort by the xenophobic camp to make bigotry seem bipartisan and thus mainstream. Either way, Bill Johnson is a true bullshit candidate.

Three things are for certain: I'm not a registered Democrat--in fact, I'm a known active Libertarian Party member--I don't live in CD8, and the Johnson campaign has money to burn. Not being able to get the voter file from the Democratic Party, they seem to have resorted to a blanket telemarketing list. Paid, automated calls are cheaper than mailings but still rather expensive en masse.

A fool and his money are soon parted. When that fool is also a bigot, the separation is socially desirable.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

"If Huffman wins the election, I'm voting for Nolan..."

Amid the fracas caused by the Republican National Committee's intervention in support of the wishy-washy Steve Huffman, the top challenger to neo-Know Nothing Randy Graf in the CD-8 primary, comes this statement of dissent from a Republican candidate who will, for now, go unnamed.

Will the R's pull together? No? Good.

Do you have the right to presumption of innocence?

Do you have the right to presumption of innocence? Until recently in Arizona, if you found yourself in the unfortunate situation of having to have killed someone in self-defense, the answer was "no." Justfication defenses, such as self-defense, were considered affirmative defenses, meaning that the burden of proof was on the defendant to prove show that the preponderance of evidence indicates that he was justified.

The "Castle Doctrine" bill, explained in detail by libertarian David Hardy, changed that. Signed into law earlier this year, it requires prosecutors, once a justification defense has been presented, to disprove it beyond a reasonable doubt. Since whether or not one has committed murder or manslaughter, which are crimes, and not justifiable homicide, which is not, can hinge on the matter of justification, this is merely a removal of a loophole that could be used by the State to circumvent our right under the Constitution and as free people to be innocent until proven guilty.

The question of whether or not those who acted in self-defense also have this right will soon be going before the Arizona Supreme Court; according to the Tucson Citizen two divisions of the Arizona Court of Appeals have ruled oppositely on the matter.

While our legislature, where the fringe is the mainstream everyday, is usually only good for entertainment, on occasion it gets a no-brainer, like the Castle Doctrine, right. Simple justice demands that the Supreme Court not uphold a cutoff date on one's right to true presumption of innocence.