Just Use The Standard Talk Show Thought Process

Everybody keeps telling me how horrible 2016 was. Celebrity deaths, violence, the cancellation of The Jim Gaffigan Show. I get it, it was a bad year.

It’s hard for me to think in those terms. In January, I couldn’t walk without horrible pain. In February I went to Seattle for my Uncle’s funeral. While there it was clear that I could hardly stand up, let lone walk for more than a minute without swelling and the most intense pain I have ever had. I say that as a man who has gone through a shattered hand, three bouts of kidney stones and an infected pilonidal cyst (trust me, do not Google that). By the end of February the pain was – up to that moment – the worst I have ever had, and had essentially crippled me.

img_3990Yesterday I ran 2+ miles on the elliptical with no pain. None.

For me, 2016 will always be the year that my knee was finally fixed. Sure, it was painful – the worst pain I have ever had was after the surgery – but it was worth it all. I can walk my son to school. That alone means more to me than so many other things. We can play catch, throw a Frisbee, go to the park. He’s getting a new bike for Hanukkah. Now we can go ride together.

I have my mobility and my health back. I can walk.

For me, 2016 had it’s down moments, but it will always be a good year.

In November, Californians voted, albeit barely, in favor of Prop 66. The idea was that we would “speed up” the process by which Death Row inmates are executed by increasing the number of lawyers who are allowed to take on their appeals cases. The theory being that if there were more available lawyers, the process would speed up and criminals would be executed. I had a feeling that it would never stand up even if it were passed.

Why? Because the Courts interpretations of the 6th Amendment make it so that just because we expand the list of available lawyers doesn’t make them “effective.” You also knew that the Legislature opposed this Ballot Prop and that the moment it was certified (if it passed at all, which was no sure thing), it would be halted by legal challenges. Well… yesterday the Ballot Props passage was certified, and within minutes the California Supreme Court halted its implementation to allow for further legal challenges.

122116-lethal-injectionNow, there are two ways to look at this. First will be the standard Conservative Chat Show Host talking point, backed up by a dozen or so callers who will say “I agree with what you said,” which is: “Why do we bother to vote if the Courts are just going to overturn us?” I guarantee you that anybody on the Right side talking about this story today will have that phrase work its way into the conversation.

But here’s the problem – if we passed a Ballot Prop saying that a certain religions belief was now criminal, what we we expect to have happen? The Court overturn it, of course. If we passed a Ballot Prop saying that marriage can only be between like racial members, what would we expect to happen? The Court to overturn it, of course. If we pass Ballot Props that are not in line with the current interpretation of the Constitution and the words “effective counsel,” we should expect to be protected by the Courts.

The second way to look at this is simply that Prop 66 was never going to fly in the face of the current interpretation of “assistance of counsel for his defense” under the 6th Amendment’s interpretation of the meaning of “effective counsel.” In other words, we – as voters – never bothered to educate ourselves enough to understand the real meaning of what we voted for. We were told it would speed up executions. “Great!” we voted. Except that even the people who wrote it had to know that it would never fly. I almost have to believe that this was a “set up” in the sense that since they had to know that, it’s simply a way to rile up some people by blaming the Courts for what was an obvious legislative flaw.

The reason that California’s Death Penalty is essentially unused is because the Legislature wants it that way. They have passed laws, signed by Governors and confirmed by Judges that we then confirmed to the bench and then re-elected, which draw the process out almost interminably. If you want to change the way the Death Penalty is applied in California – and for the record I believe that we as corporate Californians do not wish to do so – change the Legislature and the Governor. Failing that, no Ballot Prop will ever speed up or “restore” (whatever that means) the Death Penalty in California. We won’t ban it outright, because there may always be another Charles Manson. But we aren’t going to use it. Take that to the bank. And it’s not the Courts fault – it’s ours.

Or you can huddle in the non-thinking Chat Show Caller Zone and blame everybody but ourselves for not being wise and educated about what we are voting on.

The City of Los Angeles has a lot of problems. Crime, bad streets, homelessness, like most California cities a big pension problem and so on. So naturally the City leaders have decided that they need to spend $10 Million of taxpayer money on a “defense fund” for illegal immigrants. Just let that sink in for a minute and then again the next time you’re in LA trying to navigate crappy streets or get LAPD to help you after a crime has been inflicted upon you. This is yet another example of the lunacy spreading around California after the Electoral College dashed their last delusional hope of not having Trump as President. The City of Los Angeles would rather spend it’s taxpayer money defending illegal immigrants than educating its students.

122116-arctic-drilling-1Outgoing President Obama, one month from leaving office, has invoked a 1953 law which allows the President “from time to time” to take Federal lands out of energy production. In this case, along with Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, the President has permanently banned drilling along the Atlantic and Arctic coasts. The Administration claims that this is a part of President Obama’s environmental legacy and it may well be. He believes that because this is a law, not an Executive Order, that no future Presidents will be able to undo it. If there is an attempt to change the law, Democrats will block it in the Senate. How much do you want to bet that back in 1953, nobody in Congress actually read the law before they passed it only to find out what was in it 63 years later?

Lastly for today, the #Calexit idiots have opened an Embassy in Russia. That’s it, that’s the punch line. A California embassy in Russia. The same people who are filled with hate and rage about Russian “hacking” are reaching out to them to support an independent Peoples Republick of Kalifornia.




Posted on December 21, 2016, in 6th Amendment, 8th Amendment, CA State Legislature, Constitution, Dave's Knees, Execution, Federalism, Immigration, Obama, Social Issues, Taxes and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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