From the right, Geoge Will quite properly skewers the those who would keep military recruiters off campus in the name of free speech (not that I am a big fan of military recruiters these days–they serve a corrupt and venal master these days, but that is not their fault):
Thirty-six law schools and faculties challenged the constitutionality of the law on the grounds that “forced hosting” of military recruiters constitutes a “crisis of conscience” over compelled speech. They said they are compelled to communicate the false message that they support the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, and their hosting also subsidizes the military’s expression of its view that openly gay persons are not suited for service.
(Do those professors object to public financing of political campaigns, which compels taxpayers to subsidize political speech they oppose? Don’t ask.) Monday’s opinion was written by Chief Justice John Roberts, who, during last December’s oral argument, blandly said of the schools’ desire to discriminate against the military, “You are perfectly free to do that, if you don’t take the money.” On Monday Roberts’s shredding of the law schools’ arguments included a tartness that betrayed impatience with law professors who cannot understand pertinent distinctions.
The Law Schools wanted to practice civil disobedience without paying the price for disobedience. Won’t work. An essential element of civil disobedience is the willingness to to pay the price: go to jail, loose the grant, suffer beatings at the hands of the police, be tortured in Bush’s concentration camps, whatever.
Concomitantly (I’ve waited years to work this into a sentence!), Richard Cohen nails the intellectual deceipt of the current Federal Administration:
It will be nearly impossible in the next several months to avoid the phrase “culture of corruption.” It is of Democratic vintage, coined to take the sins of Jack Abramoff, former Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham and maybe some others and visit them on all Republicans running for office, especially congressional incumbents. Strictly speaking, it’s a bit of a smear. But if it applies anywhere, and it does, it’s not to corruption having to do with money, it’s to corruption having to do with thought. The Bush administration is intellectually corrupt.
Some of this corruption is induced by the inability to keep religion in its place. The president suffers mightily from this. After just eight months in office, George Bush drew a line between acceptable and unacceptable stem cell research and based it entirely on religious views that had nothing to do with science. Destruction of the cells was likened, as so much is nowadays, to the supposedly overriding issue of abortion or, as it is sometimes put, the “culture of life.”
That culture, as applied by the Bush administration, holds that what works is what ought to work. So, for example, the official policy of the United States government is the promotion of sexual abstinence (outside of marriage), which is all right in and of itself but not as a substitute for a workable policy of population control and HIV-AIDS avoidance. The latter should entail sex education and, of course, the use of some sort of contraceptive device, particularly (for AIDS prevention) condoms. The Bush administration eschews that approach, exhorting the young and the randy just to eschew sex. That approach works until it does not. Then catastrophe hits.
The current Federal Administration wants to act on its FantasyLand as if it were real, disregarding all–and any–evidence to the contrary.
Unfortunately, wishing don’t make it so. And our children and grandchildren will pay the price for the misdeeds of the current Federal Administration.