Melancton Smith Archive

Obesity Can Be a Disability, Says European Court of Justice



The European Court of Justice has just issued an opinion holding that obesity can be a disability requiring employers to “take appropriate measures . . . to enable a person with a disability to have access to, participate in, or advance in employment, or to undergo training, unless such measures would impose a disproportionate burden...
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Obamacare’s Tax Credits in Jeopardy



Today, we received dueling circuit court decisions on Obamacare’s tax credit component. The D.C. Circuit held (2-1) that the tax credits do not apply to health insurance purchases through an exchange established by the federal government, whereas the Fourth Circuit held that they do. If the subsidies are not available for insurance purchased through exchanges established by the feds, then Obamacare...
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Why Hobby Lobby Is Not an Assault on Women



The reactions from the progressive side of the fence to Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. was stunning. The spin is that American women have been stripped of fundamental constitutional protections. Sandra Fluke at The Washington Post’s blog claimed that “[t]he Hobby Lobby case is an attack on women.” The White House lamented that the...
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What Would Obama Have Done with the Leaks in the Pentagon Papers?



“I’m sure that President Obama would have sought a life sentence in my case.” That is what Daniel Ellsberg says would have happened had Obama been in power in the 1970s. His interview is available at Wonkblog. As readers might recall, Ellsberg gave a reporter a copy of United States—Vietnam Relations, 1945–1967: A Study...
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Verizon Surveillance: Do We Feel Safer?



Senator Rand Paul has a provoking essay over at the Guardian. He takes a look at some of Senator Obama’s stances on civil liberties and then examines what he has done as president. The focus is on the hub-bub surrounding Verizon phone records. Of course, the matter is bigger than just one company. The...
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SCOTUS Upholds Taking of DNA from Arrestee



Today the Court decided Maryland v. King, and held that if the police have probable cause to make an arrest for a “serious offense” they may also as a matter of course use a cotton swab to take the arrestee’s DNA. The Court said that this was a legitimate police booking procedure akin to taking a suspect’s...
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SCOTUS Hears Arguments on the Voting Rights Act



SCOTUS heard arguments today regarding the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which permits the federal government to block even minor election changes made by certain jurisdictions covered under the law, if those changes are deemed to reduce minority voting power. The covered jurisdictions, mostly in the South, are those with a...
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What Does DOJ Really Think About Gun Control?



According to a DOJ memo obtained by the NRA, Washington really knows that assault weapons are infrequently used in crimes and that banning high capacity magazines really will not change anything. These are just drums beat by the administration to get the public in a frenzy over the “epidemic” of gun violence. So what...
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Gun Companies Cease Sales to Government in States Where Second Amendment Is Not Respected



Over at The Blaze, there is a growing list of companies that have stopped selling firearms and ammunition to law enforcement agencies in states that are restricting the Second Amendment. Here is the statement from Barrett that explains its reasons for stopping sales to certain governments: Barrett opposes those who are illegally disarming the...
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Drone Strikes on Americans



If you have a few minutes, take a look at a government white paper obtained by NBC news on the lawfulness of lethal attacks on U.S. citizens with attachments to terrorists. NBC has this summary of the test for ordering a killing: the confidential memo lays out a three-part test that would make targeted...
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