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A new blog meme

I have a feeling we’ll be seeing the phrase It takes a village… …idiot a lot in the future:

Folks, when I see someone in a position of authority get all proprietary like that towards their little minions, it makes me want to jet to Bed, Bath & Beyond for some goosedown pillows, and then duck into Home Despot for some roofing tar. How have people with opinions like that been allowed to walk the streets, much less been put into positions of responsibility? Why are little tin Napoleons with such Skinnerian ideas of social engineering even allowed access to pens and paper, let alone robes and gavels?

31 Responses to “A new blog meme”

  1. persimmon Says:

    I tried to post a reply over at Tamara’s blog, but the type-the-letters-you-see-above thing kept insisting I type them again, as though I was not typing them correctly.

    Anyway, I don’t understand how cases like this reach upper-level federal courts. This should have been handled by the local school board and local courts. Both parties have been working to disempower school boards and centralize education decision-making at state and federal levels, and I suppose that is why federal courts are weighing in on education issues more and more. Mike Ragsdale and George Bush have both scored successes in taking power from local school boards and giving it to the feds or to unelected quasigovernmental authorities, which means less power for the people and more for political parties.

    Conservatives who recoil at the prospect of empowering Bill Clinton’s Dept of Ed happily hand over the keys to Bush, and those most vocal against No Child Left Behind will be tickled to use the extra powers it has given to the federal government when their gang is in office again. Partisan politics steadily erodes individual power.

  2. tgirsch Says:

    You know, devoid of context, I don’t see what’s so terribly wrong about what the Ninth wrote. But let’s figure out where the problem is. Are you arguing that parents do have a right to be the exclusive provider of sexual information to children? The only way to assure that is to lock them in the basement and never, ever let them out.

    Or is it the part about parents not having the right to override the public school curriculum? You’re not seriously saying that one single, solitary parent ought to be able to derail the entire school curriculum just because their hyper-prudish sensibilities are offended?

    You don’t like the curriculum? Elect a school board who will change it, or put your kid in private school. Or, you know, teach your kids at home so that they’re smart enough to recognize that there’s more to life than what they’re spoon fed at school.

    Or you could piss and moan and whine, like this chick’s doing. I can understand that this broad doesn’t like the fruits of democracy, but I’m surprised to see you agreeing with her.

  3. tgirsch Says:

    As an aside, it’s funny how conservative-libertarian types abandon the “if you don’t like it, leave” logic when they’re the ones who don’t like it.

  4. SayUncle Says:

    First, libertarian types don’t like public schools. Second, if this was curriculum and not some staffer’s experiment, you may have a point.

  5. Xrlq Says:

    What TGirsch said.

  6. Xrlq Says:

    SU: what does it matter whether this was curriculum or some random staffer’s experiment? If the staffer violated curriciulum, there may be some recourse under state law, but I can’t see anything of constitutional significance turning on that.

  7. SayUncle Says:

    It’s one thing to tell kids that you put the hoohoo-dilly in the cha-cha and that’s what makes a baby. It’s another to ask them questions regarding what makes their naughty parts tingle.

  8. Xrlq Says:

    Ah, yes, the Tingle Amendment. How could I have forgotten?

  9. Xrlq Says:

    Or am I looking at this backwards, i.e., the school didn’t violate the Tingle Amendment so much as exceed the scope of its enumerated power under the Cha-Cha Amendment?

  10. Tam Says:

    “I can understand that this broad doesnít like the fruits of democracy,”

    Yet I tolerate you all the same.

  11. SayUncle Says:

    Must be some fallacy that democracy makes right, I suppose. Hey, back when people had slaves, that was the fruits of democracy. Or some shit.

  12. kevin Says:

    I actually have to agree with XLRQ here. The school board might be wrong to have such classes, or they may not have handled the permission slip thing correctly, or the teacher may have gone outside of the school district’s acceptabel bounds, but none of those are constitutional or legal issues.

    No parent has the right to demand that a school system teach their preferred curriculum. The schools ar epublic instutitons accountable to elected officials who are accountable to the voters. The public has, through its representatives, decided what the curriculum should be. parents may remove their children form such school, may ask to rmeove their kids form such classes, and may agitate to change the policy through democratic means. But there is no constitutional right to dictate to the public what it must do. as long as the curriculum is does not violate seperation fo church and state or discriminate against protected classes, there is no reason for a court to be involved. This is a matter of policy, not of rights.

    You know, for someone who disparages the living constitution and the ight to privacy, you seem quick to involve the courts when you think that the dmeocratic results are less than optimal. show me where these kids are having their rights denied, and then maybe we can talk. better yet, show me where the Constittuion gives individuals the right to dictate the results of a democratic process. I cnanot even begin to fathom where that “right” would come from.

  13. SayUncle Says:

    No parent has the right to demand that a school system teach their preferred curriculum.

    never said they did. I said that maybe they should have a say in telling the school not to ask their kids if they think about sex, particularly when there’s question that the consent form didn’t disclose the whole thing.

    And I’ve never disparaged the right to privacy, only said it’s not enumerated in the constitution.

    better yet, show me where the Constittuion gives individuals the right to dictate the results of a democratic process

    How about the whole constitution itself? Slavery comes to mind. As do unpopular rights, like pleading the fifth. Not to mention that if you exclude individuals from the democratic process, it’s not a very democratic process, now is it?

  14. tgirsch Says:

    Tam:

    Back atcha, babe! ūüôā Love the “boomstick” reference, btw. Shop smart!

    Uncle:

    And Iíve never disparaged the right to privacy, only said itís not enumerated in the constitution.

    And said so in a manner that indicates that you don’t think it’s worthy of constitutional protection.

    How about the whole constitution itself?

    Umm, where in the constitution does it give a single individual (or even a choice few individuals) such a right?

    Not to mention that if you exclude individuals from the democratic process, itís not a very democratic process, now is it?

    Who was so excluded?

  15. tgirsch Says:

    By the way, at issue here is not the rightness or wrongness of what the teacher did, but the rightness or wrongness of the Ninth’s ruling. And I see nothing wrong with the Ninth’s ruling. Obviously you do, or you wouldn’t have highlighted Tam’s fisking thereof.

  16. kevin Says:

    Uncle

    “How about the whole constitution itself? ”

    What, you mean like the right to privacy? And more on topic: no. The Constitution sets out specific places/thihgs/situations that the democratic process cannot mess with. As long as the policy doesn’t cross those lines — and there is nothing in the story that suggests it does — then this is a matter of BAD POLICY not a mater of CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS. You are arguing that theire is a due process right for parents to dictate to the school what can and cannot be taught. That was the issue before the Court. So when you say parents h”have a right” in this case, you are saying that individual parents have a constutional right to overrule the democratically elected school board’s school policies, evne thogh those policies trespass on individual rights not at all.

    “I said that maybe they should have a say in telling the school not to ask their kids if they think about sex, particularly when thereís question that the consent form didnít disclose the whole thing.”

    That’s a matter fo POLICY not a matter fo CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS. If you think that the Court ruled incorrectly, then you are either arguing that

    a) The COurt should have just gone ahead and made up a new rule without precedent, statute, or Constituional underpinning.

    or

    b)That there is a due process or privacy based right for a parent to dictate to a democratically choosen school board wehat the cirrciulum must be.

    So which is it?

  17. SayUncle Says:

    And said so in a manner that indicates that you donít think itís worthy of constitutional protection.

    I don’t? Perhaps this thread in which you commented isn’t clear enough?

    Umm, where in the constitution does it give a single individual (or even a choice few individuals) such a right?

    He said individuals, the sum of which would make up part of the democratic process.

    Who was so excluded?

    Who said someone was? I was commenting on the, well, lack of clarity of Kev’s comment.

    And I see nothing wrong with the Ninthís ruling

    I wouldn’t either, if it were a case in which parents were trying to get the school to teach what they wanted. However, they were trying to get the school not to ask little kids about their boners.

    Obviously you do, or you wouldnít have highlighted Tamís fisking thereof.

    I quote Oliver Willis some too. It doesn’t mean I agree all the time or completely.

  18. SayUncle Says:

    Kevin, when have i said anything in this thread about the Constitutionality of this incident? Go ahead, I’ll wait.

    As for a. or b., there is an option c.:

    The court made the right ruling in the wrong case.

  19. SayUncle Says:

    And if I were feelling particularly smarmy, I’d the constitutionality can be questioned as such:

    The fed .gov has no enumerated power to regulate education.

  20. tgirsch Says:

    By the way, does it bother anyone at all that Xrlq, Kevin, and I are all on the same side of an issue?

    Anyway:

    Rather than “not worthy of” protection, I should have said “not currently protected.” Poor choice of words on my part. In other words, you point out that the right to privacy isn’t specifically enumerated as a way of saying that the right isn’t constitutionally protected, i.e. it doesn’t really exist.

    He said individuals

    And clearly meant “a few” rather than “a majority.” When individuals act “collectively” they become groups, not individuals; and when the group gets big enough, they become a democratic majority. It’s clear Kevin wasn’t talking about that, but about a few individuals. But you knew that, and chose to ignore it in favor of a smarmy point.

    Who said someone was? I was commenting on the, well, lack of clarity of Kevís comment.

    No, you were intentionally misappropriating his comment to make some “point,” although I’m not sure what, since Kevin clearly wasn’t arguing for excluding anyone, and since you (now) claim that you weren’t arguing that anyone was being excluded.

    However, they were trying to get the school not to ask little kids about their boners.

    Which, again, is an issue for the local school board, not for the federal courts.

    I quote Oliver Willis some too. It doesnít mean I agree all the time or completely.

    Float like a butterfly…

    The fed .gov has no enumerated power to regulate education.

    They don’t have an enumerated power to maintain an air force, either. What’s your point?

  21. tgirsch Says:

    The fed .gov has no enumerated power to regulate education.

    Which means that, according to you, the Ninth circuit shouldn’t have been involved in this case at all.

  22. SayUncle Says:

    Rather than ďnot worthy ofĒ protection, I should have said ďnot currently protected.Ē Poor choice of words on my part. In other words, you point out that the right to privacy isnít specifically enumerated as a way of saying that the right isnít constitutionally protected, i.e. it doesnít really exist.

    No, I think it is under the purview of Amendment 9, to be honest.

    Poor wording on Kev’s part doesn’t mean I can’t be smarmy.

    They donít have an enumerated power to maintain an air force, either. Whatís your point?

    that it does lots of stuff it’s not authorized to do.

  23. SayUncle Says:

    Which means that, according to you, the Ninth circuit shouldnít have been involved in this case at all.

    Well, duh. Since education has been federalized it makes sense that it would be a federal issue.

  24. Xrlq Says:

    SU:

    Must be some fallacy that democracy makes right, I suppose.

    It’s not up to the courts to decide right vs. wrong, just legal vs. illegal or, in this case, constitutional vs. unconstitutional.

    Hey, back when people had slaves, that was the fruits of democracy. Or some shit.

    Try the latter. I don’t think slavery would have survived long in a democracy, i.e., if the slaves themselves got to vote. In any event, the current constitution prohibits slavery, but is silent to bonerisms.

    Kevin, when have i said anything in this thread about the Constitutionality of this incident?

    When you linked favorably to Tam’s goofy post decrying the ruling of the “Ninth Circus” on its constitutionality. If your intended point was “Tam wouldn’t know a constitution if it bit her on the ass, but constitutionality aside, this is a really crappy curriculum,” you might want to make that position a little clearer.

    The fed .gov has no enumerated power to regulate education.

    I agree, at least as to Congress (federal courts are another issue). Good thing this curriculum was designed according to state law instead.

    TGirsch:

    In other words, you point out that the right to privacy isn’t specifically enumerated as a way of saying that the right isnít constitutionally protected, i.e. it doesnít really exist.

    I think the whole point of the Ninth Amendment was to prevent people from equating that “X is not a constitutionally protected right” with “X is not a right at all.” If the Bill of Rights had never been ratified, no one would argue that people don’t have rights. They’d just have to base their theories of rights on something other than the Constitution.

    They don’t have an enumerated power to maintain an air force, either.

    They don’t, but they do. Article I, Section 8 authorizes Congress to “raise and support Armies,” while saying nothing about what such armies should be called. Presumably, the framers of the Constitution did not contemplate that two or more armies would both be called The U.S. Army. A trickier problem arises if you argue that the air force is really a navy; Art. I, Sec. 8 only provides one of those.

  25. Xrlq Says:

    Well, duh. Since education has been federalized it makes sense that it would be a federal issue.

    It hasn’t been, but if the made up federal “right to privacy” applied to boner inquiries in school, that would be a federal issue.

  26. SayUncle Says:

    Xrlq, Tam’s rant was of the nanny state variety not the constitutional variety. So, to be clear on my position:

    This incident was about asking kids about their turgid little nubbins, which pissed me off.

    The court ruled there is no due process to override asking kids about their throbbing members, which pissed me off.

    I think the court’s position would have been more convincing if it wasn’t about asking kids about what makes their willies silly. (i.e., if this was a group of parents saying ‘don’t teach my kid about sex in a factual manner’ or ‘intelligent design should be taught’ vs. what the case is).

    Good thing this curriculum was designed according to state law instead.

    So, why not have this go through state court? just askin’.

    Final note: On the general silliness of the language here: SayUncle: Legal analysis with dick jokes!

  27. kevin Says:

    “The fed .gov has no enumerated power to regulate education”

    Accept that this is not about regulation. It is about whether or not there is a Constitutional right of parents to dictate school curriculum. That’s the issue the 9th was taking up, which is why it was in the Federal Court to begin with — the parents raised a Federal constitutional issue.

    “The court ruled there is no due process to override asking kids about their throbbing members”

    Whihc means that you do think the court should have ruled that there is a Constitutional right base don due process to allow parents to veto anything in a curriculum that angers them. So why do you insist that you aren;t taking about the Constitutionality of the issue??

    ” Legal analysis with dick jokes!”

    Law school would be more fun …

  28. tgirsch Says:

    Xrlq:

    Regarding the air force, I missed a key word: “standing.” From Article I, Section 8:

    To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years

    If you’re allowing for original intent here, the intent was to prevent the federal government from maintaining a standing army of any kind (air force, army, or otherwise). You certainly couldn’t have long-term military projects like the Joint Strike Fighter if you stayed constitutionally true and stayed under the two year limit.

  29. SayUncle Says:

    Kev,

    Due process can occur outside of federal court, can it not? Since, as Xrlq stated, the curriculum was determined by state law.

    Tom,

    They do appropriations every year. I’m sure they consider that less frequently than two years.

  30. tgirsch Says:

    Uncle:

    But they grant multi-year military development contracts much longer than two years, and have no explicitly-listed authority to do so.

    And whatever else happens outside of court, at issue here is what happened in the court.

  31. Free Advice § Lean Left Says:

    […] When Kevin, Xrlq, and I are all united against you, you probably need to rethink your position. […]