("You will, Marc, you will...")
Politics: Elizabeth Sifton writes a lucid analysis of the Pledge of Allegiance case for The Nation. She has a keen eye for finding the real problems that have been obscured by all the pieties - on both sides of the debate. Almost as critical of Michael Newdow as she is of his opponents, Sifton accurately captures the feeling of a number of liberals (myself included) that he has forced, in her apt words, "a major battle on a minor front." And at the worst time possible. Michael Newdow: the Janet Jackson of atheism.
But the article is perhaps most enlightening in its portrait of conservative darling Antonin Scalia. The line on Scalia, the consolation prize if you will, has always been that he's a judicial genius - sure, he's a blatantly unethical ideologue, but at least he's got such a brilliant legal mind that we can't deny he belongs on the Court, right?
Based on the glimpse we get in this article, I no longer believe the hype. The Scalia comments quoted here betray a bizarre, I would almost have to say willful, misunderstanding not only of American history but of past Supreme Court cases. Antonin, dude, if you don't know 'em, who's going to help Clarence cram?
The next time you hear conservatives denouncing "activist judges," just remember that Tony's ideological cart is clearly pulling the judicial horse. When a Supreme Court justice starts bemoaning the emergence of democracy, we're all in serious trouble.
Comics: Tim O'Neil on Crossgen's Chuck Dixon wankfest American Power: "I think that reeking stench wafting up from Florida is the pungent smell of flop sweat."
Gone and Forgotten on reader fashions in the 30th century - or the 1970s. Oh, the pain... the merry, merry pain...
Steven at Peiratikos has been amassing a number of excellent comments on Grant Morrison's New X-Men since the beginning of the year. Steven, you should definitely think about assembling and refining these into an essay; I know of at least one academic journal that would gladly publish it, if you're into that sort of thing. (And while we're at it, let's get Dave Fiore to commit some of his stuff to print, too.)