Today’s Links: May 21, 2012


GEORGE WILL: “When Government Is the Looter
“Russ Caswell, 68, is bewildered: ‘What country are we in?’ He and his wife, Pat, are ensnared in a Kafkaesque nightmare unfolding in Orwellian language. This town’s police department is conniving with the federal government to circumvent Massachusetts law — which is less permissive than federal law — to seize his livelihood and retirement asset. In the lawsuit titled United States of America v. 434 Main Street, Tewksbury, Massachusetts, the government is suing an inanimate object, the motel Caswell’s father built in 1955.”

SHELDON RICHMAN: “Is There a Libertarian Case for Organized Labor?
“Who do you imagine said this? ‘[Trade-unions] seem natural to the passing phase of social evolution, and may have beneficial functions under existing conditions. . . .’ If you guessed some wily labor leader or social democrat, you are wrong. British laissez-faire advocate Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) wrote those words in his Principles of Sociology (1896).”

JOSH BELL: “Supreme Court Will Hear ACLU Case Challenging Warrantless Wiretapping Law
“The Supreme Court has just agreed to consider whether plaintiffs represented by the ACLU have the right to challenge the constitutionality of a controversial law that authorizes the National Security Agency to conduct dragnet surveillance of Americans’ international emails and phone calls.”


PIRACY – Court Won’t Reduce Student’s Music Download Fine
“The Supreme Court won’t reduce the $675,000 verdict against a Boston University student who illegally downloaded 30 songs and shared them on the Internet.”

WASTE – 9th Circuit Takes Plush Maui Vacation At Taxpayer Expense, As Others Cut Back
“Judges from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, federal district and bankruptcy courts in nine Western states and two Pacific island territories, along with lawyers practicing in those courts, and court staff, will gather at the luxurious Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa from August 13 – 16, 2012 in what looks like a less than valiant attempt to ensure American justice is being served…at a cost to taxpayers of approximately one million dollars.”

CYBERCRIME – Liveblog: Dharun Ravi Sentencing for Bias Intimidation, Invasion of Privacy
“Former Rutgers student Dharun Ravi is being sentenced this morning in Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick. Ravi, 20, faces up to 10 years in prison on bias intimidation and invasion of privacy charges.”