Category Archives: History

“Preventing a Disrupted Presidential Election and Transition”

Radiolab: What if? (Podcast, 41 minutes)

“There’s plenty of speculation about what Donald Trump might do in the wake of the election. Would he dispute the results if he loses? Would he simply refuse to leave office, or even try to use the military to maintain control? Last summer, Rosa Brooks got together a team of experts and political operatives from both sides of the aisle to ask a slightly different question. Rather than arguing about whether he’d do those things, they dug into what exactly would happen if he did. Part war game part choose your own adventure, Rosa’s Transition Integrity Project doesn’t give us any predictions, and it isn’t a referendum on Trump. Instead, it’s a deeply illuminating stress test on our laws, our institutions, and on the commitment to democracy written into the constitution.
You can read The Transition Integrity Project’s report here.

“Marzine has gone to the Moon, Travel sickness hasn’t”

Pharmama: Pharmazie auf dem Mond. “Gelegentlich findet man in Kundenretouren von Alt-Medikamenten wirkliche Schätze. Dieses hier zum Beispiel: Marzine war ein Mittel gegen Übelkeit, das ich auch noch kannte. Es ging 2008 – damals habe ich angefangen zu bloggen – in der Schweiz ausser Handel. Es enthält Cyclizin, ist ein altes Antihistaminikum (erste Klasse) und wirkt antiallergisch, antiemetisch (gegen Übelkeit) und beruhigend. Cyclicin gehörte zu den ersten Antihistaminika und wurde von der NASA beim Mondflug als Mittel gegen Übelkeit verwendet. Dabei macht es anscheinend weniger müde als andere Antihistaminika, weshalb es von der WHO 2011 auf die Liste der unentbehrlichen Medikamente für Kinder aufgenommen wurde.”

“Akademische Kompetenz gegen dumme Aussage”

Deutsche Welle Meinung: Trump, Johnson und das Gift des Populismus. “Lügen und Rechtsbrüche der Regierung sind der Stoff, der Demokratien schleichend zerstören können. Sie wirken nicht anders auf Gesellschaften, als Gift auf Oppositionelle, meint Martin Muno.”

“Wie toxisch jahrelange populistische Herrschaft wirkt, sieht man derzeit in den USA. Wenn eine sachliche Auseinandersetzung zwischen Demokraten und Republikanern immer weniger möglich wird, wenn es ernsthafte Gedankenspiele gibt, dass das Ergebnis der Präsidentenwahl im November nicht anerkannt werden könnte, wenn bewaffnete Milizen in den Straßen patrouillieren, dann ist es bis zum geistigen Bürgerkrieg nicht mehr weit.

Populismus vergiftet also ganze Gesellschaften – sei es in den USA, Großbritannien, Polen oder Ungarn. Und führt die jeweiligen Staaten näher an diejenigen, in denen Oppositionelle ganz buchstäblich vergiftet werden.”

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” RBG

The New York Times: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court’s Feminist Icon, Is Dead at 87. “The second woman appointed to the Supreme Court, Justice Ginsburg’s pointed and powerful dissenting opinions earned her late-life rock stardom.”

“Wendy W. Williams, an emeritus professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center and Justice Ginsburg’s authorized biographer, wrote in a 2013 article that Ms. Ginsburg’s litigation campaign succeeded in “targeting, laser-like, the complex and pervasive legal framework that treated women as yin and men as yang, and either rewarded them for their compliance with sex-appropriate role behavior or penalized them for deviation from it.”

Professor Williams continued: “She saw that male and female were viewed in law and beyond as a natural duality — polar opposites interconnected and interdependent by nature or divine design — and she understood that you couldn’t untie one half of that knot.” Male plaintiffs were thus essential to the project of dismantling what Justice Ginsburg referred to as “sex-role pigeonholing.” Sex discrimination hurt both men and women, and both stood to be liberated by Ruth Ginsburg’s vision of sex equality.” What Ruth Bader Ginsburg Would Want America to Do Now
Throughout all of the late-breaking notorious fame, the justice knew that she was just one link in the chain.

“America has lost a warrior and it’s OK to be crushed. I am flattened. And I will mourn, because she deserves to be mourned. But we are also facing an almighty battle that will rage in the coming weeks, with attempts to fill her seat in an unseemly and grotesque manner. It will be hard, and painful, but if you find yourself feeling hopeless and powerless, then you are empathically doing it wrong. Because if anyone had a right to say “nah,” it was the woman who couldn’t get a job or a clerkship after graduating at the top of her class. But she pushed on, and then she pushed forward. She stepped into the fight of the phenomenal women who paved the path before, and now, well, it’s time to step into her fight and get it finished. I think the Notorious RBG would have peered owlishly out at all of us tonight and asked what the heck we are waiting for. And I think we can probably honor her best by getting to it.”

Barack Obama on My Statement on the Passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“Four and a half years ago, when Republicans refused to hold a hearing or an up-or-down vote on Merrick Garland, they invented the principle that the Senate shouldn’t fill an open seat on the Supreme Court before a new president was sworn in.

A basic principle of the law — and of everyday fairness — is that we apply rules with consistency, and not based on what’s convenient or advantageous in the moment. The rule of law, the legitimacy of our courts, the fundamental workings of our democracy all depend on that basic principle. As votes are already being cast in this election, Republican Senators are now called to apply that standard. The questions before the Court now and in the coming years — with decisions that will determine whether or not our economy is fair, our society is just, women are treated equally, our planet survives, and our democracy endures — are too consequential to future generations for courts to be filled through anything less than an unimpeachable process.”

ACLU: In Memory of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933-2020).

“She began Harvard Law School as a young mother and one of only nine women in her class, and became the architect of a legal strategy to eradicate gender discrimination in the United States. She modeled her approach after that of Thurgood Marshall on race discrimination, planning for a series of cases at the Supreme Court, each precedent paving the way for the next that would further expand rights and protections. In 1993, she joined the court as an associate justice, and over the decades became a cultural icon beloved for her vision and passion in defending the rights of women.”

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