D.C.’s Discrimination Escalation
From The Scrapbook
Dec 12, 2011, Vol. 17, No. 13 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
Enter IJ, which sued in federal court, arguing that Louisiana’s restriction served no public purpose (in a state where caskets are not required for burial) but only enriched a government-protected private group and squelched the monks’ right to earn an honest living. In July, a federal judge in New Orleans agreed and struck down the law.
The funeral cartel has appealed to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, perhaps bringing nearer IJ’s strategic goal: a historic Supreme Court ruling that government favoritism toward certain private economic interests is unconstitutional. Already there is disagreement among appeals courts: A unanimous 6th Circuit struck down Tennessee’s nearly identical casket monopoly in 2002, while the 10th Circuit upheld Oklahoma’s law in 2004—both times in cases brought by IJ. The issue is ripening.
And The Scrapbook is looking forward to the day when 20 years’ gallant work pays off and Goliath is buried.
Have Yourself a Merry Little Climate Change
Elsewhere in this issue, you can read Steven F. Hayward’s account of the second batch of emails to be leaked from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, exposing yet more evidence of chicanery among the global warming smart set. What caught the eye of The Scrapbook in the latest cache was an email less substantive than the ones Hayward focuses on, but nonetheless highly revealing of the spirit of the climate change enterprise.
Following the award of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 to Al Gore and the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Kevin Trenberth of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), one of the more egregious brawlers of the climate science community, emailed the following lyrics that the NCAR folks sang at their holiday office party (to the tune of “The First Noël”):
We’re sure you’ll agree with The Scrapbook that it was bad enough when the climate campaigners subverted sound science, marginalized skeptics, and stampeded the world towards a growth-killing agenda of socialist planning and high carbon taxes. But an awkward parody of a lovely Cornish Christmas carol? Now they’ve gone too far.
Hot Gossip, Hot off the Presses
Readers need no introduction to Joseph Epstein, scholar, essayist, iconoclast, and wit—and, of course, a contributing editor to this magazine. Cranking up the cliché machine, we are bold to say that his wry observations and penetrating insights, frequently appearing in these pages, are among the ornaments of language in our age. Which is The Scrapbook’s way of announcing that his latest gem, Gossip: The Untrivial Pursuit (Houghton Mifflin, 256 pp., $25), has just been published.
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