Good News From California

Reading all the accounts of the oral arguments on Prop 8 yesterday (for a diverse round-up, see here), I have to say there’s a chance of what, to my mind, is the optimal decision. The Justices seemed highly skeptical – and rightly so – that a voters’ initiative could not change the results of a controversial court decision. Since the No On 8 forces campaigned last year under the same assumption, it’s a little rich to see them now protest that the vote was not a real one anyway and they engaged in it only on the assurance that they would win. Moreover, if the court upholds Prop 8, we avoid giving the Hewitts and Romneys and Santora their "black robes" moment, an endless harangue about evil judges despotically dictating to God-fearing Americans. I’ve been in enough of those arguments to want to avoid them in future. They deflect debate from the real issue: that gay marriage is good for gays, straights and society as a whole. They give bigots a legitimate reason to oppose our equality, while allowing them to avoid the real arguments for it.

Methanol?

A reader writes:

What needs to be added to this debate is Methanol (Methyl Alcohol). Also known as Wood Alcohol, Methanol has a simpler chemical structure than Ethanol and can be produced from a far wider range of feedstock materials. As the name Wood Alcohol implies, Methanol is easier to make from cellulose than is so called Cellulose Ethanol. Methanol can be easily generated from virtually any available carbon-based material: corn stalks, wood chips, grasses, human and animal wastes, coal, natural gas, etc. The resources available for creating Methane are vastly greater than all the oil reserves worldwide.

NeoGoodbye

by Reihan I’ve been meaning to write a kind of lengthy meditation on the future of neoconservatism, taking off from Mark Lilla’s entertaining and mostly unfavorable review of Jacob Heilbrunn’s They Knew They Were Right. But to do that I first need to go through some of Lilla’s earlier writing on the reactionary mode and … Continue reading NeoGoodbye

CONSERVATISM IS DEEPLY UNPOPULAR

In mulling over the Social Security crisis-unlike a few folks I admire, I’m convinced that there is one-it occurred to me that conservatism is deeply unpopular. This might sound odd in light of President Bush’s reelection, the endless hand wringing among liberals, and the obliteration of the Democratic Party in the white South. I can … Continue reading CONSERVATISM IS DEEPLY UNPOPULAR