When faced with a hard question, we often answer an easier one instead, usually without noticing the substitution.
— Dan Kahneman
(from “Thinking, Fast and Slow”)
It’s hard to predict the future, but 81% of Americans under 30 now back gay marriage.
—Today, the Supreme Court completes its second day of arguments on gay marriage — an issue that has been settled for younger Americans, and for the future…
The White House wanted it both ways – pretend drones are a “secret” to duck court oversight, then tout them as a tough security tactic in the public debate. On Friday, the appeals court basically told Obama’s lawyers to take a hike on that argument. In judicial-speak, that translates to this:
“The CIA [proposed] a fiction of deniability that no reasonable person would regard as plausible.”
Implausible fiction is a very diplomatic smackdown.
From my new Reuters column on the growing alliance against government secrecy — teeing off the unusual rejection of the CIA’s defense of drone secrecy on Friday, from the second highest court in the nation.
It is the ultimate ‘Identity Politics’ if you can *only* see people’s humanity because they’re in your family, or because they’re like you. That is especially risible from a Republican Party that accuses liberals of focusing too much on identity, or constituency-based politics. Yet the GOP’s whole view is that family and marriage is good — but only for certain people, for people like them, people who are heterosexual.
On Sen. Portman changing his gay marriage position, from Ari Melber
via The Last Word
A big and unexpected partial victory for the ACLU’s case against the CIA on drone secrecy. The Court ruled:
In this case, the CIA asked the courts to stretch [a secrecy] doctrine too far — to give their imprimatur to a fiction of deniability that no reasonable person would regard as plausible. “There comes a point where … Court[s] should not be ignorant as judges of what [they] know as men” and women… We are at that point with respect to the question of whether the CIA has any documents regarding the subject of drone strikes.
The case is now headed back to the lower court.
The DC Circuit opinion is here: