Does Rove’s Executive Privilege Persist Under Obama?

Karl Rove

“After Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) re-subpoenaed Karl Rove, former aide and adviser to President George W. Bush’s, to testify before Congress on his role in the Bush administration’s politicization of the Justice Department and prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman (D), Rove’s lawyer Tuesday asked the Obama White House for guidance, The Huffington Post reports.

Does Rove’s past claim of executive privilege, which Bush backed, still exist under the new administration?” via The Washington Independent.


Supreme Court Steps Closer to Repeal of Evidence Ruling

President George W. Bush announces from the Ov...
“In 1983, a young lawyer in the Reagan White House was hard at work on what he called in a memorandum “the campaign to amend or abolish the exclusionary rule” — the principle that evidence obtained by police misconduct cannot be used against a defendant.

The Reagan administration’s attacks on the exclusionary rule — a barrage of speeches, opinion articles, litigation and proposed legislation — never gained much traction. But now that young lawyer, John G. Roberts Jr., is chief justice of the United States.

This month, Chief Justice Roberts, writing for the majority in Herring v. United States, a 5-to-4 decision, took a big step toward the goal he had discussed a quarter-century before. Taking aim at one of the towering legacies of the Warren Court, its landmark 1961 decision applying the exclusionary rule to the states, the chief justice’s majority opinion established for the first time that unlawful police conduct should not require the suppression of evidence if all that was involved was isolated carelessness. That was a significant step in itself. More important yet, it suggested that the exclusionary rule itself might be at risk.

The Herring decision “jumped a firewall,” said Kent Scheidegger, the general counsel of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, a victims’ rights group. “I think Herring may be setting the stage for the Holy Grail,” he wrote on the group’s blog, referring to the overruling of Mapp v. Ohio, the 1961 Warren Court decision.

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. joined the Herring decision and has been a reliable vote for narrowing the protections afforded criminal defendants since he joined the court in 2006. In applying for a job in the Reagan Justice Department in 1985, he wrote that his interest in the law had been “motivated in large part by disagreement with Warren Court decisions, particularly in the areas of criminal procedure,” religious freedom and voting rights.” via NY Times


R.I.P. John Martyn

“John Martyn, a Scottish singer and guitarist whose gentle mix of folk and jazz and innovative use of electronic effects have influenced a broad range of musicians since the 1970s, died on Thursday in Kilkenny, Ireland. He was 60.

The cause was complications of pneumonia, said Jim Tullio, his longtime record producer.

Mr. Martyn emerged from the London folk scene of the mid-1960s with a crisp and distinctive guitar style, but he had his greatest impact in the ’70s with albums that took that sound in new directions. Inspired in part by the slow-burning, mystical jazz of the American saxophonist Pharoah Sanders, he devolved a keen sense of texture and atmospherics, transforming ballads into sensuous rhapsodies.

Making novel use of the Echoplex and other devices in songs like “Glistening Glyndebourne” (1971), he manipulated the sound of his acoustic guitar, making it pulse and throb hypnotically, an effect widely imitated throughout the ’70s and ’80s.

Although his music never had a wide appeal, Mr. Martyn released more than 20 albums and has been emulated by generations of musicians.” via NYTimes Obituary.

Solid Air and Grace and Danger have always been in heavy rotation in my listening. Today, they will be on continuous shuffle…

The Making of The Shining

Jack Nicholson in The Shining

Stanley Kubrick allowed his then-17-year-old daughter, Vivian, to make a documentary about the production of The Shining. Created originally for the British television show BBC Arena, the documentary offers rare insight into the shooting process of a Kubrick film. A version of this film with Vivian Kubrick’s commentary can be viewed here: The Making of The Shining (by Vivian Kubrick) [via wood s lot].

Let’s Get Animal

One-legged duck on a stone - Ouchy - Switzerland

‘ “Souvenir de Chine,” a video by the Swiss electronic duo Larytta, features mice, ducks, chickens, and parakeets: We assume that none of them were injured along the way. But, like us, they must have been mighty confused.’ via Very Short List.

Street with a View

“On May 3rd 2008, artists Robin Hewlett and Ben Kinsley invited the Google Inc. Street View team and residents of Pittsburgh’s Northside to collaborate on a series of tableaux along Sampsonia Way. Neighbors, and other participants from around the city, staged scenes ranging from a parade and a marathon, to a garage band practice, a seventeenth century sword fight, a heroic rescue and much more…

Street View technicians captured 360-degree photographs of the street with the scenes in action and integrated the images into the Street View mapping platform. This first-ever artistic intervention in Google Street View made its debut on the web in November of 2008.” via STREET WITH A VIEW: a project by Robin Hewlett & Ben Kinsley.

The Pedestrian Project

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Eerily familiar...

“The Pedestrian Project consists of several performers wearing entirely black custom-made costumes modeled after the generic images of men, women, and children seen on public signs. Mimicking the lives of everyday people, the roaming sculptural forms inspire the imaginations of onlookers, who often find themselves mesmerized as these familiar icons assume busy lives of their own.” via The Pedestrian Project | Trend.Land.