Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bad law (and the Culusotti who love it)

I'm sure that the crowd over at Caput Penitus Culus will love this one. Or not.

A Nevada newspaper says it has been served a federal grand jury subpoena seeking information about readers who posted comments on the paper's Web site.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Tuesday that its editor, Thomas Mitchell, plans to fight the request, which the newspaper received after reporting on a federal tax fraud case against business owner Robert Kahre.

The subpoena seeks the identities and personal information about people who posted comments on the story. The newspaper said prosecutors told the judge in the case that some comments hinted at acts of violence and the subpoena was issued out of concern for jurors' safety.

Mitchell said anonymous speech is "a fundamental and historic part of this country." The newspaper would consider cooperating if specific crimes or real threats were presented, he said.
If the Review-Journal is unsuccessful in fighting this unquestionably unconstitutional request, it spells curtains for the entire concept of protected free speech. Because, as you know, Der Staat can find just about ANY reason to justify ANY action once "precedent" (or case law) has been established. Right, Culus?

On the one hand, you would think that the law fetishists at Caput Penitus Culus would be overjoyed at the prospect of law being defined. It's how they get their jollies, apparently. But there's a small problem with this particular issue: everyone, from the Caput a Palo to the n00biest commenter, posts at that site under cloak of anonymity (or at least pseudonymity). The lame-ass excuse offered by the Caput a Palo himself for not associating his real name with his blog was that he was afraid of the FLDS. Seriously? I'm MUCH more afraid of Culus and his proto-authoritarian jack-booted Hitler youth than I would EVER be of the FLDS. What are they going to do? Bore me to death with Book of Mormon readings?

Object lesson, Culusotti! Just because something becomes case law doesn't make it right, just, or constitutionally valid. Perhaps having a legal issue decided in a way that harms your precious anonymity might open your eyes to that fact.

Eh, probably not. They're not terribly bright over there...