Tag Archives: 2012 elections

South Korea Decides Today

19 Dec

South Korean Election Day

Today South Koreans vote for a president. If not for the historic contest between a woman and a man (perhaps a stirring example of generational change), there’s not much compelling about this poll. In fact, if Japanese voters just punted on an election that might decide Japan’s economic health for at least a year, South Koreans don’t even need to have an election.

South Korea’s presidential campaign reaches its climax on December 19 when voters choose between conservative ruling Saenuri party candidate Park Geun-hye and progressive opposition Democratic Unity Party (DUP) candidate Moon Jae-in. Both campaigns have focused on domestic economic issues and they have obscured their foreign policy differences as they converge to the center.

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Don’t Let Marijuana Ruin Your Buzz

11 Dec

America Politics and PotLegal marijuana proponents in the two U.S. states that legalized the sale, distribution, and general use of marijuana – as well as the other 16 who already had some form of pro-marijuana law – probably didn’t realize, that the fight for a cheap high is not over.

Even as marijuana legalization supporters are celebrating their victories in the two states, the Obama administration has been holding high-level meetings since the election to debate the response of federal law enforcement agencies to the decriminalization efforts.


One option is for federal prosecutors to bring some cases against low-level marijuana users of the sort they until now have rarely bothered with, waiting for a defendant to make a motion to dismiss the case because the drug is now legal in that state. The department could then obtain a court ruling that federal law trumps the state one.

A more aggressive option is for the Justice Department to file lawsuits against the states to prevent them from setting up systems to regulate and tax marijuana, as the initiatives contemplated. If a court agrees that such regulations are pre-empted by federal ones, it will open the door to a broader ruling about whether the regulatory provisions can be “severed” from those eliminating state prohibitions — or whether the entire initiatives must be struck down.

Another potential avenue would be to cut off federal grants to the states unless their legislatures restored antimarijuana laws, said Gregory Katsas, who led the civil division of the Justice Department during the George W. Bush administration.

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Infidel Links, 12-5-12

5 Dec

Don't Mind the Construction!

Typhoon Bopha: Philippines death toll worsens (The Guardian)

Lee Raises Hackles with Debate Act (DailyNK)

Lee Jung Hee, the left wing presidential candidate for the United Progressive Party, has incited controversy in conservative quarters by referring to the South Korean government as “the government of the south side” during last night’s televised presidential debate, which she appeared on as third candidate alongside Moon Jae In and Park Geun Hye.

Ordinarily, the only place where South Korea is referred to in such terms is in the North Korean state media, causing some conservative commentators to brand her a ‘spokeswoman’ for the North. This characterization was lent further weight when she referred to North Korea’s upcoming long-range rocket launch as that of a ‘working satellite’ and called the Cheonan sinking an “incident” rather than an “attack” or a “sinking.”

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