Texas governor Rick Perry has decided not to run for another term as governor, and that has many on the right excited about a possible 2016 presidential campaign. Perry is thought to be a good primary candidate due to his social conservatism (he has recently called a special session of the Texas legislature in an attempt to once again pass the anti-abortion legislation filibustered so recently by Wendy Davis). He is still thought to make a good general election candidate due to his state’s comparative economic performance. Texas has posted unusually low unemployment numbers relative to the rest of the country during his stint as governor. So today I’d like to consider the question of whether or not Rick Perry makes a suitable republican candidate for US president.
I ran across an interesting piece today, in which the author, Joshua Spivak, notes that by declaring that the supporters of Prop 8 (the proposition in California which forbid same-sex marriage) did not have legal standing to sue in its defense, the Supreme Court has made direct democracy through propositions and referendums much more difficult to defend. Implicitly assumed in the piece is that direct democracy is an ideal worth defending, and that the Prop 8 decisions amounts to a dangerous precedent. Today I intend to dispute that assumption.
An interesting new report is out from the US state department about the Keystone XL pipeline, a proposed oil pipeline running from Canada’s tar sands to the United States. Key to the report is this line in particular:
Project is unlikely to have a substantial impact on the rate of development of the tar sands, or on the amount of heavy crude oil refined in the Gulf Coast area.
This may have some interesting implications for the question of whether or not the pipeline ought to be built. Let’s discuss them.