Marriage, divorce, Kim Clark and…”Eye of the Tiger”

One of the many reasons I love Kevin Underhill, the maestro of Lowering the Bar, is because he’s willing to ramble esoterically, and his rambles take him–and me–many marvelous places.

In one of his Assorted Stupidities today, he goes from the pop hit “Eye of the Tiger,” to Kim Davis (and her 3 minutes of fame)–a logical connection, as it happens–into why Survivor’s Frankie Sullivan will possibly have to sue Kim Davis (he sued Newt Gingrich, who also comes into this).

And then the marriage/gay civil rights story segues into a heterosexual divorce story, thanks to a potentially certifiable judge, who uses the word “krytocracy,” thence into an essay defining the word, and then onto a small essay defining the word “judi-idiocracy” (which is a close relation, say a cousin, to “krytocracy”) and then onto “idiocracy,” which is a word.

Take a breath, then continue to the National Memo link for a excerpt from a Donald Trump-Ted Cruz rally story, suggesting that another lawsuit over the misuse of a song is in the offing!

From Lowering the Bar:

  • The band Survivor, which had a big hit with “Eye of the Tiger” in 1982, has objected to its use at a rally for Kim Davis. Davis is currently enjoying her final 3 minutes or so of fame, which she obtained by refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. She was released on Tuesday after serving jail time for contempt, and yes, they played “Eye of the Tiger” for some reason at the rally. Variety reports that Survivor’s Frankie Sullivan posted a Facebook message denying any connection. “NO! We did not grant Kim Davis any rights to use … Eye of the Tiger,” he wrote. “I would not grant her the right to use Charmin!” [My favorite line.] Sullivan previously sued Newt Gingrich to stop him from using the song in 2012, Variety says. That case settled.
  • In other marriage-law news, a judge refused to grant a heterosexual couple a divorce last week, saying that if the Supreme Court was going to tell him what marriage is, it also has to tell him what it isn’t, or more to the point, when it’s over. “Although this Court has some vague familiarity with the governmental theories of democracy, republicanism, socialism, communism, fascism, theocracy, and even despotism,” he wrote, not at all sarcastically, “implementation of this apparently new ‘super-federal-judicial’ form of benign and benevolent government, termed ‘krytocracy’ by some and ‘judi-idiocracy’ by others, with its iron fist and limp wrist [see what he did there?], represents quite a challenge for a state level trial court.” Okay. The couple that just endured a four-day divorce trial probably wishes you’d written an op-ed to say that instead, but okay.
  • Googling “krytocracy” (also spelled “kritocracy”) suggests it’s a term used mostly by conservative groups to criticize judicial activism. It means roughly “rule by judges,” translating from the Greek in the same way as with “democracy.” But “krytocracy” isn’t in the OED at all (under either spelling), nor does it show up in a Google ngram search of books since 1800. Both of those use the word “kritarchy” instead (as in “anarchy”), but I guess “kritocracy” is close enough. Interestingly, the only example the OED gives of “kritarchy” is a 19th-century use of that word to refer to the biblical rule of the Judges in ancient Israel. That was probably the good kind of judicial activism, though, I suppose.
  • Judi-idiocracy” isn’t in the OED either, in case you’re wondering. “Idiocracy” actually is in there—but they define it to mean “personal rule or government,” I guess from “id,” rather than “rule by idiots,” which is what it really means. This one I think they need to fix.

From The National Memo:

Despite the hyperbole, [Ted] Cruz’s speech was a dry and wonkish drone-fest compared to that of Donald Trump, whom Cruz introduced as “my friend.”

The tow-headed mogul took the stage to the soaring chorus of R.E.M’s eschatological Reagan-era ballad “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine).” (The notoriously liberal alt-rock act, which disbanded in 2011, has had to deal with conservatives using their music before.)

UPDATE 9/12/2015. Yup, it had to happen:

R.E.M. to politicians using their music—”go fuck yourselves!”

Source: R.E.M has a NSFW message to Donald Trump after he uses their song at a Tea Party rally

This almost makes me feel bad for conservatives. What majestic, rally-quality pop songs would they have legitimate, unchallenged access to? Isn’t Ted Nugent one of them? Indeed he is, so why aren’t they all using one of his songs? Which are…What are Ted Nugent’s songs?

UPDATE 9/11/2015. Re that judge who wouldn’t issue a heterosexual divorce decision because of, well, here’s the Brennan Center’s crisp, rational diagnosis:


TN Judge Holds Obergefell v. Hodges Also Strips State’s Power Over Divorce

In Tennessee, Chancellor Court Judge Jeffrey Atherton recently denied Thomas and Pamela Bumgardner’s request for a divorce based on his conclusion that the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges took away the state’s power to regulate marriage and thus divorce, writes Lyle Denniston for the Constitution Daily. In his decision, Judge Atherton wrote, “since only our federal courts are wise enough to address the issues of marriage – and therefore contested divorces – it only follows that this court’s jurisdiction has been preempted.” Denniston writes that he believes Judge Atherton “simply got that decision wrong.” He explains that “[s]ince the Supreme Court’s 1803 decision in Marbury v. Madison, the Supreme Court has claimed the final word on what the Constitution means, so state provisions that conflict must yield to those interpretations.” State governments, Denniston continues, remain “the primary authority to define marriage and its benefits” as the Supreme Court ruled two years ago United States v. Windsor.  Denniston concludes that Judge Atherton’s remarks about the impact of Obergefell were political, not judicial. 

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