Regulatory Czar wants to give Animals the "Rights to sue Hunters" in American Courts.

Discussion in 'Politics Of Hunting And Guns (NOT General Politics' started by cjmousseau, Jul 23, 2009.

  1. cjmousseau

    cjmousseau Well-Known Member

    May 5, 2009
    Obamas new Regulatory Czar wants to give Animals the "Rights to sue Hunters" in American Courts.

    Cass Sunstein's views on litigating on behalf of animals has raised concerns for Sen. John Cornyn, who placed a hold on the nominee until he gets a chance to hear his views one-on-one.

    By Kelley Beaucar Vlahos

    WASHINGTON -- President Obama's nominee for "regulatory czar" has hit a new snag in his Senate confirmation process -- a "hold" by Texas Sen. John Cornyn, who's says he's not convinced that Harvard professor Cass Sunstein won't push a radical animal rights agenda, including new restrictions on agriculture and even hunting.
    Senators are permitted "holds" to prevent a vote on a nominee from coming to the floor. They are often secretive and for very specific reasons.
    "Sen. Cornyn finds numerous aspects of Mr. Sunstein's record troubling, specifically the fact that he wants to establish legal 'rights' for livestock, wildlife and pets, which would enable animals to file lawsuits in American courts," the Republican's spokesman, Kevin McLaughlin, said in a statement to
    Cornyn's hold on Sunstein comes just as Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., last week lifted his own hold on the nominee, whom Obama tapped in April to become the administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Budget and Management.
    Chambliss said he was dropping his hold because Sunstein had convinced him that he "would not take any steps to promote litigation on behalf of animals," and that he believes the "Second Amendment creates an individual right to possess guns for purposes of both hunting and self defense."
    Both statements were included in a letter Sunstein sent to Chambliss on July 14.
    Chambliss added in a Senate floor speech last Wednesday that "Professor Sunstein comes highly recommended by a number of folks from the conservative side of the philosophical divide in this country."
    One of Sunstein's top jobs would be to review and provide guidance for draft federal regulations at different federal agencies. It is a wide-ranging and largely unrestrained position in the executive branch.
    That's a large part of the reason Sunstein's positions on animal rights have become worrisome to his critics. Despite his assurances to the contrary, Sunstein has spoken stridently in favor of allowing people the right to bring suit on behalf of animals in animal cruelty cases and to restrict what he calls the more horrific practices associated with industrial breeding and processing of animals for food.
    Sunstein also advocated restricting animal testing for cosmetics, banning hunting and encouraging the general public to eat less meat.
    The Center for Consumer Freedom's David Martosko, a Sunstein critic, said those positions make the agricultural industry -- major stakeholders in the states represented by both Chambliss and Cornyn -- nervous.
    Martosko said there are plenty of ways to pursue a "stealth campaign" on any one of these fronts -- guns or animal rights -- by putting pressure on the regulatory heads of the different agencies.
    "He is the gatekeeper between the president and the secretaries," he said, noting that "as a regulatory czar, he won't be a judge or a legislator, so he cannot make laws. ... What he can do is nudge the departments in the direction of his philosophy," which is very much in line with "hard core animal rights zealots."
    But Sunstein, who is married to National Security Council Director of Multilateral Affairs Samantha Power, has earned widely varied reviews among the political left and right, and from some of the unlikeliest of quarters.
    "We still don't know much about how Barack Obama plans to overhaul our financial regulatory system, but his reported appointment of Cass Sunstein to an important post is a promising sign," Wall Street Journal editors wrote in January, when Sunstein's possible nomination was being floated.
    The paper's editors said they were cheered by Sunstein's long-held beliefs in using cost-benefit analysis in regulation -- a concept that worries proponents of greater and tighter regulations.
    "We have concerns about some of his academic writings regarding his approach to regulatory policy and regulatory review," Bill Samuel, AFL-CIO legislative director, told The Chicago Tribune. "We want to hear more from him about how he intends to approach regulatory policy."
    Environmentalists also say Sunstein's nomination is a potential blow to their efforts to roll back what they call Bush-era deregulation. Frank O'Donnell, director of Clean Water Watch, wrote that "progressives would've screamed" if President Bush had nominated someone with similar views for the OIRA post." In fact, Bush did, O'Donnell noted, much to the chagrin of progressives.
    Adding to animal rights and cost-benefit analysis is concern over Sunstein's positions on freedom of speech.
    News of Sunstein's latest book, "On Rumors: How Falsehoods Spread, Why We Believe Them, What Can Be Done," lit up the blogosphere last week when The New York Post ran a column by a reviewer who received an advance copy.
    Writer Kyle Smith suggested Sunstein threatens to tweak libel laws for the Internet and make online writers, particularly bloggers, legally responsible for falsehoods and rumors that get generated in cyberspace.
    "Sunstein calls for a 'notice and take down' law that would require bloggers and service providers to 'take down falsehoods upon notice,' even those made by commenters -- but without apparent penalty," Smith wrote. "How long would it take for a court to sort out the truth? (Presidential daughters) Sasha and Malia will be running for president by then. Nobody will care anymore. But it will give politicians the ability to tie up their online critics in court."
    Sunstein, a prolific writer who has penned 35 books since 1990, has plowed the issue of rumors and how they are spread, and leaves much of the policy debate in the air.
    For instance, in a paper titled, "'She Said What?' 'He Did That?' Believing False Rumors," for Harvard Law School in November 2008, Sunstein wrote: "In discussions of possible restrictions on free speech, it is standard to speak of, and to deplore, the 'chilling effect' that is created by the prospect of civil or criminal sanctions."
    "Libel law, for example, might chill speech about public figures and public issues, in a way that could damage democratic debate. And if there is a 'marketplace of ideas,' we should be especially concerned about the risk of chilling effect because it will undermine processes that will ultimately produce the truth," he wrote.
    Sunstein, who once taught alongside Obama at the University of Chicago Law School, did not return an interview request from
    But being taken for both a liberal activist and a free market cheerleader makes the nominee a true "wild card," observers say.
    John Lott, conservative author of "The Bias Against Guns and Freedomnomics: Why the Free Market Works," called Sunstein "open minded" and a "true academic," but also warned that in its opposition, the left might be looking a gift horse in the mouth.
    "My guess is that these progressives are unlikely to find anyone who could champion many of their views as well as Cass can."
    Tom Firey, managing editor of the Cato Institute's Regulation magazine, said, "Sunstein really doesn't fit readily, politically or ideologically, in any box.
    "I think this is going to be a very interesting nomination to watch on Capitol Hill. He's going to be getting some shots from the right and from the left. You are never going to make anyone who is a stakeholder in these debates happy," he said.
    Cornyn's spokesman said the senator will be happy when he gets direct assurances from Sunstein that he will not pursue an agenda akin to some of his past writings, particularly on the animal rights issue.
    "Sen. Cornyn hasn't had a chance to speak with him yet, that's the reason for the hold," said McLaughlin. "He wants to have a chance to before moving forward."
  2. cjmousseau

    cjmousseau Well-Known Member

    May 5, 2009

  3. cjmousseau

    cjmousseau Well-Known Member

    May 5, 2009
    Re: Regulatory Czar wants to give Animals the "Rights to sue Hunters" in American Cou

    Animal Rights Czar?

    Fans of the Fox News Channel’s “Glenn Beck Program” saw our Director of Research leading off yesterday’s show, discussing what might happen if animal rights activist Cass Sunstein is confirmed as America’s new “regulatory czar.” We’ve been telling reporters for months that Sunstein’s animal-liberation philosophy raises a red flag about his candidacy. Many thanks to Glenn Beck and his staff for bringing this issue to a wider audience.
    Sunstein’s nomination to head the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is back on hold this week, thanks to concerns from Texas Senator John Cornyn (R). Cornyn’s concerns, and ours, go beyond the question of whether governments should be in the business of banning hunting, meat eating, or lab-rat-assisted medical research. Here’s an even greater threat, as we explained it to Beck’s viewers:
    Some animals -- according to [Princeton philosopher Peter] Singer -- are worth more than some humans. A smart border collie, he says, is worth more, inherently, than a retarded child. He doesn't care whether that child is yours or mine or anybody else's.
    So now Cass Sunstein has embraced the whole enchilada. He believes -- and this is straight out of the PETA playbook, this is out of the Humane Society of the United States, some of the real radical animal rights group out there -- he believes that animals should have the same rights as humans. In fact, greater rights than some people, including, as you mentioned, the right to file lawsuits.
    Will the Humane Society of the United States start looking for plaintiffs in the barnyard? Could a farm animal sue you for eating its young?
    Don’t laugh. Gaze into the future, and the mere threat of seeing animals as lawsuit plaintiffs could nudge us all toward veganism as a society-wide default. At least that seems to be Sunstein’s hope. He co-authored a book with that title—“Nudgeabout how an appropriately paternalistic government should help us all be better people by subtly limiting our choices.
    Here’s what we told the Fox audience about that plan:
    It's a way of saying we're not going to completely change your life from the top down, but we're going to “nudge” it around the edges. We are going to assume that you're too stupid to make your own choices. We're going to assume that you don't know -- you're not smart enough to know how to visit a buffet without packing an overnight bag.
    You can't be trusted to eat what you want. You can't be trusted to drink what you want. You certainly can't be trusted to save money the way you want to save it, or buy the car you want. So we have to change the choice parameters to guide you toward the “enlightened” choice.
    What other choices do you make every day that might not be in agreement with today’s new activist-driven “enlightenment”? If they involve food or drink, it might be time to stock the pantry.
  4. buffybr

    buffybr Active Member

    Feb 15, 2009
    Re: Regulatory Czar wants to give Animals the "Rights to sue Hunters" in American Cou

    For the first time in over ten years, I wrote letters to both of my US Senators asking them NOT TO VOTE FOR THE CONFIRMATION of Cass Sunstein as Regulatory Czar, of for any other position in the US Government.

    This guy is a TOTAL NUTCASE! He would be a big part of Obama's "change" that is going to destroy America.
  5. cjmousseau

    cjmousseau Well-Known Member

    May 5, 2009
    Re: Regulatory Czar wants to give Animals the "Rights to sue Hunters" in American Cou

    I shot a cyote in my backyard what is PETA going to sue me over a cyote hunt gun)