I don't want to be writing repeated about the Terri Schiavo case, but it touches on so many philosophical points that I just feel the need to comment. (Even after Blogspot decided to shut down and drop the first draft into oblivion.)
I thought that abortion would be the issue that would sound the death knell for the alliance between social conservatives and libertarians. Chalk me up about being wrong there. The Terri Schiavo case, and the Congress's and President Bush's responses to it, should be deeply troubling to anyone who truly wants to maintain some semblence of state's rights.
Prof. Rick Hill, quoted in whole by Prof. Volokh, has a very good analysis on the ways that the actions taken by Republicans are contrary to both the Constitution and conservative principles. I am not going to presume to speak on the issues of law, I'll let the article speak for itself. I would just like to point out another area where yesterday's legislation makes the words of Republicans ring hollow.
In my mind, the definition of marriage is a couple granting and receiving the rights to act for one another when the other is unable to do so, among other things. While Michael Schiavo is far from the poster child for good husbanding, he is still Terri's husband, and therefore has the right to speak for her. That can suck, and especially in this case, but if anyone can attempt to overrule a spouse merely when the spouse is making an unpopular decision, then any decision made by a spouse can be questioned. In what way is this defending marriage? It would seem to me that this is further weakening the institution, and doing so far more than allowing same sex couples to grant those rights to one another.