February 13, 2004

Liberal No More

Ethan Davis at the Claremont Institute tells of Justice Scalia's recent visit to Amherst College. Once he made his way through the cursing and chanting protestors,

"...Justice Scalia spoke eloquently, lucidly and politely on originalism in constitutional law. Interpreting the Constitution as it was originally written, he argued, is the only way to restrain liberal and conservative judges alike from imposing their personal preferences on the country. Five out of nine unelected lawyers, Scalia said, should not be legislating for the entire nation. If the Supreme Court makes a mistake, the people can only rectify it by constitutional amendment. Directed by their professors to believe that Scalia would engage only in "vitriolic name-calling," the audience was temporarily mollified. There were embarrassed looks as some of the less radical ones quietly removed their black armbands, and Scalia spoke without interruption for close to 45 minutes."

What an outrageous proposition, that judges shouldn't dictate. Heresy!

I'd note that Scalia says he is not a strict constructionist, but a textualist. That is, for example, freedom of the (printing) press can be construed to reportage on the internet...but not a 'right' to smear chocolate on one's nude body with tax-payer funding.

Hilarity ensues, of course, ending with a rare moment of agreement:

"...the professors and students finally said explicitly what campus conservatives have known for a long time. Dissent is legitimate, so long as it comes from the left."

Read it all: "Repressive Tolerance:
Some Questions Are Beyond the Pale For A "Liberal-Arts" College"

Posted by Noel at 08:18 PM | Comments (121)

December 17, 2003

Justice Ginsberg's Global Nation

(This entry was originally posted at Blather Review on Aug 6th, 2003.)

Ginsburg: Int'l Law Shaped Court Rulings
Sat Aug 2, 9:48 PM ET

By GINA HOLLAND, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court is looking beyond America's borders for guidance in handling cases on issues like the death penalty and gay rights, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (news - web sites) said Saturday.

WHAT?!!!! Ex-squeeze me?! I baking powder?!! Look to the U.S. Constitution, Ruthie. You remember that, that thing you took an oath to uphold...?
The justices referred to the findings of foreign courts this summer in their own ruling that states may not punish gay couples for having sex.
And in 2002, the court said that executing mentally retarded people is unconstitutionally cruel. That ruling noted that the practice was opposed internationally.

As for executing the mentally retarded being unconstitution on the grounds of it being "cruel and unusual", that requires no look beyond our shores.

But, the Authority of the Federal government to rule on a State sodomy case requires an examination of our own Constitution -- whatever the verdict -- and not on any non-U.S. law or court decisions.
Most foreign courts have no sworn Duty to observe and protect a Seperation of government Powers, nor to respect the sovereignty of local jurisdiction. Apparantly Justice Ginsberg, and a few others on the SCOTUS, don't believe they do either:

"Our island or lone ranger mentality is beginning to change," Ginsburg said during a speech to the American Constitution Society, a liberal lawyers group holding its first convention.

Am I the only one who sees something bizarre in that sentence? An "American Constitution Society" that seems intent on undermining the purpose of the Constitution. Precious.
And "Our island or lone ranger mentality"?! Er, would that be the Independence from European rule that our forebears fought and died for? Would that be our belief that we govern by a Rule of Law, not of the whim of tyrants? Would that be our belief that governments derive their just powers only by the consent of the Governed, not by the "mentality" of unchecked -- and unbalanced -- Judges?

Justices "are becoming more open to comparative and international law perspectives," said Ginsburg, who has supported a more global view of judicial decision making.

How 'bout being more open to recognizing the limits of your Authority? A "global view of judicial decision making"?!! Who the hell are you to look to anything but the Law and Constitution of the United States -- written by the People whom it governs -- to adjudicate a U.S. case? Huh? Answer me!

Okay, the article then presents some clear-headed rebuttals from Justice Scalia and others, but since reading that calms me down, let's just skip to the final paragraphs:

Ginsburg said Saturday that the Internet is making decisions of courts in other countries more readily available in America, and they should not be ignored.

God, she's dumb. Courts in other countries don't make decisions based on U.S. Constitution law, ours is supposed to.
"While you are the American Constitution Society, your perspective on constitutional law should encompass the world," she told the group of judges, lawyers and students. "We are the losers if we do not both share our experiences with and learn from others."

What have you been smoking, Ruthie? Can you hear yourself talking? In all my years of studying law (as a hobby) I've never seen a more dumbass oxymoron than that sentence in bold.

And "learn from others?" We've learned a lot from other over the centuries. The framers of the Constitution learned that tyrants will tax a people into poverty to fund their glory.
We've seen how they disarm the people to secure their station, ravage village after village to subdue the People into docile servitude.
We've learned that racism can, when authority is centralized, result in genocide.
We've learned that Socialism breeds despair and hopelessness, leading only to economic mediocrity at best.
We've learned that imposing any small restrictions on the speech, assembly, media, privacy, right to due process of law, and Property will only lead to large ones.
Yep, we've learned alot from others.

But, for the sake of the issue directly at hand, just remember that it all comes down to this one: We've learned that a judiciary must be constrained to Law as written by representatives of, and accountable to, the People that it governs.

Oh, and I got a global view for you right here....

Posted by Tuning Spork at 06:39 PM | Comments (4)