Tag Archives: Supreme Court

Thomas dissent rips into Kavanaugh SCOTUS opinion – over racial politics, by Daniel Horowitz

Are Supreme Court opinions now merely reflections of political correctness. From Daniel Horowitz at conservative review.com:

Clarence Thomas

James Leynse/Corbis | Getty Images

There have been 783,453 homicides in this country since the black-robed masters “allowed” us to continue our constitutional heritage of meting out capital punishment for murderers. Yet despite the raucous debate surrounding its use, just 1,500 individuals have been executed in 43 years. That is because the worst, most cold-blooded murderers have many ways to overturn capital convictions even when the evidence is beyond a shadow of a doubt. In recent years, Chief Justice John Roberts has been joining the Left in opening up a new avenue to disqualify such convictions: namely, tainting the jury pools as racist. With today’s opinion, it’s clear he now has a companion in Justice Kavanaugh.

In Flowers v. Mississippi, Kavanaugh wrote a 7-2 majority opinion overturning a sixth conviction of a cold-blooded murderer who was convicted of killing four people 23 years ago. Although he was convicted with evidence beyond a shadow of a doubt, in Kavanagh’s view the jury pool was racist. Overturning state due process: This is yet another example of the growing trend of the federal courts taking over state criminal law procedures and according the worst criminals a degree of process that would confound our Founders. And it’s most often because of racial politics.

Nobody disputes the fact that the Mississippi courts convicted Curtis Flowers for the murders based on solid eyewitness and physical evidence and that the jury’s verdict itself was impartial. However, Kavanaugh and the other six justices believes that the Mississippi Supreme Court erred in ruling that one particular peremptory (discretionary) strike conducted by the prosecutor against someone in the jury pool at jury selection for the original trial was animated by “discriminatory intent” and therefore entitles Flowers to a seventh trial!

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Government now wants to seize your car for going 5 MPH over the limit, by Simon Black

Civil asset forfeiture easily ranks in the top 10 list of government scams, although there’s plenty of competition. From sovereignman.com:

We’ve discussed this on and off for several years now. Civil asset forfeiture is a legal process that allows the government to seize assets and cash from citizens without any due process or judicial oversight.

You don’t even have to be charged with a crime. You are assumed guilty unless you can somehow prove your innocence.

Of course, not everyone has this ability… if you aren’t local, state, or federal law enforcement, this is called stealing, and you go to prison.

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But the government is actually a bigger problem than common thieves.

A 2015 report showed that law enforcement used civil asset forfeiture to steal more from US residents than every thief, robber, and burglar in America combined.

About $4.5 BILLION worth of cash, cars, homes, and other property is taken by civil asset forfeiture each year — hundreds of millions more than common criminals steal.

And it happens at every level. Your local cop can use civil asset forfeiture just like your state trooper. And then any one of the armed agents of the US government—from the FBI to the Fish and Wildlife Service—can rob you for whatever reason they want.

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American’t: From Midterms to End Times, by Selwyn Duke

To MAGA, we must first MAMA. From Selwyn Duke at selwynduke.com:

WWII? As for today, how many see that the United States is at what some call a tipping point, what others may call a Fourth Turning? Whatever you call it, the American republic is in its last days. This is too scary for many to contemplate, but there’s something far scarier: playing ostrich and not being prepared for things to come.

The so-called Left, ever violent since its French Revolution birth and as power hungry as ever, wholly controls the culture: the media, mainstream and social; academia; and entertainment. This means it controls long-term politics, since the latter is downstream of culture. So is big business, mind you, which is why the Left controls most of it as well; this, of course, translates into funding.Trump’s 2016 victory will not MAGA; it was merely a stay of execution, a prolonging of the inevitable. This should have been obvious in a country that could elect Barack Obama and then, like the Titanic having backed up to hit the iceberg again, re-elect him. If it wasn’t, it should be obvious now that the Democrats have seized the House in a Watergate-level rout.

The notion that this was a standard result for a president’s first midterm is only comforting when viewing matters in relative terms; that is, the “‘political spectrum’ always has a right and left side no matter how far ‘left’ that spectrum moves.”

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What if the President and the Senate Just Pulled a Fast One? by Andrew P. Napolitano

The repetitive questions style is annoying, but Andrew P. Napolitano makes some salient points about Kavanaugh’s confirmation. From Napolitano at lewrockwell.com:

What if the whole purpose of an independent judiciary is to be anti-democratic? What if its job is to disregard politics? What if its duty is to preserve the liberties of the minority — even a minority of one — from the tyranny of the majority? What if that tyranny can come from unjust laws or a just law’s unjust enforcement?

What if we have a right to insist that judges be neutral and open-minded rather than partisan and predisposed to a particular ideology? What if presidential candidates promise to nominate judges and justices who they believe will embrace certain ideologies?

What if history shows that Supreme Court justices appointed by Democratic presidents typically stay faithful to their pre-judicial ideologies? What if history shows that justices appointed by Republican presidents tend to migrate leftward, toward the middle of the ideological spectrum? What if some Republican-appointed justices — such as Sandra Day O’Connor, Anthony M. Kennedy and David Souter — migrated across the ideological spectrum so far that they became pillars of the high court’s abortion jurisprudence even though the presidents who appointed them publicly expected the opposite?

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What Could Be More Important Than A Seat On The Supreme Court? by Christopher Manion

The story of a man who put principle over political power, told by his son. From Christopher Manion at lewrockwell.com:

The noise of the universe surrounding the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to take the seat of retired Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy calls to mind an earlier nomination – less contentious, but profoundly consequential.

It all began on April 6, 1953, my father, Clarence Manion, confronted Eisenhower’s Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, in testimony given before the Senate Judiciary Committee. The issue was the Bricker Amendment, designed by Ohio Senator John Bricker to forbid the president from making secret deals like those that Roosevelt and Truman had made with Stalin during World War II.

Thirty years later, Dulles’ son Avery – by then a Cardinal in the Catholic Church –told me had attended that hearing. His dad was mad.

What galled Secretary Dulles most that day was how Dad buttressed his testimony by quoting Dulles himself, from a speech he had given a year before, when Ike was still running hard to defeat Senator Robert Taft, an avid supporter of Bricker. “The treaty-making power is an extraordinary power, liable to abuse,” Dulles had railed then. Treaties “can cut across the rights given to the people by their Constitutional Bill of Rights.”

The Bricker Amendment was designed to restore the Constitutional requirement that such agreements among nations be publicly disclosed as treaties, debated, and valid only after they had received a 2/3 vote of the Senate. Without the amendment, Bricker warned, any president could run rampant over the Constitution simply by making secret “executive compacts” that changed the Constitution. All he needed was a foreign leader who would go along.

After all, Article VI of the Constitution states that treaties shall become part of the “supreme law of the land.”

Although the platform of the 1952 Republican Convention that nominated Eisenhower strongly endorsed the Bricker Amendment, Ike began backing away from it as soon as he took office in 1953. During that year, the American Legion strongly backed Bricker, and my father sang its praises to packed Legion audiences in every state in the union.

To continue reading: What Could Be More Important Than A Seat On The Supreme Court?

The Supreme Court Is Much Too Powerful, by Ryan McMaken

That the confirmation of the next justice of the Supreme Court becomes such an intense and divisive issue shows that the court has too much power. From Ryan McMaken at mises.org:

The current frenzy over the vacancy on the Supreme Court in the wake of Justice Kennedy’s retirement highlights just how much power has been centralized in the hands of a small number of people in Washington, DC.

The left has grown positively hysterical over the thought of yet another Trump-appointed judge being installed, who could potentially serve on the court for decades. Right-wingers who claim the left is overreacting, however, are unconvincing. One can only imagine the right’s reaction were Hillary Clinton president. She would have already had the opportunity to appoint Scalia’s replacement, and we might now be talking about her nominee to replace Justice Ginsberg.

The right-wing media would be filled with article after article about how the new court would be a disaster for health-care freedom, private gun ownership, and, of course, the unborn.

But, as it is, we live in a country where five people on a court decide what the law is for 320 million people. And for some reason, many people think this is entirely normal. It’s our own American version of the Soviet politburo, but few are even bothering to ask whether it’s a good idea.

After all, if it makes sense for a small handful of people to decide law for the entire country, why even bother with a House of Representatives? Even the Senate — composed primarily of multimillionaires living full-time in Washington, DC, is is extravagantly “democratic.”

The Myths Behind the Court

To combat the obvious absurdity of the Supreme Court’s vast lawmaking powers, however, we have invented a number of myths designed to convince ourselves that the Court is not, in fact just another political institution. It is — we tell ourselves — something special. Something non-political.

To continue reading: The Supreme Court Is Much Too Powerful

Filling the Swamp, by Andrew P. Napolitano

Andrew P. Napolitano doesn’t like President Trump’s Supreme Court pick. From Napolitano at lewrockwell.com:

When Donald Trump started running for the Republican nomination for president in June 2015, he began by attacking the Republican establishment in Washington, and he began his attack by calling the establishment “the swamp.”

His real target was the permanent government and its enablers in the legal, financial, diplomatic and intelligence communities in Washington. These entities hover around power centers no matter which party is in power.

Beneath the swamp, Trump argued, lies the deep state. This is a loose collection of career government officials who operate outside ordinary legal and constitutional frameworks and use the levers of government power to favor their own, affect public policy and stay in power. Though I did not vote for Trump — I voted for the Libertarian candidate — a part of me rejoiced at his election because I accepted his often repeated words that he would be a stumbling block to the deep state and he’d drain the swamp.

On Monday night, he rewarded the swamp denizens and deep state outliers by nominating one of their own to the Supreme Court.

Here is the back story.

The late Justice Antonin Scalia — my friend during the final 10 years of his life — and his neighbor and colleague Justice Anthony Kennedy often remarked to each other during the Obama years that each would like to leave the Supreme Court upon the election of a Republican president. Scalia’s untimely death in February 2016 denied him that choice, but Kennedy bided his time.

When Trump was elected president, Kennedy told friends that he needed to await Trump’s nominee to replace Scalia to gauge whether the judicially untested Trump could be counted upon to choose a nominee of Kennedy’s liking and Scalia’s standing.

Trump knew Kennedy’s thinking, and that guided him in choosing Neil Gorsuch for Scalia’s seat. Gorsuch believes in the primacy of the individual and natural rights and is generally skeptical of government regulators. He is also a former Kennedy clerk.

To continue reading: Filling the Swamp