...do we really need a Supreme Court? The UK gets along
quite well without it. Sure, a SC can overturn some bad laws, but they often, to
our detriment, overturn good laws. Without the SC bad laws will be
eventually repealed or overturned by Congress and/or the President
because of actions by strong leaders or grassroots activity--laws such
as, elimination of slavery, voting rights, civil rights, gay rights,
"What the Republicans on the U.S. Supreme Court did in their
United decision was simply to carry this privatization-ideology
more fully into the sphere of U.S. political campaigns. The five fascist
‘Justices’ didn’t refer to Benito Mussolini, but, if they had been
honest, they would have — and they wouldn’t have referred at all to the
U.S. Constitution, which, certainly in its original intent, was
anti-corporate." Eric Zuesse
...the Roberts Court is sending a clear message: that for
those that do not share the values of the rich, powerful, Christian (and probably
white) male, justice in the United States is probably not for you. Crystal
The Supreme Court, by adopting an ahistorical and improperly
narrow view of corruption, has shut down an exploration of the very real
threat that unrestricted campaign spending actually posses to our
democracy....corruption, broadly understood as placing private
interests over the public good in public office, is at the root of what
ails American democracy. (from David Cole's, New York Review of Books
review of, Corruption
in America: From Benjamin Franklin's Snuff Box to Citizens United:
The Supreme Court is paving the way toward an oligarchic
form of society in which a handful of billionaires like the Koch brothers and
Sheldon Adelson will control our political process. Senator
You seem to consider the judges as the ultimate
arbiters of all constitutional questions; a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one
which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy. Our judges
are as honest as other men, and not more so. They have, with others,
the same passions for party, for power, and the privilege of their
corps.... Their power [is] the more dangerous as they are in office for
life, and not responsible, as the other functionaries are, to the
elective control. The Constitution has erected no such single tribunal,
knowing that to whatever hands confided, with the corruptions of time
and party, its members would become despots. It has more wisely made
all the departments co-equal and co-sovereign within themselves. Thomas Jefferson
We had to endure the travesty of Bush versus Gore, one of
the most egregious tramplings of democratic practice imaginable, then
watch the sickening product of that judicial rape: the swaggering
wars based on lies, the torture, the doubling of the national debt,
the environmental depredations, the economic melt-down, and the
raison-d’etre for it all: the radical shifting of wealth from
the 300 million of us to the one-tenth of one percent who own
everything in sight. David Michael
...conservatives -- in the executive branch and on the
courts -- have sought to create unprecedented, unchecked executive power,
including the power to torture and detain individuals indefinitely
without a trial or even due process. They have sought to obliterate
the long standing wall separating church and state, allowing the
government almost unlimited authority to support religion and to
make religion a part of government activities. They have sought to
abolish any constitutional protection for privacy and, most of all
to eliminate constitutional protections for abortions. They have
sought to greatly reduce constitutional protections for criminal
defendants, including their ability to ask a federal court for
protection from unconstitutional state procedures or results. They
have worked to eliminate all affirmative action and to institute a
vision of the Constitution that will perpetuate deep racial
inequalities in American society. More succesfully, they have
closed the courthouse doors, especially to people bringing civil
rights claims. Erwin
Chemerinsky: The Conservative Assault on the Constitution. (p
The Supreme Court has now closed the courthouse doors to
claims of racial bias at every stage of the criminal justice process, from
stops and searches to plea bargaining and sentencing. The system of
mass incarceration is now, for all practical purposes, thoroughly
immunized from claims of racial bias. Staggering racial disparities
in the drug war continue but rarely make the news. The Obama
administration has indicated it supports abolition of the
hundred-to-one disparity in sentencing for crack versus powder
cocaine - the most obvious and embarrassing example of racial bias
in a system that purports to be colorblind....The legal rules
adopted by the Supreme Court guarantee that those who find
themselves locked up and permanently locked out due to the drug war
are overwhelmingly black and brown. Michelle Alexander, The New Jim
"Today, the Court has enthroned corporations, permitting
them not only all kinds of special economic rights but now, amazingly,
moving to grant them the same political rights as the people. This
is a moment of high danger for democracy so we must act quickly to
spell out in the Constitution what the people have always
understood: that corporations do not enjoy the political and free
speech rights that belong to the people of the United States."
Professor Jamie Raskin, constitutional law expert at American
University's Washington College of Law and Maryland state
THE Supreme Court’s momentous decisions... on affirmative
action, voting rights and same-sex marriage overshadowed a
disturbing trend: in the final two weeks of its term, the court
ruled in favor of big business and closed the courthouse doors to
employees, consumers and small businesses seeking remedy for
This sour, scowling, and snarky Supreme Court Justice
dictionary definition of absurd: "Utterly or obviously senseless,
illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably
foolish or false."
A right-wing dogmatist and extreme judicial activist who's full of
himself, Scalia has been the court's chief monkey-wrencher for
corporate interests, constantly messing with the Constitution to
enthrone plutocratic money over our people's democratic politics. By
black-robed fiat, he and his four fellow corporatists on the bench have
managed to twist language and pervert nature itself by declaring that
corporations are "people" and money is "speech." Thus, in their now
infamous Citizens United edict of 2010, the five decreed that these
huge, lifeless, paper constructs--without brains, hearts, souls, or
tongues--must be free to "speak" in our elections by spending unlimited
(and undisclosed) amounts of their shareholders' money to determine who
wins public office. Jim
To most people, the [Hobby Lobby] decision looks stupid
’cause corporations are not persons, all the legal mumbo jumbo
notwithstanding. The decision looks misogynist because the majority
were all men. It looks partisan because all were appointed by a
Republican. The decision looks religiously motivated because each
member of the majority belongs to the Catholic church, and that
religious organization is opposed to contraception. While “looks” don’t
matter to the logic of the law (and I am not saying the Justices are
actually motivated by such things), all of us know from experience that
appearances matter to the public’s acceptance of the law. […] Federal
Judge Richard George Kopf
Supreme Court is partisan and Trump has promised to make it more so.
Here's a sample of what it has done so far:
Made Corporations legal people, super-people in fact, who never die and enjoy rights that real people can only dream of.
Their only legal obligation is to make a profit, which is why they are sociopaths.
Government controlled by corporations is , by definition, Fascist.
Ruled that corporations are people whose only motive is profit for shareholders.
Selected George W. Bush as President in what turned out to be the most disastrous decision ever made.
It resulted in forever wars that continue today and cost trillions of dollars, untolled lives, ratcheted up ‘homeland security’ irreversibly
and at the cost of Americans civil liberties and their well-being.
Rolled back the Voting Rights Act which immediately resulted in Southern States suppressing minority vote.
Voter suppression and other election cons empower a wealthy minority to extract wealth
from the rest of the population.
Loosened laws on corruption to make it virtually non-existent.
Defined gun rights expansively which has resulted in the US becoming number one in mass shootings.
Gave States the option not to participate in the expansion of Medicaid, denying millions healthcare
resulting in thousands of preventable deaths.
Established Secret Courts that make secret law, and allowed universal mass surveillance.
So called ‘originalists’ did away with the Fourth Amendment. Most likely this will make the US a dystopia.
The next partisan fight is about a women's right to choose.
Like each of the above, the Republican Court is profoundly wrong.
Unfortunately, unless the Constitution is amended, a very difficult process, the Court has the last word.
I think we have lost our republic.
Don't ever claim that Republican judges are not activists. They
are partisan hacks and
they have destroyed our
Republic. They have committed a treasonous crime by taking the
US government from the people and giving it to the corporations.
The Court has sided with corporate interests consistently for
a long time: It decided that corporations are people,
some with religious
beliefs, money is speech, and
the only motive for corporations is profit. That is why the U.S. is an oligopoly, no longer a republic.
Republican ideologues on the Supreme Court have committed a
treasonous crime by taking the US
government from one that is accountable to the people to one that is
run by corporations and the wealthy. We
have, as Lawrence Lessig has documented so well, lost our
Government run by corporations is, by definition, fascist.
It was bad enough that the Supreme Court ruled the Corporation is a person with all the rights that implies, it was
worse when it ruled that the only purpose of the Corporation is profit.
Citizens United and
McCutcheon almost certainly will destroy US
governance as we know it to allow
virtually unlimited amounts of money to buy elections.
Lawrence Lessig has made the case in
his book, "Republic,
Lost" that money in politics is corrupting. . . and so it is.
See his video
A corporate person whose only
motive is profit is a sociopath.
doesn't care if the planet is destroyed
by his pollution. He has no
loyalty to community. He is no patriot for he has no binds of
citizenship and will move to the lowest wage, least regulated
avoids all taxes by keeping profits offshore, and will buy
as many politicians as necessary to mold policy in his favor. and so it
is that corporations have set us on a (geologically) fast path to destruction.
Republicans allowed lobbyists to
draft legislation for monopoly
industries and they created ALEC. This policy has led to massive redistribution of income (upward), )
restructuring of the economy, corrupt
politics, extreme income
inequality, and an economy that is
unfair, unjust. unstable, and unsustainable.
The Court substantially increased the influence of money in elections with citizens united,
rights, and removed barriers to Republican voter suppression.
The Citizens United and
McKutcheon rulings will complete our transition
to an oligarchy. Elections clearly are for sale now. There is
no reason to think that the system will self-correct barring structural change.
All of the economic
gains for the last three decades have gone to the very
Recent studies show that Congress
responds to the preferences of the wealthy, not the people. The Federal budget is about
the reverse of what people, when polled, would want. We have reached
new extremes of income
inequality and, according to scholar Thomas
Piketty, it's going to get worse. The U.S. is now an oligopoly, not
Republicans allowed lobbyists to
draft legislation for monopoly industries and they created ALEC.
This policy has led to massive concentration of power in private hands, corrupt media,
redistributed income upward, restructured the economy, corrupted
politics, and led to extreme income inequality. The economy is
unfair, unjust. unstable, and unsustainable.
None of this is accidental, it is the result of policy.
Lawrence Lessig's book, Republic, Lost documents that we have a
government that is responsive to the funders, not the people. The
Supreme Court has been treasonous in facilitating this fascist
Federal Judge Richard George Kopf wrote:
"In the Hobby Lobby cases, five male Justices of the
Supreme Court, who are all members of the Catholic faith and who each
were appointed by a President who hailed from the Republican party,
decided that a huge corporation, with thousands of employees and
gargantuan revenues, was a “person” entitled to assert a religious
objection to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate because
that corporation was “closely held” by family members. To the average
person, the result looks stupid and smells worse. To most people, the
decision looks stupid ’cause corporations are not persons, all the
legal mumbo jumbo notwithstanding. The decision looks misogynist
because the majority were all men. It looks partisan because all were
appointed by a Republican. The decision looks religiously motivated
because each member of the majority belongs to the Catholic church, and
that religious organization is opposed to contraception. While “looks”
don’t matter to the logic of the law (and I am not saying the Justices
are actually motivated by such things), all of us know from experience
that appearances matter to the public’s acceptance of the law."
A National Journal article about the Religious
far-right activist Richard
Land about the Right’s aggressive
decades-long effort to change the makeup of the federal judiciary.
“Alito and Roberts are the gifts that keep on giving, and we would have
gotten neither one of those without our involvement,” Land said,
predicting that Roe v. Wade will soon be “thrown onto the ash heap of
The Court has been oblivious to other threats to civil liberties or rights of privacy that are essential to freedom. In its
2012-2013 term The Court ruled against journalists and other
civil liberties advocates who tried to oppose surveillance.
The all-Republican majority ruled that the plaintiffs have no right to
litigate because they could not prove that the secret techniques harmed
them. Thus they destroyed Americans privacy
surveillance will make Orwell's vision look tame.
Selecting Bush President resulted in
two wars at a cost estimated at $4 trillion
accompanied by tax breaks for the
wealthiest, a full-scale assault on civil
liberties, a an invasive, ineffective 'homeland security'
bureaucracy, criminal acts including torture,
wiretapping, secret government, and an
that will make us a fascist militarized empire. In selecting Bush, the
Court assured the wreck of our republic. Glenn Greenwald writes in his
Liberty and Justice For Some" that the law no
to the elite, but is harsh for everyone else.
We have the world's
largest military policing the empire, the largest prison
population, rotting infrastructure, the
worst income disparity,
weak social programs.
financially devastating education, and
universal surveillance. All of the economic gains for the last three decades have
gone to the very top.
The Republican justices don't believe that international law should have a
bearing on our laws. A world shrunk by
globalization requires the stabilizing efforts of global institutions. Republicans are not prepared to join the
global community of nations. Unlike the EU, we still have the death penalty.
Because a single justice can
be the swing vote for many
decisions, it is important to expand the number of judges.
Corporations are not
Profit is not the
Money is not
See this letter from Ralph Nader:
Pass legislation that the Supreme Court must adhere to the
same ethical standards as the lower Courts.
Amend the Constitution to roll back Corporate personhood, Citizens United,
Increase the number of judges on the Supreme Court because
the Court is divided in such a way that a single individual can make
fundamental decisions. More judges on the Court, as most other countries have,
would make for better decisions. FDR attempted this, and he should have
Nullify the Court's right of review. James McGregor Burns
"John Marshall was wrong: it is
emphatically the province and duty of
the American people, not of the nine justices of the United States
Supreme Court, to say what the Constitution is. A national reappraisal
of the all-powerful court chosen by judicial roulette is crucial if
American democracy is to meet the rising challenges of the twenty-first
century." (From the last page of Burns' Packing
"John Marshall was wrong: it is emphatically the
province and duty of the American people, not of the nine justices
of the United States Supreme Court, to say what the
Constitution is. A national reappraisal of the all-powerful court
by judicial roulette is crucial if American democracy is to meet the
rising challenges of the twenty-first century." (From the last page
of Burns' Packing the Court.)
The Constitutional "originalists" will not find the judicial
review anywhere in the Constitution.
Sundays I wait patiently for the start of the "60 minutes"
program which is one of the last vestiges of television journalism.
It is almost invariably delayed by a sports
program, which undoubtedly confuses TIVO
and keeps viewership down. "60 minutes" like other corporate
conglomerate broadcasts, is increasingly
undisguised right-wing propaganda.
One of the direct results of corporate rule is rendering media dysfunctional.
For example, when Supreme Court Justice Scalia was profiled on
60 minutes, he spoke on varied subjects, but on Bush v Gore,
which selected Bush as President in 2000, he said simply "Get over
it." Thanks to Greg
Palast, writing for the British press, we now know that there
was wholesale election rigging in
Florida that year. An honest recount of the votes would likely have
made Gore President. Scalia is unrepentant. Seven years later the
whole world can see that the Court's decision was likely the worst one ever made. Bush
proved it. It does not take a
Supreme Court Judge to know we shouldn't get over the idea
that elections no longer
Scalia claims to be an 'originalist', which he explained
is the idea that the Constitution
should be interpreted as the framers intended. However, when V.P.
Cheney met with people to decide energy policy and kept it secret, Scalia, Cheney's good friend,
that Congress could not know details of
those meetings. The Constitution
clearly intended that Congress should have oversight powers
because, without that, there can be no 'checks and balances'.
Given two new Bush additions to the Court, it is unlikely that the Bush administration's concept of the
imperial Presidency will be
overturned. This Scalia decision wiped out Congressional oversight,
checks and balances, and certainly crippled the Constitution. In the interview Scalia,
many Republicans, just couldn't seem
to figure out what torture is either. We
are clearly on a path to fascism.
Scalia strongly defends executive
power, opposes the Freedom of Information Act, and weakens the
checks and balances that the Constitution incorporated. Without
good information there can be no democracy.
He is an enemy of good
After Scalia's profile, there followed exciting pictures of
the Israeli air force preparing for action
against Iran. Such pictures are reminiscent
of propaganda leading to the War with Iraq:
If the President wants to go to war with Iran,
is anyone in position to stop him ?
The Constitution gives the power to
make war to the Congress because the
framers knew the danger. Does it matter what the Constitution says ?
None of the Presidential
rejected Bush's aggressive power grab, nor have they
rejected his secretiveness, his signing statements, or his
refusal to be accountable. It is questionable whether we
can have a meaningful Constitution if Bush
is not held accountable. Scalia's
hypocrisy is evident for anyone that cares to look.
Media had a large role in (s)electing Bush, cheerled his wars,
broadcast his propaganda, and are continuing to
consolidate their oligopoly and are largely responsible for our
path to fascism, but the Supreme Court
sealed the deal with Citizens