“Originalism”

Supreme Court Most Right Wing Since 1931!

The last time the US Supreme Court was as right wing in its decisions as it has been in 2022 is 1931, 91 years ago!

The nation is in danger from a Court which is promoting anti abortion, pro gun rights, promoting expansion of religion in public places, and making it harder to address climate change!

The conservative majority is advocating “Originalism”, which threatens the entire constitutional decisions from the New Deal onward, and there is concern that the next Supreme Court term will be even more controversial and confrontational than the present one has been!

First Time Ever A Constitutional Right Granted Has Been Taken Away: Abortion Rights!

This has been a very emotional, disturbing 24 hours, causing the rise in blood pressure in millions of Americans!

The Supreme Court has taken away abortion rights after 49 years, as the right wing extremists on the Court, appointed by Presidents George W. Bush and Donald Trump, both of whom lost the popular vote in Presidential elections, have decided women should not control their own bodies.

This has never happened before, to take away a right granted, and to say that abortion is not in the Constitution, is a ridiculous argument! For instance, political parties, Cabinet members, end of African American slavery, rights to vote for women and racial minorities, Social Security, Medicare, and a massive number of other activities and basic functions of government, all came AFTER the writing of the Constitution 235 years ago! Originalism is preposterous in running a goverment centuries later!

The Trump appointed Justices lied in their confirmation hearings when they said Roe V. Wade was established law, as if it was, there is no justification for making women bear children, especially those who have been victims of rape or incest, or where life and well being of the mother is at stake!

The Court Justices lying are grounds for their impeachment and removal, as they tricked Senators who voted for them, including Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Susan Collins of Maine!

The Bush Presidencies Gave Us The Two Worst Supreme Court Justices: Thomas And Alito!

The legacy of George H. W. Bush, and his son George W. Bush, gave us, as all Presidencies do, positives and negatives in the long run of history.

But it is now clear that each of the Bushes gave the nation the two worse Supreme Court Justices in modern American history, both with an extremely narrowminded and vicious streak!

This is referring to the senior Bush appointment of Clarence Thomas in 1991, and to the junior Bush appointment of Samuel Alito in 2006.

Both Justices are so called “originalists’, who believe the Constitution must be understood in 1787 perspective, and do not accept the idea that 235 years have passed, and the situation of many groups, including the issues of gender, race, and sexuality, along with the concept of privacy, needs to be updated.

So we are on the cusp of a likely Supreme Court decision denying every woman the right to control her own body, whether a pregnancy comes about by rape or incest, as well as the danger to the life of the mother!

It also seems an opening not only to outlaw all abortions, but make it a criminal act of the mother and the doctor and hospital staff, and does not consider the effects on all women, whether pregnant or not.

Only a heartless autocrat with hate and vindictiveness in his or her heart would wish to impose tight government regulation on the private lives of women, or really, even men, who are affected by the imposition of a Judicial dictatorship, taking away a right guaranteed for 50 years, an unheard of reversal!

So the Bushes will go down in history in a very negative fashion for, whether realizing it or not, imposing religious views and personal vendettas of Supreme Court Justices they appointed on more than half of the population!

Conservative Counter-Revolution Against 20th-21st Century Constitutional Law!

America is facing a conservative counter-revolution against 20th-21st Century Constitutional law!

We have Supreme Court Justices and their right wing ideologues who wish to bring back the 18th century Constitutional Convention of 1787, a time when women were totally under the control of their fathers, husbands, or other male relatives.

They also want to bring America back to a time when African Americans were slaves, or if that is not tenable, then back to the era of segregation and lynching.

They also want to bring America back to a time when interracial marriage and gay marriage were forbidden.

They also want to bring America back to a time when there was no right of privacy, because such a term was not mentioned in the Constitutional Convention or in the document produced for ratification in 1787.

The concept of originalism is preposterous, that all constitutional law since 1787 is null and void unless it applies to the exact language adopted 235 years ago!

It would put America back to a time when democracy was only for white male Protestants of property!

This battle is one that must be fought all the way to victory, as otherwise, how is America any different than an authoritarian dictatorship, run with the backing of powerful corporations and wealthy people, and based on the concept of theocracy, allowing so called “religious” values to dictate the lives of 330 million Americans?

Tonight’s First Presidential Debate: The Middle Class Guy Vs The Phony Billionaire And Bully

Former Vice President Joe Biden enters tonight’s first Presidential debate in Cleveland against President Donald Trump in a position of strength. He is far ahead in most state polls, including in the Midwest where Hillary Clinton lost the election in 2016.

Biden is the middle class guy who has had struggles and tragedies in his life, much like the vast majority of Americans. He possesses naturally great compassion, empathy, decency, and tons of government experience as US Senator for 36 years and as one of the two best Vice Presidents in American history, alongside Walter Mondale.

Biden comes in with public opinion polls showing great strength for him among college educated voters of both genders; suburban women; African Americans; Latinos except for Cubans; Asian Americans; Jews; Social Justice Catholics; mainline Protestants; moderates; Independents; young voters; and a small sliver of Trump voters in 2016 who realize Donald Trump is a phony billionaire and bully!

Putting Biden in the Oval Office will give us a President with more background knowledge and expertise than any President when he entered the Presidency—more than Lyndon B. Johnson or George H. W. Bush.

Biden knows world leaders and can restore US foreign policy so that foreign allies can against trust our government.

Biden can restore much of the damage done to our domestic infrastructure and our government agencies that are so necessary to continue the advancements of the New Deal, Great Society, and the later accomplishments of Presidents of both parties from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama!

We will have a President who does not lie 20,000 times in three and a half years;

who will not ignore medicine and science;

who will pay his fair share of taxes;

who will not cheat on his wife with other women;

who will pick judges who understand that originalism is the wrong approach to law;

who will work to cross the aisle when possible, instead of constant insults and bullying of opponents and critics;

who will have a Vice President, Kamala Harris, who gives us confidence should there ever be an emergency;

who will restore faith in our basic values of democracy and freedom;

who will bring back honor and decency to the Oval Office;

and who will support total exposure of all crimes committed by the present incumbent of the White House!

Robert Bork, Controversial And Rejected Supreme Court Nominee, Dead: Brings Back Memories And Reflections On Effect On Supreme Court

Twenty five years ago, President Ronald Reagan nominated Robert Bork, former Solicitor General and Acting Attorney General under President Richard Nixon, as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. His death was announced today by his son.

Bork had become controversial for firing Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox during the Watergate Scandal, as ordered by President Nixon. But he also became controversial for the judicial viewpoint known as “originalism”, which contended that judges and Justices should always interpret the Constitution solely on the basis of what the Founding Fathers enunciated in the 18th century, and not consider changing times in their decisions.

This alarmed progressives, liberals, labor supporters, African Americans, women, environmentalists, and others who saw him as a threat to progress on race and gender, and also on privacy rights, including abortion and contraceptives, of which he vehemently was on record as an opponent of such rights not contained in the original Constitution. Ted Kennedy and Joe Biden became major critics, and his nomination became a massive controversy, and made it that future Supreme Court nominees would be examined with a “fine tooth comb”, making them less willing to be as forthcoming as Bork was in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings.

Bork also believed in no limitation on police rights, and thought evolution should not be taught in public schools as fact, therefore promoting fundamentalist religion as part of the curriculum of schools. He was confrontational in his approach, giving as good as he received in the pursuing debate. He displayed no problem with the growth of monopolies, and had no interest in the rights of gay men and women.

After a bitter battle, he was rejected, and this affected the future Court, as Anthony Kennedy became the new appointee the following year, and now after almost 25 years on the Court, has become in recent years the “swing” vote on many cases, therefore having a major impact on constitutional law.

Do not forget that Kennedy’s vote on Gay Privacy rights, in Lawrence V. Texas in 2003, transformed the gay rights movement, and it is thought likely that his vote will call for the allowance of gay marriage when the cases presently before the Court come up for consideration in March, and decision in June!

There is no way that Robert Bork would have been a “swing” vote on the Court, and might very well have been MORE conservative and right wing than either Antonin Scalia or Clarence Thomas have turned out to be, so it was a great moment when Bork, with his radical right agenda, wishing to turn back the decisions of the Earl Warren and Warren Burger Courts that expanded individual rights from the 1950s through the 1980s, was soundly rejected!

Associate Justice Antonin Scalia Compares Gay Marriage To Murder! Totally Reprehensible!

Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia has never hidden his ideological agenda on the Court, any more than Associate Justice Clarence Thomas.

Both men, the most ideologically right wing of the past century, are clear in their prejudices and biases, and desire to bring America back to the 18th century, the time of the Founding Fathers, and the much promoted concept of both Justices known as “originalism”

The fact that the Founding Fathers included slave owners, treated women as second class citizens, and did not trust the masses of citizens so as to give them the vote for President or the US Senate, and limited the right to vote for white males to those who owned property in that time period, does not have any effect on either Scalia or Thomas.

If it was up to them, nothing would have changed, despite the fact that Italian Americans, such as Scalia, and African Americans, such as Thomas, were not considered human beings by most of the WASPS who dominated American government, and mistreated both ethnic groups well into the 20th century! The fact that Scalia is the first ever Italian American Justice, and that Thomas is the second ever African American Justice, seems not to have made them pause and realize the nature of progress and change!

So we know the narrow mindedness of both men, but to have Justice Scalia, who claims to be a great intellectual, and loves himself publicly, to compare gay marriage and gay rights to the horrors of murder, makes one think he is losing it completely, and needs to announce his retirement from the Court this coming June, after being in the hateful minority with Thomas on discrimination against a group, gay Americans, which has suffered more hate and prejudice than any other group in the history of the world, simply because of their sexuality, when that is none of anyone’s business!

If it is alright to have interracial marriage, or marriage between Catholics and Protestants, or Christians and Jews, all groups which have had to fight for their rights to marry, then it is alright to have two men or two women who love each other and wish to commit their lives to each other, to marry and have the benefits and security of marriage, and no prejudice, bias or hate should be allowed to get in the way of their commitment!

Scalia looked like a fool when answering the question of gay Princeton University freshman Duncan Hosie, who demonstrated great courage and dignity in his approach to Scalia, in front of a large audience.

No one is claiming that any person is free of prejudice and personal opinions, but it is totally inappropriate for a member of the Supreme Court to be so openly hostile and antagonistic as Scalia is on gay rights and gay marriage, and his behavior gives license to religious freaks and other hate mongers to continue to encourage actions and violence against gay Americans, and their and his behavior is therefore, morally reprehensible!

Trying To Fathom The Supreme Court On Health Care: The Court Under The Microscope

Yesterday’s oral arguments before the Supreme Court led many observers to think that the Court is about to declare the Obama Health Care law unconstitutional this coming June.

Not so fast, ladies and gentlemen! This is hysteria and panic before the fact, with plenty of opportunity after the Court decision, if it is, indeed, negative!

Emphasis was put on Justice Antonin Scalia’s sarcastic comments about mandating broccoli, a totally ridiculous statement! But one must remember that Scalia is a showboat, a maniacal egotist who loves to hear the sound of his own voice, and get everyone’s attention, and one must remember that the Court was issuing an audio of the oral arguments immediately after the event, a very rare circumstance, and that had to be on Scalia’s mind!

Scalia was thought to be a possible vote, but if it is not, so what, as Scalia is, arguably, a hypocrite who is constantly contradictory, utilizing a broad interpretation of the Constitution, when he wishes to, and other times, pontificating on “originalism”, the idea that we must literally follow the Founding Fathers as they saw things in 1787 at the Constitutional Convention.

More importantly, the view of Justice Anthony Kennedy and Chief Justice John Roberts will be the crucial votes, and although Kennedy and Roberts both expressed some reservations about the Obama Health Care bill and the mandate contained within it, there were also key comments by both that indicated a mind open to consideration of the constitutionality of the law.

Kennedy is usually the swing vote, and seemed conflicted, which can be seen as a good sign, and Roberts seemed very evenhanded, and is known to want to be in the majority, and probably write this most important decision of the past decade, and aware that the Supreme Court does not look very good in the eyes of many people based on recent cases, particularly the Citizens United Case of 2010, on top of the Bush V. Gore case of 2000.

The argument is that if Kennedy goes to the majority, then Roberts will join, and the vote would be 6-3.

And one must point out that the four defenders of the legislation were excellent in their arguments supporting the legislation, with Justice Stephen Breyer, a true intellectual, particularly outstanding in his arguments, but joined by Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan.

So, with one more day of oral arguments, it is not time to give up on support of the legislation, and also realize that one cannot always judge how members of the Court will vote, based on oral argument alone, as often, what is being done is to test both sides in the case, and sometimes, purposely mislead on intentions, in the process of asking the lawyers in the case to defend their side.

This decision is far from certain, but progressives should feel optimistic about it at this point, and simply wait patiently to see the result, knowing that the cause is just and compassionate, and that those of us who support it are on the right side of history with Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal and Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society!

A Generation Of Justice Clarence Thomas: Its Negative Impact!

Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas has now been on the Court for a generation, and his impact is clear.

This is a man who was enmeshed in controversy when he was appointed by President George H. W. Bush to replace Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall as the second African American in the history of the Supreme Court. He was clearly the “anti Marshall”, and has remained in controversy ever since 1991.

Thomas was accused by African American law professor Anita Hill of sexual harassment, and accused liberals of a “lynching”, and only was approved by a vote of 52-48 in the Senate, the closest of the 20th century. He has, in a memoir in 2007 and before and since, continued to have bitterness and resentment toward liberals and his other critics, and said when he was confirmed that he would confound the “damn liberals” by staying on the Court for 43 years, the age he was when appointed, which would surpass Justice William O. Douglas’s 36 years on the Court, the longest in Supreme Court history. His wife strangely contacted Anita Hill last year to ask for an “apology”, which was not forthcoming, but continues to simmer in his wife’s mind after a generation.

Thomas’s wife has been involved in ethical problems as the head of a conservative organization working against the Obama Health Care law, and in other ways, working with the Tea Party Movement, while her husband is involved in decisions where his wife’s activities create ethical problems for him, although he is unwilling to react to any criticism by recusing himself from cases, as creating a conflict of interest. He does not care what his critics say!

On the Court, he is seen in many ways as the MOST conservative member, even more than Antonin Scalia in some ways. He is well liked by his colleagues, but almost never asks any questions in oral arguments before the Court. He gives lectures around the country, but avoids the news media. He comes across as bitter and odd in many ways, but also arrogant and hard to fathom.

Thomas has shown willingness to strike down case law going back decades, and sometimes even a century. He is the only one to argue for consistent return to the “original” meaning of the Constitution when it was adopted in 1789, even more than Antonin Scalia. He sees the Court as having gone the wrong way in many areas of the law, and wanting reversal of past rulings.

Thomas alone believes that states should be able to establish an official religion; believes teenagers have no free speech rights at all; believes business should not be regulated and their commercial speech and campaign activities should not be regulated; wants to strike down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act; and backs the President’s ability to hold an American citizen in prison indefinitely without charges or review by the courts.

Thomas refuses to see prisoner rights as legitimate and is against affirmative action to the extreme, even though he benefited from it himself! He spends his time only with people who agree with his hard line views, which many think is a shame, as it indicates he has a closed mind.

So Clarence Thomas continues to have a long range, in many ways deleterious effect on the Supreme Court, and probably will for close to another generation, as he predicted!

Sarah Palin And Michele Bachmann: The Advancement Of Ignorance, Stupidity And The Destruction Of The Republican Party! :(

The Republican Party has a major problem that will destroy all chances of its success in the future, and will be a “gift that keeps on giving” to the opposition Democratic Party: former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, both potential candidates for the Presidential nomination in 2012!

Both ladies, admittedly attractive in appearance, are a true nightmare for the party, and both are a major blow to the promotion of women in politics!

They are a true embarrassment to womanhood itself, as they personify total ignorance and stupidity, not only about science but also about history, and really, it seems, about ANY area of human knowledge!

It is not an issue of conservatism being attacked, as indeed the concept of women as conservatives can be legitimate. It is simply the reality that every time either of these women open up their mouth and speak, they make the eyes roll into the back of the head of any intelligent person who observes and listens.

Does either lady have the ability to EVER express anything that makes sense or shows knowledge, or is seen as rational, sane thinking? Apparently, the answer is NO! 🙁

Michele Bachmann had just asserted that the Founding Fathers ended slavery, failing to realize that the Civil War 75 years later ended slavery. She had just come from a lecture about the Constitution from Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, who had “lectured” a group of Tea Party members of Congress about that sacred document, which he has totally distorted with his ridiculous “originalist” interpretation, including supposedly, his recent statement that the Constitution did not protect women, because they are not mentioned in the Constitution! That statement by Scalia also makes one roll his eyes to the back of the head! Can Scalia really believe that, and if so, why is he on the Supreme Court?

But, for now, getting away from the loss of status and prestige of the Supreme Court by the behavior of some of its members, a subject that will be addressed again in the near future, before we can recover from Michele Bachmann and her inane, ludicrous statements for the “umpteenth time”, before we can fully calm down, along comes Sarah Palin, again attempting to “hog” the spotlight with her moronic statements and tweets! 🙁

In reaction to President Obama’s State of the Union address, Palin reacted to the “winning the future” line of the President, by employing WTF as an obscene statement that everyone knows what it is, but which I will not explain here! LOL

Is that appropriate for a potential Presidential candidate to use in political discourse out loud with the media? Is this dignified and acceptable for someone who wants to be taken seriously as a legitimate voice? Is there a need to answer this? 🙁

Adding insult to injury, Palin proceeded to state that the “Sputnik” reference of Obama was not appropriately used, as the Soviet Union of old had “won” the space race, but that it had led to their downfall!

Such an assertion makes one want to gag and throw up! Oh really, the Russians won the space race? It was the Soviets who landed on the moon in 1969? And their being involved in competition in space is what caused their downfall, rather than their involvement in Afghanistan, and their reckless military spending, a policy that is the major cause of our national debt and deficit today, and which Palin fails to see and understand?

The responsible leaders of the Republican party have to be dismayed by these two women, both endorsed by the Tea Party Movement, who are separately and together destroying the credibility of the Republican Party for the long haul!

One would wish, somehow, that we could put a muzzle on their mouths, and send them the message, shut up and be gone! 🙁

But, of course, there is freedom of speech, and neither lady will shut up, and so the Democratic Party sits by observing events, having a lot of good laughs, and enjoying “the gift that keeps on giving!”

But we must also mourn the destruction of both science and history that these women, and those who believe in them, represent, and in fact the destruction of KNOWLEDGE!

As Bill Maher, the comedian, expressed a few weeks ago, if the Founding Fathers were to come back today and witness the mediocrity of today’s Republican leadership, and the role of these two women, and a few members of the Supreme Court, they would be stunned, and certainly comment that women should never have been given the right to vote, let alone to run for public office!

And that would be indeed sad, as many women have contributed a great deal to our political discourse, and they stand by and mourn the embarrassment to their gender represented by the two morons, Bachmann and Palin! 🙁