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Thread: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't?

  1. #1
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    Default Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't?

    There are times when a lie is so blatantly obvious, that it is impossible to believe... yet some people will persist in trying to sustain a myth, often with a sparkle in their eye and a poorly concealed grin, revealing that they themselves know that it's simply false.... but they're going to persist in the charade... nonetheless.

    This is the impression I get, as I watch the Kavanaugh hearings... especially right at this very moment, as Orin Hatch is saying that Kavanaugh is 'not an ideologue'....

    What utter bullsh|t. Kavanaugh's selection is quite specifically BECAUSE he is an ideologue... and the liberal SCOTUS justices are chosen for more or less the exact same reason.

    We have lived through years of 5-4 decisions, falling EXACTLY on partisan lines, fully expected, with virtually NO surprises (save for a very rare occasion, like when Roberts voted to 'save' the ACA).

    The process of manipulating Supreme Court nominees is blatantly clear. The majority party can simply block any nominee of a President of the opposite party, such as what was done to Merrick Garland... and then, they can block the accessibility of the full record of a nominee for examination by a nominee, like they are doing with Kavanaugh.

    It wasn't always thus. Robert Bork, who was about as odious a nominee as I've ever seen, was at least permitted to be questioned by the judiciary committee, and his failure to secure a vote had little to do with the manipulations of the committee itself.... he failed because he expressed some pretty far-right, 'out-of-the-mainstream' views. That's how the process is supposed to work... and used to work.

    Today's hearing is nothing more than video spectacle. We already KNOW that Kavanaugh's record as White House staff secretary will be suppressed... over 100,000 pages worth. We already KNOW that the judiciary committee has the voted to approve his nomination... and we already KNOW that the Senate has the votes to confirm him, by perhaps one or two votes (not the 57 votes that were required, for MOST of the history of this country).

    It's a shameful day in American governance.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    “Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won.” – President Obama to House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, January 23, 2009.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by RedBoatFl View Post
    “Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won.” – President Obama to House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, January 23, 2009.
    What are the 'consequences' you speak of?

    'Anything goes'?
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    All legal actions.
    Don't have to like it.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by RedBoatFl View Post
    All legal actions.
    Don't have to like it.
    'Legal' doesn't always coincide with 'right'.... and if the circumstances were reversed, Republicans would be screaming bloody murder about the very same things.

    Sheldon Whitehouse, in his opening remarks, provides possibly the most exhaustive and concise set of proofs about how the SCOTUS has descended into a branch of government every bit as partisan and political as the other two.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by RedBoatFl View Post
    “Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won.” – President Obama to House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, January 23, 2009.
    You guys always truck that out and forget Dick Cheny & Karl Rove said the same thing back in the earlier 00s.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    You might enjoy Federalist 78.

    http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa78.htm

    The intent, in part, was to secure the independence of the judiciary. It is a lifetime appointment for that reason. Many justices have assumed the duties of their positions faithfully and not decided cases in was “expected” by those who put them in place.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    You might enjoy Federalist 78.

    http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa78.htm

    The intent, in part, was to secure the independence of the judiciary. It is a lifetime appointment for that reason. Many justices have assumed the duties of their positions faithfully and not decided cases in was “expected” by those who put them in place.
    You might reconsider, after watching Sheldon Whitehouse's opening remarks in the Kavanaugh hearings.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    You might enjoy blowback from the people, as this 'govt' gets ever more authoritarian.
    There's a lot of things they didn't tell me when I signed on with this outfit....

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    I’ll try to catch it later. I cant imagine a ststarment that would undermine the wisdom of the structure.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    that's probably because you've read too much Federalist garbage.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I’ll try to catch it later. I cant imagine a ststarment that would undermine the wisdom of the structure.
    Not every supreme court judge has ended up essentially rubber-stamping the politics of the partisans that nominated and confirmed them. There have been some major 'surprises' in the past.... Earl Warren is one such example.

    However, you cannot deny the facts which are contained in the record. Whitehouse listed, in lengthy detail, to overwhelming number of SCOTUS decisions, ruled 5-4 by the obvious and expected justices, which were uniformly in favor of corporations, the wealthy, and Christian evangelists, and equally uniformly against the interests of ordinary citizens, consumers, and the disadvantaged.

    It's yet another case of something looking and talking like a duck.....

    The pattern of SCOTUS decisions in the past few decades, almost always in 5-4 decisions... is absolutely undeniable.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    If a sufficient number of people don’t like the structure, it can be changed. Do you have an alternative in mind?

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quick search so suject to correction.

    Since 2000, 36% unanimous, 19% 5:4.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Looking back, I may have missed your point. When looking only at the 5:4 decisions, they go a certain way?

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    As I mentioned in another post, I guess republicans are happy with the new congressional precedence they are setting. Instead of 60 votes it only requires 51 for an SC justice (new rule) and only 10% of documents needs to be released, and WH executive privilege can conceal pretty much anything.

    I wonder if they believe they will be in power forever or maybe they really don't care.
    Tom

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    If a sufficient number of people don’t like the structure, it can be changed. Do you have an alternative in mind?
    The system, to a certain extent, prevents reform. Reform would require politicians to vote against their personal pecuniary interests. Consider, for example, John Kyl, former senator from Arizona, who has just been named to fill in for John McCain until the next election. Kyl served for decades in the Senate... earning the statutory $174,000/yr... but, after 'retiring' from the Senate, has been earning millions per year as a lobbyist, trading on his connections and relationships he developed while serving... and, as we know, lobbyists aren't representing ordinary people as constituents, but special interests. This 'career path' is VERY common... and it doesn't accrue to the benefit of the country... it just provides greater and greater power to the wealthy and connected.

    Now, what would be a logical reform to deal with this problem? Legislating against retired senators and congressmen from becoming lobbyists, for at least a nominal period of time, would be the obvious path.... but that would require legislators to actually vote against their own personal interests. It's a logjam that cannot be overcome, can it?
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    Quick search so suject to correction.

    Since 2000, 36% unanimous, 19% 5:4.
    The ratio isn't meaningful, because there are plenty of pro forma cases which do NOT affect the very fundamental issues of greatest concern. Of the 5:4 decisions, consider how many were decided in favor of corporations, the wealthy, and the influential... and how many were decided in favor of ordinary citizens, the weak, the disadvantaged, the environment, etc.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    I thought your post was gently advocating a change the nomination process.

    On the numbers, yes, not hearing a case can be meaningful as well.

    It sounds like you are concerned that some number cases were decided infavor of corporate interests, but not necessarily wrongly decided. Correct?

    In terms of independence from political influence, are you suggesting a different system? Something other than lifetime appointment of qualified jurists that would be less partisan?

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I thought your post was gently advocating a change the nomination process.

    On the numbers, yes, not hearing a case can be meaningful as well.

    It sounds like you are concerned that some number cases were decided infavor of corporate interests, but not necessarily wrongly decided. Correct?

    In terms of independence from political influence, are you suggesting a different system? Something other than lifetime appointment of qualified jurists that would be less partisan?
    A person who believes the president is above the law has no place on ANY court, or at the bar, or in any job whatsoever that has anything at all to do with law and justice.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    I have no idea why you persist with the myth. Maye because if you admit that the USSC is a politically manipulated institution it leaves the ultimate legal authority in the US compromised, if not actually corrupted.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by Norman Bernstein View Post
    What are the 'consequences' you speak of?

    'Anything goes'?
    Their pretty simple, as one of the hearing speakers said today, if you want supreme court nominees you first have to win elections, from what I heard from the democrats at the hearings, their not trying too hard to be in that position.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    We persist in the shared imagination because we each believe our beliefs will be shared by those in power. I believe the republicans have set a precedent in the last few years that one day they will see manifest itself in their worst fears regarding the supreme court.
    Quote Originally Posted by isla View Post
    It's difficult to explain virtue signalling, as I was just saying to my Muslim friends over a fair-trade coffee in our local feminist bookshop.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by woodpile View Post
    Their pretty simple, as one of the hearing speakers said today, if you want supreme court nominees you first have to win elections, from what I heard from the democrats at the hearings, their not trying too hard to be in that position.
    "if you want Supreme Court nominees you first have to steal elections,"

    Fixed that forya.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by woodpile View Post
    Their pretty simple, as one of the hearing speakers said today, if you want supreme court nominees you first have to win elections, from what I heard from the democrats at the hearings, their not trying too hard to be in that position.
    Mostly true unless you are a black president who is a democrat than who needs rules.
    Tom

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Never thought it was.

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Didn't Kennedy become progressively more liberal as time went on?

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    Default Re: Why do we persist with the myth that the SCOTUS is a non-partisan branch of gov't

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I thought your post was gently advocating a change the nomination process.
    The Democrats were wrong in lowering the threshold for lower court nominee confirmations... and the Republicans made the same error, with a far greater consequence, in lowering the threshold for Supreme Court nominees. A 2/3rds threshold should be the standard, to insure that a dominant party with a slim margin cannot completely ignore the minority. This kind of partisanship is bad, under virtually EVERY circumstance, rendering compromise and bipartisanship irrelevant... and it's NOT good for the country.

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    It sounds like you are concerned that some number cases were decided infavor of corporate interests, but not necessarily wrongly decided. Correct?
    'Wrongly decided'? The terminology really doesn't apply. The 'rightness' or 'wrongness' of a decision isn't an absolute that can be determined by a simple reading of the Constitution.... it's a function of politics and ideology, not law. When the overwhelming majority of 5:4 decisions are in favor of the wealthy, corporate interests, and the influential, and against the interests of the ordinary man, the disadvantaged, the poor, etc.... that is when you know that the Supreme Court is a political organization.

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    In terms of independence from political influence, are you suggesting a different system? Something other than lifetime appointment of qualified jurists that would be less partisan?
    There are lots of things that could correct the problem. In fact, an even higher threshold for confirmation... 75% or more... would insure that no candidate with an identifiable political agenda or ideological bias would ever be put on the court. I also think that 'lifetime' appointments, which were intended to insure (inadequately) that justices wouldn't be political, goes a bit too far. a 16 year term would make more sense.... more than long enough to insulate the justices from political considerations, but short enough so that fresh ideas and interpretations get a fair hearing in chambers.
    "Reason and facts are sacrificed to opinion and myth. Demonstrable falsehoods are circulated and recycled as fact. Narrow minded opinion refuses to be subjected to thought and analysis. Too many now subject events to a prefabricated set of interpretations, usually provided by a biased media source. The myth is more comfortable than the often difficult search for truth."







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