EnduringSense

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Posts Tagged ‘Justice’

Late Justice Antonin Scalia

Posted by Steve Markowitz on February 17, 2016

Justice Antonin Scalia passed away last weekend at the age of 79.  His conservative view of the Constitution resulted in Progressives demonizing him.  Irrespective of this, Scalia, a graduate of Harvard Law School, was an eminent Constitutional scholar, believing in a strict interpretation of this document.

Almost immediately Scalia’s death became a political issue.  President Obama wasted no time announcing he would nominate a replacement.  Not to be outdone by this precipitous move, Republicans announced they wouldn’t even consider an Obama nominee, stating that they should be left to the next president.

Republicans in the Senate have the numbers and ability to keep an Obama nominee from being confirmed.  It is therefore hard to imagine why they would respond so ineptly to the Obama challenge.

Obama and his Leftist allies claim foul of the Republicans obstructionist behavior.  However, it was not too long ago when then Senator Obama took a similar approach with the George W. Bush nominee, Alito.  When confronted with this duplicative behavior at a recent press conference, Obama responded with a rather comical two-step stating (video posted below): “I think what’s fair to say is that how judicial nominations have evolved over time is not historically the fault of any single party.  This has become just one more extension of politics.  ….”  Translation, the Democrats current whining is but crocodile tears.

Irrespective of the current political maneuvering, Antonin Scalia will go down in history as a legal scholar and fine jurist.  In honor of the man, we post some of his memorable quotes below.

Constitution – “That’s the argument of flexibility and it goes something like this: The Constitution is over 200 years old and societies change. It has to change with society, like a living organism, or it will become brittle and break.  But you would have to be an idiot to believe that.  The Constitution is not a living organism, it is a legal document. It says something and doesn’t say other things.” (National Review)

Bill of Rights – A Bill of Rights that means what the majority wants it to mean is worthless. (Star-Telegram)

Death Penalty – This is an execution, not surgery.  Where does that come from, that you must find the method of execution that causes the least pain?  We have approved electrocution.  We have approved death by firing squad.  (Student News Daily)

2nd Amendment – Undoubtedly some think that the Second Amendment is outmoded in a society where our standing army is the pride of our Nation, where well-trained police forces provide personal security, and where gun violence is a serious problem.  That is perhaps debatable, but what is not debatable is that it is not the role of this Court to pronounce the Second Amendment extinct. (ABC News)

Appointed Judges – As long as judges tinker with the Constitution to ‘do what the people want,’ instead of what the document actually commands, politicians who pick and confirm new federal judges will naturally want only those who agree with them politically. (LA Times)

Democracy – Persuade your fellow citizens it’s a good idea and pass a law.  That’s what democracy is all about.  It’s not about nine superannuated judges who have been there too long, imposing these demands on society. (New York Times)

Good Judge – If you’re going to be a good and faithful judge, you have to resign yourself to the fact that you’re not always going to like the conclusions you reach.  If you like them all the time, you’re probably doing something wrong. (Romper)

Posted in Politics, Supreme Court | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Supreme Court Justices Serve too Long

Posted by Steve Markowitz on May 7, 2014

Supreme Court Justices are appointed by our presidents and are given lifelong tenure. The logic behind this tenure was in the effort to keep the Court from being politicized. Unfortunately, that has not been the result.

For at least recent decades, sitting Justices of the Supreme Court have been divided into two main groups, the liberal and conservative wings. They often vote as a block that results in many fairly evenly split decisions. This reality is evidence of a politicized court that makes decisions based on biases in interpreting the law, rather than objective interpretations of it or the Constitution.

ruth-bader_ginsburgIn addition, the lifelong tenure for Justices results in decisions being made by legal minds that are often long pass their prime. For example, former Justice Jon Paul Stevens stepped down from the Court in 2010 at the age of 90. While Stevens may have been sharp for his age, it is reasonable to conclude that his last years in the Court were hindered by declining capabilities.

Currently, the Court’s oldest Justice is Ruth Bader Ginsburg who is 81 years old. In addition, Ginsburg has had serious and ongoing health issues including two bouts with cancer. Again, it is reasonable to conclude that her intellectual capabilities have been declining. However, during a recent interview Ginsburg said: “I do know that once I feel I am slipping, I will not stay here, because this is a very hard job. But that time, thank goodness, has not yet come.” With all due respect Ms. Ginsburg is not capable of making that call.

Progressives like former Justice Stevens and current Justice Ginsburg take the view that the Constitution needs to be a dynamic document, especially with changes in society. Taking such a view seems in conflict with remaining on the Court so late in life when their own values have been so ingrained.

Posted in Supreme Court, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

8 Quotes Common Sense by Justice Clarence Thomas

Posted by Steve Markowitz on March 9, 2014

Clerance ThomasClarence Thomas, born in Savannah Georgia, came from humble beginnings.  Thomas obtained his undergraduate degree at the College of the Holy Cross and his law degree from Yale Law School.  His professional career includes being the working in private practice, Assistant Attorney General in Missouri, a legislative assistant to a US Senator, being Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the US Department of Education, serving as chairman of the Equal Opportunity Commission, a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for DC, and since 1991 an Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court.

While Thomas’s credentials speak for themselves, he has been the target of attacks and racism from the Left.  During his 1991 Supreme Court justice confirmation hearing, Thomas was accused by Anita Hill of making sexual comments in the workplace.  This accusation caused quite a stir during those hearings.  Even assuming the claim’s accuracy, it is interesting to compare the Left’s reactions to their muted response when female co-workers women have been mistreated by high-profile liberals, including the Kennedys and Bill Clinton.

Thomas believes in a strict interpretation of the U.S. Constitution with a conservative bent.  It is these views that have made him a target for the Left’s vicious attacks.  Nothing causes more fear in the Left than people of color and women who do not believe they need the protection of the liberal establishment in order to make it in America.  It is that fear that drives their hatred towards Clarence Thomas, the late Margaret Thatcher, and so many other African-Americans and women who dare to go against liberal dogma.

Below are eight quotes from Justice Clarence Thomas that help show the logic intellect of the man.

1. “To define each of us by our race is nothing short of a denial of our humanity.”

2. “My sadness is that we are probably today more race and difference-conscious than I was in the 1960s when I went to school.  To my knowledge, I was the first black kid in Savannah, Georgia, to go to a white (Catholic) school.  Rarely did the issue of race come up.”

3. “I don’t believe in quotas.  America was founded on a philosophy of individual rights, not group rights.”

4. “The black people I knew came from different places and backgrounds – social, economic, even ethnic- yet the color of our skin was somehow supposed to make us identical in spite of our differences.  I didn’t buy it.  Of course we had all experienced racism in one way or another, but did that mean that we had to think alike?”

5. “Differences in race, differences in sex, somebody doesn’t look at you right, somebody says something.  Everybody is sensitive.  If I had been as sensitive as that in the 1960s, I’d still be in Savannah.”

6. “Every person in this room has endured a slight.  Every person. Somebody has said something that has hurt their feelings or did something to them — left them out.”

7. “The absolute worst I have ever been treated, the worst things that have been done to me, the worst things that have been said about me, are by northern liberal elites, not by the people of Savannah, Georgia.”

8. “Why do you think I get in so much controversy?  People have a model of what they think a black person should think.”

Posted in Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Leftist Press Attacks Obama

Posted by Steve Markowitz on May 13, 2013

ObamajpgIt is with little satisfaction that those of us who have been writing about the tyranny of government under President Obama have been vindicated.  Today is a red letter date in that vindication, a culmination of three major scandals within the Obama Administration.

Benghazigate – It is apparent that the White House falsified the talking points used to promote the theory that an obscure video was somehow related to the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya that led to the deaths of four Americans including the US ambassador.  At least, this involves lying to the American people.

IRSgate – The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has admitted to and apologized for going after tax-exempt organizations with conservative political leanings.  It still is to be determined how far up the food-chain in Washington this investigation will lead, but it is obviously someone with Leftists/Progressive leanings.  This involves using the IRS as a tool (hammer) to badger ones’ political opponents.

APgate – Late today another scandal went public with the announcement that 20 Associated Press (AP) telephone lines were bugged for over two months involving possibly hundreds of reporters.  This type of direct attack on the press by the US Justice Department has not been seen since the presidency of Richard Nixon.  This is a direct attack on freedom of the press by the government.

p morganIt was only a few days ago that the above issues were either unheard of or ignored by the mainstream media.  The culmination of the scandals is too much for even the Leftist press to continue to ignore.  Remarkably, CNN’s Leftist moderator Piers Morgan this evening went on the offensive against the Obama Administration during an interview with Democratic Congressman Elijah Cummings.  Even Cummings begrudgingly admitted his own concern for America’s democracy, given the growing e commingsscandals.

The scandals prove the tyranny of government that was of such concern for our Founders.  They also show the incompetence of a colossal government that even with the best of intentions, spirals out-of-control in a lust for power.

This Blogger will and this posting as it started, without any sense of satisfaction for being proven correct about Barack Obama’s disrespect of the Constitution and individual rights.  Instead, I hope that the Country will seize on the serious challenge of the tyranny of an overreaching government and bring the United States back to its Constitutional roots.

Posted in President Obama | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

S&P to be Sued by US Over Bond Ratings

Posted by Steve Markowitz on February 20, 2013

The New York Times reported that the US Justice Department will file a civil suit against Standard & Poor’s Rating Service.  According to the report, the Justice Department claims that S&P fraudulently rated mortgage bonds that played a role in creating the financial meltdown of 2008.  The Justice Department indicated it will seek in excess of $1 billion in damages.

In submitting this story, a Blog reader said:

“Let’s see if I’ve got this right: The banks that made the bad loans got bailed out and no bankers went to jail.  But, now the government now wants to put the rating agency on the hook for $1 billion.  In other words, failure to report a crime is worse than committing the crime itself.  Makes sense to me!”

To the comment above this Blog adds that when it comes to government, logic is irrelevant.  Is it possible that the US government is threatening S&P to keep it from downgrading US debt in the future?

Posted in Corruption, Debt | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Justice Department Memo Authorizes Assassination of American Citizens

Posted by Steve Markowitz on February 5, 2013

NBC News’s investigative correspondent, Michael Isikoff, reported on a chilling story of governmental overreach.  Isikoff reported on a confidential Justice Department memo that authorizes the US government to assassinate American citizens located outside of the United States.  Should the government conclude that such individuals are “senior operational leaders” of known terrorist organizations, they have the legal authority to assassinate such individuals even without evidence of imminent threat to the United States.

The shocking Justice Department memo is likely created to be cover for future legal actions that may be taken against Americans who authorize this ultimate of sanctions.  In September 2011 a US drone strike in Yemen killed American citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan who were supposedly involved with Al Qaeda.

Deputy legal director of the ACLU, Jameel Jaffer, rightfully said of the Administration’s plan:

This is a chilling document.  Basically, it argues that the government has the right to carry out the extrajudicial killing of an American citizen.  …  It recognizes some limits on the authority it sets out, but the limits are elastic and vaguely defined, and it’s easy to see how they could be manipulated.”

It is remarkable how far we have come in four years.  Shortly after his first election Barack Obama and his Atty. Gen. Eric Holder threaten criminal action against government employees involved in waterboarding suspected terrorists during the Bush administration.  Since then the President has used assassinations without due process on the same type of individuals and creates a legal memo for justification.  Where is the moral outrage from the Left?

President Obama is indeed a uniter.  Who else could have gotten this Blogger and the ACLU on the same page on an important issue!

Posted in ACLU, Civil Liberties | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Elena Kagan Succumbs to Washington Doubletalk

Posted by Steve Markowitz on June 30, 2010

While attention in the Senate’s confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan focuses on her legal and political philosophies, one issue is being brushed aside: the natural corruption that envelopes most that go to Washington.  In this case, Ms. Kagan has done an about-face on strong beliefs she publicized prior to her nomination.

In 1995 while a law professor in Chicago, Kagan attacked the Supreme Court confirmation process as “vapid and hollow charade”, further calling the process “official lovefests.”  She embellished these views further by also stating:

  • Senators today do not insist that any nominee reveal what kind of Justice she would make, by disclosing her views on important legal issues.”
  • The Senate’s consideration of a nominee, and particularly the Senate’s confirmation hearings, ought to focus on substantive issues.”
  • The Senate ought to view the hearings as an opportunity to gain knowledge and promote public understanding of what the nominee believes the court should do and how she would affect its conduct.”
  • The critical inquiry … concerns the votes she would cast, the perspective she would add (or augment), and the direction in which she would move the institution.”

No matter what ones political views are, Kagan’s frank 1995 assessment was refreshing and correct.  Unfortunately, since being nominate for the High Court, Kagan’s honesty has taken a back seat in her effort to obtain the judgeship.

During the Senate hearings Kagan refused to respond in substance to questions relating to her views on terrorist rights, gun ownership rights and abortion.  When Senators questioned Kagan about her refusal to answer the questions in light of her 1995 comments, she responded by:  “I think that that was wrong.  I think that – in particular, that it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to talk about what I think about past cases – you know, to grade cases – because those cases themselves might again come before the court.”

Kagan’s explanation for her morphed beliefs leads to one of two conclusions:  Either her legal opinions are unstable or she has come to a new conclusion due to political expediency.  Neither is comforting, although political expediency and Washington double-talk is the likely reason.

While the White House defended Kagan’s posturing, calling her “open and forthcoming”, their good comrade Arlen Specter cut off Ms. Kagan complaining that “I don’t think I’m making too much progress.”

While Kagan may be qualified to be a Supreme Court Justice, she has shown th weakness of lack of principle.  Her willingness to subvert convictions in exchange for power is the unfortunate norm in Washington.  Politicians and judges are no longer the public servants our founders envisioned for us.  Instead, they have become a privileged class that plumbers the Nation’s wealth and tramples on our Constitution.  Those surprised by the rise in the Tea Party movement need look no further for the reasons.

Posted in Politics, Supreme Court | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Professor Gates & the Lockerbie Bomber

Posted by Steve Markowitz on August 24, 2009

Two seemingly independent events met this past week, the result of separate comments made by President Obama.  Let’s start with a background on both events.

Professor Gates

On July 16, 2009, Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. returned to his house, butAPTOPIX Harvard Scholar Disorderly could not enter due to a defective door.  A neighbor called the police, who when they arrived, asked Professor Gates for identification.  Professor Gates went ballistic, immediately assuming that he was being racially profiled.  Police Sergeant James Crowley arrested Gates for disturbing the peace, but later dropped the charges.

When President Obama was questioned about the incident, he stated that while he did not have the facts, Officer Crowley acted “stupidly”.  After a public outcry towards Obama’s precipitous comment, the President responded with a weak apology:

“Because this has been ratcheting up and I helped contribute to ratcheting it up, I want to make clear that in my choice of words I unfortunately gave an impression that I was maligning the Cambridge Police Department or Sgt. Crowley specifically and I could have calibrated those words differently.”

No Mr. President, you did not “give an impression” that you were maligning the police, you maligned them, period!  And what does “I could have calibrated those words differently” suppose to mean?  A simple; “I apologize for the error” would have done nicely, thank you. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Diplomacy, President Obama | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »