"Government by organized money is just as dangerous as government by organized mob."
- Franklin D. Roosevelt -
"...in a democracy, powerful interests must not be allowed to drown out the voices of ordinary citizens."
- Barack Obama -
"The people of this country, not special interest big money, should be the source of all political power."
- The late great Senator Paul Wellstone -
For many years now, we have heard conservatives rail against activist judges, decrying their supposed "legislating from the bench." After the Warren and Burger Supreme Courts expanded civil liberties in the ares of self-expression, civil rights, consumer protection, and a woman's right to choose, these conservatives called for less judicial activism and the need for "strict constructionist" Supreme Court justices. Like most of their phrases, this was simply doublespeak for more authoritarian, pro-business, even corporatist, judges. With the narrow 5-4 conservative majority in today's Roberts court, they have at last realized their aims. The effect has been disastrous for the majority of the country, has empowered and strengthened greedy corporations at our expense, and that is why I am calling for THE IMPEACHMENT OF THESE ULTRA-CONSERVATIVE JUSTICES!
I know, I know: with the House of Representatives in conservative hands, my call will not be realized for a while yet, if ever. But it is something I believe we must push for in every new, succeeding Congress. For this court has reaffirmed the very errant notion that money is free speech, that corporations have the same rights as individuals, and has upheld the constitutionality of a number of clearly UNconstitutional authoritarian laws (the Patriot Act, the suspension of habeas corpus for those accused of terrorism). It has also generally supported an authoritarian line when it comes to cases of "executive privilege." In so doing, they have trampled all over the First and Fourth Amendments. That, my friends, is the basis for my complaint and, in my viewpoint, constitutes "high crimes and misdemeanors."
A recent issue of Fortune magazine features Chief Justice John Roberts on its cover, and does a fairly extensive article on the court. Part of the article reads:
"The Roberts Court is also widely seen as pro-business —”Supreme Court Inc.,” the New York Times Magazine called it in 2008. Since 2006, according to the Constitutional Accountability Center, the Roberts Court has ruled for business interests in 68% of the cases in which the U.S. Chamber of Commerce submitted friend-of-the-court briefs. During a comparable span (1981-1986) drawn from the Berger Court years, the Chamber’s win ratio was just 43%."
Let's look at these four main culprits who have done so much to trim your rights and aid the very richest people in the country, at your expense:
Chief Justice John Roberts, a George W. Bush appointee, is everything Bush could have wanted in a justice: young, pro-business, anti-regulation, and socially and economically very conservative. Like many of today's conservatives, he is smug and arrogant, and once his mind is made up, no one in the world will be able to change it. An extremely bad choice for Chief Justice from an extremely bad President!
Associate Justice Clarence Thomas. We have Bush's father, George H. W. Bush, to thank for this, the most conserrvative, and arguably the worst, justice in history. On average, from 1994 to 2004, Thomas and arch-conservative Abtonin Scalia had an 86.7% voting alignment, the highest on the Court. He considtantly votes in favor of the privileged and powerful, and has followed a path of very narrow deviation from what he views as the true meaning of the Constitution and its amendments. He opposes affirmative action even though he is black.He sat idly by while his second wife Ginni actively campaigned for the Tea Party in the last election, this being a major breach of protocol.
Associate Justice Antonin Scalia. We can thank the Alzheimer's-ridden Ronald Reagan and his controversial Attorney General Edwin Meese for giving us this arch-conservative turkey. He is now the most senior Associate Justice. An argumentative and combative man, and stubborn as well, he too has broken major protocol by agreeing to address Michele Bachmann's new closed-door "Conservative Constitutional Seminar" for newly-elected Teapublican House members. Noted George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley has said, [this suggests] "an alliance between a conservative justice and a conservative member of Congress." In a letter to Bachmann, executive director of the American Constitution Society Caroline Fredrickson stated "you do not intend to provide members of Congress with a comprehensive understanding of the Constitution, but instead will offer an interpretive approach that yields results consistent with the political views of Tea Party caucus members."
Associate Justice Samuel Alito rounds out this group of hardcore conservatives. Based on his work in Ronald Reagan's Justice Department and his rulings as an appellate judge, critics claimed his views to be "outside the mainstream." They pointed, quite correctly, to Alito's dissent as a Circuit Court judge in the Planned Parenthood v. Casey case, wherein Alito voted to uphold a part of the law that required a husband be notified when his wife sought an abortion. When the case eventually came before the U.S. Supreme Court, the Court rejected Alito's reasoning. Critics have also pointed to his 1985 application for a promotion in the Justice Department, in which Alito stated that he had been motivated to go to law school by conservative writings criticizing the Warren Court's decisions in the areas of criminal procedure. He wrote that he was proud to represent the administration's legal view that "racial and ethnic quotas should not be allowed and that the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion." During his Supreme Court confirmation hearings, Alito explained that, while the statements were accurate at the time, they were written as part of an application for a political appointment in the conservative Reagan administration and did not necessarily reflect his views as a judge. Then why did he supposedly compromise his values in such a way? Could it be he was following the modern conservative method of saying or doing anything just so you get what you want? Alito has also issued opinions that made it much more difficult for victims of discrimination to get to court and prove their cases. Alito’s opinions on issues of religion raise real questions about his commitment to the fundamental principle of the separation of church and state. He does appear to look the other way when it comes to government unconstitutionally endorsing religion. This tendency has been especially obvious in a pair of cases dealing with fairly elaborate Christmas holiday displays in and around government buildings.
These justices have to a man endorsed decisions that uphold the status quo and authoritarianism. Just like the Chamber of Comkmerce they so often side with, they are anti-worker, anti-labor union, pro-"free trade" and and pro-establishment all the way. They side with the powerful against the powerless. They ignore important past legal precedent and try to supplant it with crazily modified opinions like last year's disgusting Citizens United v. the Federal Elections Commission. This makes them anti the overwhelming majority of the country, and is the main reason I am urging us to IMPEACH THESE ULTRA-CONSERVATIVE JUSTICES OF THE SUPREME COURT!
OK, you got your extended Bush tax cuts for the rich, and you have established control over the House of Representatives, and you've been Speaker of the House for 20 days. NOW, WHERE ARE THE JOBS, MR. BOEHNER?
UP NEXT: MY JOURNEY TO CUBA (PART I)!