Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Legislative Whims

The NYT editorializes about Justice Scalia today. Recoiling from a recent speech in which Scalia questioned whether the nine unelected judges should act as moral arbiters for the nations, the NYT opines:

The implications of Justice Scalia’s remarks are sweeping. Many of the most central principles of American constitutional law - from the right to a court-appointed lawyer to the right to buy contraception - have emerged from the court’s evolving sense of the meaning of constitutional clauses. Justice Scalia seems to be suggesting that many, or perhaps all, of these rights should exist only at the whim of legislatures.

Oh dear lord, not the legislatures! You mean that the elites might be subjected to the will of the representatives of the filthy, unwashed masses! There’s a lot of Red State folks in that group. Why, I bet most of them have never even been to Martha’s Vineyard! How can they determine my "rights!" Far better for to promote the NYT agenda through the whims of the unelected judges!

Of course, the NYT at base suffers from the modern delusion that the question of whether something is constitutional really asks whether it is "good" or whether we as a society (or as elites) like it. But of course, the Constitution actually only covers a few baseline issues. Everything good is not in the Constitution. To protect the NYT’s expansive panoply of rights, the Founders and the Constitution requires you to turn to the filthy masses represented in the legislatures.

Discussions - 6 Comments

Well...I guess EDUCATED people (like Supreme Court least those on the Left) don’t have whims. They must have only circumspect opinions that reflect the wisdom of superior intellect.

One of the very best examples I’ve seen of the hubris of the blue-state Left. Maybe we should let them join Canada after all.

Beautiful, Robert

We toothless hilljacks and our whimsical legislators.

Back to my banjo...

I love that "evolving sense of the meaning of constitutional clauses". According to SCOTUS justices like Kennedy, the constitution is evolving so fast that what started out as a lungfish in the morning has become a platypus by noon and a homo erectus by supper time.

Justice Scalia seems to be suggesting that many, or perhaps all, of these rights should exist only at the whim of legislatures.

Hmmm, at the whim of legislatures. Is the NYT suggesting we go back to the "Devine right of Kings?" Probably not, more likely the rights of philosopher kings. Certainly is shows why the left was so doubtful about democracy in Iraq. They don’t believe in it even for America.

The irony is amazing.

In the name of the people, the people must be ignored.

In the name of legality, Constitutional structure must be circumvented.

If you would like to see what type of world the liberal desires to construct, cast your eyes towards Europe and the new EU constitution. It is a profoundly anti-democratic instrument. You could term it government for the elites, by the elites and of the elites.

No wonder a recent leaked CIA study estimated the EU would implode within fifteen years.

But unfortunately, within the legal community, Scalia’s views are in the minority. That’s why he has decided to speak out, he understands how important this is to the continuance of our Constitutional tradition.

The New York Times article (perhaps unknowingly) describe the new morality of the secular left: that which represents rights for their chosen interests (often "victims") must be "discovered" in the Constitution if they are not otherwise obvious. Once rights have been separated from the explicit meaning of the written word, they become a matter of opinion. We are then left to the mercy of nine fallible individuals. While they would insist their motives are pure, simply to understand and interpret the Constitution, I would suggest, from my position as a Psychoanalyst and investigator of the human psyche, that the best of us do not know more than a fraction of our conscious motives, let alone our unconscious imperatives. At least in our legislatures, we deal with the clash of competing desires. We have always relied on the Supreme Court to help modulate our passions, but who or what will modulate their passions if not the written words?

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