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Bork is Back
June 7, 2012 9:22 PM   Subscribe

Bork is Back. He is currently writing a book titled "1973." Now he will devote his time to Romney'sJustice Advisory Committee.” The move is a clear signal as to who Romney will nominate to the Supreme Court if he is elected. This will be a key issue in the 2012 elections. Any or all of the four current Justices up for retirement: Ginsburg, 79: Scalia, 76; Kennedy, 75; Breyer 73, would swing the court depending on who is elected.
posted by snaparapans (54 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
I wish Ginzburg would retire NOW! She's going to wait until Romney gets elected and fuck everything up.
posted by mrhappy at 11:38 PM on June 7, 2012 [5 favorites]


Bork is such a bozo. I remember the hearings when he was nominated for the Supreme Court. He came across as this strict academic constitutionalist. But during the hearings it became apparent to everyone watching that he was nothing but a weasel who would say anything his masters told him to say, but just word it in a way that this was obviously what the constitution intended and all of you are idiots for not listening to me, since I am obviously smarter than any of you.

The more he talked the more people disliked him (except, of course, for his fellow weasels).
posted by eye of newt at 11:50 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


Any or all of the four current Justices up for retirement: Ginzburg, 79: Scalia, 76; Kennedy, 75; Breyer 73

Bork is 85.
posted by Pendragon at 12:15 AM on June 8, 2012 [7 favorites]


Ok, I read the "clear signal" link:

By adding Robert Bork to his team, Romney is making clear to conservatives and liberals alike that Bork will be advising him on things like Supreme Court justices and other federal judges. It may not be enough to mollify the right but it should be plenty to worry the left.
posted by Pendragon at 12:19 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was really hoping this would be a Swedish Chef post.
posted by Grimp0teuthis at 12:27 AM on June 8, 2012 [20 favorites]


Any or all of the four current Justices up for retirement: Ginzburg

*Ginsburg
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 12:57 AM on June 8, 2012 [2 favorites]


How Originalism, or specifically Scalia's "Originalism," is pure and unadulterated horseshit.
posted by bardic at 1:10 AM on June 8, 2012 [4 favorites]


Let me guess. Once more they will trot out the reliable standard, "This will likely be the most important presidential election of your lifetime, because the newly elected president's appointments to the Supreme Court will have particularly far reaching consequences. Much more so than usual! It's really serious this time!"

I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.
posted by BigSky at 1:20 AM on June 8, 2012 [10 favorites]


It kind of has been among the most important issue every time. Bush getting elected gave us some of the worst shitheels we have now. Obama getting elected got us a pair of decent justices. Obama getting reelected likely protects Ginsberg's seat and God willing we get somebody less awful than scalia in his seat. So, yeah, this is always important.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:38 AM on June 8, 2012 [16 favorites]


It's an... interesting choice.
posted by hippybear at 3:52 AM on June 8, 2012


America has been borked for years.
posted by Faint of Butt at 3:55 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


Um, how can you swing something that's already been swung?
posted by tommasz at 4:58 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


'Justice Advisory Committee'? I can't decide if that sounds more Orwellian or more supervillain-ish.
posted by box at 5:04 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.

It's certainly a welcome contrast from, "both sides are the same; the outcome doesn't matter." Turns out that (a) they're not the same, and (b) the practical effect on the lives of individuals is more important than your commitment to voting as an act of philosophical expression and social class signaling.
posted by deanc at 5:05 AM on June 8, 2012 [23 favorites]


If the democrats were serious about winning, they would get some of those supreme court justices declared to be enemy combatants.
posted by blue_beetle at 5:17 AM on June 8, 2012 [2 favorites]


As governor, Mitt Romney backtracked on promised reforms in appointing judges
Mitt Romney marched into the Massachusetts State House in 2003 as a self-declared reformer, pledging to fix a judicial nominating system he decried as riddled with patronage and backroom deals.

Quoting John Adams, the new governor vowed to appoint judges purely on merit, put partisanship aside and restrict political contributions by those applying for the bench. “The citizens of Massachusetts deserve to have a squeaky-clean process that has no room for politics and favors,” Romney said as he announced changes to judicial selection that were hailed as a national model.

Three years later, Romney changed course. He effectively took over the independent judicial-screening commission he had unveiled with such fanfare. And as he geared up to run for president in 2008, he dismissed members of the commission who were resisting his choices for judgeships, according to documents and interviews.
posted by peeedro at 5:20 AM on June 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


The imminence of a Scalia-free court. That alone is cause for celebration.
posted by runningdogofcapitalism at 5:31 AM on June 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


The imminence of a Scalia-free court

Better the Scalia you know, though.
posted by drezdn at 5:35 AM on June 8, 2012 [5 favorites]


I wish Ginzburg would retire NOW! She's going to wait until Romney gets elected and fuck everything up.
Her replacement will still need to get through the senate. It would have been better if she'd retired in 2009-10 when the dems still controlled the senate.

Anyway, it's not really that big of a question as to whether or Romney would appoint conservative judges.
posted by delmoi at 5:49 AM on June 8, 2012


I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.

Given that after one of those the United States got into two (2) wars, each of which lasted longer than WWII and are still costing us 100+ billion dollars a year and after another we kicked off the biggest economic collapse since the great depression, are you arguing that they weren't?

If you're going to get mad, get mad at the people who keep upping the ante.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 6:08 AM on June 8, 2012 [6 favorites]


It's certainly a welcome contrast from, "both sides are the same; the outcome doesn't matter." Turns out that (a) they're not the same, and (b) the practical effect on the lives of individuals is more important than your commitment to voting as an act of philosophical expression and social class signaling.

Even for MetaFilter, this is remarkably self-righteous and smug. Any excuse to preach will do.

Social class signaling, indeed.

I guess there would be no point in using that tired line election cycle after election cycle, if it didn't get you nodding your head and wringing your hands.
posted by BigSky at 6:08 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


Breyer is "up for retirement"? Is there any reason for this aside from his age? 73 isn't that old when it comes to Supreme Court justices.
posted by John Cohen at 6:11 AM on June 8, 2012


I was really hoping this would be a Swedish Chef post.

I was really hoping Bjork had reunited the Sugarcubes.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:11 AM on June 8, 2012 [6 favorites]


Romney's going to win, isn't he? The left are tired and disorganized. The stupids are strong, loud, everywhere.
posted by fleacircus at 6:18 AM on June 8, 2012


I'm terrified of this. If Romney is elected, the right over MY OWN BODY will be under more attack then it is currently. Please, please consider carefully on choosing Obama. He is on the side of women.
posted by agregoli at 6:19 AM on June 8, 2012


Let me guess. Once more they will trot out the reliable standard, "This will likely be the most important presidential election of your lifetime, because the newly elected president's appointments to the Supreme Court will have particularly far reaching consequences. Much more so than usual! It's really serious this time!"

I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.


The current Supreme Court is the most conservative Supreme Court of the modern era, more conservative than any court since 1937, the year of FDR's court-packing controversy and "the switch in time that saved nine. In addition, the conservative composition of the court in 2000 ensured that Al Gore got an election stolen right from under him. If Romney replaces Ginsburg, Breyer, or even Kennedy, you can probably also kiss Roe v. Wade goodbye, because Romney indicated he wants that overturned.

In addition, when the 2000 election rolled around, I was in Berkeley and the reasoning I got from some Nader voters was that Bush's selections for courts in Texas were relatively moderate, so I shouldn't worry too much about Bush going crazy right wing with his Supreme Court appointments. Instead, I got John Roberts and Samuel Alito. Sorry, dude, but I've seen that movie before.
posted by jonp72 at 6:37 AM on June 8, 2012 [8 favorites]


Instead, I got John Roberts and Samuel Alito. Sorry, dude, but I've seen that movie before.

If Bush hadn't stolen the election in 2000 it is very unlikely we'd have the Citizens United clusterfuck we have now.
posted by Aizkolari at 6:40 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


Even for MetaFilter, this is remarkably self-righteous and smug.

I have my moments. But I am also right in this case. And, "this election won't make much a difference, that's why I'm voting for my tax cuts, and all you ''activists' who 'care' about who 'wins' are losers," is an act of both dishonest disingenuousness and severe, severe moral vacuousness. Screeching that it's "smug" and "self-righteous" to point out that real people's lives and livelihoods are affected by your actual votes and the outcomes of the elections (and selections of supreme court justices) bespeaks a sport of hyper-defensiveness that only comes from someone who knows what he's doing is wrong but doesn't want to be held personally accountable for his behavior and beliefs. The people preaching "moral and personal responsibility" are the ones who least want to face up to their responsibility for the consequences of their votes and beliefs in their desperation for social validation.
posted by deanc at 6:40 AM on June 8, 2012 [11 favorites]


This is the only issue in the 2012 election for me. Robamney is the same on most major issues, both are wholly owned by Wall Street and will do nothing to help the Main Street economy, both will continue our various illegal wars in Muslim states (although Robama may actually stick to the alleged 2014 Afghan withdraw date, while Obamney would probably extend that through his first term) and both are committed to ruthless austerity budgets through a "Grand Bargain" to rollback and/or eliminate most or all of the safety net programs.

The one and only area where there is a clearly demonstrated difference in real world results is who the two corporate shills will appoint to the Court. Obama has made 1 very good left leaning appointment, Sotomayor, and one decent leftish appointment, Kagan. If he gets another shot, he's highly likely to make a decent selection to at the very least maintain the current détente, and possible swing the court away from it's decent into full blown wingnut radio land. Romney will nominate a teabangelical like Ken Cucinelli, paving the path for a 5 member rightwing legal autocracy, frothing at the mouth to deliver on every Birch Society fantasy ever dreamed up in the last 50 years.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:45 AM on June 8, 2012 [6 favorites]


Given that after one of those the United States got into two (2) wars, each of which lasted longer than WWII and are still costing us 100+ billion dollars a year and after another we kicked off the biggest economic collapse since the great depression, are you arguing that they weren't?

Help me out here. What decisions of the Supreme Court affected those events?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:49 AM on June 8, 2012


Help me out here. What decisions of the Supreme Court affected those events?

The one that installed the liars who made them?
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:51 AM on June 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


Which was not a decision made by appointees of either of those elections. Kind of circular innit?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:04 AM on June 8, 2012


Which was not a decision made by appointees of either of those elections. Kind of circular innit?

I think people are not talking about what you think they are talking about.
posted by fleacircus at 7:25 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


For a while there I was thinking that Ginsburg would retire this spring so Obama could nominate an eminently sensible replacement over the protests of the right wingers, thereby alienating swing voters from the GOP. That would be good jujitsu, but time is getting short.
posted by chrismc at 7:28 AM on June 8, 2012


Nader voters

DRINK!

Romney's going to win, isn't he?

No.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 7:48 AM on June 8, 2012


I think people are not talking about what you think they are talking about.

I know what they are talking about. It's not what I was talking about, or what the original comment I was replying to was talking about. Here:
I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.

Given that after one of those
[elections] the United States got into two (2) wars, each of which lasted longer than WWII and are still costing us 100+ billion dollars a year and after another we kicked off the biggest economic collapse since the great depression, are you arguing that they weren't?
The SCOTUS justices appointed following those elections did not, AFAIK, join in any decisions about the wars or the financial collapse. I could be wrong, which is why I asked for help.
Help me out here. What decisions of the Supreme Court affected those events?

The one
[SCOTUS decision] that installed the liars who made them?
That decision predates the elections in question.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:50 AM on June 8, 2012


Bork is back, ha. He never went away. But, "Robert Bork continues to do what he's done for years," isn't a snappy headline, I guess.
posted by ThisIsNotMe at 7:50 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


That decision predates the elections in question.

But it implies the importance of the people on the Court, no?
posted by inigo2 at 8:19 AM on June 8, 2012


Which was not in question.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:21 AM on June 8, 2012


drezdn: "The imminence of a Scalia-free court

Better the Scalia you know, though.
"

I'lll take my chances. Roll the wheel, please.
posted by IAmBroom at 8:23 AM on June 8, 2012 [2 favorites]


BigSky: "Even for MetaFilter, this is remarkably self-righteous and smug. Any excuse to preach will do.

Social class signaling, indeed.
"
Um, no. Not self-righteous; not remarkably smug (smug, sure), and not preachy. And not a social class signal.

He's rebutting the constant, tired cliche, often heard here and elsewhere, that the Republicans and the Democrats are simply tigers of different stripes, controlled by their corporate masters, and so the electorate's "choice" is naught but a comforting illusion.
posted by IAmBroom at 8:26 AM on June 8, 2012 [2 favorites]



I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections..

We are still reeling from all the appointments that dubya made, and that is not just SC Judges but, all the judges, and State attorneys, and hundreds and hundreds of appointees who have not been replaced by Obama and his administration.

Bork would not only be advising on SC, but all nominations relating to Justice, including State Attorneys, and Federal Judges. And you know that that if Romney were elected, every current Obama appointee would be immediately terminated, unlike the conciliatory approach to firing appointees that Obama took. Granted, many of these GOPers cleverly switched to non terminable civil service jobs when Obama came into office.

Presidents have the power to affect generations, long after they leave office.

GW Bush, did more to affect the innards of american gov than any other president in my lifetime. Remember Monica Goodling? The Powell memo, or Powell Manifesto, as it is lovingly called, is worth a read. Written by Lewis F. Powell in 1971, it has become the blueprint for the dream of Permanent GOP majority. granted these GOPers are clever; many switched to non terminable civil service jobs when Obama came into office, a practice called burrowing in.

Yeah, one of the good reasons to vote.. depressing as to the choices, but clearly the D's offer something a bit better.
posted by snaparapans at 9:05 AM on June 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


It's not what I was talking about, or what the original comment I was replying to was talking about.

I think Kid Charlemagne was riffing off BigSky's implied general point, regardless of the SC nominations.

I think if we accept that the recent elections have been pretty momentous, and that in fact SC nominations are pretty important too, then we can set aside what BigSky said. We don't have to show that the primary source of momentousness has flowed from SC nominations, restricting our domain further to only those SC nominations that follow from specifically the last 5 elections. No one is after that bizarrely rigorous disproof of some very casual comment. Or if they are, please kill me.
posted by fleacircus at 9:18 AM on June 8, 2012


[Fixed Ginsburg typo.]
posted by taz at 10:26 AM on June 8, 2012


Also, Romney advisor for foreign policy? John "Bomb Iran" Bolton.
posted by Joey Michaels at 10:47 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have my moments. But I am also right in this case. And, "this election won't make much a difference, that's why I'm voting for my tax cuts, and all you ''activists' who 'care' about who 'wins' are losers," is an act of both dishonest disingenuousness and severe, severe moral vacuousness. Screeching that it's "smug" and "self-righteous" to point out that real people's lives and livelihoods are affected by your actual votes and the outcomes of the elections (and selections of supreme court justices) bespeaks a sport of hyper-defensiveness that only comes from someone who knows what he's doing is wrong but doesn't want to be held personally accountable for his behavior and beliefs. The people preaching "moral and personal responsibility" are the ones who least want to face up to their responsibility for the consequences of their votes and beliefs in their desperation for social validation.

You make me smile. This is good stuff. I particularly like you feeling the need to point out "that real people's lives and livelihoods are affected by your actual votes".

Pro tip: If you're going to be this condescending, try mixing in some intentional humor.

Tax cuts.

WTF?

-----

He's rebutting the constant, tired cliche, often heard here and elsewhere, that the Republicans and the Democrats are simply tigers of different stripes, controlled by their corporate masters, and so the electorate's "choice" is naught but a comforting illusion.

Uh-huh, but what I was talking about, was an overused campaign line, breathlessly repeated each presidential election to instill a sense of urgency in the electorate of the party that happens to be pushing the line that time around. Never mind that though, there's an opportunity to depict his votes as resulting from his keen perception and deep compassion, while simultaneously portraying my voting preferences, which went unaddressed in my original comment, as mere social class signaling.

If that's not smug and self-righteous, then I don't know the meaning of the words. Except I'm pretty sure that I do.
posted by BigSky at 10:52 AM on June 8, 2012


I won't vote for Romney and I wouldn't disagree that the U.S. deserves him.
posted by wrapper at 12:31 PM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've heard that "most important presidential election EVER" bit for five straight elections.

Well... 2004 did actually turn out to be the most important presidential election in living memory, as far as Supreme Court nominations go. Thanks to the '04-'08 appointments, money is speech (but high school students don't have free speech), cops can barge in without announcing a warrant, corporations can force you to sign away your right to sue them, voter suppression via required-ID laws is A-OK, and seeing Roberts on the bench gives most of us palpable triggers to our own imposter syndrome.
posted by Mayor West at 1:29 PM on June 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


BigSky

Smile away. There's no humor here. You're just wrong on this point, no matter how much you try to dodge it.

Even if it is an oft-use rallying cry, it actually is true. Nominating a Supreme Court Justice is one of the greatest powers a President has, and "...real people's lives and livelihoods are affected by your actual votes"."

Never mind that though, there's an opportunity to depict his votes as resulting from his keen perception and deep compassion,


I'm not sure who you're referring to. If you mean any of the candidates, no one has said that. Many have said that they find all of the candidates, and Obama, terrible on many counts. They just still see the massive importance their Supreme Court nominees have.

If you were referring to the poster, then in the sense that the poster is considering the real-world consequences of their vote in terms of possible Supreme Court nominations and the effect those nominations could have on people, this is a true depiction.

which went unaddressed in my original comment,

Not really. You haven't explicitly said it, but your comment carries the easily-read implied meaning of "both parties are the same", even if one didn't know of your libertarian leanings from your past postings.

The point still stands: Supreme Court nominations are an important consideration when voting, and this is true every election. Patting yourself on the back for being philosophically pure and right is nice, but real lives are affected by that decision.
posted by Sangermaine at 2:39 PM on June 8, 2012


Once more they will trot out the reliable standard, "This will likely be the most important presidential election of your lifetime

Good thing you're above overstatement and hyperbole like that.

By the way -- I didn't actually see a phrase I felt read like that in any of the linked material. I'm sure that it's just because I missed it. Perhaps a hawk-eyed observer of politics like yourself could point it out to me?

the newly elected president's appointments to the Supreme Court will have particularly far reaching consequences.

And boy howdy, it's clearly not true that court choices have far-reaching consequences -- like those in the know will tell you, the judges chosen over the last two decades have clearly had little impact on important matters of jurisprudence.
posted by namespan at 8:18 PM on June 8, 2012


He's rebutting the constant, tired cliché, often heard here and elsewhere, that the Republicans and the Democrats are simply tigers of different stripes, controlled by their corporate masters, and so the electorate's "choice" is naught but a comforting illusion...

...which "constant, tired cliché" happens to be true on such a wide range of issues it takes a pointed reminder to wake folks up to the fact that supreme court nominees are actually a sharp exception to the cliché.
posted by mediareport at 4:42 PM on June 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


A Mitt Romney Presidency Could Mean a Hostile Takeover of the Federal Courts
posted by homunculus at 12:03 PM on June 12, 2012


Despite odds, Obama nominates two for key U.S. appeals court

O'Connor and Her Clerk
posted by homunculus at 12:06 PM on June 12, 2012


Scalia’s scary thinking: The Supreme Court justice actually believes the things he says and writes, even though they make no sense
posted by homunculus at 11:21 AM on June 24, 2012


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