Author Topic: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch  (Read 1115 times)

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #30 on: 22:26 15-May-2017 »
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Whenever an unelected body..... with a life term creates laws, it will cause long term fractures between winners and losers and diminish faith in a govt based on "representation."

The U.S. Constitution does not come with an instruction manual as to how it should be interpreted, so it invites interpretation. 

For example:

- Fourteenth Amendment -

"nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law"

Where in the Constitution does it say exactly what process is "due process"?  A hearing?  An appeal?  An administrative meeting?  A letter from the town mayor?  Do you have a right to call witnesses?  Demand documents?  Cross examine?  Where does it say this in the text of the Constitution? 

- Eighth Amendment -

"In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial."

What speed is speedy?  Where does it say this in the text of the Constitution? 

- Privileges and Immunities Clause -

"No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States"


You would think the privileges and immunities would be listed in the document, right?  They aren't.

- First Amendment -

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"


Can you ban Rastafarians from smoking weed (a religious practice) or Native Americans from smoking peyote (part of their religious practice).  Voodoo magic?  Scientology?  Human sacrifice (Mayan Indians)?   How about Jihad by a U.S. Citizen?  (I promise the word "Jihad" is not in the Constitution, but neither is "Catholicism" or "Communion" -- the Framers said absolutely nothing about Bar Mitzvahs or Voodoo magic.)

You can go through the entire document and ask these types of questions.

It's called a "living Constitution" because it is one that is supposed to evolve, change over time, and adapt to new circumstances, without being formally amended.  However, it also has a process for being formally amended.   So when is it to be 'interpreted' and when is it to be amended?   The Constitution does not say. 
« Last Edit: 22:52 15-May-2017 by Reggie »

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #31 on: 23:25 15-May-2017 »
Reggie is spot-on about this.

Chief Justice Roberts' metaphor of an umpire simply "calling balls and strikes" is fiction, as applied to some of the big questions that come before the Court.

Even a Supreme Court determined to be as far as possible from "activist," cannot avoid many important questions of interpretation where there is no definite black-or-white rule.  In practice, the interpretations made by the Court will be based on many ingredients, including the world view, prejudices (whether conscious or otherwise), life experience, political philosophy and moral code of a Justice voting on a case or writing an opinion.

We know (based on analysis of publications) that Court rulings in agreement with a commentators politics are labeled good jurisprudence, and rulings the commentator disagrees with are "judicial activism" or "legislating from the bench."  Similar analyses show that conservative justices are pretty much as creative as liberal justices, despite claims from Justices like Scalia to be strict and literally follow the word of the law.

In many (probably most) cases where people complain about "judges making law," the underlying problem is that Congress has failed to enact or amend legislation that would resolve the controversy.  Congress is weighed down with cowards who, by their failure to take action, leave the Supreme Court as the only place to go for an answer.

A logical remedy for judges making laws, is for Congress to make laws.  Because American voters keep electing Congress-critters who prefer not to act, we can say that the public endorses the present state of affairs.
« Last Edit: 11:23 16-May-2017 by sosednik »

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #32 on: 00:55 16-May-2017 »
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A logical remedy for judges making laws, is for Congress to make laws. 

I disagree with this sentence in so far as it suggests a remedy for the vague clauses in the Constitution. 

There is a separation of powers in Articles 1-3 of the Constitution: Congress can never (* see exception) fill the void of mysterious clauses in the Constitution -- that's the Court's unique responsibility. 

The Supreme Court can rule a law to be unconstitutional and say what the Constitution means; the Congress, with the States, can amend the Constitution. (* Here is the exception to when Congress can add 'interpretation' to the Constitution -- through the strict process of amendment.)

The way you wrote it, might be understood that Congress can say here is a new statute:

"The Constitution is silent on what <<establishment of religion>> means, so we, the Congress, say it means XYZ." 

That wouldn't be allowed because it would violate the separation of powers -- it's the sole province of the Court to say what <<establishment of religion>> means.  Congress can only add content to the Constitution through the strict amendment process, never by statute, and the interpretation would again be left up to the Court.

The amendment process is by design inefficient and almost impossible so no one branch can usurp enough power to become dominant or fill the shoes of the other.  So it's not something Congress can easily do, even if it wanted to.

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Chief Justice Roberts' metaphor of an umpire simply "calling balls and strikes" is fiction

Yes, Roberts' statement is a lie.  It can rarely (almost never) be done.   

And you would think that where the Constitution says "Congress shall make no law" the balls-&-strikes judges would say, 'the Constitition says "NO LAW," ' but they don't take that view.  They allow Congress (and the states) to make laws against smoking peyote or human sacrifice though it can be considered a religious practice among some people.  Remember, the text explicitly says "NO LAW."

Stated differently:  The Constitution says "Congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise (of religion)."  But even though the Constutition is clear in this rare instance and says "NO LAW" the 'balls and strikes judges  say, 'Okay Congress, you can make some laws prohibiting certain free exercise of religion.'  (Peyote, Human Sacrifice, a preacher with a bull horn in the middle of the night, Voodoo magic -- you get the idea.)

1- You can take NO COOKIES.
or
2- You can take SOME COOKIES.

The Constitution says #1 explicitly but they read it as #2.

Test it out:  Next time you're on a flight from NY to Las Vegas start reading scary passages from the Bible in a loud voice; you will see an emergency landing, Federal Marshals waiting for you, and nobody on the Supreme Court willing to save you from prosecution.



"And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee."

[Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking, please fasten your safety belts, we will be making an emergency landing at the Federal Correctional Center.]
« Last Edit: 01:37 16-May-2017 by Reggie »

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #33 on: 11:17 16-May-2017 »
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"When surrounded by the dark void of the wilfully blind, it does not excuse those that are a spark of light their duty to shine" - Pompey Nik

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Donald John Trump: Deathwatch
« Reply #34 on: 22:15 25-May-2017 »
In an earlier post, tnic referred to Trump's "endless energy levels".  There have been multiple press reports, and I believe statements by Trump himself, that he gets by with little sleep.

Yesterday, the Journal of the American Heart Association published a report on the results of a study that observed the health of 1344 middle-aged adults over a period of more than 16 years.

Over the study period, people who had metabolic syndrome and slept less than 6 hours per night died from heart disease or stroke at twice the rate of those without metabolic syndrome.

We don't know whether Trump has metabolic syndrome, but we do know that he is near or above the BMI threshold for obesity, does little vigorous exercise, and reportedly eats a high-fat diet.  Accordingly, he is an excellent candidate for metabolic syndrome.

It's also interesting to note, that he reportedly has frequent outbursts of anger in response to hearing (often on his TV) people making comments about him he doesn't like.  In the two-hour period after such an outburst, the risk of heart attack increases by 400% and the risk of stroke increases 200%.

Trump is hearing such comments on his TV quite often now.

Sad!
_______________________________________

In an earlier post, Danno wrote about Associate Justice Ginsburg, "she may make it to 2024 but I wouldn't bet on it."

That was a little over two weeks ago.  On the basis of what we know today:

1.  How likely is Trump to serve out his four-year term?

2.  If he finished the term and stood for re-election, how likely would he be to win?

3.  If Trump were to leave office in disgrace, how likely would Pence be to win in 2020?

Really, the absolute best shot for Republicans would be for Trump to die in office.  Then, Pence could run in 2020 on his own charms, or he could gracefully step aside for the next Great White Hope.

I suggest that if Ruth can hang in there four years more, she has quite a good chance to peacefully retire, knowing that a Democrat will nominate her successor.

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #35 on: 03:32 26-May-2017 »
There was some recent news report that Trump refuses to exercise as he believes exercise taps a finite reserve of energy that has to last his whole lifetime. 
Pence is too boring to be elected President, even by Republicans.  He would lose the Primary.  His best bet is to keep copies of WP and NYT strewn about where Trump will see them.
    Trump can only be re-elected if Hillary gets the Democratic nomination again.  Recent polling suggests he can still beat her if the election were held now.  And Hillary acts like she wants another go.  The Clinton machine can still make anyone they choose, the Party's nominee.

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #36 on: 05:24 26-May-2017 »
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There was some recent news report that Trump refuses to exercise as he believes exercise taps a finite reserve of energy that has to last his whole lifetime. 
Pence is too boring to be elected President, even by Republicans.  He would lose the Primary.  His best bet is to keep copies of WP and NYT strewn about where Trump will see them.
    Trump can only be re-elected if Hillary gets the Democratic nomination again.  Recent polling suggests he can still beat her if the election were held now.  And Hillary acts like she wants another go.  The Clinton machine can still make anyone they choose, the Party's nominee.

Yeah, the polls are so accurate.  :D
The next wave of fascism will come disguised as anti-fascism.

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #37 on: 11:01 26-May-2017 »
@Tnic:

"The polls" -- at least, the major ones -- predicted the national popular vote in the 2016 US presidential election, to within their stated margin of error.  They weren't wrong.

State polls had much larger errors due to several causes, and the electoral college predictions were necessarily based on polling in states where the margins between candidates were rather small.

Like most tools, public polling can be very useful.  Like most tools, public polling used without understanding strengths and limitations is likely to lead to poor results.

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Re: Donald John Trump: Deathwatch
« Reply #38 on: 08:57 27-May-2017 »
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_______________________________________

In an earlier post, Danno wrote about Associate Justice Ginsburg, "she may make it to 2024 but I wouldn't bet on it."

That was a little over two weeks ago.  On the basis of what we know today:

1.  How likely is Trump to serve out his four-year term?

2.  If he finished the term and stood for re-election, how likely would he be to win?

3.  If Trump were to leave office in disgrace, how likely would Pence be to win in 2020?

Really, the absolute best shot for Republicans would be for Trump to die in office.  Then, Pence could run in 2020 on his own charms, or he could gracefully step aside for the next Great White Hope.

I suggest that if Ruth can hang in there four years more, she has quite a good chance to peacefully retire, knowing that a Democrat will nominate her successor.

Earlier you speculated about Trumps health. I can see you are concerned, I would instead direct your concern to the thousand even millions of people who are seriously traumatized over trump. A number of stories have ran about the huge surge in the suicide call centers as well as the mental health professionals.

We will never know the lives cut short, on the pathway to M.A.G.A.

whatever the number should be I think you will agree, it will be worth it. :)
Montaigne's axiom: "Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know."

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Re: Donald John Trump: Deathwatch
« Reply #39 on: 22:24 27-May-2017 »
[I would instead direct your concern to the thousand even millions of people who are seriously traumatized over trump. A number of stories have ran about the huge surge in the suicide call centers as well as the mental health professionals.

We will never know the lives cut short, on the pathway to M.A.G.A.

...........

Attention whores that were bound to explode anyway, now they have an excuse and that last thing they can do is blame their shit on someone else...the President no less(who is the current flavor of the month), that always makes news and a 15 minute guaranteed burn out. Looks like the Liberals will be short 'thousands even millions' votes in 4 years, unless the dead can vote. again.
Peace is the failure of the military to convince the government that it can and should kick its enemies ass.

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Re: Donald John Trump: Deathwatch
« Reply #40 on: 22:54 27-May-2017 »
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attention whores that were bound to explode anyway

We need a thread about exploding whores.  Usual culprit is mixing burritos and dairy products.

Boom!   :D



My God, what is this thread about?   We should consolidate all of Expatua here.   :D
« Last Edit: 23:08 27-May-2017 by Reggie »

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #41 on: 23:31 27-May-2017 »
"Looks like the Liberals will be short 'thousands even millions' votes in 4 years, unless the dead can vote. again."

It is a matter of fact -- as distinct from sarcastic snark -- that the lion's share of Trump's electoral margin came from white people age 50 and over.

Estimating from mortality tables, three million or more of those older white American voters will have died by the 2020 election.  I remember a network evening news anchor (himself quite gray) joking a few years ago (about the big decline in viewership of network news), that part of his program's Nielsen score comes from elderly viewers who died in their chairs with their TV tuned to his network.  The GOP has a similar problem.

To remind any understandably confused readers of this thread, about the topic:

If Ruth Bader Ginsburg can remain on the court through 2019, the odds are in her favor that a Democrat will nominate her successor.  If the Senate were to lose its majority next year, then Democrats could block any Republican-nominated successor until 2020.

I'm not handicapping the Senate -- probably, Republicans will retain their majority.  But it's hardly guaranteed.  When a president has low approval ratings, mid-term elections can be punishing for that president's party.  In the event of a Senate upset, it would be enough for Ginsburg to "hang in there" through the end of this year.

She has a reasonable prospect of lasting long enough, to ensure that her seat on the court will not be taken by a person likely to take opposite views to hers.

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #42 on: 01:54 28-May-2017 »
2016 was the first election in which Millenial voters outnumbered Boomers.  Some  Millenial votes Hillary counted on, banked on, went to Trump and more just opted out in protest or lack of motivation.  So, there is a decent case to be made that Millenials decided the election.  Bernie Bros didn't all turn out.   1% voted for Jill Stein, the Green candidate who attended the RT dinner with Flynn.   Trump got a good chunk of Hispanic votes, and Younger Blacks didn't vote. 
Boomers remain powerful, politically, because Millenials that Democrats expected to rally for Hillary, instead are like herding cats. 

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #43 on: 07:51 28-May-2017 »
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"Looks like the Liberals will be short 'thousands even millions' votes in 4 years, unless the dead can vote. again."

It is a matter of fact -- as distinct from sarcastic snark -- that the lion's share of Trump's electoral margin came from white people age 50 and over.

Estimating from mortality tables, three million or more of those older white American voters will have died by the 2020 election.  I remember a network evening news anchor (himself quite gray) joking a few years ago (about the big decline in viewership of network news), that part of his program's Nielsen score comes from elderly viewers who died in their chairs with their TV tuned to his network.  The GOP has a similar problem.

To remind any understandably confused readers of this thread, about the topic:

If Ruth Bader Ginsburg can remain on the court through 2019, the odds are in her favor that a Democrat will nominate her successor.  If the Senate were to lose its majority next year, then Democrats could block any Republican-nominated successor until 2020.

I'm not handicapping the Senate -- probably, Republicans will retain their majority.  But it's hardly guaranteed.  When a president has low approval ratings, mid-term elections can be punishing for that president's party.  In the event of a Senate upset, it would be enough for Ginsburg to "hang in there" through the end of this year.

She has a reasonable prospect of lasting long enough, to ensure that her seat on the court will not be taken by a person likely to take opposite views to hers.

Reddington can be of help?
Peace is the failure of the military to convince the government that it can and should kick its enemies ass.

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Re: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Deathwatch
« Reply #44 on: 23:51 28-May-2017 »

It would be a mistake to say the US Supreme Court is irrelevant, but it's not as relevant as you might think, at least not as much in this era.

The Court grants review for 1% or less of petitions.  So what does that mean for your ability to get justice before a tribunal of last resort on an individual level?  Not much.  That's 1% of cases that have spent a lifetime spinning through the lower courts.  Not every case is like that, but most.   

The Court does tackle larger questions: Segregation, Abortion, Voting (Bush v Gore), Presidential powers (US v Nixon), to name a few.

But if the lower courts decide to ignore the Supreme Court, which they often do through procedural rulings, your chances of obtaining review are next to none.

Can the Court change the country in significant ways?  Yes.  But don't count on it.  America won't look any different the next day or ten years later if Ginsburg or Breyer, or whomever, retires from the Court.   

It's such an immense topic; in ways that are not evident.  Only a handful of lawyers and law professors, and at least half of the judiciary understand the US Supreme Court.  You'll have to take it on faith; the Court doesn't operate the way you read in the newspapers, and 9 out of 10 lawyers won't be able to explain it to you.

This thread is a rabbit hole.  It doesn't mean the subject shouldn't be studied, but the place to start is by using a book like this as an index and then reading through all of the cases cited. 

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« Last Edit: 22:07 29-May-2017 by Reggie »