Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘Elena Kagan’

History Looks Forward: SCOTUS Chief Justice John G. Roberts Appointment No Accident

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, January 15, 2015

It wasn’t by accident that George W. Bush nominated John Roberts as SCOTUS Chief Justice, because he’s the SECOND YOUNGEST of ALL the Justices (Elena Kagan b.4/28/1960 is younger than John Roberts b.1/27/1955 by 5 years, 3 months, 3 days), and his influence could be felt for perhaps 40+ years. At his appointment, John G. Roberts was aged 48 years, only 4 years older than the First Chief Justice, John Jay (served 1789-1795), who was aged 44 years when he took the oath of office.

FYI, the youngest Associate Justice was Joseph Story (served 1811-1845), who was aged 32 years when he took the oath of office.

The longest serving Associate Justice was William O. Douglas who served 36 years, 7 months, and 8 days from 1939 to 1975.

The longest serving Chief Justice was Chief Justice John Marshall who served 34 years, 5 months and 11 days from 1801 to 1835.

The average number of years that Justices have served is 16.

However… the average tenure of a Supreme Court Justice from 1789 through 1970 was 14.9 years.

For those Justices who have Read the rest of this entry »

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Criticizing the President: This one’s on Obama

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 20, 2013

This OpEd is probably some of the best, and most genuinely warranted criticism of President Obama which I’ve yet read.

As late former president Theodore Roosevelt wrote:
“The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.* Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.”

-Theodore Roosevelt’s OpEd Column entitled “Sedition, A Free Press and Personal Rule” published May 7, 1918 in the Kansas City Star

*Roosevelt’s sharp criticism of President Wilson‘s leadership during World War I led the Post Office to warn that the Star that such views might cost the paper its second-class mailing privileges.

Obama A Big Hypocrite? Ask Legal Schnauzer, Roger Shuler

By (about the author)     Permalink
Life Arts 5/18/2013 at 22:24:54

My guest today is Legal Schnauzer, Roger Shuler. Welcome back to OpEdNews, Roger. 

JB: Your recent piece The President Paints Himself Into An Ethical Corner By Voicing Outrage Over Evolving Scandal At The IRS  is pretty scathing. What’s got you so upset?

RS: In early January 2009, just a few days before he took office, President-Elect Obama said he intended to “look forward, as opposed to looking backwards” on apparent crimes under the Bush administration. As president, Obama seems to have followed through on that pledge because his Justice Department has failed to review political prosecutions such as the one involving former Governor Don Siegelman in Alabama, where I live.

Political prosecutions, of course, were just of one of many improper acts on the justice front during the Bush years–torture, warrantless wiretapping, firings of U.S. attorneys were among the others. In essence, Obama issued a decree that no one would be held accountable for those acts.

Obama’s “look forward” statement made no sense at the time, and it makes even less sense now, coming after he expressed outrage the other day over disclosures about the IRS targeting conservative groups for political reasons. Obama said in a news conference that he would not “tolerate” such actions, that wrongdoers must be held “accountable,” and the problem must be “fixed.”

But his inaction toward the DOJ shows that he will tolerate the targeting of political opponents, that he will not hold individuals accountable for such actions, and he will not take steps to fix the problem. Obama was uttering empty words at his press conference about the IRS. Many of us expect that from a Republican chief executive; we should demand better from a Democrat.

JBFor readers unfamiliar with the Siegelman case, Roger, can you give us a brief overview of what happened and why anyone outside of Alabama should care? It didn’t happen under Obama’s watch so how can he be blamed?

RS: Don Siegelman was a Democratic governor in a deep-red state, a state where Karl Rove has a strong power base. Siegelman accepted a campaign donation from a businessman named Richard Scrushy, and then appointed Scrushy to a health-care regulatory board–a board on which Scrushy had served under three previous governors.

The standard for a bribery conviction in the campaign-donation context is that the prosecution must prove an “explicit agreement” in a something-for-something deal (known in legalese as a “quid pro quo.”) No evidence at trial pointed to such an unlawful deal, and the federal judge presiding over the case (a George W. Bush appointee named Mark Fuller) gave incorrect jury instructions that did not include the “explicit agreement” requirement. He allowed the jury to Read the rest of this entry »

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Dope-Sniffing Dogs (and their Law Enforcement owners) get their day in the United States Supreme Court

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The so-called “conservative,” or Republican justices are showing their true colors.

Welcome to their police state.

Drug-Sniffing Dogs Have Their Day in Court as Justices Hear 2 Arguments

By
October 31, 2012

WASHINGTON — In back-to-back arguments about drug-sniffing dogs, the Supreme Court on Wednesday seemed open to limiting their use outside homes but not near cars.

The first argument concerned Franky, a chocolate Labrador retriever who detected the smell of marijuana outside a Florida house. The police obtained a warrant to search the house based on Franky’s signal, and they found a marijuana-growing operation inside.

The court’s four liberal justices all asked questions that were skeptical of allowing dogs to sniff around near homes without probable cause. They were joined by one of the court’s conservatives, Justice Antonin Scalia, who sometimes staked out positions more protective of homeowners’ privacy than the lawyer for the defendant in the case.

The Supreme Court has said the privacy of the home is at the core of what is protected by the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches. Justice Scalia is the author of the majority opinions in both a 5-to-4 decision in 2001 limiting the use of thermal-imaging technology to peer into homes and a unanimous ruling in January, on varying rationales, limiting the use of GPS tracking devices on cars.

Justice Scalia’s opinion in the second case was based on Read the rest of this entry »

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