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Old 07-09-2011, 03:10 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
8,096 posts, read 4,692,243 times
Reputation: 2877

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It feels to me that most Americans seem to just take the judgements of the Supreme Court as if they are handed down from god himself. It seems like, once the Supreme Court rules on something, everyone just throws up their hands like thats just the way things are and theres nothing we can do about it.

And maybe that is the case, but why is that the case? Why is the Supreme Court basically unquestionable in the eyes of the public, while every other piece of government is scrutinized and many times overturned?

Why is that people allow five unelected men, who are handed lifetime appointments on the Supreme Court to dictate their lives for them? Isn't the Supreme Court the closest thing to an oligarchy that we have in this country?

It would be different if the Supreme Court was consistent in any way shape or form, but they just aren't. Look at the voting records, half the time it seems like the decisions are 5-4. Basically, half the court disagrees with the other half. Why don't you people see that the Supreme Court is nothing more than the legislature, it isn't special or unique. They vote their beliefs and ideologies.

As an exercise, I pulled the last 10 court cases dealing with the commerce clause.

LII: Supreme Court Collection

United States v. Morrison - 5-4. First ruling was overruled, and that ruling was subsequently overruled.

Reno v. Condon - 9-0 for. The first and second rulings were both against, which were later somehow overruled unanimously by the Supreme court.

United States v. Lopez - 5-4 against(thus overruling the "gun-free school zones act").

C&A Carbone, Inc. v. Town of Clarkstown, New York - 6-3 for.

Quill Corp. v. North Dakota - 8-1 for.

Garcia v. San Antonio Metropolitan Transit Authority - 5-4 for. The Supreme court overruled both of the previous rulings.

Building Trades & Construction Trades Council of Camden County and Vicinity v. Mayor and Council of the City of Camden - 8-1 for. The first courts decision was overruled.


Kassel v. Consolidated Freightways Corporation of Delaware - 6-3 for(sort of).

Minnesota v. Clover Leaf Creamery Co - 6-1-1 against(Powell dissented/concurred in parts, one abstaining).

Fullilove v. Klutznick - 5-4 for. This was probably the most ridiculous case of them all, it setup the basis that Congress had the power to use its spending powers in an unfair manner in an attempt to right past discrimination.


Of the past 10 commerce clause cases, four(40%) went 5-4... Why exactly? Primarily they are arguing about a judicial theory called the "Dormant commerce clause", which was not part of the constitution but has been basically created by Supreme Court justices to further their policing powers.

Dormant Commerce Clause - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are so many important Supreme court cases go 5-4 its ridiculous. Overturning the gun ban in Chicago, 5-4. The recent Wal-Mart case sex discrimination case, 5-4. Overturning the ban on violent video games in California, 5-4. And almost every Civil Rights case and affirmative-action case has been decided 5-4, all the way back to the Slaughterhouse cases of 1873.

Supreme Court Memo - At Supreme Court, 5-to-4 Rulings Fade, but Why? - NYTimes.com

Quote:
That proved to be an accurate snapshot of a highly polarized term. By the time the court wrapped up its work five weeks later, a third of the cases — the highest proportion in years — had been decided by margins of a single vote.

Why is it that Americans seem to so readily allow five unelected, life-termed men to dictate what is and what isn't permissable, seemingly without question?

This is a good representation of how the court system actually works.

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-june-30-2011/moral-kombat


What are the alternatives? I would personally rather the states deal with their own issues. Then if a bunch of jackasses sitting on the California courts decide to interpret the constitution in some biased and ideological way(and they will), I can move to Arizona or vice versa. I despise this unquestioned judicial dictatorship we have now in Washington, that keeps reinterpreting the constitution to mean whatever they want to mean.

Living document my ass.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:23 PM
 
Location: California
30,513 posts, read 33,327,796 times
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Becasue if the buck doesn't stop somewhere nothing would ever get done. This is our system of government.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Dublin, CA
3,813 posts, read 3,647,240 times
Reputation: 3967
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceece View Post
Becasue if the buck doesn't stop somewhere nothing would ever get done. This is our system of government.
Yeah, something about that pesky Constitution everyone likes to use for their own giles, but no one elses. As long as if favors them, they are happy with it. The moment they don't, hell, lets riot in the streets.

I find it quite funny these men/women on the US Supreme Court have been practicing and enforcing the law for 20, 30, 40+ years. They are some of THE most educated persons in the world, when it comes to constitutional law. But the meomnt they hand down a decision, "someone" doesn't like, they are stupid, incompetent, and have no clue what they are doing.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:27 PM
 
Location: The Heartland
4,457 posts, read 3,699,010 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceece View Post
Becasue if the buck doesn't stop somewhere nothing would ever get done. This is our system of government.
I think the OP would be with you if the SCOTUS were 5/4 liberal. As you say this is our system and things have to end somewhere.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:48 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
8,096 posts, read 4,692,243 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil306 View Post
Yeah, something about that pesky Constitution everyone likes to use for their own giles, but no one elses. As long as if favors them, they are happy with it. The moment they don't, hell, lets riot in the streets.
Exactly, people attempt to use the constitution for their benefit. What does that mean exactly? Isn't the constitution something that is set in stone and unchangeable? Why exactly does it take soo much effort to "interpret" the constitution anyway? Why is it that so many decisions end up 5-4? Why are people always worried about "liberal judges" who are "legislating from the bench?
Quote:
I find it quite funny these men/women on the US Supreme Court have been practicing and enforcing the law for 20, 30, 40+ years. They are some of THE most educated persons in the world, when it comes to constitutional law. But the meomnt they hand down a decision, "someone" doesn't like, they are stupid, incompetent, and have no clue what they are doing.
It is true that some of the most educated people in the world are Supreme Court justices. Is it not also true that some of the most educated people are also presidents and legislators? If being educated was all that actually mattered, then why are there so many 5-4 decisions? Shouldn't "great minds think alike" on these issues? Does the existence of an education suddenly take away an individuals biases?

Not only does the Supreme Court rarely ever agree with themselves, they constantly overrule previous rulings by other parts of the court system. It goes from a single judge on the circuit court, to a three-man appelate court, finally to the nine-man Supreme Court. I could give you a long list of court cases that, the original ruling by the circuit judge was overturned by the apellate court, which later was overturned by the Supreme Court. So why then should it stop there? Maybe a 21-man Super-Supreme Court could overrule our current supreme court, and so on and so forth.



I never said the members of the Supreme Court were stupid, I said they were biased. They aren't biased because they are evil, they are biased because they are human, just like everyone else. And my point is, these flawed humans seem to be getting a free pass to dictate our lives with basically no repercussions. On top of this, these justices are life-termed and unelected. Do you not see the problem?

If the Supreme Court is only applying that "pesky constitution" to prevent democratic tyranny, but then if the Supreme Court constitently votes along ideological lines. Then isn't the Supreme Court just another example of a sort of Democratic tyranny? And an unelected democratic tyranny at that.

Last edited by Redshadowz; 07-09-2011 at 04:02 PM..
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
8,096 posts, read 4,692,243 times
Reputation: 2877
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRUEGRITT View Post
I think the OP would be with you if the SCOTUS were 5/4 liberal. As you say this is our system and things have to end somewhere.

I think you misunderstand my intentions. I don't think many people around here would take me for a liberal.

My intentions are for decentralization, freedom of choice through freedom of movement/voting with your feet. My intentions are for allowing people more control over their lives, to provide them with options. My intentions are to limit the potential for abuse and corruption within the government.

I am fine with the idea that Texas might pass laws that the Supreme Court don't agree with, as long as California is also allowed to pass laws that the Supreme Court doesn't agree with.

I find the recent ruling in California against violent video games to be shameful.
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:10 PM
 
17,027 posts, read 9,521,810 times
Reputation: 5701
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redshadowz View Post



I despise this unquestioned judicial dictatorship we have now in Washington, that keeps reinterpreting the constitution to mean whatever they want to mean.

Living document my ass.

What irks me to no end is that "interpreting" the Constitution means determining if a Law lines u with or violates what is in the Constitution, not coming up with your own interpretation as the Court does.

That's why we have government out of control legislating what it not allowable, then is stamped by the Court.

The Commerce Clause is the best example of this.

The close votes by the Court do indeed illustrate this problem.
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:14 PM
 
Location: Palm Springs, CA
26,529 posts, read 24,949,987 times
Reputation: 7739
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redshadowz View Post
I find the recent ruling in California against violent video games to be shameful.
Actually, it wasn't a vote against violent video games. It was a vote that said the government may not restrict people under 18 from accessing those games. I found it to be an endorsement of freedom and liberty.
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Old 07-09-2011, 07:39 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
41,314 posts, read 39,496,708 times
Reputation: 7107
Quote:
Why is it that Americans seem to so readily allow five unelected, life-termed men to dictate what is and what isn't permissable, seemingly without question?
I'm 100% positive you would back 5-4 rulings all the way....if the ruling had your approval.

SCOTUS is the highest court in the land...the buck stops there.

Elections have consequences....that's why 2012 is so important.
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Old 07-09-2011, 07:46 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,134 posts, read 20,762,727 times
Reputation: 8292
It's the Supreme Koch, they are bought and paid for
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