SCOTUS under Trump


I’ll shortcut to his eventual reply to you:

I know, I know, water and arable land, etc.


You can ABSOLUTELY call them a bigot. The point being if you do so, don’t expect to have a constructive conversation with them. That’s the whole idea of this; if you want to have a constructive conversation with someone, playing the semantics game can be quite helpful. There’s not always a reason to do so (and often reasons not to), hence me trying to explain this isn’t a blanket approach to the world.


On his first day of arguments, during just one case—Nielsen v. Preap—Kavanaugh tried to speak at the same time as other justices—despite the tradition of new justices deferring to established justices—and interrupted each of the lawyers twice.
Kavanaugh didn’t so much ask questions as make statements. The types of statements that should have come from the government’s attorney, not a justice. When he did ask questions—well, here’s an example of a “question”:

Is that presumption based on what we think was really going through Congress’s mind at the time or is it based on a constitutional overlay, because what was really going through Congress’s time [sic] in 1996 was harshness on this topic. Is that not right?

Kavanaugh didn’t even pretend he possesses the independence required for a justice.


The perfect Supreme Court Justice for the Trump era.


Just one more corrupted institution, nbd fam.


Maybe the other justices shouldn’t have been so circumspect about his nomination post-hearing. He clearly doesn’t care about the norms of civility


Don’t worry - when Justice Hannity and Justice Carlson join the Court, Kavanaugh will seem like one of the more moderate justices in contrast.


I have a good friend here, an Ecuadorian man, who owns a restaurant and gives free Spanish lessons to extranjeros twice a week. We’ve been going to him for two years, and one of the things we always do is stay after the class ends and eat dinner there. The food is great, and it’s one of several things we do to pay him back for his time. Over time a small group has developed that stays together for dinner and we talk about politics, current events, etc.

So last night another couple from the class stayed to join us for dinner. Before long, they were ranting about the injustice to Kavanaugh. She said things like ‘it’s not like it is impossible for women to lie’, and ‘the whole thing was totally engineered by Diane Feinstein’. He said things like ‘her own best friend said that it never happened’, and ‘all the other people she named as witnesses said under oath that it never happened’

I tried using reason, for example asking him to name the people who testified under oath that Ford’s story never happened - as opposed to saying they didn’t recall any such incident - but if course he couldn’t do that. I tried pointing out Kavanaugh’s own deceptions, e.g. claiming that he had never been to a party with those people when his own calendar shows he went to a party with many of the people named by Ford. But he didn’t know anything about that, and said he thought Kavanaugh’s calendar proved it couldn’t have happened.

The whole thing was futile. Eventually one of the women present said ‘I was raped. I know exactly where it happened and who did it, but I couldn’t tell you for sure exactly what date it occurred or even how I got home afterward. And there were no witnesses. So, am I lying?’

That basically shut them up. The amazing thing is that both of them are Canadians, and presumably don’t have any stake in the issue at all. Of course, later one of them was talking about how brilliant Jordan Peterson is, so there’s that.


Welcome to our daily world in the States, man.


In my experience this holds true for every interaction I’ve had with Trump supporters, including the few on this forum. I stopped trying to have a dialog with any of them - it was too sisyphean unfortunately.




In other words, “Shut up, Lesley: the traditional White Male Plutocracy is assured.”


SCOTUS has blocked the Wilbur Ross deposition. I’m not sure that bodes well for any chances if Mueller were to try to subpoena Trump, though arguably that was unlikely at this point.

The actual order is here:

It’s interesting because the ruling is basically silent. It blocks the Ross deposition but not the other discovery activities in the lawsuit about the census question. Most of the ruling is a dissent from Gorsuch, joined by Thomas, arguing that the Court should have blocked all discovery on the grounds that it is settled law that you can’t compel discovery for executive actions for which there is a clear public record justifying the reasons for the action.


Crowdfunding to pressure Collins on Kavanaugh vote likely to face legal challenge.

Money = speech, except when it doesn’t or so the GOP would have it.




While of course I don’t think for a minute the majority of GOP congresscritters would make a fuss had this been turned around the other way, I have to admit I kind of wonder about this, myself. IANAL, so my awesome repertoire of legal skillz comes through being around people much more intelligent than I.

So my underwhelming mind likewise wonders how such a view would extend to PACs who provide material support for politicians who champion their views. While I assume it’s not illegal (because they’ve been around forever), is there an ethical difference?


I think the problem in this case was the explicit quid pro quo.


We can not have a situation where the public is not able to tell their congresspeople what they want and include a threat to support a different candidate if they don’t get it. Any ruling against this fundraising would be a ruling against the First Amendment.


The idea that it’s a bribe is a farce. There’s no difference between them doing it with millions and me doing it on my own with a $20 donation. If I say to Susan Collins ‘if you vote for X I’ll contribute to your opponent’, that is not a bribe.