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●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.
●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes. .
●Liberals think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.
●The single most important problem in economics is the gap between rich and poor.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening the gap between rich and poor.
●Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
●To survive long term, a monetarily non-sovereign government must have a positive balance of payments.
●Everything in economics devolves to motive, and the motive is the Gap between the rich and the rest..
A vast chasm lies between “should” and “is,” and nowhere is this more apparent than with the Supreme Court of the United States.
Many people believe the Court should be politically neutral, neither liberal nor conservative, judging each case on legal merits alone.
Yet, cases do not exist in a vacuum. What may be legal in one setting, may be illegal in another.
A soldier legally can kill an enemy combatant, not because of what the enemy is doing, but rather because of who the enemy is.
A military pilot legally can drop a bomb that kills an entire village, or in the case of Nagasaki, an entire city. A civilian cannot legally do that. Context is important.
Further, each Supreme Court justice has a personal history, personal proclivities, unique DNA, all of which affect his/her attitudes.
On these bases, neutrality is impossible, yet perhaps a desirable goal.
Justices are granted life terms, to insulate them from political pressure. Both political parties claim to deplore judicial activism, though these claims refer to decisions with which each party disagrees.
Presidents from each party, nominate judicial candidates whom they feel will be activist in the “correct” direction, and are disappointed when “their” judges do not vote “appropriately.”
American Constitution Society
WHAT TO MAKE OF THE SUPREME COURT’S JUDICIAL ACTIVISM
Date: September 17, 2013
In terms of “readiness to overturn legislation” the Roberts Court is “one of the most activist courts in history” Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said in late August.
Two leading constitutional law scholars, in Issues Briefs released today by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS), buttress Ginsburg’s assertion with in-depth studies of high court opinions and voting behaviors that reveal the court’s conservatives are more often the most activist.
In “The Behavior of Supreme Court Justices When Their Behavior Counts the Most,” University of Chicago law school Professor Geoffrey R. Stone, examining twenty high-profile Supreme Court cases on constitutional concerns, explains why the Roberts Court’s conservative justices are just as activist, if not more so, then it’s left-of-center justices.
Stone argues that the high court’s conservative justices, despite their rhetoric to the contrary, are hardly paragons of judicial restraint.
The Roberts court was criticized by legal scholars for being too activist — too far from neutral. Yet:
Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. famously said, during his confirmation process, that being a judge is akin to a baseball umpire – you just call balls and strikes.
Whether Roberts meant what he said, at the time he said it, or merely was playing to his audience, never may be known. In either case, his court has been far more that an umpire calling balls and strikes.
Stone’s analysis of the outcomes in twenty cases covering an array of concerns, such as voting rights, Second Amendment, affirmative action, reproductive rights and equality, reveals how the narrative on judicial activism has been badly distorted.
“The traditional understanding – that liberals are judicial activists and conservatives are committed to judicial restraint – would lead one to expect that the moderately liberal justices in these cases would have been the most activist, the moderately conservative justices would have been in the middle, and the very conservative justices would been the most restrained.
“Not so,” Stone continues.
Stone concludes the “voting behavior of the very conservative justices cannot be explained by any commitment to the principle of judicial restraint.”
Which brings us to Justice Scalia’s infamous “originalism.”
(Stone said,) “Originalism asserts that those who crafted and ratified our Constitution intended the meaning and effect of their handiwork to be limited to the specific understandings of their time.
But this view erroneously attributes to the Framers a narrow-mindedness and short-sightedness that belies their true spirit.”
He continues, “The notion that any particular moment’s understanding of the meaning of the Constitution’s broad and open-ended provisions should be locked into place and taken as constitutionally definitive would have seemed completely wrong-headed to the Framers, who held a much bolder and more confident understanding of their own achievements and aspirations.”
Instead, Stone sees a group of conservative justices who have let ideology and prejudices influence their work, not a commitment to a serious method of constitutional interpretation.
Clearly, Justice Scalia’s sarcastic, acerbic rants, in which he claims not only to know what the Framers wanted, but that their wants of 200 years ago are inviolate, and must be honored today — those rants are hubric wrongheadness at best and intentional political garbage in reality.
Despite ongoing Republican complaints about political activism, they howl like angry children denied a cookie, when the court is not activist enough.
Infuriated by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that kept President Barack Obama’s healthcare program intact, conservative ire was trained particularly on Chief Justice John Roberts, who was appointed to the court by Republican President George W. Bush.
What!!? A justice appointed by a Republican president, not toeing the Tea/Libertarian/Republican party line?
Outrageous that this man, whom we appointed, should now vote his conscience and legal beliefs, and against us!!
(Roberts) has voted with court conservatives on many landmark cases, including ones involving campaign-finance laws and voting rights. But he also enraged opponents of the Affordable Care Act three years ago when he cast a deciding vote in rejecting a different legal challenge to the law.
Translation: Roberts voted like our puppet, that money is speech (giving the rich more freedom of speech than the poor) and that voting should be made more difficult for the poor.
We thought we could rely on him to continue providing the same poor quality judging.
“He’s let down the [conservative] movement,” said Curt Levey of the Committee for Justice, which advocates for conservative judicial nominees. “He may feel he has no obligation to the movement.”
Uh, well, in fact, Mr. Levey, as a Supreme Court justice, Roberts should have no obligation to any movement.
Amazingly, Levey seems to have no concept of the Supreme Court’s purpose (despite his being a part of the Committee for “Justice.”
Levey said that the pressure will now fall on Republican presidential hopefuls to spell out in detail their views on court appointments – and simple generalities about being faithful to the letter of the U.S. Constitution won’t cut it.
The last thing the right-wing Committee for “Justice” wants is a judge who is faithful to the U.S. Constitution.
They want a judge who is faithful only to the Republican party — another political hack, mouthing political rhetoric in unison.
And then, it really shifts into insanity mode:
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, (who) warned that the legalization of same-sex marriage would lead to the “criminalization of Christianity,” (said we) “must resist and reject judicial tyranny, not retreat.”
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said the decision “will pave the way for an all out assault against the religious freedom rights of Christians who disagree with this decision.”
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said “the only alternative left for the American people is to support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to reaffirm the ability of the states to continue to define marriage.”
Rick Santorum: “Today, five unelected justices decided to redefine the foundational unit that binds together our society without public debate or input. Now is the people’s opportunity respond because the future of the institution of marriage is too important to not have a public debate.”
Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry said as president, he would “appoint strict Constitutional conservatives who will apply the law as written.”
Ted Cruz says the Constitution gives the Congress the power to strip the courts of jurisdiction. Furthermore, Cruz suggested that Supreme Court justices be subject to retention elections, so they could be voted out of office if they started abusing their power.
It’s all craziness, of course. “Criminalization of Christianity,” by the Christians on the Supreme Court?
“Resist and reject” Supreme Court decisions?
And Walker’s constitutional amendment to define marriage? Why is an amendment needed? No one is forcing Walker to marry a man.
Santorum bemoans “five unelected judges” making decisions. Apparently, he (and Cruz) feel there is not enough politics in the court, so justices should be elected, then thrown off the bench if they don’t vote “right.”
Ah, the madness in the air is palpable.
But I suspect it isn’t real madness. The Republican Presidential candidates have decided, rightly or wrongly, that their voting base is stupid, bigoted and irrational, so to appeal to primary election voters, they must say stupid, bigoted, irrational things.
How sad, for the Republican party, that the extremists exert so much influence. It wasn’t always thus. Years ago, when I voted Republican, the party actually was composed of people who cared about America.
Anyway, the answer to the title question, “Should SCOTUS be politically neutral or activist?” is this:
SCOTUS should be politically neutral and morally activist.
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
The Ten Steps to Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Federally funded free Medicare — parts A, B & D plus long term nursing care — for everyone (Click here)
3. Provide an Economic Bonus to every man, woman and child in America, and/or every state a per capita Economic Bonus. (Click here) Or institute a reverse income tax.
4. Federally funded, free education (including post-grad) for everyone. Click here
5. Salary for attending school (Click here)
6. Eliminate corporate taxes (Click here)
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually. (Refer to this.)
8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher, progressive tax rates on all their forms of income. (Click here)
9. Federal ownership of all banks (Click here and here)
10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99% (Click here)
Initiating The Ten Steps sequentially will add dollars to the economy, stimulate the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.-
10 Steps to Economic Misery: (Click here:)
1. Maintain or increase the FICA tax..
2. Spread the myth Social Security, Medicare and the U.S. government are insolvent.
3. Cut federal employment in the military, post office, other federal agencies.
4. Broaden the income tax base so more lower income people will pay.
5. Cut financial assistance to the states.
6. Spread the myth federal taxes pay for federal spending.
7. Allow banks to trade for their own accounts; save them when their investments go sour.
8. Never prosecute any banker for criminal activity.
9. Nominate arch conservatives to the Supreme Court.
10. Reduce the federal deficit and debt
No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.
1. A growing economy requires a growing supply of dollars (GDP=Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)
2. All deficit spending grows the supply of dollars
3. The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control.
4. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.
THE RECESSION CLOCK
Long term view:
Vertical gray bars mark recessions.
As the federal deficit growth lines drop, we approach recession, which will be cured only when the growth lines rise. Increasing federal deficit growth (aka “stimulus”) is necessary for long-term economic growth.