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A Supreme Error
Townhall.com ^ | June 13, 2008 | Fred Thompson

Posted on 06/13/2008 4:26:54 PM PDT by Josh Painter

In reading the majority opinion I am struck by the utter waste that is involved here... all those years... studying how adherence to legal precedent is the bedrock of the rule of law, when it turns out, all they really needed was a Pew poll, a subscription to the New York Times, and the latest edition of “How to Make War for Dummies.”

It is truly stunning that this court has seen fit to arrogate unto itself a role in the most important issue facing any country, self-defense, in a case in which Congress has in fact repeatedly acted. This was not a case where Congress did not set the rules; it did. But the court still decided – in the face of overwhelming precedent to the contrary – to intervene. This decision, or course, will allow for "President Bush Is Rebuffed” headlines, the implication being that the Administration was caught red-handed violating clearly established Constitutional rights when in fact the Administration, and the Congress for that matter, followed guidelines established by the Supreme Court itself in prior cases.

People can disagree over whether Congress got it right, but at least members have to face the voters. What remedy do people have now if they don’t like the court’s decision? None. If that thought is not enough to cause concerned citizens to turn out on Election Day to elect a new president, then I don’t know what will be.

I also find it just a tad ironic that in a case involving habeas corpus, which literally means that one must produce a body (or person) before a court to explain the basis on which that person is being detained, the decision of this court may mean more fallen bodies in the defense of a Constitution some of these justices ignored.

(Excerpt) Read more at townhall.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Government; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: decision; fredthompson; gitmo; law; scotus

1 posted on 06/13/2008 4:26:58 PM PDT by Josh Painter
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To: Josh Painter
Fred, you should have sucked it up, even though you didn't particularly want it, and made a genuine effort for the presidency. You could have straighten out the course for the country and nominated two strict constructionists for the Supreme Court, then bowed out for your second term in deference to your younger, conservative vice president. Obama wouldn't have stood a chance against you.

Would it have killed you?

(just my opinion.)

2 posted on 06/13/2008 4:40:27 PM PDT by FrdmLvr
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To: Josh Painter

FDT bump


3 posted on 06/13/2008 4:41:22 PM PDT by Christian4Bush ("In Israel, the President hit the nail on the head. The nails are complaining loudly." - John Bolton)
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To: Josh Painter

And, that’s why I still like Fred...

Clear headed and rational.


4 posted on 06/13/2008 4:57:14 PM PDT by PubliusMM (RKBA; a matter of fact, not opinion)
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To: Josh Painter

I don’t think Fred can make another run at the Presidency. However, I’ve always seen him as SCOTUS material. And he is a Friend of John. The Senate would have a very tough time knocking Fred down.


5 posted on 06/13/2008 5:05:11 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (I tried to explain that I meant it as a compliment, but that only appears to have made things worse.)
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To: jellybean; Politicalmom
Fred ping

(Note I'm touting him for SCOTUS)

6 posted on 06/13/2008 5:06:25 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (I tried to explain that I meant it as a compliment, but that only appears to have made things worse.)
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To: jellybean; carlo3b; girlangler; KoRn; Shortstop7; Lunatic Fringe; Darnright; babygene; pitbully; ...

FRed Ping!!


7 posted on 06/13/2008 5:23:21 PM PDT by Politicalmom (I've left the Grand Ol' Plantation. / GOP '08,- NO Soup for YOU!)
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To: NonValueAdded

You’re easy. I’m holding out for McCain to drop dead at the convention, and FRed becoming the nominee. :)

(Don’t get your panties in twist, all you sensitive/easily offended people. I don’t REALLY want the man to drop dead.)


8 posted on 06/13/2008 5:25:44 PM PDT by Politicalmom (I've left the Grand Ol' Plantation. / GOP '08,- NO Soup for YOU!)
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To: FrdmLvr

From a former hard core fredhead, I agree.

OTOH, would I really want a POTUS who couldn’t even tough out a primary campaign at least until super Tuesday? And, to pour salt on the wounds, not even have the courtesy to publically make an announcement or send an email to donors and supporters?


9 posted on 06/13/2008 5:30:43 PM PDT by papasmurf (Unless I post a link to a resource, what I post is opinion, regardless of how I spin it.)
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To: Josh Painter
The central issue, as stated wonderfully by Sen. Thompson in his opinion piece:

It is truly stunning that this court has seen fit to arrogate unto itself a role in the most important issue facing any country, self-defense, in a case in which Congress has in fact repeatedly acted. This was not a case where Congress did not set the rules; it did. But the court still decided – in the face of overwhelming precedent to the contrary – to intervene. This decision, or course, will allow for "President Bush Is Rebuffed” headlines, the implication being that the Administration was caught red-handed violating clearly established Constitutional rights when in fact the Administration, and the Congress for that matter, followed guidelines established by the Supreme Court itself in prior cases.

10 posted on 06/13/2008 5:34:36 PM PDT by Wolfstar (Only a selfish, idiotic coward thinks the way to win in politics is for his own side to lose.)
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To: Josh Painter
"What remedy do people have now if they don’t like the court’s decision? None."

On the contrary, we may simply conclude that the kangaroo symposium is a pack of fools and ignore everything they say. They are five fools in silly overshirts. They haven't a scrap of power among them. Our voluntary obediance to their every inanity is all there is, and we can withdraw it at will tomorrow. And we should.

11 posted on 06/13/2008 5:42:02 PM PDT by JasonC (There will be hell to pay.)
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To: papasmurf
send an email to donors and supporters?

He sent me a very nice letter. The letter impressed me as being much more refined and respectful than the usual campaign hard sell letters.

12 posted on 06/13/2008 5:43:32 PM PDT by tommix2
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To: Wolfstar

So five liberal old fools shuffle into their black robes and pontificate one more stupid decision. These five geezers are way beyond their expiration date and deserve to be removed from office. This affects the safety and defense of the United States and a 5-4 decision is not sufficient to shield these traitors from our anger.


13 posted on 06/13/2008 5:44:34 PM PDT by Czar ( StillFedUptotheTeeth@Washington)
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To: NonValueAdded

As long as the Dims are in control of the Senate, Fred will never see the inside of a hearing room.


14 posted on 06/13/2008 5:46:26 PM PDT by RetiredArmy (Even if he wins, obama WILL NEVER BE MY PRESIDENT OF MY COUNTRY!!!)
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To: Wolfstar
It is much worse than that.

"In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make."

Black letter law. If the congress makes an exception to supreme court jurisdiction, which it has here as recently as 2006, then the court simply has no jurisdiction, and nothing is says on such subjects has the slightest force. They are just five private individual pontificating. All the rest of us only contracted to listen to them *within* the sphere our *representatives* decide. When they deliberately step outside that sphere, they cease to be our agents and revert to their natural capacity as private windbags. We can ignore them, utterly.

15 posted on 06/13/2008 5:47:51 PM PDT by JasonC (There will be hell to pay.)
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To: tommix2

Oh, I got a letter, a month later. Many, right here on FR, complained of the same thing. Still, that does nothing to negate my point.


16 posted on 06/13/2008 5:48:48 PM PDT by papasmurf (Unless I post a link to a resource, what I post is opinion, regardless of how I spin it.)
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To: Politicalmom
" I don’t REALLY want the man to drop dead."

No. But it would be nice if he would just go away.
17 posted on 06/13/2008 5:48:54 PM PDT by shibumi (".....panta en pasin....." - Origen)
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To: Politicalmom

SCOTUS sounds like a great spot for Fred!


18 posted on 06/13/2008 5:56:56 PM PDT by Shortstop7
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To: Shortstop7

I’d take it. :)


19 posted on 06/13/2008 5:58:02 PM PDT by Politicalmom (I've left the Grand Ol' Plantation. / GOP '08,- NO Soup for YOU!)
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To: Politicalmom

Fred’s too old for Supreme Court, but he would do a good job of being a recess appointment if Congress refuses to approve the next conservative nominee. I’d appoint Bork for that, first, but Fred would be a good one, too.


20 posted on 06/13/2008 6:00:26 PM PDT by Defiant (Leave it to the Dems to nominate someone so bad I may be forced to vote for McCain.)
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To: papasmurf
OTOH, would I really want a POTUS who couldn’t even tough out a primary campaign at least until super Tuesday?

At the time Fred Thompson dropped out, it looked to me as though:

  1. If Fred Thompson were to drop out, Mitt Romney could probably stop McCain.
  2. If Fred Thompson were to stay in, he would split enough votes with Mitt Romney to hand McCain the win.
We all know that the (bleep) McCain has managed to essentially secure the nomination despite Fred's having dropped out, but Mitt Romney probably put up a better fight than he could have done with Mr. Thompson in the race.

If anything, I consider Mr. Thompson's willingness to drop out for the sake of his country a sign of good character.

21 posted on 06/13/2008 6:03:12 PM PDT by supercat
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To: Defiant
I’d appoint Bork for that, first, but Fred would be a good one, too.

Isn't Bork anti-gun?

22 posted on 06/13/2008 6:10:39 PM PDT by supercat
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To: supercat
Isn't Bork anti-gun?

Yes he is. The Dems did us a favor with him.

23 posted on 06/13/2008 6:11:45 PM PDT by Redcloak (The 2nd Amendment: It's not about sporting goods.)
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To: JasonC
We can ignore them, utterly.

Unfortunately, from the moment President Thomas Jefferson caved in to the first power-grab by the Supreme Court in Marbury v. Madison (1803) that established the principle of "judicial review," the nation has been on a slippery slope to the horrific decision this week. Like the legislative and executive branches of the federal government, the judicial has been steadily increasing its power and reach ever since Marbury.

Until, and unless, congress and the executive tell the court to stick it where the sun don't shine in cases where the court tries to tell the other two branches what to do, nothing can be done by anyone. Oh, and by the way, state courts have followed the SCUS lead in expanding their hubris to the point where they tell their state legislatures and executives what to do.

24 posted on 06/13/2008 6:13:14 PM PDT by Wolfstar (Only a selfish, idiotic coward thinks the way to win in politics is for his own side to lose.)
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To: Redcloak
Isn't Bork anti-gun?

Yes he is. The Dems did us a favor with him.

What I'd like to see, though I know it will never happen, would be for a judge to openly acknowledge that while it is reasonable to adhere to precedent in cases which are truly ambiguous, any decision which is not consistent with the Constitution and applicable laws thereunder is illegitimate, and no level of precedent can change that.

BTW, I'd also like to see an acknowledgment that if an omniscient jury would acquit someone, the person should justly be acquitted. While it is routine nowadays for the state to withhold information because it knows that such information would lead a jury toward acquittal, I would regard such actions as illegitimate. To be sure, if a defendant opens up such lines of inquiry the state should have the authority to open up lines of cross-inquiry which would otherwise be forbidden, but denying juries the information necessary to make a proper decision undermines the jury system.

25 posted on 06/13/2008 6:17:52 PM PDT by supercat
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To: shibumi

“But it would be nice if he would just go away.”

Oh wouldn’t it! I keep dreaming that McCain could be dumped at the convention and Fred Thompson/Mitt Romney be drafted. Have heard Romney on two different radio shows this week were he said he is against closing GITMO and the court decision, against Cap&Trade, and FOR drilling here and now in America. That is why McCAin will not pick Romney for his VP. Romney is just too conservative for McCAin! Makes me ill to have to vote for McCAin so I do hope he only serves a short time or that we have a chance to elect a conservative in four years!

Wish we could hear from any Freepers or FR readers who are delegates for McCain. Wonder if they have “second thoughts” and would consider NOT voting for McCAin at convention. Would love to see my dream come true: Thompson/Romney! Someone here on FR mentioned that Ron Paul is working for an upset at the convention but don’t know if there is anything to it. My choice now is McCain and I just don’t like that choice!


26 posted on 06/13/2008 6:20:11 PM PDT by seekthetruth
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To: Wolfstar
Unfortunately, from the moment President Thomas Jefferson caved in to the first power-grab by the Supreme Court in Marbury v. Madison...

What exactly could he have done? Essentially, what happened was that the Court took a case which circumstances had already rendered moot before it was heard. Nobody could argue that the decision was unfair for the winner, because he "won"; nobody could argue that the decision was unfair for the "loser" because he didn't really lose anything. Since nobody could really dispute the outcome, nobody could really protest that the court had no legitimate authority to make the decision in the first place.

27 posted on 06/13/2008 6:22:48 PM PDT by supercat
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To: Wolfstar
On the contrary. I never contracted to obey the court in cases where it ignores the limits on its jurisdiction the congress I'm represented in, set by law. Yes the president and congress should ignore such clearly unconstitutional decisions. But so should all the rest of us. In private life, in our capacity as jurors, as voters, everything. Their mere wind simply isn't law.
28 posted on 06/13/2008 6:41:40 PM PDT by JasonC (There will be hell to pay.)
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To: supercat
What exactly could he have done?

There is nothing in the Constitution that gives the judiciary the power to review laws passed by congress and declare them unconstitutional. Marshall was motivated by politics. He was a Federalist while Jefferson and Madison were "Democratic-Republicans." Marbury, like Marshall, was a Federalist.

Marshall wanted to embarrass and rebuke Jefferson and Madison, so he created out of whole cloth the notion of "judicial review," grabbing for the court the power to rule acts of congress unconstitutional. That was the first violation of the separation of powers in our history.

Jefferson (and congress, for that matter; it was filled with Jeffersonians at the time) should have been true to the founding constitutional principles and told the court it had no standing to even rule on the Marbury matter. Jefferson should have made the case publically for rejecting "judicial review" of acts of congress, because such review is not in the constitutional powers granted the court. We have had an increasingly runaway judiciary ever since.

29 posted on 06/13/2008 7:01:39 PM PDT by Wolfstar (Only a selfish, idiotic coward thinks the way to win in politics is for his own side to lose.)
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To: JasonC

I think that Bush should just ignore this decision as the SCOTUS clearly doesn’t have jurisdiction over this.


30 posted on 06/13/2008 7:15:37 PM PDT by murron (Proud Marine Mom)
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To: Wolfstar
Marshall wanted to embarrass and rebuke Jefferson and Madison, so he created out of whole cloth the notion of "judicial review," grabbing for the court the power to rule acts of congress unconstitutional. That was the first violation of the separation of powers in our history.

Yes, but my point is that (my recollection is a little fuzzy) the rule that the Court struck down had already been rendered meaningless. If the Court's ruling had forbidden the enforcement of a law that actually meant something, Jefferson could have simply ignored the ruling and enforced the law anyway. As it was, though, since the Court wasn't really demanding or forbidding any action by Jefferson, there was no way to demonstrate acceptance or refusal.

BTW, one thing I wish the Court would do more often would be to reject a case without prejudice if a particular side fails to present its best argument, and ask that the case be re-presented using the proper argument. From what I know of the facts of the case, the proper outcome in Lawrence v. Texas would have been a remand to trial court with instructions that the jury should acquit if it makes certain factual findings. The Supreme Court could not legitimately made such a ruling without the proper arguments having been presented, but finding against the defendant would have been politically tenuous. Having the Court suggest an argument to an appellant/appellee might not seem proper, but establishing precedent based on faulty argument is even worse.

31 posted on 06/13/2008 7:25:59 PM PDT by supercat
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To: supercat

If Bork is anti-2nd Amendment, then that would weigh heavily against him. I don’t know. I know what I read of him back when he was nominated and since was highly favorable. But I don’t recall his specific thoughts on that subject.


32 posted on 06/13/2008 8:00:31 PM PDT by Defiant (Leave it to the Dems to nominate someone so bad I may be forced to vote for McCain.)
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To: JasonC

Bingo, the real problem here is that they ignored the jurisdictional limitation Congress put on the legislation it passed. By enforcing the decision, the President is complicit.

Someone mentioned Marbury vs. Madison. Marbury is irrelevant. It doesn’t address express limitations on the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court placed by Congress. The former justice Roberts even acknowledged this when he tried to get an amendment passed removing this power from Congress and it failed.


33 posted on 06/13/2008 9:02:17 PM PDT by Texas Federalist (Fred Thompson 08)
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To: supercat

How do you know he dropped out for the sake of the Country? He’s never made that statement, AFAIK.

At the time Fred dropped out it looked to me like he needed to retrench and get serious. His message was catching and just starting to take hold.

I never saw, and still don’t see, any valid reason for him to have dropped out. That he did it the way he did, felt like a slap in the face to some of us who held him in such high regard.

I’ll always respect the man’s politics, but his people skills suck.


34 posted on 06/13/2008 10:02:55 PM PDT by papasmurf (Unless I post a link to a resource, what I post is opinion, regardless of how I spin it.)
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To: papasmurf

He lost the South Carolina primary, which was right in his own back yard. He figured if he couldn’t win there, he couldn’t win the nomination. He was right.

As far as sending out letters, his mother had been taken ill with pneumonia and hospitalized. He was a little preoccupied at the moment. Family comes first.


35 posted on 06/13/2008 11:30:19 PM PDT by Josh Painter (“I don’t believe that people should be able to own guns.” - Barack Obama)
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To: Politicalmom
Neither do I. Wink Wink!
36 posted on 06/14/2008 4:18:59 AM PDT by ImpBill (Hi, My name is Greg and I am a recovering "R"epublican! And I have recovered into a "r"epublican.)
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To: Politicalmom

Great piece and so....Fred.

~snip~

In reading the majority opinion I am struck by the utter waste that is involved here. No, not the waste of military resources and human life, although such a result is tragically obvious. I refer to the waste of all those years these justices spent in law school studying how adherence to legal precedent is the bedrock of the rule of law, when it turns out, all they really needed was a Pew poll, a subscription to the New York Times, and the latest edition of “How to Make War for Dummies.”

~snip~


37 posted on 06/14/2008 4:33:20 AM PDT by SE Mom (Proud mom of an Iraq war combat vet)
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To: Josh Painter
One can only ponder the state of our nation directed by the subjective instead of the Constitution.

We've been seeing the result for the last 60+ years.
38 posted on 06/14/2008 4:41:58 AM PDT by aruanan
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To: NonValueAdded
" I’ve always seen him as SCOTUS material."

I like the sound of that. Do we know if FDT would consider that position?

39 posted on 06/14/2008 5:32:07 AM PDT by sweet_diane ("They hate us cause they ain't us." RTR!)
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To: Politicalmom
You’re easy. I’m holding out for McCain to drop dead at the convention, and FRed becoming the nominee.

It's okay, honey ... now roll over and go back to sleep.

40 posted on 06/14/2008 7:12:57 AM PDT by TheRightGuy (ERROR CODE 018974523: Random Tagline Compiler Failure)
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To: Politicalmom

Thanks for the ping!!


41 posted on 06/14/2008 9:00:52 AM PDT by FlashBack (www.proudpatriots.org/www.woundedwarriorproject.org/www.moveamericaforward.org)
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To: Josh Painter

Fred Bump!


42 posted on 06/14/2008 9:11:44 AM PDT by W04Man (OUR TROOPS DESERVE A QUALIFIED CIC....... http:Vets4McCain.com.... sign the Roll Call!)
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To: Politicalmom

Thanks for the ping.

I’m still with Fred, with whatever good he can do. Including this article.


43 posted on 06/14/2008 4:27:08 PM PDT by daylilly
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To: FrdmLvr

Unfortunately, we only elect leaders of the caliber of FDR or Reagan when the feces has truly impacted the rotation device. I suspect Fred would qualify, if he had the determination to do what it took to get the job.

Perhaps it takes the mess to produce the determination.

It would have been an amusing sidelight to note that Jeri is younger than Michelle Osama and has managed to be proud of her country numerous times.....


44 posted on 06/16/2008 4:30:40 PM PDT by E Rocc (Resident smartass and Myspace Freepers group moderator. (http://groups.myspace.com/freepers))
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