Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Justice Scalia's 'Originalist' Hypocrisy

By Robert Parry
January 5, 2011

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia unintentionally revealed the hypocrisy of the Right’s rhetoric about “originalist” interpretations of the U.S. Constitution with his comments about how the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of “equal protection under the law” doesn’t mean equal rights for women.

Read on.

9 comments:

Randy said...

Regarding this paragraph of your excellent post: “The only issue is whether it prohibits it. It doesn't. Nobody ever thought that that's what it meant. Nobody ever voted for that. If the current society wants to outlaw discrimination by sex, hey we have things called legislatures, and they enact things called laws. You don't need a constitution to keep things up-to-date. All you need is a legislature and a ballot box.”

Here, once again, Scalia contradicts himself. If, indeed, the 14th Amendment doesn't afford equal rights to women, doesn't it follow that a state that enacts an "equal rights law for women" would be violating the "original intent" of the authors of the 14th, and would therefore be committing an unconstitutional act?

Now don't get me wrong: I fully agree with you that the 14th does INDEED grant equal rights to women (although the ERA would have clarified the matter). I'm only suggesting that Scalia, in his own defense, argued against himself. What a fool.

Anonymous said...

The concept of legal personhood is also something that the Supreme Court recognises as protected by the 14th amendment. Obviously the framers of the 14th amendment had no intent to give personhood to corporations.

Morton Kurzweil said...

It must be obvious to any observer that the rigid conservative agenda is the same as that held by the Catholic Church. The form and the philosophy promotes a hierarchal authority concerned more with maintenance of a belief through an elite corporation than any interest in the people served.
We the people, not we the pope, are the source of government authority.
The decisions of fanatical jurists place corporations on equal footing with the people as if God, Christ, and all the saints have inalienable rights under United States jurisdiction.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Robert for your excellent column on Scalia's recent disclosure that the 14th amendment doesn't give equal protection to women or to gays but how he used the 14th amendment to appoint George Bush president.

It is so depressing having such unethical legal rightwing thugs making laws favoring their clients, the wealthy elite made up of the top 1% of this country and the top officers, investors, owners of the Fortune 500 and private companies.

I've copied an pasted an interview with Victoria Collier, daughter and niece of James and Ken Collier, co-authors of a the now out of print book, "Votescam".

"Votescam" describes how Scalias reward for tossing out a nearly 20 year old vote fraud case was getting appointed to the SCOTUS. He led the Bush appointed justices to appoint Bush and overturn the State of Florida's Supreme Court ruling.

Victoria states in the interview:
...the corruption in our election system is huge; it is rampant; it is systemic. From election supervisors to the equipment that we use all the way up to state officials, secretaries of state who control the electoral process in the states, to the Supreme Court to Justice Antonin Scalia, who was responsible for covering up vote-fraud evidence that was moving through the courts in the
1980s.

An important part of the "Votescam" book, especially
in light of our last election, is when Antonin Scalia, who
wasn't a justice at the time but an appeals court judge
filed a memo in regard to Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision
that the cases should go forward and be heard. The
cases would have required testimony on the part of
people who did not want to testify, people from the
Justice Department, people from the Republican National
Committee. Judge Scalia filed a "killer memo" that's
what Jim and Ken called it, that said that although he
agreed with Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision, he still felt it
was plain on the face of it, that he fully supported prosecutorial
discretion and the dismissal of the action.

Q: What the heck does that translate to?

A: What that means is that he supported the Republican
National Committee and the Justice Department's refusal to
prosecute vote fraud. It was their discretion. They didn't have
to do it. And for that reason, he felt that the cases should
be dismissed. It was a very strange, contradictory memo
and, as it says in "Votescam," it was unprecedented 60 days
after the original order for the cases to move forward, and Scalia
surreptitiously entered the memo into the votescam file.

Q: What do you mean surreptitiously?

A: It was undocketed on unbonded, unwatermarked
paper with no time stamp and with Xerox doodles on the back.
All it lacked were tomato stains.

Scalia's payback: soon after Scalia was nominated by Bush to be the next justice to the Supreme Court.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Robert for your excellent column on Scalia's recent disclosure that the 14th amendment doesn't give equal protection to women or to gays but how he used the 14th amendment to appoint George Bush president.

It is so depressing having such unethical legal rightwing thugs making laws favoring their clients, the wealthy elite made up of the top 1% of this country and the top officers, investors, owners of the Fortune 500 and private companies.

I've copied an pasted an interview with Victoria Collier, daughter and niece of James and Ken Collier, co-authors of a the now out of print book, "Votescam".

"Votescam" describes how Scalias reward for tossing out a nearly 20 year old vote fraud case was getting appointed to the SCOTUS. He led the Bush appointed justices to appoint Bush and overturn the State of Florida's Supreme Court ruling.

Victoria states in the interview:
...the corruption in our election system is huge; it is rampant; it is systemic. From election supervisors to the equipment that we use all the way up to state officials, secretaries of state who control the electoral process in the states, to the Supreme Court to Justice Antonin Scalia, who was responsible for covering up vote-fraud evidence that was moving through the courts in the
1980s.

An important part of the "Votescam" book, especially
in light of our last election, is when Antonin Scalia, who
wasn't a justice at the time but an appeals court judge
filed a memo in regard to Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision
that the cases should go forward and be heard. The
cases would have required testimony on the part of
people who did not want to testify, people from the
Justice Department, people from the Republican National
Committee. Judge Scalia filed a "killer memo" that's
what Jim and Ken called it, that said that although he
agreed with Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision, he still felt it
was plain on the face of it, that he fully supported prosecutorial
discretion and the dismissal of the action.

Q: What the heck does that translate to?

A: What that means is that he supported the Republican
National Committee and the Justice Department's refusal to
prosecute vote fraud. It was their discretion. They didn't have
to do it. And for that reason, he felt that the cases should
be dismissed. It was a very strange, contradictory memo
and, as it says in "Votescam," it was unprecedented 60 days
after the original order for the cases to move forward, and Scalia
surreptitiously entered the memo into the votescam file.

Q: What do you mean surreptitiously?

A: It was undocketed on unbonded, unwatermarked
paper with no time stamp and with Xerox doodles on the back.
All it lacked were tomato stains.

Scalia's payback: soon after Scalia was nominated by Bush to be the next justice to the Supreme Court.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Robert for your excellent column on Scalia's recent disclosure that the 14th amendment doesn't give equal protection to women or to gays but how he used the 14th amendment to appoint George Bush president.

It is so depressing having such unethical legal rightwing thugs making laws favoring their clients, the wealthy elite made up of the top 1% of this country and the top officers, investors, owners of the Fortune 500 and private companies.

I've copied an pasted an interview with Victoria Collier, daughter and niece of James and Ken Collier, co-authors of a the now out of print book, "Votescam".

"Votescam" describes how Scalias reward for tossing out a nearly 20 year old vote fraud case was getting appointed to the SCOTUS. He led the Bush appointed justices to appoint Bush and overturn the State of Florida's Supreme Court ruling.

Victoria states in the interview:
...the corruption in our election system is huge; it is rampant; it is systemic. From election supervisors to the equipment that we use all the way up to state officials, secretaries of state who control the electoral process in the states, to the Supreme Court to Justice Antonin Scalia, who was responsible for covering up vote-fraud evidence that was moving through the courts in the
1980s.

An important part of the "Votescam" book, especially
in light of our last election, is when Antonin Scalia, who
wasn't a justice at the time but an appeals court judge
filed a memo in regard to Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision
that the cases should go forward and be heard. The
cases would have required testimony on the part of
people who did not want to testify, people from the
Justice Department, people from the Republican National
Committee. Judge Scalia filed a "killer memo" that's
what Jim and Ken called it, that said that although he
agreed with Ruth Bader Ginsburg's decision, he still felt it
was plain on the face of it, that he fully supported prosecutorial
discretion and the dismissal of the action.

Q: What the heck does that translate to?

A: What that means is that he supported the Republican
National Committee and the Justice Department's refusal to
prosecute vote fraud. It was their discretion. They didn't have
to do it. And for that reason, he felt that the cases should
be dismissed. It was a very strange, contradictory memo
and, as it says in "Votescam," it was unprecedented 60 days
after the original order for the cases to move forward, and Scalia
surreptitiously entered the memo into the votescam file.

Q: What do you mean surreptitiously?

A: It was undocketed on unbonded, unwatermarked
paper with no time stamp and with Xerox doodles on the back.
All it lacked were tomato stains.

Scalia's payback: soon after Scalia was nominated by Bush to be the next justice to the Supreme Court.

Anonymous said...

Lets not forget the same amendment was used by the likes of Scalia for corporations as well. Citizens United?

Mary Baine said...

I was appalled by this article. What I expected, from the headnote and opening paragraphs, to be a report on the danger to women's right to vote (that's 51% of the citizenry, for those who like Robert Perry appear to think of women as a "minority" and threats to their citizenship as amounting to an anecdote), turned out to be a rehashing of facts readers of Consortium.news already knew. I read on and on, assuming that at some point it would return to the startling fact of the current critical moment in American political history, when Bush's Supreme Court is well under way with its goal of withdrawing the rights of citizens and immigrants won over centuries of struggle and democratic achievement. But no.

Despite its longstanding indifference to--or perhaps ignorance of?--forms of oppression that do not affect Robert Parry and his son, I have been an active supporter of Consortium.news for several years now, in many modes. Today marks the last, and furious, day of my support. Parry has done the nation signal service, especially in his refusal to let Irangate go unmarked and unknown. I salute him. He should go on sabbatical now, and get familiar with some other, and at present more profoundly threatening forms of injustice. When he comes back, I will happily consider supporting his work again. When he can imagine my rights as a citizen and human being to be as important to a healthy society as his, he will be, and inspire, a real force to contend with.

Anonymous said...

To Mary Baine,

I feel your anger at Parry's sidestepping Scalia's comments about women not being protected under the 14th amendment.

I'm sure he didn't mean to call women a "minority".

But as a fellow female, I think you're overreacting on this.


No doubt Scalia has already waged war against a woman's right to a legal abortion and that woman's right to equal pay will be further undermined by Scalia and his likeminded friends on the Supreme Court in future SCOTUS decisions.

However, the raging issue as I see it is the blatant partisanship of the SCOTUS who essentially appointed George Bush President in December 2000 and the bigger issue that our Democracy has been destroyed by the rampant use of electronic voting machines, tabulating machines and the flagrant role of the media as the institution that "calls the election" despite not waiting for all of the votes including absentee ballots being counted for close elections or calling the election before the polls close.

We have a make believe democracy: the media decides who gets elected and the average American voter has little say in who gets elected when it takes a landslide for a President to get elected in order to make up for the 10% or more of the spoiled ballots or disenfranchised voters who find out shockingly that their name has been removed from the voter reg rolls when they try to vote.

Obviously women's rights are under attack and that's why the ERA has never been passed and probably never will be passed in this country because women will always be seen and treated by men as second class citizens no matter what the US Constitution says, unfortunately. It's enough for some of us women to stop bearing children altogether since there is so little support outside of one's immediate family, if one is lucky to have a supportive husband and family.