Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Court of One

Really, this whole thing about a Supreme Court is a smokescreen. There is no supreme court. At least, there are not nine justices who sit and decide cases brought before the supreme court. There is only one justice, and his name is Anthony Kennedy. He is a court of one, and his is the only opinion that truly matters. Kennedy is the swing vote on a divided court. He is the only justice who has been in the majority on every decision this year. Think about that. His vote is the vote. He is, quite simply, the guy.

Today's decisions are cases in point. The first two were predictable in their outcome: the court voted to subvert Brown vs the Board of Education and the Sherman Anti Trust Act, overturning lots of previous court precedent in the process (Stare what?) a the bidding of the administration and the usual crowd of Chicago school economists. The majority was the usual one: Kennedy, Roberts, Thomas, Scalia, and Alito. In the third case however, Kennedy sided with the more liberal wing of the court in upholding the appeal of a death row inmate who was diagnosed schizophrenic at the time of his crimes.

Some might argue that this just means that Kennedy is the only thoughtful jurist on the panel--but then those people won't have read the eloquent and well reasoned opinions of seven of the other eight justices on the panel (Thomas is a blithering idiot and his writing shows it). No, what Kennedy is in fact is the guy in the middle being courted/pulled in both directions by the agendas of the eight people he works with. Some people wouldn't envy him, but I do. He, not President Bush, is the most powerful man in the world. We may live in a democracy, we may have a legislature and a president, but Kennedy's is the only vote that counts, and he has veto power even over the president.


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