When I was a kid, I got in trouble (a couple of times, but there was this one time…) In truth, I had done nothing wrong, but I got caught up in a drug deal I had nothing to do with. The damaging evidence was planted by the police (I witnessed that and reported it to my public defense lawyer, who told me that’s how it works). In public, the judge was judgmental and stern, but reasonably well behaved. But there was a moment where I was sentenced, unofficially, to get a stern talking to by him in his chambers, instead of a severe actual sentence. In his chambers, he was a pompous ass. He stood to pace in his opulent office while lecturing me, and decided to re-tie his perfectly tied shoe. When he lifted his foot up to the seat of a chair, his robe fell open, and exposed … the handgun strapped to his leg. What an ass.
A couple of other times, such as in an unemployment dispute for example, the judge was an ass. In my life I learned that low level judges tend to be assholes. Perhaps that is my bad luck and not truly representative, but my experience shapes my opinion. I’ve never had the pleasure of standing in court, or in chambers, before a higher level judge. Maybe the higher level judges are not assholes, who knows.
When the right wing Trump/McConnell stacked supreme court ruined the Constitution and started America on its retraction of human rights long held and hard fought for, a lot of people were surprised. I think everyone expected the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, but I’m not sure most people expected them to lay out a road map for the retraction of most personal rights, which would be a necessary condition for the deployment of a full-on fascist government led in two years from now by Donald Trump, the real estate robber baron. (With the Proud Boys as his palace guard and Q-Anon as his brown shirts.) But I wasn’t that surprised, because I already knew that the judicial branch at the lowest levels had more assholes than the Russian Army.
Why do we revere our judicial branch? Our criminal justice system is unjust and has been for the entire history of this country. The judicial branch has been run by judges this entire time. Seems to me like this makes judges, by and large, even those with nice personalities, essentially assholes.
The most widely disseminated and widely listened to opinions about how judges are worthy of praise, trustworthy, important centers of civilization, etc, come from lawyers. Lawyers are self selected, then further culled by law school, many if not most spend almost no time in the presence of judges, so there is a great deal of further selection among them that do. Those litigators are a subset of people further subsetted, further subsetted, further subsetted, to work with, appreciate, and live by virtue of the existence of … judges. So of course lawyers say of judges what fish mongers may say of fish. Meanwhile there are fish that are complete assholes, and there are judges that are complete assholes. More, percentage-wise, judges than fish, I would judge.
The Republican Revolution is the takeover of our legislative branches by assholes. Started with Gingrich, continuing today, and with Trump, likely joined soon enough by the Executive branch. If and when Trump wins the presidency in a couple of years, and the Senate and House go Extremist Asshat, like is about to happen according to some polling, the executive branch and the legislative branch will join the judicial branch to become a trifecta of imperfection, a triumvirate of terror, a trinity of self-centered fascist demagogues.
One could argue that the judicial branch has been most of the way there all along, and this has been one of America’s best kept secrets. The transition of judges to moderators of a Gestapo-state will require the removal of those remaining judges who still believe in democracy, but judges take care of their own, and they will figure out a way to do that.
Keep this in mind: The courtroom is the opposite of a democracy. A courtroom is ruled with an iron fist. In their own courtroom, each judge has the final word, and can choose whom to give voice, and can choose what they may say and not say. Find a definition of fascism and apply it to a courtroom. It will fit nicely. The lawyers, observers, others, who work in that context and extoll the virtues of judges as fair, thoughtful, whatever, are to this fascism what the fish is to the water: they don’t realize that part of their world exists, so they don’t point it out, they don’t criticize it.
The judicial branch will be the first of three, not the third of three, branches of our government to turn full on Mussolini.
Mussolini was an asshole.
15 thoughts on “Fascism coming to America? Already there in the judicial branch.”
Give people power over others and some will abuse it. It is not a republican or democrat thing – it is a people thing.
Some parents abuse their power. Some teachers abuse their power. Some priests abuse their power. Some judges abuse their power. Some prosecutors abuse their power. Some politicians abuse their power. Some police abuse their power. Some bloggers abuse their power. Some journalists abuse their power. Some bureaucrats abuse their power.
Some in any walk of life abuse whatever power they have. That is human nature. The abusers are of all parties – not just republican. So we have to have oversight and try our best to root out the abusers.
Admittedly, this is hard to do with a lifetime appointment (Federal judges) – but there is always impeachment. Of course being an asshole isn’t an impeachable offense. Neither is rendering a decision you (or others) disagree with. You need something pretty bad to impeach – bribery, or some other criminal action. Pretty hard.
I hope this Nov. election is the cleanest in history. I hope everybody who votes only votes once and are eligible to vote. I hope everybody who is eligible to vote and wants to vote gets to vote. I hope the states do a better job with their voter records, cleans them up and keeps them clean – so we don’t mail ballots to people who no longer reside in the state, and only eligible people are on them. I hope the states do a better job keeping track of the total number of ballots printed, mailed, returned and cast so we can verify more people didn’t vote than should have voted. I hope we implement a better system (any system) to verify people don’t vote in more than one state in the same election.
I hope that the 1st amendment isn’t violated, by the government coordinating with tech companies to censor speech. Yes, tech companies can do what they want with their platform – but they cannot act as agents of the state and censor. That violates the 1st amendment.
I hope the tech platforms get a clue and realize that allowing people to express their opinion is a good thing and not ban people because their opinion is not in favor. Misinformation police are a bad idea. One day it is misinformation and the next it is a fact. Some tech platforms and their employees are abusers and are wielding their power in a very abusive and bad way.
So here is hoping for the best.
Stop with the bullshit concern about elections. There want any big fraud in 2020. We know the right is trying to limit access to the polls for people they don’t like – that’s the huge concern now. And jfc, companies aren’t censoring conservatives and they aren’t taking away their 1st amendment rights. They can’t – they are private companies.
dean: The right is trying to make sure only eligible people are voting and only voting once. We should all want that. If the government asks twitter or facebook to pull down a tweet or post, then that is government censorship. That is happening.
That’s bullshit ricks. Limiting access to voting sites in locations where poop and minorities live has only one purpose: making access to voting for people they don’t like more difficult. This continued whanging on about elections not being secure is one of your more egregious running lies.
“Find a definition of fascism and apply it to a courtroom”? Does that include family courts–domestic violence courts, and the all-too-easily abused restraining order circuses? Anything VAWA related, for that matter?
As much as the SCOTUS is packed with fascists from the right, its definitely a reaction formation to people like you, building a total surveillance state using women as enforcers of a two-tiered system of slavery based in child support laws (indenture), as these women raised the gayest generation in history on my tax dollar, and now, counseling those kids into cutting their dicks off–hey, ladies, you HAD the right to abortion, to bad you didn’t use it!
Then, a prison system made to deny males any and all opportunities whatsoever, a de facto Slavery By Another name, as you stacked the deck in society to label all male behavior as deviant in some way.
You get the fascism, and the surveillance state that YOU helped build! You get the fascist courts that saw through the bait and switch of raising a generation of kids on elfare, as their mom’s all gained financial incentives for NOT USING their abortion rights–you get the slavery you deserve now.
While you were busting male protest as “those damned MRA’s,” you overlooked the fact that many of those men were enduring fascism-the exact prescriptions of Hitler and Mussollini, but doled out by Hillary Clinton, and Kamala Harris–you get the fascism deserve now, starting with what YOU did to make that happen, bro.
In a dog eat dog world, all of us had hoped for better from you eggheads, but what we got was the dick-chopping, breast-butchering Tavistock plan instead. Which dog were you in that fight, I forget….?
If it barks like a dog, it’s probably Hitler, every time, right? Or, you, mebbe.
Not totally on topic Greg, but so I understand that one of your candidates for governor is pushing the “OMG SCHOOLS ARE MAKING Accommodations for furries” crap? That went around here in MI and it was too much even for the loons we have
What the likes of RickA prefer you not to see.
If the court upholds the rogue ‘Independent State Legislature’ theory, it would put the US squarely on path to authoritarianism
Yup, but consider
– one of the right wingers was known for sexual harassment when he was put on the bench
– one of them had a history of sexual assault while he was in college — and isn’t happy that it was brought to the eye of the public
– one of them lied through her teeth about what she viewed as ‘settled law’
– another is just a raving bigot who thinks the federalist society, an anti-democratic group, is a force for good
Scum get on the bench, you get horrific decisions designed to hurt the people they view as “less” — the same as rickA does.
With partisan gerrymandering off the table, only racial gerrymandering is left for the courts. But whether lines are drawn to help white, black, asian, latino or any other racial group – it is racial gerrymandering all the way down.
There is no such thing as non-racial gerrymandering. You cannot draw a line which doesn’t help or hurt some candidate (and they all have a skin color).
That means that all gerrymandering is political and is not permitted according to Supreme Court law.
I think the independent state legislature theory may be the correct constitutional law. After all – that is what the constitution says. I guess we will see.
dean says “designed to hurt the people they view as “less””. More mind reading.
Not at all. SImply reading their decisions, republican messages, and your posts.
The QOP isn’t even trying to hide the fact that they want to rig the next election and break the law.
In case that doesn’t work: this is Marchant saying:
In the eyes of the modern right (resident right-wing clown included, as we’ve seen) crime and fraud are OK if they’re done by the right.
Another right-wing fascist speaking outloud what used to be the silent part (still vile, still wrong, but now simply mainstream QOP “thought”).
I submitted my absentee ballot on Wednesday, and there are a bunch of judicial elections, including for the Supreme Court in the State. There was only one election for which there was a challenger. So, the only real option we have is to vote or not vote for a particular judge.
The thing is, unless one is a lawyer, or watches courts very closely, there is no real way to determine who is a good or a bad judge. Yes, there are cases where judges make egregiously bad decisions and give a rapist 6 months suspended, and that’s about the only time a judge will be named in the news. I looked up a few, looked at their records, decided that they are not objectionable and voted for them. But, I realized that for all of the seats I had on my ballot, it would not be a good expenditure of time to do this on each judge.
Perhaps a better system would be to have each Judge subject to a “No” vote at the end of their term, and if they don’t win the referendum a replacement is named by an independent panel.
In many states there are Justices of the Peace, and they do not need to be judges to be elected. They handle small claims up to 10k, municipal infractions and traffic violations, landlord-tenant cases and issues like that. I lived in a very Republican district when I first moved to Phoenix, and there was a crowded field in the primary for the J o P in my precinct for the Republicans but no Democrats chose to run. I was preparing to file for the primary in2018 for the Democrats, and talked to a few J o P’s from other districts and got some support. But by then I had moved to a new precinct (the boundary was only 100′ away from my new house.) I looked into who was doing the J of P in the new precinct and people that knew said he was a good guy, and he is a Democrat.) I decided to not run in the new precinct, since the main reason I had considered running was to get a Democrat on the ballot in a Republican District and help drive turnout.
Okay, and there is that 94K annual salary.
There is a way to determine judges that almost always works. We have a good system in MN for appointing judges. So, an incumbent is usually good. We also have a tradition of people running grudge campaigns against sitting judges. So the challenger is often bad.
So just vote for the incumbent.