Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Justice Stevens' Retirement, Judicial Activism & A Liberal Call To Arms

There are a couple, three reasons why unlike many left-of-center bloggers I don't call out conservatives every time they do a hypocritical turn. For one thing, I'd have little time to write about anything else. For another, it gets repetitious, not to say boring. For yet another, liberals are often just as guilty.

But in the case of judicial activism, I will make an exception. This because the conservative (which is to say Republican) chorus line has reliably tried to tar Sonia Sotomayor and virtually every other non-conservative judicial nominee whose names have been sent up to Capitol Hill by Barack Obama and Bill Clinton before him with that brush.

Hypocrisy comes in many flavors and sizes, but this is a whopper of heart-stopping magnitude when you consider that the current Supreme Court, which includes conservative icons Alito, Scalia, Roberts and the beyond crazy Thomas, has been breathtakingly activist.

How else to explain their rulings giving corporations the same free-speech rights as individuals. Asserting that affirmative action is unconstitutional but not regulating firearms is. That age discrimination is a fig newton of the victims' imaginations. Or that the manufacturers of deadly pharmaceuticals and medical devices can't be sued by the kin of the victims if the Food and Drug Administration approved their use.

This is why . . . drum roll, please . . . the fight to secure the nomination of the successor to Justice Stevens should be a liberal call to arms.

Cartoon by Pat Oliphant/Universal Press Syndicate

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