At what point is “judicial” corruption eliminated?
A brilliant essay that touches on something that most people (and journalists) hardly ever examine thoroughly. A deeply problematic situation for this country.
Usually, when people think of corruption, they imagine government officials taking bribes, selling access or self-dealing at the expense of the people. It is the politician doing favors for someone, who is secretly giving the politician money. It’s not that the act of taking cash for access, for example, is illegal. It is that this sort of self-dealing happens outside of public view. The constituents don’t know that their representative is taking bribes or cutting secret deals at their expense.
That’s why people take offense at this sort of corruption. It makes a mockery of the whole democratic process. The point of representative self-government is for the people to select representatives, who will speak for them. Those representatives then populate the government with people, who have the duty to carry out government functions for the good of the people. If the representatives or bureaucrats are taking bribes and selling favors, it undermines the point of the democratic system.
This sort of corruption, regardless of scale, is petty corruption. The people doing it acknowledge the reason for the political order and they accept that their actions are in violation of that order. They know they are violating the trust placed in them by their fellow citizens. They are simply motivated by the same things that are always behind these sorts of personal failures. They either give in to temptation or they are of low character. Petty corruption is a part of the human condition.
There is another sort of corruption that is far worse. This is when the people in positions of authority no longer respect the spirit of the law. They see the law as nothing but an obstacle course, which they must navigate in order to get what they want. Whether it is the process or the limits, the law is just a puzzle they must defeat. This sort of corruption is a rejection of the spirit of the law and the process created to write and execute the laws. This is the corruption we see in the courts.
There can be no reading of court precedents that would lead this judge to rule that long guns are not protected by the Bill of Rights. The Supreme Court has made sure that clear and legal scholars agree about the intent of the Second Amendment. This woman does not care about the law or the spirit of the law. She is a political fanatic, who sees the law and the political system as obstacles. She stands in opposition to the political order, yet she is allowed to serve as a judge, rotting the system from the inside.
Throughout the system, we see judges make rulings that fly in the face of black letter law and prior precedents. It’s become such a common occurrence, it is just assumed that every consequential case will end up in the Supreme Court, as no one respects the rulings of lower courts. The Ninth Circuit, for example, has been a punchline for decades, because that court is stocked with fanatics and imbeciles, unable to perform their basic duties. All of its rulings are assumed to be flawed.
This situation with the federal courts has become particularly acute after Trump won the 2016 election. No matter what the administration does, a federal judge somewhere rules it is unconstitutional. The reasoning is often so bizarre, it suggests they are intentionally mocking the spirit of the law. These judges are trying to discredit the basis of the system that allows them to be judges. The court no longer respects the spirit of the laws or the political system that creates them
Most Americans, using the old definition of the term, still see the courts as the backstop for democracy. While the courts often make mistakes or give in to the fads of the day, the courts are still seen as the safety valve. It’s why legacy Americans still talk about rights and the rule of law. Despite what they see on their televisions every day, they still think the people on the bench respect the spirit of the constitutional system. That is no longer the case, as the courts are thoroughly and irredeemably corrupt.
Of course, the problem with the courts did not happen overnight. The new elite that coalesced in the middle of the last century lacked a historical attachment to the Anglo-Saxon form of jurisprudence. Instead, they either explicitly rejected that as bourgeois, and therefore illegitimate. Or, they came from a different legal tradition in which judges made and interpreted the law. Either way, the new elite that formed after the war was at odds with the spirit of the American legal and political system.
This corruption became clear in cases like Griswold v. Connecticut and more famously in Roe v. Wade. In both cases, the courts manufactured new law, based on nothing but the whims of the court, but also corrupted the very basis of the legal system. Ever since the courts have been the most important branch of government. The political class now fights for the power to stock the courts with people, who promise to pervert the law in favor of their side at the expense of the other.
We have reached the point now where the judges no longer feel that have any need to respect the spirit of the laws and the system that created them. Every case that goes to the Supreme Court has four votes for or against it, regardless of the issue. The four Progressive fanatics are so predictable, it is just assumed they will rule in favor of their tribe’s wishes. The only question is which “conservative” judge will be selected to fink on his team and side with the orientalists on the bench.
Now we see that the lower courts are in full revolt. U.S. District Judge Josephine Staton, the one who ruled that long guns are not protected by the Second Amendment, no longer cares about the law. She is fully woke, by which is meant fully politicized. She has no respect for the law or the process that form and uphold the law. She and her fellows on the bench are in full spiritual revolt against the system that makes it possible for her to be a federal judge. She is the face of spiritual corruption.
Petty corruption, like a judge taking a bribe, is no threat to the system. A crooked judge can be exposed and his punishment can serve as a reinforcement of the spirit behind the system. Every system needs a rule-breaker once in a while to test the resolve and be an example to everyone. The corruption we see today is a sign that the system has broken down completely. Our elites no longer have any respect for the spirit of the law or the intellectual traditions that are supposedly its foundation.