JABbering Stooge

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Messages from the Reality-challenged Zone

Amazingly enough, I got a response to my May 13th post. Someone calling him/herself "p-bs-watcher" wrote:

Is Judge Bataillon so stupid as to believe that anyone would buy his argument, or is he so stupid as to believe it himself? See Laws Are Illegal

Alright, since you were kind enough to link to your argument on the subject, allow me to offer a point-by-point rebuttal.

Federal District Court Judge Joseph Bataillon has rendered a landmark decision.

I would say that that's painfully obvious, except for the fact that San Francisco County Superior Court Judge Richard Kramer did exactly the same for California's gay marriage amendment on March 14th of this year.

It is either a monument to judicial stupidity or to brazen sophistry depending on how much one credits the intelligence of the judge.

Actually, it is neither. The judge correctly cited prior precedent and the appropriate Amendments to the Constitution in this case. But then again, this doesn't surprise me - any time a judge issues a ruling that the right doesn't like, they tend to resort to this sort of name calling and ad hominem invective.

Professor Volokh has completed a detailed demolition of the ruling here, and is translated for the general public here.

I will give a "detailed demolition" of Volokh's "detailed demolition of the ruling" in my next post. Meanwhile, the "translation" into Joe Sixpack-ese is little more than the same old "judges who disagree with me are complete and utter morons" rot that one would expect from the thousand-word projectile vomit Ann Coulter passes off as a weekly calumny...er...column.

The most flagrantly absurd finding among many is that the Nebraska State Constitutional amendment violated the First Amendment rights of its opponents to propose legislation because "The knowledge that any such proposed legislation violates the Nebraska Constitution chills or inhibits advocacy of that legislation, as well as impinging on freedom to join together in pursuit of those ends."

Because the amendment to Nebraska's Constitution unduly impinges on homosexuals' right "to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." As has been our experience as a country, arbitrarily limiting the freedoms of a group often has bad, unintended consequences (as in the case of Prohibition, where we saw the rise of organized crime - Al Capone, for example), or, when "accompanied by an invidious or irrational animus against a certain group," as noted in the footnotes of the ruling, is inherently antithetical to the ideals of the Founding Fathers as outlined in both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. We're looking for "liberty for all," not "liberty for some" here - and THAT is the basis of the First Amendment angle to the ruling.

Only the uninitiated would have been so gauche as to think that was the purpose of laws and constitutions.

Only the uninitiated would have been so gauche as to think that First Amendment concerns were the only things cited by Judge Bataillon in striking down the Nebraska State Constitution's amendment. Remember, the Fourteenth Amendment states that "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." Nowhere in the text of that is an exception made for State Constitutions - thus statutes in state constitutions are as subject to the same federal-level "constitutional smell test" as any other state law. Unless you'd like to try to argue that State constitutions are to be held in higher regard than the U.S. Constitution, but then you'd be running afoul of Clause 2 of Article VI of the U.S. Constitution, which states that the U.S. Constitution "shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding."

Translating into Joe Sixpack-ese, the clause reads as follows:

The U.S. Constitution "is the ultimate authority on valid laws. Judges at all levels must abide by the Constitution, even if a State's laws or elements of the State Constitution contradicts it."

Judge Bataillon has discovered what the rest of us had missed for over two hundred years. The first amendment trumps all.

All he did was interpret the law (which is the job description of the Judicial Branch - read the Constitution some time; it's obvious you could use a refresher) and yet you want people to believe that he was pulling laws out of his butt. Sorry, but you'll have to do better than that if you want to convince me.

Laws are illegal. Constitutions are unconstitutional.

Only those that don't pass the federal-level Constitutional smell test, as mandated by the Fourteenth Amendment.

In the case of the U.S. Supreme Court, I argued that one must respect their expertise and intelligence, and therefore conclude that any outrageous ruling is intentional with malice aforethought. I can make no similar contention with respect to this court. I am forced to join my betters in the Blue State elites to question the capabilities of this flyover country rube. Is he so stupid as to believe that anyone would buy his argument, or is he so stupid as to believe it himself? I am sure it is all for the greater good.

Okay, now you're just descending to the level of Tom DeLay and John Cornyn - flinging ideological feces at judges whose rulings you disagree with.

In the immortal words of Anne Robinson: "You are the weakest link, goodbye!"

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