Author Topic: RIP Ruth  (Read 21109 times)

marty998

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RIP Ruth
« on: September 18, 2020, 05:39:35 PM »
Oh boy. I might be Australian but even I know the significance of this one.

:(
« Last Edit: September 18, 2020, 05:41:37 PM by marty998 »

bloodaxe

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2020, 05:47:08 PM »
What the heck. This was released 5 minutes ago and isn't even on the top of google news yet.

Have you been waiting to post this on the MMM forums?

OtherJen

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2020, 05:59:11 PM »
This is truly a loss for all who love our country.

partgypsy

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2020, 06:02:41 PM »
I so much feel her loss. She was someone I really respected, made the world a better, more just place. Obviously the coming election has even more gravity to it. Rest in peace. May her memory be eternal.

marty998

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2020, 06:09:19 PM »
What the heck. This was released 5 minutes ago and isn't even on the top of google news yet.

Have you been waiting to post this on the MMM forums?

I was browsing here in another thread and it flashed up as breaking news on my TV (Saturday morning here).

Partisan judges is something we are not used to in Australia. The law is generally... the law. Judgements are generally uncoloured by political flavour.

Wasn’t until 5 years ago I started understanding how your system operates means the “who” matters more than the “what” (being the case being judged).

(And also... fuck google news and their refusal to pay news organisations in Australia for the content they steal).
« Last Edit: September 18, 2020, 06:12:32 PM by marty998 »

geekette

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2020, 06:21:42 PM »
Every time I think 2020 can’t get worse...

bloodaxe

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2020, 06:27:44 PM »
What the heck. This was released 5 minutes ago and isn't even on the top of google news yet.

Have you been waiting to post this on the MMM forums?

(And also... fuck google news and their refusal to pay news organisations in Australia for the content they steal).

I don't see how it's stealing. I also don't understand why Australia now requires companies to pay news orgs for linking their stories.

lost_in_the_endless_aisle

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2020, 06:38:49 PM »
I knew something bad was going to happen today when I almost stepped on a 5" long caterpillar. I like most of the SCOTUS judges, including the late Scalia, who of course was quite friendly with RBG. Intelligent people who can disagree on an intellectual and ideological level and remain friends are very good role models.

John Galt incarnate!

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2020, 06:52:42 PM »
Every time I think 2020 can’t get worse...

A titanic Machiavellianism   will soon pervade  the United States Senate.

"Fasten your  seat belts."

« Last Edit: September 18, 2020, 07:08:29 PM by John Galt incarnate! »

Dicey

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2020, 06:53:08 PM »
Oh.

waltworks

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2020, 07:01:59 PM »
Thanks, 2004 Nader voters, now we get to spend 50 years getting back to where we are today.

-W

maisymouser

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2020, 07:03:34 PM »
DH and I are kind of a wreck right now. I am looking at Canadian jobs and locations we could sort of make life work out, for the first semi-serious time ever. Knowing how this is all about to play out.... leaves me without words. I'm 99% sure the GOP will shove in their nominee before the election, and I'm of the opinion that Trump could *very* realistically take this election. I feel as though I can't count on the US to be a place I want to live much longer. It doesn't feel like I can help fix these problems as a born-and-raised American. I feel like I'm losing home.

« Last Edit: September 18, 2020, 07:07:49 PM by maisymouser »

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2020, 07:05:48 PM »
I knew something bad was going to happen today when I almost stepped on a 5" long caterpillar. I like most of the SCOTUS judges, including the late Scalia, who of course was quite friendly with RBG. Intelligent people who can disagree on an intellectual and ideological level and remain friends are very good role models.

Scalia invited RBG to his gun club where he taught her to shoot a shotgun.

Bateaux

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2020, 07:46:07 PM »
Saddle up.  Lots of things will change now.  ACA could go down by the end of the year.  Glad I'm still working and on employer plan. 

scottish

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2020, 07:47:11 PM »
DH and I are kind of a wreck right now. I am looking at Canadian jobs and locations we could sort of make life work out, for the first semi-serious time ever. Knowing how this is all about to play out.... leaves me without words. I'm 99% sure the GOP will shove in their nominee before the election, and I'm of the opinion that Trump could *very* realistically take this election. I feel as though I can't count on the US to be a place I want to live much longer. It doesn't feel like I can help fix these problems as a born-and-raised American. I feel like I'm losing home.

Don't do it.

It's a socialist hell up here.    Private health care is mostly banned, we have federally funded pandemic support that will bankrupt the country and the sheeple are giving up their liberties and conforming to public health recommendations about COVID.   Nobody is allowed to have a pistol for self defense and our conservative political parties are a bit to the left of the Democrats.

marty998

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2020, 07:48:16 PM »
What the heck. This was released 5 minutes ago and isn't even on the top of google news yet.

Have you been waiting to post this on the MMM forums?

(And also... fuck google news and their refusal to pay news organisations in Australia for the content they steal).

I don't see how it's stealing. I also don't understand why Australia now requires companies to pay news orgs for linking their stories.

Foaming my own off topic thread already (how bad is that)

Google steals the news story and put it on its own page. A reader doesn’t fully click through from google to the news site when they read it on google... if you look at the web address you are still on www.google...  even though it looks like you’re on the news site.

It is most definitely content that should be paid for.

Travis

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2020, 10:06:31 PM »
And McConnell is already preparing for a replacement vote. When pointed out the hypocrisy of holding the vote when he stopped Obama from doing the same, he said "this is different, it's a Republican."

Abe

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2020, 11:30:37 PM »
I hope none of you are planning on being poor or sick anymore. If not, find a new country!

Dee

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2020, 07:41:56 AM »
What an incredible person. The world is much worse off without her. She'd come through so many illnesses (or so it seemed to me), I hadn't been paying attention to her health and this caught me by surprise. Her legacy is immense.

G-dog

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2020, 07:47:30 AM »
😔😭🤬

GuitarStv

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #20 on: September 19, 2020, 07:57:23 AM »
So, besides making abortions illegal and overturning the ACA, what do you think the long term implications of having yet another extreme right supreme court justice will be?

G-dog

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #21 on: September 19, 2020, 09:05:44 AM »
So, besides making abortions illegal and overturning the ACA, what do you think the long term implications of having yet another extreme right supreme court justice will be?

More civil rights exceptions for religious groups and police and anyone else that asks (unless they are brown or non-Christians).

Undermining any social support (Medicare, SNAP, school lunches, social security ...)


OtherJen

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #22 on: September 19, 2020, 09:19:01 AM »
So, besides making abortions illegal and overturning the ACA, what do you think the long term implications of having yet another extreme right supreme court justice will be?

More civil rights exceptions for religious groups and police and anyone else that asks (unless they are brown or non-Christians).

Undermining any social support (Medicare, SNAP, school lunches, social security ...)

Same-sex marriage will no longer be federally recognized (a right-wing group will challenge it immediately on religious grounds).

bacchi

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2020, 09:28:29 AM »
Long term? The SC will expand to 11 or more Justices.

bloodaxe

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2020, 10:19:45 AM »
I think everyone is making a mountain out of a molehill. The supreme court justices seem fairly impartial.

Kavanaugh and Gorsuch have frequently voted against the other conservatives (Thomas and Alito).

Gorsuch voted that companies can't descriminate against LGBTQ people https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altitude_Express,_Inc._v._Zarda.

Kavanaugh voted with liberal justices that Texas can't execute a man with mental disabilities. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/02/19/supreme-court-bobby-james-moore-death-penalty-case/2914569002/

Both Gorsuch and Kavanaugh voted that Manhattan is allowed to access Trump's tax records, voting with liberals and against conservatives.

jeninco

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2020, 12:18:42 PM »
I think everyone is making a mountain out of a molehill. The supreme court justices seem fairly impartial.

Kavanaugh and Gorsuch have frequently voted against the other conservatives (Thomas and Alito).

Gorsuch voted that companies can't descriminate against LGBTQ people https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altitude_Express,_Inc._v._Zarda.

Kavanaugh voted with liberal justices that Texas can't execute a man with mental disabilities. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/02/19/supreme-court-bobby-james-moore-death-penalty-case/2914569002/

Both Gorsuch and Kavanaugh voted that Manhattan is allowed to access Trump's tax records, voting with liberals and against conservatives.

As a female person who has the insane idea that I should have the right to physical and financial autonomy, along with equal pay for equal work and protections from being fired because of my gender (which I have been), I have no confidence whatsoever that the existing supreme court, plus whomever McConnell rams through will do anything whatsoever to protect my rights. Much less those of people who are not white, or the right kind of christian, or straight, or cisgendered. 

How nice to be you, unconcerned about trivialities such as these.

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #26 on: September 19, 2020, 12:33:11 PM »
If worst comes to worst, Democratic Presidents with a Democratic Congress could simply refuse to enforce the Supreme Court's rulings. It worked for Andrew Jackson back in the day.

bacchi

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #27 on: September 19, 2020, 02:23:17 PM »
If worst comes to worst, Democratic Presidents with a Democratic Congress could simply refuse to enforce the Supreme Court's rulings. It worked for Andrew Jackson back in the day.

Or impeach.

American GenX

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #28 on: September 19, 2020, 02:48:15 PM »
Saddle up.  Lots of things will change now.  ACA could go down by the end of the year.  Glad I'm still working and on employer plan.

Indeed, I had pushed off my FIRE date a couple times now to about 2 years from my original plan due to ACA concerns.  The ACA was on shaky ground before, but this really tilts things in the direction of overturning the ACA.

I was expressing my concern about this possibility in the ACA thread months ago:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/what-comes-after-the-aca/msg2588195/#msg2588195

This is pretty sad and could shatter my last hopes of retiring early or at least delay it for even more years.  :(

redbirdfan

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #29 on: September 19, 2020, 03:05:35 PM »
I
Quote
think everyone is making a mountain out of a molehill. The supreme court justices seem fairly impartial.

Kavanaugh and Gorsuch have frequently voted against the other conservatives (Thomas and Alito).

Gorsuch voted that companies can't descriminate against LGBTQ people https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altitude_Express,_Inc._v._Zarda.

Kavanaugh voted with liberal justices that Texas can't execute a man with mental disabilities. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/02/19/supreme-court-bobby-james-moore-death-penalty-case/2914569002/

Both Gorsuch and Kavanaugh voted that Manhattan is allowed to access Trump's tax records, voting with liberals and against conservatives.

It was always possible to get one conservative defector depending on the topic.  You have to factor in both the loss of RBG's vote AND the addition of another conservative vote.  You would now need two conservative defectors which isn't likely.  Defcon 1 level freak out is warranted for the left.

Quote
So, besides making abortions illegal and overturning the ACA, what do you think the long term implications of having yet another extreme right supreme court justice will be?

Republicans will move to seat the new Justice before the next President is inaugurated.  I predict Barrett will be on the Court by mid-January.  This will destroy the last vestiges of the Supreme Court being a neutral and non-political branch of government.  The Supreme Court was already dealing with issues of legitimacy regarding Merrick Garland's nomination. Now the Republicans will do a complete 180 and move to seat the next Justice even closer to the election.  Even worse, they would still move to seat the Justice in the lame duck session if Trump lost the presidential election and/or if the Republicans lost control of the Senate.  This will cause a groundswell on the left (assuming Biden wins the election) to take a more scorched earth approach to politics.  You will hear louder calls for Democrats to eliminate the filibuster, pack the court, eliminate the electoral college, add DC and Puerto Rico as states, etc.  You will have a President who lost the popular vote appoint 3/9 Justices.  Republicans have only won the popular vote once in the last five presidential elections.  The list of potential nominees will be far to the right of the country as a whole.  The make up of the Supreme Court will be drastically more conservative than the nation.  This may result in the proverbial problem of the dog catching the car. 

Short-term it could be a sh!t show if the new Justice has to make a ruling on any election-related case.  Trump is gearing up for court battles related to voting by mail, etc.  I'm not sure how those cases will play out if we end up with a Bush v. Gore scenario.  It only takes 4 Justices to decide to hear a case.  The loss of RBG means that the liberal spectrum of the Court cannot force cases to be heard.  That's a big deal. 

The long-term effects will be the erosion of the legitimacy of the Supreme Court and a huge disparity in the "rights" of US citizens by state.  Roe v. Wade won't be overturned - but it will be gutted in red states.  Religion will be allowed as an end-run around state and federal law.  Gerrymandering will go unchecked.  State legislatures and gubernatorial races will be more important than ever.  A likely side effect is that Republican support among the younger generations will plummet, the country will shift more to the left due to changing demographics and over the next few election cycles the parties will become more extreme.

I prefer a more conservative court, but I would move to protect the Court's legitimacy and general notions of fairness by letting the winner of the election make the nomination. 



PDXTabs

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #30 on: September 19, 2020, 03:10:30 PM »
If worst comes to worst, Democratic Presidents with a Democratic Congress could simply refuse to enforce the Supreme Court's rulings. It worked for Andrew Jackson back in the day.

Or impeach.

Or pack the court. I think that packing the court would be the least politically and legally wrought, personally.

Scotland2016

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #31 on: September 19, 2020, 03:22:07 PM »
@jeninco But... the existing Supreme Court just protected the rights of LGBTQ people in the workplace this June. The vote was 6-3, with a Trump nominee writing the majority opinion.

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #32 on: September 19, 2020, 04:12:08 PM »

Or pack the court. I think that packing the court would be the least politically and legally wrought, personally.

To put it mildly, another attempt to pack the Supreme Court would be exceedingly controversial. Much worse, if successful it would vitiate the principle of stare decisis  that provides stability, predictability, and reliance of the great body of fundamental, constitutional law   that constitutes  America's  jurisprudential foundation.


"An interpretation [of the fundamental law] to be changed with each change of administration" would eliminate  the rule of law.


In 1937 the Senate Judiciary Committee issued its Adverse Report that resoundingly rejected FDR's Judicial Reorganization Plan also known as his "Court-packing scheme."


Judicial Reorganization Plan


Senate Judiciary Committee Adverse Report  June 7, 1937

[The Judicial Reorganization Plan] would subjugate the courts to the will of Congress and the President and thereby destroy the independence of the judiciary, the only certain shield of individual rights.

It contains the germ of a system of centralized administration of law that would enable an executive so minded to send his judges into every judicial district in the land to sit in judgment on controversies between the government and the citizen.

It points the way to the evasion of the Constitution and established the method whereby the people may be deprived of their right to pass upon all amendments of the fundamental law.

It stands now before the country, acknowledged by its proponents as a plan to force judicial interpretation of the Constitution, a proposal that violates every sacred tradition of American democracy.

Under the form of the Constitution it seeks to do that which is unconstitutional.

Its ultimate operation would be to make this government one of men rather than one of law, and its practical operation would be to make the Constitution what the executive or legislative branches of the government choose to say it is -- an interpretation to be changed with each change of administration.

It is a measure, which should be so emphatically rejected that its parallel will never again be presented to the free representatives of the free people of America.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2020, 04:43:14 PM by John Galt incarnate! »

ysette9

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #33 on: September 19, 2020, 04:54:39 PM »
I listened to this interview on Fresh Air months ago that argues that the Supreme Court has been on a 50-year trend towards being more conservative, favoring the big guy over the little guy. I think the idealistic view is that it is politically neutral and an independent arm of government, but I have growing doubts. It feels like whoever replaces the legend RBG is going to keep up this trend of moving the Supreme Court further and further away from a tool we the individual people can count on to protect us.


https://www.npr.org/2020/02/24/808843704/supreme-inequality-argues-that-america-s-top-court-has-become-right-wing

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #34 on: September 19, 2020, 05:53:11 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

John Galt incarnate!

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #35 on: September 19, 2020, 06:08:05 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?


bacchi

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #36 on: September 19, 2020, 07:31:33 PM »

Or pack the court. I think that packing the court would be the least politically and legally wrought, personally.

To put it mildly, another attempt to pack the Supreme Court would be exceedingly controversial. Much worse, if successful it would vitiate the principle of stare decisis  that provides stability, predictability, and reliance of the great body of fundamental, constitutional law   that constitutes  America's  jurisprudential foundation.

The doctrine of stare decisis is not an "inexorable command."* Sometimes you gotta toss out "erroneous precedents."**

Adding to what redbirdfan wrote above, a 6-3 Court will be decidedly more conservative than the population at-large. Given the lifelong appointments of the Justices, there are only a handful of ways to counter "Constitutional" decisions made about abortion and LBGT rights and Dreamers. Congress could either 1) Impeach a few Justices; or 2) Add more Justices.

The downside of not changing the makeup of the Court -- trying to force a younger and more liberal demographic to agree with out-of-touch evangelicals -- is even worse. It would tear the country apart. This is especially true if the 6-3 Court decides in favor of Trump in several election related cases.



* Kavanaugh, Ramos v. Louisiana
** Ibid
« Last Edit: September 19, 2020, 07:35:40 PM by bacchi »

ysette9

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2020, 08:08:44 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.
I don’t disagree with you, but I don’t see a path to doing that that doesn’t involve chaos on a wide scale. The current system rewards a few with great power and money and they are clearly very good at keeping themselves rich and in power. Americans are so invested in the “American dream” that they don’t ant to change the system because they dream about the highly unlikely chance they will become rich and profit from the status quo.

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #38 on: September 19, 2020, 08:24:43 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.
I don’t disagree with you, but I don’t see a path to doing that that doesn’t involve chaos on a wide scale. The current system rewards a few with great power and money and they are clearly very good at keeping themselves rich and in power. Americans are so invested in the “American dream” that they don’t ant to change the system because they dream about the highly unlikely chance they will become rich and profit from the status quo.

Chaos is necessary sometimes and as Thomas Jefferson said "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." The average Western European or Canadian lives a much easier life than the average American with very little worry about their health or retirement. The typical American isn't doing as well as all of us on this forum. They are suffering. The majority of the country is ruled by the minority in every significant aspect of their lives. Peaceful protest hasn't gotten any results at all over the past twenty years, so we have already seen the fringe move to more aggressive tactics to get what they want. I fully expect a lot more of that to rapidly happen in this country.

bloodaxe

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2020, 08:37:05 PM »
I think everyone is making a mountain out of a molehill. The supreme court justices seem fairly impartial.

Kavanaugh and Gorsuch have frequently voted against the other conservatives (Thomas and Alito).

Gorsuch voted that companies can't descriminate against LGBTQ people https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altitude_Express,_Inc._v._Zarda.

Kavanaugh voted with liberal justices that Texas can't execute a man with mental disabilities. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/02/19/supreme-court-bobby-james-moore-death-penalty-case/2914569002/

Both Gorsuch and Kavanaugh voted that Manhattan is allowed to access Trump's tax records, voting with liberals and against conservatives.

As a female person who has the insane idea that I should have the right to physical and financial autonomy, along with equal pay for equal work and protections from being fired because of my gender (which I have been), I have no confidence whatsoever that the existing supreme court, plus whomever McConnell rams through will do anything whatsoever to protect my rights. Much less those of people who are not white, or the right kind of christian, or straight, or cisgendered. 

How nice to be you, unconcerned about trivialities such as these.

Did you mean to reply to me? Your comment doesn't address anything I said.

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #40 on: September 19, 2020, 08:39:28 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

Well, first of all, the Electoral College would be dropped. States can vote for state governments any way they wish as long as it is democratic, but the vote for the Presidency would be done by popular vote. No more outsized power to little rural states who shouldn't have it. Another good change would be to change the language in the 2nd Amendment to say that if you want to use military-grade firearms then you need to be enrolled members of your state's official militia. No more Uncle Elmer playing army over a case of Keystone out behind his trailer. Another good change would be to institute single-payer Universal Health Care for all American citizens regardless of age from birth so the USA can match what people take for granted in Western Europe and Canada. It would be written into the Constitution so there's no question of it and it can't be legally removed by the Supreme Court. Also, all Supreme Court justices are appointed for terms of office of only ten years instead of life. Also, instant runoff balloting will be used for all federal elections, which would permanently break the two party system and allow people to vote their conscience at all times.

OzzieandHarriet

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #41 on: September 19, 2020, 09:48:20 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

Well, first of all, the Electoral College would be dropped. States can vote for state governments any way they wish as long as it is democratic, but the vote for the Presidency would be done by popular vote. No more outsized power to little rural states who shouldn't have it. Another good change would be to change the language in the 2nd Amendment to say that if you want to use military-grade firearms then you need to be enrolled members of your state's official militia. No more Uncle Elmer playing army over a case of Keystone out behind his trailer. Another good change would be to institute single-payer Universal Health Care for all American citizens regardless of age from birth so the USA can match what people take for granted in Western Europe and Canada. It would be written into the Constitution so there's no question of it and it can't be legally removed by the Supreme Court. Also, all Supreme Court justices are appointed for terms of office of only ten years instead of life. Also, instant runoff balloting will be used for all federal elections, which would permanently break the two party system and allow people to vote their conscience at all times.

Great ideas!

sixwings

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #42 on: September 19, 2020, 10:30:16 PM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

Well, first of all, the Electoral College would be dropped. States can vote for state governments any way they wish as long as it is democratic, but the vote for the Presidency would be done by popular vote. No more outsized power to little rural states who shouldn't have it. Another good change would be to change the language in the 2nd Amendment to say that if you want to use military-grade firearms then you need to be enrolled members of your state's official militia. No more Uncle Elmer playing army over a case of Keystone out behind his trailer. Another good change would be to institute single-payer Universal Health Care for all American citizens regardless of age from birth so the USA can match what people take for granted in Western Europe and Canada. It would be written into the Constitution so there's no question of it and it can't be legally removed by the Supreme Court. Also, all Supreme Court justices are appointed for terms of office of only ten years instead of life. Also, instant runoff balloting will be used for all federal elections, which would permanently break the two party system and allow people to vote their conscience at all times.

also campaign finance limits, no corporation donations and elimination of super PACS.

seattlecyclone

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #43 on: September 20, 2020, 12:23:44 AM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

I'd go for a few broad points of emphasis.

1) Rebalancing the power between state and federal governments. America is a very diverse nation in so many ways. This diversity includes diversity of political opinions on a regional basis. I think most of us would be much happier with our government if more political decisions were made at the state and local level where those decisions are more likely to reflect the opinions of our immediate community. A clarification of the interstate commerce clause could be particularly helpful in this area. A century ago we passed the 18th Amendment because Congress's pre-existing powers were not understood to include the power to prohibit alcohol nationwide. Over the ensuing decades decisions such as Wickard v. Filburn greatly expanded the meaning of "interstate commerce" to encompass essentially all commercial activity, and so Congress was later able to ban other drugs (and enact numerous other regulations pertaining to commercial transactions that don't cross state lines) without seeking a Constitutional amendment. I don't think this was wise and would like to rein in this type of behavior, bringing more decision-making power much closer to the people.

2) Ensuring more democratic representation in federal institutions. I wouldn't necessarily go so far as to scrap the electoral college and the senate, but I would smooth out the effects that population imbalances create in these institutions. In the first US census the biggest state had about 12 times the population of the smallest. That difference grew to 66-fold by 2010, and has increased a bit since then. To reduce the outsized influence that small states have, I would propose two reforms. First, double or triple the size of the House of Representatives. This would reduce the weighting of the two senators per state in the electoral vote totals. Second, allow large states to divide themselves into smaller states without Congressional approval, so long as the new states were each a certain multiple (maybe 5-10x) of the smallest state. If California or Texas want to remain one huge entity I won't stand in their way, but they shouldn't have to get approval from Wyoming and Rhode Island to divide themselves into entities that will be much more populous than either. In this same topic of more democratic representation, I believe all citizens deserve to have voting representation in Congress. To that end I would grant US territories a quick path to statehood if they want it, and grant them voting representation in Congress in the interim. I think it's also worth considering allocating a few seats in the House to citizens living abroad, as France has done.

3) Criminal justice reform. A lot of the Bill of Rights is aimed at ensuring fair justice by establishing jury trials and various other rights relating to trials. In current times a very small fraction of cases ever makes it to trial because of plea bargaining. Exercising your right to a trial, demanding that the prosecution lay out its evidence against you in front of an impartial judge and jury, should not be a huge risk that is likely to cost you years of your freedom. A right that the state will severely punish you for exercising is no right at all. And yet with the current plea bargaining system this is exactly what happens. Given a big enough disparity between sentences offered at the plea stage and sentences imposed after a guilty verdict at trial, accepting the plea bargain can be the rational thing to do even if you are completely innocent. I would add an amendment limiting maximum sentences at trial to a very small multiple of what was offered prior to trial. No more than 2x for sure. Trials are expensive. Having more of them is a feature, not a bug. We have the most prisoners in the world. Taking away someone's freedom should be expensive, something that a prosecutor and judge have every reason to avoid if at all possible. Let's make it so. There are also huge racial disparities in criminal punishment that need to be addressed, but I have no concrete proposals here other than to listen to what people of color, particularly Black people, suggest.

4) "Renewing our vows." Almost no American citizen alive today had any influence into whether their state would be a State of the Union, subject to the Constitution thereof. The only exceptions are a few thousand senior citizens who were registered voters in Alaska or Hawaii back in 1959. The status quo bias built into the Constitutional amendment process is very strong. If the 2nd Amendment didn't already exist and was being proposed for a vote today, there's no way in hell it would earn the requisite two-thirds vote in both houses of Congress and support from 38 state legislatures. And yet right now because it was ratified by 11 all-white, all-male state legislatures 228 years ago, keeping it in place merely requires the support of at least one-third of either house of Congress or at least 13 state legislatures. That's quite a striking difference! I would consider requiring some sort of re-ratification of the Constitution once in a generation. If the document as it exists doesn't have broad enough support across the nation, we should force ourselves to make changes until it does.

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #44 on: September 20, 2020, 05:02:21 AM »
Make voting day a Saturday or federal holiday. Election laws should maximize participation rather than give avenues to torpedoing the entire process. Its 2020 and we're still in love with standing in a queue and putting a piece of paper in a box.  We have 50 different sets of election laws and no standardization. We put orders of magnitude more effort into denying ballots than we do in finding ways to cast them. I expect gerrymandering is to blame, but politicians seem to revel in making voting difficult. Make elections entirely publicly financed. Spending money is individual choice/speech until someone else comes along with far deeper pockets than you. The same goes for lobbying and campaign contributors getting government jobs. They're buying laws/candidates and bidding for jobs they're grossly unqualified for. Candidates should be ranked ordered rather than winner take all between the two parties that have a lock on everything we just proposed.

I like the republic and the split we have between federal and state power. I'm still not convinced a popular vote for president is the way to go. I dislike 10 big cities deciding the presidency just as much as I dislike a one horse town doing the same. That said, our system was designed as a balance of competing interests and the guys who designed it didn't envision the mess we're in now.

GuitarStv

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #45 on: September 20, 2020, 07:38:41 AM »
How about declaring women to have equal rights as men?

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #46 on: September 20, 2020, 08:03:42 AM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

Well, first of all, the Electoral College would be dropped. States can vote for state governments any way they wish as long as it is democratic, but the vote for the Presidency would be done by popular vote. No more outsized power to little rural states who shouldn't have it. Another good change would be to change the language in the 2nd Amendment to say that if you want to use military-grade firearms then you need to be enrolled members of your state's official militia. No more Uncle Elmer playing army over a case of Keystone out behind his trailer. Another good change would be to institute single-payer Universal Health Care for all American citizens regardless of age from birth so the USA can match what people take for granted in Western Europe and Canada. It would be written into the Constitution so there's no question of it and it can't be legally removed by the Supreme Court. Also, all Supreme Court justices are appointed for terms of office of only ten years instead of life. Also, instant runoff balloting will be used for all federal elections, which would permanently break the two party system and allow people to vote their conscience at all times.
You’ve got my vote

waltworks

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #47 on: September 20, 2020, 08:27:06 AM »
If you really want these things, you should be thinking about moving to a swing state.

It's actually something that has entered our thinking process if we ever move. I'd like my vote to matter (in UT it doesn't).

-W

OtherJen

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #48 on: September 20, 2020, 08:29:32 AM »
I hate to say it, but the way things are going, it may be necessary to re-visit the US Constitution. The system is extremely broken right now. The French have had five republics. Most republics have to reestablish multiple times over the course of their history.

If you were the chairperson of the Committee to Reform the Constitution what reforms, including new amendments and repeal of existing amendments (if any)  would you propose?

Well, first of all, the Electoral College would be dropped. States can vote for state governments any way they wish as long as it is democratic, but the vote for the Presidency would be done by popular vote. No more outsized power to little rural states who shouldn't have it. Another good change would be to change the language in the 2nd Amendment to say that if you want to use military-grade firearms then you need to be enrolled members of your state's official militia. No more Uncle Elmer playing army over a case of Keystone out behind his trailer. Another good change would be to institute single-payer Universal Health Care for all American citizens regardless of age from birth so the USA can match what people take for granted in Western Europe and Canada. It would be written into the Constitution so there's no question of it and it can't be legally removed by the Supreme Court. Also, all Supreme Court justices are appointed for terms of office of only ten years instead of life. Also, instant runoff balloting will be used for all federal elections, which would permanently break the two party system and allow people to vote their conscience at all times.

A+ to all of this. Sane and necessary reforms.

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Re: RIP Ruth
« Reply #49 on: September 20, 2020, 11:33:33 AM »

Congress could either 1) Impeach a few Justices; or 2) Add more Justices.



A Supreme Court justice's opinion or dissent, or concurrence in either, must be much more than widely unpopular to suffice as justifiable grounds for their impeachment.

 If the opinion or dissent were a shockingly  egregious, completely unsupportable deviation from the  settled jurisprudence at issue the House of Representatives might commence   impeachment.

For example, suppose the legislature of the State of X established the "Church of the State of X" and somehow, challenges to the establishment of the Church eventually came before the Supreme Court.

 If a justice supported the utterly and facially   unconstitutional  establishment of the Church their support would justify and might spur their impeachment.