Posts Tagged ‘SCOTUS’

Bean-counting Catholic justices

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

faustaBack in the Middle Ages, theologians would count how many angels could dance on the head of a pin; now the Left is Bean-counting Catholic justices.

Read my latest at Da Tech Guy Blog.

While you’re at it, listen to last night’s podcast, Are Liberals Patriotic? I was Rick Moran’s guest.

Argentina: Cristina can’t pay up . . .

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

So she keeps looking for a settlement:
As posted earlier, the SCOTUS not only ruled that Argentina can’t make payments on its restructured debt unless it also pays the holdouts, but also that the creditors can get access to a wide number of bank records to locate financial assets overseas that they might be able to seize as compensation.

Cristina Fernandez gave a speech about “vulture funds”, and came up with this (emphasis added),
Argentina Wants to Settle With Holdout Creditors
Argentine President Cristina Kirchner said her government wants to reach a settlement with a small group of creditors suing to collect on defaulted debt, but only if U.S. courts create the right conditions for talks.

Let me translate this into plain English: Cristina’s saying that she’ll not abide by the terms of the contract upheld by the SCOTUS, but instead that she’ll agree to pay less when U.S. courts abide by Argentinian law, which is exactly what she’s been saying all along.

In her annual Flag Day speech, Mrs. Kirchner said Argentina would enter talks with the help of U.S. courts. “We only ask they create negotiating conditions that are just and in accordance with the Argentine constitution, laws and contracts we signed with 92.4% of our creditors,” Mrs. Kirchner said, referring to investors who accepted the restructured bonds.

There are fools out there who saw this as being conciliatory, and

The country’s restructured bonds jumped during Mrs. Kirchner’s speech on Friday, nearly wiping out their losses for the week.

These same fools probably bought some Ecuadorian bonds, too.

high apple pie
In the sky hopes

Inimical to Cristina’s thinking, the fact is that

Humiliating as that may be to the Argentinas of the world, no one would lend them money without contractually guaranteed recourse to a venue where the rule of law is well established.

Axel Kicillof, the economy minister,

dismissed the options of full payment or outright default as unthinkable. He said that the government would attempt to reroute its exchanged bonds from New York to Argentina, away from the reach of the United States’ courts. That would allow Argentina to continue paying the creditors it struck deals with in 2005 and 2010, without paying the holdouts.

“Transferring the bonds to local law would be very difficult at the street level,” warns Henry Weisburg at Shearman & Sterling, a law firm. First Argentina must convince a majority of holders of the exchanged bonds to agree to the swap. This task may be insurmountable given that many of the current creditors are bound by rules restricting them from holding assets under foreign jurisdiction.

Carrion trade
Even if Argentina were to succeed in persuading holders of the exchanged bonds to take the plunge, any intermediary that helped facilitate the rerouting risks being held in contempt of the New York courts. Argentina would thus need to find an intermediary that is not, and has no desire to be, subject to New York law. Lastly, Argentina would need to convince Bank of New York Mellon, its current trustee, to release information about the bondholders to its new intermediary. That could put the bank into contempt; it has already said it “will comply with any court order by which it is deemed bound.”

The Hedge Funds Aren’t Crying for Argentina, but they’d be wise to hold off the celebration until they actually get paid:

The offer to negotiate comes less than two weeks before Argentina has to make the next interest payment on its restructured bonds, which U.S. courts have said the country isn’t allowed to pay unless it also pays the holdout creditors. If Argentina misses the interest payment on June 30, the country sinks into technical default and will have another 30-day grace period to avoid an outright default.

In other LatAm debt stories, Guatemalan bonds are looking bad, too.

Sing it, guys,


Argentina: SCOTUS didn’t take the case . . . yet

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Not surprisingly, the Supreme Court of the United States is not adding Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital Ltd., the defaulted bonds case, to their current docket:
Supreme Court Takes No Action on Argentina Bond Case
Appeal Isn’t Added to Docket; Justices Could Still Take Up Case Later

If the high court follows past practices, the justices may ask the U.S. Solicitor General to submit a brief expressing the Obama administration’s views on whether the court should hear the case. That process could take months. The Supreme Court has taken that approach in past cases stemming from Argentina’s economic crisis.

The court also could choose to reject Argentina’s appeal, especially because parts of the case are still pending in a New York federal appeals court. Argentina would be able to file a new petition to the Supreme Court when that case is finalized in the lower court.

In related litigation, the appeals court in New York. In August issued another ruling, upholding a lower court’s order that Argentina pay $1.33 billion to the holdouts. The court stayed its decision pending Supreme Court review. Argentina also has asked the appeals court to reconsider its decision.

Bottom line: anyone invisting on Argentinian bonds at this point may be credulous enough to buy into the Nicaraguan Canal.


The wasted 1-day summit

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

In case you missed it, yesterday a summit took place between the three largest economies of North America: Canada, Mexico, and the USA. You would think this would be news as of itself, since it involves membership on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free-trade zone.

Instead, Obama diverted the press conference into the issue of Obamacare and the SCOTUS, by cautioning the justices, to whom he referred to as “an unelected group of people,”

“I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,”

Video:

This was an attack on the court’s standing and even its integrity in a backhanded way

It is outrageous enough that the president’s protest was inaccurate. What in the world is he talking about when he asserts the law was passed by “a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress”? The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act barely squeaked through the Congress. In the Senate it escaped a filibuster by but a hair. The vote was so tight in the house — 219 to 212 — that the leadership went through byzantine maneuvers to get the measure to the president’s desk. No Republicans voted for it when it came up in the House, and the drive to repeal the measure began the day after Mr. Obama signed the measure.

It is the aspersions the President cast on the Supreme Court, though, that take the cake. We speak of the libel about the court being an “unelected group of people” who might “somehow overturn a duly constituted and passed law.” This libel was dealt with more than two centuries ago in the newspaper column known as 78 Federalist and written by Alexander Hamilton. It is the essay in which Hamilton, a big proponent of federal power, famously described the Court as “the weakest of the three departments of power.” It argued that the people could never be endangered by the court — so long as the judiciary “remains truly distinct from both the legislature and the Executive.”

It was precisely the separation of the courts from the other two branches, Hamilton argued, that gives the court its legitimacy.

With his statement, President Obama Goes on Record Opposing Marbury v. Madison.

Q&O:

it isn’t the job of the Supreme Court to do the job of Congress. Instead, its job is to determine whether or not what Congress has done is compliant with the limits the Constitution places on it. That’s it. There is nothing which requires the Supreme Court to “fix” laws that Congress has passed.

Ruth Marcus:

Obama’s assault on “an unelected group of people” stopped me cold. Because, as the former constitutional law professor certainly understands, it is the essence of our governmental system to vest in the court the ultimate power to decide the meaning of the constitution. Even if, as the president said, it means overturning “a duly constituted and passed law.”

So the joint press conference with Felipe Calderón and Stephen Harper accomplished…what?
1. Obama’s going after the Supreme Court as his bête noire, knowing they cannot respond.

2. It showed that the President needs a remedial course in judicial review.

and,
3. It demonstrated to Mexico and Canada that they are mere side ornaments when it comes to Obama’s priorities: Critical issues that involve the three countries count for nothing.

Why is the TPP critical now?

Canadian officials have said that they have been willing to put everything up for negotiation—including, some officials say, dairy products and other issues such as a U.S. push for Canada to increase intellectual-property protections.

TPP joins a list of recent points of tension in the world’s largest trade relationship. Canadians were angered by “Buy America” provisions in last year’s U.S. stimulus plan, new surcharges imposed on Canadians traveling to the U.S. and regulatory delays in approval for the Keystone pipeline, a massive project to move crude from the oil sands of Alberta to U.S. refineries.

But hey, after his next election Obama will have more flexibility.

As a side note,
When you read the full transcript, note the condescending tone towards Calderón (“Felipe, Stephen and I are proud to welcome you here today”).

UPDATE,
Don’t miss Judidical activism for me, but not for thee


Elena Kagan, Cap and Trade, and John Hawkins

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

In today’s podcast at 11AM Eastern,
John Hawkins talks about the SCOTUS nominee, and the latest in American politics

Elena Kagan, Cap and Trade, and John Hawkins

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

In today’s podcast at 11AM Eastern,
John Hawkins talks about the SCOTUS nominee, and the latest in American politics

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Non-judge Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court

Monday, May 10th, 2010

President Obama has nominated a lawyer with no judicial experience to the Supreme Court:
NBC: Obama to name Kagan for high court
1st female solicitor general served as White House adviser under Clinton

Kagan would be the first justice without judicial experience in almost 40 years. All of the three other finalists she beat out for the job are federal appeals court judges, and all nine of the current justices served on the federal bench before being elevated. The last two justices who had not been judges, William Rehnquist and Lewis Powell, joined the Supreme Court in 1972.

William Jacobsen finds a supreme irony in the nomination: Supreme Irony – Kagan Nomination Ends Gay Marriage Hopes

But on one issue of critical importance to the left — the constitutional right to same-sex marriage, Kagan has staked out a very clear and unequivocal position: There is no constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

In the course of her nomination for Solicitor General, Kagan filled out questionnaires on a variety of issues. While she bobbed and weaved on many issues, with standard invocations of the need to follow precedent and enforce presumptively valid statutes, on the issue of same-sex marriage Kagan was unequivocal.

This doesn’t mean that Kagan opposes gay marriage. But she clearly believes it is a matter for the political process, not a constitutional right.

While it is not clear what view the other Justices have, it is likely that a Kagan on the Court will put an end to any ultimate chance of success in the federal lawsuit lawsuit filed by David Boies and Ted Olson to have California Prop. 8 declared unconstitutional.

Reasonably assuming the four conservative judges share Kagan’s view, there now will be a definite majority on the Court against recognizing a constitutional right to gay marriage.

The Washington Post touts her lack of judicial experiece, saying Elena Kagan never let lack of experience hold her back. Hail the SCOTUS bureaucrat:

“She knows government, and she knows how to run institutions.”

UPDATE
SCOTUS blog has 9750 Words on Elena Kagan
More than you ever wanted to know
, via TigerHawk

——————————————-

I must meet a deadline this morning, therefore there will be no podcast today. Thank you for your support.

Non-judge Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court

Monday, May 10th, 2010

President Obama has nominated a lawyer with no judicial experience to the Supreme Court:
NBC: Obama to name Kagan for high court
1st female solicitor general served as White House adviser under Clinton

Kagan would be the first justice without judicial experience in almost 40 years. All of the three other finalists she beat out for the job are federal appeals court judges, and all nine of the current justices served on the federal bench before being elevated. The last two justices who had not been judges, William Rehnquist and Lewis Powell, joined the Supreme Court in 1972.

William Jacobsen finds a supreme irony in the nomination: Supreme Irony – Kagan Nomination Ends Gay Marriage Hopes

But on one issue of critical importance to the left — the constitutional right to same-sex marriage, Kagan has staked out a very clear and unequivocal position: There is no constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

In the course of her nomination for Solicitor General, Kagan filled out questionnaires on a variety of issues. While she bobbed and weaved on many issues, with standard invocations of the need to follow precedent and enforce presumptively valid statutes, on the issue of same-sex marriage Kagan was unequivocal.

This doesn’t mean that Kagan opposes gay marriage. But she clearly believes it is a matter for the political process, not a constitutional right.

While it is not clear what view the other Justices have, it is likely that a Kagan on the Court will put an end to any ultimate chance of success in the federal lawsuit lawsuit filed by David Boies and Ted Olson to have California Prop. 8 declared unconstitutional.

Reasonably assuming the four conservative judges share Kagan’s view, there now will be a definite majority on the Court against recognizing a constitutional right to gay marriage.

The Washington Post touts her lack of judicial experiece, saying Elena Kagan never let lack of experience hold her back. Hail the SCOTUS bureaucrat:

“She knows government, and she knows how to run institutions.”

UPDATE
SCOTUS blog has 9750 Words on Elena Kagan
More than you ever wanted to know
, via TigerHawk

——————————————-

I must meet a deadline this morning, therefore there will be no podcast today. Thank you for your support.

20213

Will-Roberts-Donaldson vs Arianna smackdown VIDEO

Sunday, April 11th, 2010

Zsa-Zsa gets it, for the second time in a week:
Will, Roberts and Donaldson Correct Arianna Huffington on ‘This Week’:

Appearing on Sunday’s “This Week” on ABC, Huffington foolishly claimed that Supreme Court justices John Paul Stevens and David Souter would never be appointed by a Republican President today due to “how far the Party has traveled,” obviously meaning to the Right.

All three of her fellow Roundtable panelists were quick to correct her flawed logic beginning with Sam Donaldson (video follows with partial transcript, relevant section at 9:20)

Check out the transcript at NewsBusters. Here’s the video:

Arianna forgot that Stevens was a conservative when he joined the Court.

Absence of conscience: The SCOTUS and the strip-search case

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

The NYTimes today reports that the SCOTUS may find it OK to strip search children at school in the absence of their parents and an attorney:

Justice Souter may have summarized the mood of the court near the end of the argument in the case, Safford Unified School District v. Redding, No. 08-479. Several justices appeared troubled by the search, but also seemed loath to second-guess school officials confronted with a variety of dangerous substances.

“My thought process,” Justice Souter said, “is I would rather have the kid embarrassed by a strip search, if we can’t find anything short of that, than to have some other kids dead because the stuff is distributed at lunchtime and things go awry.”

The unserious tone of the NYTimes article is particularly grating but you can read the transcript of the oral arguments here and skip the NYT’s reporter’s snark.

In yesterday’s panel at PU, Lyle Denniston commented that the Court might decide in favor of the school district. Denniston’s analysis at SCOTUS Blog emphasizes that the Court’s decision may be driven by fear that the possibility of a drug overdose overrides a child’s rights:

It was common for members of the Court — and, especially, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — to express discomfort with an Arizona prinicipal’s order for a close-to-naked search of a 13-year-old girl. But that sentiment did not appear to be as strong as the concern that drugs may be so destructive for teenagers that some surer means of detecting them had to be acceptable under the Constitution.

No more telling illustration of the Court’s mood emerged than Justice David H. Souter — whose vote would almost have to be won for student privacy to prevail – expressing a preference for “a sliding scale of risk” that would add to search authority — including strip searching — based on how school officials assessed whether “sickness or death” was at stake.

“If the school official’s thought process,” Souter asked, “was ‘I’d rather have a kid embarrassed rather than some other kid dead,’ isn’t that reasonable under the Fourth Amendment?” Stated in that stark way almost compelled agreement, without regard to whether a student singled out for a strip search was actually adding to such a risk, but was only the target of a classmate’s unverified tip.

As you know, I am absolutely appalled that a school district would conduct

  • a strip search
  • on a child
  • based on another student’s claim that the child gave them
  • ibuprofen.

By the way, according to the transcript, said strip search was performed before they searched her locker or her desk. The child’s parents were not notified before the strip search was performed. She was not allowed any civil protections at all.

This is absolutely outrageous.

To add to my wrath (and words fail me over just how angry this makes me), you can find this exchange between Justice Scalia and Matthew Wright in the transcript:

JUSTICE SCALIA: Could I come back to your distinguishing a strip search from a cavity search. What would you require before you would allow a cavity search?
MR. WRIGHT: Nothing at all. A bright line rule. I would not allow it.
JUSTICE SCALIA: No cavity search in school, no matter what?
MR. WRIGHT: We’re not even clinically trained to do that, Your Honor. I would submit that if a child has something stuffed up one of their cavities — and I assume we mean private parts, the very private parts — that the first thing to do would be to send them to the hospital. I mean, we just don’t have that clinical training.

In plain English, the school district would not allow a cavity search on a minor because they “just don’t have that clinical training.” And later, that it would be up to the “local level” to decide on strip searches.

I can only surmise one thing from this forthcoming “immolation of privacy and human dignity in symbolic opposition to drug use”: you can’t have a conscience and be a SCOTUS justice.

God forgive us all. What a disgrace.

Prior post here.

UPDATE
Betsy has more.