Last week, when the pilfered draft of a Supreme Court opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito was leaked to the media, it saddened me deeply. My sadness was brought about by the realization that someone is trying to sabotage the highest court in the land. Justice Robert Jackson, who sat in the 1940s and 1950s, famously said that the Supreme ...Read more
Last week, the Director of National Intelligence, the data-gathering and data-concealing arm of the American intelligence community masquerading as the head of it, revealed that in 2021, the FBI engaged in 3.4 million warrantless electronic searches of Americans. This is a direct and profound violation of the right to privacy in "persons, houses...Read more
The core of the problems with Disney and Florida is the American addiction to corporatism. This is the use of government power for the benefit of the government's patrons. Stated differently, it is a symbiotic relationship between the government and a private business that gives government officials corporate largesse and the private business a ...Read more
Most judges and lawyers agree that the war on drugs in the past 50 years has seriously diminished the right to privacy guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment.
Now a small group of legal academics is arguing that the war in Ukraine should be used to diminish property rights guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment.
Here is the backstory.
The Fourth ...Read more
That God, which ever lives and loves,
One God, one law, one element,
And one far-off divine event
To which the whole creation moves.
-- Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)
When American colonists were oppressed by British governance, the word most frequently uttered in pamphlets, editorials and sermons was not "safety" or "taxes"; it ...Read more
In the give and take at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on President Joseph R. Biden's nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court, and in commentary about that give and take, a dangerous line of argument emerged from some senators over the role of the court in our lives.
One senator suggested that the lawfulness of ...Read more
Last week, prosecutors and defense counsel at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, completed three weeks of plea negotiations. At the end of the three weeks, the military judge presiding over the trials of the five plotters of the attacks on 9/11 signed an order reflecting that progress had been made and anticipating a continuation of the negotiations in May. ...Read more
President Joseph R. Biden caused a stir in the media last week when he called Russian President Vladimir Putin "a war criminal." Biden's statement was apparently made to capitalize on the government's and the American media's monolithic anti-Russian messaging.
Is Putin a war criminal? In a word: No.
Here is the backstory.
Criminals are ...Read more
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Biden administration has undertaken a vast scheme against Russian economic actors, which it characterizes as "sanctions." The scheme consists in seizing assets, freezing assets, and prohibiting lawful and constitutionally protected commercial transactions.
All of this is aimed at dissuading Russian ...Read more
Last week, a bitterly divided Supreme Court dismissed a case brought by a detainee at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba against the Department of Justice because the government claimed the information sought in the case was a state secret, the revelation of which will impair national security.
The plaintiff in the case has already ...Read more
"Now, hatred is by far
The longest pleasure;
Men love in haste
But they detest at leisure."
-- Lord Byron (1788-1824)
Last week in a federal courthouse in Brunswick, Georgia, the government of the United States of America successfully concluded a criminal show trial the purpose of which was to demonstrate the government's supposed ...Read more
After a jury in 2006 declined to impose the death penalty on Zacarias Moussaoui, who had just pleaded guilty to being the 20th 9/11 hijacker, the government announced that another person was the 20th. Yet, that person, Mohammed al-Qahtani, was ordered released from the U.S. Naval prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, last week.
Here is the backstory....Read more
In the past month, this column has twice addressed the unbridled propensity of federal intelligence agencies to spy on Americans without search warrants as required by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
These agencies believe that the Fourth Amendment -- which protects the individual right to privacy -- only regulates law ...Read more