Friday, April 25, 2014

A Constitutional Amendment to End the US Supreme Court

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has written a book advocating a series of constitutional amendments that aim to, well, increase the power of the supreme court.  According to USA Today the retired federal judge advocates abridging the right to bear arms, abolishing the death penalty, restricting campaign spending, reducing the independence of states, and changing  congressional rules.

The US Supreme Court is a failed, backward-looking institution, and a former supreme court justice's giving advice about government is akin to a former General Motors executive's giving advice about free enterprise or a former Enron executive's giving advice about morals.  Actually, a former Enron executive, including the ones in jail, is better equipped to give ethics advice than is a retired supreme court justice, for the moral turpitude of the supreme court is worse than Enron's.

Instead of Stevens's stale ideas, why not a constitutional amendment to abolish the Supreme Court, which has been a cancer on the American economy since 1803, the year of Marbury v. Madison?  The worst thing Jefferson did wasn't the Louisiana Purchase--it was the failure to overturn Marshall's illegitimate claim that the supreme court has the right to interpret the constitution.  Instead of a Supreme Court, the state courts could set up an arbitration system to adjudicate disputes among states, and Congress could set up an arbitration system to adjudicate disputes with foreign powers.  The rest of the things that the US Supreme Court does, all of which it has mangled, could be done by state courts.  That would encourage diversity, one of the supposed aims of the totalitarian federal state.

Since centralization and excessive federal power has resulted in a stagnant standard of living for most Americans--but not Stevens, who has spent a lifetime living off federal taxes and centralizing policies that have benefited him at the public's expense--it is difficult for me to understand why Americans could possibly care what Stevens has to say.

No comments: