No Future for the GOP?

Leo

Well-known member
Supreme Court nominees have to go through congressional hearing and a senate vote, so as long as there isn't a progressive majority in the senate, no progressive judges would be approved.

A big issue is the conflicting rulings from last week. In Roe, the court said it's up to individual states to decide their abortion laws. But a day earlier, they struck down a NY state gun law, saying federal law supersedes state law. The two cases are not exactly oranges-to-oranges, but enough so that it looks like the court went one way on abortion and the opposite way on guns.
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
If he wants to change the balance of the court he could I understand increase the number of seats and add progressives
very difficult - even leaving aside, as @Leo says, the problem of confirmation hearings

number of justices isn't in Constitution so doesn't require amendment, just a bill passed by Congress and signed into law by President

but court-packing is very unpopular - FDR tried it and was staunchly opposed, including by some of his own party

virtual guarantee no Republicans would vote for such a bill, so Dems would need zero defections, which seems extremely unlikely

Manchin, Synema, etc

lifetime tenure is in the Constitution and would require an amendment to be change, so is even more improbable
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
also virtually impossible to impeach SC justices - they have tenure as long as they follow "good behavior" which is impossibly nebulous
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
Yeah I agree that even if he changed the number he'd have a huge fight on his hands with every appointment. And then when Res get in what might happen?
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
Yeah I agree that even if he changed the number he'd have a huge fight on his hands with every appointment. And then when Res get in what might happen?
again, the number is extremely unlikely to change

it would require either a bipartisan effort, and one party is always going to benefit from current SC makeup

sometimes the Court has skewed liberal - Earl Warren's tenure, famously - and sometimes it has been like this

unfortunately since justices are nominated by President and confirmed by Congress, GOP's current built-in advantages in Senate and to a lesser but extent the electoral college - essentially, U.S. system of govt was designed to protect small states, which have become older, whiter GOP strongholds just as larger, more diverse states have gone the other way - as well as its huge success with gerrymandering (both parties do it, but Republicans are better and more ruthless) the House, as liberal and progressive voters tend to be concentrated in and around cites, mean that they're more likely to have more opportunities to either appoint justices or deny confirmation of those appointed by their opponents.

in other words, the current SC makeup - which usually very much does not reflect majority of American public opinion (i.e. something like 80% of Americans favor at least some kind of abortion access) - is a byproduct of structural problems in U.S. govt
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
I haven't heard anything about it (tho I haven't been looking) but I think Dems should always be pushing DC (and Puerto Rico) statehood ASAP

that's one of the few viable paths to redressing that built-in balance - statehood doesn't require a constitutional amendment, just a bill

or it would for DC, but you can get around that by creating a new state that takes up 99% or whatever of current D.C. and restricting D.C. itself to just the govt part of the city
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
not to, like always, Rome it up, but's hard not to see some parallels to the late Republic

a tiny group of conservative senators - the boni - determined to block change at all costs facing off against more democratic populists trying to address structural problems with the state caused largely by its transition from self-contained republic to sprawling empire

it is not exactly the same (the current wave of global right-wing populism is more akin to Caesar and co than his enemies, who were uncompromising elitists) but there are many similarities

like current GOP, the boni had a huge built-in structural advantage from the way Rome's electoral system was setup - voting went by class from richest to poorest, so elections were usually decided by the upper strata of voters

as well as another huge advantage in being the party of "no" - it's much, much more difficult to create and pass legislation than it is to obstruct it

witness the blanket refusal to even consider Merrick Garland for SC when Obama tried to appoint him

ofc, the boni were so determined to block change that they ended in destroying the very thing they were trying to "save". we'll have to see how that goes here.
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
I mean this is no surprise to anyone, but it's really hard to run a working govt when one of the two parties is basically disinterested in governing
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
not to, like always, Rome it up, but's hard not to see some parallels to the late Republic

a tiny group of conservative senators - the boni - determined to block change at all costs facing off against more democratic populists trying to address structural problems with the state caused largely by its transition from self-contained republic to sprawling empire

it is not exactly the same (the current wave of global right-wing populism is more akin to Caesar and co than his enemies, who were uncompromising elitists) but there are many similarities

like current GOP, the boni had a huge built-in structural advantage from the way Rome's electoral system was setup - voting went by class from richest to poorest, so elections were usually decided by the upper strata of voters

as well as another huge advantage in being the party of "no" - it's much, much more difficult to create and pass legislation than it is to obstruct it

witness the blanket refusal to even consider Merrick Garland for SC when Obama tried to appoint him

ofc, the boni were so determined to block change that they ended in destroying the very thing they were trying to "save". we'll have to see how that goes here.
Please always Rome it up whenever the opportunity arises.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
again, the number is extremely unlikely to change
I agree I'm just saying that if it did, it wouldn't be the answer in itself, there would be loads of work to do after. So I'm not sure even how much incentive there is to fight really hard to change the number of justices.... with the reward being, a load more fighting to make it worth doing in the first place.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
OK having read it I agree with his diagnosis of his problem - or maybe it's not a diagnosis but a description.

Five of the six conservative justices were appointed by presidents who lost the national popular vote. (Republicans have won the national popular vote once since 1988, but appointed 16 of the last 20 justices.) Two of them have been credibly accused of sexual assault. All six were confirmed by a US Senate that overweights the interests of smaller, whiter states, and is therefore regularly controlled by the Republican party even though a Daily Kos study showed that “Senate Republicans have not won more votes or represented more Americans than Democrats” since the 1990s.
Senate Republicans, of course, have used that ill-held majority to stack and rewire the court, holding a 2016 seat open for nearly a year under a Democratic president by manufacturing a rule about confirmations during an election year, but fast-tracking the appointment of a conservative in fall 2020 even after early voting had already begun.

Yes it does seem indisputable that the Rs have packed the court and they have done that by winning elections on minorities, getting a disrepresentationally high amount of the senate and - most shockingly and blatantly to me - the hypocrisy of making up a rule to block Obama's appointment and then ignoring that rule for Trump's. In other words they cheated in all kinds of ways and so the moral case for Dems bending the rules to re-balance the court is, to me, pretty clear. But I agree with that you that they are really going to struggle to do it by increasing the number of justices. What else is there though?

Whatever it is, it will be hard and it will piss people off, I wish they would play some kind of hardball, at times it is very frustrating the way that it feels that the Dems don't seem to understand the kind of fight that they are involved in and the lengths that their opponents will go to. If they stick to "they go low, we go high" they are just going to get punched in the bollocks. I really feel that they need to do something - and if it is gonna be effective it will look very much like cheating and it will raise howls of protest from the right. They have to be prepared for that.

My feeling at the moment is they got to do something or there are gonna be more and more horrendous and terrifying decisions raining down for the next thirty years. If there is nothing else then maybe they should try and increase the number of justices. Better that than nothing is what I'm saying, but is there anything else? I mean I know there are mutterings that Kavanaugh and others lied under oath and this is grounds for removal, that Thomas is too closely related to a conspirator and should step aside (although I'm not sure if they mean for certain cases or permanently) but I don't see these amounting to anything. Also some people are saying that if Trump is jailed or otherwise censured then they can declare his picks illegitimate and then reverse their rulings but that sounds like pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking to me...

My basic question is - what is to be done?
 
They are more interested in maintaining the status quo than attempting to acknowledge that the existing structure doesn't work. Why should these auld judges have more power than the 400m or whatever who live there, or be able to dismiss ruling government ideas out of hand

Same with England and the House of Lords. There are 767 of those lads, how many are just peer-elected yes men or donors and what worth does it serve

If you flood the supreme court with another 7 who are on "your" side then what happens in 3 years when DeSantis gets in, same shit

No-one wants to acknowledge the problems in century-old tradition governing a modern age though
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
All those MAGAs bleating "we're not a democracy" are right in a different way than they think...

Not just century old systems though. Even you sat out to devise a new one I reckon you would struggle to make it completely fair. Probably all the more reason to recognise the limitations of the old though.
 

Clinamenic

θερμοδυναμικός καπιταλιστής
I get the feeling that Jefferson's idea of re-writing a constitution every 19 years coincides with the Trotskyist notion of perpetual revolution, but I don't know enough about the latter to tell how reliant it would be on institutional administration of said revolution.

Anyway its an interesting premise, one we may be able programmatically approach in web3. We can have metastability built into the state via certain periodic an/or event-triggered legislative procedures. As it is, the allowance of amendments is a step toward a metastable state, but arguably we'd need to take it farther. Arguably, society should be able to undergo evolution (qua would-be revolution) without being destroyed. Society here being defined as an ecosystem of social institutions including governmental ones like legislatures.

You could argue that destruction is a necessary feature of evolution, but what isn't evident (to me at least) is that the operating system of society needs to be destroyed in order for said society to evolve to some given extent. Instead, perhaps, we can deterministic windows for overhaul built into on-chain social institutions.
 

Leo

Well-known member
As much as I dislike this Supreme Court decisions on carbon emissions, I think they are right in their finding that the Executive Branch (aka, the president) shouldn't have absolute authority to issue executive orders on major issues. Congress makes the laws, and congress should be the ones who legislate by drafting and voting on new laws (that don't violate the Constitution). Executive power is great when you agree with the policies of the president, horrible when you don't.

The court isn't saying we shouldn't have strong carbon emissions standards and environmental laws, they are saying Congress should be the body that makes those laws, not a president by executive order. If we don't like the law, use the process to change the law. And if your side doesn't have enough votes to change the law in Congress, then we should get out there and elect representatives who share our views.

Of course, gerrymandering makes that difficult, but the point is clear.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
At this point, I think that if someone invented a pill that both prevented and cured all forms of cancer with 100% efficacy, had no side effects, and could be produced for like a dollar apiece, and one of the major drug companies offered to manufacture and distribute it to everyone in America for a nominal fee, and the Dems were like "OK, let's spend a trivial amount of money to save hundreds of thousands of lives and literally hundreds of billions of dollars each year", the Reps would block it out of the sheer joy of being cunts for the sake of being cunts.
 

Clinamenic

θερμοδυναμικός καπιταλιστής
My understanding is that EOs are just calls to action for agencies within the executive branch to take certain actions within their powers allotted by congress. Did the Biden administration make some EO that went against this, re: carbon emissions?
 
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