Morning Ethics Primal Scream, 8/13/19: Democratic Senators Tell SCOTUS, “Nice Little Court You Have Here. Be A Shame If Anything Were To HAPPEN To It…”

1. Lance, Lance, Lance...Is this the most obnoxious and desperate virtue-signalling tweet of all time?

“I can’t drop many people on a bike these days but I just blew the fuckin’ doors off Mike Pence on a Nantucket bike path. Day. Made.”

Because Lance thinks everyone hates the Vice President, he boasts about beating a 60 year-old politician as if he’s rendered some symbolic humiliation. You’re the one who should be humiliated, Lance. You. I’m no fan of Mike Pence, but he’s not a sociopathic  fraud, cheat and villain like you are.

The fact that this tweet got 108,000 “likes” shows how much damage an ethics corrupter can do.

2.  A perfect example of ignoring a real problem to avoid having to admit it exists and then deal with it...while making the problem worse in the process.U.S. Commission on Civil Rights member Gail Heriot, a lawyer and frequent protester about how her overwhelmingly Democratic colleagues on the committee  engage in “woke” insanity, attacks a new government report in her op-ed in the Washington Times. Herriott attached her dissent to the report, a routine she has become accustomed to. She writes,

Shoddy work is not uncommon for government commissions. But with its awkwardly-titled new report — “Beyond Suspensions: Examining School Discipline Policies and Connections to the School-to-Prison Pipeline for Students of Color with Disabilities” — the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights goes beyond shoddy. Its unsupported claims threaten teachers’ ability to keep control of their classrooms. No one disputes that African-American, Native American and Pacific Islander students get disciplined at school at higher rates than white students. Similarly, white students are disciplined at higher rates than Asian-American students, and boys are disciplined more often than girls. Not surprisingly, students with behavioral disabilities get in more trouble than those without. Sometimes the differences are substantial. Suspension rates, for example, have been about three times higher for African-Americans than for whites in recent years.The commission purports to find, however, that “students of color as a whole, as well as by individual racial group, do not commit more disciplinable offenses than their white peers.” According to the commission, they are simply punished more. Readers are left to imagine our schools are not just occasionally unfair, but rather astonishingly unfair on matters of discipline.

The report provides no evidence to support its sweeping assertion and, sadly, there is abundant evidence to the contrary. For example, the National Center for Education Statistics surveys high school students biennially. Since 1993, it has asked students whether they have been in a fight on school property over the past 12 months. The results have been consistent. In 2015, 12.6 percent of African-American students reported being in such a fight, while only 5.6 percent of white students did….Because minority students disproportionately go to school with other minority students, when teachers fail to keep order out of fear that they will be accused of racism, it is these minority students — stuck in disorderly classrooms — who suffer most.

What accounts for the differing misbehavior rates? The best anybody can say is, “We don’t know entirely.” But differing poverty rates, differing fatherless household rates, differing parental education, differing achievement in school, and histories of policy failures and injustices likely each play a part. Whatever the genesis of these disparities, they need to be dealt with realistically. We don’t live in a make-believe world.

As Joe Biden so sagely pointed out for us, Democrats care about their official truths, not facts.

3. Kaboom! There goes my head! I can’t believe five Senate Democrats—even these five— would be so foolish—or transparent?—to try this. In an amicus brief filed this week in a closely-watched case regarding a New York City gun law, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse, (D-R.I.) Richard Blumenthal, (D-Conn., Mazie Hirono, (D-Ha), Richard Durbin, (D-Ill) and Kirsten Gillibrand, (D-NY)  included a not-so-veiled threat of retaliation if SCOTUS didn’t do what they want it to do.  “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it,” the brief said. “Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics.'”

The obtuseness, ethically, and legally, of such language in any brief, not to mention a SCOTUS brief, is staggering. “Not well” to this group of hyper-partisan Senate embarrassments means “the Court won’t knuckle under to progressive agendas when they violate the Constitution.” Such a brief directly breaches the Separation of Powers, and unless I misjudge the justices, risks alienating the liberals on the Court as much as the conservatives.

One prevails in court appeals by making persuasive legal arguments, not by issuing threats. A lawyer who included a similar statement in a brief would face sanctions, and rightly so.

The brief’s tone is one more instance of the ominous totalitarian tilt of the Democratic Party in 2019. “Do what we want, or you’ll be sorry!’ is how the Nazis treated their judges, as powerfully explained in “Judgement at Nuremberg,” which my theater company of yore produced and which I researched extensively. The judges who submitted to such blackmail ended up being convicted of war crimes, and they were threatened with death.

I am confident that our best judges will display sterner stuff and maintain their integrity in the face of this disgraceful and far less realistic threat. [Pointer: Steve Witherspoon]

23 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Primal Scream, 8/13/19: Democratic Senators Tell SCOTUS, “Nice Little Court You Have Here. Be A Shame If Anything Were To HAPPEN To It…”

  1. Threatening the Supreme Court of the United States? And they call conservatives fascist? And the only way to “restructure” — not just threaten — SCOTUS — would be with a Constitutional Amendment. Good luck with that, you morons!

    • No, their current thinking is that they would just pack the court with progressives. Appoint 10 woke progressives in their 20’s and you won’t have any more problems. Send the ‘Gang of 4’ to the Supreme Court along with 6 friends.

  2. Jack: “The obtuseness, ethically, and legally, of such language in any brief, not to mention a SCOTUS brief, is staggering.”

    Are you kidding (I’m kidding when I ask that)? The Democratic Party has done this for more than decades. There was Andrew Jackson’s snub of the Court.

    Then, FDR threatened to pack the Court.

    Then, Obama shamed them in the State of the Union (I think they should have walked out at that moment, but that’s me).

    The only thing different here is that lowly Senators now think they can try to bully the Supreme Court.

    They want to re-structure the Court to reduce the influence of politics? They? The politicians?

    This truly is Kaboom-worthy.

    Somewhat related note: read an interview with Ginsburg recently. She opposes stacking the Court because of the political implications and that stability on the Court takes away some of that political influence.

    She still seemed like an ideologue, but an honest one.


      • I have been baffled by that for too many years. I don’t think there has been a one party government that was ever good in the long run.

        And a strawman secondary party isn’t effective enough to count… the mass media is showing this at how fast it’s shedding relevance with the masses. The really big corporate owners don’t realize yet that alienating moderates as well as conservatives turns away their bread and butter. (Solo, STD, and Batwoman as cases in point) The interesting idea that draws attention doesn’t become a bankable IP because they actively push audience away with condescending attitude instead of including their opponents. Flash in the pan projects end up alienating those who were excited at first, while the cynics get proven. Big money comes from pleasing the MAJORITY of the audience, not a professed elite who literally do not buy into the dvd, book, games, toys, and so on where profit snowballs.

  3. The Supreme Court should hold the senators in contempt of court. It has been done before, although only once that I know of. I think this should be the second time.

    Their writing is not only an abuse of process, it is a deliberate and measured threat against the court and a rejection of their authority. Saying something like this in a WaPo or Times op-ed would be no big deal, but to file it in an official proceeding is an unheard-of level of demagoguery and shows direct contempt for the Supreme Court as constituted.


  4. 1. Like I said, politics brings out the worst of the worst in everyone. I didn’t think Lance could go lower, but he did.

    2. They started with their conclusions, then backed into them. No surprise.

    3. 2 of the liberals (Kagan, Sotomayor) are Democrat hacks and the other 2 (Breyer, 81 tomorrow, and Ginsburg, 86 and not in the best of health) have one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel. The first two are safe if the Dems restructure the court, the last two won’t be around to see them do it and don’t care. That said, if one of the latter two dies or is forced off the court by health issues and replaced by a conservative, the Democrats’ hopes will break like the proverbial china introduced to the bull. The conservatives will know the Democrats are gunning for them, and as long as their majority holds, somehow they will find a way to shoot them down on everything.

  5. 3:
    A couple of people posted on this in yesterday’s open forum. You wrote “I am confident that our best judges will display sterner stuff and maintain their integrity…”

    Would this include Roberts? He is sometimes, perhaps worried about his “legacy”, subject to bouts of a sort of virtue-signalling in his decisions. Will he grow a spine in opposition to this threat, or double-down on trying to make himself look “fair”?

    Pulling our friends the Cuomos into another conversation, it’s not as if this instance is a unique example of behavior from democrats. Recall that Andrew Cuomo has made mafia-esque threats against businesses to force them to sever ties with the NRA, and the Obama administration pulled similar stunts affecting firearms related businesses.

  6. 1) Best response I saw to Armstrong’s tweet: “Really? How much juice did it take to do THAT?”

    2) Any bets on how long it will be before Heriot throws up her hands in disgust and walks away?

    3) Sound and fury, signifying nothing – other than a clarion call to the D base to try and recapture the Senate in 2020.

    • 1. My favorites were:

      “That means both you and Mike Pence have never won the Tour de France”
      “Congratulations, you beat a 60-year old non-athlete who didn’t know he was in a race.”

  7. As I said yesterday, no justice, no peace. Do what we demand or else.

    I’m ready for the or else.

    As for Lance, arrogant, ignorant, virtue signaling assholes are of no concern. If I were Mike, I’d have told him to shut the eff up. But Mike has always been a much classier act.

    • It’s so amazing that alleged adult admire Armstrong’s behavior and attitude because “Trump!” Mystifying. I wonder how this behavior is going to morph over the next five years?

  8. #3 This completely blew my mind when I read about it. At a very minimum Senators Sheldon Whitehouse, (D-R.I.) Richard Blumenthal, (D-Conn., Mazie Hirono, (D-Ha), Richard Durbin, (D-Ill) and Kirsten Gillibrand, (D-NY) should be censured for their intimidation tactic.

    Progressives, Democrats, social justice warriors, (sorry for the obvious repetition) have proven repetitively that they will use any intimidation tactic they think they can get way with to get their way.

    “I am confident that our best judges will display sterner stuff and maintain their integrity in the face of this disgraceful and far less realistic threat.”

    I don’t have the same confidence.

    After what happened at the Kavanaugh hearings, I’m certain that progressives will resort to anything to intimidate SCOTUS into submission. If SCOTUS doesn’t bow to their will I fully expect #MeToo or racism or some other popular kind of public smearing accusations against Justices to start oozing out of the progressive swamp. I wouldn’t put it past the modern political left to resort to direct intervention with specific Justices to blackmail them.

  9. “I am confident that our best judges will display sterner stuff and maintain their integrity in the face of this disgraceful and far less realistic threat.”

    Right, but what about the other five?

  10. After hearing from several readers, I reluctantly decided to capitulate to cultural illiteracy and change “Shane” in the headline to the more pedestrian and expressive, “shame.” But it wasn’t a typos. In “Shane,” in my book perhaps the greatest Western of them all, the villainous ranchers threaten the courageous farmers with destruction if they don’t knuckle under, and in fact burn farms, kill livestock, and murder some of the farmers. That was my meaning in the play on words, using “Shane” for “shame.” Alas, it appears to have gone over everyone’s head, so now it’s just “shame.” Sad.

    You all buy that explanation, don’t you?

    (You should still watch “Shane,” if you have never seen it.)

  11. 1. While getting 108,000 likes is disheartening, the online reaction to this has been encouraging. Armstrong is definitely not getting the Virtue-Signaling Credit he thought he would get and is being roundly criticized.
    2. The Democrats are slowly pushing their moderates out. I don’t know how long she’ll last.
    3. I have to wonder if this was not so much intended for the Court as it was for their base to see and to encourage. Dangerous as it is to undermine the SCOTUS this way, because, as has already been pointed out, they don’t seem to understand that what they do to others can be done to them, they have to keep their unhinged, ignorant supporters on the Talking Points that the SCOTUS is nothing but a bunch of old white men.

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