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Many of the attorneys and non-attorneys that I know - those that have an interest in constitutional law at least - have expressed the notion that Justice Scalia is quite an intelligent member of the court and, while they do not always agree with his rulings, those rulings and / or dissents generally proceed from a chain of constitutional logic that is frequently spelled out.  His younger sibling in law, while less has been produced by him since his appointment, is currently viewed as almost equally capable from that standpoint (we'll leave his mouthing "wrong" to the President's SOTU aside for the purpose of this diary).  And we can all pretty much dismiss the guy that is so far to the right that the actual document of the constitution is an afterthought to how the country SHOULD be governed in his vision of the land of wingnuttia.

So to the catapults.....

Justices Scalito (and faithful sidekick) dissented from today's ruling striking down Arizona's law that would authorize the State to prosecute Federal Immigration law in the state.

Justices Scalito (and trusty sidekick) dissented as such... "If securing its territory in this fashion is not within the power of Arizona, we should cease referring to it as a sovereign State," Scalia wrote in a dissent backed by Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas.

Continuing....  "To say, as the Court does, that Arizona contradicts federal law by enforcing applications of the Immigration Act that the President declines to enforce boggles the mind."

And then the old 'if the game ever doesn't go my way, I should have never let you use my ball and bases....'  "A good way of answering that question is to ask: Would the States conceivably have entered into the Union if the Constitution itself contained the Court’s holding? Today’s judgment surely fails that test. [...] If securing its territory in this fashion is not within the power of Arizona, we should cease referring to it as a sovereign State."

So let's see how we can maybe make an analogous counter argument to Scalito and faithful sidekick.

Let's start with the Sovereign State issue.  Posit - Mexico attacks a Nato Country's tanker in the Gulf of Mexico and declares war on that country in a stroke of Military genius.  We send a Navy battle group to the area in support of our commitment under Nato treaty - federal level law.  Meanwhile at Jan Brewer's house, she can see Mexico from her back porch and the Mexicans are jumping up and down taunting her and all of Arizona, bringing in hundreds, no thousands, no hundreds of thousands (yeah, that's the ticket - hundreds of thousands) of troops, tanks, armored personnel carriers and they are all lined up on the border just waiting to blitzkreig Arizona's sorry ass.  To top it off - a few of Jan's neighbors wandered across the border and are now held captive.  Additionally, several known federal drug fugitives have escaped to the border region and are being protected by the Mexican Army.  Jan actually believes they are encamped in US Territory and has alerted Washington and the Administration about the entire situation.  The Commander in Chief (aka Senor Obama), has decided that he will negotiate a peaceful settlement with Mexico in the coming weeks and - as such - he will not be sending ANY part of the US military into Arizona to defend her border or to secure the release of the prisoners or to recapture federal fugitives.  Governor Jan and the First Dude Sheriff Arpaio-ao decide that they are a sovereign state that needs protectin' so they rustle up a posse and head into the fray with weapons drawn and start shooting everything that looks like an enemy combatant.  Is that really just okey dokey - constitutionally - Justices Scalito (and able sidekick)?

Let's continue with enforcing applications of federal law by the State is not contradicting federal law.  Posit - Shortly after the country diffuses the Mexico - Nato situation, Syria invades Israel and we are again forced to honor our treaty obligations and come to Israel's aid.  We do and Syria starts shooting down American fighter jets by the dozen, no hundreds, no thousands, no hundreds of thousands (yeah, that's the ticket - hundreds of thousands).  The losses to our air force personnel are staggering.  Congress declares war - redundant with the treaty but that's what Congress does these days to look like there is something that Congress isn't against.  Boehner cries.  Furthermore, Syrians are seen on Fox News every night (it's the same loop, I would swear it's the exact same loop every night but there's snow-covered Blue Spruce trees in the background and that one guy looks suspiciously like James O'keefe with a bandana and fake mustache, but hey - that news loop on hannity shows that they're torturing our fly boys over there).  So Syrians are now enemy combatants and hated more than Nazi's in the 1940's.  Meanwhile walking along the border from Mexico are a group of students wearing "Our Man Assad is the Bomb" t-shirts and looking suspiciously Syrian.   They have set up camp and have a flagpole with the Syrian Flag flying in the breeze.  Jan Brewer can see this from her back porch and calls Washington and the Administration who says to do nothing since they are about to negotiate a peaceful settlement.  Governor Jan and the First Dude Sheriff Arpaio-ao decide that the war has come to Arizona and rustle up a posse and head into the camp with weapons drawn to capture these enemy combatants and make them POW's.  Is that really just okey dokey constitutionally Justices Scalito (and trusty sidekick)?

Now finally, about that whole taking our ball and bat and glove and bases home with us when the game doesn't go our way thing....  If the Founders representing my New York had known that the state of Arizona would be admitted to the Union, enact bat-shit crazy laws that are a thinly veiled racist manifesto and that such documented racist manifesto would be defended by two Supreme Court Justice hacks and their faithful sidekick, we would never have joined the Union.  And that apparently passes the okey dokey constitutionality test for Justices Scalito and their trusty sidekick.

Peace out.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Duh -- is this a trick question about Scalito? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    twigg, bluezen, New Rule, pittie70, buffie

    A HACK of the most despicable type, for sure!

  •  This is beyond debate (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cassandracarolina, bluezen, pittie70

    He is a hack.

    He attempts to disguise this in a cloak of "Strict Constitutionalism", but disguise is all that it is.

    His mental gymnastics to support a strictly corporate interpretation fools no one.

    I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
    but I fear we will remain Democrats.

    by twigg on Mon Jun 25, 2012 at 03:42:41 PM PDT

  •  How about right wing hack who is (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock, bluezen, pittie70

    intelligent enough to reason his way backwards from his desired conclusion with a chain of legal logic that usually holds together?  That's my view as a lawyer with a strong interest in Constitutional law.  He's not nearly as good at it as Justice Rehnquist was (that was a brilliant right wing hack!).

    The dumb right wing hack poster boy is Justice Thomas - who recognizes that he has nothing to say and never does any reasoning, just follows Scalia.

    Distrust all unreasoning fanatics - even those who agree with you

    by Anti Fanatic on Mon Jun 25, 2012 at 03:48:17 PM PDT

  •  the true measure of scalia's character can (5+ / 0-)

    be more accurately judged by his famous comment about his time on the supreme court:

    he said it was a waste of his talent.

    i agree that it has been a waste -- to the country.

  •  It's always a tough call (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    schumann, pittie70, buffie

    with assholes whether it's the Stupid or the Evil that rules them.

  •  Scalia excels as an advocate, not as a jurist (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    New Rule, subtropolis, buffie

    It is no coincidence that lawyers have great respect for Scalia's skills as an advocate. Lawyers place a higher premium on those skills than on other facets of intelligence.

    The contrast here is with Republican Justices Stevens and Souter (and Democrat Breyer). When you're an intellectually honest judge, and you forgo the cheap sound byte in favor of measured rulings, you don't attract any attention to yourself.

  •  He's Not Only A Hack..... (0+ / 0-)

    some are now saying he's the Devil's spawn.  Think about it.

    There's a rumor going around DC that smoke trails from Scalia's robe whenever he leaves the bench.  Something is up w/ this guy.....& it doesn't appear to be good for the American people.  

  •  grumpy old white man (1+ / 0-)

    who can't stand that people of color are going to run the country down the road.
    the repug plan is to gut this country of the peoples rights.
    so whitey can continue to rule.
    South Africa comes to mind Silver Springs the blue print.
    Great peice in the NYT about Silver Springs...on Sunday.
    Rich pricks pooling their keep. the poor away from their children.  and their tanning booths,gyms, and keeping the poor down  
    The Revolution will happen these crazy white people are sending their ggrandchildern into a vortex of bad things
    They will be blamed....imagine NY city like Rio .
    wish i would be alive to help....
    i hope cooler heads prevail...but.   violence is the only thing that makes them see sense...Mott The Hoople

    In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted." Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

    by lippythelion69 on Mon Jun 25, 2012 at 05:47:02 PM PDT

  •  Like the diarist's handle. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Where's the poll ?

    "..The political class cannot solve the problems it created. " - Jay Rosen

    by New Rule on Mon Jun 25, 2012 at 06:16:45 PM PDT

  •  Excellent points. (0+ / 0-)

    Of course, don't expect Scalia to pay attention to his own opinion if it inconveniences him in the future.

    One more thing...

    Syria invades Israel and we are again forced to honor our treaty obligations and come to Israel's aid.
    Not to nitpick at your hypothetical scenario, but we have no treaty obligations to Israel since they aren't part of NATO or any official alliance with us. The only official exchange is the military aid.

    "A man doesn't save a century, or a civilization, but a militant party wedded to a principle can." - Adlai E. Stevenson

    by Zutroy on Tue Jun 26, 2012 at 01:08:22 AM PDT

    •  No Treaty obligations (0+ / 0-)

      I thought this was still in effect.  If dissolved, I did offer the Posits somewhat tongue in cheek, but you are correct...

       ...the 1952 Mutual Defense Assistance Agreement and subsequent arms agreements between Israel and the United States which limit the use of American military equipment to defense only......

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