Joe Sobran (1987) On What A CONSERVATIVE Activist Court Might Do
July 10, 2018, 12:39 PM
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Pat Buchanan wrote the other day that:

If Mitch McConnell's Senate can confirm his new nominee for the Supreme Court, President Donald Trump may have completed the capture of all three branches of the U.S. government for the Republican Party.

Not bad for a rookie.

And the lamentations on the left are surely justified.

For liberalism's great strategic ally and asset of 60 years, the judicial dictatorship erected by Earl Warren and associates, may be about to fall.

Judicial supremacy may be on the way out.

Another constitutionalist on the court, in the tradition of Antonin Scalia, could ring down the curtain on the social revolution the court has been imposing since the salad days of Chief Justice Earl Warren.

The nomination of the Ann Coulter approved Brett Kavanaugh

brings up the question of what a conservative court might do.

To somewhat recycle something from last year, which I wrote in response to a Glenn Reynolds op-ed on A 'living Constitution' on the right, what might a Trump Court do, or putting it another way, what is the Left afraid it might do?

In 1987, I read a satirical article by the late Joe Sobran about a possible conservative future. It was not what Sobran wanted, but what a liberal would fear.

It’s called 2007/The Year in Review, by Joseph Sobran, The American Spectator, December 1987

Ann Coulter visits Joe McCarthy's grave.It starts out:

It was another bad year for liberals, as what had once been called "the New Right" consolidated its domination of American politics. The new tone was perhaps best typified on May 2, when President Patrick Buchanan laid a wreath on the tomb of Senator Joseph McCarthy on the fiftieth anniversary of the once-despised Wisconsin senator's death. "We must rededicate ourselves to his ideals," the President said, "and see to it that never again is a patriotic public servant hounded to an early grave."[Pictured right: Ann Coulter visits Senator McCarthy's actual grave.]

Here are what was imagined for the Supreme Court in an alternate-universe 2007.

  • “Pornographer Hugh Hefner, 81, was electrocuted in California after the Supreme Court rejected a last-minute appeal for a stay of execution. ‘This had dragged on way too long,’ said Associate Justice Jerry Falwell. ‘Justice delayed is justice denied.’”
  • “In Albuquerque, a routine police raid uncovered a huge cache of illegal condoms, apparently smuggled in from Mexico.”
  • “Seven more states ratified a proposed constitutional amendment barring the teaching of the theory of evolution in publicly funded schools and universities.”
  • “The Supreme Court upheld the use of torture against criminal suspects, provided that all other methods of securing confessions had been exhausted. ‘Torture must never be an end in itself,’ wrote Justice Gilead Simms for the 8-to-l majority. ‘In the great majority of cases wiretaps, raids, informants, and threats should suffice to extract information leading to conviction. The excesses of the Miranda era cannot be invoked to justify excesses in the opposite direction.’”
  • “Citing health reasons, Justice Robert Bork, 80, announced his retirement from the Supreme Court. According to Washington insiders, the real reason for Justice Bork's retirement was his discouragement at being the last remaining apostle of judicial restraint in an era of conservative activism.”
  • “The Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional the drunk driving laws of all 50 states. Speaking for the five-man majority, Justice Grover Rees held that drunk driving was protected by a ‘penumbra’ of the Twenty-First Amendment.
  • “The Supreme Court struck down all federal ‘social programs’ passed since 1933 as invalid under the Tenth Amendment.”

Of course, it turns out to have been a dream. A bad dream, by a Democrat:

Milton Grimsby bolted up in bed. His pajamas were soaked with sweat. He looked around the bedroom.It was still 1987. His wife was already dressed and ready to go to her law office. "Oh Megan," he said, "I've had the most awful dream—...

Milton swung stiffly off the bed and pulled on his robe. The world was starting to seem normal again, but he had to make sure. He hurried into the living room and opened the front door and looked down. Yes, the Washington Post was on the porch.

Read the whole thing, which is very funny. Oh, and Milton, if you’re out there? The Post isn’t on the porch anymore.