That’s how fundamentalist Christian libertarian Vox Day describes the Supreme Court’s Boumedienne decision. As extreme an originalist (meaning, not intent) as I am for rule of law reasons disgusted by judges simply making up stuff as if there were a silly law clause in the Constitution, I am sympathetic to that view. It was really the denial of habeas corpus to U.S citizens captured in America (like Padilla) that got my goat the most, and apparently the Supreme Court already prohibited that though I must have forgotten about it. I’m not averse to the use of military courts for some purposes, but the problem administration never got around to setting them up, even preferring to release huge numbers of prisoners without trial (the one person who was convicted of anything is living free in Australia) as even they realize that many have little reason for being there. The President appears to have been fundamentally uninterested in how to resolve the issue and dismissive of the idea that there are supposed to be some constraints on his authority (the Padilla case really did represent a discarding of our fundamental freedoms dating back to the Magna Carta or earlier). John Roberts was right to point out that the Court doesn’t actually specify a clear way forward, which is perhaps a legacy of muddled living-constitutionalism and deference to authorities that fit poorly with an administration that wasn’t even trying to pretend very well. I guess they had a lot on their plate, being busy suckered by a below-average Burger King employee.

I had some good news that day I wanted to share with Vox, but unfortunately his comment section is too popular not to expect it get buried and remained unnoticed. Contrary to his gloomy prognostications, the newest generations are better behaved than their parents. A series has started at Gene Expression titled Previous Generations Were More Depraved. It promises to provide data showing that on a wide variety of measures of social dysfunction things are improving from the bad old days of the Boomers. The first entry is on sluttiness, and brought a smile to this prude’s face. If we look at things from an even larger time scale we may conclude with Stephen Pinker that the Great Sixties Freakout really was an aberration in the long decline of violence. I’m interested in what Randall Colins says about that in his Violence: A Micro-sociological Theory but it will probably be in paperback by the time I get around to it.

UPDATE: A concurring opinion from a Magna Cum Lousy graduate of the I Can Read The Constitution School of Law admitted to bar at pretty much any place he can afford to buy a round.

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