"I don't care who you are or what stage of life you're in, if you go down one person who is truly proud of you, there's going to be a cavernous hole greeting you every day. And good luck filling it."
An infrequent, random topic, collection of thoughts that caught my fancy when I just happen to be near a computer.
While there are enough blogs on political topics, I decided to go ahead and capture my own disappointment at the Supreme Court declining review the Padilla case. My feelings are that the issue was important enough to have an unambiguous decision from the high court. Instead we have the 4th circuit decision, where even the author of that decision was concerned that administration maneuver signaled concern that the Bush administration was shaky on their chances.
My position has been that we should not fear our court system. If our elected leaders are gaming the justice branch, then their own arguments appear weakened and the justice system is unfairly maligned as not worthy of public trust.
But then, that is the whole thrust of the administration's case. Holding Padillia outside the legal system is an indictment that the courts are not equipped to handle terrorism cases. Similar action of bypassing the FISA court creates a concern that either much of the justice system is broken, or the administration does not show adequate respect for the law. Either is a disturbing situation, but my own view is that the weight of evidence is on the latter position.
Even if the administration truly believes there is a problem with the justice system, then they have an obligation to air those issues and seek solutions within the system. After all, what has been gained from going around the court, rather than tackling the issue head on? We have an unclear position on detaining civilians w/o due process. A discussion on wire tap powers is going on now in a position of embarrassment, instead of dignified rule of law. And the courts now have to be more skeptical about the legality of evidence.
Too many corners have been cut and we would have been well served by the Supreme Court at least hearing the case to make it clear that the administration has to get on better legal footing. Instead, we're likely to see a few more years of the courts being undermined, when there is no indication that the courts are predisposed from working in the best interests of the country in the first place. Sure, we'd get decisions against individual's positions (including mine). But the upside is that at least we'd all know where things stand with legal conviction and could appeal to legislators to make improvements. I hope that's they way people want government to work.