Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Lochner Dissent No More

I'm increasingly amused when I read things like this from Tapped trying to figure out what Miers feels. In trying to read the tea leaves of what we can prove this person believes, no one is even pretending to make the distinction between "what is good policy" and "what is constitutional law".

It's something we supposedly fetishize when we discuss Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.'s attitude on judicial restraint, or when nominees get to refuse to answer questions, that even if the Judge may personally like or dislike a law, they would only overturn it when it offends the Constitution. This may be true for some justices, but it's simply not true all the time, and no political actors believe it.

James Dobson, close ally of the President, recently said conservatives shouldn't be worried because he has reasons to believe she's good that he can't disclose. To him, her legal feelings on the validity of Roe v Wade are just window-dressing that coincide with her much more important-churchliness.

Which is I guess why it's hard for me to be an idealist, since it's so clear that people don't give tuppence to their ideals over practical goals, or even acknowledge that they could conflict.


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