Wednesday, June 29

Amy Coney Barrett says the supreme court is not ‘partisan tricks’. Oh really? | David sirota


WAr is peace, freedom is slavery, and the supreme court is an impartial and dispassionate branch of government, free from bias – this is the Orwellian fable that Judge Amy Coney Barrett is now asking Americans to believe.

And Barrett is asking us to believe him not only after the court’s wildly partisan ruling on abortion rights, but also just months after he promoted climate denialism to a national audience and refused to recuse himself while helping to secure a victory. legal for the fossil fuel giant. who employed his father for decades.

This is a story not only of cartoonish hypocrisy, but also of deception: a frantic attempt to prevent a larger part of the country from realizing that the court is a corporate star camera which has become one of the most powerful partisan weapons in American politics.

First, the blatant hypocrisy: in a event That seems ripped from the pages of The Onion, Barrett appeared this weekend with Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell at a celebration of a University of Louisville facility he named. After being introduced by the most partisan Senate leader in American history, Barrett declared that the Supreme Court, which now includes three people who worked directly in the Republican campaign to steal the 2000 election, “is not made up of a lot of partisan tricks.”

If that wasn’t absurd enough, Barrett later stated that judges must be “very vigilant to make sure they don’t allow personal biases to creep into their decisions, as judges are people too.”

That ethical watchdog lawsuit came less than four months after Barrett discarded his own past. challenge list and opted for take part in the award of a important climate case against Shell Oil, the fossil fuel giant that employed his father for nearly three decades. Barrett refused to recuse himself even though a brief amicus was brought in the case by the American Petroleum Institute, the lobby group that her father helped drive – and despite the fact that a prominent supporter of the case said his father could be subpoenaed for a deposition because of his potential “direct knowledge and operational involvement in how Shell handled climate threats.”

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But there was no challenge and, with Barrett’s help, the supreme court face with Shell and other fossil fuel giants, achieving a major procedural victory for the oil and gas industry.

Barrett’s involvement in that case followed her Senate confirmation hearing, in which she rejected acknowledge the undisputed science of climate change (and in which flabby Democrats decided not bother to pressure her into recusal). She made her position as an attempt to avoid having opinions on the matter, but of course refusing to state a basic scientific fact is the opposite of dispassionate. It is an ideological and partisan expression of republican orthodoxy totally disconnected from empirical data.

And in case you thought that Barrett’s bigotry, hypocrisy, and conflicts of interest are related to just one isolated case, remember that in the years to come, the fossil fuel industry surely will. ask for the higher court to protect you from the legal consequences of your weather crimes.

Barrett’s motives here, however, aren’t just about how war is peace in its own way through his own ridiculously obvious conflicts of interest. He is also trying to preserve the image of the court as a transcendent source of apolitical morality at a time when more and more Americans may finally, belatedly, realize that the panel is, in fact, made up of hackers.

As the Daily Poster has been reporting for quite some time, the panel has become the most conservative supreme court in modern history. This is a group of judges who now loyally sign the legal requests of the United States Chamber of Commerce and other corporate groups that fund politicians and nomination drives that install right-wing appointees in court. The judges have become so politically brazen that they are now quietly issue historical rulings in total secrecy through a so-called shadow file.

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Despite this, the corporate media portrayed the court like moderator strength above politics, and even supposedly liberal or centrist experts have promoted some of the more right-wing magistrates.

This propaganda campaign has worked, even as the court exacerbates the climate crisis, restricts abortion rights, tramples on voting rights, and issues increasingly extreme rulings that help corporations crush workers. almost two thirds of Americans say they approve of the court’s job, according to the latest poll.

Yet that’s a sizable six points from last year, suggesting that more of the country is beginning to realize that a fetid form of corporatism and partisanship is quietly rotting away the judiciary from within.

Barrett rightly feels that this understanding threatens the perceived legitimacy of the justice system and could therefore generate momentum for real reform, whether it means term limits for supreme court judges or a field extension.

Any of those reforms is a threat to his power and the power of all the corporate forces that bought jobs in higher courts for right-wing judges. So he’s trying to do everything he can to prevent America from understanding just how dire the supreme court has become.

That’s what his speech was really about, and we shouldn’t be fooled. We should be emboldened behind the cause of finally fixing a star chamber that is causing so much damage across the country and the world.

  • David Sirota is a columnist for The Guardian US and an investigative journalist. He is editor-in-chief of Jacobin and founder of the daily poster. He served as a speechwriter for Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign.

  • This article was originally published on Daily poster, a community-funded investigative news outlet

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