Turley and Greenhouse Discuss Supreme Court

175px-Linda_Greenhouse,_2005The ABA Journal has posted a podcast that I did with former New York Times journalist Linda Greenhouse on the Supreme Court. Greenhouse is currently the Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in Law and Knight Distinguished Journalist-in-Residence at Yale Law School.

The podcast can be accessed here.

65 thoughts on “Turley and Greenhouse Discuss Supreme Court”

  1. Popular Sovereignty is a building block of the Constitution. I guess someone keeps overlooking that little fact.

    I realize it’s been over half a century since you took a civics class, Inga, but you still oughta know that the SC isn’t an elective office.

    I listened to the podcast, and all I learned was that the print reporter is opposed to televising SCOTUS and the occasional tv commentator is in favor of it. More or less what I’d expect. I didn’t hear any arguments either way that were better than Spinelli’s.

    What I’d add to Nick’s point is that the SC has no means of enforcing its decisions other than what Yankees fans call “mystique and aura”. I’d be very hesitant to make the court’s deliberations seem like a Very Special Episode of Judge Judy.

    Everything that gets put on tv becomes entertainment. In the podcast Turley mentioned the senility of Thurgood Marshall. How would anything have turned out better in those days if there’d been an internet full of Vines of him dozing off or drooling or rambling incoherently?

    To me, the “precautionary principle” is decisive in this case.

  2. Students can watch CSPAN and the oral arguments. Oral without the cameras of the “oral arguments” is very educational. We members of the blog can watch the CSPAN oral arguments. We don’t need to see them yak. We just need to hear the yak.

    On the topic of blogging and “journalism” and the First Amendment. It is shallow to simply view our blog rights as within the context of journalist rights under the First Amendment. Here is the First Amendment:

    Amendment 1 – Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression. Ratified 12/15/1791.
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

    I recognize in these “prongs” as they are referred to a blog right in all of the prongs. We might want to set up a religion or advocate one such as the 8th Day Dog Adventists on the blog. We might want to exercise free speech on topics which are penalized or forbidden, such as child rape. We might want to advocate freedom of speech and use the blog to promote and oppose abridgments. We want to get together on the blog and that means “assemble” and we want to assemble so as to petition the government for redress of grievances like gun rights (one side or the other).

    Let us have a topic on this blog of the several Prongs of the First Amendment and their relationship to blogs and the internet. Me, I don’t think that freedom of the press is limited to the New York Times. This blog is a form of journalism. But the free press prong protecting journalism is not the only aspect of the First which protects our free expression here. Tank Dog we have this blog.

  3. I agree Nick. We have generations now that have no depth to what they think they do know. It’s not a permanent condition and I say that from experience. I will be forever digging myself out of the hole my progressive educational system put me in.

    Debate can be a very humbling experience but these blogs; with its anonymity, tend to insulate entrenched views from experiencing any sort of reconciliation with alternative points of view. It’s these people that have no intention on learning anything new and are a complete waste of time. They are a joy to ignore but that won’t stop them from filling the blog with their commentary; because…..it’s all about them. 😉

  4. Olly, They stopped teaching Civics in most schools when the teacher’s union got strong. Dems like to keep citizens ignorant of how govt. is supposed to work for us, not vice versa. I like the idea of having students watch court proceedings. But, I think it would need to selective. Choose cases that would be of interest. The problem is, there aren’t many teachers qualified or motivated to do this. They like to keep their students barefoot and pregnant vis a vis govt. There are some that are not like that. But, they’re mostly old timers. The new teachers have been indoctrinated and don’t know jack about how govt. works, and could care less if their students learn about it either. Of course, boards of education are complicit in this shunning of teaching civics. I was teaching when 9/11 occurred. I was SHOCKED @ how little the other teachers in my school knew about govt.

  5. Popular Sovereignty is a building block of the Constitution. I guess someone keeps overlooking that little fact. Oooops.

  6. Nick,
    I’ve changed my mind (sorta); I think it should be broadcast and every high school and college student should be required to view and discuss the proceedings to graduate. Lord knows, it might inspire a generation of citizens to learn U.S. Civics. And maybe, just maybe we can create defenders of natural rights and republicanism as opposed to the current advocates for majority rule.

  7. Of course, on the other hand, we all could just rely on the ‘expert’ opinion of ‘others’, lol.

  8. I’m sure Professor Turley’s experience and good judgment speaks for itself. He seems to have the capacity to have come to the conclusion that a camera in the SCOTUS won’t lessen the solemnity of the proceedings. I would place my bet that JT is more knowlegeable about the matter than others.

  9. Olly, Indeed. It would be a sad day seeing a Johnny Cochrane ham n’ egger doing a “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit” @ SCOTUS. And, from that same circus, err..trial, let’s not forget the Judge Ito syndrome. Like I said, having spent my life in litigation, I can see both sides of the argument. Any decision one makes should be an informed one.

  10. Our state supreme court has had video broadcasts since the 1990’s and it is normalized for all.

  11. Gary,
    I would agree IF the Executive branch actually enforced the laws Congress wrote; unless the harm you’re talking about is them laying down for the Executive.

  12. Hmmm, maybe y’all don’t like Professor Turley’s “celebrity”? Or do you like it only when he does what you like, such as representing the Republican Congress. The blatant double standard and hypocrisy always squeak out eventually.

  13. “Sycophants” are OK only when JT is representing the Republican Congress, dontcha know! It’s ‘different’ when ‘we’ laude Professor Turley’s opinions and actions, I guess. So much for the “deep thinkers”, lol.

  14. Nick,
    Speaking of sycophants; their numbers will only increase as the cameras turn relatively unknown attorneys into celebrities.

  15. I guess Professor Turley must be one of those people not astute enough to ponder the unintended consequences of cameras in the SCOTUS, LOL! Hey JT! Someone here think you’re not a “deep thinker”.

  16. Olly, Virtually all trials have an audience in the courtroom. I have been involved in trials that were videotaped, and those not. Many more of the latter than the former. There is a profound difference in how attorneys and judges comport themselves when there is just an audience in the courtroom, as opposed to a large viewing audience @ home. You are astute enough to have concerns for the unintended consequences of cameras. Too many people are not deep enough thinkers to weigh the positives and negatives.

  17. And Americans are also well served in being interested in how those laws are deemed Constitutional, or not. I would suggest that those who think there aren’t ‘enough’ people that are interested and could wade through the legalese and process of the Courts and should be denied seeing it in action are being a bit elitist. We’re not back in the days of lords.

  18. Americans are well served by being witnesses to how laws are made and by being active participants into choosing the people who choose those who make those laws.

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