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Wed Dec 18, 2013, 06:14 PM

Are You Experimented?

"It is an experiment, as all life is an experiment." --Oliver Windell Holmes

The recent federal court decision, in which US District Court Judge Richard Leon ruled that the NSA telephone surveill program is likely unconstitutional, should be seen as a victory for those who subscribe to the radical notions found in the Bill of Rights. However, there are reasons to suspect that the current US Supreme Court will eventually overturn Judge Leon's ruling. If so, it will definitely be a ruling that is not based in law, or shows the slightest respect for the Constitution.

I say this as a person who believes in that Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights. And while I admittedly have no formal training in Constitutional Law -- the rulings the Supreme Court makes in interpreting the Constitution -- it's an area of study that I find fascinating and important. Last week, I filled seven large bookshelves in my dining room, with books on politics, sociology, psychology, and state and federal law; the numerous boxes of books had been stored away for several years.

Because Judge Leon's ruling sparked an interest in this area, I've re-read two books that I find of particular interest: [1] The Bill of Rights: Original Meaning and Current Understanding; edited by Eugene W. Hickok, Jr.; University of Virginia; 1991; and [2] Freedom for the Thought We Hate; Anthony Lewis; MJF Books; 2007.

The above quote by Justice Holmes, comes from his dissent in Abrams v United States, a case that had to do with the WW1-era Sedition Act and Espionage Act. "Radicals" who opposed the war were tried for the distribution of pamphlets; the appeal of their convictions failed.

Although that case was based upon Amendment 1, it also has an interesting connection to the Amendment 4 rights that Judge Leon considered. The postmaster general decided that those two Acts provided him the authority to examine citizens' mail. He took it upon himself to decide that the Post Office would refuse to deliver papers or magazines that might claim "that the Government is controlled by Wall Street" (Lewis; 105).

There have been numerous bad rulings by the USSC over the decades. This includes two that have taken place since 2000. Thus, while we should recognize that the federal courts have often made just rulings, there is a history of political/financial influences, racism, and fear and hatred found in the history of Constitutional Law.

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Arrow 9 replies Author Time Post
Reply Are You Experimented? (Original post)
H2O Man Dec 2013 OP
H2O Man Dec 2013 #1
nadinbrzezinski Dec 2013 #2
Raine1967 Dec 2013 #3
Octafish Dec 2013 #4
SomethingFishy Dec 2013 #5
H2O Man Dec 2013 #7
pacalo Dec 2013 #6
Hydra Dec 2013 #8
hootinholler Dec 2013 #9

Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Dec 18, 2013, 10:34 PM

1. Well, even if

this OP gets no responses, that's okay -- my daughter is back from college, and I gave her a two-book set of all the music from The Beatles. And she's playing a bunch of it on the piano. More, a couple musician friends stopped by, and so it has been The Beatles and the Rolling Stones music all evening.

Life is good.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Dec 18, 2013, 10:52 PM

2. It is a fascinating subject.

 

My interest is chiefly on the first.

I got a box of such books as well.



Enjoy your family.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Dec 18, 2013, 11:02 PM

3. Bookmarking.

It's a great topic and I would very much like to see what members of DU have to say!

(The members that know more about this area than I do. )

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Dec 18, 2013, 11:08 PM

4. John Roberts fixed Florida and FISA court in favor of the fascists.

Then, there's his work as an Iran-Contra fixer. Which makes me believe he's more into the Sullivan & Cromwell we-know-what's-good-for-you mindset than most people, the perfect voice for the "Wall Street runs Washington" trickle-down mindset.

So, there is that. But, as you know, what really matters in life is the realization that it is a miracle -- and a gift, at that.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Dec 18, 2013, 11:20 PM

5. Now to show my age..

I saw your title and thought "Have you ever been experimented... well, I have..." (Jimi Hendrix joke kids... )


I'm going to have to check out that book on the Bill Of Rights...

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Response to SomethingFishy (Reply #5)

Thu Dec 19, 2013, 09:04 AM

7. "not necessarily stoned,

but, uh, beautiful...."

He was so good. And I don't think he'd mind .....

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Thu Dec 19, 2013, 12:10 AM

6. K&R.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Thu Dec 19, 2013, 06:21 PM

8. This really sums up what I've been thinking lately

We have laws. We have a Supreme Court. We have a Supreme Court and entire Justice, Legislative and Executive system that ignores those laws and does what they feel like.

How is that supposed to work for the 99%?

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Thu Dec 19, 2013, 08:54 PM

9. Now I have to go look up the sedition act

and the postmaster's response to it.

I find that astounding, but somehow at the same time, not surprising.

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