July 15, 2016

Justice Ginsburg reveals plan to be "more circumspect."

"On reflection, my recent remarks in response to press inquiries were ill-advised and I regret making them. Judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office. In the future I will be more circumspect."

The word "circumspect" comes from....
early 15c., from Latin circumspectus "deliberate, guarded, well-considered," past participle of circumspicere "look around, take heed," from circum- "around" (see circum-) + specere "to look" (see scope (n.1)).
If you do your judging right, you shouldn't have to look around and be guarded. It should inherently, already come out right. If you need to be more circumspect, you shouldn't be a judge. In this case, in particular, Justice Ginsburg saw fit to say something, and then — looking around — saw that it didn't work in the political direction she liked. Now, she's saying she should have looked around first and figured out it would be unwise to express her opposition to Donald Trump. How is that not political? She regrets doing politics badly.

62 comments:

buwaya said...

She was honest.
It would be best if they all were, and stopped pretending to any principles or reason.
They are legislators representing parties and factions.

Dr Weevil said...

Not only that, she doubled down until the New York Times came out against her, then immediately folded. It's like she doesn't have a clue, just follows the orders of her 'betters' at the Times. Does she do that in her judicial decisions? All signs point to 'yes'. It's (long past) time for her to retire.

traditionalguy said...

The Trump Effect redux: everything the old system has been hiding now gets exposed like a light suddenly being turned on. Ginsburg never had any light turned on her leftist ideology before. So she plans on hiding it better.

Chuck said...

I agree with you 100% on the Ginsburg business, Professor. It was a stupid thing she said. Matched only by the stupidity of the suggestion that she needed to then resign from the Court. And now this stumbling, fumbling apology which does nothing curative.

I also think you were spot-on, on the Times editorial (in essence, the Times' criticizing Ginsburg for doing politics badly) and in your estimate of the apology (in essence, a promise to do politics better in the future).

The Greenhouse Effect.

gspencer said...

The Crypt Keeper will, in the future, be keeping her dark secrets in her cold, black heart.

Sebastian said...

"If you need to be more circumspect, you shouldn't be a judge" Faux judgementalism, right? I mean, the whole Prog point is to capture the courts to advance the cause. RBG was a little more blunt than usual, but the only circumspection Progs approve of (see NYT) is the kind that keeps the mask on when needed. Prog politicking can't bear too much honesty. Yet. But RBG's point is that it doesn't matter anymore: "we won." She's right, though perhaps slightly premature.

Bay Area Guy said...

Kinsley Gaffe - RBG reveals her truthful opinion (liberal political sentiment), takes heat, backtracks. Some judge, huh.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

If she's going to clam up then there won't be much use for an "Emotional Ginsberg" tag.

chickelit said...

How is that not political? She regrets doing politics badly.

If Ginsberg wanted to be political she needed to stand for office. It's too late for that now so she should just STFU. Or better, let her destroy her own legacy.

Nonapod said...

RGB has done more to help Trump this week than Trump himself.

coupe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
coupe said...

To say you will be more circumspect is to say you will be less reckless.

It's better to use 'more' than to use 'less'. It's in the speakers point system manual.

I think the real reason she said it, was she was telling us she is retiring. It's a shot across the bow. I'm retiring, pick your master carefully. A Progressive or wanna-be is better than a man with a fat wallet.

Hagar said...

"In the future, we will all be dead."

David Begley said...

RBG has never been a judge. She's a politician in a robe.

Glad AA figured this out.

TreeJoe said...

I think her regret gives even more ground to a Trump administration to request her recusal on any arguments his SG would make in front of the SC.

She needs to retire as a result of this fiasco. Seriously - both the original comments AND the regret indicate she's unsuited to be an impartial jurist.

mikee said...

I for one expect Hillary to be elected and to make several Supreme Court appointments, after which Justice Ginsburg will be remembered as a pillar of judicial probity and constitutional restraint.

I wonder if the people living during the times of Tammany Hall felt like we do now?

mccullough said...

So much for the Notorious RBG. Biggie never backed down.

Todd said...

Standard answer for a liberal after the cow is out of the barn, the "Costanza defense"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RvNS7JfcMM

Apparently there is nothing that a liberal can do, no line too far, no comment or action to crass or in appropriate, that can't be forgiven by some lame ass apology.

readering said...

Overthinking her remarks by saying she did politics badly. She says flat out that judges shouldn't comment on candidates for elective office. She realizes she should be setting an example for lower court judges, many of whom are governed by express rules against such commentary. I think she should retire before the next term's arguments begin.

Big Mike said...

I feel for you, Professor. It's clear from posts in past years you've had a great deal of respect for Justice Ginsburg. That she's a human being, with a human's biases, is not a surprise. That she's quite lacking in judicial temperament must be a painful surprise.

Original Mike said...

You can't undo what you said. It pains me that someone this dense is deciding constitutional questions.

Saint Croix said...

She was honest.
It would be best if they all were, and stopped pretending to any principles or reason.


You have to read the works of Hugo Black before you say such things.

They are legislators representing parties and factions.

Words have meaning. Laws are made up of words.

The entire Supreme Court would do well to think hard about the word "person."

The Supreme Court has been saying for over a century that corporations are honorary persons. And for forty years, that babies (born or unborn or partially-born) are not persons.

Corporations, which are property, have become persons. And babies, who are persons, have become property.

The two opinions that have gotten the Court into the most trouble--Dred Scott and Roe v.Wade--came about because the Supreme Court had a very basic disregard for humanity. They were willing to kick some human beings out of the class. After Dred Scott, we fought a civil war to put the equal protection clause in the Constitution so this would never happen.

And they did it again!

cubanbob said...

Chuck said...
I agree with you 100% on the Ginsburg business, Professor. It was a stupid thing she said. Matched only by the stupidity of the suggestion that she needed to then resign from the Court. And now this stumbling, fumbling apology which does nothing curative."

The only consistent stupidity is your tiresome remarks on Trump's stupidity. Yes she should resign. His calling for her resignation is not a display of stupidity. Your equation is. Now that she has made Trump's point she ought to have the decency to go. The Republic won't fall if her presence on the court is lacking. Failing that, now that she has stripped the last bit of pretense off the court, Congress ought her to impeach and remove her. She wants to act like a super-legislator then she should consider the impeachment proceeding a recall election.

Saint Croix said...

Slave-owners and Nazis and Supreme Court Justices are the ones who do not know what a person is.

It's particularly damning for Supreme Court Justices, because our Constitution requires them to give all people the equal protection of the laws. So they are not only dismissive of human beings, they are also dismissive of the Constitution they have sworn an oath to protect.

I believe the Senate should put each and every Supreme Court Justice under oath and ask them what a "person" is. If you do not know, you should either quit your job or be fired from it.

I also believe the Senate should be far more rigorous when facing a nominee. "Do you know what a person is?" Anybody who thinks a tree or a rock or chimp or a corporation is a person should be kept off the unelected judiciary. And anybody who insists that some human beings are not people should also be kept off the unelected judiciary. These semantic games are quite evil when we are talking about human beings.

Basil said...

Corporations, which are property, have become persons. And babies, who are persons, have become property.

The Court simply held that speech doesn't lose its protections under the First Amendment because the people who are speaking chose a corporate form to make the speech. DO you disagree with that?

Does the NY Times (a corporation) have Constitutional rights?

The level of stupidity here from the left is truly discouraging.

Otto said...

Now that it is on the table , that indeed judges are biased ( Trump dealt the cards and RGB played right into his hand),what about law professors: Are they biased and how does it reflect in their teaching. I think RGB may have given the law profession a low blow.

rehajm said...

She belongs with the other old ladies that wreck nice things.

Fernandinande said...

Otto said...
I think RGB may have given the law profession a low blow.


I blame the LAB color space.

Saint Croix said...

The Court simply held that speech doesn't lose its protections under the First Amendment because the people who are speaking chose a corporate form to make the speech. DO you disagree with that?

No

Does the NY Times (a corporation) have Constitutional rights?

Yes.

The level of stupidity here from the left is truly discouraging.

I find people on the right also discouraging.

Unknown said...

Sounds like Trump's musing that her brain is failing may have some merit.

Skeptical Voter said...

Age has taken her judgment and political sin has left its sad scar.

Happens with older people when they go off their meds.

SteveR said...

I'm sorry you got pregnant. Next time I'm next to a naked woman, I'll be more circumspect.

Gahrie said...

Wow...Chuckles is again defending a Left winger. What a surprise.

Either Chuckles is a Moby, as I have been saying all along, or he's example #1 of why Trump exists...the GOP Establishment would rather work with, and defend, the Democrats rather than their base.

Saint Croix said...

The First Amendment is not limited to persons.

But it's not clear, for instance, that a corporation enjoys Fourth Amendment rights "The right of the people to be secure in their persons..." That is very specific, no? Specific to human beings.

Obviously it's far more damning and evil to define human beings as non-people. I am continually dismayed when people on the right want to focus on my disrespect for corporations.

dreams said...

She is getting old and her brain is deteriorating, it happens. I don't think she would have said something like that a few years ago.

Lauderdale Vet said...

> Matched only by the stupidity of the suggestion
> that she needed to then resign from the Court.

Brilliant, rather. It focused the "light" back on her and made questioning her the topic of the day.

Saint Croix said...

hey buwaya

if you want to see what a man with a jurisprudence has to say, you can start here!

TWW said...

I like the hyphenated word "ill-advised" more. Who advised her? What makes it bad advice now but good advice then? I know I'm splitting hairs but she's the wordsmith; she's the Supreme Court Associate Justice?

Roy Jacobsen said...

"I'm sorry I let the mask slip and reveal the lefty hack that I really am."

buwaya said...

"if you want to see what a man with a jurisprudence has to say, you can start here!"

There is an old Tagalog saying - "Laway lang 'yan" - "Its nothing but spit"

You can claim what you want with a fancy argument, but the law, it seems, is what several judges vote for, and they do so for purely human reasons (power relations) that, at best, they may use all their considerable brains to rationalize.

You will have just as much of the First Amendment as the current state of power relations permit you to have. Anything else is just spit.

Fernandinande said...

Saint Croix said...
if you want to see what a man with a jurisprudence has to say, you can start here!


"Black endorsed Roosevelt in both the 1932 and 1936 US Presidential elections and was a staunch supporter of the New Deal."

A politician who didn't like the constitution and didn't understand economics, wearing a funny robe.

Smilin' Jack said...

If you do your judging right, you shouldn't have to look around and be guarded. It should inherently, already come out right. If you need to be more circumspect, you shouldn't be a judge.

Nonsense. If you don't look around, you might miss something hiding in one of those penumbras. They just found gay marriage in one last year.

Saint Croix said...

The most shocking part of Ginsburg's NYT interview...

A second deadlock, in United States v. Texas, left in place a nationwide injunction blocking Mr. Obama’s plan to spare more than four million unauthorized immigrants from deportation and allow them to work. That was unfortunate, Justice Ginsburg said, but it could have been worse.

“Think what would have happened had Justice Scalia remained with us,” she said.

Saint Croix said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
buwaya said...

“Think what would have happened had Justice Scalia remained with us,” she said.

The law, where it is concerned with anything non-trivial, is just a matter of power and tribal loyalty. That's why one man matters - he had different loyalties, he represented different people.

Do you think that judges persuade each other with their brilliance?

Saint Croix said...

Do you think that judges persuade each other with their brilliance?

I think Hugo Black persuaded a lot of people, and won the day.

Bob said...

I'm not saying she is the devil but she DID put her hoof in her mouth.

buwaya said...

"I think Hugo Black persuaded a lot of people, and won the day."

I think it served a lot of important peoples' interests, in the various matter in which he won the day. That is ALWAYS the way of it. If you want your way, get the power, grab the whip.

On the matter of the First Amendment, I am sure that one fine day some other Hugo Black will find a good reason to limit it for some well-argued reason, and will win because it will serve some important interest.

Ann Althouse said...

"I feel for you, Professor. It's clear from posts in past years you've had a great deal of respect for Justice Ginsburg. That she's a human being, with a human's biases, is not a surprise. That she's quite lacking in judicial temperament must be a painful surprise."

Nope. It couldn't be more completely the usual thing for me.

Big Mike said...

I suppose that's what I get for offering sympathy. :-(

Saint Croix said...

That is ALWAYS the way of it. If you want your way, get the power, grab the whip.

William Brennan used to say, "Five votes can do anything around here."

He is with you. I am not.

Bob Ellison said...

We can't all be Barry Manilow.

Bob Loblaw said...

RGB has done more to help Trump this week than Trump himself.

Trump has benefited enormously from the quality of his enemies.

Susan said...

Nonsense. If you don't look around, you might miss something hiding in one of those penumbras. They just found gay marriage in one last year.

Who knows, if they one day get enough "Islamist" judges they might find the throw gays off buildings penumbra.

The Godfather said...

There's something very wrong with a system in which the scope of our rights as Americans is determined by the fact that one old judge failed to take care of his health, and another old judge continues in office after age has addled her mind.

cubanbob said...

Basil said...
Corporations, which are property, have become persons. And babies, who are persons, have become property.

The Court simply held that speech doesn't lose its protections under the First Amendment because the people who are speaking chose a corporate form to make the speech. DO you disagree with that?

Does the NY Times (a corporation) have Constitutional rights?"

Very well said. However the rest of your remark is redundant.

n.n said...

Everything that needs to be known about Ginsburg is already known, she is Pro-Choice: abortion rites (i.e. "final solution"), clinical cannibalism (e.g. Planned Parenthood), selective exclusion ("="), class diversity mongering (e.g. racism, sexism, Affirmative Action), etc. It's a little late to reconsider her choices for normalization, tolerance, and rejection. Perhaps when she was younger, but now she is set in her juvenile ways.

cubanbob said...

Ann Althouse said...
"I feel for you, Professor. It's clear from posts in past years you've had a great deal of respect for Justice Ginsburg. That she's a human being, with a human's biases, is not a surprise. That she's quite lacking in judicial temperament must be a painful surprise."

Nope. It couldn't be more completely the usual thing for me.

7/15/16, 3:36 PM"

Althouse my estimation of you you went off the scale. That is probably the most trenchant observation of cynicism of the law as I have yet to come across from a practitioner and educator and philosopher of law. And I say that with the utmost sincerity.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Fernandinande said...

Otto said...
I think RGB may have given the law profession a low blow.

I blame the LAB color space.


Bravo! Maybe no one else gets the joke, but I laughed. (9 years writing color measurement software.)

Phunctor said...

Surprisingly, at the NYT America's core notions are only mostly dead. Perhaps I should fear HRC's gauleiters a little less. A smidgen. An iota.

I can do this!

SeanF said...

Saint Croix: Words have meaning. Laws are made up of words.

The entire Supreme Court would do well to think hard about the word "person."


U.S. Code, Section 1, Chapter 1:

In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, unless the context indicates otherwise—
...
the words “person” and “whoever” include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals;


Laws use words, and words mean things, and in laws the word "person" means corporations. That's not the Supreme Court's decision, it's Congress's.

walter said...

She has job security..but still..doesn't want her chums to speak ill of her.
She will hold her biases more closely to robe from now on...aka "circumspect"