How Crazy Is Too Crazy to Be Executed

By: Wednesday October 15, 2014 3:08 pm

In her latest piece, Stephanie Mencimer of Mother Jones sheds light on the case of Scott Panetti—a death row prisoner who Texas wants to execute despite a decades-long history of severe mental illness and serious questions remaining about his competency to be executed.


Posse Comitatus and the Fourth Amendment

By: Tuesday September 30, 2014 7:35 am

Back in pre-Constitution America, the British army would burst into the homes and businesses of American colonists.
The searches would often be destructive, and intended so. Some of the time the point was to seize incriminating “revolutionary” materials, many times the point was simply to harass and threaten people the Crown feared and wanted to send a message to. It was in direct response to such invasions of freedom that the Founders wrote in the Fourth Amendment “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated…”

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Erwin Chemerinsky, The Case Against The Supreme Court

By: Sunday September 28, 2014 1:59 pm

So often in modern conversation you hear complaints about how out of touch and damaging the Supreme Court has become. Whether from Bush v. Gore, to Citizen’s United, to the more recently destructive Hobby Lobby decision, to name a bare few, the cries against SCOTUS are getting louder by the term. Yet far too often that hue and cry is by lay people and concerned activists, and the scholars and professors serve up a more nuanced take with pulled punches steeped in complicated case law and argument. Not Dean Chemerinsky. This is a full on broadside against what the court has become and, maybe, what it always has been once the romanticized veneer of reverence is stripped away.

Another Reminder of How Stupid Lifetime Judicial Terms Are

By: Wednesday September 24, 2014 3:20 pm

I find the idea of any unelected individual having over half a century of incredible influence deeply disturbing. I want neither Ginsburg or Antonin Scalia to have that level of power. This is why basically every other democracy on earth doesn’t use the idiotic idea of lifetime appointments for judges. They tend to use either one very long set term or a firm retirement age. At least that way a Supreme Court justices is effectively removed from the process of determining their replacement.

Letting the Rich Take All The Money

By: Sunday September 14, 2014 11:15 am

Someone should think about how we can make life better for everyone, even if it means the rich don’t get all the money.

The Best Hope for the Future

By: Sunday September 7, 2014 11:19 am

The best hope of the future: the brave people who take action in the face of misery.

Obamacare Subsidy Case to Go Before Full D.C. Circuit Court

By: Thursday September 4, 2014 8:55 am

In a big win for the the Obama administration the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit granted a rare en banc rehearing in Halbig v. Burwell, meaning the issue will be revisited by the full court. The oral arguments are scheduled for December 17th.

Earlier this year in a surprise decision two of the judges on a three judge panel ruled that the Affordable Care Act subsidies could not go to individuals in states with federally-run exchanges.

The Supreme Conservatives

By: Sunday August 31, 2014 11:01 am

Welcome to the Serf World under the Big Five Conservative Supreme Court hacks.

How Public Feels About Obamacare Next Year Will Be More Important Than Halbig Decision

By: Wednesday July 23, 2014 3:30 pm

I’m fairly confident this partial decision by the D.C. Circuit on Halbig v. Burwell will not stand. It is obviously absurd from a legal perspective, which is why other courts have ruled against the idea. But if by some miracle the opponents of the Affordable Care Act do ultimately prevail, there is a real question of how much damage it could really do.

Parallel Construction: Unconstitutional NSA Searches Deny Due Process

By: Wednesday July 23, 2014 2:18 pm

The NSA sits at the nexus of violations of both the Fourth and Fifth Amendments with a legal dodge called Parallel Construction.

Parallel Construction is a technique used by law enforcement to hide the fact that evidence in a criminal case originated with the NSA. In its simplest form, the NSA collects information showing say a Mr. Anderson committed a crime. This happens most commonly in drug cases.

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