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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

A (Big) Piece of a Heart, ANY Heart ... Missing in Action

I love what Michael O'Hare so eloquently wrote at The Reality Based Community in his column "A Piece Missing" about Samuel Alito (the next Supreme Court justice without a doubt):

"He doesn't have a screw loose; what he has is a piece missing, conspicuously, radiantly, displaying the absence of any sense of, well, justice. Not a case came up for discussion in which he registered that one or another outcome was just wrong, outrageous to a sense of decency, or to him. He's on record in a memo as believing that to shoot an eighth grader, known not to be armed, who was trying to climb over a fence in escape, is a proper use of deadly force by a policeman. In a discussion of immigration cases that have been regularly occasioning inexcusable, vile, un-American heartbreak on people who missed obscure deadlines or violated arcane requirements, all he could say was that the courts get bad transcripts and it was hard to find translators for some of the plaintiffs, but that was a problem for Congress. It wasn't exactly Pilate washing his hands, but the man appears to be completely comfortable dealing with frightful social wrongs by moving the issue down the hall to another office . . .

...A smart, decent, small man....He will focus enormous rational power on issues not central to the cases before him, and solve problems peripheral to the work we need the court to do."
Thanks to Howie Kurtz at WaPo for the heads up on the O'Hare column. It deserves wide circulation and discussion -- (although I think O'Hare was being ultra-generous by calling Alito 'decent' given his vociferous defense of the status quo in favor of all entities strong, rich and powerful).

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