Monday, May 10, 2010

Elena Kagan is Obama's Harriet Miers


Elena Kagan, Obama's Supreme Court Nominee

Remember the shock when George W Bush nominated Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court ~ a Bush loyalist with virtually no legal opinions. Now think Elena Kagan ~ an Obama loyalist with virtually no legal opinions but old ties with Goldman Sachs and a big advocate of executive power: Allen L Roland

Why would George W Bush nominate a blank legal page to the Supreme Court like Harriet Miers ? Because Bush needed to count on the ultimate legal protection of the Supreme Court and he knew his loyalist, Harriet Miers, would provide that protection against his executive abuses of power ~ like indefinite detention without trial of seemingly illegally renditioned Muslims.

Why would Barack Obama nominate a blank legal page to the Supreme court like Elena Kagan? Because Obama needs to count on the ultimate legal protection of the Supreme Court and he knows his loyalist, Elena Kagan, would provide protection against his inherited executive abuses of power from the Cheney/Bush administration ~ like indefinite detention without a trial of those same illegally renditioned Muslims.

During her hearings to be confirmed as Solicitor General, the New York Times paraphrases Kagan as saying "that someone suspected of helping finance Al Qaeda should be subject to battlefield law ~ indefinite detention without a trial ~ even if he were captured in a place like the Philippines rather than a physical battle zone." --Charlie Savage,
Obama's War on Terror May Resemble Bush's in Some Areas, The New York Times, 17 Feb 2009. (Wikipedia).

The Times' Charlie Savage
explains that executive power is one key area where Obama's choice could bring about major changes to the Court, given that his selection would replace Justice Stevens, who was so stalwart about imposing limits on such power. As Savage writes, Kagan's record (to the extent such a thing even exists) "suggests she might generally be more sympathetic toward the White House than Justice Stevens."

Sound familiar ? It should be for in Washington, DC it's all about corporate power and the preservation of executive power as well as any means toward that end ~ as Justice Elena Kagan most certainly would accomplish.

Glenn Greenwald writes in Salon THE CASE AGAINST ELENA KAGAN, 4/13/10 " The prospect that Stevens will be replaced by Elena Kagan has led to the growing perception that Barack Obama will actually take a Supreme Court dominated by Justices Scalia (Reagan), Thomas (Bush 41), Roberts (Bush 43), Alito (Bush 43) and Kennedy (Reagan) and move it further to the Right .... replacing Stevens with Kagan risks moving the Court to the Right, perhaps substantially to the Right (by "the Right," I mean: closer to the Bush/Cheney vision of Government and the Thomas/Scalia approach to executive power and law)."

And as AlterNet's Marjorie Cohn points out today ~ " While Bush was shredding the Constitution with his unprecedented assertions of executive power, law professors throughout the country voiced strong objections. Kagan remained silent "

Kagan needs to be questioned in depth about the limits of executive power in light of the decade of known abuses of that same executive power by the Cheney/Bush administration ~ and obviously still condoned by the Obama administration.

In summary, the Kagan nomination appears to be another Obama sell out to the right as well as another slap in the face for liberals, who wanted Diane Wood, but, in reality, they were thrown under the Obama bus a long time ago.

Allen L Roland

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Allen L Roland is a practicing psychotherapist, author and lecturer who also shares a daily political and social commentary on his
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1 comment:

  1. I don't know about Kagan, but I think you are dead wrong about Miers. I thought at the time, and still think, that Miers was a stalking horse - that Bush knew she could not pass the first litmus test, but that he had to nominate a woman because it was Justice O'Connor's seat. Alito was already chosen for the next slot, however, so the last thing in the world he wanted to do was appoint a *qualified* woman; hence, Harriet Miers.

    According to the legal world's take on Kagan, she is wicked smart - that alone distinguishes her from Miers by a country mile.

    And don't rely overmuch on a prospective justice's previous work - remember, Earl Warren was a bedrock conservative until he began to hear the facts of the cases that came before the Supreme Court in the early 1960's.