Patterico's Pontifications


L.A. County Sheriff’s Deputy Killed

Filed under: Crime,Real Life — Patterico @ 11:35 pm

The L.A. Times reports: Sheriff’s Deputy Killed in Hawaiian Gardens. The deputy’s name was Jerry Ortiz:

A Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed this afternoon after he knocked on the door in an apartment complex in Hawaiian Gardens, authorities said.

Deputy Jerry Ortiz, 35, a 15-year veteran of the department, was shot in the head as he was speaking to a woman in the apartment, said Undersheriff Larry Waldie.

Deputies believe they know who the suspect is and are searching for him.

The shooting occurred about 3:10 p.m. in the 12200 block of 223rd Street. Ortiz was airlifted to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. But Waldie said doctors said Ortiz was probably killed instantly.

The news stories are all reporting that Ortiz has two sons, and was recently married. None has yet reported that this is not the first time Ortiz had a gun pointed at him:


Professor Bainbridge: Another Defector from the Coalition of the Chillin’??

Filed under: Court Decisions,Judiciary — Patterico @ 9:56 pm

Professor Bainbridge says:

As the recent Kelo decision illustrates, it will be essential that President Bush pick somebody reliably – and permanently – conservative when he has the chance to fill a Supreme Court vacancy.

Yes it will, Professor. Of course, that’s going to be difficult, due to the recent Republican capitulation on filibusters of judicial nominees — a capitulation that you supported.

Bainbridge continues:

Yet, the Democrats want Bush to unilaterally disarm:

“The way to avoid the divisiveness and discord that occurred over past judicial nominations is through consensus and cooperation in the selection of future candidates,” the Senate Democrats said in a letter sent to the White House on Thursday. (Link)

The hypocrisy is ludicrious, as Senator Cornyn pointed out:

“Senior Democrats continue to demand a future role in selecting the president’s judicial nominees, while preventing the confirmation of current nominees,” Cornyn said.

Bush should just say: “Sorry guys, but the GOP won the Presidency, the Senate, and the House. It’s our turn to choose.”

Yes, he should. Unfortunately, when he has said that in the past, the Democrats have responded with unconstitutional filibusters of his judicial candidates. Yet you stand four-square against the GOP’s taking action to eliminate that noxious practice.

Pray tell us, Professor Bainbridge. When the Democrats filibuster President Bush’s credentialed and reputable candidates for federal judgeships, and you oppose GOP action to break that outlandish and unconstitutional procedure, just how do you expect Bush and the GOP to say: “Sorry guys, but the GOP won the Presidency, the Senate, and the House. It’s our turn to choose.” How exactly do you expect the GOP to accomplish this?

Face it: if you and the other members of the “Coalition of the Chillin'” continue to have your way, we conservatives are going to have to sit still for more decisions like Kelo. SayUncle has had the guts to admit that he was wrong to join the coalition. He has withdrawn.

What do you say? Will you withdraw as well?

UPDATE: Bainbridge responds here. I respond to his response here.

Bainbridge Claims L.A. Times Misquoted Him

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 9:14 pm

Read the Good Professor’s beef here.

The Anti-Federalists

Filed under: Constitutional Law,Court Decisions,General — Angry Clam @ 8:03 pm

Patrick Carver from Southern Appeal makes an excellent point about Kelo and the greater role of judges by quoting Anti-Federalist No. 80, which reads:

Not only will the constitution justify the courts in inclining to this mode of explaining it, but they will be interested in using this latitude of interpretation. Every body of men invested with office are tenacious of power; they feel interested, and hence it has become a kind of maxim, to hand down their offices, with all its rights and privileges, unimpaired to their successors. The same principle will influence them to extend their power, and increase their rights; this of itself will operate strongly upon the courts to give such a meaning to the constitution in all cases where it can possibly be done, as will enlarge the sphere of their own authority. Every extension of the power of the general legislature, as well as of the judicial powers, will increase the powers of the courts; and the dignity and importance of the judges, will be in proportion to the extent and magnitude of the powers they exercise. I add, it is highly probable the emolument of the judges will be increased, with the increase of the business they will have to transact and its importance. From these considerations the judges will be interested to extend the powers of the courts, and to construe the constitution as much as possible, in such a way as to favor it; and that they will do it, appears probable.

Like Mr. Carver, I think that such statements were very prophetic.

Property Rights Decision: A Reminder of the Importance of Good Judges

Filed under: Court Decisions — Patterico @ 6:41 am

As a rule, I don’t criticize court decisions until I’ve read them, and I haven’t had time to read the Supreme Court’s decision in Kelo v. City of New London. I see people across the blogosphere (on both sides of the fence) are angry. Based on a quick glance at the lineup and the quickest possible skimming of the opinions, I have two points that don’t violate my rule against criticizing an unread decision:

1) It’s tough to condemn this decision and support the Court’s abortion-rights jurisprudence. Why am I jumping to the topic of abortion? Stay with me; it’s not as much of a stretch as it sounds.

If you disagree with yesterday’s decision, it looks as though your problem is not so much with the decision per se, but with the law leading up to it. If you really think the Supreme Court needs to do something in this area, you have to be willing to allow the Court to reconsider a fairly long line of precedent, simply because you think it’s wrong.

If you are a Roe v. Wade supporter, this will cause you consistency problems, since the only conceivable principled justification for keeping that poorly reasoned decision around is respect for precedent. And the Roe precedent is only 32 years old; the troubling precedents in the “public use” area go back over 50 years.

The same thing goes for the recent medicinal marijuana decision, by the way. For all the blog-driven criticism of Justice Scalia’s position in that opinion, the majority’s argument was mostly an application and slight extension of pre-existing law. The problem lay more with the precedents than with the decision itself.

2) If you disagree with the decision, it’s time to get on board and support President Bush’s judges. President Bush has said that he wants to nominate judges in the mold of Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, both of whom dissented in this case. The majority was nothing more than the four liberals, plus Anthony Kennedy — the judge for whom I have the most contempt of all nine Justices.

Here I am speaking directly to any upset leftists, as well as to my friends the RINOs, including the Commissar, John Cole, Say Uncle, and Bill Ardolino.

I’d be willing to bet that any of the judicial nominees that the Democrats have filibustered would have voted for the view held by the minority.

If this decision upset you, let it serve as yet another reminder of the importance of having good judges in our federal courts. It’s a critical issue. Let’s start treating it like one.

UPDATE: Apologies to Jeff Goldstein for originally including him in the above list. As to the whole list, I sloppily conflated generalized RINO opinions (such as Jeff’s opinion on Schiavo) with softness on judges. Prompted by Bill Ardolino in the comments, I’ve gone back and looked at Jeff’s posts on the filibuster compromise issue again — and I do indeed recall reading his appropriately outraged reaction to the filibuster compromise. Reading these posts again — posts which, believe it or not, I did see the first time around — I am reminded that Jeff has been quite good on the judges issue. Indeed, his argument has been that the Schiavo flap would actually hurt Bush’s ability to get his judges through.

Apologies to Jeff.

I note that Uncle has withdrawn from the “Coalition of the Chillin’.” Good for him.

What about the rest of you in the Coalition?

UPDATE x2: I should note that my use of the term RINO is not meant as an insult. In the past I would have considered it as such, but I don’t any longer, now that the Commissar has appropriated the name to refer to his brand of moderate Republicans.

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