Patterico's Pontifications

11/23/2007

L.A. Times Puff Piece on Justice Stevens

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,Judiciary — Patterico @ 5:49 pm



The L.A. Times has a puff piece on Justice Stevens today. Typical of David Savage pieces, the article warns readers of the danger that the Supreme Court could become even more conservative than it is now . . . if you can imagine that!

The sucking up starts here:

In the last decade, however, he has emerged as the strongest voice for the court’s shrinking liberal wing. Stevens supports the strict separation of church and state, a woman’s right to choose abortion and strong protection for the environment. This year he wrote the opinion for the 5-4 majority that said the government may restrict greenhouse gases as a threat to the environment.

The court’s last remaining World War II veteran, he also has insisted that the Bush administration must abide by the standards of the Geneva Convention in its treatment of prisoners in the war on terrorism.

“As he sees it, he hasn’t moved over the years; the court has moved,” said Diane Amann, a former clerk for Stevens and a visiting law professor at UC Berkeley.

And continues here:

In the meantime, lawyers at the high court will have to contend with Stevens’ knack for asking questions that reveal the weakness in their argument.

“His questions often start with an unassuming and gentle lead-in, but he has ability to cut to the heart of a case,” U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, the government’s chief lawyer before the high court, said.

. . . .

“He seems to get younger every year,” Clement said in the interview.

Northwestern University law professor Steven Calabresi, a co-founder of the conservative Federalist Society, said: “He is absolutely remarkable for the vigor and intellectual energy he brings to the job. And I say that as someone who doesn’t always agree with him.

And continues:

An early riser, Stevens likes to work at his computer at home for several hours before coming to the court. While most of the justices rely heavily on their clerks for writing, Stevens prides himself in writing the first draft of all of his opinions and dissents. He also keeps active in several sports and plays in competitive bridge tournaments.

I’m sure Justice Stevens is a very nice and smart man, and I don’t begrudge him a pleasant little pat on the back from his liberal pals at the L.A. Times.

But can anyone imagine the Los Angeles Times running a similarly sycophantic puff piece on Justice Scalia or Justice Thomas?

11 Responses to “L.A. Times Puff Piece on Justice Stevens”

  1. i’m not at all sure there’s enough nice things to say about justice scalia or justice thomas to add up to a sycophantic puff piece.

    assistant devil's advocate (61f434)

  2. “i’m not at all sure there’s enough nice things to say about justice scalia or justice thomas to add up to a sycophantic puff piece.”

    He’s just ‘Times Bashing’. Patty finds no redeeming qualities in their pages and thusly refrains from giving any credit to them. I feel certain he could find tons of good stuff to say about Scalia and Thomas, however.

    Semanticleo (0aaaec)

  3. It’s disingenuous for Mr. Savage to emphasize (in the 4th paragraph) that Justice Stevens was a member of the “moderate-to-conservative coalition that restored the death penalty as an option for states,” while failing to note that Stevens wrote the opinion in Atkins v Virginia and concurred in Roper v Simmons, two cases that limited the death penalty. Unless, of course, by “restored the death penalty,” Mr. Savage means that Justice Stevens has worked to undermine the states’ ability to impose it.

    Furthermore, when Diane Amann claims: “he [Stevens] hasn’t moved over the years; the court has moved,” I take it she wasn’t referring to Stevens’ position on the death penalty.

    DRJ (973069)

  4. Assistant Devil’s Advocate, I’m assuming that there is enough nice things to say even about you to add up to the kind of vapid puff piece we see here. So I think your comment, at best, lacks substance.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  5. As does ada in most of his mouthings.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  6. assistant devil’s advocate, i’m assuming that there is enough nice things to say even about you to add up to the kind of vapid puff piece we see here.

    ok spqr, let’s find out! i’ll start by giving you bright, funny, goodlooking and virile, and i’ll be back in a day to see what you’ve built from that foundation.

    assistant devil's advocate (f91344)

  7. Also in the editorial section, the LAT said how awful it was that OConnor left the bench, to be replaced by awful conservatives. Since liberalism cannot win at the ballot box, and can only be implemented by authoritarian judicial imposition, you can understand why the changing SCOTUS composition has really got them worried.

    jack (81e410)

  8. More from the L.A. Slimes and its bilidge tank news service

    krazy kagu (1f0194)

  9. This is the same Justice Stevens who regretted he played a part in the termination of Admiral Isoruku Yamamoto; because it was unfair. I guess,
    Not surprisingly he ignored the Qurin, Merryman,
    Eisentrager precedents in both Hamdan and Hamdi; giving the likes of Hamdi (a native of the New Orleans/Morgan City area)who was caught fighting
    US forces in Afghanistan; more rights than US soldiers

    narciso (c36902)

  10. Our esteemed host wrote:

    But can anyone imagine the Los Angeles Times running a similarly sycophantic puff piece on Justice Scalia or Justice Thomas?

    Well, no, of course not, because their routines are so different. Where Justice Stevens is:

    An early riser, (who) likes to work at his computer at home for several hours before coming to the court,

    Justice Scalia rises early to take a walk and try to find some puppies to kicj, whilst Justice Thomas is awake at the crack of dawn to try to evict some single black woman from her Section 8 housing.

    Surely you knew that!

    Dana (556f76)

  11. This piece strikes me as relatively balanced, at least by Dog Trainer standards. After all, they admitted the guy was a “liberal,” not a “centrist,” a “mainstream,” or any of the other typical mumbo jumbo. That said, the notion that Stevens himself hasn’t moved politically over the years is insane. If Stevens ’03 had the same views as Stevens ’78, affirmative action would be history.

    Xrlq (8b1564)


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