The GOP & the billionaires who fund them learned their lesson. Never again would they allow a rightwing justice to stray beyond the rigid ideological boundaries set at that justices’ confirmation…
The Supremes may now be the most corrupt branch of the Federal Government and that's saying something! I saw this all the time in corporate law; the attorneys on a deal made good $ but didn't make the $ that the players made. $3-5 million a year is about right for a legitimate 'white shoe' law firm senior partner in NYC (maybe a few million more for the highest partners). In 2008 when everyone went under, the lawyers were scrambling to get paid while Cerberus, et al. made out with billions. So the lawyers get jealous; they want the billionaire lifestyle. Skiing in Gstaad, not Vail (really! I knew a senior partner who went to the Swiss Alps every year for skiing). They get in on the deals even though it's against our code of professional responsibility. How on earth did that scumbag from Georgia who was one of Trump's impeachment attorneys get paid $68 MILLION over a few years? He's a crook, that's how. Just like Scalia, Thomas, Alito....
God Bless you, Thom! This is such. Spot-on article!
Take a small category of elite, powerful people - say, Republican mega-donors who did not like trump. Then of that category, limit it to those who funded opposition research to defeat trump's nomination, then of those folks limit it further to only those who spoke out strongly against trump calling him idiotic or some such names.
Then, of whoever is left in this category of the trump-bashing, trump opposed gop donors, limit it further only to:
- those who received an invitation to dine personally with trump in the White House during his first year of office.
And, alas, we are left with only one Republican donor. His name is Paul Singer.
Today we have SOME lefty media that has mentioned Singer. Perhaps this will become a trend. There's SO MUCH MORE to say.
In three years, it will be the 30th anniversary of the nsmia law, enacted in '96 and signed by President Clinton, which had such an enormous impact on the economy, politics, everything in this country, that it's just impossible to underestimate it when we combine the change with citizens united. Result? we have hedge fund magnates basically running the country for the last decade.
So we barely heard about who was funding Ted Cruz when he was going around the country talking about how much of a problem he had with "New York values." Of course it was a New York billionaire named Robert Mercer!
Many Harvard people like Tom Cotton, who serve from states like Arkansas they also have a connection to people that went to Harvard like Paul Singer.
But without jumping ahead of myself, too much, I'm going to point out one thing that is of critical importance for people to know at this point. Paul singer was an attorney before he became one of the most notorious of all hedge fund operators. Paul singer went to Harvard law school and worked at Fried, Frank. Paul understands the importance of law to everything involving the economy, business and related political aspects , and knows how to manipulate and mold these things better than just about anybody on this planet.
One of the great great features of hedge funds for these folks, and the lack of hedge fund regulation, for these billionaires is their ability to hide, an ability not to serve on public boards if they don't want to, the ability to stay behind the scenes, and manipulate politics, and manipulate the economy and manipulate large public companies.
When Jack Dorsey stepped down from Twitter, there were all kinds of media accounts - all focused on Jack Dorsey. Nobody I am aware in the media focused on the fact that it was actually Paul singer's firm that had invested in twitter, got a seat on its board, and then helped orchestrate the end of Dorsey.
There's so much more to say about all this, but we're going to end here today. The fact that this major publicity about the real world of hedge fund power has now come out before the public is quite an important thing.
SCOTUS Influencers - Is It Impersonal Bribery or Friendly Perpetual Peer Pressure?
It's FPPP. Thanks Thom.
Follow the connections and favors shared between billionaires like Paul Singer, Harlan Crowe and Charles Koch and Supreme Court Justices and what they get it return with this interactive Relationship Map. https://thedemlabs.org/2023/06/21/supreme-court-fishy-business-follow-the-money-samuel-alito-paul-singer/
On oct 11, 2015 nyt published a report in the early money going into 2016 race. One million dollars or more donors to super pacs (a year before election) were researched and it was observed:
- about 400 families account for an enormous portion of all super pac money;
- the nouvelle rich, primarily from fracking and hedge funds- create a newer cast of characters than typically in us history, where great family wealth traditionally dominated the largest donors. Now, it's "new rich" like Paul Singer who dominate.
Open secrets has several articles and research tools where you can see millions upon millions of singer's right wing donations, but also an article in which it explains that the network of donors will usually pile on after singer.
THAT is influence and THAT is power.
When reviewing lists of the largest donors note that in some years these donors intentionally withhold in order to assert more influence, keep candidates in line.
These justices need to be impeached!!! At the very least, moving forward, they need to recuse themselves from cases involving their “friends”. Better yet, pay their own way when they vacation with their billionaire “friends”.
There has got to be someone out there who heard these billionaires discussing their intentions to “bribe” these judges. We know what is happening, but that would show intent. Maybe then it could be prosecuted.
Thank you for once again explaining a deeper connection to reality. I also really appreciate the historical through-line. Truth fits together so well. Although, the picture painted is not always pretty. Ruthie B
Even though it's not mandatory to be a lawyer or judge to be on SCOTUS, most are. Law must have had incredible meaning in some of the most significant years of their lives. We all get caught-up in the rigors of family, politics, and just being busy. As we age and mellow, some reflect on their roots.
The phrase "EQUAL JUSTICE UNDER THE LAW" is literally carved into the Supreme Court facade. That would be one of the constant reminders that make them understand the goal and the weight of their actions. Being surrounded by clerks and people that look up to them would be another. A mentally healthy person is going to understand so much more after observing history in the making and learning more about people in their lifetime.
Damaged people with growing resentments are easy marks. They are not reflecting or focusing on their love of the law or justice. Weak. Greedy. Pathetic.
I watched Joshua Kaplan from ProPublica on C-SPAN. He spoke to judges and they were appalled about what they were seeing concerning the Justices. They won't even accept lunch from lawyers that appear before them. They also explained recusal by asking the reporter if he would like to appear before a judge that goes on vacation with the person suing him.
The hypothesis as presented is completely tenable and checks out in terms of the historical record. I would not quibble except to say that there has been a tectonic shift in the reactionary direction from more sensible and sane conservatism which has affected the candidates for offices and the Supreme Court, making them less open to argument and more heavily weighted toward authoritarianism, religious extremism, elitism, power-seeking, and ethnocentrism or xenophobic sentimentality. I have an article from about 1995 by a law professor from UNLV named Henderson which traces the trend of the "conservatives" on the high court radically toward authoritarianism (which I could locate with a little effort). These people see themselves as special, superior, privileged, and more competent, so it makes perfect sense that they should have all the perks and favors and that billionaires would want to share their company and extend generous offers of trips and vacations with them. The influence starts with grades and attention is school and in most cases now in circles which have religion, piety, and sanctimony at the center. Power and privilege are in their culture and they have no reason to question it or to bother to think consciously about it. Did I mention that authoritarianism's influence starts with schools which are necessarily hierarchical by "virtue" of their establishment and maintenance under the law?
I've referred to Kagan's rejection of lox & bagels more than once. Her example reflects the 18th century English Common Law meaning of bribery and is the meaning of Bribery in the Constitution. Nonetheless in 2017 McDonnell Kagan joined in the unanimous ruling that accepting 200k$ of gifts was just dandy so long as you were not so addlepated as to give quid pro quo. Why? Stare Decisis. 'Honest' judges respect Precedents created by Federalist Society terrorists intent on creating a fascist state. That single precedent neuters the Constitutional meaning of bribery. Hence all the Sound and Fury in Congress and Media (including your arguments Thom) signifies nothing. Nothing more than Alito's public embarrassment in a snappish reply - insulting his gracious host.
Now there are rules that apply to all Federal judges - but are not enforced on the fracking Supremes for wont of a higher Court (or a modicum of Congressional initiative). This is detailed in https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2023/03/time-for-supreme-court-to-adopt-ethics-rules/ So when Kavanaugh was elevated, the 80 or so Ethics Violations that he had accrued in his Circuit Court time - vanished.
Astonishingly the wonton destruction of the basis of representative democracy, the control of political bribery, is widely recognized - e.g. Zephyr Teachout notes that Quid Pro Quo bribery arose in mid 20th century contract law - yet No Recourse is even considered.
Is that how we let the world end? For that is the Clear and Present danger as we rush into the intersection of fracking corporate fascism and Climate Collapse induced by the frackers. [Briefly: State and Corporate Fascism are distinct realizations encompassed in Mussolini's succinct definition of fascism as the merger of State and corporate power. I see the planned 2024 election as a contest between Corp. Fascism represented by the appeaser/collaborator Biden and the folks who would be Fuhrer. Disruption of the DNC plan is essential.]
The only obligation the Supreme Court is bound by is their Oath to the Constitution. That is more than enough. Just as surely as Article 3 Section 1 asserts that "...Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour..." it asserts the contrapositive "...Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall lose their Offices by bad Behaviour..."
As is my wont I self-identify: Tom@TomWellsForCongress.com (FL CD3)
All capitalist Nations end with the robber barons in charge. Only a socialist Nation can be civilized and stand the test of time. That is why the robber barons don't like the poor to think rationally and always oppose education while keeping them drunk on religion. As the supreme Court justices are being groomed with money, so have the masses been since world war II. We have the truth on our side and God as well. We are like David and Goliath. Hopefully if we can spread the truth and enlighten the ignorant, we can defeat them with 1/10 of the money they spend. We need some support from benevolent billionaires if there are any, to get started. With all the creative talent the left has, surely we could make some 30 second commercials educating the trumpsters what a dictatorship is. And asking for donations to keep the commercials going. So if we start out small, it could mushroom into quite a project and unite all the godly people, even if they don't believe there is a God. Those antenna TV channels must be reasonably priced, God knows there is constant lawyer commercials and paid products commercials. Advertising during the Western TV shows and movies, could reach a lot of right wingers who can't afford cable.