FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Clocking the Court

The rapidly unfolding melodrama attendant to the sudden death of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Scalia brings to mind professional football metaphors.

Conveniently forgetting to remember that in 1987 a Democratic senate unanimously approved lame duck Ronald Reagan’s nomination of Anthony Kennedy to the Supreme Court 97-0, the Repugnantcan Party and its fellow travelers now brandish the meme that Barack Obama has no right to put forth a nominee to replace the iconic arch-conservative constitutional quarterback, and even if he did, they claim to have no duty to consider that nomination. Why, they argue? Because a year from now Obama will be history, but the Supreme Court endures to referee the game called Fedball.

Of course the barely concealed subtext is that Obama is a foreign-born half-breed Muslim poseur who usurped the presidency and thus deserves no deference whatsoever. And the unspoken assumption is that he will be succeeded by one of the clueless GOP (“Gnomes on Parade”) pretenders to the throne in November, who will then nominate a patriot with the wisdom of Solomon to the nation’s highest bench.

But just for a moment suppose they are wrong, and Sanders or Clinton—or even that hoarse whisperer Michael Bloomberg—takes the November election. It could, and probably will happen, you know. Mitch McConnell and most other Gnomes must realize that. They follow the polls too, but it doesn’t matter for them because they won’t be satisfied until the Federal Government is completely paralyzed. It wasn’t enough for them to spend seven years defunding the executive branch, holding the Treasury hostage over the debt ceiling, repealing Obamacare, and sandbagging dozens of judicial and cabinet nominees; they still have yet to overthrow the government of the United States. And so, their fourth quarter game plan aims take all: cripple the Supreme Court by cutting its lineup.

With just eight justices on the field, we’ll have gridlock on the judicial gridiron. Most cases they hear will likely come to split decisions that move the ball back to the fifty yard line. Conservatives hoping to score in some of them were counting on Nino to carry the ball into the liberal end zone and win them for the gyppers of democracy. Now that their star player lies in state, all they can do is stare into cameras threatening to take the ball and go home.

Suppose in some big NFL playoff New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady gets clocked by an opposing lineman and, unthinkably and tragically, breaks his neck. Would the other side—say the Carolina Seahawks—insist that New England has no right to field a guy from their bench and so must forfeit the game? That’s the sort of one-year timeout that the GOP is calling for in Fedball. And if that playbook makes sports fans too restive, they’ll declare that the only way they’ll resume the game is for Obama to field one of their own players, hoping for a Hail Mary win for the gyppers.

The entire GOP team should be drug tested. They are clearly performing outside the limits of their endurance and must be on something. If this were baseball, there’d be a commissioner to make the call. But this is American political football, where team owners make the rules and a tie is as good as a win.

More articles by:

Geoff Dutton is an ex-geek turned writer and editor. He hails from Boston and writes about whatever distortions of reality strike his fancy. Currently, he’s pedaling a novel chronicling the lives and times of members of a cell of terrorists in Europe, completing a collection of essays on high technology delusions, and can be found barking at Progressive Pilgrim Review.

September 24, 2018
Jonathan Cook
Hiding in Plain Sight: Why We Cannot See the System Destroying Us
Gary Leupp
All the Good News (Ignored by the Trump-Obsessed Media)
Robert Fisk
I Don’t See How a Palestinian State Can Ever Happen
Barry Brown
Pot as Political Speech
Lara Merling
Puerto Rico’s Colonial Legacy and Its Continuing Economic Troubles
Patrick Cockburn
Iraq’s Prime Ministers Come and Go, But the Stalemate Remains
William Blum
The New Iraq WMD: Russian Interference in US Elections
Julian Vigo
The UK’s Snoopers’ Charter Has Been Dealt a Serious Blow
Joseph Matten
Why Did Global Economic Performance Deteriorate in the 1970s?
Zhivko Illeieff
The Millennial Label: Distinguishing Facts from Fiction
Thomas Hon Wing Polin – Gerry Brown
Xinjiang : The New Great Game
Binoy Kampmark
Casting Kavanaugh: The Trump Supreme Court Drama
Max Wilbert
Blue Angels: the Naked Face of Empire
Weekend Edition
September 21, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond
Hurricane Florence and 9.7 Million Pigs
Andrew Levine
Israel’s Anti-Semitism Smear Campaign
Paul Street
Laquan McDonald is Being Tried for His Own Racist Murder
Brad Evans
What Does It Mean to Celebrate International Peace Day?
Nick Pemberton
With or Without Kavanaugh, The United States Is Anti-Choice
Jim Kavanagh
“Taxpayer Money” Threatens Medicare-for-All (And Every Other Social Program)
Jonathan Cook
Palestine: The Testbed for Trump’s Plan to Tear up the Rules-Based International Order
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: the Chickenhawks Have Finally Come Back Home to Roost!
David Rosen
As the Capitalist World Turns: From Empire to Imperialism to Globalization?
Jonah Raskin
Green Capitalism Rears Its Head at Global Climate Action Summit
James Munson
On Climate, the Centrists are the Deplorables
Robert Hunziker
Is Paris 2015 Already Underwater?
Arshad Khan
Will Their Ever be Justice for Rohingya Muslims?
Jill Richardson
Why Women Don’t Report Sexual Assault
Dave Clennon
A Victory for Historical Accuracy and the Peace Movement: Not One Emmy for Ken Burns and “The Vietnam War”
W. T. Whitney
US Harasses Cuba Amid Mysterious Circumstances
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
Things That Make Sports Fans Uncomfortable
George Capaccio
Iran: “Snapping Back” Sanctions and the Threat of War
Kenneth Surin
Brexit is Coming, But Which Will It Be?
Louis Proyect
Moore’s “Fahrenheit 11/9”: Entertaining Film, Crappy Politics
Ramzy Baroud
Why Israel Demolishes: Khan Al-Ahmar as Representation of Greater Genocide
Ben Dangl
The Zapatistas’ Dignified Rage: Revolutionary Theories and Anticapitalist Dreams of Subcommandante Marcos
Ron Jacobs
Faith, Madness, or Death
Bill Glahn
Crime Comes Knocking
Terry Heaton
Pat Robertson’s Hurricane “Miracle”
Dave Lindorff
In Montgomery County PA, It’s Often a Jury of White People
Louis Yako
From Citizens to Customers: the Corporate Customer Service Culture in America 
William Boardman
The Shame of Dianne Feinstein, the Courage of Christine Blasey Ford 
Ernie Niemi
Logging and Climate Change: Oregon is Appalachia and Timber is Our Coal
Jessicah Pierre
Nike Says “Believe in Something,” But Can It Sacrifice Something, Too?
Paul Fitzgerald - Elizabeth Gould
Weaponized Dreams? The Curious Case of Robert Moss
Olivia Alperstein
An Environmental 9/11: the EPA’s Gutting of Methane Regulations
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail