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Author Topic: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"  (Read 963 times)

ManBearPig

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Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« on: May 23, 2009, 08:28:01 AM »
I checked out Robert Bork's book "A Time to Speak" and read most of the parts related to constitutional law. I haven't taken constitutional law yet but I have a good enough understanding of it to realize that Bork is absolutely insane. I knew that I wasn't going to agree with his positions on just about anything, but I expected to read some persuasive arguments in support of said positions. I disagree with most every opinion Scalia writes, but even though those opinions/dissents support some pretty absurd outcomes he definitely has the intellectual prowess to make me think twice (more like three or four times) about my opinion on a certain case...Something Bork utterly failed to do in his book. He didn't give any legitimate support for his opposition to just about everything positive the Supreme Court has ever done. He sounded like Rush Limbaugh, not a legal scholar. Familiar buzz-words & themes throughout the book included: "liberal-elites", "constitutional-nihilism" and my personal favorite "the intelligentsia". I'm not trying to offend anyone who shares his approach to the Constitution, but in my opinion it is scary that he got nominated to be on the Supreme Court. Just wanted to get some other folks opinion on him, especially if you read the book.

non parata est

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2009, 05:17:17 PM »
Interesting.  I thought he came off pretty reasonable in "The Tempting of America."  At the very least, he offered some fundamental reasons for accepting and originalist interpretation.  I wonder what changed.
Quote from: Lionel Hutz, Esq.
Well he's had it in for me ever since I kinda ran over his dog... Well, replace the word "kinda" with "repeatedly" and the word "dog" with "son."

USC313

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2009, 09:01:22 PM »
I disagree with most every opinion Scalia writes, but even though those opinions/dissents support some pretty absurd outcomes he definitely has the intellectual prowess to make me think twice (more like three or four times) about my opinion on a certain case.

It's difficult to take your thread seriously with a comment like that. Just what "absurd outcomes" are you referring to? Your opinion is an example of how people tend to throw words around too casually without thinking about their meaning. According to you, most opinions or dissents written by Scalia are absurd--commonly defined as "utterly or obviously senseless, illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably foolish or false." I'm failing to understand how a Supreme Court justice that compels you think "three or four times" about your own opinion on a given issue at the same time writes "absurd" opinions/dissents.

Keep a few things in mind: (1) If Scalia is writing a majority opinion, there's at least 4 other justices who agreed with his supposed absurdity. Why all the hate for one justice?; (2) As you go through law school, you'll realize that the bulk of SCOTUS's jurisprudence is not "hot-button" social issues, but fairly mundane, federal statutory problems that people can reasonably disagree on--without it becoming a wedge issue. True, a "conservative" or "liberal" sub-text/ideology may drive some of these opinions, but the consequences of their outcome are simply not as important to the larger American society; (3) You have to admit that Scalia does write some of the most colorful and intellectually rigorous opinions on the bench--something that has consistently frustrated liberals in their attempts to frame anyone of a conservative bent as uneducated & unenlightened; (4) Among those who actually pay attention to the Court's jurisprudence, those who blindly "hate" Scalia come across as the uneducated and unenlightened ones. Hating Scalia is a bandwagon issue for lay people. If Scalia really makes you second guess your opinions--don't be afraid to agree with them despite the fact that it may not square with your liberal script; (5) Many non-lawyer "intellectuals" don't like Scalia because he is unapologetic--he argues against certain "progressive" ideologies --and he does so forcefully and better than they ever could (i.e. a big F-U to the so-called liberal elite). When they can't match brains, they resort to brawn.

By the way, some opinions that Scalia has either joined in, or has authored that you'd likely agree with include: Crawford v. Washington, 541 U.S. 36 and Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397. Have a look.



Private David Lewis

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2009, 10:36:04 PM »
I thought Bork was better in Tempting, too.  He at least tried to take on some of the more sophisticated arguments against originalism. 
The main partner in their Entertainment Law group went to CLS, but he was Fiske and on LR, so be careful.  You don't want to set yourself goals that are too high.

ManBearPig

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2009, 05:24:27 AM »
USC313:


USC313

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2009, 12:53:09 PM »
Yes?

USC313

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Re: Robert Bork Book: "A Time to Speak"
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2009, 06:31:37 PM »
I'm not trying to offend anyone who shares his approach to the Constitution, but in my opinion it is scary that he got nominated to be on the Supreme Court. Just wanted to get some other folks opinion on him, especially if you read the book.

I haven't read the book so I can't comment on why Bork didn't provide any sort of reasoned defense for his opinions. That being said, most legal scholars--whatever their ideological bent--tend agree that Bork is particularly brilliant and one of the foremost legal thinkers of the 2nd half of the 20th century. I would think that played a part in his nomination.