Thursday, August 04, 2005


The Federalist Society: What a bunch of Hacks. I really think we should just call them by their real name: The Republican Party.

From the Federalist Society web page:

Our Purpose: Law schools and the legal profession are currently strongly dominated by a form of orthodox liberal ideology which advocates a centralized and uniform society. While some members of the academic community have dissented from these views, by and large they are taught simultaneously with (and indeed as if they were) the law.

This may be one of the most poorly written pieces of tripe I have ever seen. Let’s break it down: “Law schools and the legal profession are currently strongly dominated by a form of orthodox liberal ideology which advocates a centralized and uniform society.” First note: there are currently 181 accredited law schools in the United States. The idea that they are “strongly dominated” by a liberal ideology is a joke, American law schools and their individual cultures vary widely. In addition one has to wonder who this “legal profession” is that is so easily lumped in with lawschools? The number of legal professionals and the groups they belong to number in the hundreds of thousands. To casually lump the “legal profession” into some type of “liberal” conspiracy is not only factually inaccurate it's just a fucking stupid thing to say.

This “liberal ideology” also “advocates a centralized and uniform society.” What kind of ideology advocates a centralized and uniform society? Let’s see there could be an ideology that advocates equal rights and equal protection… that type of ideology would want a centralized and uniform society. They couldn’t be talking about THAT kind of society they are opposing… so it must be something else. Ahh here we go, another ideology that advocates a central and uniform set of beliefs…. Christianity. No wait, they couldn’t be talking about a society with a set of centralized and uniform beliefs and founding based upon a belief in god… Like when Scalia and the religious right say American has a uniform common Christian heritage and that America is a Christian Nation. They can’t be opposed to THAT kind of centralized and uniform society could they?

I guess the vagueness of the Federalist Society explains why Carolyn Kuhl, nominated by Bush for an appeals courts seat said, "I did not participate in writing the mission statement. (of the federalist society).” "Therefore I am unable to opine," she said. When asked about the philosophy of the Federalist Society. (Just for the record, I didn't write the mission statement of the ACLU, but as a member I sure as hell know and understand their guiding philosophy.)

Jeffrey S. Sutton, another member, who won a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, said, "I have no idea what their philosophy is."

Mr. Viet D Dinh, who left his Justice Department position in 2003 and now teaches law at Georgetown, said he answered candidly at his confirmation hearing. "I did not know, and still do not know, what the society stands for because it has no stated philosophy other than the exchange of ideas," he said. "There's no evasion in that. It's just as straightforward as it gets."

So why would someone join a group of which they know nothing? One has to wonder why you would join a group who has no claimed central philosophy and pretends to be no more than a debate club? A debate club in actuality would be open to all points of view, but the Federalist Society carefully chooses which points of view are presented, negating the idea that they are a debate club. No central philosophy and not a debate club. What possible service could membership, or non-membership play in one’s career? Possibly as a Litmus Test for advancement under a Republican Administration?

For starters, according to the Senate Judiciary Committee, 15 of the 41 appeals court judges confirmed under Mr. Bush have identified themselves as members of the group. The rest of Bush’s nominees, like John Roberts, have said they are not members of the group, but this has later been clarified to say they are not dues paying members. This leaves open the possibility that they WERE members, just not DUES PAYING members. But who’s counting.

Federalist Society members have also played some significant roles in American politics of the last 15 years. For example:

In the 1990's, three Federalist Society lawyers, Jerome M. Marcus, Richard W. Porter and George T. Conway, played important but covert roles in helping Paula Corbin Jones sue President Clinton for sexual harassment. They also worked behind the scenes to disclose Mr. Clinton's affair with a White House intern, Monica Lewinsky.

Kenneth W. Starr, the independent counsel whose report led to Mr. Clinton's impeachment, is a prominent member of the society. (You remember Kenneth Starr, he's the guy who was appointed to investigate a failed land deal in Arkansas {Whitewater} and ended up doing a $40 million dollar report on a blowjob. I'm still waiting for a conservative to explain the link between Monica Lewinsky and Whitewater.) Another member is Theodore B. Olson, who successfully argued Bush v. Gore, the case that stopped the Florida recount in 2000 and ensured Mr. Bush's election.

The mission of the Federalist Society was confirmed when Senator Orrin G. Hatch, a Utah Republican on the Judiciary Committee, said "I am on the board of advisers of the Federalist Society, and I am darn proud of it," Mr. Hatch called the society a group of lawyers "who are just sick and tired of the leftward leanings of our government."

It turns out that the Federalist Society is really just the Republican Party. Let’s not try to hide it. It’s a group of lawyers who wanted to ban together to oppose the Democrats but wanted to pretend they had another motive. They are the same type of people who are now pushing intelligent design in schools but pretending not to be Christian Fundamentalists. They are propagandists and stooges for the Republican Party, which explains why they have no principles and apparently no shame.

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