Tuesday, June 07, 2005

What Do Thomas, Brown, and Ehrlich Have In Common? 

Well its their philosophy of government of course. Each agrees with you know who when it comes to how to interpret our Constitution; the right way or the other choice.

For example, although Gene Healy says we should not get excited about what Justice Thomas wrote in dissent on the Riach Case yesterday, I cannot help it. Especially when Linda Greenhouse of the New York Times quotes Thomas as writing:

Justice Thomas said that "if Congress can regulate this under the Commerce Clause, then it can regulate virtually anything, and the federal government is no longer one of limited and enumerated powers."
This view is what scares the Washington Post to death. Today the editors argue that Judge Janice Brown would set the country back to the days of Jefferson and Madison:

Justice Brown, in speeches, has openly embraced the "Lochner" era of Supreme Court jurisprudence. During this period a century ago, the court struck down worker protection laws that, the justices held, violated a right to free contract they found in the Constitution's due process protections.

The Lochner case found that a New York law restricting the working hours of bakers in violated the Due Process Clause of the Constitution's 14th Amendment. From the decision:

Under that provision no state can deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law. The right to purchase or to sell labor is part of the liberty protected by this amendment, unless there are circumstances which exclude the right.
Radical stuff right?

Finally, Governor Ehrlich of Maryland deserves a prize for stopping law enforcement official from using night vision equipment to catch drivers not wearing their seat belts. According to the Governor:

"It caused a lot of anger to me when I found out about it," Ehrlich (R) said Saturday on WBAL-AM radio. "There is an issue with government intrusion into private decision making."
What! How outlandish! He actually wants individuals to make decisions for themselves and take responsibility for their actions! Someone has got to put a stop to this immediately. It's notions such as this that makes the Post so nervous about Judge Brown:

She began one dissent, in a case challenging regulation of a hotel, by noting that "private property, already an endangered species in California, is now entirely extinct in San Francisco."
The vote in Congress on her confirmation may take place as early as tomorrow.

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