After serving four years, voters had seen enough of his brand of judicial philosophy, making him the first sitting justice on the Wisconsin Supreme Court in four decades to lose a retention election last year.Conspicuously, none of those political Brainiacs is capable of extending their "theory" to an explanation of why Wisconsinites delivered 69 of the State's 72 counties this year to Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson, whose "brand of judicial philosophy" should be — by any of their own measures — even more repugnant to them, since she voted with Butler in every single decision which so greatly offends, and even authored one of the two that the WSJ mentions.
And, as a matter of WSJ-escaping fact, in that case Butler joined a concurring opinion separate from Abrahamson's emphasizing that statutory caps on exactly the type of legal damages at issue certainly can be constitutional, but in this instance they weren't on account of the evidence of arbitrariness and dithering** in the legislative record.
In other words, if laws infringe against the protections guaranteed to the people of Wisconsin by their constitution, then there had better be — at a bare minimum — a consistent basis for the legislature's reasoning. And here, the record demonstrated otherwise.
That's the courts' function: To ensure the people's representatives aren't acting against the people's best interest, as expressly articulated in the constitution. The people said the latter controls.
You'd expect this foundational concept to appeal to the average Tea Party-er as they're making a spectacle of pinning giant copies of constitutions to their chests and weeping along with Glenn Beck.
What the Wall Street Journal is implicitly demanding is that if the courts are performing their function effectively, then throw the judges out and replace them with a matching set of rubber stamps.
Even — and especially — if you have to lie to do it.
Why not get straight to the point and eliminate the legislature itself while they're at it, and just re-institute a monarchy. Constitutional republicanism would be so much simpler (the WSJ prefers the Big-R version, which is their irrational basis — minus even the teeth).
At his confirmation hearing this month, Mr. Butler was quick to make light of his double rejection by Wisconsin voters, telling the Senate Judiciary Committee that "After 16 years on the bench, I may be a better judge than a politician."This is a purely speculative partisan fantasy, and an ignorant one at that. If it's a "coded nod" at all, it's to the sleazy program of bottom feeding poli-ticks advanced by Michael Gableman and his supporters, which Louis Butler possessed the judiciousness (I know — what an unusual quality for a judge) and the plain common decency to resist.
Ahem. That's a coded nod to liberal groups like the George Soros-funded Justice at Stake that are trying to eliminate judicial elections.
So it's blindingly obvious who are the ones making the most compelling argument for eliminating judicial elections.
In Ferdon v. Wisconsin Partners ...It's Wisconsin Patients. These characters can't even read a case caption, let alone engage the decision's other 178 pages, and we're supposed to extend to them a presumption of objective credibility?
Only a local medium wave sad harlequin like Charlie Sykes,*** one of the aforementioned more vocal supporters, would do such a manifestly foolish thing. And that tells you plenty, also.
Plenty amusing, pathetic, or some of each, there's your trilemma.
* It wouldn't surprise me if they went to
** More recently not a conservative Republican Value.™
*** As a 50K-watt marquee employee of Journal Communications, Inc. (NYSE:JRN), about as elite as mainstream media can get 'round here.