Monday, March 21, 2005

A Blow to the Rule of Law

My views on the Terri Schiavo case per se are known. (See here.) Nevertheless, I am appalled by the assault on the rule of law launched by the U.S. Congress. The case went through the Florida courts and was reviewed many times. I don't like how the law is written, but it is a bald-faced lie to say, as one Republican representative said, that Terri Schiavo was deprived of due process of law. The precedent Congress has set—by decreeing that a particular person may file a state legal matter in the federal courts—will surely come back to haunt us. That this travesty is perpetrated by the party professing dedication to small government and federalism makes it all the more outrageous. This is a sad day in more ways than one.


At 9:19 AM, Blogger Nicolas Martin said...

I agree. Even more preposterous is the congressional investigation of steroid use by atheletes. There is Ron Paul, and then there are hundreds of reckless fools. Thank goodness the other two branches of government are repositories of good sense!

At 9:34 AM, Blogger Jeff Schaler said...

I would be very surprised if the federal judge overturned the Florida court rulings, that is, ordered the feeding tube re-inserted. The members of Congress who passed this legislation likely think that the federal judge will not overturn. They want to be on record as "doing what they could" to please the religious right and win votes down the road.

And I see little reason to believe that Republicans are any closer in thinking to libertarians than Democrats. Reps and Dems alike are strong advocates of the therapeutic state. For example, both support the war on people called the war on drugs. Both support involuntary commitment to prisons called mental hospitals.

I don't see much evidence that libertarians are necessarily opposed to involuntary commitment.

What people say is one thing. What they do is another.

At 10:12 AM, Blogger Nicolas Martin said...

Perhaps this Twain quote strikes a bit too close to home in this case:

"All Congresses and Parliaments have a kindly feeling for idiots, and a compassion for them, on account of personal experience and heredity."


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