Sunday, February 18, 2007

"The Next 25 Years: The New Supreme Court and The Press"

Democracy Now speaks with famed First Amendment lawyer Martin Garbus about his new book, "The Next 25 Years: The New Supreme Court and What It Means for Americans." Garbus says, “When it comes to questions of journalism, questions of the First Amendment, questions of privilege and questions of investigative reporting, this Supreme Court is going to be very anti-media.” [includes rush transcript]
I think the Supreme Court is not going to be adverse to the government. I think that when it comes to questions of journalism and questions of the First Amendment and question of privilege and questions of investigative reporting, this Supreme Court is going to be very anti-the media. I think Roberts and Alito, who with Scalia and Thomas and Kennedy, those five people who now dominate the court, are going to be people who are going to be very, very hostile to the media. So with respect to the next twenty-five years, they're going to be hostile to a lot of other things. There's the famous integration case, Brown v. Board of Education, and fundamentally that's going to be overruled this term.
The president AGAINST the people:
I think ultimately what the court is also going to do is they're going to extend the whole question of the unitary presidency. They're going to give Bush, or whatever president follows, a great deal of power. Roberts and Alito, again, and Scalia and Thomas believe that the president has sole control over foreign affairs, that the president, as commander-in-chief, gets all kind of powers, and with respect to the past decisions that we've had, with Guantanamo, etc., you had O'Connor there, who was basically a ballast, and I think you're going to find the court making very, very different decisions now with respect to Iraq-related issues.
State Religion Vs. The People?
I think that's one of the major areas. Bush’s faith-based initiative has resulted in more money going into the churches this year than have gone on in the entire last century. It's an enormous money flow. I have a case now where we're challenging it in New York with respect to the Salvation Army. What a faith-based initiative means is that the federal government can pour money into religious organizations, if the religious organizations are doing the kinds of work that a state organization could do. For example, if the Salvation Army is taking care of children or homeless, then they also are allowed proselytize using federal funds.
Here's where the Busheviks' assault on the First Amendment is going...

1 comment:

Stein said...

I just picked up this book. There's an argument to be made that i should be reading it, instead of reading blogs about it....Anyway, let's get the word out about this book, which i think makes an argument that we need more people to heed.