The evil of textualism

Ho ho ho and what does America [and subsequently the world] have on its hands here?

Haiku reports on the New Yorker’s report on Textualism, the new ism:

The case is the latest chapter of the legal assault on Obamacare, but it is also the most prominent instance of a larger fight over an ascendant legal theory known as textualism. This approach, which was pioneered and advocated by, most prominently, Justice Antonin Scalia, holds that courts should interpret laws based solely on their own terms, and not on the basis of the intent of the legislators who create the statute. As Scalia has written, “We are governed by laws, not by the intentions of legislators.” The words of the statute should always prevail, Scalia believes, over “unenacted legislative intent.”

This all sounds reasonable enough in the abstract. But what happens when the text of the law is ambiguous, or if one part of the text conflicts with another? The limits of textualism are explored in a new book by Robert A. Katzmann, the chief judge on the Second Circuit, who was appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1999. In “Judging Statutes,” which will be released next week, Katzmann makes a powerful case that judges should pay attention to legislative history—the words of members of Congress in debates, the committee reports explaining laws, and all of the source material that reflects how Congress really works.

Moreover, Katzmann makes the apt point that textualism is especially inappropriate for judges who, like Scalia, profess to believe in judicial restraint—in the idea, that is, that judges should defer to the elected branches of government.

The thrust of the article is to ask whether textualism will kill Obamacare but as anyone with a brain could see, it goes far deeper than that and is yet another thrust in the anti-history push. Interesting to read the other day an article by someone referring to “They”, which is just another name for the “Them” that I and a number of others employ.

And Them are evil, in a never-resting, banal, bureaucratic, 1000 eyed peacock sort of way. They’re truly evil muvvers because, in leisure, they sit back in the club and dream up new quiet atrocities to introduce to a manipulated and increasingly dumbed down public.

You are working, making ends meet, worrying about keeping it all together, just trying to survive and these bastards are dreaming up new ways to remove the straw from the bricks, to coin a story from history = the history they now wish to deny.

To devise more far-fetched analogy, it’s like our trying to have some quality of life as flying over the sea in our rickety ultralight and clear of the waves, we’re in a good place but storms and vicissitudes are sent to blight us by Neptune and they weigh down the wings of the ultralight until it is slapping against the sea below and being buffeted left, right and centre.

So we rail against Neptune and shake our little fists but will it alter anything? How can we even get at Neptune in the first place?

Another analogy, care of my mate, is that we’re already in hell on earth. Every time an unexpected obstacle looms, every time that pen or those car keys go missing, every time we go to pull out, in our car, onto a clear road, suddenly a dozen cars appear and prevent it.

And the ones doing it to us are Them and to give it a religious hue – Ephesians 6:12.

Some time ago, the esteemed and in all but a few cases perspicacious Longrider and I had a falling out over two matters. One was religion and the other was history. He took the point of view that history is not important, as in not important to be taught, a point of view I took strong exception to.

If that were so – and it is increasingly so, with the left rewriting history in its own image – then things like precedent have no further meaning, as in legal precedent, judicial precedent.

So, one no longer refers to the case from ten years ago of Crown versus Smith – all we have to go on is the letter of the law and to wildly mix references in this post, that’s no different to Shylock in the Merchant of Venice – a play which, incidentally, you’d no longer have access to, as history is bunkum and suppressed. Anyone smell 1984 here?

Think it through. Obama is able to get something onto the statute books and it’s evil. It supercedes everything before like an EU edict over national law. Suddenly, there is a new, textualized reality, absolutely adored by the ideologues who can now replace all that had gone before with a new official reality.

It’s not just an utter nightmare, it’s unstable. It means that today’s reality is replaced tomorrow, very much in keeping with the transient nature of society and celebrity today and which coven of socialists can conspire best to get the new reality accepted on this day.

And naturally, detractors will say this is a wild extrapolation, that textualism means nothing of the kind.

Yes it does. This is how they introduce every bit of nastiness to us – the neo-Hegelian again and again. Every little move like this, every new interpretation, every new redefining of a word – it’s another nail in the coffin of humanity.