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The Wall Street Journal‘s Editorial Board decries what are obviously politically motivated attempts to discredit today’s U.S. Supreme Court. A slice:

“Ethics” is a time-honored political weapon in Washington, and it’s being used now against the Court because conservatives have a majority that is cleaning up some of the legal mistakes of recent decades. It has sent abortion policy back to the states (to the political benefit of Democrats in most places), expanded protections for the Bill of Rights, and is slowly restoring constitutional guardrails on the administrative state. Most of all, the Court is no longer a backstop legislature for progressives to impose policies they can’t get through Congress.

The first sign that this is all politics is the context for the hearing. Note that it’s been triggered by easilydebunkedreports about the conservative Justices, especially claims that Justice Thomas didn’t properly disclose certain financial transactions.

But Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson didn’t get the same attention when she revised her financial disclosures in 2022. Her oversights were far more extensive than Justice Thomas’s. There was also no outcry in 2020 when Justice Sonia Sotomayor amended her financial disclosures after the group Fix the Court found that she hadn’t disclosed reimbursement for trips to universities.

Glenn Reynolds weighs in on the media’s role in attempts to discredit the Court. A slice:

“Wait till the next empty shoe drops.”

That’s how law professor Josh Blackman concludes a discussion of The New York Times’ open-mouthed discovery that law schools have summer study-abroad programs and sometimes they recruit celebrity professors, even Supreme Court justices, to teach them.

The Times believes it has found a scandal because George Mason’s Scalia Law School has one of these programs and seeks Supreme Court justices to teach in the summer.

My law school has one of these too. So does Blackman’s.

He comments: “Shocker! A DC law school works hard to connect its students with the leaders of the profession. My own law school has organized similar programs in the past with Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Ginsburg. (My students described it as a once-in-a-lifetime experience.)”

But, you see, the law school and the justices involved here are conservative, so the Times thinks — or, more accurately, wants its readers to think — there must be something nefarious going on, perhaps “collusion.”

Why, George Mason’s legal clinic sometimes files friend-of-the-court briefs in the Supreme Court, which the paper would like you to believe is some sort of conflict of interest.

Never mind that schools like Harvard and Yale were — until recently, anyway — much closer to many justices on the court than this.

Speaking of the U.S. Supreme Court, it has agreed to hear a case on the Chevron doctrine (which, as described by the Wall Street Journal‘s Editorial Board, “says judges should defer to regulators’ interpretations when laws are supposedly ambiguous”). A slice from the WSJ‘s Editorial:

Applying the Court’s Chevron (1984) framework, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the government’s broad interpretation as “reasonable” because it was not expressly precluded by the law. In other words, as long as a law doesn’t forbid the government from doing something, it can do it. Where have we seen this before?

The Biden vaccine mandate and eviction moratorium were particularly egregious examples. The High Court resolved challenges to those policies under its major questions doctrine, which requires clear authorization from Congress for regulations that are politically or economically significant.

The Court is taking the next logical step by agreeing to revisit its much-abused Chevron precedent. This suggests that there could be five Justices willing to overturn the doctrine or at the least pare it back, which would strengthen the separation of powers and individual liberty. More potentially good news from the High Court.

Samuel Gregg applauds the late Ramón Díaz.

Colin Grabow and Alfredo Carrillo Obregon report on “the Jones Act’s role in encouraging Puerto Rico’s use of Russian energy.”

Pierre Lemieux has now reviewed all three volumes of the new edition of Hayek’s magnificent 1970s trilogy, Law, Legislation, and Liberty. A slice:

Liberal democracy originally referred simply to “a method of procedure for determining government decisions” or, more practically, for getting rid of governments without bloodshed. Democracy was a protection against tyranny. It is an error to view democracy not as “a procedure for arriving at agreement on common action,” but instead “to give it a substantive content prescribing what the aim of those activities ought to be.”

The current, unlimited democracy leads to rent-seeking (competition for government privileges), the triumph of special interest groups, and legal corruption. The cause is that a government with unlimited powers “cannot refuse to exercise them,” so everybody will rush to the public trough.

Scott Atlas talks with my GMU colleague Todd Zywicki about the public-health establishment’s abuse of its power.

Ramesh Ponnuru singles out four claims made by Fauci during his recent interview with David Wallace-Wells of the New York Times. Two slices:

First: Fauci tells David Wallace-Wells that the U.S. mortality rate from Covid was “worse than virtually all other countries.” Wallace-Wells points out that this isn’t remotely true, and Fauci seems to concede the point. This seems like a pretty basic question to get wrong.


Third: Fauci says that he has been unfairly criticized for government Covid policies that he did not set. He did not shut down schools or factories, he says. He says that “public-health people” including him looked only at the public-health dimensions of policy options. They left it to other people — such as governors, presumably — to incorporate other considerations, such as the economy, into the final decisions they made.

Our editorial scorns this self-defense. Its availability goes to the heart of what I think went wrong with our Covid regime. You can’t really say, in one breath, hey, we’re just technical experts making non-binding recommendations and then, in the next, if you deviate from these recommendations you are an anti-science lunatic. Fauci is not wholly responsible for the “follow the science” mindset but he certainly contributed to it.

Jay Bhattacharya tweets:

When a cult dies, and it should now be clear to all that the covidian cult is dying, many cult members will feel the pain of loss, as they search for something else to fill the virus shaped hole in their heart.