Dealing with the New Supreme Court

It appears that we have entered an era of 5 to 4 Court Rulings, the supposed “swing vote” shifting from a Judge Sandra Day O’Connor who had the tendency to attempt conciliation and compromise for majority opinions, to Judge Anthony Kennedy, who seems just to be one in a 5 to 4 voting block.

I do not think we have seen anything like this since the first term of the Franklin Roosevelt administration — and perhaps a bit into the second term until the conservatives on that bench saw that they were now outnumbered and that staying on to fight Roosevelt’s New Deal was pointless– and the terms of the court’s effect in shaping policy for years to come, check-mating any swings in the mood of the nation’s electorate for their representative democracy, looks to be comparable to the Roosevelt leaving with a Supreme Court selected entirely by him.

(Earlier thoughts on the situation that I wish to parlay forward but do not wish to repeat found here and here — the last sentence of that last post, I need to assert, was a joke.)
What I can say is that the Democrats’ argument regarding the Supreme Court dwindles to the idea that a 5-4 court decision is less movable than a 6-3 court decision.  Also a little less liable to pull purely partisan decisions — perhaps the worst of the Supreme Court Justices — Clarance Thomas — once said that he has narrowed his news sources to Rush Limbaugh, and if we ever see a court decision that allows someone like Bush to do what Nixon could not — say, claim executive privilege in not turning over documents — we know what is going on.  (But we’ve been there before.  What was that Court case?  Bush V Gore, I think it was called.)
The tedium found with the latest 5 to 4 ruling, concerning busing and school integration — one of the large focal points of the conservative backlash of the 1970s, and perhaps a problematic solution to an even more problematic situation — is that we can expect a slate of angry whites storming into courts throughout the nation, suing school districts for essentially racial reasons.
Keep in mind this, though, when thinking about this Supreme Court, as the nation squabbles over social issues:

This “has been our best Supreme Court term ever,” said Robin Conrad, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s litigation group. Of the 15 cases decided this term in which the Chamber took a position, the court sided with the Chamber 13 times.

Maureen Mahoney, a Washington attorney who has argued cases before the justices, said the court under former Chief Justice William Rehnquist was famously favorable to business, “but we now know that the Roberts Court is even better.” Rehnquist served as chief for 19 years until his death in September 2005. He was replaced by John Roberts.

Consumer advocates say the court’s pro-business decisions have weakened protections for ordinary Americans in a variety of areas, from banking to retailing.

None of which are as sensational as “Bong Hits for Jesus”, a court case whose decision I have some problems with not so much on legal grounds (I’ll let you know when I obtain a doctorate degree in Law, pursuing the law to pull together a basis for my political opinions… and yes, that was a joke) as a gut level of how Justice Roberts called it, differentiating between political speech for, for example — stating opinions on pro – drug legalization, and “Pro Drug” messages that the school can control — the “Bong Hits for Jesus” banner. Meaning… students can’t be silly? Or, probably better yet, schools get to regulate and decide how a student may be silly.

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