2016 is Now About Replacing Scalia

This weekend the nation is mourning Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia who died on Saturday at the age of 79. Scalia was one of the most influential legal thinkers and brilliant writers and personalities ever to serve on the Supreme Court. More than any other jurist, he was the one that did more to promote the idea of originalism — the notion that judges should interpret the Constitution as the Founders intended — and textualism – the idea that the words of the Constitution mean what they say. He was the intellectual leader and the backbone of the conservative majority that has prevailed in many cases in the last decades as well as the author of scathing and insightful dissents that may be remembered as long as his majority opinions. At the same time, he will also be justly celebrated as a man who was able to friends with liberal colleagues even as he engaged in spirited arguments with them. That is an example that more Americans should follow in a time of increased polarization.

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2016 is Now About Replacing Scalia

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Your ‘Historical Detail,’ Our Real Life

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A review of a comedy of manners set in England in the 1920s wouldn’t seem the obvious place to look to understand why the average Westerner really has no business trying to tell Israelis how to run their country. But two sentences in this New York Times book review encapsulate the problem perfectly: “Historical details, which abound, are often fascinating. (Who knew that beards interfere with gas masks?)”

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Originalism Goes to the Rodeo

Neil Gorsuch makes "originalism" accessible to the masses.

During his confirmation hearing yesterday, Judge Neil Gorsuch introduced the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to Mutton Busting, a rodeo event which the jurist described as follows:  “You take a poor little kid, you find a sheep, and you attach the one to the other and see how long they can hold on.” With his fourth day of hearings still ahead, Gorsuch may just as well have been describing the confirmation process itself.

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Sponsor a Sunni Militia? No Thanks.

The Sunni problem will only be made worse by patronizing Americans.

As representatives of 68 countries participating in the global coalition to defeat the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh) meet in Washington, a number of plans will be on the table, and even more will be debated informally on the sidelines. As allied forces anticipate the liberation of Mosul, attention is increasingly focused on the next phase, both in Iraq and in Syria.