The Supreme Court


Elena Kagan: Jewish Ethnic Networking
Eases the Path of a Liberal/Leftist to the Supreme Court

by Kevin MacDonald
Occidental Observer, 2009-05-20

[This was written after Justice David Souter announced his retirement,
when Elena Kagan was being considered as Souter’s replacement.
Kagan was not chosen then,
as Obama nominated Sonia Sotomayor to replace Souter.
But Kagan was indeed chosen,
not as Obama’s first pick, replacing Souter,
rather his second pick, to replace Justice Stevens.]

Kagan’s candidacy raises a number of issues.
If nominated and confirmed,
there would be three Jewish justices on the Supreme Court — all on the left.
Jews are of course always overrepresented among elites —
especially on the left,
but 33% is high by any standard given that
Jews constitute less than 3% of the US population.
This is much higher than Jewish representation in the US Senate (13%)
and the House of Representatives (~7%).
The last time I checked, if there were three Jews on the Supreme Court,
the percentage would be about the same as
the percentage of Jews among the wealthiest Americans.


Kagan seems to have lived a charmed life,
with perhaps a whiff ... of ethnic networking.
At least one of the journalists writing the LA Times panegyric is Jewish
(David G. Savage),
and the two legal scholars who are quoted in the article
(Fried and Tribe) are both Jews.
In addition, Kagan was appointed Dean of Harvard Law by Lawrence Summers —
also Jewish and with a strong Jewish identity.
Summers and Kagan covered for Laurence Tribe
when he lifted a passage from another scholar’s book without attribution.
Ethnic networking is nothing if not reciprocal.

While Jewish activists are doing all they can
to promote a Jew for this position,
we don’t hear a peep from White Protestants —
a group that dominated the Supreme Court for 150 years.
With Souter’s departure, the only White Protestant left on the court
is the superannuated Stevens,
who is 89 and will doubtless be replaced by an ethnic minority
if he retires during the Obama administration.
(White males need not apply.)
When it comes to playing help-my-tribe battles,
White Protestants are completely inept —
in fact, they don’t even play at all.


Indeed, her writing is not voluminous at all.
In her entire career at the University of Chicago and Harvard —
the very apex of elite academic institutions —
she has written a grand total of 9 articles.
Actually, her scholarly output is even less than that because two of these publications are book reviews and one is a tribute to Thurgood Marshall.
When she received tenure at the University of Chicago in 1995,
she had exactly two scholarly articles published in law journals —
a record that would ordinarily not get her tenure
even at quite a few third tier universities
much less an elite institution like the University of Chicago.

But on the basis of this record and later work in the Clinton Administration,
in 2003 she became the dean of Harvard Law School,
the most prestigious law school in the country.
She has yet to publish any articles or books since becoming dean.
But now her lack of scholarship is called a plus by Laurence Tribe,
presumably because her positions on many issues are unknown.


Kagan’s path to the academic heights of the legal profession
and perhaps to a position on the Supreme Court
is not based on a solid record of scholarship or any other relevant experience,
but on ethnic boosterism from other Jews.
As I noted elsewhere,
Jews are represented in elite American academic institutions
at levels far higher than can be explained by IQ.

Kagan is a poster girl for Jewish affirmative action.
Not only does she have no discernible skills
that would warrant her high position as dean of Harvard Law —
much less an appointment to the Supreme Court,
she is boosted by another Harvard professor (Laurence Tribe)
who plagiarized another scholar’s work.
(Plagiarism seems to run rampant at Harvard Law.
Norman Finkelstein provides a credible case that
Alan Dershowitz plagiarized others’ work in writing The Case for Israel.
Charles J. Ogletree Jr., an African American,
was involved in double plagiarism:
foisting off the plagiarized work of his assistants as his own.)
And Kagan was appointed dean of Harvard Law
by then-Harvard President Lawrence Summers
who has massive ethical problems of his own
related to shielding another Harvard professor,
his friend and protégé Andrei Shleifer.
Shleifer was found liable by a federal court in 2004
for conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government
for his activities during the transition to capitalism in Russia in the 1990s.
Summers also accepted $2.7 million in speaking fees
from companies that received government bailout money
when he later became head of the National Economic Council.



High Court: Does religion still matter?
By Robert Barnes
Washington Post, 2010-03-08

[An excerpt; emphasis is (obviously) added.]

There was a time, of course, in which there was a “Catholic seat” on the court,
followed in 1916 with the appointment of the court’s first Jew.
The days when one of each seemed sufficient are long over.

Catholics became a majority of the nine-member court in 2006
with the confirmation of Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor made it six last summer.
And the other two justices besides Stevens [Ginsburg, Breyer] are Jewish.


Religion becomes a diversity consideration just like ethnicity and gender,
especially with
51 percent of Americans identifying with one of the Protestant religions.

[According to Wikipedia (as of 2010-03-09),
2.2 percent of the U.S. population is Jewish.
(Surely the true percentage is not too far from that number.)

I assume Barnes is a professional enough journalist
to not merely be speaking for himself when he writes
“The days when one of each seemed sufficient are long over,”
referring to both Catholics and Jews.
But I deplore the idea that three percent of the population
should demand 2/9 (=22 percent) of the Supreme Court as its due.]

‘NYT’ says religion on the Supreme Court doesn’t matter
by Philip Weiss
Mondoweiss.net, 2010-04-11


I can’t help but notice that
the people who say that religion doesn’t matter
are mostly Jews

(by my count: Chicago’s Geoffrey Stone, Lee Epstein, Ginsburg).
Do you believe that Ginsburg’s Jewishness meant nothing to Clinton-42,
as she claims?
This is self-delusion.
As if it were coincidence that both Clinton-42 picks were Jewish.

But Clinton’s administration represented
the great Jewish arrival in the Establishment;
which is why David Frum even says that Clinton was (then)
the most philo-Semitic presidency in history.


Hype for Elena Kagan—Round Two
by Kevin MacDonald
The Occidental Observer Blog, 2010-04-11

The last time we went through the Supreme Court nomination process,
there was a veritable groundswell of hyperbole for Elena Kagan —
so much so that I couldn’t resist writing about it here.
The theme is ethnic networking.
How else explain the fact that
someone with a completely undistinguished scholarly record
not only got tenure at the University of Chicago
but was appointed dean of Harvard Law School?

She had exactly two publications in law review journals when she got tenure
and has done very little since.
A record like that would be a tough sell for tenure
even in the nether regions of academia,
never mind the most elite schools in the land.
But now her lack of publications is seen by her supporters as an asset:
She has no embarrassing paper trail on controversial issues.


The really amazing thing is that Kagan is being framed as a conservative.

on the issues that really count —
issues related to
multiculturalism, executive power, and free speech,
there is every reason to suppose that Kagan is on the left...


So the hype for Kagan is dishonest on two counts:
First, there is no evidence whatever that she is brilliant;
all the evidence is that
she has achieved far more in the academic world and in government
than she deserves based on her actual performance.
Second, she is inaccurately presented as a conservative.
Her meager paper trail of academic writing clearly indicates that
she would be a staunch warrior on the side of the multicultural left
on critical issues like free speech.

Elena Kagan Gets the Nomination
by Kevin MacDonald
The Occidental Observer Blog, 2010-05-10

[Philip] Weiss goes on to take the standard line that
Jews have achieved so much because of their bookish culture.
But if there’s anything that stands out about Kagan,
it’s how utterly ordinary she is in terms of scholarly accomplishment
or anything else that would qualify her for the court–
very few publications, no experience as a judge, little courtroom experience –
the Harriet Miers of the Obama administration.
(I stole that one from someone on the Rachel Maddow show, maybe Maddow herself.
But it shows the depth of her inaptitude that even liberals are sensitive to it.
For example, Paul Campos writes on the Daily Beast,
“if Kagan is a brilliant legal scholar,
the evidence must be lurking somewhere other than in her publications.
Kagan’s scholarly writings are lifeless, dull, and eminently forgettable.
They are, on the whole, cautious academic exercises
in the sort of banal on-the-other-handing
whose prime virtue is
that it’s unlikely to offend anyone in a position of power.”
Here’s my version:
“When she received tenure at the University of Chicago in 1995,
she had exactly two scholarly articles published in law journals —
a record that would ordinarily not get her tenure
even at quite a few third tier universities
much less an elite institution like the University of Chicago.”)

Her only talent seems to be getting really prestigious jobs
without any obvious qualifications apart from her ethnic background.

And her appointment is a sure thing for the left:
Whereas Republicans have been disappointed several times
by nominees who converted into liberals (like John Paul Stevens),
Kagan’s ethnic identity ensures that
she is on the side of all things multicultural.

My take (see also here) is that
this is an affirmative action appointment
of someone who has benefited greatly from Jewish ethnic networking
and has dangerous views on the First Amendment
that are in line with the views of
the ADL, the SPLC, and the rest of the organized Jewish community.
(See also Patrick Cleburne’s post at VDARE.com.)


Kagan’s journalist supporters
by Kevin MacDonald
The Occidental Observer Blog, 2010-05-12

We at the TOO blog have been emphasizing how
Jewish ethnic networking
is the real story of the Kagan nomination.
One is led to that conclusion from simply looking at how utterly ordinary she is
in terms of scholarly accomplishment or anything else
that would qualify her for the court–
truly the Harriet Miers of the Obama administration.
Now Politico has an article discussing Kagan’s friends among journalists
(“Kagan’s journo friends”).
Of the 8 journo friends mentioned, 7 have obvious Jewish names,
the other, Jonathan Capehart, is a Black homosexual.
And two of the comments show that
the journalist met Kagan in the context of a Jewish social event....

Patrick Cleburne has another excellent blog on Kagan.
It calls attention to her hostility to free speech,
but also makes a point of Kagan’s (Jewish) journo friends,
this time at the NYTimes,
but also explicitly calls attention to some of her other Jewish connections....

Kagan Supreme Court Nomination: An Affront to the U.S. Military
Center for Military Readiness, 2010-05-10

Senate Should Question SG Kagan's Anti-Military Record


So Is She Gay? [referring to Elena Kagan, of course]
by Andrew Sullivan
Daily Dish, 2010-05-10

It is no more of an empirical question than whether she [Elena Kagan] is Jewish.
We know she is Jewish,
and it is a fact simply and rightly put in the public square.
If she were to hide her Jewishness,
it would seem rightly odd, bizarre, anachronistic,
even arguably self-critical or self-loathing.

And yet we have been told by many that she is gay ...
and no one will ask directly if this is true
and no one in the administration will tell us definitively.


[T]he issue of this tiny minority -
and the right of the huge majority to determine its rights and equality -
is a live issue for the court in the next generation,
and since
it would be bizarre to argue that
a Justice's sexual orientation will not in some way
affect his or her judgment of the issue,

it is only logical that this question should be clarified.

Does she have a spouse?
Is this spouse going to be forced into the background
in a way no heterosexual spouse ever would be?


[John Tabin responded to a quote from him
that Andrew Sullivan used in the above article (not shown here) in
A Brief History of Andrew Sullivan's Confusion Over The Politics of The Closet.”
Andrew Sullivan responds (naturally) in
The Evolving Politics And Ethics Of The Closet,”
followed by
The Borking Of Kagan”.]

The Borking Of Kagan
by Andrew Sullivan
Daily Dish, 2010-05-11

Will Saletan pens the most penetrating and persuasive critique
of my question as to the emotional orientation
[?? The question asked clearly was as to her sexual orientation.]
of Elena Kagan.
He puts it better than I, but his argument is essentially that

the personal facts of a supreme court nominee
can lead to unending and cruel and prejudiced exposure,
in a manner that
distorts the process and wounds the person.


[There are several answers to that point.

First, no one is required to accept nomination to the federal bench.
She surely had a perfectly fine, prestigious and influential position
as Dean of the Harvard Law School,
where such annoying questions as “What is your sexual orientation?”
would never be asked where the answer would be made public.

If someone wants to become one of the nine people
who have so much power over the remaining 300 million Americans,
it surely is reasonable to know something about
their basic personal characteristics,
of which sexual orientation is surely one.
If she might feel “wounded” by revealing her sexual orientation,
she can certainly decline what she herself has described as an honor.

Second, again, the decisions that she will play a key role in making will undoubtedly have great impact on shaping the future of American society.
We, the American people,
have every right and every need to know the salient facts
that will undoubtedly influence what direction
potential nominees will direct America towards.

Harry Truman famously said:
“If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”
If any nominee can’t stand to have their sexual orientation revealed,
they can and should decline the nomination.
No one will know that they declined it,
and surely no one will have the slightest right or need to know their orientation
in those circumstances.]

The World Is Kagan’s Battlefield
by Justin Raimondo
Antiwar.com, 2010-05-12

Why she shouldn’t join the Supremes

Are liberals anti-WASP?
by Patrick Bucahanan
World Net Daily, 2010-05-13

Is sexual identity our business, or are we a nation of busybodies?
By Karen Tumulty
Washington Post, 2010-05-14


The “outing” wars aside, Obama suggested that
a candidate’s life experience has a bearing on
what kind of justice he or she might be.
Last year, he offered that one of his main criteria was “empathy” --
a much-criticized standard that he has since refined to
“a keen understanding of
how the law affects the daily lives of the American people.”

[I have no doubt that Elena Kagan has
“a keen understanding of
how the law affects the daily lives of”
Jewish women, probably lesbian, born on the Upper West Side of New York,
never married, no experience with child-raising or living with a spouse,
(real typical America, in other words)
who have spent their entire lives in the academic or executive branch legal community,
together with
the cohorts of our society that such people seek to build alliances with.
I further would assume that she shares
the values, goals, and prejudices of such people.]

As the rumors have persisted,
a number of Kagan’s friends have come forward,
presumably with White House acquiescence,
to attest that she is a heterosexual.
One of those sexuality character witnesses
was former New York governor Eliot Spitzer,
who had to resign when he was caught patronizing prostitutes.
“I did not go out with her, but other guys did,”
Spitzer wrote in an e-mail to the news organization Politico,
recalling his days with Kagan at Princeton.

[Several comments:

1. Kagan graduated from Princeton in 1981,
so her undergraduate days are thirty years ago.
Not exactly up-to-date.

2. What does just “going out” prove?
There is no doubt that homosexuals sometimes have friends who are heterosexual,
with whom they go out.
“Going out” proves nothing.

3. Even if she was at least partially heterosexual thirty years ago,
people change their sexual orientation with time.
There have been numerous examples (e.g.)
of married women who have divorced their husband and come out as lesbians.
For that matter, the same thing has happened with men.]

Elena Kagan, yet another New Yorker
by Patrick Lang
Sic Semper Tyrannis, 2010-05-15

My objection to this woman (Kagan) has nothing to do with
her gender, religion, sexual preference (if she has one),
educational background or politics.
I reckon that she is someone who compromises every issue
and “goes along to get along.”
She is everyone’s pal.
She will not be a “troublemaker.”

[Mr. Lang is certainly entitled to his opinion.
Those reading all of this post know that I have a different one on this issue.]

My problem with her is that she is from the northeastern United States.
In my opinion there are already too many Justices on the Supreme Court
who are from east of the Ohio and north of the Potomac.

Nationalists will reject the idea that culture varies widely across the US
but, in fact, that is the case.

The elites of the northeast
believe that
they are uniquely
the guardians of enlightenment and “progress,”

but the cultures of rural America, the Midwest, Southwest, Mountain West,
the Pacific Northwest and the South
are quite different from that of the Northeast and its cities.

In the present Supreme Court,
Kennedy and Breyer were raised in California.
Thomas has deep roots in the South.
The rest are Northeasterners.
Do other Americans not have the right to be judged by people
less alien in culture than some of the incumbents?

There should be more regional and cultural balance on the Supreme Court. pl

Elena Kagan on the Jewish radical tradition in American politics
by Kevin MacDonald
TOO Blog, 2010-05-23


The SCOTUS Decision on Violent Video Games

Scalia wrong, Thomas right on violent video games
By Ken Klukowski
Washington Examiner, 2011-06-30

[This article may also be found at freerepublic.]

Here is a look by the author of this blog
at the court demographics of that decision.
There were three positions on the issue offered by the justices:
  • That any attempt to ban violent video games would be unconstitutional,
    and thus that in particular the California law was unconstitutional.

  • That bans on violent video games might be constitutional,
    but that due to the way it was drafted this particular California law
    was unconstitutional.

  • That the California law, as drafted, was constitutional.

The court broke down on these issues 5-2-2.
That is, only the barest majority thought
any such ban would be unconstitutional.

Now let us look at how those votes were divided, by gender of the justices.

Of the six male justices, they divided on those issues 2-2-2.
(Specifically, Scalia and Kennedy, Roberts and Alito, Thomas and Breyer.)
That is, if only the male justices were voting,
if a law could be drafted to meet the concerns of Roberts and Alito,
such an anti-violent-video law would pass muster by a four to two vote.

The female justices?
All three of them, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan,
said that any such law would be unconstitutional.

My own position on this issue is that of Roberts and Alito.
In particular, I reject
the reasoning of Scalia, supported by Kennedy and the three female justices.
Scalia offers the analogy with Grimm’s Fairy Tales, such as Hansel and Gretel.
Bad analogy.
When you read (or at least when I read) those fairy tales,
you do not identify with the creature which means to harm the children,
the wolf say.
Rather you identify with the children.
Is there anyone who identified with the wolf?
On the other hand, in the video games in question
the player is (or may be) specifically playing the role of
a person doing grievous violence against innocent victims.
There is no comparison.

The opinion of many social science professionals is that
playing such video games
makes the player more prone to commit violent acts in the future.
Although such games were not around in my youth,
and even now I have never played such a game,
my opinion as a man is in total agreement with the position just stated.
Surely role playing acts of violence makes it easier, psychologically,
to commit the acts you have just simulated.

Thus I believe that the SCOTUS decision permitting the sale of such games
will inevitably lead to a more violent and thus less successful
future male population.
And it would seem that four of the male justices essentially agreed with that.

On the other hand the justices who on theoretical, abstract grounds
voted to allow such sales
were not persuaded by such practical consequences.
Of those justices, I note that two, Sotomayor and Kagan, are childless women.
Could it be that their childless state leaves them
unaware of, insensitive to, or indifferent to,
the practical problems that parents have?
Or, and I must admit this is pure speculation,
could it be that they in fact desire a less effective male population,
one which will be ruled by women such as themselves?

Let me finally note an irony.
Democratic women have in my experience a great interest in preventing their male children from engaging in violence-promoting behavior.
And yet the Democratic female justices voted to permit it.

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