Tag Archives: foreign law

Washington Post Criticizes Ginsburg Over Foreign Law

Citing Foreign Law,” Washington Post, 21 March 2006, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/03/20/AR2006032001674.html (from NRO’s Bench Memos).

I’ve applauded Chief Justice Roberts successful attack on so-called international law. Roberts’ victory is all the more encouraging because of the division of the Supreme Court on a closely related matter: foreign law.

Foreign law, which has been attacked by the Attorney General and Justice Scalia, differs from “international law” in that it is actually law, somewhere. While there was once a real international law based on the Catholic Church, in modern times “international law” means at best the socialization of states and at worst a strange morality.


When applied to cases in the United States, both are threats to our freedom and democracy. Freedoms we hold dear, like free speech, are routinely ignored by other countries like China and Germany. At best, an “honest” use of foreign laws by the Courts would lead to a lessening of freedoms in the United States, as are laws are harmonized with the less-free acts of foreign parliaments and potentates.

However, those lovers of “foreign law” are not so honest. They wish to use foreign law to get opinions that would be impossible otherwise. For example, liberal justices like Ruth Bader Ginsberg will use European criminal law (which is more liberal than American criminal law) to liberalize our justice system, but have not (yet) used European abortion laws (which are more conservative than American abortion laws) to make life safer for the unborn.

Don’t take my word for it: take the Washington Post‘s:

At the same time, Justice Antonin Scalia offers some reasonable criticisms of how the court has used foreign precedents — that is, selectively, when foreign law supports results that the court cannot justify based on American authorities alone. As Justice Scalia points out, justices cite foreign precedents in capital cases, where European law is far more liberal than American law, but not in abortion cases, where it is more restrictive.

Ginsberg, recognizing her weak position, has compared those who oppose permissive use of foreign laws to the old Apartheid government of South Dakota.

Of course, she also hides behind sex stereotypes and complains of right wing terrorists-sympathizers in Congress, so it’s not surprising behavior for her.

Antonin Scalia Bitchslaps "Foreign Law"

Scalia Asks: What Does France Know?,” U.S. News & World Report, 7 November 2005, http://www.usnews.com/usnews/politics/whispers/articles/051107/7whisplead.htm.

While enjoying Thanksgiving, grokking Foreign Dispatches, and reading Freakonomics, I couldn’t help cheering at judicial hero, Antonin Scalia. I wonder what Big Cheese thinks of this:

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is stepping up his campaign against judges using foreign laws to decide cases at home. And he’s doing it with tart sarcasm. We ran into him last week at an American Spectator dinner, where he poked fun at fellow justices who like overseas opinions. “It will seem much more like real legal opinion if one can cite a foreign opinion to support the philosophic, moral, or religious conclusion or pronouncement,” he said with a sneer. “You can put it right there in the opinion. It looks like legal opinion. It says so and so versus so and so.” The justice considered the most conservative on the court added, “I dare say that few of us here would want our life or liberty subject to the dispensation of French or Italian criminal justice.”

Pimp that ho, my daddio!

American Attorney General Blasts Foreign Law

Gonzales Weighs in on International Law,” by Mark Sherman, Associated Press, 19 October 2005, http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,1280,-5353130,00.html (from The Corner).

I wonder… does this make him an unindicted war criminal too? I hope the universal jurisidction of the Leftist Ulema international law doesn’t catch up to our AG!

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales on Tuesday joined critics of the use of foreign law in Supreme Court opinions, calling it anti-democratic and unworkable.

Foreign judges and legislators are not accountable to the American people. If our courts rely on a foreign judge’s opinion or a foreign legislature’s enactment, then that foreign judge or legislature binds us on key constitutional issues,” Gonzales said in a speech at George Mason University Law School in Arlington, Va.

alberto_gonzales
My Hero, Alberto Gonzales

“If an American judge wants to find a law consistent with his or her personal opinion, it can be found. Chief Justice Roberts in his confirmation hearing compared this to looking over the crowd and picking out one’s friends. As a practical matter, it may be impossible for even the most conscientious judge to avoid being arbitrarily selective in the use of foreign law,” Gonzales said.

So is Alberto Gonzales part of the lunatic right? Or is he just playing fast and loose with words?