Now It’s “Indefinite” Judicial Empathy
If, like me, you’ve mainly viewed Sonia Sotomayor as a sort of Hispanic-hued less-undangerous-than-you’d-like nominee for Supreme Court, Ed Whelan might push you over the edge to full opposition:
Sotomayor complains that “the public fails to appreciate the importance of indefiniteness in the law.” But beyond pointing out the uncontroversial fact that some indefiniteness is inevitable (for reasons (a), (b), and (d) in point 1), she nowhere makes the case that indefiniteness is somehow a positive good. She relies heavily on Jerome Frank’s legal realist views about the development of law, but nowhere explains why legislatures aren’t the proper forum for (to use Frank’s phrase) “adapting [law] to the realities of ever-changing social, industrial, and political conditions.”
Jurists like Sotomayor are transforming the law from a set of rules by which a society agrees to live into a philosophy decipherable only by an elite class of robed seers. And with a political bias.