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Monday, June 02, 2014

Please stop, Chief

From Bond v. United States:

"[T]he global need to prevent chemical warfare does not require the Federal Government to reach into the kitchen cupboard." (in fairness, the kitchen cupboard language was in the Third Circuit's opinion). Earlier, Roberts posed a hypothetical about "[a]ny parent . . . when, exasperated by the children’s repeated failure to clean the goldfish tank, he considers poisoning the fish with a few drops of vinegar." (Seriously? Seems like extreme parenting).

I have wondered before whether Robert's penchant for these flourishes makes for good writing or whether it is incredibly distracting. I am still wondering.

Posted by Howard Wasserman on June 2, 2014 at 02:23 PM in Howard Wasserman, Law and Politics | Permalink


Marc, I forgot about that one. It tied to the very lyrical (although less bothersome, somehow) introduction to the opinion, which told of the John Singer Sargent painting "Gassed," a life-size painting depicting men hurt in a WW I gas attack.

Posted by: Howard Wasserman | Jun 3, 2014 12:02:25 AM

Ms Bond might have merely wanted to harm the paramour in a mild way but curious if use of the deadly chemical, in public places where third parties (including children) could touch it, was assuringly likely only to harm people with burned thumbs. I think not.

Even her crime was meant to hurt an adult, not goldfish. The trivialization of her crime in both Bond opinions was a bit much.

Posted by: Joe | Jun 2, 2014 5:04:51 PM

"There are no life-sized paintings of Bond's rival washing her thumb."

Long time since I laughed out loud reading a Supreme Court opinion.

Posted by: Marc DeGirolami | Jun 2, 2014 3:50:03 PM

And what good does it do in a case where he sided with the left on the Court in order to duck the serious constitutional questions? Obviously Soto et al. don't object to his flourishes, because they aren't operative.

Posted by: AndyK | Jun 2, 2014 3:07:39 PM

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