Brilliant. Colorful. Visionary. Tenacious. Witty.
Since his appointment to the Supreme Court in 1986, Associate Justice Antonin Scalia has been described as all of these things, and for good reason. He is perhaps the best-known justice on the Supreme Court today and certainly the most controversial. Yet most Americans have probably not read even one of his several hundred Supreme Court opinions.
Collecting the writing of the Supreme Court's most outspoken and controversial justice, the author here presents speeches, rulings, and opinions that reveal Scalia's wit and intelligence, both on the bench and off.
©2004 Kevin A. Ring (P)2012 Regnery Publishing
I am an avid eclectic reader.
I thought this book was written by Antonin Scalia but in fact only the inserted section of the dissent is written by Scalia the story is actually written by Kevin A Ring. The book is his narrative about Scalia’s witty words in his dissents. The book provides a brief summary of Scalia’s life. He was born in Trenton New Jersey. Graduated from Georgetown University obtained his law degree from Harvard Law School. He worked for six years in private practice in Cleveland then was a professor of law at University of Chicago. He was appointed Assistant Attorney General under Nixon and Ford. In 1982 President Reagan appointed him to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC circuit. In 1986 President Ronald Reagan appointed Scalia to the Supreme Court. Scalia was the first Italian-American Justice and is a devote Catholic. The book was promoted to be about Scalia’s witty and scathing writing but I feel I learned more about Scalia the Justice. In the book Scalia explains his advocacy of textualism in statutory interpretation and originalism in Constitutional interpretation. He says he uses these rules of interpretation in every case as a guide to his decisions. He says he is a strong defender of the separation of powers between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government. Ring stated that Scalia gets more laughs during oral arguments and any other justice. Scalia states he has obtained dictionaries from the 1770 so he can better understand what the words meant to the people who ratified the Bill or Rights and the Constitution. He also obtains dictionaries from the time constitutional amendments were made as he stated the interpretation must be based on the mean of the words at the time of ratification. Scalia opposes the idea of a living constitution or the powers of the judiciary to modify the meaning to adapt to changing times. Scalia has voted to strike down laws on abortion, environmental protection, civil rights, affirmative action, race and gender discrimination. He vigorously defends the first amendment and the fourth amendment and the death penalty. After reading this book I feel I understand Scalia better and how he interprets the Constitution. Wyntner Woody did a good job narrating the book.
the performance was odd. the reading style seemed to change at intervals without any real relevance to the material. like the reader took a week off here and there, then didn't remember his tone from before. I haven't noticed that in other audible products.
I has suspected as much from Antonin Scalia! He's a remarkable intellect, and a great justice! There are many facets of American life that would be better had he been in the majority, instead of the minority!
It's too bad that a follower of the constitution like Mr. Scalia is so often in the minority on the court's decisions. But our supreme court has been rewriting the constitution through re-interpretation since the very first supreme court, which was selected by George Washington. I recommend "Original Meanings" by Rakove and "The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution" by Gutzman. These two go well with "Scalia Dissents".
This little book is good at outlining some of the social conflicts that have been dealt with by the Supreme Court in the USA. It is of course slightly biased as Justice Scalia understands his own points much better than what he disagrees with. the epilogue paints a quite odd picture of a USA would look like if his opinions had prevailed, imagine a gay couple being legally married in one state and arrested for practicing sodomy if they crossed a State Line. interesting arguments, which I am sure are correct at times and suffering from ideology at times, as he has almost deified a constitution. Always a good idea to let God take on the role of God and admit that creation is always imperfect.
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