The most intelligent people in the world.

August 6, 2007


June 26, 2007

Today the Supreme Court of the United States of America came down with three decisions on issues that will affect this country for potentially the rest of time. 

I have heard even lawyers describe the members of the Supreme Court as the most powerful people in the world.  The nine members of the Supreme Court have to rank in the top 100 of the world’s most intelligent people.  They are lawyers for goodness sakes.  At some point, probably in their early twenties, they had to pass the LSAT.  Then they had to get through law school, then they had to pass the bar exam, then they had to excel in their field and impress all the rest of the other lawyers in the world’s most prosperous and plutocratic society. 

Here are a few ways that I feel we could improve the Supreme Court.

Why are the world’s most intelligent people appointed by the President, and then made to go through the lobotomizing process of congressional (political) approval and to dance around the questions of how they will vote one way or another. To me, that just doesn’t make any sense.  Intelligence, the God-given ability to think and articulate clear decisions, knows no political constraints.  It cannot be painted blue or red.  The Supreme Court justices should be appointed by the American Bar association in some ritualistic, secret ceremony similar to the appointing of a new pope.  Or maybe a group of objective soccer Moms.  On second thought, scrap that last idea. They’d be too liberal.

Why are the world’s most intelligent people voting on issues such as Bongs 4 Jesus?  If the Court has jurisdiction over controversies to which the United States shall be a Party, then why don’t we use this body to guide us on the difficult, polarizing issues of the day such as immigration reform and the war in Iraq?  The Constitution was not clear on the exact powers of the Supreme Court – it was left up to Congress and the Court itself to define its role.  Let’s just have the court stick to big issues.

Why are the world’s most intelligent people still using confusing Latin terms in their judgments?  Habeas corpus.  Mens rea. Ultra posse nemo obligatur.  This last one sounds like a rally call for the justice of the Wild West. Enough already with the pedantic Latin terms.  Speak English.  Or at least translate the Latin terms into a living language like Spanish so at least half the country can understand them.

And lastly, why do we need nine people on the Supreme Court?  I defy anybody to name all nine Supreme Court justices.  Why not go back to the original five that we had at the time of the Constitution? Or go down to three?  We need something that is a little more marketable.

In fact, here’s what I think.  Let’s have the nine justices square off in a Survivor-like TV series with the winner becoming Supreme Being – The World’s Most Intelligent Person.  Give him or her a God-like status almost like an Uber President.  Well, let’s not use foreign languages.  We could have a Super President.  Whenever we feel as though things are going to hell in a hand basket, we could turn to Super President to tell us what to do. 

US Public:
Do we build a fence across the Mexican border or not?

Super President, John Roberts:
No.  That’s a dumb idea.  Form a common market between Mexico, Canada and United States similar to what they are doing in Europe.  Create one common currency.  Remember Adam Smith. 

US Public:
Do you grant citizenship to the 12 million illegal immigrants?

Super President, John Roberts:
What don’t you understand about illegal?

US Public:
What do we do with Guantanamo?

Super President, John Roberts:
That’s a habeas corpus maximus posse a priori nemo obligatur issue?

US Public:
Huh?  I thought you weren’t allowed to use Latin.

Super President, John Roberts:
Yeah, it’s called Wikipedia.  Use it.

US Public:
Okay.  What about Iraq?

Super President, John Roberts:
That’s a tough one.  Let me talk it over with the Vice President and President.


Alan Cooper