Tuesday, March 15, 2005
The Divine Right of Nino
Via Brad DeLong, Don Herzog at Left2Right is taken aback by a remark of Justice Scalia's during oral argument in Van Orden v. Perry (one of the Ten Commandments cases, from Texas).
JUSTICE SCALIA: And when somebody goes by that monument, I don't think they're studying each one of the commandments. It's a symbol of the fact that government comes -- derives its authority from God. And that is, it seems to me, an appropriate symbol to be on State grounds.Did you all know the "fact" that our government derives its authority from God? I remember being taught in school something about that authority being derived from the consent of the governed, but those were more permissive times.
Read what Herzog and DeLong have to say, there's very little to add. If you are wondering whether Scalia's ravings stem from some internally consistent theory, Ed Brayton will set you straight. And a great series of posts at Blondesense demolishes the notion that the Ten Commandments are somehow the basis for our laws: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V.