First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life



First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American LifeToday S United States Supreme Court Consists Of Nine Intriguingly Varied Justices And One Overwhelming Contradiction Compared To Its Revolutionary Predecessor, The Rehnquist Court Appears Deceptively Passive, Yet It Stands As Dramatically Ready To Defy Convention As The Warren Court Of The 1950s And 60s Now Kenneth W Starr Who Served As Clerk For One Chief Justice, Argued Twenty Five Cases As Solicitor General Before The Supreme Court, And Is Widely Regarded As One Of The Nation S Most Distinguished Practitioners Of Constitutional Law Offers Us An Incisive And Unprecedented Look At The Paradoxes, The Power, And The People Of The Highest Court In The Land In First Among Equals Ken Starr Traces The Evolution Of The Supreme Court From Its Beginnings, Examines Major Court Decisions Of The Past Three Decades, And Uncovers The Sometimes Surprising Continuity Between The Precedent Shattering Warren Court And Its Successors Under Burger And Rehnquist He Shows Us, As No Other Author Ever Has, The Very Human Justices Who Shape Our Law, From Sandra Day O Connor, The Court S Most Pivotal And Perhaps Most Powerful Player, To Clarence Thomas, Its Most Original Thinker And He Explores The Present Court S Evolution Into A Lawyerly Tribunal Dedicated To Balance And Consensus On The One Hand, And Zealous Debate On Hotly Contested Issues Of Social Policy On The Other On Race, The Court Overturned Affirmative Action And Held Firm To An Undeviating Color Blind Standard On Executive Privilege, The Court Rebuffed Three Presidents, Both Republican And Democrat, Who Fought To Increase Their Power At The Expense Of Rival Branches Of Government On The 2000 Presidential Election, The Court Prevented What It Deemed A Runaway Florida Court From Riding Roughshod Over State Law Illustrating How In Our System Of Government, The Supreme Court Is Truly The First Among Equals Compelling And Supremely Readable, First Among Equals Sheds New Light On The Most Frequently Misunderstood Legal Pillar Of American Life.

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Reading ➽ First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life Author Kenneth W. Starr – Heartforum.co.uk
  • Hardcover
  • 352 pages
  • First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life
  • Kenneth W. Starr
  • English
  • 08 February 2017
  • 0446527564

10 thoughts on “First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life

  1. Yifan (Evan) Xu (Hsu) says:

    Despite of my limited legal background, there is always an impulsive thrust urging me to understand the legal framework and how it fits in the society One of the interesting topic I came across while staying in Beijing is the Supreme Court and its basic roles and functions Before focusing on this book, we shall come back to the basic understanding of the tripartite division of powers among the legislative, executive and judicial branches, which was advocated by Montesequieu, Hamilton and Despite of my limited legal background, there is always an impulsive thrust urging me to understand the legal framework and how it fits in the society One of the interesting topic I came across while staying in Beijing is the Supreme Court and its basic roles and functions Before focusing on this book, we shall come back to the basic understanding of the tripartite division of powers among the legislative, executive and judicial branches, which was advocated by Montesequieu, Hamilton and others The title first among equals essentially infers that judicial branch the Supreme Court is the authority or the hidden leader to the other two branches even though allegedly the three branches share the same rank One can be somewhat certain that the system s early designers failed to reach the idea of first among equal Rather, they proposed that comparing to executive and legislative branches, the judiciary, from the nature of its functions, will always be the least dangerous branch to the political rights of the Constitution Thus, idealy there will be three questions regarding US modern Supreme Court 1 Is the Supreme Court the branch of government with the authoritative role in vital issues that deeply affect American life and politics , or simply put Is it first among equals 2 Is the Supreme Court the least dangerous branch comparing to legislative and executive branches 3 Can first among equals and least dangerous co exist This book deals with all three questions but with an emphasis on the first one And it does a good job The center of the issue is stated by the author as the following In a constitutional democracy, the Constitution is the ultimate authority, binding on all branches and levels of government But the Constitution, since it is a written document, must be interpreted Who is to do that May each branch of government interpret the Constitution for itself What if the president or Congress reads the Constitution differently from the Supreme Court Which branch prevails Initially, branches are co equal But in Marbur v Madison 1803 , the Chieft Justice John Marshall mandated that It is emphatically the province and duty of the judicial department to say what the law is This seems to be the ideal situation to the author He argues that if who has the correst interpretations of constitutional matters remains unsettled, there is always a propensity for sword or the purse to substitute genuine actions of law interpretation that is grounded in principle And judiciay branch is the least dangerous branch, if it strickly restrict to its assigned functions Therefore, judicial branch is the authority of vital issues, especially regarding constitutional matters At the same time, it is the least dangerous branch by confining its duties Thus, both roles co exist This book is a good introductory book on the subject and deserve the merit for three reasons It adequately addresses the origin of the Supreme Court and background of the underlying issue It contains numerous well known case studies illuminating the principles behind functions of the Supreme Court it is written in plain English, which make the general public and young punks like me without legal background the intended readers For those who are interested in subjects regarding the Supreme Court of The U.S., here is the recommend reading list Some of the works provide a totally different perspective of the Supreme Court

  2. Rachael says:

    Although a bit outdated the author is waiting on the outcome of several cases dating back to 2002 , this is a great overview of the major cases that have shaped American constitutional jurisprudence and the intrusive place that the high court takes in American life today Starr investigates the theme and tone of the cautious Rehnquist court and its juxtaposition to theradical Burger and Warren courts, specifically, the unwillingness of the Rehnquist court to reexamine controversial decisi Although a bit outdated the author is waiting on the outcome of several cases dating back to 2002 , this is a great overview of the major cases that have shaped American constitutional jurisprudence and the intrusive place that the high court takes in American life today Starr investigates the theme and tone of the cautious Rehnquist court and its juxtaposition to theradical Burger and Warren courts, specifically, the unwillingness of the Rehnquist court to reexamine controversial decisions of past courts in the name of stare decisis a theme which ironically, could be considered radical in itself I recommend this book to anyone who does not fully understand the importance of voting people into office who will appoint justices who will approach the interpretation of the constitution from an originalist perspective, and not one open to the whims of personal bias

  3. Brent Showalter says:

    Fabulous book It was well written and the first legal book I ve been able to understand It is incredible to learn about the impact of the Supreme court decisions on daily life and to discover how those decisions are reached.

  4. Jeff Ricks says:

    It was an interesting read It made me fairly frustrated with the politicization of the Supreme Court, but that was Ken Starr s goal I think.

  5. Ashley Sasnett says:

    Not sure how I will feel about the author s ideas on the Supreme Court but I am open to itAnyone read this one Is he the devil incarnate

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