An independent judiciary helps protect us from tyranny. But it works better when judges take their jobs seriously, unlike recently retired federal appeals court Judge Richard Posner:
“I pay very little attention to legal rules, statutes, constitutional provisions,” Posner told the New York Times in an interview published Monday. …
When confronting a case with some form of legal obstacle in the way, the former 7th Circuit Court of Appeals judge said he would look to circumvent whatever prevented him from reaching his desired result.
“When you have a Supreme Court case or something similar, they’re often extremely easy to get around,” Posner said.
When judges make law instead of interpreting law in the light of the Constitution, they do not defend us from tyrants, but rather become tyrants themselves.
Posner decided to finally retire at age 78 because he had “lost interest” in the cases he arbitrarily decides.
[H]e recently began to wonder, “Why didn’t I quit 10 years ago?”
He was appointed in 1981. He should have quit 36 years ago.
Imagine if a surgeon, having announced his retirement, proclaimed that he had performing his job while drunk. You might wonder, if he got away with it, how many more like him are still on the job?