Tuesday, October 18, 2005

My Fantasy Pick

Yes, I'm procrastinating whilst supposed to be drafting a presentation for Thursday (draft due tomorrow) and puzzling over metabolic mechanisms, but...PowerLine informs us that Michael Stokes Paulsen and John Yoo have an op-ed in the LA Times on how GOP senators ought to handle the Miers confirmation hearings.

Professor Paulsen, incidentally, is probably the best law professor* I've had so far (in a tie with Professor Matheson) and one of my all-time favorite professors in general, up there with Robbie George (the incomparable, and the source of my now-compulsive use of parentheticals**), Hadley Arkes, Lynn Enquist, William Jordan, and Theodore Ziolkowski.

Sadly, I did not have him for Con Law, but was able to take "War, National Security, and the Constitution" with him last Fall. He was intending to write a book on the subject, although I have no idea whether that project is still underway. I would recommend perusing his articles, even if the mere idea of reading law articles lulls you to sleep. Paulsen is actually on my SCOTUS Fantasy Short List (although his also holding a Divinity degree likely disqualifies him--so much for no religious tests...). The benefits of such an appointment would include, but not be limited to:

- a sharp, sophisticated legal mind willing to consider somewhat unorthodox positions in "sacred" areas (not attributes all Justices always display)
- questions from the bench that could push both counsel down their slippery slopes (I realize this is merely being a good jurist, but I just don't get the vibe that Miers would really do that)
- an interesting balance of both conservative and libertarian instincts
- age: he would be on the Court forever
- a real understanding of the principle Robbie George tried to impart to us in his classes: "consitutionalism and policy are not the same thing." Actually, he said it much better than that, but he's the brilliant and well-spoken one
- thoughtful opinions handed down on Starbucks napkins (perhaps up to three or four napkins, but rarely more than that)

*I should note, in case any Powers That Be of Mondale Hall ever stumble across this humble public diary of unsolicited opinion, that this reflects more the disconnect between myself and law school than it does on the actual school. My IP professor was also good, and our Civ Pro prof, Adam Samaha who unfortunately left for the U of C, was outstanding. That said, I will never actually get excited about law school; a highly limited assortment of legal subjects, maybe possibly perhaps.

** The rough guide to reading George: 1) Read it twice, 2) Check between the parentheses, the key points might well be hiding there... :)

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