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January 30, 2012


Kyu Ho Youm

The article is an informative summary of Dean Chemerinsky's excellent keynote speech. His thoughtful suggestions deserve careful attention from those who wish for more, not less, access to the Supreme Court. In one way or another, the Supreme Court is trailing, not leading, the rest of the world in making judicial proceedings accessible, especially in the global 21st century. I hope the Chemerinsky speech will be available to the public ASAP, for it should be widely disseminate--yes, well beyond the BYU Law School.


The author ignores the real problem with the Court -- It has become openly political. When justices attend and speak at political fundraisers, and a justice's wife gets more than double his salary for political advocacy on behalf of people with a strong and extreme political agenda that he fails to disclose, then the public would be crazy NOT to question the ethics of the court and the validity of its opinions. It looks like the court is for sale, just like our politicians. The only way to address this is to STOP IT! If a justice and his family cannot live on the salary the justice is paid, then that justice should resign.


The idea of explaining each refusal is imho off but no one bats a 1.00.

The clear headnotes idea makes sense. This would be particularly helpful when five justices split on the reasoning. The headnotes can get particularly confusing there, including apparently to lower courts.

A summary of concurrences and dissents would be helpful too.


The court receives roughly a petition for cert every hour (9000 cases divided over 365 days); I think that as punishment for his inane proposal to explaining each denial, Dean Chemerinsky should be forced to write the denial memo in every case filed until he recants. People familiar with the court's docket, however, will realize that that's cruel and unusual punishment, and he'd break before day's end.

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