Philosophy post warning!
Smite wrote “The EU members have developped a certain political culture in the last 40 years, and most important principle is the rule of law and the separation of legislative, executive and jurisdiction. These fundamental principles are being raped by Hungary and Poland and suing them is the only rightful action.” My reply was “The [2024 EU] election we’ll defeat them and throw the “rule of law and the separation of legislative, executive and jurisdiction” to the ash heap of history.”
It wasn’t a rage-answer, I do believe it, though I want to explain and clarify. First thing first, I don’t think elected partisan officials should decide criminal or divorce cases. In that sense I do want an independent judiciary and never met anyone who didn’t. What I mean is that the judiciary should have no power either over the laws (ruling them unconstitutional) or the politicians (locking them up for corruption).
Let’s start with the first: if the country has agreed-upon constitution or established laws, it seems a good idea to prevent a bad politician create laws that conflict these. It is a good idea. The problem is that the judges who’d decide if there is a conflict are just as “bad” as the politicians.
You don’t have to look further than the “Travel ban” of Trump which was OK-ed by the Supreme Court 3 times now (one time with 9-0), but lower court judges keep blocking it with new excuses, causing delay until the SC smacks them down again. The most notorious judge became a literal meme for his efforts:
While this is funny, the democratically elected president cannot implement one of his signature issues because of these clowns. So the will of the people expressed by their vote can not be done because of “separation of powers”.
The meme-judge is of course only the tip of the iceberg. The Supreme Court is a problem in itself, due to being completely partisan. People openly discuss “liberal” and “conservative” justices who regularly vote 4-5 according to party lines. The lefties are losing their minds over Brett Kavanaugh to the point of promoting Pizzagate level nonsense against him, because they – rightfully – believe that he’ll always rule for conservatives.
This couldn’t possibly happen in Hungary. While formally they have the ability, Orbán sent every old judge into retirement and promoted loyalists to their places. If he loses the next election, I’ll support the new government doing the same. However I believe it would be much better if no democratically elected government could be stopped by activist judges. The government should be able to make any rules, even conflicting ones. If the people don’t like the mess, they can show them the door.
Corruption is bad. Politicians shouldn’t steal and they do all the time. Shouldn’t the law apply to them when they aren’t doing politician stuff, but simple human crimes? Of course it should. But who will apply the law? Honest, apolitical career investigators of course, like these two:
For those who didn’t follow US politics, these lovebirds were “investigating” the Trump-Russia hoax and did everything in their power to frame him for treason while also making sure that Hillary Clinton gets out of her private server investigation unharmed.
You could tell that they are an exception. Corrupted scum who got where they definitely shouldn’t be. But there is a serious problem: I wouldn’t have done better in their place. I would have also done everything to cover up for my candidate and frame the other one. I would do it for the same reason they did: I’d believe it’s the right thing to do. My candidate is the good one and the other is a disaster for the country. If I can’t do it, no one can. I believe there isn’t a single man on the planet who could serve as impartial investigator in a case against a politician.
I’m however capable of realizing that these wannabe dictators didn’t: that no one made me king(maker) and it’s not my call, but of the people’s. If the majority supports the other candidate, it’s their way or the highway (to exile). Forcing my way would be nothing short of dictatorship. Ergo, the only way to protect democracy is making sure that no judges and no prosecutors can touch our politicians, even when they’d deserve it. Only “we the people” should be able to punish them.
A personal note: I was a supporter of liberal democracy all my life. I didn’t even vote for Orbán in 2014. The US election, the Russia hoax, the sabotage of Trump by judges turned me into a rabid illiberal, a rallygoing Orbán fan and a supporter of Putin, Erdogan, Netanyahu, Duterte and co. I believe the liberal countries are in the state of “independent institution capture”, where the checks and balances are in the hands of a small minority.
Sunday morning update: I hope it’s not you Smite: