on 29 October 2012
The author is a well known "originalist" when it comes to interpreting the US constitution. Judges of the US Supreme Court should not stray beyond the original words. These judges, says Levin, have no more wisdom or knowledge than the rest of us. What makes them so special is the unspoken question.
But Levin overlooks completely the same question about the framers of the constitution. Were they infallible? We're they imbued with some powers which meant that they got the constitution right for all time? Well the 27 subsequent amendments would suggest not. Unless the separation of powers arrangements have been achieved with uncanny accuracy there will always be tensions and to suggest that that is unhealthy seems strange.
So ultimately Levin convinced me only that the US Supreme Court tries to interpret the constitution in ways relevant to today. Where in the constitution are the judges to find guidance on, for example, video games?
I'm afraid ultimately the book simply did not convince me of Levin's argument.