Category Archives: SCOTUS For The Average Joe

Average Joe SCOTUS: Quarles v. United States

All around scumbag Jamar Quarles broke into a home years ago. And as such, was deemed a violent felon. Then, because of this, was not allowed to be carrying a gun, which this dumb motherfucker proceeded to do.

As such, his possession felony sent this idiot scumbag to prison for 204 months. But Quarles hired some scumbag ambulance chaser who was trying to get Quarles off on a lesser sentence.

Since the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”) makes three felonies a condition for being considered as a career criminal, Quarles and his hired ambulance chaser were trying to argue that his burglary from years ago, which he didn’t dispute he did, wasn’t a burglary, because he didn’t form intent to burgle until after he was in the home, as opposed to the idea he broke in for the purposes of burgling.

Yeah, it’s one of those ridiculous semantic bullshit arguments I despise, but hey! At least he’s imaginative. Here’s one particular exchange that went to his point.

Stephen G. Breyer

Is there any reason to think that the person who stays in the bank, and then, ah, what a nice idea, I’ll help myself to some money, is any the less violent or at risk of violence or risk of — is there any less risk there than when he gets the idea of going into the bank two weeks earlier?

Jeremy C. Marwell

Yes.

I think the — the — the existence of pre-formed intent, so somebody who comes to the bank with the advance plan to commit another crime shows that they will be more resolute in their desire to accomplish that crime. It may result in them bringing a weapon because they know they’re going to do that.

And I think it aligns with this — with the fact that ACCA is governing career criminals, trying to select people who have that profit motive to do multiple crimes. And you look at the fact patterns of the cases that are really the point of disagreement between us and the government, you know, Gaines from the New York Court of Appeals, a homeless person who breaks into a warehouse to get out of the cold, while he’s in there decides to grab a jacket and is caught coming out, or the case of young people who break into a house not — not intending to steal something — this is the JNS case from Oregon — take something while they’re in there and caught on the way out.

So after losing in lower courts, they ended up at SCOTUS who was asked to define burglary further, and determine if intent had to be present before he wrongly entered the property he then burgled.

SCOTUS found him and his bullshit argument less than impressive, and unanimously told him to go fuck himself. Judgment for United States.

Hear oral arguments, and read about the case here.

Average Joe SCOTUS: Mitchell v. Wisconsin

Fourth Amendment

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Facts of the case

So this drunkard Mitchell was being a total piece of shit, driving under the influence. In Wisconsin, the legal limit is 0.08% blood alcohol level. This motherfucker was 0.222, nearly four times above the legal limit.

This motherfucker was so drunk in fact, he passed out in the squad car, so the cops had to take his dumb ass to the hospital instead of jail.

At the hospital, he passed out again, so the cops had the hospital take a blood test to determine how drunk this motherfucker was. The astute of you will say, “Hey, that’s a non-consensual search without a warrant.” You’d be right. But Wisconsin has a law that says if you obtain a driver’s license, you automatically agree to such a search.

Anyway, Mitchell thinks this is some bullshit end-run around the 4th amendment. So after trying his level best in Wisconsin court to get them to drop the results of this search, they were like “fuck you, you drunk motherfucker. We need to get your drunk ass off the streets.”

While SCOTUS acknowledges the exigent-circumstances rule allows for a blood test when someone is unconscious, it would have to be a situation where they needed to do so to prevent destruction of evidence, or to save a life. But in this case, the police did have time to get a warrant. So 5:4 decision for Mitchell.

While Ginsburg, Kagan, and Sotomayor dissented, they argued that the exigent circumstances rule shouldn’t apply to this bullshit rule in Wisconsin. That the state can’t create a law that basically exempts them from the limits in the Constitution. So they seemed to weirdly side with Mitchell, while still dissenting from the majority opinion which allows the rule, but requires a warrant be obtained in this case, since they had time to do so.

Hear oral arguments or read about the case here.

 

Average Joe SCOTUS: Food Marketing Institute v. Argus Leader Media

We all know about food stamps, right? I know it’s called SNAP now, as the government tries to rebrand it in such a way as to make users in the program not be made to feel bad about taking from other taxpayers, when they absolutely should.

Well, these hacks at Argus Media were presumably writing some story about people using the SNAP program, and submitted a FOIA request for information about the program, which included how much money individual stores were getting from the program.

At first, the USDA who manages SNAP declined to provide the requested information based on FOIA exemption three, which says they cannot disclose info that’s prohibited from being disclosed by federal law. But the lower courts were like, “What fucking law, exactly?”

So since they knew that was some bullshit, they went for exemption 4, which protects:

Trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from a person and privileged or confidential.

The courts had told the USDA to give over the information, and the USDA was all set to comply, but then these assholes at the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), believing they’d be harmed if this information was released, filed the appeal to block the information accordingly.

So here we are at SCOTUS trying to literally determine WTF “confidential” means.

First, SCOTUS decided that FMI had standing to sue, since they could incur damages if their competition found out the information being requested. Then they decided as such, the assholes at Argue didn’t need to know this information, and told them to get fucked. Confidential means something that company A has a legit purpose in hiding from company B, which this information would be.

6:3 judgement for FMI, with Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Breyer dissenting on how they defined “confidentiality” while still siding to protect FMI.

Average Joe SCOTUS: Fort Bend County Texas v. Davis

Lois Davis worked for Fort Bend County in Texas. Her boss at the time, we’ll call him Scummy McScummerson, apparently fancied her, and decided to go for it. But Lois wasn’t having that shit, and filed a sexual harassment claim.

After an investigation Scummy McScummerson resigned, and Lois was assigned a new boss. Her new boss, being friends with Scummy, decided to put Lois in the cross-hairs, and get rid of her.

One day, Lois needed the day off for a religious event, applied for the day off, and her new asshole boss declined. But Lois was like, “Fuck this shit, I’m going.” So she straight up ghosted those motherfuckers and went to church.

So then her new asshole boss was like, “Bingo, I can fire this bitch now.”

But Lois ain’t no pushover. She took their asses to court, and now dropped a new bomb on them, the “religious discrimination” bomb, that is.

Here’s the thing. There were outlined procedures in place for Lois to follow in appealing her termination and shit, but she didn’t pass Go, and didn’t collect $200. She went straight to court. So the assholes in Fort Bend tried to say she circumvented the process, and therefore had no case.

Davis was like, “Fuck you, and your process. I’m taking your trifling asses straight to court anyway.”

As usual, multiple federal circuits have two different precedents for the same god damn law, because every fucking law is simply not black and white. Most are grayer than gray.

So SCOTUS listened to all the arguments, and were like, “We’re the courts. We don’t give a fuck about your piss ant procedural rules. Fuck you. If someone wants to ask our opinion, they can come on in and do it. Any court that disagrees, well fuck you, too. Do as your told bitches. Thug SCOTUS life!”

Unanimous decision for Davis.

Hear oral arguments, or read about the case here.

Average Joe SCOTUS: United States v. Davis

OK, y’all. Let’s talk about an important legal principle. The idea of constitutionally vague. The “Vagueness Doctrine” is simply a principle that says because of the 5th and 14th amendments which guarantee due process, the vagueness doctrine require that citizens be given enough information to clearly know what could get their dumb ass landed in jail. You can’t write a law that “might” land you in jail—that’s bullshit. You and I need to know the line we cannot cross and expect to be safe from punishment, and that line should be clear and understandable.

This was famously the argument against Wade, in Roe v. Wade, along with many others, and now it’s what this case is all about. You see, this douchebag Maurice Lamont Davis, and his douchebag buddy Andre Levon Glover decided to rob several Texas gas stations. To make it even more fun, they even took cops on a high speed chase after one robbery.

Firearms law 18 U.S.C. § 924(c), which addresses the penalty has two parts. An elements clause and a residual clause. The case focuses on the residual clause which says:

(B) that by its nature, involves a substantial risk that physical force against the person or property of another may be used in the course of committing the offense.

So, because some of their convictions were in part, due to this clause, they believed that saying there was a substantial risk, is not clearly defined as violence. You’re asking a jury to ask what the offender might have done, versus asking what they did do. And thus, they think that’s vague AF.

SCOTUS gave it a listen, and in a mixed 5:4 majority, with Gorsuch siding with the the left-leaning justices, Davis was given the nod. He’s still going the fuck to jail—his scumbag ass deserves it, but at least it won’t be as bad.

On a side note, Sotomayor mentions congress has a redraft of this statute on the docket. So clearly, even they know they wrote this law shitty AF. But in the meantime, SCOTUS sees fit to tell them they fucked up anyway.

Hear oral arguments, or read about the case here.

Average Joe SCOTUS: McDonough v. Smith

This case is the ugly side of politics at its finest folks. Two election officials in Troy New York, LeTorno and McDonough, were indicted in 2009 on election fraud charges. It didn’t look good, y’all. They were handcuffed and everything. People were forging signatures, and giving them to these two ass-clowns, who then submitted them accordingly. If they knew they were forged when they accepted them and submitted them, they were guilty. But it appears, they were just ignorant AF, and didn’t have a fucking clue.

They were eventually acquitted on all charges, and it appeared that the prosecutor Youel Smith engaged in his own level of corruption by trying to prosecute these ignorant fucks, when they were clearly just dumb-asses who knew nothing.

Either way, after McDonough was acquitted, he filed a Section 1983 claim (basically suing the government for bad acts against the people) against Smith, for malicious prosecution. So heres where it gets even more fun. Because there was a mistrial and shit initially, this whole process of going after McDonough took a while. And a 1938 malicious prosecution has a 3-year statute of limitations (SOL), Smith’s defense decided to say that three years had passed since they knew about whatever evidence they had showing malicious prosecution, and therefore, they were too fucking late.

But then McDonough’s team was like, “Listen mother fucker. We were wrapped up in a criminal trial because of your corrupt ass. We had to deal with that shit first, before we could come after you with a 1938, because we can’t run two trials at the same fucking time. We’re not Superman.

The district court agreed to dismiss based on the statute of limitations argument, and the second circuit agreed. But they were like, “We know other circuits have decided that SOL starts when the trial in question ends, to give you time to prepare accordingly, but we don’t give a fuck. We agree with the district court, so fuck off, McDonough, you corrupt motherfucker. You got away with this shit—be happy about that. Now get out of here.”

McDonough not being impressed with their bullshit argument, took it to SCOTUS, and they were asked to resolve it accordingly.

SCOTUS was less impressed with Smith’s argument, the district court, and the second circuit. They sided 6:3 with McDonough, and wished Smith good luck on his upcoming lawsuit.

On a side note, I’m also pretty fucking sure Smith’s petitioner Thomas J. O’Connor was drunk or high AF when he argued this. Just listen to it. I’ve had bowel movements argue more coherently than this mother fucker on this day. Jesus H. Christ! No wonder he lost. Like seriously, listen to that shit below.

Hear oral arguments or read about the case here.

Average Joe SCOTUS: North Carolina Department of Revenue v. The Kimberley Rice Kaestner 1992 Family Trust

Back in 1992, this dude Joe Rice set up a trust in New York for his three kids. We’re all gonna die someday, gotta take care of that shit before it happens. Then in 2002, the trust was broken up into three separate trust for his kids individually, and each of their kids, Joe’s grandchildren. But they were still based in New York.

None of his kids at the time the trust was set up, lived in North Carolina. But eventually, Kim found herself living there. And when a new trustee was appointed in 2005 to manage the trust, those greedy commie motherfuckers in North Carolina decided to start taxing the trust. The whole fucking trust…you know…the one that was in New York and not North Carolina? Clearly, NC is learning from California.

North Carolina’s argument was that, “Hey, we provide protections for this ungrateful bitch, and we pay for that via taxes, so we want our motherfucking cut.”

So Kim was like, “this is some bullshit!”

So off to SCOTUS to try to get her fucking trust back.

At one point, and incredulous Justice Breyer said:

Stephen G. Breyer

Look, the trustee lives in New York, okay? The settlor is in New York.

All the administration is in New York. There is one thing that’s going to happen in North Carolina.

The thing that’s going to happen in North Carolina is if she is there when it’s distributed, she’ll get some money. Okay? Which you’re totally free to tax. But that isn’t what you want to tax. You want to tax all these things which are everyone except her is in New York, and moreover, we don’t even know if she’ll ever get the money. Now there’s something wrong with that. I don’t know, it doesn’t say specifically about trusts in the Constitution, but, thus, I mean, lots of trusts say there are 10 beneficiaries, each one lives in a different state, and I, the trustee, have total discretion as to who give this money to and maybe I’ll give it to none of them. So here’s a woman who might get none of it, and you want to tax that.

Is that right? Do I have the facts right?

Matthew W. Sawchak

I would — I would point out some additional facts, Your Honor.

First of all, Ms. Kaestner did actually receive this money.

Stephen G. Breyer

Well, is that — is that — I’m talking about the law of North Carolina.

And I’d only add to this that, by the way, if the trust has a million dollars extra income in year 4, and if you say she’s entitled to that, she isn’t going to get it ’til year 14, at most, do you discount the increased value of the trust by the time she has to wait? Because she has nothing that increased in value more than the million discounted by the probability that she will ever get it and when.

Matthew W. Sawchak

So —

Stephen G. Breyer

Is that how the law works in North Carolina, is what I’m asking. And, of course, I suspect the answer is no, but go ahead. (Laughter.)

The solicitor for Kaestner rightly pointed out, Kaestner didn’t receive a fucking dime while North Carolina did. And there was no guarantee she would ever receive a dime while living in North Carolina, or not at all if she dies, or the trust somehow bankrupted itself. But in the meantime, North Carolina was taking their cut.

Clearly, North Carolina is whack on this bullshit, and SCOTUS wasn’t having it. Surprising unanimous decision for Mrs. Kaestner. A clear, “Go fuck yourself” to those greedy commies in North Carolina.

On a side note, this is a great example of SCOTUS being their own best skeptics. You cannot listen to this case, and think Sotomayor was ever going to side with Kaestner. Her questions seemed like she was firmly in the camp of North Carolina. But since it was a unanimous decision, it would appear she was just truly questioning her own beliefs, and came to the conclusion her own beliefs were against the principles laid forth in the constitution.