Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Eliminate the Supreme Court?

Hanno Kaiser suggests eliminating the Supreme Court. I don't really like his specific proposal, but I am curious about whether there might be a reason to say the Supreme Court cannot interpret the Constitution. Earlier I noted that I thought the Constitutional role of the Supreme Court in our system of political economy was to protect individual liberty. In contrast, both the Legislative and Executive branches of government respond to incentives that reflect the "will of the majority" (and sometimes the will of many minorities due to logrolling). It seems that if we are to minimize tyranny of the majority, we need a branch of government that can, and will, protect individual liberty as the priority of that branch of government. In our system of political economy, the only branch of government that could possibly want to protect individual liberty would seem to be the Judiciary.

If the Supreme Court decides it will defer to "the will of the majority," and if it will not protect individual liberty from tyranny of the majority, then why not just say it cannot interpret the Constitution? Let the Constitution be interpreted by the other two branches of government.

What do you think?

No comments: