18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
An Earth-Shattering Work of Common sense!!,
This review is from: The Tempting of America (Paperback)It's hard to imagine a neutral opinion about Robert Bork. Mostly, he is exalted or dismissed because of supposed political views he holds. Liberals dispise his 'anti-abortion' record and conservatives cheer his 'pro-religion' stance. For the record, he is a conservative libertarian (if there really is such a thing) but those who are looking for political argument will find none here.
In fact, he admirably restrains with a capital 'R' from political discussion in this book. Instead, he outlays his judicial philosophy of 'original intent'; quite simply, the judge as an extention of a law as seen by its original legislators. Unfortunately, this leads to some results that make modern day liberals cringe. Abortion, private discrimination and the like are nowhere in the constitution thus becoming state and personal issues under amendment X (how many people really pay attention to that amendment anyhow?). Despite these results, Bork insists on judicial neutrality aware that the legislature is the ONLY branch that should have their eye on results. The judiciary simply takes the WRITTEN law and upholds it.
The only thing I have a problem with is that sometimes Bork takes a strict textual approach and sometimes not, For example, his view of the 'equal protection' clause as a procedural, not a substantive issue relies strictly on the text of the fourteenth amendment. It would stand to reason that his first amendment view should also rely on text but 'Congress shall make no law..' apparently wasn't what the founders really meant after all.
For those not schooled in the current debate over various methods of constitutional interpretation, I would read Jack Rakove's "Interpreting the Constitution" and maybe Antonin Scalia's "Matter of interpretation" first as more views are given than in this book. Again, I stress, if you are looking for Bork's assertion of political views, THIS IS NOT THE BOOK!! Read his other one.