by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Hugh Hewitt‘s latest syndicated column reacts to a recent interview he conducted with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, in which the justice says, “”In the 17 years I’ve been there, I’ve never once heard a voice raised in anger. Never.”
Anger and emotion, raised voices and rolling eyes are an inevitable if unpleasant feature of nearly all of the private sector and most of the public sector as well.
Many of the entrepreneurs, most of the lawyers and all of the elected officials with whom I have worked over the past three decades have had their moments of anger and emotion and often just intensely frustrated exchanges with their colleagues, teams, investors, contributors, customers and employees.
It is a bumpy, tumultuous, sorrow-filled world, and when the federal, state or local authorities are imposing directives and extracting taxes and fees on private-sector job creators, no matter what the industry burdened or the agency issuing the decree, tempers can and do run high — because the stakes are high.
Investments are on the line. Jobs are on the line. Lives are on the line.
The contrast with the portrait Breyer painted of the court’s routine could not be more complete.
It is very reassuring on one level that the justices have operated in such a collegial fashion for so many years.
It is also somewhat unsettling to think of how removed they are from the lives of ordinary citizens, especially those confounded by and struggling to deal with a vast, powerful and growing government.