Today is your 55th birthday, and you have so many reasons to celebrate. Your catbird seat as the Chief Justice on the Supreme Court of the most powerful country in the world is perhaps the greatest gift anyone could ever receive. John, with this lifetime appointment, you are invincible.
But, as it turns out, you are the gift that keeps on giving. Most folks don’t know much about you, like where you were in 2000. Just a decade ago, during the historic recount, you were in Tallahassee, Florida, a relatively unknown lawyer, advising then Gov. Jeb Bush on how to ensure he’d make good on his promise to deliver the gift of Florida’s electoral votes to his brother, George.
Whatever your behind the scenes machinations were, you must have been quite an asset to your future conservative colleagues on the Supreme Court. You were a key player in that bloodless coup when our highest court placed George the Second in the White House by stopping the vote recount.
And for this gift you were handsomely rewarded. All you had to do was smile and wait. From one kingmaker to another, George II appointed you to position of Chief Justice in 2005 as two mega hurricanes savaged America’s Gulf Coast.
Last week in the midst of another deadly natural disaster in Haiti, your majority opinion that gave Corporations equal footing with American citizens and opened the door for our country to be bought and sold to the robber barons with the deepest pockets is really a gift that will keep on giving forever. With this gift, you have removed the final obstacle for your corporate overlords to gain full control of our democratic process.
On your birthday, John, you must be feeling very satisfied. Not so for the rest of us. You are one gift that America should return–if only it were possible.