Over the past year, the Supreme Court Public Information Office "Clipped Approximately 10,000 News Articles Related to the Court and the Justices, Roughly Half of Them Tweets"

I am horrified to think there are 5,000 tweets worth clipping for the Justices.

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At the end of this term, Kathleen Arberg will retire as the Supreme Court's Public Information Officer. She has been in that position for nearly four decades. Marcia Coyle interviewed Arberg for the Supreme Court Insider newsletter. It is a fun piece. Arberg offers some fascinating insights into how the PIO has evolved over the decades. However, there was one disquieting tidbit:

In the past year, we've clipped approximately 10,000 news articles related to the court and the justices, roughly half of them tweets, just one indication of the growth in variety and breadth of coverage.

I am horrified to think there are 5,000 tweets worth clipping for the Justices. Most of Twitter is an absolute cesspool of hot takes and visceral reactions. These fleeting ephemera should be forgotten as soon as they are released–not clipped for Supreme Court Justices.

But on a deeper level, I am troubled by the notion that the Justices need tweets and articles about them clipped. The media is overly hostile to conservative jurisprudence. Advocates posing as journalists routinely try to shame the Court to eschew conservative results. The Justices should be impervious to this pressure. But no. Many of the Justices are desirous of public approval, and feed on mainstream media accolades. And the PIO proactively feeds this habit. The so-called Greenhouse Effect is exacerbated within the Court.

If this post is ultimately clipped by PIO, I hope every Justice deletes it. What I say, and what others say, should not matter to how justice is dispensed.

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  1. The media is overly hostile to conservative jurisprudence.

    Cry some more Blackman. The right-wing persecution complex is strong with the snowflakes.

    1. The biggest problem is not Tweets or harassment by fake journalists. It is where they live, Washington DC, the Mecca of big government rent seeking. The Court should be moved to a jurisdiction where the culture is one of small government. People imitate, and cannot resist adapting to local culture. This effect explains the big government conversions of the most conservative Justices appointed, and their subsequent betrayal of our nation.

    2. Yet Tom from Chiraq doesn’t address the point in any way. How typical.

      1. You have to have a real point before it can be addressed.

        1. Real point:

          The media is overly hostile to conservative jurisprudence. Advocates posing as journalists routinely try to shame the Court to eschew conservative results. The Justices should be impervious to this pressure.

          Now address it.

          1. Now address it.

            I did address it…but let me spell it out for you :
            His “point” is bullshit and I accusing him (and most conservative legal thinkers) of having a persecution complex. They are delicate snowflakes who treat any criticism of their tedious and outcome-based jurisprudence as “bias”.

            And it’s nothing more than a continuation of the oft-repeated fallacy of the “liberal media” that is always “against conservatives”.

            I gave his point the exact amount of respect it deserves. It’s not based on reality and he hasn’t offered anything close to any sort of proof.

            The professor apparently thinks his point is so self-evident that it doesn’t require any sort of proof to back up his cry-baby assertion.

            It’s a nice scam…claim bias anytime anyone criticizes you regardless of how shitty of an actor your…that’s been the GOP playbook for the last 30 years.

            1. Right.

              It’s BS.

              And if you are so delicate that a critical editorial in the Washington Post intimidates you into changing your view of a court case maybe you shouldn’t have accepted that appointment.

              The whole “media intimidation” business is nonsense. And it’s based on the idea that no liberal outcome can possibly be reached honestly and in good faith, just like it was impossible for Trump to lose an honest election.

    3. Victimization is the raison d’etre of modern conservatism of course, but there’s also the aspect of ‘working the ref’ going on.

      1. Hideous ugliness is the raison d’etre of the modern Democrat, of course, but there is also the aspect of hating our country for its maltreatment of the really ugly.

        1. Yeah, all those hotties in rural Trump land (as opposed to the Blue cities) demonstrate this coke-addled cockatoo’s comments’ correctness on this!

    4. ” The right-wing persecution complex is strong with the snowflakes.”

      In this country, the poor conservative man just can’t get his fair advantage from inherited money any more, at least not like they used to. And those biased media outlets keep pointing out hypocrisy, which is UNFAIR TO CONSERVATIVES. They prefer to be judged by what they say rather than by what they do.

      1. Nobody is risking life to get to this country for the non-white male economy.

        1. Nobody is risking life to get to this country for the non-white male economy.

          That’s true…they are all coming for the freebies and the handouts and the welfare or something….at least that’s what the nativists tell me.

          1. Tom, a pool deck was being repaved. It required cutting large tiles with complex curves to fit exactly. That is a highly skilled occupation, probably with great pay. No one spoke English. A white guy paid them for that work.

            1. Crazy Cockatoo Cuckoo for Coco Puffs.

              Behar is clearly the craziest commenter here and also one of the biggest Trump fans. Draw your own conclusions.

  2. What is meant here by “clipped”?

    1. Archaic 20th Century term involving using scissors to clip articles out of physical newspapers. Companies used to subscribe to “clipping services” that would clip articles about the company.

    2. Always interesting how we keep words like “clipped” for news articles and “phone” even though technology changes.

      1. In computer programs the function is generally called “cut” and is often accompanied by an icon of a pair of scissors.

      2. “Always interesting how we keep words like “clipped” for news articles and “phone” even though technology changes.”

        Yes, we still “dial” our phones that don’t have any dials on them. There’s still a Grammy category for “record of the year” which can be won by an iTunes download, and any number of other verbal fossils still exist.

  3. In contrast to Blackman’s implication, I very much doubt the Justices read the tweets and clippings.

    I can just imagine Clarence Thomas thinking, “Gee, these tweets really make me think I should reconsider the ACA case.” Yeah.

    I don’t know why they do this, but I suppose these records sometimes help PIO respond to questions that come up, or maybe they consider that there is historical value in creating an archive of this material.

    Nothing very troubling here at all, IMO.

    1. I am skeptical that the justices read them either. PIO is necessary. Maybe. But I highly doubt anyone would confess after 40 years, “Yeah we do it, but the justices ignore us.”

    2. Justice Thomas is Yale indoctrinated. He and his prominent wife life in DC. He is acculturated to the idea that government knows best how people should live. I lived there a short time. I started to look down on the rest of the country. The people there were the biggest dicks in the country. Yet they think they are better than the rest of the country. They contribute nothing, are totally worthless, and highly toxic. This superior feeling is a delusion.

      1. A powerful argument for Derrida.

        1. The insanity of the Democrat with Trump Derangement Syndrome made his point.

          1. Crazy Cockatoo Clicks search for ‘Derrida.’

      2. ” I lived there a short time. I started to look down on the rest of the country. The people there were the biggest dicks in the country.”

        The people where you live now have the smallest dicks in the country.

        1. You dragged down the average, see. Sigh. Jokes aren’t as funny if you have to explain them.

  4. Departmental Axiom #1 is to justify the budget. I would expect a Department Head to say “Look how much work we do, we need more people.”

    I have no doubt the PIO clips 10,000 articles including 5000 Tweets. Look how much work we do.

    My company sends around articles about itself all the time. It’s an inherently narcissistic function.

    Do I read them? Heck no. Too much work to do.

    There is no link to the underlying article, but my feeling is that this is nothing more than a Department head bragging. I mean, what do you expect the retiring head of the PIO to say… Twittter is a cesspool we just sit around all day polishing seats with our ass?

  5. The first 3 main comments to this post are ironic. The first one has the gall to call Blackman a snowflake, but all 3 are knee-jerk reactions to a truth those commenters don’t want to see. Who are the snowflakes around here?

    1. Correction. The first comment, not the first 3.

      1. Somebody just counted up to 3, and figured out his own post was on of the three.

    2. An emotional reaction is “truth” to you? How odd.

      1. No, it isn’t, and if you re-read my comment, maybe you’ll get it. Hint: it’s ChicagoTom’s reaction that was emotional, and no, it’s not a truth.

        1. No, it isn’t, and if you re-read my comment, maybe you’ll get it. Hint: it’s ChicagoTom’s reaction that was emotional, and no, it’s not a truth.

          YOU don;t seem to get it.

          BLackman’s comment the the media is hostile to conservative legal “thinkers” was the emotional comment. It wasn’t a “truth” — it’s actually far from it.

          Unless it’s your position that the only the left can be snowflakes when they complain about being persecuted by “the man/the system” etc, my comment isn’t emotional at all. It’s a perfectly logical and reasonable conclusion based on his blog posts.

          Blackman is a snowflake grievance peddler with a persecution complex. Don’t believe me? Read his writings. That;s all he writes about…how everyone is unfair to conservatives.
          Maybe he should consider finding a new pony with a new trick?

    3. Who are the snowflakes around here?

      The conservatives who keep pretending that the system is against them without providing any sort of evidence. Maybe they should put on some big boy pants and stop acting like babies and deal with criticism like the rest of the world.

      Blackman’s statement isn’t “the truth” — its his opinion — and he asserts it without any proof. What’s “galling” is seeing morons act like he’s some sort of truth-teller when all he is doing is acting as a grievance peddler and perpetual victim.

      Blackman (and the rest of the conservatives who continuously whine about the media being mean to them) is a snowflake.

      Look at his posting history….it’s nothing but grievances. That’s his whole schtick. Whining about liberals being mean or unfair or some other BS.

      While other authors write about the law…Blackman spends his time finding new grievances or perceived slights to push forward the false narrative that conservatives are being treated poorly or targeted or unfairly punished or whatever. (See Exhibit A where a conservative legal society does something that everyone agrees was bad — but Blackman’s take is essentially “yeah but liberals did something bad why aren’t you talking about that?!?!?!?!”)

  6. I wonder how many of the “clipped” tweets are sent to Court Security.

    My guess is that the number is significant.

    1. So stop writing that kind of tweets, you twit.

      1. Pithy. Pointless, but pithy.

  7. The life experience of justices is somewhat narrow on average, and their attitudes are subject to coastal bubbles, but I’m hopeful that they are mature enough to value media coverage as it merits.

    1. Is it regrettable, in your judgment, that they are likely below average in exposure to faith healers, Klan events, rattlesnake-juggling exhibitions, WWE galas, QAnon websites, revival meetings, militia exercises, birther blogs, gay-bashing rallies, televangelism, Confederate monument celebrations, and gun bashes?

  8. “If this post is ultimately clipped by PIO, I hope every Justice deletes it. What I say, and what others say, should not matter to how justice is dispensed.”

    I assure you, you have nothing to worry about there.

  9. “I am horrified to think there are 5,000 tweets worth clipping for the Justices. ”

    Assuming, arguendo, that there ARE 5000 tweets worth clipping for the Justices. I would counter that the correct number is closer to 0. That, in fact, it IS 0.

  10. Most of Twitter is an absolute cesspool of hot takes and visceral reactions.

    Yes, we wouldn’t want to expose the Justices to those, would we?

    1. No, we wouldn’t. Lest the justices react to those as though they’re the general consensus.

    2. Because public opinion is SO important in judicial decision-making.

  11. “The media is overly hostile to conservative jurisprudence.”

    Downscale academic discovers that educated, reasoning professionals residing in modern, successful communities are disinclined to share his taste for stale superstition, intolerance, and insularity . . .

    1. Downscale academic discovers that educated, reasoning professionals residing in modern, successful communities are disinclined to share his taste for stale superstition, intolerance, and insularity . . .

      Exactly. In perpetual persecution culture that is American conservatism, this is what is called as “hostility”.

      1. Reality is hostile to conservative orthodoxy, and has been for a long time.

  12. Still unclear on what is meant by “clipped” here, or for what purpose. Are these items (videos, web articles, etc.) that are being archived in a library just for the sake of being archived? Sent around to the Justices? Used in research for decisions? Who decides what is clipped?

    1. Dr Ed explained it above.

      Before computers , an employee would literally cut out with scissors articles in a newsaper or magazine about the official or company or on some issue. Then she would assemble the articles by the day or week by a paperclip or staple or pasted to paper. Once copiers came around, then they would be usually copied. The “clipped” articles would be distributed to whomever.

      Now, the articles or tweets are copied digitally and either sent by e-mail or physically on paper.

      The employee decides what is clipped, usually based on some established criteria.

      1. Yes.

        There used, in fact, to be “clipping services” that you could pay to clip and provide you with items of interest to you.

    2. “Still unclear on what is meant by “clipped” here, or for what purpose.”

      Clipping is when you block a player from the other team, from behind, below the knees. It’s a 15-yard penalty.

  13. Press office does what press offices do. Dog bites man. Do the Justices read or care about the clippings? Not if they’re like most high-level officials in an organization with a press office. And if they do, and it affects their decision-making — for which we have not a shred of evidence — the fault is theirs, not the press office’s.

  14. Josh Blackman is using up pixels again. Is it wise to let this continue?

  15. Hopefully for your sake, they do not read your articles here.

  16. The only reason people in DC read feedback is to count people on which side of an issue, as a reflection of the electorate, and their chance of re-election. Justices do not run for election. So they do not count opinions. They do ask for budgets, begging each year, like little shy mice. They should be cut off, including their security details. Their work is worthless garbage. No more money need be wasted on these garbage people.

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