BN.com Gift Guide

Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court [NOOK Book]

Overview

From renowned political theorist James MacGregor Burns, an incisive critique of the overreaching power of an ideological Supreme Court

For decades, Pulitzer Prize-winner James MacGregor Burns has been one of the great masters of the study of power and leadership in America. In Packing the Court, he turns his eye to the U.S. Supreme Court, an institution that he believes has become more powerful, and more partisan, than the founding fathers ...
See more details below
Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$12.99
BN.com price

Overview

From renowned political theorist James MacGregor Burns, an incisive critique of the overreaching power of an ideological Supreme Court

For decades, Pulitzer Prize-winner James MacGregor Burns has been one of the great masters of the study of power and leadership in America. In Packing the Court, he turns his eye to the U.S. Supreme Court, an institution that he believes has become more powerful, and more partisan, than the founding fathers ever intended. In a compelling and provocative narrative, Burns reveals how the Supreme Court has served as a reactionary force in American politics at critical moments throughout the nation's history, and concludes with a bold proposal to rein in the court's power.


Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Michiko Kakutani
Some of Mr. Burns’s proposals are bound to be controversial: for instance, he suggests near the end of the book that a president could challenge judicial authority by announcing "flatly that he or she would not accept the Supreme Court’s verdicts because the power of judicial emasculation of legislation was not - and never had been - in the Constitution." Happily for the reader, the bulk of this volume is less didactic, charting the fallout that "the passions of the day," in Justice Felix Frankfurter’s words, have had on its rulings, while analyzing the role that chance, timing and the mysteries of human personality have played in shaping the institution and its decisions.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
Pulitzer Prize–winning author Burns's latest is a jeremiad against the influence and unelected power of the Supreme Court. Burns ably guides reader through a brief history of the court, concentrating on its instances of overreaching the bounds of its authority, condemning the unconstitutionality of judicial review and closing with a series of suggestions for reform that include more rigorous presidential oversight of Supreme Court rulings. Norman Dietz is as polished and assured as ever; he reads ably and clearly, eliding Burns's exasperation and laying out the facts with a minimum of inflection and understated authority. A Penguin Press hardcover (Reviews, Apr. 27). (Aug.)
Kirkus Reviews
A Pulitzer Prize-winning historian claims that John Marshall got it spectacularly wrong: "It is emphatically the province and duty of the American people, not of the nine justices of the United States Supreme Court, to say what the Constitution is."The Supreme Court's power and authority date from 1803's Marbury v. Madison, which established it as the final arbiter of any conflict between the law and the Constitution. Burns (Leadership Scholar/Univ. of Maryland; Running Alone: Presidential Leadership from JFK to Bush II-Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It, 2006, etc.) departs from conventional wisdom and argues that Marbury's enshrinement of the judiciary's supremacy was actually an extra-Constitutional power grab by Chief Justice Marshall. Marbury immunized the court from checks and balances, made it unaccountable within our democracy and ensured deliberate efforts by the party in power to "pack" the court with its own partisans. In graceful prose, Burns takes us on a quick historical tour of many famous and infamous decisions, demonstrating how the court, frequently imagined as the protector of the weak and powerless, has more often been the friend of the powerful and a "a choke point for progressive reforms," contemptuous of popular legislation. He comments on previous, unavailing efforts to curb the Court's power-drives for impeachment, tinkering with the court's numbers, popular votes on recall of decisions or of the Justices themselves, or fiddling with the rules, such as requiring a supermajority to strike down federal legislation. Astonishingly, Burns then proposes that President Obama, in an act of transformational leadership, announce his refusal to accept Supreme Courtverdicts overruling vital legislation because the Constitution does not mention this power. Supporters of judicial supremacy, writes the author, should then be invited to amend the Constitution to explicitly provide for a power the court has never truly possessed. The author concedes the risk of this "open defiance of constitutional customs and the myths and mysteries that have long enshrouded the court . . . There might even be demands for impeachment." No kidding. Tendentious history in service of a reform bound to go nowhere. Author events in New York and Washington, D.C.
From the Publisher
"[Dietz's] tone and pacing make it easy to follow the constitutional arguments, and he pauses at crucial intervals to allow listeners to consider Burns's ideas." —-AudioFile
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101081907
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 6/25/2009
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 1,140,279
  • File size: 796 KB

Meet the Author

James MacGregor Burns is the Woodrow Wilson Professor of Government Emeritus at Williams College and Distinguished Leadership Scholar at the James MacGregor Burns Academy of Leadership at the University of Maryland. He is the author of more than two dozen books, including Roosevelt: Soldier of Freedom, which won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, and Leadership, which is considered a seminal work in the field of leadership studies.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 1
( 1 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2012

    Horrible

    Save you time and money and don't bother with this scatter-brained snooze fest. I love history and politics but i had 80 year half dead professors that were more interesting than this book

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)