After a humongous computer meltdown — thanks to a crappy Dell Inspiron laptop — we’re limping back into service. May we draw your attention this morning to Adam Cohen’s signed editorial, which asks, “Is John Roberts Too Much of a Judicial Activist?” It begins with the case of a “hapless toad” and ends with a warning about toadying to the activism of conservative Supreme Court justices “intent on using new readings of the Consitution to take away rights.” They are far “more dangerous” than the liberal justices who allegedly create rights “like the right to privacy,” Cohen writes.
And by the way, does this sound like anything you’ve heard of lately?
He lived either in the darkness of the hood, or in the white light of the cells. There was no night or day, and to make it even more weird they kept the noises going most of the time.
They were working him on the production-line principle, he explained: no sleep, relays of questions, a lot of disorientation, a lot of muscle, till the interrogation became to him a slow race between going a bit dotty, as he called it, and breaking completely.
The passage comes from John le Carré’s 1974 novel “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.” It’s Jim Prideaux describing his interrogation by Moscow Centre’s expert goons to George Smiley.
We’re partial to le Carré, above, who’s getting some play these days because of the new movie based on his 2000 novel “The Constant Gardener.” Not having seen the movie — it opens Wednesday, directed by Fernando (“City of God”) Meirelles — we can’t say whether it’s any good. But the novel won’t let you down, even though “Tinker, Tailor …,” which is key to the Smiley back story, outranks it in the le Carré canon.
— Tireless Staff of Thousands