Lawprof Nelson Lund has just spoken, condemning the "cult of celebrity judges." Is there a cult of celebrity judges? If so, is it a bad thing? Anyway, Lund has a bunch of proposals designed to destroy the cult. Make the job of being a Supreme Court Justice more onerous and less nourishing of narcissism, and maybe the Justices will become dourly dutiful little scribes.
One proposal is to end the practice of signing opinions. Do you think if the Justices couldn't stamp their names on the opinions, their behavior would change? And would unsigned opinions even hide who the author really was?
Prof. Tushnet says:
"You're going to have to figure out how to keep Justice Ginsburg from using the word 'pathbreaking,' and you're going to have to keep Justice Scalia... well, from being Justice Scalia."Ha ha. It would give us lawprofs a new game to play, figuring out the distinctive marks of the different judges. For a while, at least. Over time, I think, we'd stop caring who was who. The Court would fade into a black box from which opinions emerged, and we'd judge the opinions on their merit, without bothering to imagine what's going on in the minds of particular judges. Would that make law more law-like, or would it just hide things that we ought to want to know?