"It goes without saying that judges must be neutral arbitrators in disputes that come before them... They can have no personal agenda, and they must be independent."
That's the biggest fallacy ever. Everyone has an agenda. There is no such thing as a "neutral abritrator." There are only agendas.
Oh, by all means people call themselves "neutral." Like journalists, or reporters call themselves "neutral." Then they try to sell newspapers by jazzing up stories. Wanting to sell newspapers may just be an "agenda" wouldn't ya know? Neutrality, or at least the concept they are describing, doesn't exist either. A judge has opinions just like anyone else. It's just that people fool themselves into believing that their "opinions" don't have an affect on how they do their job.
"Critics of the new process have warned that it runs the risk of politicizing the country's highest court."
Would appointing these characters as a judge be considered "politicizing?":
....Cotler's executive assistant and policy adviser, Cotler's former chief of staff, the former legal counsel to the Ontario Liberal Party, the wife of a close Cotler friend, a senior Alberta Liberal fund-raiser and close friend of Alberta Liberal cabinet minister Anne McLellan, the former co-chair of the 2004 Alberta federal Liberal campaign, an unsuccessful Liberal candidate in the 1997 and 2000 Alberta elections, a twice-defeated federal Liberal candidate in Alberta, and a former Liberal minister of finance in New Brunswick.(link)
Because all were Supreme Court Nominees.
No, it couldn't be. Liberal appointments to the Supreme Court? Believe it. These are the "neutral arbritators" they talk about that don't have an "agenda."
"He cannot tell you how he would decide a hypothetical case," he said. "He might eventually be faced with that case.
"For the same reason, he cannot tell what you his views are on controversial issues, such as abortion, same-sex marriage or secession."
I expect that rule to change, and soon. Oh, it won't be done officially. But as these hearings become tradition in the Dominion, I bet some politicians will decide to dance on the lines and not-quite-so-ask-but-quasy-ask those questions.
As an alternative, the Canadian Bar Association has recommended that new Supreme Court judges be questioned by a leading journalist in a televised interview conducted under the CBA's supervision.
"There is no need to create an appearance that judges are beholden to those members of the very government they will undoubtedly be required to judge," CBA president Brian Tabor said.
"There is a better, safer approach to introduce a Supreme Court nominee to Canadians without creating doubt as to the independence and impartiality of our judges."(link)
I think a touch of doubt just might already exist... But far from me to disagree with the big Lawyer dude, with the suing and the "hey defamation lawsuit" thing...
What a flap-crappy way of selecting a judge - but at least it's an improvement to what we're used to in the True North Strong and Free.