Holy straw man, Chief Justice Roberts! No, AI is not the biggest threat to SCOTUS

Holy straw man, Chief Justice Roberts! No, AI is not the biggest threat to SCOTUS

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts issued his traditional end-of-year report on the state of the courts late last month, or as Elie Mystal at The Nation deems it, his annual “long-winded holiday card where Roberts tells a hokey story while wearing his latest ugly sweater.” If anything, Mystal undersells just how ridiculous this report is.

Start with this premise from Roberts: “Every year, I use the Year-End Report to speak to a major issue relevant to the whole federal court system. As 2023 draws to a close with breathless predictions about the future of Artificial Intelligence, some may wonder whether judges are about to become obsolete.”

Yes, because after a year of revelations exposing Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito as wholly owned subsidiaries of Leonard Leo’s vast, right-wing, dark-money network, what the American people really want to know is if AI is going to replace judges. Someone spent too much time watching bad sci-fi over the long holiday, it seems.

Roberts also spent some of that time—and a few pages of this report—researching the history of technology at the Supreme Court, from quills to personal computers (or, just as likely, made one of his clerks do it). That includes a foray into the development of the typewriter. No, really.

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