Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Attainder For Beginners

by James Taranto - March 23rd, 2009 - Wall Street Journal

The House's vote last week to impose a confiscatory tax on bonuses earned by employees at bailed-out financial institutions led many readers to write us arguing that, or asking if, the legislation is an unconstitutional bill of attainder--a measure imposing punishment through legislation without a trial.

The short answer is probably not, and the reason is that the bill would confiscate bonuses from many employees who are not accused of any wrongdoing or mismanagement.

What an amazing concept. If a law punishes a few innocents in addition to the so-called "guilty" because congress knowingly tries to hide that it is a bill of attainder aimed at individuals (who they whipped up mob anger towards) then it is okay and we can pretend it is not truly aimed at the real targets. Is there any better definition of court corruption than this?


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