Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Luttig leaves the bench

I don't quite know how I feel about this. Michael Luttig resigned from the federal bench to take a job at Boeing. This strikes me as particularly egregious.
At Chicago-based Boeing, Luttig, 51, who lives in Vienna, will face a number of legal issues. Boeing is trying to settle Justice Department investigations into the illegal hiring of an Air Force official and its use of a rival's proprietary documents to win a rocket launch contract. The hiring probe resulted in guilty pleas in 2004 by Boeing's former chief financial officer, Michael M. Sears, and Darleen A. Druyun, a former Air Force procurement official who became vice president in charge of Boeing's missile defense systems.
The dirty little secret of the law is it's as much about who you know as it is about what you argue and there's something about this trade up (or would that be down) to the defense contractor that smells unethical. It's certainly so rare an occurrence that there's unlikely to be a law of ethics to cover it. It stinks of a payoff.

On the other hand, one can't fail to remember Luttig's strongly worded decision in the Padilla case. He clearly had reached his limit on executive power so they may have forced him out. I'd like to think he left as a kind of personal rebuke to the White House. I suspect it's more likely he thought the money was worth the trade off on the lifetime appointment since it's apparent he'll never be on the short list of SCOTUS again. I certainly hope he wasn't forced out or worse bought off. That would only feed my theory on the approaching martial law.
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Anonymous Half Sigma said...

Wouldn't you quit yoru job if someone offered you a million dollar salary to work somewhere else?

I know I would!!!! Does that make me such a bad person?

12:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Libby said...

Well it depends on what you were expected to do for the money. It only makes one a bad person if money is allowed to trump ethics.

Accepting a grand salary for doing good work certainly doesn't make anyone a bad person.

3:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Half Sigma said...

For a million dollars a year I'd pretend to be a liberal.

11:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Libby said...

LOL! You might forgiven for the ethical lapse if you did it really well....

4:54:00 PM  

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