Bench Memos

NRO’s home for judicial news and analysis.

It’s All a Matter of How You Say It


Our redoubtable editor was on a language binge yesterday First, Kathryn offers readers this Washington Post headline: “Roberts Unlikely to Face Big Fight”. For those confounded by Post-speak, Kathryn offers “Translation: Nothin’s Sticking”. Next she provides a snippet from a 1984 Roberts memo (taken, I think again, from the Post ) about Michael Jackson. Roberts is quoted there as writing, “I recognize that I am something of a vox clamans in terris in this area. But “enough is enough”, he concluded.

Well, here finally is something that will stick . (And NRO scoops the Post!) John the Baptist’s was not a vox clamans in terris , but a vox clamantis in deserto, “the voice of one crying in the wilderness”. Check the Vulgate of Matt 3:3, Mark1:3, Luke 3:4, John 1:23, and, of course, the original at Isaiah 40:3.

If the hearings go badly, perhaps Judge Roberts will find alternative
employment at Georgetown.


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