John Oliver Has The Solution To The Supreme Court's Refusal To Videotape Supreme Court Hearings: Dogs

from the not-cats? dept

For many years, we’ve discussed the pure ridiculousness of the Supreme court’s adamant refusal to allow cameras in the courtroom, along with the Justices’ questionable justifications of the ban. Now it appears that John Oliver has taken up the issue as well, but unlike those just whining about it, Oliver (thanks to the resources of HBO) has a possible “solution.” Dogs.

Oliver starts out mocking Justice Antonin Scalia’s reason for barring cameras: that people would just see 15- or 30-second clips from the arguments, taking things out of context. Of course, as Oliver points out, that makes absolutely no sense, since the Supreme Court already releases audio of the hearings, and thus we already do hear the same clips — it’s just that they’re generally paired with artistic renderings of the Justices instead of the actual video.

His solution — using “an almost immoral amount of resources” — is to present video representations of the entire Supreme Court… using dogs (and a couple of birds in supporting roles). And, Oliver claims, they’re making those videos freely available to any other news provider who would like to create complete reenactments of any court case in a way that is cute and guaranteed to draw more attention than the court renderings, or, hell, actual videos if they were ever allowed. You can see the full ten minutes of footage (and, yes, I watched it all) right here:

That video also, helpfully, links to the Supreme Court’s oral arguments audio page for people to download. And the video description notes:

Please feel free to use it, post your videos, and tag them #RealAnimalsFakePaws so we can find them.

The only disappointment is that whoever put it up, still officially left it under a “standard” license, rather than the Creative Commons license that YouTube makes available. Still, nice move by Oliver and his team.

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Comments on “John Oliver Has The Solution To The Supreme Court's Refusal To Videotape Supreme Court Hearings: Dogs”

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14 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

overbearing laughtrack

I wish John Oliver would use a different laughtrack, or at least a different laughtrack operator, as the current guy the show uses has a very heavy hand. Maybe it’s supposed to be reminiscent of the 1970s era British TV comedies, with their overbearing laughtracks, but it would be most appreciated if there was some way to turn the volume down, or off.

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