Meet the Supremes

From The New York Times:

Nine_2 The farewell ceremony for Chief Justice William Rehnquist at the United States Supreme Court in September 2005 offers the kind of monumental tracking shot authors adore. Neatly and conveniently arrayed that day on the marble steps leading into the building, standing, by tradition, in reverse order of seniority, the justices line up. As some of Rehnquist’s former law clerks (his soon-to-be successor, John Roberts, among them) carry his casket past his former colleagues, Jeffrey Toobin follows the procession, freezing on each of the justices, then introducing them in turn.

But to anyone who watches the court, or watches those who watch it, Toobin’s descriptions afford something else, arguably even more interesting: the chance to ponder which of those justices talked to him for this book, and which did not. And talk to him some of them clearly did. Without their off-the-record whispers, there would be no “inside” story of any “secret” world to tell in “The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court.”

Of course, the myth is that the justices sit sealed on their Olympian perches, forever mum. In truth, some talk when it suits them, to toot their own horns, unburden their souls, allay their loneliness or justify something they’ve done.

More here.