November 6, 2013

Regarding the Nov. 5 news article “Worker-rights case asks court to define ‘clothes’ ”:

Justice Antonin Scalia’s flippant remark during oral argument in Sandifer v. U.S. Steel, gratuitously disparaging government agencies and their professional employees, was uncalled for and simply wrong. When Justice Elena Kagan wondered why a government agency had never addressed the opaquemeaning of a phrase in the Fair Labor Standards Act, Justice Scalia remarked, “Too complicated is why.”

Did Justice Scalia actually read the brief filed by the solicitor general and signed by the solicitor of labor? If so, he should have known that government agencies, including the Labor Department, have been wrestling, in detail and at length, since World War II with the question before the court.

David A. Drachsler, Alexandria