In the 20th century, it has become commonplace for courts to listen to or read vast quantities of evidence, much of it irrelevant by almost any standard, before making rulings. Judges are invited to make their decisions on the basis of tendentious materials rather than attending to law and precedent. Virtually overwhelmed by factual details, they are invited to rule on the basis of their sympathies.
Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Vol. 4: The Growth of America 1878-1928, pg.101