In a less polarized era, Kavanaugh’s nomination would have been quickly withdrawn and likely replaced …

Actually, high probability that this would have happened if Sen. Feinstein had taken the letter, upon receipt, to the committee confidentially. Kav would have been given a face-saving way to bow out, and we would have moved on without a national spectacle where a victim who had requested confidentiality was thrown under the bus for political reasons.

The way it was played by the Dems forced the GOP’s hand.

Blasey Ford’s allegations were hardly “character assassination.”

Nobody said it was. The “character assassination” began when the Dems, through Ronan Farrow and Avenatti, started to dreg up uncredible accounts, started tooling through high school yearbooks, and debating “how drunk is drunk”, turning the Senate Judiciary Hearing into the Jerry Springer Show.

Moreover, there were far too many corroborating details, such as the fact that not just Kavanaugh but his drinking buddy at the time, Mark Judge, was also in the room. If this was simply a case of mistaken identity, as some conservatives have suggested, is it likely that she could have been mistaken about both of them?

A corroborating detail is a corroborating detail, not a thought experiment like your last 13 words.

The article you linked to to prove there were “corroborating details” is interesting, in that it both points out a “coorborating detail”, and then goes ahead and impeaches the detail. :-) Suffice to say that there is no coorborating detail that is not easily impeached by the passage of time and the undependability of our memories over time.

Republicans have argued that our criminal justice system entails a presumption of innocence and a right to due process. But, aside from the fact that Republicans really only seem to care about presumptions of innocence and due process when powerful conservative men are involved,

Well, let’s just drop the BS flag on that one and move on. If you’re going to try and claim that the party that lionizes Ted Kennedy, who should have been jailed for manslaughter, and defended Bill Clinton has moral authority over GOP, good for you.

this was not a criminal proceeding. This was a job interview for one of the most consequential appointments in our system of government.

You’re right, it’s not a criminal proceeding. But the presumption of innocence and due process are ingrained in our collective definition of “fairness”; you wouldn’t want to live in a country where it was otherwise.

And no, it’s not a “job interview”. The job interview happened when Kavanaugh was interviewed by Trump and his staff. The Senate’s role is “advise and consent”, which oddly does not sound like “go through high school yearbooks with a fine toothcomb.”

Both of which should have disqualifying.

Actually, I was surprised he didn’t throw coffee at some of those hypocrites. He had been personally and publically attacked for political reasons; this all could have happened confidentially, the way Dr. Ford requested.

The partisan attacks speak for themselves. What liberal will trust the impartiality of Kavanaugh’s legal opinions now?

Putting aside for a moment that most SCOTUS matters do not break down cleanly between “liberal” and “conservative”, the answer to the question is this:

Any liberal who, knowing that Kavanaugh did 15 years of conservative/GOP political jobs prior to confirmation on the District Court, AND who takes the time to read through the fairness of his 300-odd opinions, will trust his impartiality.

By admitting the plausibility of Blasey Ford’s claim, he could have at suggested that he was drunk and had no idea that she had perceived his actions as an assault. This could have at least allowed him to accept some responsibility for his behavior.

You’re ruling out the possibility that he (a) didn’t do it, or (b) doesn’t remember doing it. Don’t rule those out. Both are possible.

That Republicans chose not to is an indication of the fact that they, like their base voters, have come to inhabit an alternate, and ultimately quite fragile, reality. They, and the conservative movement that has placed them in power, have waged a long-term war on the very idea of objectivity and its role in politics.

Rather than hypothesize about such lofty (and quite frankly, rather crazy) possibilities, let’s use Occam’s Razor:

The GOP had more to lose electorally by not confirming him than they did by confirming him.

So they did. Had this issue been raised early and confidentially, which the Dems decided NOT to do, I believe he would have been withdrawn. But the lateness of the release of the letter, which I believe was politically timed to create a “deadline” which would benefit the Democrats electorally if ignored by the GOP, backfired on them, because the GOP had no choice but to move forward or possibly lose the nomination altogether. (If the Dems took the Senate, then they could just Merrick Garland all nominees for two years. Fortunately, this does not appear to be working out. )

The result, demonstrated in microcosm during the Kavanaugh hearings, has been utterly corrosive of our politics, rendering our institutions impotent to address our most pressing problems, and our citizens increasingly desperate for a messianic, and hence antidemocratic, leader.

Hmmmmm. So, the sky is now falling?

Hence the paradox: that political action must be undertaken to enact limits on its own scope and capacity to act. I t is this paradox that has attracted so many conservatives to her ideas,

The important point here is that to a conservative, it’s the Constitution of the United States which illustrates that “political action” — taken at a rare moment in the history of any nation where all its political figures were on the same page, rarely (if ever) to happen again — which is the ultimate limiter on the scope and capacity of government.

Hence, why conservatives want (I hate these terms, but pick the one you hate least) “strict constructionist, originalist, constitutionalist” justices on the Courts; because if a Judge is not going to ENFORCE the Constitution, then government has no limits on its power.

It is also an idea that has been all but abandoned by the contemporary right-wing political movement, excepting a few, increasingly rare, old-guard #nevertrumpers.

The modern political Right, especially since the election of Trump, has abandoned the idea that there should be any limit on their power and have progressively sought to politicize every institution in American society. In that sense, the contemporary conservative movement is far closer in its inclinations to totalitarians than to its ostensible intellectual forebears.

Cock and Bull Nonsense. The neverTrumpers favor, almost without exception, support the John McCain “Pax Americana”, where world organization is dependent on the extension of American power, both economic and military, abroad. That is decidedly NOT a right-leaning governance philosophy, which has *always* been to take care of the Homeland first.

Those of us conservatives who are *not* rabid pro-Trumpers (that’s most of us) are pragmatists. We see Trump as both an asshole and an organizational disaster, but we like the majority of his policy priorities. So, to us, he’s a Chinese Buffet: we each what we like, leave the rest, and hold strongly to Arendt’s thought as it manifests through Constitutionalist justices, and politicians (when we can find them).

On full display was the entire scope of their long-term attempt to seize control of every objective structure of our society that might pose an obstacle to it cultural and political dominance.

One suspects that if the tables were turned, and Kavanaugh was a left wing judge nominated by a left wing president and the minority party were the Republicans, you’d be applauding that “seize of power.”

Here was the decades-old quest to pack the U.S. court system, especially the Supreme Court, with the most conservative jurists available.

Yes. God help us if our Justices simply apply the Constitution as it is written. Who could possibly live with that. :-)

For Arendt, the greatest danger to democracy arose when citizens could no longer distinguish between truth and opinion.

She’s wrong. The greatest danger is when the citizens no longer care what is truth and what is opinion.

That similar circumstances prevail in our current era should fill us with fear for the future of our democracy. It should also bring into stark relief just how reckless and dangerous the modern Republican party, and the radical conservative movement that animates it, has become.

(Watches the sky fall again. Wonders how anyone can be so blind as to not see that both parties try to do the same thing. Shakes her head, decides to fix herself a cup of tea.)

The Republican base, along with its leadership, has become so paranoid and insecure that they could not even consider the consequences of placing a man on the Supreme Court whose credibility and judicial impartiality had been compromised before the entire world.

This assumes that your opinion on these matters is shared by all. It isn’t. However, it is indeed ironic that you levy the accusation whilst at the the same time you were attacking the credibility of the FBI, because they weren’t giving you the answers you wanted.

They were willing to follow through on this confirmation because they no longer see the value of objective truth and consensus interpretations of the Constitution.

Actually, it’s because we value both that we support the strict constructionist Justices.

The Left, of course, has their own problems, and is certainly not immune to politicizing the nonpolitical and objective. But we should be under no delusions about which side is far more dangerous.

I agree. (I normally avoid right-leaning sources when I cite. I was unable to do so in some cases here, because the MSM sources are simply not reporting on the incivility comments of the last week or so. Doesn’t fit the narrative, of course.)

At some point, America will have to reckon with the pathological reality Republican leaders have abetted and that Fox News has helped create. Until we do, the conservative movement will continue its long march toward totalitarianism.

Totalitarism regulates the economy or socializes it, and taxes people highly to fund its priorities, which also limits the choices the citizens can make.

Which party is in favor of regulation, socialization, and high taxes?


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