Connected Fish in a Mediocre Pond


Channelling her inner Jim Murray, Dallas resident Virginia Postrel takes a withering swipe at her adopted hometown:

Harriet Miers has spent her life in Dallas, and done extremely well in its connections-oriented legal culture–so well that one of her Dallas friends has now nominated her to the Supreme Court. That gives me the creeps. If she had a record as a constitutional thinker, I might feel differently. But then, if she had a record as a constitutional thinker, she wouldn't have fit in in Dallas.

Ouch! Meanwhile, a lefty bankruptcy lawyer working in the great city Postrel left behind, rises to the defense of Miers' qualifications:

[S]he has accomplished a great deal in her legal career, a career not limited to running the Texas State Lottery, as Ann of a Thousand Lays so condescendingly mentions. She broke the barrier against her sex at a major law firm in Texas, ran the Bar Association in Dallas, then later in the whole state of Texas, and served on the Dallas City Council, before becoming White House Counsel. It may not be unfair to label her a "crony" of the President, but Byron White was no less a "crony" of JFK when he got tabbed, and his credentials were every bit as similar as Miers'. If Bush's other crony appointments were akin to Harriet Miers, the issue probably wouldn't come up, just as it didn't with President Kennedy. Even if I choose to oppose her nomination, her accomplishments entitle her to my respect.