MENU

Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

3 Questions To Ask Yourself While Watching the Kavanaugh/Ford Hearings Today

It's a given that many senators are acting in bad faith. But what about the rest of us?

NewscomNewscomThe Senate Judiciary Committee will convene today to hear from Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and research psychologist Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who has accused him of sexual assault when both were in high school in the early 1980s (her opening statement is printed here in full). Over the past two weeks, all manner of charges have been lobbed at Kavanaugh, including suggestions that he not only was a drunken slob in high school and college but participated in and helped to organize gang rapes during his years at Georgetown Preparatory School. He has admitted to drinking heavily but flatly denied all accusations of sexual impropriety.

It was clear going into the confirmation process that no Democratic senators would vote for Kavanaugh, who is widely seen as being staunchly anti-abortion and almost certainly in favor of limiting its practices through added restrictions if not an actual overturning of legal precedent granting women a right to terminate pregnancies in their early stages. Only three Democratic senators voted to confirm Neil Gorsuch (Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota), presumably out of political concerns, not ideological sympathy with him. And it was similarly clear that all Republicans would vote in favor of Kavanaugh, especially if he assuaged fears among one or two senators (especially Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska) that he wouldn't challenge the core ruling in Roe v. Wade and subsequent decisions guaranteeing a right to an abortion. From a libertarian point of view, it's disturbing that Kavanaugh's bad positions on the Fourth Amendment and related issues didn't rise to a higher level of scrutiny.

All of that is politicized enough, but the Kavanaugh confirmation has fused with a number of other potent cultural currents, especially widespread partisan hatred for Donald Trump, the upcoming midterm elections, and the #MeToo movement.

We know where political partisans stand, but what about the rest of us who do not identify primarily in partisan terms? The latest Gallup poll on party identification finds just 26 percent of us identifying as Republican and 27 percent as Democratic. Forty-four percent call ourselves independent, a near-record high. Here are three questions political independents should be asking ourselves before today's Senate proceedings get underway:

  1. Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh? Some of the accusations are credible on their face, though there has been little in the way of concrete corroboration. Kavanaugh has flatly denied everything and said that even though he drank heavily at times, he never blacked out. If old letters from him confessing guilt and the like emerged, that would undermine his protestations of innocence in a definitive way. The last-minute nature of the gang-rape accusations from Julie Swetnick and her representation by publicity-hungry lawyer Michael Avenatti—whose language is oddly imprecise when actually saying Kavanaugh did this or that—raises doubts. At this point, at least two men have supposedly emerged claiming that they were the men who attempted to rape Ford, but how can anyone really verify their accounts? This battle has very much emerged as a marker for forces that overwhelm the specific individuals at the center of the drama. Even stories about the lurid atmosphere at elite prep schools in the D.C. area (such as this one in Vanity Fair, which has been relentlessly anti-Trump and Republican since at least 2016) cannot locate Kavanaugh at the scene of specific crimes. Most Americans (59 percent) think he should not be confirmed if Ford's allegation is true, but a majority of Republicans think he should be confirmed even if he did assault her.
  2. Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices? Almost certainly not, and it probably would be inadvisable in any case. The Supreme Court is part of the government after all, and the justices read the opinion polls and headlines too. They are selected by one politician (the president) and vetted by others (senators). Getting politics out of the process is impossible and ultimately, elections do indirectly change the makeup of the bench. One argument that Kavanugh is guilty as charged is that the sexual assault accusations didn't come up against Neil Gorsuch (also an alum of Georgetown Prep, by the way). Conservatives counter that activists are targeting Kavanaugh because the seat he might be taking will change the balance of the Court, the midterms are nigh, and this is a way for Democrats to derail Trump's presidency. There's no question that Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee who knew about and disregarded Ford's allegations since July, acted poorly in the matter. Had she raised these concerns when they first surfaced—or even during the actual confirmation hearings—they could have been dealt with in a less super-charged way. But maybe that was the point of withholding them until the last minute? It's also true that Supreme Court nominations have always been flash points for politicking, even before the watershed moment of Robert Bork back in the 1980s. Yet if there is no way to completely drain politics out of the process, there are surely ways to make Supreme Court nominations less ridiculously and obviously politicized. The problem here resides with the Senate, which in recent memory flipped back and forth between getting rid of the filibuster rule for judicial appointees. Democrats and Republicans have reversed sides on this issue in the most brazen ways possible, reducing legislative process to mere politics. Both houses of Congress have shown themselves to be tied to their parties first, and Congress, a branch of government that should be fully independent of the White House, second. The hyper-politicization of this is all on the Senate's head and it is up to them to fix it.
  3. Will things ever get back to "normal"? At least since the 2000 election, which was ultimately decided by a coin flip, there has been a pervasive sense of unreality in American politics that calls to mind the novels of Philip K. Dick. The 2016 election, in which the eventual victor promised to contest the results if he lost and the loser is now claiming Donald Trump is illegitimate, is simply the latest episode. But all of this started in earnest at least during the early 1990s, when literally any charge, however unsubstantiated, was being lobbed at Bill Clinton. By 1994, the Rev. Jerry Falwell, erstwhile preacher, president of Liberty Baptist University, and the head of the Moral Majority, was hawking a completely insane documentary that said the president was directly implicated in "countless" murders in Arkansas (and let's not even start talking about Vince Foster). Falwell was not a fringe player and by the time George W. Bush was "selected" president a few years later, similarly grandiose conspiracy theories about him and stolen elections were being showcased in well-regarded news outlets. We have crossed a line where if someone can dream it, someone will publish it. And there doesn't seem to be any directional change on the horizon. We have made it acceptable to say anything, believe anything, and still flourish in the political arena.

It's the tragicomedy of America that we get the government deserve. If there is any grand takeaway from not just the past few weeks but the past few years, it's that all of us, but especially the growing ranks of non-partisan independents need to insist on and demand better from the representatives of the dying major political parties, who have shown a willingness to lie to the American people about everything from state surveillance and war to policy implications to basic biographical details.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Careless||

    Some of the accusations are credible on their face

    Really? Why haven't I heard about those? All I've been hearing about are ones with nothing but evidence against them and ludicrous claims

  • JesseAz||

    To only thing one needs to know to address Ford's credibility is she scrubbed all her social media prior to coming forward. This is the act of someone hiding something. There is also the fact that her account has now changed 4 times. And lastly the fact that her polygraph is the most laughable polygraph in history. The point of the polygraph is to get body responses to questions, so they asked her no actual questions about the event. These are all acts that discount her credibility.

  • Careless||

    She also testified in her polygraph to something that is not in her current story, unless it's changed again

  • Tony||

    Keep grasping you pathetic toads.

    Tell me mum, when Trump pulls the nomination, where will it tickle you?

  • JesseAz||

    Tony, do you know what the phrase grasping at straws actually means?

  • Tony||

    Does the future of the supreme court depend on this question, or are you perhaps yanking at hay?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Tell me Tony, when conservatives and libertarians decide they've had enough of you progtard, where will it tickle YOU?

  • seahorsedan||

    In her opening she claims she lied by omission to her own parents because she knew that they would never have approved of her attending such a gathering to begin with. By her own testimony she claims she lied to her own parents from day one. Was she lying that day to her own family or to the whole country today? The question of does she lie has been answered. SHE LIES!

  • retiredfire||

    When going through the process of being contacted by Feinstein's office, she was staying with her parents, yet she says she didn't say anything to them about the incident.
    Why, as a grown adult, would she be unwilling to tell them of this event 36 years after it happened?
    She couldn't possibly have been concerned about the kind of reaction she claims to have wanted to avoid at the time.
    Apparently the family letters of support came mostly from her husband's side of the family, and not from her own parents, who by now must be aware of what she is claiming. Their silence and her unwillingness to discuss it with them is also telling.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Yeah.

    I'm getting really tired of hearing about how "credible" the accusations are.

    Credibility depends on tangible proof of any affirmative condition claim (about anything).

    And none of the accusers have any tangible proof - or credibility.

  • ||

    Credibility depends on tangible proof

    It's debatable whether credible vs. plausible are really all that different. You can claim this evidence standard, but it's rather common to equate the two words.

    It's certainly plausible.

  • Dace Highlander||

    On this topic, since you equate credible and plausible, could you define what would be a non-credible accusation? I mean it's already missing a when, a where, and the who has denied even knowing the accuser, the corroborating witnesses named by the accuser have already denied the accusations. You are left with a what (attempted rape), no why and the who as above is in question. Please expound on what you would find non-plausible, non credible.

  • ||

    Dr. Ford's accusation, given her age and where she went to school and the circumstances she describe are plausible. A reasonable person could believe that it might have happened, in spite of the lack of corroborating evidence. Such evidence is particularly likely to be lacking, giving the length of time here. The plausibility doesn't mean it carries that much weight, and it's certainly not enough to be a basis for judging the accused, but it's still plausible.

    Swetnick's account doesn't match this standard, given both her age and the circumstances she describes and where she went to school and her lawyer. The sworn affidavit doesn't make up for the rest of it.

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    It is not credible without a when. If this was such a traumatic event, the date, location, clothing she wore, etc would be seared into her brain. Sorry, it's a hack job of an accusation, specifically designed to be unverifiable.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    You notice who didn't come to support her? Her whole family...

    They know her too well, I think.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Exactly. Any bad events that have happened to me, have a crazy amount of detail seared into my brain.

  • Dace Highlander||

    So, if there is a nexus (however remote or without evidence) where someone could have possibly, but not probably, interacted then you deem an accusation credible? Do you think the SJW/Progressives/Leftists/Democratic Party will abide by this same standard when their candidate for SCOTUS is being interroeeerrrrviewed and put to the question?

    I, for one, believe that the process has been irrevocably changed. The age of accusation politics has arrived. Resistance is futile. You will be made to service the Prog.

  • MSimon||

    Even the abortion thing is silly. We will have a Black Market within hours of any laws being passed.

    This is America.

  • Nardz||

    She's already crying and wearing giant glasses to magnify this.
    GTFO here

  • loveconstitution1789||

    See... I vote for Nardz to be our official Reason reporter of this event.

    No bullshit on his watch!

  • DiegoF||

    We should've set up a live stream, the way the Reason reporters do for the debates!

  • JesseAz||

    Glasses mean credible. It's why they have a girl with glasses porn category.

  • Libertymike||

    Credible as in genuinely cock hungry?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    It helps,the, take two or three of them at a time.

  • ||

    So, who was the guy with the beard who kept consoling her as though she had just lost her children in a gang shooting?

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Every single day of your sorry-ass, pathetic life that you spend pretending to be a libertarian is a day that you act in bad faith, Goth Fonzie.

    If you were a real libertarian, you would understand why the presumption of innocence exists in this country and why the burden of proof falls on the accuser and not the accused.

    And if you had a shred of decency in you, you would understand why smearing people with evidence-free accusations that can never be either proven or disproven is morally wrong.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    If you were a real libertarian, you would understand why the presumption of innocence exists in this country and why the burden of proof falls on the accuser and not the accused.

    This. So. Much. Fucking. This.

  • MSimon||

    Yes.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    If you were a real libertarian, you would understand why the presumption of innocence exists in this country and why the burden of proof falls on the accuser and not the accused. And if you had a shred of decency in you, you would understand why smearing people with evidence-free accusations that can never be either proven or disproven is morally wrong.

    That would explain why right-wingers -- the birthers, the Pizzagaters, the Benghazi Fever victims, the 'lock her up' chanters, the '"Muslim Kenyan socialist-communist' bigots, the superstitious goobers -- tend to be faux libertarians rather than genuine libertarians.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Damn. Straight to the burn unit with Mikey.

  • TuIpa||

    You know it!!

    "Nu uh!" Is a solid burn!!!

  • TuIpa||

    Really though, your fuck buddies are gone. There's h no heckler's veto for you amore. You look even dumber than normal nuthugging the Rev and vastly overreacting to his banal input just to cheap shot somebody, no matter how stupid he is.

  • Careless||

    If you find yourself allied with AK on something like this, it's time to reevaluate.

  • Troglodyte Rex||

    Yeah...some people said something *I* didn't like so I am gong to ascribe it to everyone I don't like.

    Fucking revisionist.

  • damikesc||

    If you were a real libertarian, you would understand why the presumption of innocence exists in this country and why the burden of proof falls on the accuser and not the accused.

    As was said elsewhere, "Believe the women" led to blacks being hanged in trees. Minorities, in particular, might want to be REALLY careful about reducing due process to nothing given history.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    The theory, or so I gather, is that they're now a large enough fraction of the population that THIS time they'll be the ones doing the lynching, and due process would just get in their way.

  • JesseAz||

    It still leads to loads of title ix expulsions.

  • gzuckier||

    The presumption of innocence doesn't really apply in a job application, does it?
    "I don't know how the money from the till vanished at my last job"
    "Ok, well that's good enough for me, you're hired! "

  • Ship of Theseus||

    It absolutely does apply. You can research this. You're not allowed to deny someone a job based on evidence-free allegations.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Where did The Jacket say anything against the presumption of Kavanaugh's innocence?

    All he said was that Ford's story is credible. Now, you may disagree about her credibility, but a discussion about her credibility is different than a discussion about her being able to prove anything.

  • sarcasmic||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Merely entertaining that question proves that you hate Trump and voted for Hillary.

  • JesseAz||

    There's tons of evidence that would change my mind. You know... Like evidence. So far there is none. That's the problem here.

  • ThomasD||

    Oh this

    "Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?"

    is much worse.

    It's either ridiculously naive or profoundly disingenuous.

    The only way to make SCOTUS picks less political is to overturn Marbury v. Madison.

    Pleather Fonzi just aint gonna be down with that.

  • MSimon||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    A vaginal swab with DNA tests.

    But it never got that far.

    So pictures.

    Or witnesses.

    Even some one she told about the "event" at the time.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    The first question should be "Why the fuck am I watching this?"

    The second question should be "What life-fulfilling experience could I be having right now instead?"

  • John||

    Answers

    Because you are a masochist

    Trimming your toenails or picking your nose would be two things that would be more life fulling than this.

  • ||

    Anybody who responds that she is 100% certain about something that happened 35 years ago that she didn't write down or talk to anyone about is not being truthful.

    This is useless.

  • Bender B. Rodriguez||

    Can this please be over already? Christ, this is one exhausting nothingburger.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Question #4: Why would anyone watch this?

    Kavanaugh will be confirmed. All the Lefties will give their lefty take. All the Senators will publicly act like the hacks that they are.

  • John||

    Yes Shreek, you are a moron. We know that.

  • sarcasmic||

    I'm not sure when the comment section of Reason was hijacked by conservative fucktards, but back in the day, you could be relatively sure that people on these boards had at least a passing knowledge of what libertarians believe. Now, all the real libertarians are drowned out by this asinine righty-lefty shit.

    Pretty much.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Guilty until proven innocent is a core libertarian tenet.

  • sarcasmic||

    You showed that straw man who is boss.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Well you can explain then how that is not a value shared by conservatives and libertarians, right?

  • sarcasmic||

    Other than Tony, who doesn't count, I'm not aware of anyone here who is saying that the guy is did all these things and that should disqualify him. You are countering an argument that no one is making.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Well that's blatantly false, but I guess that goes with the territory.

  • sarcasmic||

    Alrighty then, show me where people are saying he is guilty until proven innocent. I certainly didn't say that. SPB didn't. So who did?

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    I made a credible accusation. Prove it's wrong.

  • sarcasmic||

    Nick saying "Some of the accusations are credible on their face..." is not an accusation of guilt.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Evidence.

    Sarah Palin's Buttplug|9.26.18 @ 6:39PM|#

    New charges just out from 1998 - rapey rough-handling stuff again from Kavanaugh.

    John start your rape apologist shit up now!

    Precisely how can john be an apologist to something which is at least unproven and most likely (given the lack of evidence) not true?

  • sarcasmic||

    Your troll-meter needs calibration. That was obviously someone stirring the pot.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Such a quick rationalization. That's credible.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So you're doubling down on that.

  • damikesc||

    The lewd behavior of Kavanaugh

    What lewd behavior?

    Drinking?

    Am I at Reason or the WCTU?

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Serious question for you: when you have a situation where an accusation is being made that can't be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, but at the same time it's also impossible for the person being accused to prove that he DIDN'T do what he is being accused of, who deserves to get the benefit of the doubt?

  • sarcasmic||

    who deserves to get the benefit of the doubt?

    Depends on the situation. We're not talking about a court of law here where the accused is being sentenced to prison. We're talking about a job interview. If a bunch of credible people are making the same accusation, then perhaps it should be considered. I'm not saying that in this such a case either. Not everything is a fucking court room, and court room standards need not apply to every situation in life.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Sarcasmic wants the whole thing to burn.

    He is still waiting for Anarchy-Land.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    "Job interview".

    I think I'm beginning to understand how it is that you can claim with a straight face that it's no big deal when other countries impose tariffs on us, but it's the worst thing in the world if we retaliate with a tariff on someone else. You're as completely and totally full of shit as your buddy Weigel down there.

  • sarcasmic||

    I think I'm beginning to understand how it is that you can claim with a straight face that it's no big deal when other countries impose tariffs on us, but it's the worst thing in the world if we retaliate with a tariff on someone else.

    You don't understand anything if you think that's what I've said.

    Does it suck when other countries impose tariffs on our exports? Yes, of course. A relative of mine has lost 25% of his business thanks to China's lobster tariff. Thing is, the reason the Chinese aren't buying those lobsters is because the price went up. Many of them are having to pass on a lobster dinner, and that sucks for them.

    Does that justify imposing taxes on Americans? No. That's were we diverge. The only way a tariff can have the desired effect of harming a foreign producer is to first harm domestic consumers. Tariffs on Chinese goods are not paid by the Chinese. They are paid by Americans.

    I find it really strange that people who otherwise understand that taxes drag down the economy suddenly think that taxes boost the economy when their team does it.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    So you will be happy if Trump succeeds and gets tariffs rolled back to a lesser point than before January 2017? Isn't that what we're all hoping for, whether you hate Trump or not?

  • gzuckier||

    Precisely
    "I am for reducing taxes, and also for instituting a 40% tax on all that imported clothing people buy".

  • MSimon||

    Trump favors zero tariffs in both directions.

    I assume he is working towards that end.

    In the mean time supply chains under pressure adapt. Just as they do in wartime.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So when CPS came and interviewed you that was also a job interview. Do you think you were entitled to presumption of innocence or would you be OK with just a feeling about your qualifications by a CPS agent?

  • sarcasmic||

    There should always be a presumption of innocence when there is a possibility of using force.

  • TuIpa||

    Sarc, you're making a fool of yourself. I am resisting the urge to tell you to go home because you're drunk.

  • sarcasmic||

    If I was applying for a job at some restaurant, and some of the people at that restaurant had worked with me before, would it be unreasonable for the manager to talk with those people before making a decision on hiring me? If those people said I was a dickbag, would the manager be wrong to not hire me?

    Look. I think this whole affair with Mr. K is disgusting. I don't believe a word of it. Yes he should get the benefit of the doubt. However if the accusers and their stories were credible, I might hesitate.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    There, was that so hard?

  • sarcasmic||

    I never said otherwise. Talk about guilty until proven innocent.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    And yet you agreed with buttplug's accusation. Those two things are not compatible. That's not presumed guilt or even a "credible" accusation. That's based on your own postings.

  • sarcasmic||

    And yet you agreed with buttplug's accusation.

    Huh? I said that I didn't take his accusation seriously.

  • KevinP||

    If those people said I was a dickbag, would the manager be wrong to not hire me?

    Human beings talk smack about other human beings all the time. ALL THE TIME. I would be very cautious about not hiring someone based solely upon unsubstantiated or uncorroborated accusations.

    And in many states, an employer who passed by a qualified candidate solely because of unsubstantiated or uncorroborated accusations would be opening themselves up to legal troubles.

  • BYODB||

    It doesn't matter if it's a courrt of law or a job interview, it's an unprovable allegation in either circumstance. You'd be a fool to consider such things in either case unless you believe emotional reasoning has value over empiricism.

  • sarcasmic||

    So you're saying that there should be no such thing as a character reference.

  • TuIpa||

    Honestly? No there shouldn't. What's the point? People like, and have people like for them. They also get lied to, and people are false to each other constantly.

    But if you insist on one, then it should matter...no more than 5%.

  • TuIpa||

    *like not like

  • TuIpa||

    Omfg Google *lie not like

  • BYODB||

    That would be a strawman sarcasmic, it's not what I said.

  • sarcasmic||

    That would be a strawman sarcasmic, it's not what I said.

    What is it with people misusing these fucking fallacies? I didn't make an argument against opposing character references. That would be a straw man. I'm trying to clarify.

    So you're saying you do think character references matter? How can they unless they've gone through an entire court process and been proven beyond a reasonable doubt to be true? If the words of the reference don't have corroborating court papers complete with a judge's signature, doesn't that make them meaningless? Notice the question marks. That makes those statements questions, not arguments for or against a position.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Just shouting that it's not a strawman fallacy doesn't make it so. That is NOT what he said. No, you didn't make an arguement against character references, you claimed that HE did.

    But let's stick with your character references, do you feel any obligation on the part of someone making a negative recommendation to support their claim, or do you hust assume that every claim is equally valid and tally up the pros and cons? One is a rational position, the other is emotional.

  • sarcasmic||

    Just shouting that it's not a strawman fallacy doesn't make it so.

    And shouting strawman doesn't make it so either. I attempted to restate what he said, and apparently got it wrong. Jesus you guys are so damn touchy.

    do you feel any obligation on the part of someone making a negative recommendation to support their claim, or do you hust assume that every claim is equally valid and tally up the pros and cons?

    Ever heard of 'false dichotomy' or 'excluding the middle'? Because that's what you're doing.

    But I'll answer the stupid question anyway. If the claim is that someone is a serial rapist, well then duh there better be some evidence to support that claim. Now if a whole bunch of people say someone is a jerk, they are probably right. Or maybe they're all jerks. Who knows? But that kind of a claim can't really be proven either way, unless you've got some magic jerk-o-meter that I don't know about.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    "What is it with people misusing these fucking fallacies?"

    That sure sounds like a dispassionate reply.

  • BYODB||

    What I said:

    It doesn't matter if it's a courrt of law or a job interview, it's an unprovable allegation in either circumstance. You'd be a fool to consider such things in either case unless you believe emotional reasoning has value over empiricism.

    What you said:


    So you're saying that there should be no such thing as a character reference.

    If it's not a strawman, it's you misunderstanding what I'm saying either accidentally or deliberately. Maybe I didn't state my position clearly enough, in fairness, but it seems only a fool would interpret what I said into character references. As an example of why that's a foolish extrapolation, refer to the disparity in how many people have provided positive character references vs. the one's who have provided negative character references.

    If you don't consider that, than you're emoting which was my initial point.

  • sarcasmic||

    it's you misunderstanding what I'm saying either accidentally or deliberately

    Are you talking specifically about Mr K, or about hypothetical allegations? If you're talking specifically about Mr K, well duh rape allegations are not a character reference. If you're talking about my hypothetical restaurant interview, then allegations of being a dickbag by former coworkers are a negative character reference.

  • BYODB||


    Are you talking specifically about Mr K, or about hypothetical allegations?

    Either.

    If you're talking about my hypothetical restaurant interview, then allegations of being a dickbag by former coworkers are a negative character reference.

    As a hiring manager, I'm not really sure I would ever accept negative character references since notably no one would ever include a negative character reference on their resume. I don't think you understand what a character reference even is, or what is or is not allowed by law in terms of what a former employer can even say about you in the first place.

  • BYODB||

    And, just to clarify further, the point in terms of character references is that they aren't even comparable in the first place between public service and private employment since in private employment situations you'd be hard pressed to find a negative character reference unless the applicant provided it themselves. In that instances, hell, I wouldn't hire them because they're simply an idiot.

  • sarcasmic||

    in private employment situations you'd be hard pressed to find a negative character reference unless the applicant provided it themselves

    The hypothetical restaurant situation I posted actually happens all the time. Lots of jobs out there require applications, not resumes, and don't follow all of the legal rules. There's a whole world out there that operates in a manner that would not be described as professional. You would be horrified if you got a close look.

  • BYODB||


    Lots of jobs out there require applications, not resumes, and don't follow all of the legal rules.

    I'm well aware, but you'd be an idiot to provide negative character references yourself would you not? That's rather the point.

    And factually speaking, most restaurants (your Applebee's or IHOP or what have you) will in fact hire most any yahoo off the street with no job experience, so all you'd need to do in order to erase a negative history at an employer is simply don't list them at all.

    I was a dumb kid once myself, and this was obvious to me even back then.

  • sarcasmic||

    you'd be an idiot to provide negative character references yourself would you not? That's rather the point.

    I wasn't saying that. Never mind.

  • TuIpa||

    That's slightly better.

  • Jerry B.||

    Now if they said they believe they worked with you, but can't remember where or when, and the other people they said saw your dickbag behavior say they weren't there and didn't, would it be fair for the manager to not hire you?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    What if the screeening service the restaurant used for it's prospective employees had already screened this individual thoroughly six times already? And that the people saying the individual was a dickbag had major credibility issues and a story full of holes with no compensating factors?

  • BYODB||


    There should always be a presumption of innocence when there is a possibility of using force.

    There is indeed a constitutional basis for that argument, but logically one should extend the same consideration across the board if you care at all about justice or society.

    Hearsay is not a valid basis for anything other than confirmation of already existing biases. Crimes such as sexual assault or rape need to be abolished and replaced with a system of provable and well-defined criteria, likely under already existing violent crimes.

    Crimes such as 'rape', at least in the more modern loosey goosy definition, solely exist because of fairly blatant double standards when it comes to women. We insist they are equal, yet lower the burden of proof for them because social convention says that women are to be cherished and protected.

    It's a double standard that feminists welcome, and you can even see it in the so-called 'gender wage gap' since I have never once heard a feminist even mention the 'gender on-the-job mortality gap'.

  • sarcasmic||

    Is a character reference not hearsay?

  • BYODB||


    Is a character reference not hearsay?

    It is not, as they are based on at least nominally provable qualities. You don't just say "I think that guy is a dick", you say "I think that guy is a dick because we established a paper trail of their verbal abuse of coworkers."

    If I had an employee that came to me saying "This coworker should be fired" I would, for example, demand reasoning for that assumption and would need proof of the event. Without it, I would open myself up to lawsuits. The same should be true of hiring, since ulterior motives do in fact exist in the human psyche.

    I disagree with the entire notion of sex crimes, as I believe they create more harm than good and that they ultimately subvert our entire justice system. Crimes must be provable. That there is a special category of 'sexual crime' that can result in prison time on nothing more than accusations is absurd and abhorrent to our entire system of justice. Period.

  • sarcasmic||

    Well, I can see you've never worked in a restaurant. As far as what you said about sex crimes, you won't get any disagreement from me.

  • BYODB||

    I have worked in a restaurant, actually, during college. They never asked for a single character reference. In fact, they would hire any yahoo off the street but I wouldn't say it was a classy joint either. There's a reason why restaurants have high turnover, generally speaking.

  • sarcasmic||

    logically one should extend the same consideration across the board if you care at all about justice or society.

    Logically, yes. But we can't be logical about everything. We're human beings, not robots. Not only that, but often we must make decisions with less information than we would like. Sometimes hearsay is all we've got. It isn't a perfect world.

  • BYODB||


    Logically, yes. But we can't be logical about everything.

    So, yes, emoting. Which was my point.

    Sometimes hearsay is all we've got. It isn't a perfect world.

    If all you have is hearsay in this specific case, than you've ignored a large swath of actual evidence in favor of it by choice.

  • sarcasmic||

    If all you have is hearsay in this specific case, than you've ignored a large swath of actual evidence in favor of it by choice.

    Um, yeah. That's what I said. Sure. Whatever.

  • BYODB||

    *facepalm*

    I didn't say that's what you said, I provided an if-than-so progression.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Strawmen for EVERYBODY!

  • damikesc||

    If a bunch of credible people
  • gzuckier||

    This is not a testimonial process whose goal is to grant Kavanaugh with such honors as he has earned. The beneficiary of this process is not the job applicant, but the employer, as with any job application process.
    The goal of the process is to find the best possible SCOTUS justice. If there are equally qualified candidates who do not come with accusations of misbehavior, they move on and the questionable candidate does not.
    Ask any HR department.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So if this is just a "job interview" (it's not) and you're willing to overlook an incident for which there is no evidence, kavanaugh's defenders (those actually willing to live by a set of principles that are the foundation of our republic) are unreasonable winguts because...?

  • TuIpa||

    "Sarah Palin's Buttplug|9.27.18 @ 10:53AM|#

    Kavanaugh's defenders are political hacks just as much as the Senate Democrats who will shortly be grandstanding when "questioning" her."

    So then why are you legitimizing this stupidity?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    An argument should be evaluated on its strength, not what you think of the person making the argument.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Calling what's taking place right now a "job interview" is almost as Kafkaesque, Orwellian, and insane as calling the Salem Witch Trials or a trial by ordeal an actual trial.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Buttplugger is gonna be super butt hurt for weeks after Kavanaugh is confirmed and the lies didnt work.

  • Red Tony||

    Let's see.

    Libertarians on drugs: sure, go ahead.
    Leftists on drugs: decriminalize pot but everything else is illegal, also tax it to the hilt. (So slightly better than Republicans).

    Libertarians on immigration: varies between open-borders (the ideal) and the recognition that the welfare state makes open-borders impossible (the real).
    Leftists on immigration: so long as they vote Democrat, let 'em in.

    Libertarians on incarceration: if you didn't hurt anybody, you shouldn't be in jail.
    Leftists on incarceration: we need to reduce our prison population. Also we should get rid of due process for people we don't like.

    Libertarians on abortion: varies between pro-choice and pro-life; often depends on whether you consider the mother or the fetus the overriding interest.
    Leftists on abortion: kill that baby!

    Libertarians on gay marriage: go ahead and get married.
    Leftists on gay marriage: it is not enough that you're allowed to get married, everyone else must celebrate it, especially if they don't want to.

  • Red Tony||

    Libertarians on foreign policy: we should leave the rest of the world alone.
    Leftists on foreign policy: we should leave the rest of the world alone, unless somebody we characterize as "literally Hitler" is out there, in which case bombs away!

    I don't claim to speak for all libertarians, but I think this is a decent summary of both sides on the subjects you claimed "leftists and libertarians" all agree on; there's plenty of water between them. And along with that:

    Libertarians on free speech: say whatever the fuck you want.
    Leftists on free speech: say whatever the fuck you want, unless you offend me or some group that claims to be oppressed, in which case you should have your life ruined. Hate speech is not free speech.

    Libertarians on expanded police powers: it's bad because the state should not dictate your life.
    Leftists on expanded police powers: it's bad because they disproportionately affect people we claim to like. They're just not being aimed in the right direction.

    Libertarians on affirmative action: it's racist and it doesn't work. Scrap it.
    Leftists on affirmative action: it may not work, but it signals that we're trying to help out the oppressed and bring down the people on top who aren't us, so it's a good thing. It should be expanded.

  • Red Tony||

    I could go on, but the left and the right are in many cases anti-liberty; it's just that the right's excesses aren't coming out quite as strongly as those of the left in the current political moment. When the right is ascendant and pushing stupid shit (Satanic rape trials have been brought up on this board recently), then the left might become a better option...assuming they've climbed out of the bullshit they're currently preaching.

    And yes, I realize I'm replying to a troll, but the fact is that the left is not only barely on the libertarian side on many of these issues, they also aren't focused on them. They're focused on winning elections in order to gain power in order to enforce their vision of what the world should be on the rest of us. And at the moment, the right's vision is less terrifying than the left's, which is probably why libertarians are leaning right. (That's probably also helped by the fact that there is a bit of libertarianism in the Republican party, while there's no such strain in the Democratic party.)

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Or democratic senators like chris coons. So odd that you would forget that...

  • Red Tony||

    Oh my GOD bitch. You complained yesterday about "Democrats" and "leftists" being conflated. I purposefully don't conflate them here, and you complain "well Democrats aren't necessarily leftists!"

    Motherfucker you stated that the "left's" position is often closer to the libertarian position; I pointed out that's only true of certain subjects, and usually those aren't the ones that the left actually cares about. You set the fucking terms of debate, you got your ass slapped down, and now you try to motte and bailey by saying "well these aren't actual (by which you mean "all") Democrats, Manchin has never expressed the view that we should criminalize hate speech.

    Jesus shit motherfucker, the only reason to respond to you is so that if somebody wanders into a comments section wondering what the libertarians here think they don't mistake your inane ramblings for an example of libertarian thought. Now how about you just leave the board for the week, because nobody is impressed by your bullshit.

  • TuIpa||

    Daaaaamn Red Tony, shreek to the burn unit!

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Republicans are far better on free speech.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    You kind of left out freedom of political speech, and gun control.

    The left views any dissent as morally equivalent to violence, and seems utterly determined to render everybody defenseless. I find both of those stances pretty scary.

    The right isn't perfect on either score, but they're still enormously better than the left on those two factors, which is what decided things for me when I gave up on the LP back in the late 90's.

    If you can't argue with them, or shoot them in a pinch, you're pretty much at their mercy. The right doesn't demand that you be at their mercy, the left does. And they don't seem to have a lot of mercy, either.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    The left views any dissent as morally equivalent to violence

    WHO on "the left" views *any* dissent as morally equivalent to violence? Who?

    I know it's commonplace around here to assign some stereotypical extreme view to everyone in a tribe, but I don't think even the wokest college radical would claim that ANY dissent is "morally equivalent to violence".

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I could go on, but the left and the right are in many cases anti-liberty; it's just that the right's excesses aren't coming out quite as strongly as those of the left in the current political moment.

    I strongly disagree with this. I would argue both sides are equally bad.

  • Red Tony||

    I don't know that that's a strong disagreement. I think the right can certainly be as bad as the left. It just seems to me that right now the left is worse. The pendulum could easily swing the other way, and it will if loveprostitution gets his wish for an unstoppable Republican majority.

  • ||

    I think the right can certainly be as bad as the left. It just seems to me that right now the left is worse.

    I would agree with this. I don't tend to get much involved in the "which of the two sides is worse than the other" debates, because I don't think there's that much space between them, but I don't think it's right to say they're always exactly equal.

    The trouble on the left right now is that it has gotten very narrow. As the minority party, there is a limited number of voices, and the loudest voices have gone batshit with desperation. The Republicans are currently the big tent party, with many voices coming from many different directions.

    If there are some awful people on the Republican side, there are also some pretty decent people on the Republican side. The Democrat side is more monolithic because it's smaller, and more shrill at the moment because it's currently more threatened with obsolescence.

    I think things could realign pretty quickly, though, where if the Dems can rally around the more market-oriented forces within the party as the Repubs go this protectionist direction then in ten years the Dems may actually become the less evil of the two parties.

    I almost certainly still won't vote for them, though, because "less evil" is still "evil."

  • TuIpa||

    Yes but you're an idiot.

  • Nardz||

    "I would argue both sides are equally bad."

    Of course you would, Chipper: you're a pussy desperate for validation and think that progressives are the "cool" clique. GFY

  • ThomasD||

    " I would argue both sides are equally bad."

    No. You could.

    But you didn't actually argue anything.

  • gzuckier||

    Yes, you don't see mainstream politicians on the right leading a mob in chants of "Lock her up, lock her up", referring to the opponent he defeated 2 years ago who doesn't happen to have any criminal charges even as a possibility.
    No, certainly not. That would be anti-liberty and terrifying.

  • chipper me timbers||

    Leftists on free speech: It burns us! Takes it off us!

  • chipper me timbers||

    "Leftists on drugs: decriminalize pot but everything else is illegal, also tax it to the hilt. (So slightly better than Republicans)."

    Except that the only congressional bills to legalize marijuana have come from Republicans...

  • Red Tony||

    Because trollplug complained yesterday that "leftists" and "Democrats" were being conflated, I purposefully avoided doing that here, so "rightists" are the right rather than Republicans and "leftists" are the left rather than Democrats.

    Yes there's a lot of overlap, but generally the left at pays lip service to potheads.

  • TuIpa||

    He still found a way to bitch, the shit up the thread and flee. You really shouldn't do anything but insult him and remind him he never paid his bet.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    You're right, libertarians and "the left" are not identical. That was never claimed to be the case. Only that on those issues that you mentioned, the libertarian view is closer to the "left" view than it is to the "right" view.

    So for example:

    Libertarians on incarceration: if you didn't hurt anybody, you shouldn't be in jail.
    Leftists on incarceration: we need to reduce our prison population. Also we should get rid of due process for people we don't like.

    Rightists on incarceration: The law's the law! If you break the law you should go to jail! If there's not enough jails, build some more!

    Which one is closer to the libertarian view?

  • TuIpa||

    Neither.

    What now fucko.

  • TuIpa||

    Hi I'm chemjeff, I respond to a good post about motives by pooping all over myself iny rush to defend leftists. And then pretend I didn't.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Little Jeffy showcases the limits of his tiny little child mind........ again.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    except all the people the left demands be put in jail for unpaid fees, fines and quality of life "crimes"...unless it impacts minorities or disadvantaged people then such shouldn't apply but only to those categories of people.

  • Here for the outrage||

    Boom

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    I largely agree, although I think the people who look like "conservative fucktards" are really just anti-progressives, rather than conservatives per se.

  • BYODB||

    You can easily discern a conservative by their votes on spending. In short, there are few if any of them in government.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    ...What website do all the people who actually believe in free minds and free markets visit these days? That's a serious question....

    Mises.org?

  • Shirley Knott||

    The Adam Smith Institute blog, Samizdata.net, and Cafe Hayek come to mind. Also the blog of the Independent Institute.

  • SteveMG||

    Yes folks, a person who uses the moniker "Sarah Palin's Buttplug" wants to elevate the discussion and wishes to raise serious questions.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    PTSD is your sock?

  • TuIpa||

    Bro, you know you told us you sock, so stop pretending you don't.

  • TuIpa||

    "Another lie. I don't sock."

    I just randomly have 50 burner accounts that I forget the password to

    LOL

    You're lying garbage bro, no one will ever believe you.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Poor Buttplugger. So upset and does not even realize that he the idiot all the time.

  • John||

    1. No, there is no way the uncorroborated accounts of some drunken party that happened 30+ years ago is going to change my opinion of Kavanaugh. Even if he got up and admitted to it, one drunked grope 30 years ago doesn't outweigh what appears to be an entire professional career conducted in an ethical manner

    2. Sure we can. Tell the Democrats to stop looking at the Supreme Court as a way to get whatever they want when the voters won't give it to them. All of the things conservatives want are just for the Court to get out of the way and let the electorate decide issues. Overturning Roe, for example, would not make abortion illegal. It would just put the question of its legality back into the political process where it belongs. It is the Democrats who want the court to step in and give them the policies they want when the voting public won't comply. And that is what has made the Court political.

    3. Yes, things will go back to normal when Republicans grow a pair of balls and stop falling for this bullshit. Confirm Kavanaugh and make it clear these tactics don't work and the Democrats will be less likely to employ them in the future. If you want things to return to normal, you should hope Kavanaugh is confirmed.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Politics has always been a tough and somewhat nasty business, but Gillespie's real personal definition of things "getting back to normal" is someone like Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton becoming the president again. Remember how happy he was when Obama won, all that bullshit he was spewing about how the "libertarian moment" had finally arrived?

    Almost every word that comes out of his mouth is a lie. He's a straight-up con man, plain and simple.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    It goes without saying that you will never be called to publicly testify for anything, Weigel.

    For the simple reason that your repulsive, rosacea-riddled face would instantly cause the entire viewing audience to start uncontrollably vomiting, and every TV viewer would instantly change the channel to something far less disgusting, like "Naked and Afraid" or "Impractical Jokers".

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    You know Buttplug's true identity?

  • DiegoF||

    Kudos to you for actually reading the article. I think everyone else here just found the newest Kavanaugh thread and started posting.

  • Bearded Spock||

    Wait... Reason has articles?

    I thought this was a chat room.

  • Nardz||

    "unwillingness to take these allegations at face value"

    No, I think we are taking them at face value.
    That value is 0

  • Don't look at me!||

    Vote everyone out of office. Everyone, every time.

  • Aloysious||

    ^ Especially the fossilized zombies, like Feinstein and McConnel

  • Nardz||

    Time for Ford's statement.
    Should be fun

  • DiegoF||

    I think we'd all read the statement previously. This is our first time hearing her read it.

    I anticipated this, if she really was going to testify; she's visibly having trouble keeping composure. The fence-sitting Senators--and America--will find this very sympathetic. Kavanaugh is toast.

  • DiegoF||

    Maybe I was a little hasty; the DA has not even questioned her yet. But this is indeed not looking good right now. K's only real hope is that the DA will indeed tear her to shreds--because his awkward nerdy ass sure ain't gonna save itself.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Physician heal thyself.

  • DiegoF||

    I think she's a psychologist, not a doctor.

  • DiegoF||

    She just works for a med school, as many psychologists do.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    I was referring to nicky.

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?

    Yes, there is. Get the federal government to start acting within the most strict interpretation of their constitutional bounds.

    Our federal government has grown so large that they impact every decision you make. Depending on the whims of the bureaucracy and the elected officials, your life can be completely upended and there is nothing you can do about it.

    The only option anyone has it to try to torpedo the worst people trying to enter our government.

    As long as the government is picking winners and losers, or even worse just simply crushing people and businesses by sheer stupidity, this sort of hysterical behavior regarding government is not only warranted, it's the most sane option left.

  • Nardz||

    +++

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Yes, there is. Get the federal government to start acting within the most strict interpretation of their constitutional bounds."

    About the only way to do that would be to get rid of all the SC judges and replace them with a supercomputer programmed with everything that James Madison had to say about the Constitution and the powers of the federal government.

    Enforcement would require the current scope of federal activity to shrink by about 90%

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    When I was in law school, my professor in a Con Law seminar got Justice Scalia to come to our class one week and this question came up.

    His view was that, so long as people are treating the Court as a de facto amendment process, rather than adhering to the Constitution as written, SCOTUS nominations should be this political, if not moreso. Groups are trying to give or take away federal powers continue to circumvent the amendment process, instead appealing to the ideologies of 5 unelected and unaccountable judges. That warrants an extreme level of politicization.

  • John||

    Scalia is exactly right about that.

  • DiegoF||

    Interesting! I've never seen that in writing from him. I'll have to look for it; his philosophy is interesting even when I don't like it.

  • John||

    We have gay marriage and legal abortion in this country because the Supreme Court decided we should. You cannot expect the court to enforce policy on controversial and emotional issues and then not expect the selection of justices to be political and emotional.

  • BYODB||

    Precisely. I'm fed up with the court being an end run around the amendment process.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    +1

  • BillyG||

    Agreed, this is the way to depoliticize SCOTUS. Along with a good portion of the rest of government. Start with enforcing the interstate commerce clause as written, not as perverted.

  • John||

    Some of the accusations are credible on their face, though there has been little in the way of concrete corroboration.

    Is Nick realy this stupid or just this dishonest. What makes an "accusation credible on its face"? Moreover, what does that even mean if it is? I don't think Nick has any idea the answers to those questions. The issue is whether an allegation is true not whether it is credible. Considering it credible just determines whether it is worth considering. Once you consider it, its "crediblity" is irrelevent. You either decide it is true or decide it is false. In this case, the fact that these allegations are 30+ years old and have no corroboration means they are unlikely to be true and certainly not something that rises to the level of ending someone's carrer over. That is it. The fact that they are "credible" means nothing after you decide the ultimate issue. If you think their being "credible" means something after that, you are basically saying the guy should be treated as guilty no matter what. Even if he proved his innnocence byond a doubt, the allegations still would be strictly speaking "credible". The fact is they might be "credible" but they are clearly untrue or very unlikley to be true. So their being "credible" is no longer relevent.

    Is there an IQ test you have to fail to work at Reason?

  • Nardz||

    She needed a better acting coach.
    No matter how hard she tries, she just can't get actual tears to come out.
    Really wastes those glasses

  • Nardz||

    Not even watery eyes

  • Don't look at me!||

    Will she describe his penis?

  • DiegoF||

    I like to think it resembles Link from Zelda.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Will things ever get back to "normal"?

    This is it.

  • DiegoF||

    No, this is it.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Posted in the Round-up thread but bears repeating:

    It's all just a sham. Thirty-six years after the fact, it just comes down to which side was sufficiently coached in acting to sway the constitutes of a few vulnerable or spineless Republicans.

  • John||

    One of the dumbest things the media and a large part of the public believes is that you can tell the truth about somehting by actually listening to the people involved. You really can't. How believable someone is rarely has much to do with whether or not they are telling the truth. Lots of people can be compelling liars or manage to either through mistake or force of will convince themselves to believe a lie. Lots of other people, because they are just awkward or not well spoken or a little out of the ordinary in some way, can never come across as truthful no matter how truthful they are actually being. When you line two people up with two competing accounts of something, absent other evidence that corroborates one or the other's account, it just ends up being a popularity and charisma contest that has nothing to do with the actual truth.

  • DiegoF||

    And she will win that contest! All the charisma she needs to display is being frightened and traumatized. What charisma does Brett Kavanaugh bring to anything?

    That plus the lack of any standard of evidence means the DA better obliterate her credibility, as I've been saying.

  • John||

    I am not so sure about that. Without any corroborating evidence, people's opinion of her testimony will mostly be an exercise in confirmation bias. The people who already beleive her or want to believe her will see everything she says and does as proof of her truthfulness and the people who don't believe her will see it as the opposite. I think short of Ford or Kavanaugh being caught in some enormous lie or Kavanaugh just admitting it, which I think is very unlikely, this hearing will have zero effect on public opinion.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    The republicans just need to confirm him. No one gives a shit about any of this except the people who have already made up their mind. Most people are barely aware of this whole event.

    It's just like a government shutdown. No one really gives a shit.

  • DiegoF||

    Here it is, the DA. The only woman who can save Kavanaugh's ass. It all comes down to this! She sounds excellent so far.

    John where are you! Be our sherpa!

  • MatthewSlyfield||


    Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices? Almost certainly not

    Sure there are. Two ways.

    1. Eliminate the public committee hearings on confirmation of nominees (not just SCOTUS justices). They are not required by the constitution, are a relatively recent invention, and are an invitation and opportunity to smear the nominee with false accusations with impunity.

    2. Alternatively: Treat the public confirmation hearing as the job interview it is. Committee members are not allowed to make speeches during the hearing. Only the committee chair and senior minority committee member are allowed to ask the nominee questions. Limit the length of questions to prevent speeches as a pretext to asking a question.

  • John||

    I think they need to eliminate public hearings. They accomplish nothing. Have the guy produce whatever reasonable documentation the Senate wants and meet privately with any Senator who wants to meet with him and then have the damn vote. I would not even have a committee vote. This whole thing is nothing but an invitation for one side or the other to make the whole thing into a circus.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Agreed. The hearings were a clownshow

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    There is a reason I listed eliminating the public hearings as #1. It's not just the Kavanaugh hearings that have been a clownshow, it's not even just the judicial confirmation hearings that have been a clownshow. The public confirmations hearings for all categories of nominees have always been a clownshow.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    I forgot to mention, under both 1 and 2, every nominee gets a vote of the full senate regardless of what the committee thinks.

  • JFree||

    Get rid of the DeRps. They have zero ability to grow up and it's pretty obvious now the limit of their maturity is high school.

  • Nardz||

    "One correction: I used bystander as an adjective..."

    Right

  • Alcibiades||

    A torrent of emotional venting and little else.

  • Cyto||

    A few days ago I opined here and elsewhere that the second objective here was to get the senate Republicans on video confronting the accuser. They refused a closed session for this reason. They objected to an independent attorney doing the questioning.

    So she testifies.

    And she wraps up her statement saying she is not a partisan. She is an independent woman.

    And then she says "I understand that a prosecutor will be doing the questioning. I have never been questioned by a prosecutor before. But since you will be judging my credibility, I hope that I will be able to engage with each of you on the committee. " (from memory, not a transcript)

    And there we have it.

    The goal is to get Senator (R) to directly engage her so they have some tape for the elections.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "Some of the accusations are credible on their face, though there has been little in the way of concrete corroboration."

    "Credible" You keep using this word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  • General_Tso||

    Nick Gillespie killed my father.

    Does that accusation have any credibility? Because I've shown as much 'proof' as any of these accusers.

  • MatthewSlyfield||


    Will things ever get back to "normal"?

    First you have to define what ever it is you consider "normal" and then offer evidence that there was some time in the past that was "normal"

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Normal, as near as I can tell, refers to the days when Liberals were slightly less unhinged and the Republicans politely rolled over due their every request in the hopes of fleeting positive praise from a leftist, but less brazenly leftist, media in which people held an unwarranted level of trust and respect.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Specifically, the brief period following the end of World War 2 until, i dunno, the Clinton years at tyre absolute latest. In truth, that "normal" period was the anomaly.

  • Eddy||

    "Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?" I would have to be convinced (a) that he's perjuring himself, and (b) his perjury is worse than the perjury of any possible replacement swearing/affirming to support the Constitution, then failing to do so.

    "Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?" Only the Supreme Court can get the Court out of politics. Don't blame the messenger - they took upon themselves the responsibility for making public policy, they can't shriek like violated vestal virgins when the President and Congress take them at their word and treat their judge jobs as political.

    "Will things ever get back to "normal"?" It's never been normal. Rutledge was rejected for his opposition to the Jay Treaty, amind (IIRC) speculations that he was mad.

  • DiegoF||

    I love the Jay Treaty! I'd neg his ass myself for that. I don't care for the Federalists for much else but I am 100% on their side on this.

    The Jay Treaty is still very much in play today! It's why American and Canadian Indians essentially have a permanent, irrevocable green card; in settling outstanding border issues it determined that both country's Indians could cross freely from one country's territory to the other's.

  • Eddy||

    I hadn't known that.

    The mainstream sources suggest he had "intermittent mental illness" after his wife died.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    So let's talk about the "presumption of innocence" and "due process" stuff for a moment.

    For a court of law, when a person is charged with a crime, everyone here agrees that the accused should enjoy the presumption of innocence and the burden of proof should fall on the plaintiff to prove the accusations against the accused.

    However, for an individual property owner acting with regards to his own property rights, there is no "presumption of innocence" or "due process" for the guests of said property owner. If I invite you onto my property, and then if I just simply change my mind about my invitation, I have every right to kick you off my property (so long as I don't violate your rights in some way). I don't have to grant you any due process, I don't have to presume you are innocent of whatever offense I think you committed against me, I just throw you out. Every libertarian worth his/her salt would agree with this as well.

    So the real question is, where the Kavanaugh fiasco falls on this continuum between "court of law" standards, and "individual property owner" standards. Clearly the Senate is not a court of law and I don't think anyone would seriously agree that Kavanaugh should enjoy the same protections at his hearing as he would enjoy as if he were criminally charged of a crime. On the other hand, the Senate is not a private organization, they are supposed to be acting on behalf of us, so they probably should not act as if they are private property owners.

  • John||

    Unless you are a complete moron, your judgement determines the standard of proof in an individual instance. "Presumption of innocence" is just a fancy way of saying "benefit of the doubt". Whether someone gets the benefit of the doubt depends upon that person's history and character and the amount of "doubt" required to disbelieve whatever accusation has been made against them.

    In Kavanaugh's case, he has 30+ years of professional service from which to judge his character. During that time, he has never before this been accused of doing anything wrong. The guy has worked with and had work for him dozens of women, all of whom have nothing but good things to say about him. He has been the subject of multiple FBI background checks that have never once resulted in any doubt about his character. There is not a single person who can claim to know him professionally as an adult that has a bad word to say about his character.

    What are we giving him the benefit of the doubt for? On the other side are a group of women, all of whome are known to be political partisans (funny how he is a mad rapist but never managed to touch anything but hard core Democrats) making accusations for the first time about events that are alledged to have happened decades ago for which there is not a single corroborating piece of evidence or witness.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    your judgement determines the standard of proof in an individual instance.

    That is different from what I am saying.

    For example, in a criminal trial, even if everyone, in their judgments, probably thinks that the accused did commit the crime, the accused is still granted a presumption of innocence nonetheless, and the opinions of the judge/etc. on the guilt or innocence of the accused don't change this fact.

    But for individual property owners, the only thing that matters at all is the individual judgment of the owner. There is no formal process, like in a court of law, to adjudicate disputes like the one I mentioned, nor should there be.

    So the judgments of the people doing the judging of the accused matter only somewhat compared to the formal protections granted to the accused. That is what I'm talking about.

  • John||

    I know what you are talking about. Yes, people apply different levels of proof in different situations. That fact, however, doesn't relieve you of the responsibility of being fair and rational. And by any fair and rational standard, Kavanaugh should get the benefit of the doubt here.

  • John||

    If Kananaugh doens't get the benefit of the doubt on this, then no man can ever get the benefit of the doubt on any accusation made by a woman no matter how good his known character or how absurd the allegation.

  • KevinP||

    Exactly. If this is going to be the standard, then every man and every woman who has a father, husband, brothers and sons, should be concerned that a single uncorroborated accusation from 30 years ago is enough to wreck a career and life.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    The other complicating factor, in my view, is that to the extent that SCOTUS has become a super-legislature rather than an impartial court, candidates for SCOTUS will suffer the same types of dirty tricks and smears that candidates for any other political office will suffer. Plenty of horrible things were said about Obama, Bush, the Clintons, Trump, etc., etc., in their political campaigns, not all of which were true, and some of which actually were accusations of a crime with very little hard evidence to support such accusations. If it's fair game to treat politicians like dirt when they are "applying for a job", why is it not fair fame to treat SCOTUS nominees in this way? It doesn't make the accusations true, but I have to wonder why they should be held to a higher standard than the politicians who nominate/vote for them.

  • ThomasD||

    Stopping Kavanaugh is substantially about preventing SCOTUS from becoming a super de-legislator.

  • Nardz||

    "If you can tell me when Mark Judge worked at SafeWay, then I could tell you when the attack occurred..."

    Umm

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Yeah, the latest accuser didn't "remember" when the attack happened until he released his calendar, and she could pinpoint when he didn't have an alibi. Who didn't see that coming?

  • chipper me timbers||

    There is no testimony that will change my mind about Kavanaugh because the testimony has nothing to do with all the reasons I already despise Kavanaugh.

    He's a terrible, terrible justice for libertarians. He's a police-state social conservative who worships at the altar of big government and court precedent. He will do absolutely NOTHING to roll back the last 100 years of the progressive growth of the administrative state, the regulatory avalanche that buries Americans' freedoms today, the overcriminalization of everyday life, the surveilance state, or anything else a libertarian normally cares about. He seems to be ok on the 2A but that is funny enough the amendment that is on strongest footing these days.

    He's a nightmare for libertarians and a wet dream for progressives. Whatever Ford says will not change that.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    He's a police-state social conservative who worships at the altar of big government and court precedent.

    Except when it comes to the SUPER-PRECEDENT Roe v. Wade, which is a large part of the reason I opposed him before I ever heard of Dr. Ford.

    #SaveRoe

  • John||

    SUPER PRECEDENT

    You are largely a tiresome moron and a failure as a troll. But once in a while you come up with something brilliantly absurd. And this is one of those times. Bravo.

  • DiegoF||

    Well, he is a parody not a troll technically speaking, but proud we all are of him, yes.

  • TuIpa||

    He trolls with parody. Try to keep up.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Uhhhhhh, what? The idea that Roe v. Wade is a SUPER-PRECEDENT isn't something I just "came up with." It's an academically rigorous concept advanced by many prominent legal scholars.

  • John||

    Sure it is. That is a good follow up but don't go too far and step on your joke.

  • outcast||

    Wonder if the 17th Amendment had never happened if this would still be such a circus.

  • DiegoF||

    Many amendments' failure would have changed the fate of this process.

    The 17th. The 21st. The 19th....

  • DiegoF||

    Just having a bit of fun here of course.

  • Nardz||

    "That's my best estimate of how this could've happened..."

    Super credible

  • ||

    Some of the accusations are credible on their face

    This statement is not credible on it's face.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Gillespie drunkenly tried to grab my crotch at a Reason happy hour in the early 2000s. When? Where? I dunno, but if you provide with a list of HH's he attended between 2002 and 2007, I could pick one.

  • ThomasD||

    Just one? You didn't go back for more?

    Apparently that's the way you are supposed to establish your victim cred.

  • Duelles||

    Not going to watch. Did that (radio mostly) with the "Bork non confirmation " and know all I need to know about the swamp. Praying that the democrats implode, that Dr. Ford gets some more therapy - she'll need it after this, and that Avenatti gets disbarred.

  • Jerryskids||

    I certainly am not wild about Kavanaugh but I'm not the one who gets to pick the nominee and he appears to be better than most. It's not hard to think these allegations are simply a last-ditch effort to keep Trump from filling another seat and it doesn't matter who the pick is, the allegations are going to fly. As was pointed out, everybody already knew there would be total resistance from the Dems, they had their minds made up before hearing the first word about the nominee. Funny how the GOP is always held to a higher standard and expected to keep an open mind on the matter. Absent Kavanaugh coming out and admitting he's a life-long Dallas Cowboys fan, this naked attempt to neuter Trump makes it nearly impossible not to give him the benefit of the doubt on his fitness for the Court.

  • John||

    Kavanaugh is not the best pick but he is not the worst either. And if he is not confirmed, unless you are Eddy who just wants a Catholic on the Court, there is no reason to believe whoever Trump picks in his place will be any better. The only reason anyone other than partisan Democrats want Kavanaugh to fail is just because they hate Trump and want to stick it to Trump in any way possible.

  • Eddy||

    "Eddy who just wants a Catholic on the Court"

    Turn in your Helm of Telepathy, it is obviously defective.

    Sotomayor is a Catholic. Anthony Kennedy was a Catholic (so was Edward "lady killer" Kennedy).

    I'd rather have a decent Prot or atheist on the Court than a Sotomayor or Kennedy (or William Brennan).

    I just checked to see if I could find what religion Janice Rogers Brown is, but I didn't find anything conclusive. But even if she shares Sotomayor's (and my) religion, I'd still support her.

  • Eddy||

    Also, Roger Taney was a Catholic.

    Overall, that's not a good enough batting average - I'd need some evidence beyond Catholic affiliation to support a Catholic justice.

  • John||

    You were screaming for the Catholic pro life woman who was the second choice last night. You are totally willing to ruin a man's career and reputation and walk away from defending an innocent man so you could get your beloved pro life Catholic on the court.

  • Eddy||

    I was working on an even longer answer, but then it occurred to me:

    John, you ignorant slug, *Kavanaugh* is a Catholic!

  • Eddy||

    Oops, I meant to say "slut" not slug, my apologies to John and the whole cast of SNL back when it was good.

  • Eddy||

    John, piss up a rope, I checked my prior posts and didn't say the Reps should vote against Judge K or that Trump should withdraw his nomination.

    It did (and does) steam me that Trump rejected Barrett in favor of what was supposedly the "safer" alternative, Judge K. The reason I'm straining and swallowing K is because the alternative is probably some Anthony Kennedy clone acceptable to the Democrats.

    You're close to a real-life Manichean - nuance is unthinkable, if you don't claim you supported Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court since before the death of Methusaleh, you're a squish and you endorse the charges against him.

  • Eddy||

    Now I'll do what I did in another thread and say what it would take for me to oppose Judge K

    (a) I'd have to be convinced he lied about being a rapey rapist in HS.

    (b) I'd have to be convinced that his perjury is somehow worse than the perjury of the sort of judge acceptable to the Dems - who lying promise to support the Constitution and then rape the heck out of it.

    I'm not persuaded on point (a) and I'm certainly not persuaded on point B.

  • Eddy||

    Meanwhile, I've been exchanging a few barbs with one of John's left-wing counterparts.

    The idea that Washington, D. C. is a swamp of crookedness of perjury, and the unempowered citizen simply has to pick through it, not in search of an honest man like Diogenes, but in search of the best option in a contest among dishonest men (and women) - apparently this isn't a partisan enough approach for John and his left-wing doppelgangers.

    No, you not only have to be skeptical about the evidence against "your guy," you have to categorically exclude the possibility that he may have been guilty of anything. And having admitted even in theory the possibility that a member of one team may be guilty of something, then of course your only other option is supporting the other team, since the other team is by definition rightesous and pure.

    Barf.

  • John||

    Kavanaugh isn' t "my guy" you half wit. If it makes you barf to defend an innocent man, I advise you seeing your priest very soon because you have a lot of things to confess.

  • Eddy||

    You know, John, of all the people for whom I have an enduring Christian love, you are perhaps among those I love with least enthusiasm.

    Not having the benefit of having hung out at those particular parties, all I can say about those parties is that we should respect the presumption of innocence against all the guilt-presumers.

    I even go further than this and suggest that it's time we rehabilitate the concept of statutes of limitations (a concept damaged in the wake of the Church abuse scandals).

    Even though technically the Senate could presume any accusation against a nominee true, I am for a common-sense approach by which allegations of wrongdoing (short of murder or genocide) should be (a) brought soon after the alleged wrongdoing and (b) proven with more than the scatterbrained reminiscences of the alleged "victims."

    Is this not enough to cover the case? If the Senate does as I suggest, wouldn't it confirm Judge K pretty quickly?

    And let me note another thing I've observed about some of your posts - you love taking the least charitable interpretation possible of someone else's remarks.

  • Eddy||

    I said I'm not persuaded by the allegations, I said that in any case the allegations themselves aren't as bad as what judges do when they violate their oaths of office.

    Describing the demands on commenters in these sorts of debates, I used the term "you" to describe these commenters, so your conclusion was by "you" I meant "John specifically."

    Given the shortness of the time and space in which we try to compress complex thoughts into the Internet, it would be simplicity itself to pick out some phrase, "misunderstand" it (or feign outrage in any case), and go to town, as opposed to what a non-silly person would do, which would be to ask "what did you mean when you said thus and such, perhaps I didn't understand your shorthand"?

  • Eddy||

    So far, the debate (if I may call it that) between myself and John partakes of some of the characteristics of the agnostic/atheist debate.

    ME: "I'm not convinced Kavanaugh is guilty."

    JOHN: "No, you half-wit fundamentalist, being unconvinced is not enough, you have to *know,* and believe in your heart, that Kavanaugh is as innocent as a lamb!"

  • Eddy||

    Seriously, now that I've said I'm not convinced of the accusations, what more does Kavanaugh expect of me? If he's innocent he has the benefit of a clean conscience, and the benefit of knowing that people who don't know what really happened are still willing to stand up for procedural due process.

    He also would know that there are millions of people who would be convinced of his guilt even if all the accusers acted like Perry Mason characters and break down and admit they're the real rapists.

    (Not that this would happen)

    But if K is as insecure as John, there's nothing I can do to help him (or John).

  • DiegoF||

    Kavanaugh is probably a 'Skins fan. Is that really so much better?

  • DiegoF||

    Well, one bright spot is that the Democrats won't be helping her much. The Republican is asking the questions of a professional trial attorney. The Democrats are just using the opportunity to spew woke boilerplate not particularly relevant to anything, and waste still further of their chance to materially help her in favor of producing videotape of themselves thunderously declaring their support for her.

  • John||

    Even if the Demcorats had a trial attorney, I am not sure how they could help her. She has a story to tell, she is presumably telling it, and that story has some serious flaws. I don't think even the best attorney could do much to rehabilitate her after those flaws are pointed out.

  • Dillinger||

    >>>Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?

    apply Marbury v. Madison properly.

  • NashTiger||

    My first question:

    What is the use of 1,000 letters from Physicians across the country who know bupkis about this being entered into the Recod? Or 100 House of Reps members

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Zero. That was an easy one.

  • Aloysious||

    I know now where I want SMOD to impact...

  • Ken Shultz||

    "All of that is politicized enough, but the Kavanaugh confirmation has fused with a number of other potent cultural currents, especially widespread partisan hatred for Donald Trump, the upcoming midterm elections, and the #MeToo movement."

    Mr. Gillepsie, you're missing some potent currents in your analysis.

    1) Should people should be disqualified from any position of responsibility predicated on unsubstantiated accusations?

    2) To what extent do standards of proof (or lack thereof) extend to the rest of us for what we said and did decades ago--in person, on Facebook, etc?

    3) Should people be disqualified from positions of responsibility today for things they wrote or did years ago that fail various PC tests today?

    The PC wars, standards of proof, intent to purge, thought crime allegations, etc. being indulged on the left today share some obvious parallels with the Red Scare era and the McCarthy hearings. One of the key differences is that, today, we're all on trial--not just some Hollywood people, others in government, etc.

  • Ken Shultz||

    To be accused of racism, sexism, homophobia, etc., today, can be just as devastating to everyday people as it was to the blackballed Hollywood people of the McCarthy era. "Are you now or have you ever been a [sexist]?" The standards of proof seem to be the same, the assumption of guilt seems to be the same, the intent to ostracize people from polite society and destroy their livelihoods seems to be the same--and, yes, the left makes examples of those who publicly question their orthodoxy.

    These hearings aren't about Kavanaugh anymore. They're about whether you should be disqualified from management positions today for having called someone a "fag" when you were in high school. These hearing are about whether that guy who's been busting his hump to get ahead in your company should be forever disqualified from a management position because of something stupid he wrote on Facebook back when Obama was president. The Kavanaugh hearings are about whether we should be bullied into acting as if we're social justice warriors and live in fear that someone from our past might come forward at any time and ruin our lives with mere accusations of having committed some unpardonable thought crime against women, LGBTQI+, African-Americans, etc.

    That's a mighty potent current. It might even be the whole ball game.

  • John||

    Somehow David French always manages to be the pundit on the right with the most offensively stupid take on virtualy any issue. And he didn't disapoint on Kavanaugh. French wrote a whole collumn on how serious this allegation was and how if true it should disqualify him from consideration. According to French, a single drunken grope in high school forever disqualifies a person from positions of authority and outweighs decades of explemarly and ethical behavior. Talk about terrifying nonsense.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's not that the chattering classes are trying to be disingenuous. They really believe that their primary responsibility is to set the standards for acceptable behavior and signal them as clearly as possible. It's just that you can't do that without being disingenuous sometimes.

    Even if you're Jimmy Swaggart, as a preacher, you gotta rail against fornication. They're the new prudes preaching against the sins of sexism, racism, homophobia, etc. They've gotta keep up appearances--especially if they're supposed to be on the right. Maybe he's worried about losing his legitimacy in the new morality.

    There was a time when thinking that the worm would turn on McCarthy seemed ridiculous. Maybe the internet changed everything by making a permanent record of everything we've said--but I wouldn't count on it. The Inquisition, the witch trials, the McCarthy hearings--they all lost their legitimacy and became laughing stocks eventually.

    I wouldn't bet against the same thing happening to the social justice warriors eventually. Someday, if things follow form, we'll laugh at them like we laughed at the John Birch Society.

  • John||

    All things pass. Much more serious and sustained incidents of collective madness in societies than this have eventually ended. And this will end as well. At some point people get tired of being bullied by the fanatics and even the fanatics come to their senses as the weapons they created are turned upon them.

    We are seeing a bit of that here. These allegations are really not much different in kind and in tactics than the ones used to destroy Roy Moore. The difference is that Moore was some evangelical nut from Alabama that no one in Washington liked and Kavanaugh is a Yalie and member in good standing in polite society. The same beltway Republicans who happily went along with the idea that if enough woman accuse a guy of something, he must be guilty and that it is totally okay to destroy someone's carrer over things that happened 30 years ago and were never reported then are now shocked that those same tactics are being used against one of them. It has sobered them up considerably.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Has it really ended in france? Sure, they're not chopping off heads but the french revolution's stench is still very much with us. And that is literally what the left wants here.

  • Ken Shultz||

    If the left doesn't want the American people to react to every new allegation like it's another excuse to purge society of those they deem unacceptable because of their thought crimes, then maybe they should stop trying to use every new accusation as if it's an excellent excuse to purge society of those they deem unacceptable because of their thought crimes.

  • BLPoG||

    This sentence:

    > Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Followed by this sentence:

    > Some of the accusations are credible on their face, though there has been little in the way of concrete corroboration.

    Nick truly is a master of irony.

  • BLPoG||

    This sentence:

    > Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Followed by this sentence:

    > Some of the accusations are credible on their face, though there has been little in the way of concrete corroboration.

    Nick truly is a master of irony.

  • Harvard||

    If only he'd stop fucking Shecky and clear his head he could land that fantasy gig at WaPo.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Yes, it would have to be credible, believable evidence. You know... evidence, not an impassioned speech.

    Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?

    No. Well... yes, strip them of their power by returning to the original structure of the three branches: checks and balances, and term limit the judges.

    Will things ever get back to "normal"?

    Things were never "normal".

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    3 Questions To Ask Yourself While Watching the Kavanaugh/Ford Hearings Today

    In the spirit of full disclosure, not watching. Didn't even know there were hearings today. Did Ford catch the train to get to DC due to her fear of flying?

  • DiegoF||

    The legal analyists on TV, both former prosecutors, say Ford is hitting it out of the park and the Republican is actually helping her with her cross right now.

    I'm not generally impressed with their analysis--they are making Nancy Grace look impartial--but what do you think, trial lawyer HnRers?

  • DiegoF||

    OK, these analysist are just deranged. They are not doing their own credibility any favors. But I do wonder how right everyone on MSNBC is about what they see.

  • John||

    I am not watching it. But the networks always try and gaslight the country by pretending something is going bad for Republicans no matter what the reality.

    Ultimately, I would say any individual person's opinion of her testimony, absent her really stepping on herself, means next to nothing. In a courtroom, you never know what the jury is really thinking. I have seen plenty of witnesses I thought were fabulous only to see the jury pretty much ignore everything they had to say. And have seen witnesses I thought were terrible make all of the diference to a jury. So even if those guys are not trying to gaslight the public, their opinion doesn't mean much. This is one of those times where I would like to see some truely random and honest focus group and hear their opinion.

  • DiegoF||

    Ah that is a good point. For many things, such as elections, putting a "happy" (for your side) spin on the news is a risky strategy. You might make your voters complacent instead of motivating them, for instance.

    But for this, since most people are not watching the whole thing, gaslighting will indeed be very effective. They can say, "Ford stood tall and strong, destroyed everyone! Most credible witness ever to testify for anything! Republicans humiliated! Kavanaugh finished!" and maybe play a few select clips, having primed the public to view them that way.

    So I guess the question is: Do they indeed have enough material for such gaslighting, and Kavanaugh's supporters not have enough "Ford DESTROYED by female DA!!!" material to counter? Because I think this matter will be decided in the court of public opinion, or the news cycle, no? That is how the fence sitting Senators will determine their votes, after all.

  • John||

    I think most people's opinions are going to come down to confirmation bias. You will believe whichever side's spin supports your existing opinion.

    Perhaps I am too optimistic, but I really don't think anyone outside of the hard core Democratic base is going to think this woman's story should mean Kavanaugh not be confirmed much less change their vote in the midterms over it. I think most people man or woman have too much of an innate sense of fairness to do that. They either won't believe her or won't know what to think and just tune it out. This will end up being fodder for activists and fund raisers and not much else no matter which way the Senate goes on his confirmation.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    A few days ago, CNN actually did one of these discussions with a group of regular women. The Fake News talking head clearly went in there expecting all the women to say of COURSE they believed Ford's story.

    Well, her doors were blown right off when in fact it turned out almost exactly the opposite! Almost every woman they invited in clearly indicated that they were disgusted by this entire spectacle. Here's what the Gillespiean morons in the media have completely failed to take into account:

    1) Women understand other women very well, and know just how mean, petty, vindictive, and dishonest many of them can be. And that leads to item 2, which is...

    2) Most adult women have husbands, brothers, and/or sons that they love dearly, and despise the thought of something like this happening to them. This is a big part of the reason why most women are protective of their sons (almost to the point of being ridiculous at times) and are constantly casting a wary, watchful, and suspicious eye on his woman.

  • John||

    My experience with women of all political persuasions is similar to that. I don't think women are going to buy this bullshit, especially not from another middle aged professional white woman. Remember, Anita Hill was black. So, a lot of white women felt the need to believer for fear of being racist. Ford will get no such curtisy.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The Jury in this case are a bunch of senators... soooo... complete retards.

  • John||

    The jury is the voting public. The Senators won't do shit unless they think it will engraciate them with the voters.

  • TuIpa||

    Close John

    ingratiate.

  • John||

    I saw that. Oh well.

  • TuIpa||

    No problem, just helping out.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    But spineless retards, so it's going to come down to what the constituents of vulnerable red-state senators are saying on the Twitters.

  • MasterThief||

    I was listening for a little bit. She doesn't sound genuine. She sounds like an actor spouting typical victim garbage. Her tone and word choice came across as inauthentic.

  • ||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Absolutely. But there is no evidence.

    Her testimony is acted. As a Doctor of Psychology, she is trained to help people get past trauma, but she can't? People who are getting to the truth after years and years tend to be smug, but smug doesn't sell sympathy.

  • JFree||

    This is the weirdest fucking thing I've ever seen. The pols here remind me of the vultures from Jungle Book.

    Every single voter who voted for any of these DeRps really should shoot themselves for what they have inflicted on the rest of us.

  • John||

    What are the Republicans supposed to do beyond let this woman tell her story and then ask her questions concerning its credibility? How exactly would your ideal non Dem Rep act differently?

  • TuIpa||

    You're talking to a sockpuppet for Chipper Morning Badtohispets John.

  • John||

    I know but it is a serious question. A lot of people take the "this just proves the entire Senate are clowns" position. They never explain what differently the Republicans were supposed to do. I love how people blame all this on Trump. Trump appointed a respected circuit judge that the entire Republican membership in the Senate loved and whom there had never been a single question about his ethics. I guess Trump was supposed to magically know this crazy broad was going to make this accusation or somehow is responsible for the Democrats acting this way. There are plenty of things you can blame on Trump if you don't like them. How anyone can blame this idiocy on him is beyond me.

  • TuIpa||

    Here's my take on a different track that would probably have worked.

    Take her allegations SUPER seriously, while simultaneously confirming Kavanaugh and turning the investigation over to local authorities.

    Basically, separate them and explain that while it is a serious allegation, allegations are not enough to stop such an important process.

    But that window has closed.

  • JFree||

    YOU're the one talking about Trump. I haven't mentioned him. YOU have. I'm talking about Congress. Of course you know that - assuming that you can read. Which is obviously an excessive assumption.

    Trump appointed a respected circuit judge that the entire Republican membership in the Senate loved and whom there had never been a single question about his ethics.

    So fucking what? Kavanaugh's a reliable partisan. That's the reason he's being appointed. Not because he offers any judicial philosophy beyond '100% reliable partisan vote on a SC'. Why should any non-DeRp give a shit about a nominee whose only upside is that he is deeply and reliably DeRp?

  • TuIpa||

    "Kavanaugh's a reliable partisan. That's the reason he's being appointed"

    Um no, barely informed sockpuppet, he was a compromise with Kennedy so Kennedy could step down.

  • DiegoF||

    What need has Mr. Baculum for sockpuppets? I never made him for the type.

  • TuIpa||

    He needed it to forward a stupid idea about glyphosate that got him heckled off the board previously.

    And, despitehow you made him, he uses CMB to pretend to be level headed while actually being childishly snarky, while using JFree to act like a petulant bitch.

    If you never made him for it, you haven't been paying attention.

  • DiegoF||

    Entirely plausible. I never pay attention.

    My stupid idea for glyphosate is to douche with it to keep stuff from starting growing up in there.

  • JFree||

    I'm not a sockpuppet of anything. Yeesh. Tulpa is just a projectile vomiter who apparently got that in his head yesterday and I'm hardly gonna clean up his vomit.

  • TuIpa||

    You're busted, let it go.

  • John||

    Why should any non-DeRp give a shit about a nominee whose only upside is that he is deeply and reliably DeRp?

    Because anyone should give a shit about someone being slandered and seeing their career and reputation ruined by lies. You don't care because all you care about is his politics. You don't like them, so you don't care that his carreer is ruined by lies. Yet, it is everyone else who is the partisan.

    The fact that you believe his holding judicial opinions you don't like is somehow relevent to this issue shows how fucking stupid and partisan you are.

  • JFree||

    Because anyone should give a shit about someone being slandered and seeing their career and reputation ruined by lies.

    So let me get this straight:

    You've made a point in this thread of saying you're not listening to anything in this hearing.
    But it's obviously slander.
    And you're not really partisan.
    And what's the problem with partisans anyway.
    And why should anything change?

    DeRpity DeRpity DeRpity DeRp

  • TuIpa||

    You didn't get it straight, sock who can't click on a working link properly.

  • JFree||

    Well hey - here's the scientific study about glyphosate and gut bacteria of bees

    Now - start your projectile vomiting. I'm sure it won't be as green as Linda Blair's but perhaps - orange?

  • JFree||

    The last thing I'm interested in is explaining how the DeRps could do a better job here. I think they all need to be fired.

    How exactly would your ideal non Dem Rep act differently?

    Well they would be less likely to be lawyers.

  • John||

    That is not answering my question. And if you are not interested in explaining how this should be done differently, then shut the fuck up about how you want different people in there. The whole point of replacing them is to get people who act differently. Well okay, what do you want?

    You really don't seem to know what you want or have any idea how things should be run. You just want to mindlessly bitch.

  • JFree||

    Different people in those seats would by definition do their duty differently. I don't give a FUCK about reassuring YOU that doing that differently would also support your partisanship. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM JOHN because you see all possibility of change as a threat to your poisonous partisanship.

  • TuIpa||

    ^the guy who makes a fool of himself bitching about a working link thinks other people are the problem.

    LOL

  • John||

    Different people in those seats would by definition do their duty differently.

    Sure and you have no idea what that would mean or what different people you would want. That makes you a moron who is so stupid that can't even form a wrong opinion much less a correct one.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Most of us, John included, want an originalist on the court somthe constitution is interpreted based on it's actual language. The only way to do that currently is through republican nominees. As anything a democrat appoint will be a communist traitor, just like all the communist traitors currently on the court.

    If you don't like republican nominees, what is your alternative?

  • JFree||

    I don't mind GOP nominees. I would have voted to confirm Gorsuch. That said - my reason for confirming him would not have been because of his supposed principles but because his background was not the grindingly crappy norm now of Catholic/Jewish - went to Ivy - worked in DC - then to DC Court of Appeals.

    I'll take someone who's actually worked defending privacy and individual rights against govt overreach than someone who checks some 'originalist' box by spending their career on that inbred track.

  • JeffreyL||

    1) Sure. Present actual evidence.

    2) Yes. Scorched earth when the next democrat is nominated. That will lead to both parties understanding that this is not appropriate.

    3) Not likely in the next decade. Potentially further out. Scorched earth takes time.

  • JeffreyL||

    Understand. I fully understand how bad this is. However, instead of rational, lets reduce the power of the judiciary to legislate from the bench, etc etc etc. (the position of libertarians). This is I believe what will actually happen.

  • Cyto||

    Ok, she said something big for her credibility.

    She said she ran into Judge about 6-8 weeks after the event occurred. In that story she said they had known each other for about 2 years and had seen each other "not often, but friendly" over that period.

    That seems to be an area to delve deeper.

    Because "two guys I only met once" 35 years later is quite probably mixed up in your noodle.

    But she knew at least one of them, a little. Not well, but familiar. That is a big difference. That really ups the credibility of her claim.

  • Cyto||

    Yet her BFF who she says was at the party tells us that she never met the guy. Hmmm....

    If they were really trying to get at the truth, they would characterize that relationship better. Why Judge? How did they know each other for a couple of years, when she was 15. That means they first met when she was 12 or 13. And he was a 15 year old high school kid. Why did she remember specifically that she was expecting to see him at the party? She's leaving a lot out about that relationship and nobody seems to notice that it might be a key to understanding the dynamic at work.

    She also mentions that when she ran into him he was at work. She approached him and said "Hi". She characterized him as saying "hi" but not being his normal friendly self and looking nervous or sick.

    You can completely discount the characterization some 35 years later - heck, you coulda done that the next day. But she went up to him to say "Hi". A friendly "hi", not "WFT you GD rapist?!" type of "hi". Which is interesting given that she characterizes this moment as the reason for every problem in her life since.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I thought I had removed all the NPR stations from my radio, so I flipped through and accidentally stumbled upon it. That's how I knew the testimony was happening. In breathless fascination, the two NPR correspondents discussed an 'incredible" account of how she wanted two front doors on her house because of the terrible trauma, PTSD and claustrophobia she suffered as the result of the gang rapes and devil worshiping that took place in the basement of the school...

    We've gone fucking nuts.

  • John||

    The left certainly has. They will literally believe anything if the party tells them to believe it.

  • ||

    the two NPR correspondents discussed an 'incredible" account of how she wanted two front doors on her house because of the terrible trauma

    Of course, once she had the two front doors, it became convenient to then rent out that other section of the house for a little extra income.

  • damikesc||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Testimony? At this point, no. The Dems have poisoned the well too badly.

    Evidence? Absolutely. If there is any actual proof he did any of this stuff, I'd believe it. Now, it would have to show he DID something, not just "Well, his friends were drunks" or "He was a drunk".

    Is there any way to depoliticize the selection of Supreme Court justices?

    No hearings at all. Don't even mention the name. Just look at their records. Or, if hearings MUST happen, no cameras at all.

    Will things ever get back to "normal"?

    There's always Republicans willing to give up everything to make Democrats like them, so maybe.

  • TuIpa||

    Bitch is crazy.

    / Hearing

  • CDRSchafer||

    Q: Would the country be better off if every Senate Democrat was boiled in oil and fed to rats?

    A: Yes. Yes it would.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    This is why progressives should be removed from this country. They are an ongoing threat to our freedom and our lives.

  • TuIpa||

    "we have decades of his writings and provable behavior to look at, but we need to decide this based on the testimony of a single witness about a disputed incident'

    If that makes sense to you, swallow a shotgun.

  • John||

    Like I explain above, whether someone gets the benefit of the doubt depends on the person and the doubt involved. If this will Bill Clinton and some woman was claimng he groped her and there was some corroborating evidence like them being seen going into an office alone and her leaving looking disheveled and upset, you probably don't give Bubba much benefit of the doubt. But this isn't Bill Clinton. This is a guy who has a totally spotless public record and has dozens of women who work with and for him for years all saying what a great guy he is. And we have a clearly damaged and nutty witness claiming he did something 30 years ago without any evidence beyond her word.

    It is really that simple.

  • Cyto||

    This was my initial take as well. But clearly the Dems have won the day on that front.

    A 30+ year adult life and career are irrelevant. The only thing that is relevant is what happened in a 10 minute window in high school with no witnesses and no corroboration and no contemporaneous accounts. Everyone is now in 100% agreement on that point.

    These people be crazy, even if it happened exactly as she describes.

  • TuIpa||

    I think there is still a small hypothetical chance that the R's feel this way and are simply covering themselves with this hearing, but I don't actually believe that, it definitely looks like they have accepted the Dems position on this and are playing defense.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Instead of cowering from these progtards, they should be beaten with canes when they dare dispute conservatives or libertarians. Which is only natural, as progressives are lower order of life, on the order of analids, or crab people.

  • John||

    They are so eager to virtue signal their status in the enlightened class they allow it to make them insane. Making the common sense point of how a single incident in high school that was never reported to the police and whatever damage it did to the victim was not important enough for her to ever tell anyone about it or keep her from getting a PHD and a cush job as a college professor should not undo an otherwise spotless and distinguished career in the law does not allow the speaker to virtue signal about the horrors of sexual assault and puts that person at risk of being thrown out of polite society.

    The same thing happened in the Roy Moore case. The idea that teenage girls might now exactly what they are doing sexually and happen to like going out with older men, something that has been true since the dawn of time, was something that was totally beyond the pale for elite society. Instead, everyone had to pretend that a 15 year old girl is no different from an 8 year old girl lest they be accused of being a dreaded pedophile.

    Elite society in this country has gone insane.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    She is part of elite society too.

    She keeps referencing her knowledge of memory.

    She is the scariest kind of elitist- a liar and good at covering it up.

  • DiegoF||

    DA did a good number on Ford's crippling fear of flying. (Which she supposedly needed all the strength of her friends to overcome this time.) Turns out she's been flying all over the place constantly. Even listed travel as one of her hobbies. Costa Rica, Hawaii (most isolated place on Earth), even the South Pacific. (Seconds before, the DA had "accused" her of having flown to Australia; she had to clarify that she worked in San Francisco for an Australia-based employer. "I've never been to Australia. I don't think I could make it that far," she said. But apparently one of her favorite pleasures is flying to the South Pacific for fun. If the DA's "mistake" was deliberate bait it was brilliant.)

    The DA did not pick at it, but she also declares "oceanography" to be one of her hobbies, and that she enjoys that type of tourism I believe. So she likes going out on a tiny boat into the middle of the ocean. This from a woman who is so petrified of having no escape from a situation she has to have a second front door on her own house.

  • Cyto||

    Wow. I guess I shoulda hung in there a little longer.

    But in Ford's defense... crazy gonna crazy the way crazy wants to crazy. Crazy doesn't crazy in a logical way.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Yeah, no fair-minded person on earth is going to consider this lowlife scumbagetta's bullshit to be believable.

    Barring some kind of real bombshell, Kavanaugh is going to be confirmed.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    If Kavanaugh is not confirmed, expect a bloodbath next primary season.

  • John||

    The way to cross examin someone is to read back their own words to them and let them hang themselves. If that woman knows what she is doing, and I imagine she does, she should just be calming reading back known statements Ford has made and asking Ford to confirm that is what she said.

  • geo1113||

    That is why she removed her social media accounts.

  • DiegoF||

    I wanna know how she got those yearbooks taken down!

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The same way she has no idea who paid for the polygraphs, she considers polygraphs a truth or lie telling detector, and she cannot remember much when its not a prepared statement.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    All the accusers should be bound by the Lasso of Hestia.

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    That would be the most credible thing that has happened so far.

  • DiegoF||

    That's exactly what she's doing! Very gentle and friendly too of course; no ball-busting battleaxe Amazon act like you see with television-drama ADAs.

  • DiegoF||

    I think Blumenthal is my favorite Senator. I smile just looking at him and his antics. (I'd say he's definitely my favorite Senator, except that I'm not sure that he legally qualifies as a Senator because I don't know if it is technically Constitutional for a member of his species.)

  • MikeyParks||

    This piece assumes a dramatic false equivalency between the Right and the Left. The accusations lobbed at Clinton came from women whose assertions were backed by hard evidence. These women were marginalized by the Dems and the Dem-owned MSM. Their claims were ignored. The Right has never been responsible for such outright lying and false accusations against the Left (remember it was Hillary who generated the "birther" claims against Obama.) The Right voted yes on RBG, and the two other Leftist woman on the high court. That the Left started the mud slinging is self evident.

  • mamabug||

    Having listened to the opening statement before I realized what a waste of time this was, I am convinced of a few things:

    1. The PR flak who wrote her opening statement is really, really good at his/her job.

    2. Regardless of whether things happened like she said, she definitely had some trauma, she has a little girl voice.

    3. If she truly, sincerely believes this is what happened to her and had zero intention of actually coming forward, then Diane Feinstein should be castigated by every woman, group or movement that claims to support survivors of rape and sexual assault.

    4. I'm willing to believe that she believes this happened. But there are too many plausible explanations ranging from 'completely true' to 'confused separate events and people' to 'retconned some drunken semi-consensual fumbling into a major trauma under peer pressure.' The last one is something nobody has really discussed. I went to a very, very feminist college about the same time period. The messaging being sent to women was very strong on recognizing abuse, sexual assault/harrassment, etc. At one point, I'd convinced myself that my freshman year boyfriend was emotionally abusive. He wasn't. He was just a sucky boyfriend. It is amazing what you can convince yourself of when the people around you keep preaching that every woman is a victim of the patriarchy and reward you for admitting your own victimhood.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    She lied about being afraid of flying. She changed her story even today. Why, at this point, shouldn't we assume she's willing to lie about anything?

  • mamabug||

    I am willing to believe she believes it happened. That's about as much credibility as I'm willing to put into her statement.

  • DiegoF||

    But that will be enough for those not interested in getting from that point to "credible." And most people are lazy. This is not good for Kavanaugh.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Kavanaugh will be fine.

  • chipper me timbers||

    'retconned some drunken semi-consensual fumbling into a major trauma under peer pressure.'

    Thank god it's a woman who said this is a possibility. It's so obviously true that this happens sometimes but if a man says it he's the devil.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Ask any two witnesses of or participants in any event whatsoever, much less a heated one or one that took place a long time again, and they will provide starkly different, even contradictory, recollections of what happened, even when truing to be 100% truthful. Factor in booze, youth, the time gap, and politics. Even if she is attempting to be honest, it's foolish to say her description is the accurate or best interpretation of events in the absence of corroborating evidence.

  • Alcibiades||

    Ford comes across as damaged goods and emotionally manipulaive.
    Not in the least credible to me.

  • Alcibiades||

    Just in, individuals that actually were present:

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/09/
    just-in-two-men-who-believe-they-had-encounter-
    with-christine-ford-are-credible-their-story-and-
    details-largely-match-up/

  • DiegoF||

    If Kavanaugh loses this vote--and I believe he will--this will certainly make it open season for #BelieveHer. Because if this manages to be sold as, "See? It turns out she was telling the truth the whole time," then #BelieveHer will know they can do anything. Anything said by anyone will be true, full stop. You ain't seen nothing yet.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Kavanaugh is getting confirmed.

    This lady is not holding up well to non-prepared questioning.

  • LeaveTrumpAloneLiberal-tarian||

    Ok, honest, I do ask myself whether it's a good idea to deny a 50 yo a job based upon something that he did when he was 17, but the libs on this board have to admit that the really great thing about the Republican Party is how they stick up for the average joes in life— like Brett Kavanaugh— over elitist profs from California. Come on, Tony, even you would admit that.

  • CLM1227||

    Presumption of innocence, not guilt.

    That is it.

    It has nothing to do with putting a rape victim on trial, but about a process to protect the wrongly accused.

    If you really want justice, you can't wait like this.

    She could be telling the truth, she could not. I prefer the standard we have. If something needs to change to make it easier for rape victims to come forward immediately, we can have that discussion, but to remove presumption of innocence and statute of limitations to cater to the accuser's preferred timetable is not the answer.

  • John||

    The didn't create statutes of limitation because the legilstatures and courts wanted to let guilty people go free. They created them because after the passage of enough time it is not only impossible to prove the case in many instances it is more importantly impossible for the accused to defend himself. If this accusation had been made within a reasonable time, Kavanaugh would have had all kinds of opportunity to prove himself innocent. People would still remember the night in question and would be able to contradict his accusor if she was in fact lying. But 30 years later that is virtually impossible.

    The message we should be sending to women who are the victims of sexual assault and indeed to anyone who is a victim of a crime is to report the incident within a reasonable time. Otherwise, it will be impossible for society and the law to give you any justice against the perpetrator.

  • DiegoF||

    I find the recent anti-SOL hysteria to be extremely alarming and concerning. More noise should be made over it. But of course in terms of sense and caution and proper liberal values prevailing, even among "libertarian" politicians, it's pretty much the puppy-eating bill.

    But libertarian journalists, at least, should be making more noise about it.

  • CLM1227||

    Exactly.

  • Ben_||

    If you make a 30 second mistake when you're 17 and no one is hurt, apparently you should just commit suicide. That's the message of today's hearing.

    And if you didn't make such a mistake, you might as well have. Because all it takes is for one woman to say you did and she is automatically believed.

    The left seems to want to start a civil war in the US. That would be bad. But every day they make war seem a little better compared to the alternatives they have to offer.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Even if Kavanaugh is not guilty, some other man is, for this or for some other crime against a woman. That alone is sufficient to hold him accountable, as he is a member of the elite cisheterowhitepayriarchy.
    #timesup

  • John||

    It shows the overall sickness and intellectual bankruptcy of our elites. They see "character" as some kind of cartoon that is either good or bad.

  • DFG||

    I've been NeverTrump from day 1, but after this shit-show I can more clearly see why people like him. To the Dems this is a war and absolutely everything is justified in its prosecution. Trump takes the same approach to anyone who opposes him. He almost levels the playing field.

  • Stephen Lathrop||

    It's lunch break in the testimony. So far, all there is to say is that if Ford is acting, Meryl Streep needs to get in touch to find out how to do it. Of course there is a bit of friction; the D senators can't resist spouting previously-prepared remarks. They should just yield their time and get out of the way.

    The Rs need a hard takedown before testimony ends, or Kavanaugh is toast. Either that, or the Rs will court political catastrophe, if they put Kavanaugh on the court. And if they do, it's likely to turn out just a seat holder for a very young, very liberal D, to be seated after Kavanaugh's impeachment.

    The political voltage from Ford's testimony is notably above the Anita Hill standard. Hard to imagine there won't be at least two or three Rs who get that, and vote no—if there even is a vote.

    Finding themselves in a pickle, most Rs will probably ask in private for Collins, Murkowski, and Flake to vote no, and then bemoan their treachery in public, relieved to be off the hook. Absent some shocker after lunch, I expect Kavanaugh's nomination to be withdrawn shortly.

    Right wingers should have demanded an FBI investigation, if for no other reason than to protect themselves.

    Of course, none of this means the right won't store up even more resentments, and howl about how future unsupportable nominees are getting "Kavanaughed."

  • DiegoF||

    You sound deranged, but you are correct that Mitchell needs to bring this all home in order for this not to have been a significant win for the Democrats.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The lady from Arizona is "investigating" and Democrats refuse to yield their time her like the Republicans are doing.

    Very telling of the charade that is unfolding.

  • Tony||

    Funny, I thought Meryl would be good to play her in the TV movie.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    See the attorneys cover for her about the polygraph?

    She does not know who paid for it or why he was selected.

    She reads from a prepared statement okay enough. Asked about details and she cannot remember.

    I laughed when she mentioned about marital problems over a two front door remodel. Why would someone consider two front doors a deterrent to you going to someone else's home and being held down by 4 2 boys?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    *strike "4"

  • loveconstitution1789||

    *strike "4"

  • Dillinger||

    you were out 5 strikes ago.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Fucking Reason.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Wouldn't two front doors just allow more potential assailants to enter your home?

  • DiegoF||

    The (especially shrill) Hawaiian Senator is incensed that the prosecutor has been asking questions of the witness.

    Her rant also includes Trump's healthcare policy.

  • DiegoF||

    So far I've seen several conservative commentators say this hearing has been bad for Kavanaugh. None good.

    Many have said the format is horrible. I concur.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    The very existence of the hearing is bad for Kavanaugh. If Republicans were serious about getting him on the Court, they would have dismissed the allegation as untimely and held the vote last week.

  • DiegoF||

  • Alcibiades||

    The format is fucking pathetic.

  • Oli||

    It's strange. I hear the accusers and think "they sound credible". I hear Kavanaugh and think the same.

    Then I read this:
    "One thing in particular we were sad about, one of our good — one of our good female friends, who we would admire and went to dances with had her name used on the yearbook page with the term alumnus. That yearbook reference was clumsily intended to show affection and that she was one of us. But in this circus, the media has interpreted the term was related to sex. It was not related to sex."

    ..and think he's full of shit.

  • Carolynp||

    Let's stick to evidence, shall we? We're not psychics, and can't have any clue what his freaking high school yearbook was about. Was the guy immature in high school? Maybe. Was he a rapist? All of the objective evidence says no. One lone woman says yes. I know a guy who thinks 9/11 was orchestrated by aliens, and I'm certain he could pass a polygraph, doesn't make it true.

  • DFG||

    You left out question #4:

    "Why the fuck would anyone ever subject themselves to this bullshit lynching process, even for a lifetime appointment?"

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    That is by far and away the best outcome here.

    The insane benefits of working for the federal government will now be tempered by the possibility of having your life destroyed.

    Awesome.

  • zombietimeshare||

    "Some of the accusations are credible on their face"

    Yeah, she spelled his name correctly—after that things go downhill.

  • Mike Laursen||

    I've had so many people telling me what and whom I should believe that I have to keep reminding myself that I'm an independent, who is neither a fan of the Republicans nor the Democrats. As a non-partisan, there's no reason I must hold any beliefs about what happened. As a non-partisan, I can follow the whole thing impartially.

  • Carolynp||

    Actually, while I'm horrified at the behavior on parade, I'm overjoyed that Kavanaugh will be a justice with a unique perspective on due process and mob justice.

  • XM||

    "If you were really innocent, then you would agree to a FBI investigation to be EXTRA sure, even though the witnesses made legally binding statements that support your position."

    That seems to be the democrat's position in this hearing. Is it particularly libertarian to agree to a investigation as a way to demonstrate one's commitment to his or her innocence? What would they say the police and prosecutors can be pressured to open an investigation, even wen all the allegations are demonstrably groundless and do not call for criminal charges or investigation?

    45% of the rape accusations do not actually reach trial. The woman's courage in telling her story becomes a moot point when there's nothing of substance to back up her accusation. Fair minded prosecutors won't try to put a man in jail for 20 years when every single witness available contradicts the narrative. We have to make an exception for BK because....?

  • Robert Crim||

    I watched the entire hearing. Maybe no one else was listening all that carefully, but I was.

    Dr. Ford's testimony is compelling, and it was clear to me that she had suffered some kind of trauma earlier in her life manifesting itself in clearly observable PTSD.

    Judge Kavanaugh did not do as good a job. One of the first things they teach police officers in witness school is NEVER to quibble with the examiner. Judge Kavanaugh either never attended that class (he is, after all, an APPELLATE judge) or let his own emotional state get the better of him. As a result, he did come over at times for being evasive, and that often translates into want of credibility in the eyes of a juror.

    The problem for Dr. Ford, however, is that all of the quibbling was over completely sidereal issues: Should we stop everything to have an FBI investigation? What was the real secret meaning of the "flatulence" codes in his yearbook? Didn't you really run "rape chains" against a woman two years your senior who attended a public high school in another town? The Democrats almost seem to have forgotten Dr. Ford.

    What this all then will boil down to is the records that we have: The calendar, any employment record on Mark Judge, the statements from the alleged witnesses who claim they were NOT there, &c. Dr. Ford is going to lose this one not because she must be lying but because she simply has nothing else right now to back her up....

  • Robert Crim||

    ...Under federal law, a single witness, if believed, IS sufficient to sustain a criminal conviction; but, here, the balance isn't even close. Dr. Ford has NO ONE....

    Furthermore, anyone here familiar with Nathaniel Branden's work on repressed memories knows that projection and substitution as well as conflating of such memories is COMMON in PTSD cases. The victim simply butts two past experiences in her mind together, and she thereafter is absolutely positive the conflation is real. That makes such a person perhaps the MOST dangerous witness against an accused precisely because she genuinely BELIEVES that she's telling the truth, and only by showing proof positive that her memories are deficient can her certainty be shaken.

    If anything of a positive nature emerges from this experience, it must be that women subjected to such attacks MUST come forward right away and not wait 30-40 years to present their claims. To be sure, I'm going to hear all of the usual excuses on why women don't do that in sex-assault cases, but to adopt any different standard simply makes confirmation or rebuttal of these claims legally impossible. I have known women who have been attacked; I have known women who have made it up; and, in the absence of anything further, what I now have seen is a woman genuinely traumatized into making it up.

    SOMEONE did attack Dr. Ford. But, there's simply NO support for her claim it was Brett Kavanaugh....

  • Robert Crim||

    Thirty-six years after the fact, her protestations of certainty simply don't make up for that.

  • Stephen Lathrop||

    So, the after-lunch shocker was delivered. What a spectacle. Never thought to see a SCOTUS nominee going full-demagogue—still less, did I expect to see him get advantage from doing it. But that seems to be what happened.

  • Mark Nosuchinsky MaKovy||

    It's quite similar to Idiots breaking Rocks in a Boxing Match.

    Go argue over whether or not the grass is green in the fucking Old World.

    Once again, The Left are Wrong with the Right being so Obviously Right.

    Happy Birthday, EvE!!3!!

  • BillyG||

    Is there any evidence or testimony that would change your mind about Kavanaugh?

    Evidence putting the two in the same place at the same time. Evidence she knew him before the alleged incident (and so her eye witness identification would then be credible). Some 3rd party testimony, tangible evidence, or testable information that's not currently public (e.g. couldn't be gleaned from Judge's biography).

    So far, nothing has been provided beyond an accusation.

  • AlbedoAtoned||

    Here's a good question. If all it takes to disqualify somebody is that somebody make an unfalsifiable accusation with no evidence to back it up. Doesn't that make it impossible to then find a qualified candidate?

    If the process to hire a SCOTUS member has become so weaponized, that all it takes is for somebody to accuse you of a crime they cannot prove, yet you cannot disprove. Then all you end up with is a scenario where no matter who is nominated, somebody could dig up the same kind of dirt on them. And it's not just the left that will use it. The right will undoubtedly use it as well when given the chance.

    And also, is this really where we want to be going as a country? Where people are encouraged to and rewarded for making unfalsifiable accusations in order to get what they want, at the cost of somebody's reputation? Isn't this one of the things people have been fighting against colleges about? That with a single accusation you can have your lives ruined.

    I get that the SCOTUS is a bigger thing than college, but that's never been a reason to rid oneself of their principles in the past. I realize that who gets in is a big deal and that can be a reason why somebody might make somebody not want them there. But whatever ideas one has about saving the country by doing this, just stop and think for a second, and realize that weaponizing the process will not work out well. Not in the short run and hell, not in the long run.

  • AlbedoAtoned||

    And people saying "it's a job interview" are not quite being honest here. We know what people don't want him in, and it isn't because he might have raped somebody as a teenager. For the same reasons people say that this is such an important job that we have to make sure he is of the best character possible, is the same reason we must look at the those making and pushing the accusations and see if there are any ulterior motives at play.

    Obviously if there is actual evidence to show that plays a much bigger importance, but in this case it is pretty obvious that politics is the reason why these women are speaking up, politics is why one side of the political spectrum was not only against this guy before but after the accusations. People don't normally run out to ruin somebody's life over a job interview.

    Before the accusations came out, it's not like I was rooting for him or against him. I don't agree with him on everything, but he's also not the worst candidate Trump could have nominated. In all honesty, what bothers me is that so little attention was placed on his actual policies good or bad, and before the accusations, most of what people talked about were things that they got wrong about him.

  • AlbedoAtoned||

    The left kept spreading lies about his policies and still do to this day. But I also know that if the tables were turned the right would be doing the same thing. I've lived long enough to see both sides do this kind of thing and I can tell it is only going to get worse. But regardless of his policies, I have no real opinion on his private life. I don't know the guy, and if anybody thinks they can know somebody based on what they see on tv, hoo boy.

    I certainly don't know what happened 35 years ago. If he is guilty of the things he has been accused of or not, that is practically impossible to know for sure. What I do know is that when it comes to accusations, the burden of proof is on the accuser. Even if one accepts a lower standard in regards to what is needed for somebody to be considered "guilty", the general idea should still be that there is evidence. Right now there is none. The accuser wants us to believe her with no evidence. The left wants us to believe her with no evidence, and Reason wants us to believe her with no evidence.

    But just as I don't know Kavanaugh, I don't know Ford. I don't know any of the other women either. Maybe I would be more inclined to believe them if I knew them and thought they were trustworthy, or maybe I would be more inclined to believe them if I knew Kavanaugh and thought he wasn't trustworthy.

  • AlbedoAtoned||

    But the fact of the matter is because I know none of the parties involved I have no real background knowledge to make a decision, not without evidence. With evidence we could know if he was more or less likely to be innocent. It might not be enough to be absolutely sure, but at the very least there would be some backing to our beliefs.

    Without evidence, we can only go by our biases. As I mentioned I don't know either the accusers or the accused so what biases would I have to work with other than political. But that makes me wretch, the thought that I would decide somebody's innocence or guilt based on whether they had a D or an R by their name.

    As a libertarian I consider myself past that. Which is why it saddens me when Reason asks me questions such as "what evidence would make me believe Ford" as if there has been any such evidence. Am I supposed to believe her because she is a democrat? Am I supposed to distrust Kavanaugh because he's a republican?

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online