February 1, 2017

The morning after: Why did I do that last night — not blog about Neil Gorsuch?

I'm asking myself that question in the cold dark of pre-dawn. All I wrote last night was "UPDATE: Gorsuch." Not even an exclamation point after "Gorsuch."

But this is good. Talk about normalizing Trump! Trump named someone on his pre-vetted list, just as he said he would do. The man, by all observable indicia, appears perfectly appropriate, including the humble demeanor.*

Trump looked and sounded very presidential in the classic East Room setting. Those who want immediately to trash anything Trump does were invited to look like fools.

I was watching CNN, and the first (and only) attacks I heard were about Gorsuch's opposition to assisted suicide. I laughed. The Trump antagonists are going to rage about the value of suicide?!

We're supposed to get outraged because Gorsuch is against suicide? The Trump-haters think they can rally us with our enthusiasm for suicide?! Maybe they think they can. After all, younger folks may hanker for euthanizing us baby boomers, and arguments about suicide resemble arguments about abortion. Knock yourself out, Gorsuch opponents, you crazy nuts.
_____________________________

* If I had live-blogged my every thought last night, I would have dinged him for wearing a plaid tie and wiping his nose a few times and turning the pages of his written speech with undue amplitude. I'd have complained about his incantation of all the usual pieties,** but that wasn't enough to get me up out of my comfy TV-watching chair last night. Perhaps Trump planned it that way. Make it a prime-time TV show and people will be deactivated in their comfy chairs. They'll watch and feel that Gorsuch is a very fine man. Look at his education credentials. Clerked for Whizzer White and Anthony Kennedy. And doesn't his wife look like my high school teacher in that white blouse and a-line skirt? Zzzzz.
_____________________________

** "'Pieties' — is that not a word?" I ask the room as Blogger impugns it as a typo. Before looking it up and ensuring that it is indeed a word — it is — I'm distracted by its silliness — "pie ties," just as I'm writing about the man's tie. I'm contemplating the American slapstick/protest history of pies in the face of dignified tie-wearing men....





... it's so perfectly the opposite of pieties. But the dignified men of the present are well-defended nowadays, and I haven't seen a classic pie-in-the-face protest in a long time. The one in those 2 pictures is a mayor deliberately taking a pie-in-the-face challenge.***

_____________________________

*** The answer to the old question Can a footnote have a footnote? is: Yes!

69 comments:

David Begley said...

Perfect point by Althouse. I'm outraged - completely outraged - at Gorsuch's plaid tie and his opposition to assisted suicide. I'm so outraged that I will organize a tiny number of Hillary sore losers and conduct a march in pussy hats. I will then grind the Senate to a halt over the nomination of this extremist.

The Dems have reached outrage overload. The GOP needs to step on their throats and use the nuke option on the Gorsuch nomination. The Dems are a minority party of the coastal elites.

exhelodrvr1 said...

This is judo - Trump is using the "outrage" tendencies of the left to devastating effect. Surely some of them realize that by now, but they have built up so much momentum in use of those tactics that, at least so far, they can't stop themselves.

zipity said...

Hypothetical but extremely likely conversation about SCOTUS nomination:

Liberal: They didn't allow a hearing/vote for Obama's nominee, so why should we have one for Trump's?

Conservative: So, this is basically payback then?

Liberal: You bet.

Conservative: So you are okay with the concept of "payback"..?

Liberal: Sure am.

Conservative: Good. Because you will be getting 4 to 8 years of payback. Good and hard.

Liberal: *blink* *blink*

Lewis Wetzel said...

Althouse:
"We're supposed to get outraged because Gorsuch is against suicide? The Trump-haters think they can rally us with our enthusiasm for suicide?!"

Yes. Democrats take the positions that there is not enough suicide in America, not enough abortions, too few people on public assistance, and not enough race and sex discrimination.

rhhardin said...

Somebody nailed the governor of Ohio with a pie and wound up in prison.

Not even clown prison.

Or mime prison, for that matter.

Danno said...

The progs should welcome someone that is against suicide. Many of these idiots are getting so outraged and depressed, suicide may be in their future.

Meade said...

"After all, younger folks may hanker for euthanizing us baby boomers, and arguments about suicide resemble arguments about abortion. Knock yourself out, Gorsuch opponents, you crazy nuts. "

Oh yes please — bring back discussion of the Death Panels!

rhhardin said...

You want piëties.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Unrelated: You seem to be blogging with notable vigor and good cheer lately, Professor, and I've really enjoyed your recent posts. Thanks!

bwebster said...

My best guesses at this point:

1) The Senate Dems will do their best to throw red meat to their base by pointing to the Hobby Lobby case. Expect lots of concern over stare decisis and Roe v Wade (though, as Tucker Carlson touched on last night, the Left feels that stare decisis doesn't apply to decisions they don't like, like Citizens United). Also, "Garland's stolen seat."

2) Nevertheless, polls will start to show a growing weariness on the part of independents for the Left's outrage about everything. At some point, the Senate Dem leadership will quietly signal to the 2018 red-state Senators that they're free to shake their heads sadly and yet vote for confirmation.

3) The real nasty fireworks will be after the next resignation/death, because Trump's pick will truly shift the SCOTUS balance. However, if that's before the 2018 elections and if the economy has taken off by then, the Dems will truly be caught between Scylla and Charybdis.

rehajm said...

Many of these idiots are getting so outraged and depressed, suicide may be in their future.

They can't even bring themselves to follow through on their threats to move to beautiful places like Canada or New Zealand. Suicide is not in their future, but talking about it sure is. Isn't talking about suicide a cry for attention? There's so few Democratic leaders nowadays, perhaps cries of attention are warranted...

It really is shocking how few Democrats are left. Warren and Schumer look so haggard 10 days in.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

rhhardin said...
Somebody nailed the governor of Ohio with a pie and wound up in prison.

Not even clown prison.


Wikipedia: Steve Conliff

Acquitted, apparently; possibly you're talking about a different guy?

He is chiefly remembered for throwing a banana cream pie at James A. Rhodes, the governor of Ohio, in 1977, at the opening of the Ohio State Fair in Columbus. Conliff and others protested against the governor in part for Rhodes’ direct involvement and use of violence against anti-Vietnam war protestors at Kent State University in May 1970. By ordering the Ohio National Guard on to the campus at Kent with live ammunition, and by comments made to the public on May 3, 1970, Rhodes approved the infamous Kent State Shootings, which took place on May 4, 1970. Conliff was later acquitted of charges of assault on the governor, as sequential and clear photographs showed the airborne pie nearly completely missing the back of the governor’s head.

surfed said...

He looks like a nice guy plaid tie be damned.

AReasonableMan said...

If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state.

Tank said...

A footnote to a footnote !!!!

Derbyshiresq!

Probably not what you were looking for.

Marc Puckett said...

Sebastian, in the other thread, alluded to the prospect of Al Franken and John Finnis at Judge Gorsuch's confirmation hearing (G. studied with Finnis at Oxford?)-- just wait until a certain claque of opponents pick up on that connexion. He'll be made out to be far worse than Antonin Scalia.

rehajm said...

The leftie talking point will be to point out the seat was stolen from Democrats, therefore any obstruction is Republicans fault. I can't predict if they allow Cloture or not.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Where not to use a footnote.

rhhardin said...

Acquitted, apparently; possibly you're talking about a different guy?

That's the guy but I remembered he went to prison.

Bob Boyd said...

Somehow a plaid tie and opposition to suicide seem contradictory.

Laslo Spatula said...

I would very surprised if David Foster Wallace never employed a footnote to a footnote.

I am Laslo.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger AReasonableMan said...
If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state.

Or by God.
But what the hemlock types want is for society to be complicit in a person's suicide. The number of people who want to die and are physically unable to off themselves is tiny.

traditionalguy said...

Gorsuch is a guy from Central Casting. He is a perfect Justice. And the MSM are congratulating the pick...as if the Dims are irrelevant weirdos with nothing important to say. Are they protecting them from themselves?

Let's go for 3 more Justices like Gorsuch.

rhhardin said...

French philosophy, I think Blanchot, probably in _The Space of Literature_, took the possibility of suicide as proof of freedom.

AReasonableMan said...

Althouse's hysterical response to suicide is transparently driven by her own fear of death. Death is part of life. To fail to accept your own mortality is to fail as a human being.

Lewis Wetzel said...

If Trump wants to shred the constitution, why would he pick a strict interpreter of the constitution for the SC?
It's almost as though the Democrat's anti-Trump rhetoric is not based on reason.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

AReasonableMan said...

If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state.

We're talking about lefties, so no, the units are not productive.

Lewis Wetzel said...

"To fail to accept your own mortality is to fail as a human being."
But then death becomes something that is not bad, which seems counter-intuitive.
Stoicism is a dorm room bull session philosophy, ARM. It lacks universal appeal.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Pie throwing-related!

Wiki: Pieing - Political Acts

The probable originator of pieing as a political act was Thomas King Forcade, the founder of High Times magazine. In 1970, Forcade pied Otto N. Larsen, the Chairman of the President's Commission on Obscenity and Pornography; his action was called the first Yippie pieing.[10][11] Aron Kay, also a Yippie, went on to take up Forcade's pieing tactics. Kay pied, among many others, William F. Buckley, Phyllis Schlafly, G. Gordon Liddy, E. Howard Hunt, and Andy Warhol.[12] A disciple of Aron Kay, Thom Higgins, pied singer and anti-gay rights activist Anita Bryant in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1977

Pieing - Convictions, US:
In August 2010, a Michigan State University student named Ahlam Mohsem, 23, threw a Dutch apple pie into Michigan Senator Carl Levin's face and was arrested on assault and battery charges. The police also charged a man who allegedly distracted the senator before the pie was thrown. Mohsem said she threw the pie with the aim of "bringing to light Sen. Levin's war crimes" as a "Zionist".[29]

In September 2016, Sacramento, California mayor Kevin Johnson was attending a charity event at Sacramento Charter High School when a man approached him and hit him in the face with a cream pie. Johnson then punched his assailant. The perpetrator Sean Thompson, was arrested on a felony charge of assaulting a public official and misdemeanor charge of battery on school.


YouTube: Anita Bryant Hit In Face With Pie

Seems pretty violent, really. Bryant says "at least it was a fruit pie."

Aron Kay Pies Phyllis Schlafly

Man-on-woman violence, huh?

Picture of Aron Kay @OWS

Another recent picture of Aron Kay (warning: (painted) female toplessness)

I guess some stereotypes reinforce themselves.

Bruce Hayden said...

The Hobby Lobby case is the flip side of the religious liberty decision by Judge Gorsuch that Eugene Volokh was quoting last night. In that decision, an Arapaho Indian, in prison, wanted to use the prison's sweat lodge for religious reasons. Prison said no, saying that it was too inconvenient for them. The inmate was in a segregated unit for his protection, and they would have to lock down gen pop to escort him back and forth to the sweat lodge. Gorsuch said, too bad. Strict scrutiny means that the state can't just waive its hands and hypothesize costs and burdens. Moreover, there was uncontested evidence that the prison routinely locked down the general population for other reasons, such as escorting segregated prisoners to the prison medical facilities - stuff not protected by the 1st Amdt and specific statutes. In other words, you can't protect religious freedom for Indians w/o also protecting it for Christians too. Gorsuch was at least consistent here.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

AReasonableMan said...
Althouse's hysterical response to suicide


That's sexist.

David Begley said...

ARM

You are the only hysteric here.

Your crowd needs to learn to pick its openings.

Bruce Hayden said...

Yes, he may be from central casting, but remember who his mother was - maybe Reagan's most despised cabinet pick, former EPA head Anne Gorsuch Burford. Which is certainly going to set off the environmental wacko faction of the Dem party. Who too had a brilliant legal mind.

rhhardin said...

Don't take hysteroids.

DanTheMan said...

>>nearly completely missing the back of the governor’s head.

Nearly completely missing? Is that the same as "hitting"?

AReasonableMan said...

Lewis Wetzel said...
But then death becomes something that is not bad, which seems counter-intuitive.


Death is not bad, it is the inevitable consequence of life.

William said...

Assisted suicide was a very big part of Hillary's appeal. Who better to guide and comfort the republic in its last days than Hillary......It's hard to paint Gorsuch as an extremist, but I saw some making that claim on tv last night. It didn't seem that their hearts were really in it though. It appears that they're going with the position that since the Republicans didn't approve Garland, then they don't have to approve Gorsuch. They could pick a better hill to die on, but the filibuster rule was old and decrepit. Now is as good a time as any to grant it a dignified, painless death.

PB said...

Even silence is an art form.

Trumpit said...

I'm far more concerned about murder than I am about suicide. I'm appalled when the murderers get away with it. I'm concerned when a murder is made to look like a suicide. I'm concerned when an assisted suicide is really a murder. I'm concerned when family members give their consent to a DNR when the patient is the one who is supposed to grant "informed consent." Family members may want their parent dead because of hatred or wanting an inheritance.

My mother was murdered by two physicians (with the help of three ER nurses). I WAS AT MY MOTHER'S BEDSIDE. The doctors claimed they were giving her "Comfort Care" when it was a murder by morphine poisoning to cover up something they thought they'd be blamed for (an adverse reaction to Ativan).

There are so many liars, thieves, cheaters, & killers among us. Many are in positions of power and can even obtain the presidency of nations to loot and destroy their citizens. Need I name names?

Lewis Wetzel said...

"Death is not bad, it is the inevitable consequence of life."
When my dad killed himself, I thought it was a bad thing!
Thanks for clearing that up for me, ARM!

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Wait what?

Prisons have sweat lodges?

Greg Hlatky said...

I am suspicious when progressives speak of individual freedoms. It's inevitably a signal for state intervention. Thus, a woman's right to control her own body becomes the necessity of subsidized birth contr pills and abotion mills. The privacy of gay marriage becomes a signal to destroy anyone who disagrees.

AReasonableMan said...

Lewis Wetzel said...
When my dad killed himself, I thought it was a bad thing!


You do not say whether or not your father was healthy. Assisted suicide is about people in hospices and hospitals, where they face only a prolonged period of pain and loss of control before an inevitable death.

Otto said...

"After all, younger folks may hanker for euthanizing us baby boomers". What goes around comes around. This is pure delight to depression babies.

Lewis Wetzel said...

"Blogger AReasonableMan said...
If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state."
That statement applies to everyone, ill or healthy.
When you get into mental states, it's hard to judge whether a person is ill or not. If a person ends their own life because they felt it was the only way to preserve their honor, is that acceptable?

Michael K said...

If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state.

I am OK with assisted suicide in limited circumstances. Just as I am pro-choice before viability and not when it is used as birth control.

Assisted suicide is about people in hospices and hospitals, where they face only a prolonged period of pain and loss of control before an inevitable death.

Those are the ethical examples but they are not what is going on in Britain and Europe. You need to educate yourself. It is not easy because the governments that run state provided health care don't assist in exposing what the consequences of rationing are.

Eleanor said...

Gorsuch went to law school with Obama. Does he remember seeing him in class? That's the question I'd ask if I was in the confirmation hearings. ;-)

HoodlumDoodlum said...

DanTheMan said...
>>nearly completely missing the back of the governor’s head.

Nearly completely missing? Is that the same as "hitting"?


I think we can say with certainty it was a "mostly peaceful" act.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Panel clears Dutch doctor who asked family to hold patient down as she carried out euthanasia procedure
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/01/28/panel-clears-dutch-doctor-asked-family-hold-patient-carried/

rhhardin said...

Who does not see the coop in cooperation.

That's what the dieresis was invented for.

DanTheMan said...

>>I think we can say with certainty it was a "mostly peaceful" act.

As was Lincoln's visit to Ford's theater.

CJinPA said...

The answer to the old question Can a footnote have a footnote? is: Yes!

How about a blog that is nothing BUT footnotes to footnotes, going off on tangents and circling back, only to go off again? If anyone could do it, it's you. Altnotes or Foothouse. (Probably don't want to google that one.)

Peter said...

"Death is the Enemy. There is no question about that."

Francis of Assisi might disagree with you, as he seems to have been rather chummy with his "Sister Death" as his health deteriorated.

Nonetheless, although a case can surely be made, at least in some cases, for a medical nudge into That Good Night, there remains the specter of widespread abuse, not in the sense that people will be murdered but in the sense that some will surely feel intense pressure to just check out already once their lives have become inconvenient to others.

Thus, one might support legal and open euthanasia if one believes the specter can be controlled and contained. Since I have no such belief, I continue to believe that that the (real enough) benefits are not worth the near certainty of abuse.

rightguy2 said...

What Dr. Kennedy said about euthanasia (and abortion).

Kirk Parker said...

It's not Blogger that's objecting to your spelling, it's your web browser. You can probably turn off the spell check feature if you find it objectionable.

Friendo said...

Thank you professor. Thoughtful analysis of the issue followed by (mostly) civil and reasoned comments. That is why I come here day after day. To all commenters: get thee to the Althouse Amazone porttal and support this blog!

FullMoon said...

Trumpit said... [hush]​[hide comment]

My mother was murdered by two physicians (with the help of three ER nurses). I WAS AT MY MOTHER'S BEDSIDE. The doctors claimed they were giving her "Comfort Care" when it was a murder by morphine poisoning to cover up something they thought they'd be blamed for (an adverse reaction to Ativan).


Sorry for your loss. Were they all prosecuted?

readering said...

Gorsuch was a fine pick but that was Trump the reality star playing at presidential.

Birkel said...

readering:
It must be really hard for you to battle through the stages of grief.

That said, I remember when Reagan was criticized for his acting career. You may want to check the history books to see how well those criticisms fared in electoral politics.

Carry on.

GRW3 said...

This is a test for the Democrats. A strict constitutionalist will not move the ball in a conservative activist fashion. They will just decide the cases based on the constitution and the law. Not satisfying when you're a progressive and unhappy with the slow rate of "progress" but at least (are you listening progs?)unlikely to move the ball rightward, except for egregious mistakes. If you force the Republicans to invoke the Reid Rule* and kill filibuster for SCOTUS, Trumps next nomination might be for a conservative activist.

*The Reid Rule was not just ending filibuster for Judges below SCOTUS and Cabinet appointments, like some think. The Reid Rule was that the rules of the Senate can be changed with a simple majority.

Yancey Ward said...

I scanned the comments on last night's blog entry, and when I read this part in Ann's blog entry this morning, I had to "Chuckle":

"Trump looked and sounded very presidential in the classic East Room setting. Those who want immediately to trash anything Trump does were invited to look like fools."

Yancey Ward said...

I also oppose assisted suicide outside that very specific case of allowing the refusing a treatment to extend a life. The problem with crossing that line is that it won't stay there- it will with 100% certainty eventually devolve from assisted suicide to active non-consensual homicide.

Rick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bad Lieutenant said...


AReasonableMan said...
If you can't control the time and place of your own death you are just a productive unit owned by the state.
2/1/17, 7:30 AM




How about never-does never work for you?

Bad Lieutenant said...

Bro do you even Thracian physician?

Trumpit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trumpit said...

FullMoon said, "Sorry for your loss. Were they all prosecuted?"

Thank you. No, the police refused to investigate because it happened in a hospital. As if it should make a difference where the crime took place.

I filed a Wrongful Death lawsuit (in L.A.) that for reasons that would be too long to explain here failed. However, it is worth explaining because it as interesting story of medical evil, but I'd have to do it in a book. I even found a prestigious medical doctor in New York to explain the homicide in nine pages of minute by minute detail.

I had to go out of state to find an expert because no local or California expert would get involved in a capital crime. It is hard (not impossible) to nail a doctor no matter the amount of fraud that was extensive in this case. Moreover, for medical malpractice in California there is an unjust law to benefit doctors, hospitals and insurance companies called MICRA that limits recovery to $250,000. So that makes it nearly impossible to find a lawyer to take the case especially if the patient is elderly.

DavidD said...

I would think that all the people with enthusiasm for suicide are already dead.

Meanwhile, all the people with enthusiasm for abortion are the ones that survived.

Hmmm.

Saint Croix said...

Can a footnote have a footnote? is: Yes!

Nobody writes letters anymore, but I used to run into the problem of more than one P.S.

I would just add an S to the next one. P.S.S.

P.S. Probably because I like the letter S more than other letters, and I was nine, and nobody ever corrected me.

P.S.S. I'm not 100% certain that I never did a P.S.S.S.

P.S.S.S. I suspect that cartoons leads to A.D.D. which in turn leads to multiple postscripts.

P.S.S.S.S. And Twitter.

P.S.S.S.S.S. Which technically means that you could blame Bugs Bunny for Donald Trump.