September 5, 2018

Observations from the Kavanaugh hearings.

1. I'm watching the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on the nomination today, now that they've moved beyond the introductory orations, and I'll make some notes here, using a numbered list, updated throughout the day. I'm using a DVR, so I'm behind real time, and the updates will come as I get to things in my recording, but just as the people in the gallery are — under Senator Grassley's rule — free to shout out whatever they want at any time, you can talk about what you like in the comments. I mean, you can talk about anything in the hearings. The people in Grassley's domain might be yelling about anything. I can't make out the words. I've tried. Was someone shouting "Death is death"? I don't know!

2. Grassley, the Committee chair, seems to have made a decision — in consultation with whom, I don't know — to allow the protests to interrupt the Senators and the nominee willy nilly. Grassley is  not terribly articulate, but he mumbled something about "free speech" and the ability of 300 million Americans to make our own judgment. I interpreted this to mean that he (presumably in consultation with others) has decided that the disruption hurts the anti-Kavanaugh side. Kavanaugh either actively agrees or understands the game, and he's showing patience and fortitude and an ability to maintain focus as he gets right back, in the same calm voice, to whatever point he was in the middle of making. The protesters probably think they represent society's victims, but they sound like nothing but noise, and they're making the serene and diligent Kavanaugh seem like the victim of crude disrespect.

3. Kavanaugh has a little booklet-sized copy of the Constitution, and he's got the effective stage business of holding it up when he says "Constitution." We can see how small it is. It does not partake of the prolixity of a legal code, we constitutional scholars know very well. So he demonstrates his dedication to the document, but also — for those who can see it — demonstrates that everything he contends is in there can't possibly be there except as a high level abstraction, leaving the specific details for most things to be discovered elsewhere. Attesting to his dedication to precedent, Kavanaugh held up the Constitution and said it's rooted in Article III, where the words are "judicial power." The judge still must figure out what the judicial power is, and Kavanaugh was soon enough off onto what's in Federalist 78, but why Federal 78 and not something else? He has his favorite sources, and those sources require interpretation too. Once you find the judges are required to follow precedent, you still have to figure out how far. Kavanaugh keeps bringing up Brown v. Board of Education, but not in the context of precedent, and Brown v. Board of Education went against precedent. This is all first-week-of-Conlaw1 stuff, and of course, Kavanaugh knows it. He's got to simplify to talk to the Senators and to the American people, and it's sophisticated not to get too sophisticated.

4. Kavanaugh says that in all of the roles he undertakes, he looks at how the people who have gone before him have done their work. As a judge he is following the case law, and now, as he sits before this committee, he's following what he calls the "nominee precedent." He's read the old transcripts of hearings, and he's using the precedent, notably the precedent of the very influential Ruth Bader Ginsburg performance of the nominee role. What does it mean to "follow" those who have gone before? Obviously, he follows them in the literal sense of chronology. But he's not bound to do the same. Presumably, he'll use what works well and avoid what he can see with hindsight does not. Maybe someone will ask him if his adherence to judicial precedent is analogous. In "nominee precedent," you're following Ginsburg and not Bork. Aren't you picking and choosing, based on what's pragmatic? There's no authority that binds. Bork's Senate performance is like Plessy v. Ferguson. It's bad. You're using your human judgment and power to see that it's bad, and that's how you follow it.

5. One reason Kavanaugh, like Ginsburg, won't talk about how he will decide cases is that he puts great value on judicial independence. He wants litigants coming before him to feel that he has an open mind, and that the one with the better legal argument wins. If he'd talked about the subject to the Judiciary Committee, he'd feel morally bound to the Senators, and then he wouldn't be a proper judge, but a "delegate of the Judiciary Committee." Saying that, he was implicitly telling the Senators that they are violating the Constitution if they try to nail him down about anything.

6. This only gets me to the end of Grassley's questioning (and he reserved some of his time). You see why I can't really live-blog this thing or even delay-blog it completely. There's too much. Not sure how much of this I can do. Feel free to encourage me.

7. Dianne Feinstein endeavored to be gracious, but her patience wore thin as K consumed her time with his spelled-out explanations of specific cases and the rigors of judicial methodology. I was about to compliment her on refraining from interrupting when she interrupted him. She'd say, "Sorry to interrupt, but..." Once he kept speaking a little and then said, "Sorry to interrupt" — that is, apologizing for interrupting her interruption. K expressed empathy with DF's concerns. He was super-nice to her, and as things progressed, what I read in her face was pain — pain over wanting him to feel pain. But he's so heavily swaddled in judicial values that he's safe from everything. As a judge, he does what he must do as a judge, even when it pains him. He's pre-pained, inoculated to pain, and there's no way to further pain him. The children who die in school shootings... the women who would die from illegal abortions... these causes for empathy receive his empathy, but they do not change what he must do. His cold, dry judicial virtue is supreme and sublime, and he must, as ever, humbly submit. Feinstein was reduced to scoffing that K had learned (from Senators?) to "filibuster."

8. Orrin Hatch. Maybe I should skip the Republicans. It's not as though they're giving me a breather.

9. Patrick Leahy. The gravelly-voiced Senator — who I'm surprised to see is only 78 — laid an elaborate trap that hyper-focused on some typo-ridden email that a fellow named Miranda had stolen from him. The idea seemed to be that Kavanaugh knew about this terrible theft (which I think may have upset Leahy not so much because it was "stolen" as because it was so embarrassingly badly written). It was was only a draft as anyone could see, so anyone would know it was stolen, stolen... Or something like that. Miranda was a mole, a mole, I tell you!! I think this is video of Leahy...



Kavanaugh kept his cool, but he needed to see the email under discussion, so we had a minute of watching Kavanaugh read. Then Kavanaugh asked Leahy to tell him where to look to see what he was talking about, and Leahy, facing the requirement that he too read on camera, and quite apparently not up to the task, said he'd move on to some other question. So much for the trap. Leahy proceeded to some other document-heavy trap that didn't work, and he tried to blame Grassley for keeping something confidential and — with the 85-year-old Feinstein sitting between them — the 84-year-old Grassley went ballistic on Leahy. Zero progress was made against Kavanaugh, and I think Kavanaugh had to suppress laughter. Here at Meadhouse, we frequently paused and laughed and were all Ahh, but the strawberries that's... that's where I had them. They laughed at me and made jokes but I proved beyond the shadow of a doubt and with... geometric logic...

10. From my handwritten notes, quoting Dick Durbin: "The things I did were unimaginable." He was referring to his work in a slaughterhouse, after getting Kavanaugh to say that the "dirtiest job" Kavanaugh ever had was construction work (or maybe mowing lawns). I wonder what exactly Dick Durbin did in the slaughterhouse, but it was a set-up to excoriate Kavanaugh for going out of his way to decide a case against some workers in a slaughterhouse. It reminded me of the Gorsuch hearings, the way the Democratic Senators got pretty far along toward proving Gorsuch didn't care if a man froze to death. GOP nominees lack empathy. They don't know the suffering in the real world. That's the theme.

11. Senator Whitehouse had some good material, but he was too disorganized and self-indulgent to make it work. A hardworking, on-task, on-the-ball Senator might have built the argument deftly, but Whitehouse was not the man for the job. The idea was something about the role of the Federalist Society in getting judges (including Kavanaugh) nominated, the participation of right-wing groups in bringing cases and filing amicus briefs, and the success of corporations in winning 5-4 Supreme Court cases (where the 5 Justices in the majority were appointed by Republican Presidents). Whitehouse kept reminiscing about his own cases — back in the day when he was a lawyer — and musing generally about various suspicions that have crossed his mind and it's just not good if people think the Court is political. Of course, Kavanaugh coasted through all of this, repeating the standard message that he's dedicated to judicial independence and deciding cases according to the law.

12. Not long after that I got tired. The channel I was watching (Fox News) turned away to cover President Trump and someone from Kuwait — a great country with a lot of great people many of whom Trump has known for a long time. It was refreshing to hear Trump talk after all that Senatorial smeech. The reporters were yelling questions at Trump, and Trump was rattling out answers. Woodward's book is "fiction." Canada will come to a trade agreement. Three million innocent people are surrounded in Syria and Trump is watching, so the Syrian military had better be careful. After that it was hard to settle in to Mike Lee walking Kavanaugh through the Quirin case. It has rained all day, and it was getting dark. What a crazy slog! It's absurd to expect the nominee to be up for this grilling for 8 hours with scarcely a rest. But it was kind of hard on me too. And it's almost 7 o'clock. The "Team of 9" we're thinking of here is not the Supreme Court, but the Milwaukee Brewers. It's the 3rd game of the series with the Chicago Cubs, and we've won the first 2. What an amusing game last night, no? I love when runs are scored in all sorts of weird ways. What was it — 8 runs in a row scored on plays that were not hits?

13. So that's it for me on the Kavanaugh hearings today.

14. It was the emir of Kuwait. Here's video:



15. Here's the video of the Kavanaugh hearing today, including the part that is still happening as I write this (at 7:17 PM Central Time). How brutal! I do wish I'd jumped ahead to see the more junior Senators. I'm especially interested in the 3 who might be running for President (Klobuchar, Booker, and Harris). I'll probably get to these tomorrow.

258 comments:

1 – 200 of 258   Newer›   Newest»
Achilles said...

The democrats have given up on rational and decent.

The hypocrisy is overwhelming.

#walkaway is going strong despite the media blackout and facebook censorship.

Have fun with that.

glenn said...

I wonder if those spoiled brats understand how much damage they are doing to their and the Dems image.

Drago said...

LLR Chuck's dem allies have decided its time to go full blown conspiracy theorist over another hoax hacking accusation.

The republican staffer found an unsecured dem files on a shared computer used by dem and rep staffers.

How did LLR Chuck's operational ally Leahy describe that? "A digital Watergate", "hacking", "stolen", etc.

LOL

Great group of allies you've teamed up with there Chuck!

Donald Douglas said...

My feeling is that the Democrats have nothing but intimidation and terror. They have nothing. Kavanaugh is eminently qualified. He'll be confirmed. Democrats are throwing a terroristic tantrum to fire up their neo-Marxist base ahead of the November midterms. It was pandemonium yesterday and an embarrassing spectacle.

Browndog said...

Grassley is making a huge mistake. He insists Kavanaugh and the Senators talk over the screeching lunatics so they "can be heard by the millions of Americans that want to hear what is being said".

I don't hear a damn word, all I hear is screeching.

Michael K said...

Making ads for the fall election.

Etienne said...

Leahy had a tortured interrogation, and the nominee fought him for every verb and adjective. The subject was the unconstitutional actions of the White House following 9/11.

Then, Graham comes next and blasts through the same questions, only skipping all the drama, and the nominee answers "no" to all of the accusations that he was part of the unconstitutional junta. He was just a clerk. He was just following orders. He didn't know he could challenge an unlawful order.

Obviously the White House gave extreme prejudice to non-terrorists and spent trillions on foreign wars that were not effective, or winnable. That Kavanaugh was part of that failure.

Kavanaugh was in the sausage factory, and his hand was on the spices.

It seems to me, that we shouldn't promote people who are losers. I've decided to vote no on this guy. Find someone who didn't spend 8 trillion on failed foreign wars.

EDH said...

I'm waiting for Chuck Todd to drive his Prius through the wall of the hearing room.

Michael K said...

It seems to me, that we shouldn't promote people who are losers. I've decided to vote no on this guy. Find someone who didn't spend 8 trillion on failed foreign wars.

So, you are a Senator ? Who knew ?

I guess BDS is coming back.

Etienne said...

Michael K said...So, you are a Senator ?

My voting clerk (representative) will be in touch with your clerk. Oh wait, you don't have a clerk, he died...

Jack said...

Dr. Althouse,

It was "'Yes' is death," because apparently a 'yes' vote for Kavanaugh means women and children will die.

It reminds me of that reasontv clip on youtube: "You just want people to die!" during the failed GOP healthcare debates.

johns said...

Maybe 40 years ago, when a "protest" was shown on TV, people concluded that this must be a very controversial and important issue. Anyway, that was my assumption as I marched past the White House in May 1970. But today, with Code Pink and pussy hats, I think the protests only impress the protesters. Why the dems don't discourage this idiocy is a mystery to me (as is most of what the dems do these days).

hawkeyedjb said...

"Kavanaugh was in the sausage factory, and his hand was on the spices. I've decided to vote no on this guy."

Yeah me too. You have no idea. I heard from a guy who has a friend who knows a guy who used to mow the lawn next door to Kavanaugh's parents house. You wouldn't believe the stuff he knows. Your 8 trillion failed wars are the tip of the old iceberg. You know who else believed the sun rises in the east? Hitler.

Browndog said...

Starting to not like this guy.

When just asked what is the first criteria he uses to evaluate a case he said precedent. He didn't say the Constitution, which is why we are in such a mess.

A 5-4 ruling is set in stone. Change the ideology of just one Justice, and you have the exact opposite ruling now set in stone. This is not law.

This morning when Feinstein was grilling him over 'assault weapons', he referenced hunting as one of the reasons they should not be banned.

Ugh.

Birkel said...

Several times Kavanaugh has the chamber laughing with him.
I'd bet dollars to donuts that those clips fall to the cutting room floor for the evening news.

rhhardin said...

You'd think back alley abortions would be called something else to avoid confusion.

Fernandistein said...

"Politician Brawls Caught On Tape Around The World"

Unfortunately none were killed, AFAIK. I like the Ukrainians with the roses @1:50

Chuck said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Left Bank of the Charles said...

"Grassley is not terribly articulate". Yes he is, if you speak Iowan.

Birkel said...

Browndog:

Explain how you would get Senator Collins' vote with a different answer. That's the rub.

Francisco D said...

" Grassley, the Committee chair, seems to have made a decision — in consultation with whom, I don't know — to allow the protests to interrupt the Senators and the nominee willy nilly."

As people in Iowa know, Grassley is a sincere, kind, old fashioned gentleman. His first instincts are not to offend, which reflects a completely different generational outlook.

Whoever advised him to allow the protests to continue knows two things:

1. It is not in Grassley's nature to be controlling or confrontational;

2. The emotional control exercised by Republicans will stand in sharp contrast to the childish antics of Democrats and their antics.

Hopefully, Trump will not ruin this strategy by making unnecessary comments that will be intentionally misinterpreted.

Chuck said...

Leahy tried to work over Judge Kavanaugh on the 2004 controversy surrounding Manuel Miranda's obtaining certain memos from and between Democratic staff members on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Some of you will remember the story; staff memos were stored on the Committee's computer system in such a way that they could be retrieved by other staff. We are not talking about secret or classified materials. Mere political stuff is what was at issue.

Miranda explained himself back in the day very well, including HERE on the pages of the National Review Online. There are other articles linked there, under "Recommended Articles"; you all should read them.

Leahy is such a thug when it comes to judicial nominations. He's always been a thug. In comparison to the slickly legal Durbin, and the old drama queens Biden and Kennedy.

Etienne said...

Well, to be fair, precedent is then part of the Constitution.

For example State Marriages. Nothing in the Constitution itself, but precedent from English Common Law, and enforceable.

Francisco D said...

Evidence that the Democrat strategy is backfiring:

I agree with Chuckles!

Chuck said...

lol.

I am listening to NPR right now. Nina Totenberg latched on to exactly what I was writing about just above, and she's getting the story wrong, including misnaming Manny Miranda as "Manny Martinez." And claiming that Miranda "hacked" into computers to get the Democrats' offensive and embarrassing memos.

steve uhr said...

re the protesters, I assumed they are removed when they interrupt the hearing, but then 20 min later there is another one, and on and on throughout the day.

Etienne said...

I'm against "assault weapons."

I don't believe peasants should be able to drive their own vehicles. I think all professional drivers must be certified, and have monthly refresher courses and written exams.

40,000 deaths a year is a holocaust.

Browndog said...

Explain how you would get Senator Collins' vote with a different answer. That's the rub.

I get the game must be played. However...lost Collins over citing the Constitution?

Bring up hunting when his beloved 'precedent' would have sufficed?

Ignorance is Bliss said...

...they're making serene and diligent Kavanaugh seem like the victim of crude disrespect.

Why the seem like? It only waters down an obvious truth.

Big Mike said...

I interpreted this to mean that he (presumably in consultation with others) has decided that the disruption hurts the anti-Kavanaugh side.

Yes, I think it does hurt the Dumbocrats. Obviously Schumer and Leahy disagree. I also think it diminishes the Senate as a whole — so much for “the world’s greatest deliberative body.”

Ann Althouse said...

"I don't hear a damn word, all I hear is screeching."

Smeech.

Francisco D said...

"Obviously the White House gave extreme prejudice to non-terrorists and spent trillions on foreign wars that were not effective, or winnable. That Kavanaugh was part of that failure.

Etienne,

Please Google "White House Staff Secretary" in order to better understand Kavanaugh's role in the Bush White House. Right now, you are displaying extreme ignorance.

Big Mike said...

How much do I have to buy from Amazon to encourage you?

rehajm said...

Grassley counted the votes already. Now he's playing the percentages.

traditionalguy said...

Kavanaugh is winning bigly. They have not laid a finger on him. The dude is a master persuader. They should call the game.

rehajm said...

I also think it diminishes the Senate as a whole

The Senate was never that great.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

I see from the reading through the Chuck Grassley tag posts that Sotomayor also got heckled:

'1:12: Another heckler. Hard to understand what he's yelling, but I think I hear the word "babies" and presume it's another anti-abortion activist.'

hawkeyedjb said...

"When just asked what is the first criteria he uses to evaluate a case he said precedent."

You think that was a sincere answer to a straightforward question? The whole thing is theater, and Kavanaugh knows it. This isn't some intellectually honest discussion, this is a "gotcha" session. I hope Mr. Kavanaugh knows how to play.

Birkel said...

Browndog,

And now we can talk plainly about just how loathsome Senator Collins is, w/rt the Constitution. A fair reading of that document does not include penumbras and emanations. But the Court said it should and Collins demands it stay so.

I too take great offense with her positions. But she cannot be lost, at present.

If 55-56 Republicans are in the Senate next January, perhaps RBG will do us all a favor and we can have a more honest discussion.

Yancey Ward said...

Yes, I think Grassley has made exactly that calculation- it serves the Republicans' interest to not clamp down from the chair. Indeed, I think the Democrats were hoping Grassley would take a different tack than the one he has. Grassley is no dummie.

Yancey Ward said...

If you believe the rumors about a walkout, then the walkout was going planned as a response to a provoked Grassley. Grassley seems intent to deny the Democrats that avenue.

Clyde said...

glenn said...
I wonder if those spoiled brats understand how much damage they are doing to their and the Dems image.


They probably don't care. They understand that only the political junkies are actually paying attention to this, and we've all already made up our minds one way or the other, depending on which tribe we belong to. I would guess that well over half of the country would say, "Who is Brett Kavanaugh?" and then go back to watching the Kardashians or doing their fantasy football team.

tcrosse said...

I see from the reading through the Chuck Grassley tag posts that Sotomayor also got heckled

How many of the hecklers were Senators?

Dr. Graphene said...

Any Althouse commentary is infinitely better than anything the MSM can offer, so consider yourself encouraged.

Birkel said...

Althouse,

I encourage you to do precisely as much as you wish to do and not even a tiny bit more.

Qwinn said...

The worst are full of passionate intensity...

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Feel free to encourage me

What to Do With a Day Off
Step one: Give yourself permission to actually take the day off

Give your Supreme Court Confirmation the deep blogging it deserves. Start by recording everything — yes, everything....

David Begley said...

Keep blogging Althouse. America needs you.

Now watching Durbin trying to dupe or bully the nominee about IRRELEVANT documents.

The net, net result of this hearing is that America will hate the Dems even more.

Mike Sylwester said...

Was someone shouting "Death is death"? I don't know!

Maybe Truth is truth or Truth is not truth.

Merny11 said...

What a pompous ass Durbin is - WOW!

Qwinn said...

The Left has always been this crazy. They've just become incontinent the last few years, but it was always there.

Craig said...

The Democrats ARE the Temper Tantrums Party.

Etienne said...

The question of whether a President can pardon himself, is purely academic.

There will always be an Oswald to take care of these kind of issues.

Arashi said...

Somebody, like maybe the capital police/security folks for the senate, should be checking out the people with bags of cash that are paying people in line for the hearing to go in and yell/scream/disrupt and possibly get arrested. There is video from yesterday of this happening.

The folks doing all the agitprop are probably paid actors and the whole thing is just political theater - what is the goal? Just make the process look so bad that the democrats can demand a new process that is 'better'

tcrosse said...

The folks doing all the agitprop are probably paid actors and the whole thing is just political theater - what is the goal?

Just to be Devil's Advocate, maybe it's a False Flag operation to make Dems look bad.

Jack Wayne said...

My view is that Originalism = Living Document. The Originalists claim that they can Devine the original intent of the founders by going back to the original documents and arguments at the Convention. Oddly enough the Anti-Federalists demonstrated at the time that no agreement could be reached in the meaning of a lot of the words in the Constitution. The Living Document adherents maintain that the Constitution must be interpreted by the modern meaning of the words and clauses. Which are subject to extensive arguments about the modern meaning of the words. So they both end up at the same place, claiming that they are each different from the other and they are the right ones. But they are both Humpty Dumpty. Or, are they Lilliputians, arguing about which end of an egg is the correct end to crack?

Birkel said...

Well, Jack Wayne, your view is silly. Glad we could settle that.

Tommy Duncan said...

Ann, I encourage you to continue your comments on this topic. This is a Blog where on occasion I actually learn something. Think of me as a continuing education student.

Birkel said...

The Anti-Federalists were arguing against a federal system. Given that they wanted a completely different system, their argument was not about the definitions of the words the Federalists were using.

Michael K said...

Now watching Durbin trying to dupe or bully the nominee about IRRELEVANT documents.

I did watch a few moments. This is all about Bush, not Kavanaugh.

More BDS.

David Begley said...

You have to read Part II B of the Shurcan decision!

Arashi said...

tcrosse - interesting point, but the republicans have not shown that level of creativity to date that I am aware of.

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/09/texas-doctors-at-kavanaugh-hearing-say-they-saw-liberal-protesters-paid-with-a-literal-bag-of-cash-video/

https://www.chicksonright.com/blog/2018/09/05/witnesses-claim-they-saw-protestors-at-kavanaugh-hearing-get-paid-bags-stuffed-with-cash/

Just two links - but the basic data seems to point to standard leftist actions. Someone should 'detain' one of the guys with the bags of cash and find out who supplied the money.

Or just ignore it and call it free speech.

Nonapod said...

maybe it's a False Flag operation to make Dems look bad.

If recent history has taught me anything, it's that the Dems are more than willing to behave badly at the merest provocation.

And anyway, we certainly wouldn't want to violate our fellow Americans right to freedom of screech.

Jack Wayne said...

Nice ad hominem. Spend some time with the Anti-Federalists and tell me if they would agree there is a such thing as Originalism. What they both agreed on is that judges rule on INTENT. Which means that judges, liberal or conservative, make up shit to bolster their reasoning. But continue to believe in Originalism or Living Document as you prefer.

traditionalguy said...

Durban just brought out Bret’s fighting side just now. He fights to protect his decisions as being the correct ones. We got to see a glimpse of George Patton’s style of command. He is going to roll over the others on the Supreme Court. They won’t know what hit them.

Birkel said...

Jack Wayne,
Your understanding of the definition of ad hominem is sorely lacking. I called you no names. I called your opinion silly.

If you meant to use "or" as the "exclusive or" then we can agree.

The purpose of Originalism is to place the onus of activity on the Congress (Article I) or the Amendment Process (Article V). The purpose of the Living Document theory is to free judges to act without specific reference to the Constitution. If you do not see the difference between following the constitutional process 2/3rds of the states adopted and telling judges to follow their own hearts, your opinion is silly.

Hagar said...

There are posts up about known Antifas being recognized among the protestors and also someone with a bucket of cash paying off some of the yellers and sign holders.

Sebastian said...

"He's got to simplify to talk to the Senators and to the American people, and it's sophisticated not to get too sophisticated."

Considering that many (most?) of the senators are lawyers, that is a telling criticism.

Mike Sylwester said...

I appreciate Althouse's semi-live commenting here, but I also am worried about the bacteria growing in the back of her refrigerator.

Birkel said...

Mike Sylwester,
That made me laugh. Thank you.

Francisco D said...

Birkel,

Jack Wayne is using words and concepts that he obviously doesn't understand. There is no point in trying to reason with him.

There are and will be more interesting discussions on this thread.

rhhardin said...

judicial coolness

The feelings express happiness, make one smile. Analysis of the feelings expresses happiness, all personality aside; makes one smile. The former uplift the soul, dependent upon space, upon duration, up the conception of humanity considered as itself, in its celebrated constituents! The latter uplifts the soul, independently of duration and space, up to the conception of humanity considered in its highest expression, the will! The former are concerned with vices and virtues; the latter only with virtues. Feelings do not know their marching order. The analysis of feelings teaches how to reveal it, increases the strength of the feelings. With the former, all is uncertainty. They are the expression of happiness, grief, two extremes. With the latter, all is certainty. It is the expression of that happiness which results at a given moment from knowing how to restrain oneself in the midst of good or evil passions. It uses its calm to render the description of the passions down to a principle which flows through the pages: the non-existence of evil. The feelings weep when they must, as when they need not. Analysis of the feelings does not weep. It possesses a latent sensibility which catches one off guard, prevails over miseries, teaches how to dispense with a guide, provides a combat weapon. The feelings, sign of weakness, are not feeling! The analysis of feeling, sign of strength, generates the most magnificent feelings I know. The writer who is taken in by feelings must not be placed on a par with the writer who is taken in neither by feelings nor himself. Youth intends sentimental lucubrations. Maturity begins to reason without confusion. He was only feeling, he thinks. He used to let his sensations wander: now he gives them a pilot. If I liken humanity to a woman, I shall not expatiate upon her youth's being on the wane and the approach of her middle-age. Her mind changes for the better. Her ideal of poetry will change. Tragedies, poems, elegies will no longer take precedence. The coolness of the maxim shall prevail!

Lautreamont

Michael K said...

Yup, here are the paid protestors.

I wonder how many paid trolls posting on blogs ?

Nonapod said...

Feinstein was reduced to scoffing that K had learned (from Senators?) to "filibuster."

Yeah, I assume Feinstein was aware of her hypocrisy. But whatever.

Arashi said...

Well Soros has a lot of cash and a ton of hate, is well organized and has organizations in most countries, so I would venture a lot - which is more than a few, but less than most..

What was the saying - follow the money?

mccullough said...

I’m listening to this on NPR. Seems like the SJWs shout every five minutes like an update.

I wish they would chant: “Block that kick! Block that kick!”

These hearings used to be governed by gold etiquette. No shouting or cheering during the players swing. Now the opposing fans believe they are watching a contact sport.

Maybe a penalty box for a few senators would be good when they interrupt.

mccullough said...

“Golf etiquette” not “gold etiquette”

Nonapod said...

I wonder how many paid trolls posting on blogs ?

I sometimes wonder that too. But if so I believe it's a huge waste of money in the case of this blog. Trolls and Moby's always seem to stick out pretty significanly around here... at least to me anyway.

Jack Wayne said...

And you don’t see the problem with your “solution”. Every SCOTUS case is based on some legislation passed by Congress or on some act of the President. The bureaucratic cases come back to legislation by way of delegation. SCOTUS determines if the parties involved have been naughty or nice mostly based on the latitude that a poorly written Constitution grants to all parties involved. You are suggesting that SCOTUS should somehow force Congress or the President to act differently if they are urged to do so. Sounds perfectly logical to me. Congress acts poorly so ask them to act nice and change their legislation? The way to get rid of the rule of Humpty Dumpty is to have definitions in the Constitution that can be changed by amendment as needed. Otherwise, we will seesaw from one side to the other for eternity. The lawyers that wrote our Social Contract ignored a basic rule of contracts - define all terms.

Mike said...

Keep going Althouse. Perseverance is a virtue. And you are providing clarity for those of us unable to view the circus in real time.

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

I feel sorry for the Democrats. It's pretty hard to convincingly pull off being a rebel opposing The Man, when you are The Man. Almost as hard as pulling off being a champion of women's rights when you spend your afternoons, evenings, and weekends engaging in coercive and threatening sexual aggression towards women. Its all got to be so exhausting.

Big Mike said...

Maybe I should skip the Republicans.

Bigot.

mccullough said...

Althouse, doing a great job on this post. Interesting observations.

Keep up the great work

tcrosse said...

I wonder how many paid trolls posting on blogs ?

If I were paying trolls, I would pay them to be persuasive. Most aren't.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Crack Emcee said...

Ann,

"8. Orrin Hatch. Maybe I should skip the Republicans."

Yeah. Especially the guy who gave us DSHEA - AKA “sell whatever you want, just don’t let us catch you.”

n.n said...

Pro-Choice is two choices too late. #HateLovesAbortion

Michael K said...

He's pre-pained, inoculated to pain, and there's no way to further pain him. The children who die in school shootings... the women who would die from illegal abortions..

Then, of course, there are the children who died from legal abortions. Don't forget about them.

Gosnell was "local news."

Michael K said...


I wonder how many paid trolls posting on blogs ?

If I were paying trolls, I would pay them to be persuasive. Most aren't.


Do you think the ones screaming in the hearing room are ?

There must be a reason. The trick is to tell the difference from the usual lefty posters.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Jack Wayne said...

The lawyers that wrote our Social Contract ignored a basic rule of contracts - define all terms.

No contract defines all terms. To do so, you would essentially need to incorporate a full dictionary into your contract. And even then, all you would end up with are circular definitions. If you don't strive to interpret the contract according to the meanings of the words at the time the contract was adopted then you are unmoored from any fixed meaning.

walter said...

Has Brett snuck in some White Powah! signals?
Let me know when there are topless PYTs (Protesting Young Thangs).
Was the open defecation article suggested as "related" when you read about yesterday's hearing?

n.n said...

Abortion rites are a zero-sum game. The baby lives, the mother loses. The mother wins, the baby dies. The Twilight Amendment established cruel and unusual punishment and denial of due process as the rule of law. I wonder what is worse, a minority regime's one-child that denies life deemed unworthy, or a democratic regime's selective-child that normalizes life deemed unworthy for political, social, and economic progress. It seems that normalizing psychopathic behavior, under a veil of privacy no less, would be worse.

Chuck said...

Sheldon Whitehouse saying that it is a problem that so many SCOTUS decisions are 5-4 divides on partisan grounds.

Uh, yeah. And Whitehouse should be looking at the Dem-nominees to a very great extent on that.

Ken B said...

I encourage you. What's the right phrase? You go girl!

etbass said...

It's fun watching the screaming, hysterical women (and a few men), ushered unceremoniously, from the hearing room. Gettum outta here!!!

n.n said...

Abortion rites (e.g. murder, man slaughter, selective-child, one-child), wicked solutions, final solutions, are, unfortunately, a natural right, but are not often normalized in human societies. In fact, not only are they not tolerated, but there are democratic efforts to discourage them.

rehajm said...

It's rather impressive to see the organization between the protesters, the organizations stationed outside to pay and schedule them, the Congress critters who got them access to the room, and law enforcement and legal to process them so efficiently. They never seem to run low on shriekers.

jimbino said...

The rules of Constitutional interpretation, whether originalist or not, are of necessity extra-Constitutional and supersede the rules set forth in the Constitution itself.

This is like rules of Biblical exegesis, where besides asking "what do these verses say?", one must ask, "is this really the Word of God?" Just as no amount of the Bible's saying "This is the Word of God" can make it so, there is nothing in the Constitution that establishes it as the Word of the People, since no document can be self-authenticating. Even validity of a will that says, "This is my last Will and Testament" needs to be authenticated by signature or other statement of intent, witnesses and sometimes notarization.

Whereas Biblical exegesis historically has had more to do with interpreting Bible verses, nowadays the big questions are whether or not the Bible has anything to do with God and, indeed, whether or not there is such a thing as God.

Besides the accepted extra-constitutional rule that the Constitution is a valid expression in English of the Will of the People, I can think of a few other extra-Constitutional rules never discussed in my Con Law classes.

One is that, regardless of its lousy grammar (e.g. Second Amendment), interpretation of Constitution is to assume that it is written in English. Would it be equally valid if written in French or Latin?

A leading Constitutional statement that said "This Constitution is valid as interpreted in English" would be superfluous, and an equivalent statement written in French or Latin would be ipso facto paradoxical and meaningless.

Besides all the applicable rules of logical exegesis, another supra-Constitutional rule is the Rule of Law, which in my mind logically requires that "nobody may sit in judgment on his own case" which implies that nobody may pardon himself or, by extension, any close friend or member of his own family, regardless of what the Constitution might "say."

I'm sure you can think of other such rules. Why are these matters never discussed?

tcrosse said...

For a change of pace, they could bring in the gang from Westboro Baptist to add to the discussion.

rehajm said...

Update from the Atlanta Fed: GDP Now is 4.4 percent.

traditionalguy said...

Watching Whitehouse start coming on strong against Bret and ending up liking him and being nice to him like two lawyers after court was a magic moment. Beware of a nice opponent.. How many people can Bret make into his friends in three days.

And Trump laughs.

Michael K said...

rehajm said...
Update from the Atlanta Fed: GDP Now is 4.4 percent.


Shhhh.

We're listening to Durbin.

Greg P said...

The children who die in school shootings... the women who would die from illegal abortions... these causes for empathy receive his empathy, but they do not change what he must do.


The women who aren't raped, because they have a gun to stop the rapist

The babies who don't die from legal abortion

It's amazing how selective your (or the Left's) "empathy" is.

Kavanaugh has a functioning brain, so he sees those people you wish to ignore, and and doesn't fall for your empathy bullshit

Shouting Thomas said...

This is the Althouse I love and admire.

MountainJohn said...

The folks doing all the agitprop are probably paid actors and the whole thing is just political theater - what is the goal? Just make the process look so bad that the democrats can demand a new process that is 'better'

Cloward-Piven 2018.

Soon we'll have a section of seating in the committee rooms set aside for disrupters.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

jimbino said...

Just as no amount of the Bible's saying "This is the Word of God" can make it so, there is nothing in the Constitution that establishes it as the Word of the People, since no document can be self-authenticating.

Too bad the founding fathers didn't know about blockchain.

For that matter, too bad God didn't know about it.

n.n said...

Ironically, while the Twilight Amendment reduced illegal abortions, restricting abortion rites increased illegal rapes. Perhaps following the progressive path and fully liberalizing abortion rites, would reduce the need and practice of fraudulent claim charges necessary to securing selective-child with #NoJudgment.

madAsHell said...

Feel free to encourage me.

Consider yourself encouraged. Honestly, I've never heard "Brown vs. the Board of Education" explained that way.

walter said...

Just then..Alex Jones busts in screaming with Rubio riding horsey style on his back, fingers clawing at Jones' eyes.

n.n said...

blockchain

The founding fathers used human blockchains. God has no use for a technology that only has value to lifeforms with limited perception and skill.

Fernandistein said...

Ignorance is Bliss said...
For that matter, too bad God didn't know about it.


Sheeit, if god knew anything that the mud-daubing goat-herding peasants of 2,000 years ago didn't already know, he sure kept quiet about it, but maybe he just didn't want to come across as a wise-guy or know-it-all in addition to being a pretty nasty bully. It's pretty mysterious.

This one article about a complicated technology of which I know nothing that I skimmed thru says "Of the experts we contacted, only one was fully enthusiastic about blockchain as an identity tool." The one expert is from IBM, which used to be god.

Rick said...

Jack Wayne said...
Spend some time with the Anti-Federalists and tell me if they would agree there is a such thing as Originalism. What they both agreed on is that judges rule on INTENT.


Originalism refers to original meaning, not original intent. So this is wrong.

JohnAnnArbor said...

If you're going to grandstand, Senators, at least practice first. Sucking at it isn't very impressive.

Ann Althouse said...

"Nice ad hominem. Spend some time with the Anti-Federalists and tell me if they would agree there is a such thing as Originalism. What they both agreed on is that judges rule on INTENT. Which means that judges, liberal or conservative, make up shit to bolster their reasoning. But continue to believe in Originalism or Living Document as you prefer."

No. Conservative textualists don't go by intent. They go by the original meaning of the text. Look it up. They may cheat or lean as they find that meaning, but they don't go for intent. They go for what the text in the document would have meant to the public at the time, not the private intent of those who wrote the text.

traditionalguy said...

The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution and States ratified it with an agreed Bill of Rights add on as condition precedent. As for authentication that the Constitution is the word of the people, that took place in 1862, 1863 and 1864 when hundreds of thousands of brave men voted with their own bloody deaths in battle. Since then, there have been few complaints.

Ralph L said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rabel said...

I'm reminded of the day room on my last visit to the nursing home.

Tina Trent said...

Feinstein gracious? If she wanted more time she shouldn't have wasted her time yesterday fellating Al Sharpton while the clock ticked. She should not be colluding with other Democrats in disrupting the hearings by enabling the fascistic protesters.

You cannot reasonably call any senate democrat gracious as they abet anarchic disruption of the process and try to drown out the hearings for the American public.

Feinstein, in any case, was just playing the waggly faux victimized "sit down and shut up white boy" game. And the rest of her performance was hate-filled and utterly beneath contempt, too.

However, I think I've had enough sports metaphors, as well as identity politics, from Kavanaugh.

Jupiter said...

tcrosse said...

"If I were paying trolls, I would pay them to be persuasive. Most aren't."

I have been noticing this. These days, the Lefties aren't just out to lunch, they never got back from breakfast. I am wondering if this is related to "How many fingers?". The point being to assert what is self-evidently false, so as to trap those who still retain some vestigial capacity for independent thought. All crazy, all the time, or you're an Enemy of the People.

Rabel said...

The screaming, the incoherent babbling, the nice, quiet ladies sitting through it just trying to get through the day.

And the smeech. I'll bet you could cut the smeech with a butter knife if you're sitting behind Feinstein, Grassley, Hatch and Leahy.

tim in vermont said...

You don’t steal emails, you purloin them.

tcrosse said...

"If I were paying trolls, I would pay them to be persuasive. Most aren't."

OTOH the purpose of the troll is not to persuade but to disrupt.

southcentralpa said...

Oddly enough Professor, Leahy is also the very first Dem that Vermont EVER sent to the Senate.

Rick said...

If I were paying trolls, I would pay them to be persuasive. Most aren't

This misunderstands the nature of trolling. A troll's goal is to pull the conversation away from the original subject to something else entirely. The original trolls saw this as a game unto itself but most trolls today do so because the original subject damages their team.

Molly said...

I think Kavanaugh was effective in saying to some question(s): "Well I decide cases after reading briefs, hearing arguments, and listening to the reasoning of colleagues and clerks. So I don't think you are asking me to make a decision without following that process, are you?"

Molly said...

And the yelling spectators are not making a strong case for being anti-Trump. And I'm pretty sure it's just his normal manner of speaking, but I often think Leahy sounds like he's been drinking. The Captain Queeg line of questioning also did not redound to Leahy's credit.

MadisonMan said...

78-year-old Leahy.
84-year-old Grassley.
85-year-old Feinstein.

You skipped the 84-year-old Hatch.

Do they ask questions from oldest to youngest? So that the oldest ones can snooze at the end of the hearing?

Michael K said...

many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.

I would know. I am one of them.


I believe it and we are trying to get you Obama holdovers out as fast as possible.

Sammy Finkelman said...

Leahy, facing the requirement that he too read on camera, and quite apparently not up to the task, said he'd move on to some other question.

The reason is that Senator Diane Feinstein quietly told Senator Patrick Leahy "It's not there" The audi has been broadcast.

Ann Althouse said...

Why are you worrying so much about trolls?

Judge writing as writing, and don't rely on who's saying it. Take it for what it's worth and have a critical mind and skepticism about everything. Don't waste your time on what you can detect is crap, and what does it matter if it's from someone who's insincere for some reason or other.

There's so much fakery everywhere that you don't have time to investigate everything. Just read efficiently and critically (which is worth doing for many reasons).

Birkel said...

Sammy Finkleman:
That is the worst defense of Leahy I can imagine.
*snicker*

Ann Althouse said...

Please stick to the topic of the Kavanaugh hearings. Don't use this post to suggest other things that could be blogged. Scroll down to the latest cafe and write about miscellaneous topics.

I'm going to delete things that are off topic and things that respond to the off-topic things.

Greg P said...

Blogger Browndog said...
Explain how you would get Senator Collins' vote with a different answer. That's the rub.

I get the game must be played. However...lost Collins over citing the Constitution?


Collins and Murkowski both know that Roe is not in the US Constitution

Both of them want Roe to stay.

He can felate them with "precedent", or he can risk getting voted down

Ann Althouse said...

"Do they ask questions from oldest to youngest? So that the oldest ones can snooze at the end of the hearing?"

Old people tend to be better in the morning.

Leahy was having a hard time speaking as it was. I think it's awful for people who have lost their strength to cling to power.

Darrell said...

10. The Left B Crazy.
11. The Left B Crazy.

Michael said...

It is appalling to see these senior Democrats putting their heads together to concoct a childish plan to disrupt these proceedings. Literally like a bunch of kids on the playground plotting to drop their books at exactly 2 pm to scare their old math teacher. I should be too old and cynical to be jarred as I am by this behavior but here I am.

Leslie Graves said...

I haven't read all the comments so I don't know if the point has been made that the conduct of the Kavanaugh opponents resembles the recent events in Madison a la David Blaska.

Michael K said...

"I think it's awful for people who have lost their strength to cling to power."

You might bring that up to Cindy McCain.

tim in vermont said...

Oddly enough Professor, Leahy is also the very first Dem that Vermont EVER sent to the Senate.

That was before we built the interstate highway system inviting in the detritus of Long Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and NYC.

Yancey Ward said...

JohnfromAnnArbor is correct- if you are going to do this sort of thing, don't do it stupidly. You would think grandstanding should be old hat for these people, and well polished by this point in their careers.

Bill Peschel said...

"When just asked what is the first criteria he uses to evaluate a case he said precedent."

Precedent is the only reason abortion is permitted, because it sure ain't in the Constitution.

Tina Trent said...

Althouse @3:03

Technically, you did tell us the rules for this thread would be the same ones Grassley is using for the hearings. You said we can shout out anything we want.

Now if only Grassley would follow your lead in revoking . . .

Michael K said...

It's kind of sad to see these politicians, who are mostly mediocre lawyers, trying to get Kavanaugh to render some sort of opinion when they knew no Democrat appointee would be asked to do so.

Daddio said...

Please continue your analysis. I've been looking forward to this since he was nominated. Your analysis is very valuable to your readers!

There's some sincere encouragement for you.

FWBuff said...

Thanks for watching and analyzing all of this, Professor!

Howard said...

Thanks, Professor. Confirming my predeliction that this hearing a big not much falafel and Judge K will be conformed.

FWBuff said...

Also, thanks for your clip from the "Caine Mutiny". I just watched the "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" last night, which also had Humphrey Bogart in an unflattering role. He was a great actor who didn't mind playing characters who were unintelligent, paranoid loudmouths. Maybe he could have played a Senator on the Judiciary Committee.

rehajm said...

GDP Now 4.4!!!

GDP Now 4.4!!!

GDP Now 4.4!!!

(dragged out out comments section)

gdpnow 4.4.....gdp n....

Michael K said...

Maybe he could have played a Senator on the Judiciary Committee.

Charles Laughton did a better job than anyone else could.

It was his last movie. Pretty good. He would fit right in to that committee.

Mike Sylwester said...

Kavanaugh can felate Collins and Murkowski?

Francisco D said...

"Feinstein gracious? If she wanted more time she shouldn't have wasted her time yesterday fellating Al Sharpton while the clock ticked."

Aaargh!

I cannot shake that image from my brain.

Mike Sylwester said...

Let's all get back to spelling the word as feLLate (with a double-L)

Jay Elink said...

when I see those hecklers I I wonder how many will wind up as bag ladies, shopping-cart pushers and underpass/cardboard box dwellers.

Because they are effing nuts, victims of Early Onset Batshit Craziness.

Char Char Binks said...

OK

Arashi said...

I don't know - since most of them are paid professional protesters, I would think that they might have decent benefits, retirement accounts, etc. and will at some point just retire to their houses in Florida or wherever.

gilbar said...

Our Professor :so we had a minute of watching Kavanaugh read. Then Kavanaugh asked Leahy to tell him where to look to see what he was talking about, and Leahy, facing the requirement that he too read on camera, and quite apparently not up to the task, said he'd move on

tcrosse said...

Après RBG le déluge.

Phil 3:14 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Phil 3:14 said...

Drago;
Have you ever considered dropping the "LLR Chuck" schtick?

Its tedious.

Andrew said...

Thank you for blogging this, and for providing this forum for comments, Ann.

I know it's wise for Kavenaugh to be polite and circumspect. He is playing the game well, and comes across as an endearing figure.

But I so wish that he could let loose just a little, and provoke the Democrats.

For example:

"Sen. Leahy, sir, are you drunk?"

"Sen. Feinstein, why don't you ask that question to your Chinese spy driver?"

"Sen. Booker, I sincerely don't mean to cause you TEARS OF RAGE!"

"Sen. Harris, how much are you paying these protesters?"

"Senators, please note that my 'okay' hand signal only stands for white privilege, not white supremacy."

I think most people would enjoy it, while liberal heads would explode across the land.

Bay Area Guy said...

I, for one, don't want Senator Dianne Feinstein to felate Al Sharpton.

It might be good for racial relations, but it isn't good for the mental imagery in my brain.

tcrosse said...

But I so wish that he could let loose just a little, and provoke the Democrats.

"You protesters, just for that, no Roe v Wade for you".

The Godfather said...

When the leftists go beserk over something that Trump did or said, part of me says, Well he asked for it! He's abrasive, rude, crude, and lewd. He invites that kind of response.

But Kavanaugh? He's quiet, respectful, well-spoken. There's nothing about him that invites or deserves extreme behavior in response. Except the fear that he will begin to undo the Project of the Left.

So what we are seeing in these hearings is the secret heart of modern "liberalism". It is irrational, hateful, uncompromising, and vicious. Do not let these people get control of our government. Or if they do, pray that the restraints built into the Constitution work.

buwaya said...

Professional protesters often work for the vast network of liberal-left institutions, think tanks, foundations, NGO's, Quangoes, contractors, regulatory intervenors, unions, law firms, university departments; all the myriad appurtenances to the Federal bureaucracy.

Attached to the official bureaucratic mass like layers upon layers of barnacles, they serve as a semi-permanent home for political operatives, maintained during and between elections with funds that are ostensibly non-political.

The right has a relatively tiny analogue of this system.

The Godfather said...

I understand why Althouse is focusing on the questioning of Kavanaugh by Democrats, but Volokh was some pretty interesting clips from his dialogue with Sen. Lee (R).

https://reason.com/volokh/2018/09/05/the-best-parts-of-the-kavanaugh-hearing

buwaya said...

"So what we are seeing in these hearings is the secret heart of modern "liberalism". It is irrational, hateful, uncompromising, and vicious."

Yes and no. It is simply amoral and focused on the one goal that matters. They will do what they have to do with no concern for anything else at all. There is nothing irrational in it. Assume a singular will to power and you will understand them perfectly.

Bay Area Guy said...

I like Kavanaugh. He's quite articulate, but still soft spoken.

He's the kinda fellow that made America great. He's an amazing success story, near the top of his profession (about to become AT the top), yet he's humble. He coaches girls basketball, he run marathons.

I like the dude. We need more like him. Indeed, if lesser folks would adopt his work ethic and habits, surprise, surprise, they might attain greater success in life.

robother said...

Give Leahy a break. He's asking questions of Kavanaugh, even as he's trying to intercept the signals of the clerk behind him. "Is it a White Power sweep right, or up the gut?"

n.n said...

Liberalism is a divergent (i.e. progressive or monotonic) ideology, and conventionally factional, generational. Note, yesterday's liberal is today's conservative. #PrinciplesMatter

n.n said...

the clerk behind [Kavanaugh]. "Is it a White Power

The White Mexican-American with Jew privilege? Hi, Mom!

They have well and truly jumped the ass.

n.n said...

The right has a relatively tiny analogue of this system.

Collectivism led by minority regimes have their advantages. The center and right's ideology makes it difficult to mobilize the population. Case in point: ending slavery, standing against diversity, standing for equal (not "=") treatment, and the voice of millions of wholly innocent human lives that face cruel and unusual punishment and sentenced to summary abortion (i.e. selective-child).

Birkel said...

The Godfather:

When you realize that Kavanaugh receives the same treatment that every other person, including Trump, receives, why don’t you question your preconceptions? IOW, why allow yourself to be swayed by the same old, same old nonsense?

Understand the stakes of the Democrat gambit.

Bay Area Guy said...

We have the stupidest Democrat now speaking, Sen. Hirono. She is from Hawaii. She might be from Hilo or something. She is reading nonsense about Judge Kozinski, trying to tar Kavanaugh for dumb jokes that Kosinski used to e-mail his friends.

n.n said...

Stand for America's human rights leaders (Republicans and the willing) who sacrificed blood and treasure to end slavery. Stand for America's civil rights leaders who confront diversity (e.g. racism) or color judgments (i.e. denying individual dignity). Stand for equality (not "=" or political congruence) - civil unions for all (not just the transgender/homosexual elite) consenting adults. Stand for millions of wholly innocent human lives without a voice that have faced cruel and unusual punishment and sentenced to summary abortion for social progress under the Twilight (a.k.a. penumbra) Amendment. Don't kneel. Stand your ground. Exercise your capital. Vote for a conservation of religious/moral principles: individual dignity, intrinsic value, inordinate worth. Reconcile moral, natural, and personal imperatives.

Time will tell where Kavanaugh stands.

Clark said...

What are we to make of Senator Hirono? Everything she says drips with contempt. Is she as hateful as she seems? Or is she unable to read ordinary social cues? Or perhaps she is ultra-insecure?

Owen said...

“The children who die in school shootings... the women who would die from illegal abortions... these causes for empathy receive his empathy, but they do not change what he must do. His cold, dry judicial virtue is supreme and sublime, and he must, as ever, humbly submit.”

Holy shit. Professor A, I thought I had a clue about “cruel neutrality,” but clearly I did not.

Narayanan Subramanian said...

What is the proper frame(ing) for the confirmation hearing ...

As jury of peers of the nominee or grand jury looking for cause of action?

Or something different?

buwaya said...

"What are we to make of Senator Hirono?"

Only partially socialized into "normal" levels of political rhetoric.
It takes a certain understanding of social customs to walk to the edge like that without slipping.

Like many Asian liberal/leftists, she has no sense of how she comes across.

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

More of America's Posterity die in scalpel swipings because of legal abortion (i.e. Twilight Amendment) and subsequent normalization of an ancient rite -- natural right -- of human sacrifice for secular incentives and social progress. #HateLovesAbortion

That said, as with slavery before, it is unlikely that abortion rites, or wicked solution, will end without a civil war, or comprehensive moral reform (i.e. education) and personal responsibility. Hopefully, the change will processed with the latter choice.

Karen of Texas said...

I find it sad that Kavanaugh must play games.

On the bright side, it's nice that precedent has been set that allows one to evolve.

Darrell said...

You'd have to be pretty stupid to vote Democrat after witnessing THAT.

Bob Loblaw said...

Grassley, the Committee chair, seems to have made a decision — in consultation with whom, I don't know — to allow the protests to interrupt the Senators and the nominee willy nilly.

The whole thing is theater. Unless something pretty damning from Kavanaugh's past turns up there's no chance he won't be confirmed. The Democrats want to pander to #The Resistance, and the Republicans are perfectly willing to put the other side's crazies on display. I think this sort of thing will play well on college campuses, but the mushy middle of the political spectrum will be horrified.

mccullough said...

I thought Durbin was going to talk about The Slaughterhouse cases. Get some privileges and immunities discussion going.

Clyde said...

Darrell said...
You'd have to be pretty stupid to vote Democrat after witnessing THAT.


True. But as H.L. Mencken said, "Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public."

n.n said...

Republicans need to remember: rehabilitation, revitalization, reconciliation. The people need to be productive in order to avoid the progressive corruption forced by perpetual smoothing functions. But note, whether we elect public (i.e. contributory and non-contributory entitlements) or private (e.g. insurance, charity) smoothing functions, there will be functions to ensure a differentiable path.

That said, we need to remove the bloody "M" that has been affixed to motherhood. Men and women aren't kids anymore. Reconcile.

readering said...

I plan to vote Democratic.

Michael K said...

Like many Asian liberal/leftists, she has no sense of how she comes across.

Kamala Harris is the one who seems to me to be unaware of how strident she sounds. She is certainly no Obama.

She may think she is cool but she is just Hillary without the charm

Willie Brown served as Bill for her but Willie was smarter than Bill.

Kamala is not.

Bob Boyd said...

Thank you Ann Althouse.

Michael K said...


Blogger readering said...
I plan to vote Democratic.


OMG! What a shock !!!

readering said...

Of course in weird California that sometimes means choosing between Democrats (Senate).

readering said...

Michael K shocked that I write Democratic instead of Democrat!

Ann Althouse said...

"Technically, you did tell us the rules for this thread would be the same ones Grassley is using for the hearings. You said we can shout out anything we want."

No, I didn't. I said it had to be about the Kavanaugh hearings.

rcocean said...

It always amazes me how the Democrats on Senate Judiciary Committee is always a rogue's gallery of pompous blowhards, fools, liars and bimbos.

With the exception of DiFi who can come off as smart occasionally, i wouldn't trust any of them to run a Popsicle stand.

Leahy always off as a fake tough guy. Every time he opens his mouth, I laugh at his dumbness and then want to punch him in the face. And there's tough guy Blumethal, the "heroic Vietnam Vet".

Hirano is simply a dimwit - and seems to have flunked civics 101.

rcocean said...

Hats off to Althouse for blogging some of this nonsense. I listened off and on. Actually, very little "on".

These things are getting more and more absurd.

They should just go straight to the vote, and stop wasting our time.

Birkel said...

Althouse,

I worked my comment back toward Kavanaugh.
No worries about you deleting me.
But I did play by your rules.

Ann Althouse said...

Sorry I had to delete the people who responded to the commenter who brought in the other topic (which is something there is a new post about).

Also, thanks for the encouragement!

I do want to get to the rest of the Senators. The more junior ones really should be better, and three of them are potential presidential candidates, but I'll have to start fresh in the morning.

Ann Althouse said...

@Birkel

I had to get that very distracting comment out of this thread. Thanks for your note though, and feel free to repost what's about Kavanaugh.

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