Grant the Democrats another Wish

In our last post we showed how through Democratic political malpractice, the Republicans got Judge Kavanaugh confirmed on the Supreme Court and energized their base to a point retaining control of both houses of congress is no longer out of the question.  There is a feeling among some Republicans to just turn the page and put all this behind us. This is understandable given the ugliness of the confirmation hearings.  It would also be a colossal mistake.  The accusers, their lawyers and the Democrats should  continue to be investigated.  We need to know just how totally unsubstantiated accusations of decades ago alleged crimes almost came within an eyelash of unseating  and destroying a federal judge.   There are very compelling  reasons for this .

We were told by the Democrats and their media allies a confirmation hearing is not a legal proceeding just a job interview so due process with a presumption of innocence isn’t required. Possibly these people have never been faced with filling a key position with a top-notch candidate.  In most cases it is the prospective employer wooing the prospect and not the other way around. Imagine how difficult it would for any employer to attract top talent if they acquired a reputation as unfair ugly place to work. A place where a totally unfounded claim could forever stain your reputation.  Most employers go to extraordinary lengths to avoid such a reputation.  The Federal Government as an employer is in a particularly  vulnerable position as the salaries are in great variance with the importance of its major positions.  People take a judgeship or a cabinet position not for the salary but the prestige, a desire for public service or a combination of the two.  They don’t do it for the money.  A top lawyer or corporate executive makes far in the private sector.  The prospect of a single uncorroborated accusation ruining your hard-won reputation forever changes the equation for entering public service. A nation needing top-notch people to fill its big positions would instead become a place to avoid.  Is this what we really want for our country?

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Democrat’s Wish Came True

In the Late Notes of our last post,  we advised the Democrats to be careful what they wished for.  They wished and indeed demanded yet another FBI  Judge Bret Kavanaugh background check.   Well they got it, making it the seventh in the series.  We warned it was unlikely to find anything further negative about the Judge given the microscope he’s been under.  On the other hand, the accusers were near virgin territory.  The results are in and as we predicted absolutely nothing supporting the accusers was found.  Without any corroborating evidence, the accusers were left naked for all to see.  Vindicated, Judge Kavanaugh is now a Supreme Court Justice.  What were the Democrats thinking?

Going into the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, the Democrats enjoyed a double-digit edge on congressional generic ballot polling.  This pointed to a strong possibility of  a blue wave rolling over not only the house but even the Senate.  Polls showed far greater enthusiasm to vote among Democrats.  They were united in their disgust with President Trump while Republicans had mixed feelings about their President. Many were happy with the tax cuts, and regulatory reform but distrusted him on such things as trade,  immigration and temperament.  What all Republicans agreed on was the appointment of conservative judges and it appeared they already had their wish with two Supreme court justices and a host of other federal judges. If the Democrats avoided a major mistake, they were on their way to regaining some measure of power.  Today, the generic ballot is a statistical dead heat and the enthusiasm gap has disappeared.  All this happened in just a few weeks.

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A Simple Test to Tell a Progressive from a Conservative

A least one good thing has come from the otherwise disgusting Judge Kavanaugh confirmation hearings.  Always willing to put an optimistic face on even the worst situation, we  have found an excellent way to tell if a person own principles put them on the conservative or progressive team.  Simply, if you used the phrase, “Credible Accusation”, in speech and/or print in describing Mrs. Ford’s unsubstantiated 36 yr old allegation you’re a Progressive.  Simply, centuries of principles of fairness and justice took no part in your judgement just simple expediency.  She’s a women with an elite background so her accusation must be taken as credible. Now, she can be considered a credible witness in the sense of not being a convicted felon or perjurer. A credible accusation is entirely different.  It requires substantiation which to this point is totally lacking. Forget time-tested principles, if you don’t like his policies or him personally, she’s credible and must be believed.  This means disregarding the long accepted concepts of fairness whereby unsubstantiated 36yr old  claims are not to be used to destroy someone.  It means disregarding the presumption of innocence by demanding the accused prove his innocence.  Remember, it was Edmond Burke, revered by many as the father of conservatism, who remarked of those who put “policy” above justice, “Justice is itself the great standing policy of civil society, and any eminent departure from it under any circumstances, lies under the suspicion of being no policy at all.”

Why is this important?  Because there are many masquerading as impartial or as conservatives who are nothing of the sort.  Reporters claiming to be fair are exposed by including their own judgement by using  “Credible Accusation” in their stories.  We’re talking straight news stories in any media. Opinion journalists have every right to make judgements, but not those reporting the news. When you do this you reveal your own and by extension your employer’s  bias.  You give credence to the cries “fake news.”  A free press in a cornerstone of our society, but it’s a two-way street. To maintain our esteem you need to keep your bias out of news stories.  If you’re thinking they can’t possibly be looking at me, just do a simple search of your reporting on the Kavanaugh Hearings.  If you find you said, wrote, tweeted or posted that Mrs. Ford made a “credible accusation” or it’s equivalent you violated your ethical obligations.  If you want to see this bias in living color, just look at the CNN programs featuring rotating panels of journalists from across media, Reliable Sources and Inside Politics, over the past few weeks.  The one thread throughout these programs is the use of “credible accusation” by these “journalists”. Check the record. Just this past weekend on CBS” Face the Nation, host John Dickerson opened the program with “current credible allegations” against Judge  Kavanaugh. How these “journalists” right this wrong we leave to them, but they can’t be expected to be trusted in the future until they  do.  Trust in the news media was at an all time low before the hearings. It is in no one’s interest to see how low you can go.

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But You Knew Where this was Headed

We took a lot of grief when we wrote Roy Moore was being treated unfairly by being hit with 30 yr + allegations of bad behavior. and the American Nazi Party had acted correctly in organizing their parade in Chancellorsville, Va.  We pointed out the City Authorities were at fault.  Sure enough a comprehensive 220 page report authorized by the City by former US Attorney Timothy Heaphy detailed the failures by the City and law enforcement leading to the unfortunate  outcome. We didn’t take these positions out of any love for Roy Moore or the American Nazis, just the opposite.  We abhor both. That’s the point. In order for our system to work we have to be fair to everyone.  This is especially true of ideas and people we dislike. With Moore, we expressed the fear  using  accusations long passed any statute of limitations to attack him would be patently unfair.  Worse if allowed, could be set a precedent whereby any alleged long passed  act could be used to smear and maybe destroy innocent people.   Unfortunately, this is where we now are.

The idea of a Statute of Limitations has been in embedded the law of civilized societies for thousands of years.  Demosthenes wrote the Statutes of Limitations for Classical  Athens.  Why have these laws been included in virtually every nation’s legal codes? To protect defendants.  Three reasons are generally behind their enactment 1. A plaintiff with a valid cause of action should pursue it with reasonable diligence. 2. By the time a stale claim is litigated, a defendant might have lost evidence necessary to disprove the claim. 3. Litigation of a long-dormant claim may result in more cruelty than justice.  Laws reflect the ethics and principles of the a society.  If it is seen as unfair under the law to make a long dormant accusation, why would it be ethical or fair to do it under any other circumstances?  The answer is for thousands of years has been making such old accusations should not be allowed.  If it is improper to so in court it is no less improper to do it anywhere.  After all, Demosthenes wrote Athens’ Statutes of Limitations to control the “Sycophants” (professional accusers).

We must remember laws are agreed upon principles codified or incorporated into the common law.  Just because we’re outside courtroom we don’t discard our principles of justice and fairness and we don’t apply them to some but not others.

This brings us to a situation we warned would happen, the travesty of the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings.  An outstanding human being  by any reasonable standard, Bret Kavanaugh was nominated to fill an open Supreme Court seat for which he is superbly qualified.   Because it would possibly upset the balance on the court the appointment  was bound to be contentious, but Kavanaugh was cruising to confirmation.  At the eleventh  hour a woman makes a claim 36 years ago as a seventeen year old he sexually assaulted her at a party.  How does this by all accounts excellent human being defend himself?

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An Election with Little or No Upside

Less than two months from the 2018 midterm congressional election and we hear the usual cries of the “most important election of our lifetime.”  We even heard this from  former Pres. Obama.  The direction of the country will be altered forever.  Don’t you believe it. There three possible outcomes and none of them will materially change our course.

The first possible outcome is also the most likely. The House goes Democrat while the Senate stays Republican.  Rather than changing course think of a nation becalmed pretty much where we are right now.  Our world leadership continues to recede while financial problems continue to grow.  Neither President Trump or a Democratic house will be inclined to take the robust actions needed to maintain the liberal world order.  Any agreement with the House will be to spend more not less.  Both Trump and  the Democrats have campaigned on not touching entitlements.  Can anyone even imagine an immigration bill being passed? However, more originalist judges would be appointed. While there will be surely more congressional executive branch investigations, impeachment won’t get very far in the face of certain failure in the Senate. If Mueller comes up with the goods on the President, resignation as in the case of  Nixon would be more likely.  Then it’s President Pence. Little or no problems solving will occur and this is the best election outcome.

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