Josh Marshall has a very good thread on this:
GOP sens & the people actually running this - Federalist Society clique operating out of the White House - have one priority: Get BK on the Court by any means necessary. Damaged? Who cares? Thomas has been damaged goods on the Court for almost 30 yrs. None of them care.
2/ The people who are apoplectic are the operatives running Republican campaigns right now. This is the worst possible scenario for them. Those folks don’t give a crap abt BK and they don’t even care that much abt the Court, at least as it concerns their day jobs.
3/ Regardless of how this turns out you now have basically guaranteed the last six weeks of the campaign focus on the GOP and sexual predation when much of the campaign was already abt the ur-predator Donald Trump. It basically turns up to 11 what was already a central …
4/ vulnerability and guarantees it will be talked about every day.
Kavanaugh-Blasey Ford showdown really about whether a woman can control her story, her body, her destiny
This is a cultural and psychological battle that's taking place — about what kind of society America wants to be in the 21st century and beyond. Sure, Republican senators like Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — so determined to ram through Kavanaugh before he's even heard one word of this woman's story, with their initial demands that Dr. Blasey testify only on their terms, at a date, time and place of their choosing — are executing a short-term and shortsighted political strategy. But more and more people, especially women, are seeing things for what they really are: An ancient patriarchy clinging to what it's always done in the past: Control the narratives of women.
Except there's good reason to believe that this time the creaky old gears of the patriarchy machine are finally breaking down, that Dr. Blasey will tell her story on her terms, on her chosen date, and with millions of women watching her back. Men are terrified.
The party of men: Kavanaugh fight risks worsening the Trump GOP’s gender problem
“The antipathy to Trump from women — college-educated, white, suburban women — transcends anything I’ve ever seen in politics,” Castellanos said. “And it’s not just against Trump’s policies, of course. It’s against Trump as the 1960s ‘Mad Men’ alpha male. It’s Trump who grabbed women where he shouldn’t. Women are coming out to vote against Donald Trump because they see him as a culturally regressive force that would undo the women’s march to equality.”
Kate Shaw/NY Times:
How Strong Does the Evidence Against Kavanaugh Need to Be?
Even if it wouldn’t support a criminal conviction or civil liability, a merely credible allegation is enough to disqualify him.
These allegations weren’t tested with the rigor that would have attached to judicial proceedings; neither evidence nor testimony (where it was given — Judge Ginsburg withdrew before testifying) was subject to the sort of adversarial testing that would occur in a court of law. But in each case, a constellation of considerations, both political and constitutional, operated to defeat nominations of individuals who were certainly qualified, by conventional metrics, to sit on the Supreme Court.
This context-dependent approach arguably leads to the conclusion that the existence of credible allegations against Judge Kavanaugh should be disqualifying, especially if further corroborating evidence emerges. That’s true even if the evidence wouldn’t support a criminal conviction or even civil liability.
I want to take a moment, now that Christine Blasey Ford has come forward to accuse Kavanaugh of assaulting her in high school, to talk about Gen X teens and sex. 1/
The idea that a teenaged Christine Blasey Ford would go to an adult to tell them what happened between her and Kavanaugh is all but ludicrous. That's not how it worked in the early 1980s. 2/
The concept of date rape barely existed, if at all. If you were drunk, and a guy forced himself on you, it was on you. Don't believe me? Watch Sixteen Candles. 3/
Sixteen Candles. Major hit of the 1980s. Contains a scene where two guys get a girl drunk, so one can sleep with her and get her underwear. This was a major hit. No one saw anything wrong with it.
Tom Nichols/NY Daily News:
A new cloud over Kavanaugh: What did he know about a slimy smear campaign?
What did Brett Kavanaugh know, and when did he know it? The answer to this question could be more important than anything President Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court has been asked until this very moment.
Democrats have a remarkable opportunity to reopen the question not only of Kavanaugh’s character, but of the character of the people he considers friends and close advisers, if they have the discipline and focus to seize this moment.
Eliot A. Cohen/Atlantic:
The Crisis of the American Elites
Judith Butler and Ed Whelan share little in common—save their willingness to direct cruelty against ordinary people in defense of eminent colleagues.
Of the many forms of cruelty, that directed against those who are weak or powerless is one of the worst. Of itself, it undermines whatever legitimacy a person can claim by virtue of intellectual or professional distinction. Societies and governments will have elites—that is simply inescapable, except perhaps in an ancient city state, and probably not even then. But in a free society, for those elites to exercise their power—their very real power, as those subject to it well know—they have to do so with restraint and good judgment. The alternative is, sooner or later, revolt, which is why higher education often finds itself battered by angry citizens who, in a different setting, conclude that the legal system, too, is rigged.
Kavanaugh kept at least one diary from 1982:
And more context from Henry Farrell/Vox, 2016:
How the Chris Hayes book Twilight of the Elites explains Trump's appeal
In the book, Hayes, the host of an MSNBC show and an editor at large for the Nation, argues that many middle-class people on both the left and right have come to believe that the system is unfair. Elites – including politicians, business figures, and prominent journalists — work to protect the privileges they and their kids enjoy. The gap between the mythology of America —that people can rise to the top through hard work and talent — and the reality of an unequal country is generating a political crisis, in which people lose their trust in institutions and become radicalized. (Full disclosure: Hayes is a friend, and I read and commented on an early version of the book.)
Now think Kavanaugh and his network. What happens at Georgetown Prep stays at Georgetown Prep. Ed Whelan’s botched smear job. Twilight of the elites, indeed.
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