Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Idiot Confirmation Hearings

Judge Samuel Alito got confirmed as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court yesterday. If there was any question as to where he is in terms of judicial ideology, it was answered in his first act -- he turned down a death row appeal of an inmate from "The Killing State" called Texas.

I'm not happy Alito got confirmed -- I don't share his judicial philosophy. On the other hand, he is eminently qualified to be a Supreme Court justice. He has been on the Court of Appeals for 15 years, his opinions are well-crafted, and he has the requisite judicial temperament. Yes, he's conservative. What other philisophy should I have expected from Bush?

I was troubled about his promoting his membership in Concerned Alumni of Princeton. I think he was doing that to boost his standing with the Reagan administration. I don't think he shares the group's values. But, his answer to the questions about his membership in the group strained credulity, which makes you wonder about the truthfulness of his other answers.

But, far more troubling than Alito's confirmation was the circus called the hearings. What a joke! With the exception of Russ Feingold, just about every other Senator came off looking bad. You had Jeff Sessions, sounding and acting like Forrest Gump ("My mama said that judges are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you are gonna get."). You had Joe Biden, who apparently needed another seat for his ego ("Judge, let's not talk about you. Let's talk about me."). You had Lindsey Graham, the self-appointed cheerleader for Alito ("Judge Alito, you haven't foamed at the mouth during these hearings. How could anyone think that you don't deserve to be on the Supreme Court?"). Finally, there was Ted Kennedy, who finally was able to articulate a complete sentence ("And I will bring this up again and again and again.").

These are the times that I have to take comfort in Winston Churchill's proclamation about democracy -- it is the worst of all types of governments, except for all other kinds.


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