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The Future of the Supreme Court (Page 9)
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subego  (op)
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Sep 28, 2020, 11:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Under the circumstances there is more than enough evidence to call his suitability for the highest court into question. Shouldn't there be a really high standard for a position like that? I don't think we should need enough to get a conviction in this instance.
With the Ford case, the relevant evidence can be summarized in two sentences.

Ford isn’t lying.

Literally every other piece of evidence not only fails to corroborate Ford’s claim, it actively contradicts her.

This dilemma does not have a simple and obvious solution.
     
Waragainstsleep
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Sep 29, 2020, 04:29 AM
 
Don't forget its not a prosecution. The burden need not be so strict as if it were.
I had a quick google to refresh my memory but didn't have hours to read long, dry articles. Exactly how much evidence contradicted her? Because it doesn't seem like there was a whole lot of room in her account for it to be contradicted.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 1, 2020, 08:59 PM
 
Here’s the shortest summary I can make.

There’s no evidence of a repeat offense, and people were like, really, really looking.

If Kavanaugh is guilty, his choice of plea maximized the number of federal crimes he needed to commit, while also maximizing the chance of being proven a liar. Kavanaugh entered his plea before evidence gathering was complete, so he would have had no clue how strong the case against him was.

Ford’s friend, who Ford named as a witness, insists she never met Kavanaugh, insists she wasn’t at the party, and gives reasons for why she would remember if she was.
( Last edited by subego; Oct 1, 2020 at 10:19 PM. )
     
Waragainstsleep
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Oct 2, 2020, 01:50 AM
 
Hmm.

Lack of evidence is never evidence.
Your plea is not evidence either. Confidence in your own acquittal might mean you're innocence, but it might also mean you've stacked the deck, disposed of all your skeletons and/or adequately paid off anyone you need to like witnesses.

So you have one witness who would likely only have witnessed the victim being present at an event that arguably anyone not involved in the crime directly might struggle to distinguish from 100 similar events that they attended several decades ago.
Do you remember in detail every time you went somewhere with a group of people and had a few drinks while you were a teenager or student? Do you remember everyone you ever met at every house party? i certainly don't.

Its hardly airtight is it?
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Oct 2, 2020, 09:17 AM
 
None of kavanaugh's friends would testify, for fear of incriminating themselves.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 3, 2020, 12:44 AM
 
They didn’t testify in person, but they gave statements.

If those were false, it’s perjury. Lying to a Senate investigation is illegal, even without an oath.
     
Waragainstsleep
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Oct 3, 2020, 04:33 AM
 
I'm curious: Is the prevailing opinion that the Democratic party went rummaging around for someone they could use to falsely accuse Kavanaugh? Or that Ford took it upon herself to be a Democrat hero in making the allegation?

Either sounds a bit more far fetched than a bunch of entitled trust-fund brats covering each others' asses.
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Waragainstsleep
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Oct 3, 2020, 04:34 AM
 
Much easier to lie in a statement than in person too. Can't be cross-examined that way.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 3, 2020, 09:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I'm curious: Is the prevailing opinion that the Democratic party went rummaging around for someone they could use to falsely accuse Kavanaugh? Or that Ford took it upon herself to be a Democrat hero in making the allegation?

Either sounds a bit more far fetched than a bunch of entitled trust-fund brats covering each others' asses.
The vast majority of Kavanaugh supporters think it was a hit-job.

This is because the evidence it was a hit-job is direct, and thus immediately apparent, while the evidence it’s not is circumstantial.

People are biased against circumstantial evidence, and this includes Ford supporters. Most who support Ford aren’t even aware this evidence exists, so there’s no surprise the people who don’t support her are likewise unaware.

The press can’t really get it out there without looking like they’re trying to be Ford’s attorney, so it stayed buried.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 4, 2020, 04:31 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Confidence in your own acquittal might mean you're innocence, but it might also mean you've stacked the deck, disposed of all your skeletons and/or adequately paid off anyone you need to like witnesses.
For Kavanaugh to be confident in his acquittal, he needs to convince three people to commit a federal crime, while himself committing multiple federal crimes...

Over an appointment.

Isn’t that asking me to believe a lot?
     
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Oct 4, 2020, 05:57 AM
 
It is equally jumping to conclusions if you think that any woman wants to go in public to air unfounded accusations of attempted rape. Especially when public literally means millions of people rather than a local community. This is a far bigger hurdle. I also don’t think Kavanaugh needs to conspire with others for others to give testimony on his behalf.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 4, 2020, 06:15 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
It is equally jumping to conclusions if you think that any woman wants to go in public to air unfounded accusations of attempted rape.
This is not my conclusion. I have already stated Ford isn’t lying.

Ford’s friend testified on Kavanaugh’s behalf, days after Kavanaugh entered his plea. How could Kavanaugh have been confident she would testify this way without a conspiracy?
     
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Oct 4, 2020, 07:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The vast majority of Kavanaugh supporters think it was a hit-job.
I'm thinking Kavanaugh doesn't really have his own supporters outside of family and friends. Those are Trump supporters who will go along with literally anything he says or does.

Are you a Kavanaugh supporter? Because you seem to think its a hit-job.

Originally Posted by subego View Post
This is because the evidence it was a hit-job is direct, and thus immediately apparent, while the evidence it’s not is circumstantial.
I'm not seeing anything I would characterise as direct. Direct evidence of a hit job would be a recording or testimony of Ford and other democrats plotting to lie in order to discredit Kavanaugh.
What you have is some weak evidence that fails to corroborate Ford's story. How is that any less circumstantial?

Originally Posted by subego View Post
The press can’t really get it out there without looking like they’re trying to be Ford’s attorney, so it stayed buried.
Is there something you have yet to unearth for us?

Originally Posted by subego View Post
For Kavanaugh to be confident in his acquittal, he needs to convince three people to commit a federal crime, while himself committing multiple federal crimes...

Over an appointment.

Isn’t that asking me to believe a lot?
An appointment that represents the absolute pinnacle of his career path and the opportunity to influence the laws governing over 300m people in ways that will earn him the unparalleled respect of his peers. I imagine it pays ok too.

Wealth, fame, respect, your name in the history books and tremendous power. Its not like people have killed for less than any one of those....

Did those three have to lie? Or did some of them simply have to not know anything relevant? And those who lied, was one of them not protecting himself from a worse indictment than perjury? And I'm guessing at least two out of three were Kavanaugh's friends/frat brothers/fellow members of The Skulls or some other ridiculous secret society

Originally Posted by subego View Post
This is not my conclusion. I have already stated Ford isn’t lying.

Ford’s friend testified on Kavanaugh’s behalf, days after Kavanaugh entered his plea. How could Kavanaugh have been confident she would testify this way without a conspiracy?
Given the allegation, that one girl at a house party went upstairs, was pushed into a room by two guys, assaulted, then escaped and ran out of the house, what would you expect witnesses to see even with perfect recall?

If you were downstairs, you might or might not have seen a girl run past and out the door. At a party that could be someone doing any number of silly innocent or inconspicuous things, so how memorable would it be? Now add booze and decades to obscure that completely inconsequential memory that likely blends in with dozens of other summer days or nights.

Not knowing who was there (including yourself) is not suspicious. Not knowing what happened in a room upstairs is not suspicious, its expected. Not remembering a girl run past in a flash while you were doing something else entirely and half cut is also more expected than suspicious.

And frankly, being a respected left-leaning lawyer or judge makes you infinitely more trustworthy than anyone a Republican would nominate to the SC, let alone someone Trump would pick.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 5, 2020, 11:05 AM
 
My apologies. This week is a mess, so it’ll take me a bit to work up a comprehensive reply.
     
Waragainstsleep
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Oct 6, 2020, 04:21 AM
 
No rush. None of this is really topical any more.
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Oct 6, 2020, 03:59 PM
 
I think it's interesting to look back with the benefit of highsight and distance and take another look at this sort of thing, just like the police shootings. In the midst of it, so much junk is being thrown around it's hard to tell what's true. Time gives the opportunity to suss out the truth.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 6, 2020, 05:06 PM
 
Absolutely. I only half paid attention at the time, and wasn’t able to pull a signal out of the noise. I had guesses, but not much else.

Further, with this specific case, a lot of digging went on after the confirmation.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 7, 2020, 10:11 AM
 
To get some of my response out...

I don’t think it was a hit-job. As I said before, Ford’s not lying about the assault.

Ford did lie about a bunch of other things to the Senate panel. I misspoke when I said there’s direct evidence of a hit-job. There’s direct evidence Ford’s a liar.

This did initially give me the impression it was a hit-job. In the beginning, I thought the only evidence I was supposed to consider was the word of a known liar, which is such a ridiculous premise upon which to convict, my conclusion was shenanigans. I think most Kavanaugh supporters bailed right here. The only reason I didn’t was a vague feeling that didn’t fully add up.

What finally convinced me she’s not lying about the assault were notes from her therapy sessions, and her desire to remain anonymous.

The press reported both these things, so I didn’t dig up anything new, but the conclusion these two pieces of evidence mean she’s not lying about the assault requires a bunch of inferences. The press can’t really make those inferences without drifting into an editorial, so they didn’t.
( Last edited by subego; Oct 7, 2020 at 10:25 AM. )
     
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Oct 7, 2020, 01:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
To get some of my response out...
I feel like at the time there were lots of questions about his shaky judicial record being thrown around. Lots of petitions signed by fellow judges and the like saying that he was unfit due to bad judgement. Did any of that hold up or was that more partisan grandstanding that my echo chamber loved showing me?
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 8, 2020, 04:11 AM
 
I’ve only been looking into the assault and harassment allegations.

Did a quick search and found an open letter from people at Yale. Read the opinions from the first case they cited, which was about abortion.


Undocumented Mexican teenager who was two months pregnant got caught right after she crossed the border. It’s unclear whether she crossed the border to get an abortion, or was aware she was pregnant.

Either way, while in custody, she was told she was pregnant, and asked for an abortion. Government said no. After five weeks or so in custody, during which the government could not find a sponsor to release her to, a lawsuit was filed to get her the abortion.

During that trial, the government said they think they can find her a sponsor to which she can be released within a week-and-a-half. The three judge panel said she had to wait at least that long before getting the abortion.

A few days later, the appeal showed up on the docket for the court Kavanaugh served on. He sided with the panel.


I'm not sure Kavanaugh and the panel were wrong, per se, but they were definitely being harsh about it. They didn’t seem to give any weight to the five weeks it took before the complaint was filed. Also, the fact she was a minor (17) seemed to make them hinky about the situation for ill-defined reasons.


As an aside, the majority opinion took a bunch of direct swipes at Kavanaugh and the panel who made the original decision, basically calling them idiots. It was like a lefty version of something Scalia would write.
( Last edited by subego; Oct 8, 2020 at 05:21 AM. )
     
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Oct 8, 2020, 05:24 PM
 
We have the thread from Kavanaugh's hearing...

Kavanaugh is another rw judge who SAYS they won't contest established law... but once in place behaves exactly as you think they would. They are Lucy with the football.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 9, 2020, 01:03 AM
 
Which example grinds your gears? I’ll law clerk it up and we can have a stare decisis deathmatch.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 14, 2020, 07:21 AM
 
Sorry I’ve been delinquent, but I thought this was an interesting tidbit.

I was told Ted Cruz said in a podcast that Supreme Court hearings, for both Democrats and Republicans, exist solely for senators to grandstand to their constituents.
     
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Oct 14, 2020, 08:32 AM
 
And Ted would never project.
[set curmudgeon_mode=1]
     
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Sorry I’ve been delinquent, but I thought this was an interesting tidbit.

I was told Ted Cruz said in a podcast that Supreme Court hearings, for both Democrats and Republicans, exist solely for senators to grandstand to their constituents.
Are conformation hearings even required?
     
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I was told Ted Cruz said in a podcast that Supreme Court hearings, for both Democrats and Republicans, exist solely for senators to grandstand to their constituents.
I think that’s a self-serving explanation.
The GOP is the proximate cause for the politicization of judicial appointments: for many, many years they have campaigned on appointing conservative judges to federal courts, especially the Supreme Court. The Republicans have spent the last few years packing federal courts (and kinda ironic that they start squealing when the Democrats suggest increasing the size of SCOTUS*). In the past, there were balancing mechanisms like the blue slip and just more bipartisanship — you didn’t just appoint conservative hardliners, but as part of bipartisan compromises a mixture. This is far healthier for a democracy, too. But all of this was dismantled. Am I claiming it is 100 % the GOP’s fault? Nope. But 80-90 %.

* I’m not in favor of increasing the number of Supreme Court justices, I think other reforms are better. Term limits are a must IMHO, 10 years perhaps. And other reforms are more important, e. g. making all American territories and DC into states.
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
Are conformation hearings even required?
That’s the procedure for appointing federal judges. These are of course only rules made by the Senate for the Senate, so I reckon they could be changed. But perhaps that change would require 60 votes, so changing these rules would amount to abandoning the filibuster. This is just speculation on my part, though.
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:28 AM
 
I was surprised to learn you could become a supreme court justice with so little years experience. Then google told me some SC justices were never judges before, or even lawyers. History be crazy.

I think there should be a 10 years of experience rule for the Supreme Court.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I think that’s a self-serving explanation.
The GOP is the proximate cause for the politicization of judicial appointments: for many, many years they have campaigned on appointing conservative judges to federal courts, especially the Supreme Court. The Republicans have spent the last few years packing federal courts (and kinda ironic that they start squealing when the Democrats suggest increasing the size of SCOTUS*). In the past, there were balancing mechanisms like the blue slip and just more bipartisanship — you didn’t just appoint conservative hardliners, but as part of bipartisan compromises a mixture. This is far healthier for a democracy, too. But all of this was dismantled. Am I claiming it is 100 % the GOP’s fault? Nope. But 80-90 %.

* I’m not in favor of increasing the number of Supreme Court justices, I think other reforms are better. Term limits are a must IMHO, 10 years perhaps. And other reforms are more important, e. g. making all American territories and DC into states.
What does that have to do with hearings?
     
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
What does that have to do with hearings?
You cited Senator Cruz as saying that hearings were just about grandstanding.

I'm saying this is a recent development due to the GOP's sustained efforts to push through judicial appointments. So rather than approving judges (almost unanimously as was the case with Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia), they have become partisan affairs.
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Oct 14, 2020, 10:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi View Post
I was surprised to learn you could become a supreme court justice with so little years experience. Then google told me some SC justices were never judges before, or even lawyers. History be crazy.

I think there should be a 10 years of experience rule for the Supreme Court.
If this were a saner world, we could have a nuanced discussion about this. For example, I don't necessarily think all Supreme Court judges must have experience as judges. Why not appoint e. g. a public defender? Ideally, the Supreme Court should have a wide gamut of experiences and intellectual schools of thought.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 14, 2020, 11:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
You cited Senator Cruz as saying that hearings were just about grandstanding.

I'm saying this is a recent development due to the GOP's sustained efforts to push through judicial appointments. So rather than approving judges (almost unanimously as was the case with Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia), they have become partisan affairs.
The partisanship began with Roberts, 15 years ago. It wasn’t the GOP who had a problem with that nomination.

The GOP also spiked Miers.
     
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Oct 15, 2020, 01:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The partisanship began with Roberts, 15 years ago. It wasn’t the GOP who had a problem with that nomination.
It started way earlier than that. The Blue Slip custom started changing in the early 2000s if memory serves. Another significant factor, which has nothing to do with confirmations, was that many self-proclaimed conservatives were unhappy that the judges a Republican president appointed “turned liberal” or “were more liberal”, so despite the GOP appointing the vast number of SCOTUS justices the court was too liberal for their liking. The conservative electorate and elected officials conflated conservative political opinions with conservative jurisprudence. That is despite the GOP filling the vast number of recent SCOTUS vacancies. This is where organizations like The Federalist Society come into play, which are now breeding federal judges for the GOP. I read somewhere that 80 % of the federal judges Trump has appointed have been vetted and approved of by The Federalist Society. Also Roberts was (is?) affiliated to The Federalist Society. Overall, judgeships, especially on the Supreme Court have become a more and more important campaign tool for the Republican Party. And conservative groups have build organizations around that.

Judgeships have become increasingly important for the GOP and they have been willing to play increasingly more and more hardball to get their way. I think only now are Democrats focussing on the courts, after all the last candidate the Democrats proposed was a compromise candidate, a centrist with impeccable credentials.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The GOP also spiked Miers.
Yes, and? O'Connor's seat was filled with Samuel Alito instead who is considered to be the most conservative judge on the Supreme Court at the moment. So it is not as if the GOP compromised and found a more centrist replacement for Harriet Miers.
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subego  (op)
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Oct 15, 2020, 04:41 AM
 
Anyone who considers Alito to be the most conservative justice on the court has never read a Thomas opinion.

Bush’s pick to replace O’Connor was Roberts, who’s a centrist. The only reason he didn’t fill O’Connor’s seat was because Rehnquist, who wasn’t a centrist, died before Roberts was confirmed.

Blue slips have no bearing on hearings for a Supreme Court nominee.
     
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Oct 15, 2020, 08:47 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Anyone who considers Alito to be the most conservative justice on the court has never read a Thomas opinion.
If the best argument is that you think Thomas is more conservative, then I’d say Alito is pretty conservative Let’s settle and call the two collectively the most conservative judges. My point is Alito was not a centrist compromise candidate. Agreed?
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Bush’s pick to replace O’Connor was Roberts, who’s a centrist. The only reason he didn’t fill O’Connor’s seat was because Rehnquist, who wasn’t a centrist, died before Roberts was confirmed.
Yes, Roberts is the Chief Justice, which means he has succeeded former Chief Justice Rehnquist, and Alito succeeded O’Connor. Isn’t the latter exactly what I wrote?

I also would not call Roberts a centrist in the grand scheme of things. The Supreme Court is tilting very far to the right, because in recent years Republican Presidents (i. e. Bush 2 and Trump) have nominated ideologically more conservative judges. O’Connor, for example, was a moderate Republican, nominated by Reagan. And there is less ideological diversity, given their ties to The Federalist Society (including Roberts). Roberts is surely less conservative than the last two (soon probably three) appointees, yes, but that’s only because the mean has moved to the right.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Blue slips have no bearing on hearings for a Supreme Court nominee.
I’m taking a larger view here of all federal judicial appointments, because I see this as an overarching strategic goal of the GOP. Just have a look at how many federal judges the Trump administration has appointed compared with the Obama administration. That matters not only because federal judges get to have a final say on most things (as only a vanishing small number of cases are heard in front of the Supreme Court), but also because federal courts are the proving ground for many future Supreme Court justices.

It is also important to include other federal judgeships to see the larger pattern for what it is. Blue slips and other mechanisms that were meant to increase bipartisanship and balance have eroded over time, and this was not a process that was solely due to one appointment or so.
( Last edited by OreoCookie; Oct 15, 2020 at 09:01 AM. )
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Oct 16, 2020, 02:30 PM
 
I agree Alito wasn’t the centrist candidate. Roberts was.

IMO...

Roberts and O’Connor are centrists.
Alito and Rehnquist are conservatives.

In other words, this didn’t change the balance of the court. The order they were seated doesn’t matter.

Along those lines...

Gorsuch and Scalia are conservatives.
Kavanaugh and Kennedy are centrists.

They didn’t change the balance of the court either.

Barrett will be the first change in balance. I predict she’ll be centrist to Ginsburg’s liberal.

We can agree to disagree on this breakdown, but since this is how I see it, I don’t really see partisan ****ery going on. Even with Barrett. Assuming my feelings on her are correct, she’s the Republican version of Garland. In other words, about as good as you can expect from an opposition pick.

The difference being Garland didn’t have the votes to get confirmed.

As for blue slips, we can discuss those, but they don’t have anything to do with Supreme Court hearings, which is what Zodiac Killer was on about.
( Last edited by subego; Oct 16, 2020 at 05:35 PM. )
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 16, 2020, 02:34 PM
 
This was awesome.

     
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Oct 16, 2020, 02:57 PM
 
The internet enjoys such a gift. My most favorite photoshop had the cover of the Handmaid's Tale.
     
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Oct 16, 2020, 03:07 PM
 
Sadly, the only one I’ve seen was dickbutt.
     
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Oct 16, 2020, 05:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Thorzdad View Post
And Ted would never project.
The outcomes on these things are almost always pre-determined. I’m not sure what else there actually is for any of them to do.
     
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Oct 16, 2020, 08:45 PM
 
As is the problem with twitter, I can't find the thread I was on with the really good ones.

This thread has mostly tame ones:
https://twitter.com/MSNBC/status/1316076754755293185



Unfortunately, the right also has photoshop but it's the usual neener-neener stuff.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 16, 2020, 08:50 PM
 
I... don’t get it.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 17, 2020, 07:15 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Given the allegation, that one girl at a house party went upstairs, was pushed into a room by two guys, assaulted, then escaped and ran out of the house, what would you expect witnesses to see even with perfect recall?

If you were downstairs, you might or might not have seen a girl run past and out the door. At a party that could be someone doing any number of silly innocent or inconspicuous things, so how memorable would it be? Now add booze and decades to obscure that completely inconsequential memory that likely blends in with dozens of other summer days or nights.

Not knowing who was there (including yourself) is not suspicious. Not knowing what happened in a room upstairs is not suspicious, its expected. Not remembering a girl run past in a flash while you were doing something else entirely and half cut is also more expected than suspicious.

And frankly, being a respected left-leaning lawyer or judge makes you infinitely more trustworthy than anyone a Republican would nominate to the SC, let alone someone Trump would pick.
I’ll tackle this part first. Here is the relevant information.

If I understand correctly, Ford claimed it was a small party, consisting of the named witnesses, and perhaps one other person Ford doesn’t remember.

Ford’s friend claims at the time she had a driver’s license and a car, while Ford did not. In other words, Ford’s friend would have had to be Ford’s transportation.

Ford’s friend argues she would indeed remember if instead of driving Ford home that night, Ford suddenly left, drunk and on foot, 20 miles from home.

Though Ford’s friend did not mention this, it would also entail Ford leaving her friend alone with a bunch of rapists.
     
andi*pandi
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Oct 17, 2020, 12:30 PM
 
Even if you haven't read/watched The Handmaid's Tale, surprised you don't get the references?
https://www.hulu.com/series/the-hand...c-40f8a137ce5f
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Handmaid%27s_Tale

season 1 matches up roughly with Margaret Atwood's book. In a future dystopia, a plague has rendered most of the population infertile, the religious fringe has taken over the government and made sexual servitude law.

I haven't watched the other seasons because there's only so much dark cautionary future dystopia you can handle.
     
subego  (op)
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Oct 18, 2020, 03:44 AM
 
I saw the movie back in the 90s, but everything got knocked loose from my brain, including that line.

Growing up during the end of the Cold War made my dystopias crossed with feminism look more like this...




In the 80s, not only did we think women would be combat troops 15 years down the line, we thought they’d be combat troops with big hair.
( Last edited by subego; Oct 18, 2020 at 04:04 AM. )
     
 
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