…he said through grimly clenched teeth…
1 My pledge. That’s it. I’ve had it. Every single time I read or hear a reference to how women accusing men of sexual assault or harassment have a “right to be believed,” and anytime I read or hear someone quoting such a reference with approval, I’m going to point out in the strongest possible terms how sinister, unethical, and certifiably stupid this is. If you want to believe Dr. Ford’s dredged up memories of a party—somewhere—where she was jumped and groped by two drunk teens, go ahead. You do have a right to believe anything, including in the Hindu elephant god, the brilliance of Sean Hannity, and the virtue of Bill Clinton: I don’t care. Be gullible. Asserting that women have some special chromosome-based right to be judged 100% reliable when they make damning and destructive accusations against men violates all standards of logic, ethics, equal protection, fairness , justice and common sense, and threatens tangible harm to innocent citizens and society. It needs to be condemned, and those making it must be condemned until this insidious, ideologically-spawned Big Lie is killed, squashed, burned and vaporized for all time.
For some reason, the tipping point for me was not the nauseating conduct of the Democratic Senators yesterday, which included a dramatic multi-NO! from perhaps the worst of them—well, after Diane Feinstein—Hawaii Senator Mazie Hirono, the one who told Jake Tapper that the very fact of being a conservative is sufficient to disqualify Brett Kananaugh from any presumption of innocence. Stalin reasoned like that. That Hawaii would elect such an un-American, totalitarian-minded fool—she is more ignorant than evil, I think, but I could be wrong—to represent the state is enough to make me resolve to vacation elsewhere when the tropical breezes beckon. What a disgrace she is, and any voters who would allow someone like that to have access to power. But no, what made me snapo was a small note in today’s paper about how Rep. Leonard Nance’s race to be re-elected to his New Jersey Congressional seat was seen as threatened because he “seemed to cast doubt on Ms Blasey’s allegations” in remarks to a group of college Republicans.
What the hell? Her allegations are over three decades old, she never spoke of them until a SCOTUS nominee she opposed was about to be confirmed, she has no corroboration or evidence whatsoever, and the man she accused uncategorically denies her story under oath. There is nothing but doubt in this controversy. If you don’t see doubt, then you are a bigot, a hopelessly close-minded ideologue, or incapable of rational thought.
2. And speaking of a hopelessly close-minded ideologue who is incapable of rational thought: Peter Beinart. This guy, who I will mercilessly mock if I ever meet him for announcing months before the election that Hillary Clinton could not be defeated, has regular platforms for his knee-jerk, left-wing biased talking points on CNN (of course), the Atlantic, The Daily Beast and elsewhere. And here is a typical exhibit of his level of acumen and ethical mooring:
“I know many women–including in my family–who have been sexual assaulted + harassed. I don’t know a single man who has been falsely accused. Yes, it happens. But it’s extraordinarily rare. What she alleges is extraordinarily common. And he should get the benefit of the doubt?”
Isn’t that great? It begins with an appeal to his own authority based on anecdotal evidence, a compound fallacy, and ends by denying the basic right of any accused citizen to have the benefit of the doubt. Beinart is an ethics corrupter who uses his inexplicable influence to make his pre-conditioned progressive-leaning readers to be dumber, more ignorant, and less ethical.
3. “Bias makes you stupid” meets “Nah, there’s no mainstream media bias!” meets “Admit It…You’re The Bad Guys. It’s like “Frankenstein and the Wolf Man meets Dracula,” only real!
In the middle of yesterday’s hearing, a tweet from an account named “Alan Covington,” referencing a Wall Street Journal report, that Republicans had pulled a prosecutor who was questioning Brett Kavanaugh during his hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee because she had determined he had lied:
“Mitchell advised Republicans that to continue questioning Kavanaugh she was required by her oath in Arizona to inform Kavanaugh of his rights after he lied to her.”
Naturally, all manner of “resistance”-oriented unethical journalists and other accepted the tweet as fact, and retweeted it. Matt Yglesias of Vox. Jonathan Chait. The Nation’s Joshua Holland. The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake. And, of course, once-respected Harvard Law prof turned conspiracy theorist Larry Tribe.
Of course, once the story was shown to be completely fake, all of these and more apologized, but only after hundreds of thousands of Peter Beinarts who don’t think a judge with an unblemished record in his personal and public like deserves the benefit of the doubt accepted it as fact, and probably still do.
4. And another one! News outlets everywhere reported that the American Bar Association had “called Thursday evening for postponing a vote on Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court until sexual assault and misconduct allegations made by Christine Blasey Ford and others are investigated by the F.B.I,” as the New York Times put it. “The call for a pause is significant not just because of the bar association’s clout in the legal community, but because an A.B.A. committee had said unanimously a month ago that Judge Kavanaugh was “well qualified” for the Supreme Court, its highest possible designation.”
Senator Dick Durbin tweeted the news to the world. So did CNN. I just checked: this is still what the various Google links are reporting. It was not true. The Senate Judiciary Committee released a letter yesterday from the ABA. Robert Carlson, the president of the reliably liberal American Bar Association, sent the letter without going through the process of having it approved. He was, therefore, speaking for himself, not the organization. See?
Never mind. The news media doesn’t think that’s a distinction worth reporting.
Not to belabor a frightening and depressing point, but these are not just biased and dishonest people, they are dangerous and extremely unethical—yes, bad—people, and pretending otherwise because we wish it were not so just gives them more power to abuse.