A Side Benefit of the I.R.S. Scandal: Self-Identification By Dishonest Partisan Hacks

You know better, Gov.

You know better, Governor.

I mentioned this once already, but it bears repeating: any spinner, excuser, minimizer or defender of the I.R.S. scandal who uses the “it was a Bush appointee” talking point has insulted your intelligence or impugned his own, as well as marked himself or herself as an untrustworthy hack. I’m taking names and making lists myself now, and it’s growing by the hour.

Yesterday I added Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, whom I once believed had some integrity, and Donna Brazile. Today Richard Cohen, among others, joined the list. It really is shocking, and it’s increasingly more difficult to shock me. It is also ominous. Things we haven’t yet learned must really be ugly for such a transparently desperate excuse to be trotted out so early by people who almost certainly know what garbage it is.

Yesterday I heard Rendell literally drive Joe DiGenova, the former Attorney General, to apoplexy—Joe’s eyes were popping out of his head and I though he was going to fall over to the floor foaming at the mouth— by stating repeatedly that the I.R.S. fiasco “couldn’t be a conspiracy because a Bush appointee was in charge.” This is either unbelievably ignorant or despicably dishonest, and I suspect the latter. As I wrote in a previous post, Continue reading

Supreme Court Integrity and the Useless Times-CBS Poll

If you dislike these people,but haven’t read their actual opinions, don’t know their names and are basing your opinion on what other people say, I don’t care what you think, and neither should anyone else.

I suppose there may be could be some uses for the recent New York Times-CBS poll measuring public attitudes about the Supreme Court. It could be used to launch, for example, a discussion about how little the public understands about the Court and how it operates. It might prompt a discussion about the recklessness of the two parties, which regularly attack the integrity of the Court every time it arrives at a decision that one of them doesn’t like. It might even prompt a refresher course on what went on during the 2000 Florida vote recount, and why that case required the Supreme Court to play a unique role that had nothing to do with helping George Bush “steal the election.” All of these would require an unformed and responsible newsmedia. however, so what the poll is prompting instead  misleading debates among talking heads about what the Court needs to do differently.

The Supreme Court needs to do nothing at all differently. Continue reading

Ethics Quote of the Week: Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell

“That doesn’t matter. What matters is that he delivers.”

—-Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell on the “Morning Joe” show on MSNBC, discussing his (and President Obama’s) support for Sen. Arlen Specter, who is locked in a dead-heat race for re-nomination with challenging Congressman Joe Sestak. Continue reading