Tuesday, October 2, 2018

“This man should not serve another day as any kind of judge” by Nathan J. Robinson


This is an exceptional analysis about Kavanaugh’s prevarications. Here are a few of the basic premises. Click on the complete article at the bottom.
“…[W]hen we examine the testimony of Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford honestly, impartially, and carefully, it is impossible to escape the following conclusions:
  1. Brett Kavanaugh is lying.
  2. There is no good reason to believe that Christine Blasey Ford is lying. This does not mean that she is definitely telling the truth, but that there is nothing      in what Kavanaugh said that in any way discredits her account.
“I want to show you, clearly and definitively, how Brett Kavanaugh has lied to you and lied to the Senate. I cannot prove that he committed sexual assault when he was 17, and I hesitate to draw conclusions about what happened for a few minutes in a house in Maryland in the summer of 1982. But I can prove quite easily that Kavanaugh’s teary-eyed “good, innocent man indignant at being wrongfully accused” schtick was a facade. What may have looked like a strong defense was in fact a very, very weak and implausible one.  
“…What does it say about this country that this is the state of our discourse? That Kavanaugh even stands any chance of being made one of the most powerful figures in the American government, with control over life and liberty? That a man like this is even a judge? He went before the United States Senate and showed total contempt for his vow to tell the truth. He attempted to portray a highly esteemed doctor as a crazy person, by consistently misrepresenting the evidence. He treated the public like we were idiots, like we wouldn’t notice as he pretended he was ralphing during Beach Week from too many jalapeños, as he feigned ignorance about sex slang, as he misread his own meticulously-kept 1982 summer calendar, as he replied to questions about his drinking habits by talking about church, as he suggested there are no alcoholics at Yale, as he denied knowing who ‘Bart O’Kavanaugh’ could possibly be based on, as he declared things refuted that weren’t actually refuted, as he claimed witnesses said things they didn’t say, as he failed to explain why nearly a dozen Yale classmates said he drank heavily, as he invented an imaginary drinking game to avoid admitting he had the mind of a sports jock in high school, as he said Ford had only accused him last week, as he responded to his roommate’s eyewitness statement with an incoherent story about furniture, as he pretended Bethesda wasn’t five miles wide, as he insisted Renate should be flattered by the ditty about how easy she was, as he declared that distinguished federal judges don’t commit sexual misconduct even though he had clerked for exactly such a judge. And what does it say about us, and our political system, that he might well get away with it?” (For the complete analysis of “How We Know Kavanaugh Is Lying” by Nathan J. Robinson, Click Here.

5 comments:

  1. “…Kavanaugh’s prepared testimony offers five core defenses against Ford’s allegations, which he enumerates.

    • First, he says, ‘let’s start with my career.’ Kavanaugh proceeds to list the various respectable positions he has held over the last three decades. He details all the background checks he has gone through, saying he has been ‘thoroughly vetted.’ And yet, he says, ‘throughout that entire time, throughout my 53 years and 7 months on this Earth, until last week, no one ever accused me of any kind of sexual misconduct.’ (Note here a small bonus lie: Ford alerted the U.S. Senate about her allegation in July, not ‘last week.’)
    • Second, he says, consider ‘specifics.’ Here he cites the uncorroborated nature of Ford’s account, the fact that Christine Ford did not go to a Catholic school, the lie that the allegation is ‘refuted,’ etc. We’ve gone through all of this.
    • Third is the part about not living especially near the country club, and the fact that Christine Ford can’t remember who took her from the country club to the party.
    • Fourth, he says, look at the calendars. We’ve looked at the calendars.
    • Fifth, he says, consider his character. Ford’s allegation is ‘radically inconsistent with my record and my character from my youth to the present day.’ This is where he discusses church and virginity and scholarly diligence. But he also has a long discussion of his public history with women. He talks about all his female friends. He quotes from three supportive texts he has received from women. He cites his history of giving opportunities to female law clerks, and the support they have shown him.

    “Much of the other text in Kavanaugh’s testimony is angry wind about how his life has been ruined, disgrace has been brought upon the august body of the Senate, the nation is going to hell in a handbasket, etc. Look, then, how little this all adds up to. When he addressed the specifics, he dissembled or stalled until the questioning Senator moved on or ran out of time. His character-based defense requires us to swallow obvious falsehoods.

    “What of his other main points? His distinguished career on the bench and his long record of employing women and being friends with women and coaching girls’ basketball and such. As to his time as a judge, I could mention that his record of judicial opinions suggest he is a man devoid of human empathy. But his atrocious jurisprudence seems to have become all but irrelevant to people at this point. Instead, I’d point out that this statement ignores the entire flood of concealed abuse by powerful people that has come out over the course of the MeToo movement. ‘If this allegation was true why didn’t it become a scandal earlier in my career?’ is what we might call the ‘Cosby defense’ or the ‘Weinstein defense.’ We know the answer to that question: because women aren’t believed, as evidenced by, well, the entire thing that’s happening right now in which Republicans are overlooking Kavanaugh’s endless disqualifying statements and calling a credible accusation a witch hunt..."

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  2. “…Kavanaugh says that as a federal judge, he has been investigated up and down. You know who else was a federal judge? Alex Kozinski, the judge Kavanaugh himself clerked for, who turned out to have engaged in decades of sexual harassment without consequence and who even assaulted a woman on live television without it impeding his career. Kavanaugh is not stupid, yet he defends himself with lines like ‘if such as thing had a happened, it would’ve been the talk of campus,’ even though it definitely wouldn’t since frat brothers engage in casual disgusting behavior all the time. And they get away with it, as Kavanaugh might be expected to have noticed, because of people like Kavanaugh’s former employer Ken Starr, who failed to investigate serious campus rape allegations when he served as a university president.

    “Kavanaugh must also know full well that men get away with sexual misbehavior for innumerable reasons: They can sue you, they can publicly discredit you, they can cause you to be inundated with death threats, they can make you a national punchline, they can beat the shit out of you. The reason women don’t report is precisely because they know uncorroborated allegations will be dismissed! They know that ‘I am a federal judge, therefore I would not do this’ somehow actually flies as a defense in the United States Senate!

    “Kavanaugh cites all the many women who say he’s wonderful, and his record of promoting women. But while this is respectable, we can’t treat it the way Kavanaugh wants us to treat it, i.e., as evidence that Ford’s accusation is ludicrous. How could an abuser be a public champion of women’s causes? I don’t know, ask Harvey Weinstein. Ask Eric Schneiderman. Both had prominent women who would have written them glowing recommendation letters! I’m not dismissing the ‘character evidence’ Kavanaugh wants us to consider. But I am saying that he’s trying to convince us of something we shouldn’t accept, namely that having lots of women support you means it’s outlandish to think that you could privately have abused someone.

    “As for Kavanaugh’s legions of devoted female employees, well, this should go without saying: ‘I’m not a sexist because I have many female subordinates’ should get you laughed out of the room. (Imagine Bill Clinton bragging about the female-friendly gender ratio of his White House internship program!) In fact, there are already female Yale Law graduates who say they were told in applying for clerkships that Kavanaugh liked his female clerks and he liked them with that Certain Look. Brett Kavanaugh may have treated every single female employee with the utmost respect. But their testimonials cannot be used to brand Ford a madwoman.

    “Alright, so Kavanaugh is a proven serial liar whose shocked, innocent presentation was obviously an act. What of Ford’s testimony? If we care about getting to the actual truth, we have to apply equal scrutiny to both sides. Ford cannot be believed merely because accepting her allegations as true would be politically advantageous. If she isn’t believable, the left needs to acknowledge that. But, well, read her testimony for yourself. Watch her answers to questions. See if you see the same tendencies that I’ve shown Kavanaugh demonstrated. See if you see tactics like changing the subject, answering a question with a question, playing dumb, bursting into tears and accusing critics of waging a conspiracy to destroy you, fabricating nonexistent corroboration, deleting inconvenient facts, and issuing an angry how-dare-you-sir every time things look dicey for you. All of this, as we have seen at exhaustive (and exhausting) length, is present throughout Kavanaugh’s testimony. Go and find similar reasons to doubt Ford…”

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  3. “…I am not actually trying here to prove that Christine Blasey Ford is telling the truth, even though I don’t think Kavanaugh or the Republicans have produced good arguments against her. The idea that her testimony is disproven by the calendars or the witness statements is false. The idea that Kavanaugh is an honest upstanding person who was a gentleman in high school is false. The primary Republican argument is that Ford cannot prove it, but it is very hard to prove a crime like this. I’m mainly interested, though, in showing that Kavanaugh isn’t telling the truth. Not because I am unfairly giving him higher scrutiny, but because he’s the one being considered for the Supreme Court, and if he’s lying, that should be the end of the issue as far as the Senate is concerned. Out he goes!

    “The Democratic senators were predictably useless in trying to figure out the answer to the simple question of whether Kavanaugh was telling lies. They left important questions unanswered, failed to pursue promising threads, and seemed to spend most of their questioning time arguing about whether and how there should be an FBI investigation into the allegations. But while the FBI investigation may turn up additional useful information, at this point there is absolutely no need for it unless Christine Blasey Ford wants it. It’s completely unnecessary in determining whether Brett Kavanaugh should be on the Supreme Court; even the very limited questions already asked of Kavanaugh have yielded disqualifying answers. Kavanaugh is lying, it’s provable, and that’s all there is to it. Unless you think it’s acceptable to have someone on the federal bench who treats duly sworn oaths as meaningless, the guy shouldn’t be holding any office.

    “I have mostly left out a significant fact here, which is that there are two other sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh. I haven’t covered this much because it wasn’t the subject of the hearing, but it’s incredibly important additional evidence! Deborah Ramirez says that Kavanaugh exposed himself to her when they were Yale undergraduates, and recalls him laughing as he zipped his pants. The New Yorker spoke to a Yale classmate who ‘confirmed having learned of the incident — and Judge Kavanaugh’s alleged role in it — within a day or two after it happened.’ Ramirez’s general reputation for honesty is backed up by other classmates, and Kavanaugh’s own ex-roommate has said he believes her. Swetnick’s accusations, which include what she describes as incidents of ‘gang rape,’ were dismissed out of hand by Republicans as both unfounded and too lurid and extreme to be true. (A future federal judge would never have been capable of such acts!) But while all we have to go on is her sworn affidavit, it’s worth remembering (1) that it’s a very serious matter to make these accusations in a sworn affidavit, and Swetnick is exposing herself to considerable legal penalties if she turns out to be lying and (2) that we actually do have a witness who says Mark Judge told her personally that he and other boys had taken turns having sex with a drunk woman. Judge’s ex-girlfriend, Elizabeth Rasor, said that she couldn’t ‘stand by and watch him lie’ and suggest Georgetown Prep was a sexually innocent place. ‘Mark told me a very different story,’ she said..."

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  4. “...As I say, Swetnick’s allegations are indeed incredibly serious and it’s reasonable to demand evidence beyond her word before accepting them (though not before investigating them). But given that, in Kavanaugh’s own words, ‘what happened at Georgetown Prep stays at Georgetown Prep—and that’s a good thing’ (which is a kidding-but-not-kidding way of confirming that there is a code of silence around misbehavior), there is no reason to dismiss them merely because they stayed under wraps until Kavanaugh became a national figure…

    “In the morning, writer Kyle Smith said, Ford had seemed credible. But after lunch, the great and esteemed judge took his seat, and with fierce logical precision and booming righteous indignation, laid the matter to rest once and for all. No more would there be a question: It would be a travesty of justice not to appoint this man to the Supreme Court…”

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  5. From Joni Lindgren:

    “I would never vote for Kavanaugh because he is funded by the Koch Brothers’ Political Action Committee, and Republican Senators are paid off for their confirmation vote. The Koch Brothers are stacking the deck against ‘We the People!’ Their goal is to get a judge on the bench who will ALWAYS vote in favor of corporate interests. Kavanaugh is everything corporate. He is also anti-women, anti-worker, and anti-environment... I would also vote NO because of his snarling and belittling sense of entitlement! This was a job interview, and he blew it!”—Joni

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