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    Armchair philosopher, politically-incorrect political commentator, raconteur, retired air traffic controller, dilettante truck driver, US Army veteran, recluse, sometime-writer, redneck convert neè Buckeye, ne'er-do-well, bon vivant, unrepentant libertine, unapologetic libertarian, and (of course) curmudgeon…

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Elena Kagan: Is she—or isn’t she?

Posted by The Curmudgeon on May 17, 2010

uh…what was the question, again?

It’s said that revenge is a dish best served cold.

Irony, on the other hand, is delicious any time—and we should take time to thank those in Washington who keep us well-fed.

Take, for example, the latest nominee for the Supreme Court. Serving-up Elena Kagan as his latest hors d’œuvre, Barack Obama has once again replenished the buffet.

In a somewhat questionable move, Obama purposefully sought-out a candidate with no judicial background. While this approach is not in and of itself without precedent (nor logic), it does invite some skepticism—particularly with the memory still fresh of George W. Bush’s ill-fated nomination of Harriet Miers.

Naturally, Kagan’s supporters hastily moved to discount comparisons to Miers—with some validity. While there are similarities between the two candidates, there are also some differences; yet to be determined, of course, is the extent that one may be distinguished from the other.

The salient issue accompanying the nomination of any non-judge is the lack of a “paper trail”—a history of rulings, decisions, and opinions by which a nominee’s legal and judicial philosophy might be revealed. While neither Miers or Kagan ever served as a judge, Kagan’s career has differed in being essentially confined to politics and academia (notwithstanding a short-lived foray into private practice about which we know nothing)—and her supporters would have us believe that there exist sufficient intellectual and academic works to shed light on her views.

Now, at this point, it should be noted that Kagan will almost certainly be confirmed. It’s a matter of simple arithmetic; Democrats hold more seats than do Republicans, and there doesn’t appear to be any enthusiasm for a filibuster. Absent a gaffe of historic proportions, she’ll get the job.

…and at this point, a question is posed to the reader: Upon seeing the title of this piece, what did you think it’d be about?

You might have wondered: Is she or isn’t she what? A liberal? A conservative? A socialist?

Or you might have mused: Is she or isn’t she what? A lesbian?

You might even have wondered: Is she or isn’t she what? An activist eager to “legislate from the bench?”

And so we arrive at one of two points this piece is intended to advance: We know virtually nothing about this woman. And the long history of academic works alluded to by her supporters? Well, it simply isn’t there. Indeed, after leaving a previous post in the Clinton administration, she was denied re-entry to her tenured position at the University of Chicago owing to the paucity of her works—and her original tenure was bestowed despite objections that she simply hadn’t published enough, even then. She is a tangled collection of contradictions and blank pages—and little else.

In many ways, Kagan serves as the perfect symbol for the Obama regime itself. Like Kagan, we didn’t know a whole lot about Obama, either—until he got elected. Prior to taking up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, he kept himself shrouded in secrecy (in truth, he still does). The strategy is clear—and likely to be adopted by others with designs on high office: reveal as little as is absolutely necessary about yourself, lest that knowledge be used against you. (It’s difficult to assail a record that is essentially non-existent.)

The obvious drawback to nominating a candidate with such a blank slate is that it arouses suspicion—particularly when that appointment is made by a White House with the track record that Obama’s has, with its rogue’s gallery of tax cheats, socialists, incompetents, and thugs named to key posts.

For her own part, Kagan seems to be acting in concert with the White House to preserve that veil of secrecy. (The White House released a video of an “interview” that seems to have answered nothing and fooled no one—not even the mainstream media upon which Obama depends so heavily. Does the term “propaganda” come to mind?)

Even Kagan’s supporters have trouble grappling with her true leanings—regardless of the issue. Liberals complain that she’s too conservative (big surprise, there), while conservatives point out her apparent hostility toward the military and embracing of homosexual-rights issues as evidence of her liberal stance. Her advice to then-President Bill Clinton to not endorse late-term abortions is cited as evidence of her relative conservatism. How naive. She made that recommendation only to preserve a political compromise; failure to have done so would’ve risked that compromise being supplanted by a much more conservative (and likely veto-proof) measure being forced by Republicans in Congress. That she eventually allowed military recruiters back on campus at Harvard (she herself ejected them, citing the military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy) is offered in response to accusations that she’s hostile toward the armed forces; this claim ignores the fact that she “let” them come back only after being forced to do so by a Supreme Court decision—and that she encouraged student protests even while she was opening the doors to the recruiters.

And now to return to my favorite point of this missive: that delicious irony.

Let’s face it: This Kagan episode is rich with it. Personally, I’m reveling in it.

Consider, for example, the quandary facing (or that should be facing) Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), who loudly lamented the lack of a paper trail for Harriet Miers (read: There’s no record to attack.) . Kagan’s tabula rasa, on the other hand, he finds much less disturbing. Go figure.

More irony: Concealing so much about Kagan in an effort to preempt criticism actually led to more criticism as people filled in the blanks.

Think about Obama’s position. He’s being assailed by his leftist supporters for not being liberal enough (as if ); at the same time, conservatives are unlikely to embrace anyone liberal enough to suit him. True to form, then, he seeks out someone he thinks will be liberal enough to meet his standards and mollify the left, but about whom no one really knows anything for certain—fueling further speculation from the right. And this speculation cannot be decisively addressed for want of the very paper trail that Obama sought to avoid in the first place (Oh, what a tangled web we weave…).

With apologies to masculine-appearing women everywhere, one cannot help but wonder about Kagan; sorry, but this broad reminds one of a knock-down version of Rosie O’Donnell—or perhaps leads one to believe that the Washington Redskins have lost track of one of their linebackers. Not surprisingly, it was soon revealed that there have long been rumors that she’s a lesbian. The White House quickly issued a denial—but it hasn’t gone unnoticed that there now seems to be a mission underway to make her appear more feminine. And as if by magic, friends of Kagan began cropping-up in the press to also deny those rumors.

…which led to yet another ironic predicament for Obamazoids.

Equally magical was the universal realization that issuing strong denials in an effort to buttress support for Kagan risked alienating the homosexual community—overwhelmingly liberal, Democrat, and pro-Obama. What ensued strongly resembled an old episode of Seinfeld, as those strong denials suddenly became strong denials immediately followed by a qualifier: “No, she’s not a lesbian. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. If it were true. Which it isn’t.”

Sadly, while this unfolding drama provides grand political theater, it’d be easy to overlook Kagan’s potential influence over future Supreme Court decisions; given her relative youth, it’s not unreasonable to anticipate her hanging-on for thirty years or more. Therefore, it would seem to be of heightened importance that she be thoroughly vetted in her confirmation process—a practice she herself once advocated in one of her few published works; unfortunately, preliminary suggestions indicate that her reception in the Senate will more likely involve velvet gloves than boxing gloves. (It should be noted also that during her own confirmation hearing for her current post of Solicitor General, she seemed much less enthusiastic about such an approach. Surprised?) Again, barring a major faux pas like stumbling over her strap-on while entering the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing room, she’s a virtual lock.

And we know practically nothing about her.

To paraphrase Pelosi’s asinine health care takeover argument (“We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it…”), it appears that Kagan will be confirmed with little more than perfunctory examination—and then we find out what we’re getting.

Yet another mysterious pig in a poke foisted upon us by the Obama regime.

________

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3 Responses to “Elena Kagan: Is she—or isn’t she?”

  1. Linda said

    Ha Ha. Can’t believe you said some of that stuff out loud. But you are right. We all wonder when a woman is on the plain side, even homely. The truth is, in most societies, women are judged first for looks, second for personality, and third for brains. Personally, since one in seven citizens is supposed to be gay, it is about time we have one on the big bench. But I don’t think she is. I think she has too much else to fill her time and just doesn’t care what she looks like. It is a shame we don’t get to know more about her beliefs, but maybe, given her many accomplishments, it just proves how she keeps her opinions to herself, and makes decisions based on the law.

    • Linda:

      Hmmm. Where to begin?

      Yep. I said all that stuff; is it really so surprising? (Hell, I toned it down considerably.)

      I can’t speak to your “one-in-seven” figure, since I’ve never researched it—but my gut feel is that figure is exaggerated (may never know, though—with who knows how many secreted away in the closet). I disagree that it’s “about time we had one on the big bench.” Why should we? Will we also have a pedophile or two appointed? How about someone who has a thing for livestock? Should bondage or S&M enthusiasts be represented? Cross-dressers? Judges are by definition expected to rule impartially (at least, in a perfect world they do—but I’m a bit more realistic in my expectations). I don’t see where one’s aberrant sexual proclivities should be considered a prerequisite. (And it’s a non-issue here, anyway—since we don’t know.)

      I agree that it’s not right that we judge people based on appearance—but I’ve also noted that it works in reverse. If we see an attractive woman in a powerful position, what do we think? That she got there based on her brain and ability—or that she slept her way to the top? If anything, being unattractive can be an advantage; we presume that she must be smart or good—because we judge (fairly or not) that she couldn’t have succeeded on the strength of her looks.

      We don’t “get to know more about her beliefs” because she doesn’t want us to. She carefully conceals that—which makes us suspicious.

      Nor do I see “her many accomplishments” beyond the honors she garnered while in school; it appears, rather, that everything good that’s come her way since completing law school has been acquired politically—and she’s never rendered a legal decision.

      Jim

  2. LCZ said

    Reply to reply…Well…Well.. since one in seven people in society are idiots. lets get one of those in there too….Obamazoids!!!! (Hemmoroids with attitude!!) Never enough freaks for this circus!!! Sometimes having a bad day can lead a person be therapeutically honest!!!

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