Monday :: Oct 3, 2005

The Lessons of Harriet Miers

by eriposte

George Bush's nomination of a stealth candidate to the Supreme Court is not a surprise to me. I never believed he would nominate someone who has overtly advocated for the holy grail of wingnuttia - banning abortion. In some form or the other, a fair majority in this country is pro-choice (not the same as "pro-abortion") - and nominating an overtly anti-abortion and anti-choice candidate would risk the future of the ongoing Republican power grab far too much, for a return that is at best marginal (if any). After all, for the Bushies, abortion, illegal immigration, and gay rights are the rhetorical weapons of their culture war, used purely to achieve electoral victories using the ignorance and gullibility of their Far Right base. Their real Base (remember Fahrenheit 9/11?) is different.

Thus, to Bush+Rove, a much better strategy would have been to find a candidate who is ideally a highly faithful crony who has little in the way of judicial experience or history, who:

  • Will seek to ensure that 4+ years of unmitigated and escalating corruption, abuse of power, depraved negligence, unprecedented criminal incompetence and other free-ranging criminality by George Bush can be safely tucked away under the guise of Executive power and privilege,
  • Will seek to fight for (and preserve) the absolute power and greed of crony corporatist millionaire welfare recipients (the real Base of the Republican party) rather than for the rights and well-being of ordinary Americans (whether it be the downtrodden or the real capitalists)
  • Will drive for an erosion of civil liberties for individuals in service to a Republican head of state and their corporate Base,
  • And....who might vote to overturn Roe v. Wade someday as a bonus (or might not)

Does Miers fit this profile? I don't know yet.

Clearly, she is some of the above (a crony for sure, a crony corporatist quite likely), but there is a lot that is not known about her. What is known is that her nomination is a significant acknowledgement of weakness. After all, Rove has the Republican Senate in his pocket, considering how much they have willingly participated in the culture of corruption and criminality all these years. He has the majority in the Senate - a majority that can arguably get the most offensive and inhuman candidate on record to be rammed through by destroying the filibuster (if needed). Yet, Bush+Rove chose to take the stealth road.

The stealth approach is also revealing of another important fact. It makes it clear that *in the public limelight*, the Far Right conservatism espoused by Bush's extremist wingnuttia base is something that Dear Leader doesn't have the courage to feel "proud of".

I can see in part why the wingnut contingent of the blogosphere is a wee bit disappointed at Bush today - after all, he effectively admitted that the only way he is going to do wingnuts favors on the most important battle in their (recent) lifetimes is if the wingnuttery is almost entirely hidden (using fake moderation if needed). Thus, regardless of whether SCOTUS actually turns into Far Right wingnuttia one day (with Roberts and Miers), Bush's choice of Miers (and to a small extent his choice of Roberts and the White House's strong efforts to hide his past) is an indirect acknowledgment that his (Far Right) base often holds views outside those of the American mainstream, views that are not something to be proud of in public (talk about pots and kettles).

That's small consolation for us if SCOTUS ends up becoming a Far Right experimental ground - but it is nevertheless an observation that we must reinforce in the minds of Bush's Far Right supporters.

eriposte :: 7:25 PM :: Comments (7) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!