Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Morning copy 10.05.2005

Harriet Miers

Monday morning "Harriet Miers" resulted in about 350 blogs on a Google Blog search. At 1500 Eastern on Monday, 3,352 blog entries resulted from that search. Tuesday morning the number was 9,974 blog entries. This morning there are 14,568 results.

George Will in the Washington Post (Yikes.):

It is not important that she be confirmed because there is no evidence that she is among the leading lights of American jurisprudence, or that she possesses talents commensurate with the Supreme Court's tasks. The president's "argument" for her amounts to: Trust me. There is no reason to, for several reasons.

He has neither the inclination nor the ability to make sophisticated judgments about competing approaches to construing the Constitution. Few presidents acquire such abilities in the course of their pre-presidential careers, and this president particularly is not disposed to such reflections.

Furthermore, there is no reason to believe that Miers's nomination resulted from the president's careful consultation with people capable of such judgments. If 100 such people had been asked to list 100 individuals who have given evidence of the reflectiveness and excellence requisite in a justice, Miers's name probably would not have appeared in any of the 10,000 places on those lists.

What this nomination is signaling in the Los Angeles Times:

In the process, he's bypassed a long list of judges with consistent conservative records on state and federal courts.

"I don't know that there is a deliberate message — I think he is just trying to avoid trouble — but the message comes through: Do not be controversial, do not express strong opinions that arouse opposition," said Robert H. Bork, the conservative legal scholar and former federal judge. Bork's extensive writings keyed an explosive confirmation battle that culminated in his rejection by the Senate when President Reagan nominated him to the Supreme Court in 1987.

President Bush on the defensive, New York Times:

"I can understand people not, you know, knowing Harriet," the president said in a 55-minute news conference in the Rose Garden at the White House, designed in large part to bolster Ms. Miers's position as many conservatives remained agitated about the choice the day after she was selected. "She hasn't been, you know, one of those publicity hounds. She's been somebody who just quietly does her job."

The importance of this press conference, and how rare such a conference is, in the Washington Post:

"I picked the best person I could find," Bush said at his first full-fledged White House news conference since May. "People know we're close. But you got to understand, because of our closeness, I know the character of the person. It's one thing to say a person can read the law -- and that's important -- and understand the law. But what also matters . . . is the intangibles. To me, a person's strength of character counts a lot."

So you say you want a constitution con't...

The change to the constitution that further alienates the Sunnis of Iraq has drawn criticism from a United Nations spokesperson, New York Times:

But other lawmakers said the talks appeared to be bogged down, with the Iraqis apparently unwilling to undo the change.

Sunni Arab leaders had already said they might boycott the referendum.

Other members of the National Assembly said the rule change could seriously damage the credibility of the vote, a crucial moment in Iraq's transition to full independence. Some warned that it could actually increase the chances of a vote against the constitution.

An interesting story about Sunni-Shiite tension throughout the Gulf in Reuters:

DUBAI (Reuters) - For Sunni Muslim-ruled Gulf states, seeing Iraq fall under Shi'ite influence after the 2003 U.S.-led war that ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was shocking enough.

Now they fear that rising tensions between Iraq's disgruntled Sunni minority and triumphant Shi'ite majority will erupt into all-out civil war that could surge across their borders and rock the fragile balance of power in the region.

Our Korean force

Troubling analysis in the Washington Post about our materiel:

But even after government inspectors found, starting in October 2004, that at least half and as much as 80 percent of the heavy weapons and other fighting gear were not "fully mission capable," inaccurate military reports led the Pentagon and Congress to believe that readiness was high.

The commander of U.S. forces in Korea, Gen. Leon LaPorte, testified before the Senate in March that the equipment, known as "prepositioned stocks," was "in very good shape." Tensions were high at the time with North Korea, which declared in February that it had produced nuclear weapons to defend itself from the United States.

Posse Comitatus

Bush says he has another reason to overturn an act more than a century old, CNN:

President Bush says the possibility of an avian flu pandemic is among the reasons he wants Congress to give him the power to use the nation's military in law enforcement roles in the United States.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:52 PM  

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