a citizen’s journal by Thomas Nephew

I, too, am troubled by the Miers nomination

Posted by Thomas Nephew on October 3rd, 2005


She rose to her present position by her absolute devotion to George Bush. I mentioned last week that she told me that the president was the most brilliant man she had ever met. To flatter on such a scale a person must either be an unscrupulous dissembler, which Miers most certainly is not, or a natural follower. And natural followers do not belong on the Supreme Court of the United States.

The most brilliant man she ever met? That’s taking the famed White House contempt for reality a little too far, I think, and I hope even the President would agree.

But I’m also troubled by David Frum deleting the above statement from his blog. Does he now support flattery on a Miersian scale? Does he now agree Bush is the most brilliant man Miers has ever met? Or is he backing away from “certainly not an unscrupulous dissembler?” Or do natural followers belong on the Supreme Court after all? It’s all very difficult to follow.

Via Kevin Drum.

EDIT, 10/3: link added to Frum “last week” quote.

3 Responses to “I, too, am troubled by the Miers nomination”

  1. Gary Farber Says:

    Interesting as it is to speculate, and to of course assume the worst, I’m inclined to cut people slack about afterthoughts, or what they delete; there are innumerable possible reasons, after all, and I’ve found that tending to assume or imply the worst tends, in general, not to be a practice that serves me well.

  2. Paul Says:

    I’m with Gary. I don’t think it does a mind good to assume the worst right off the bat before considering more plain reasons.

  3. Thomas Nephew Says:

    There’s nothing to assume, Gary.
    Based on the facts as I know them, Frum wrote what he wrote, then he took it back — and took it back without explanation, trying to make it look like he never said it.
    We thus have a pretty clear view into Frum’s unsettled mind: upset enough with the Miers nomination to trot out a very unimpressive story about her, cowardly enough to quickly retract that on reconsideration. Perhaps in the end this is merely based on my 46+ years of life on this planet, but I think we got his real, unvarnished, and more reliable view of her the first time.
    I don’t pretend to know *why* he wrote or retracted his statement. Both actions were presumably what he thought best at the time. But I don’t think I’m going out on an “assumed” limb to imply that regardless of his motives, together those actions were silly and dishonest.
    But by all means spell out what I’m assuming, if either of you would be willing. What are the “more plain reasons”? I don’t get it.
    [12:40am: added ‘either of’, corrected age: not 47 yet!]

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