Tuesday, October 04, 2005

harriet miers

I don't get it. Why is Harriet Miers being considered for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court?

This is a woman with no experience on the bench, no clear positions or written opinons on major legal issues, or anything else I would consider an important qualification for the court. If she weren't Bush's personal lawyer and White House counsel, no one would have heard of her. No, strike that -- if she hadn't been nominated for the U.S. Supreme Court, no one would have heard of her. About all Bush has said so far about her is that she's a churchgoing Christian, and fiercely loyal to him.

And I guess that's what it takes to be worthy of nomination. I knew I should have spent more time sucking up to politicians when I was a newspaper editor. I might have gone somewhere.

Still, this does fit Bush's pattern of appointing close friends rather than qualified friends, doesn't it? I can't remember the country, but Bush appointed as ambassador during his first time a major political ally and supporter with no diplomatic experience or familiarity with the language. More recently, there was Michael "You're doing a great job, Brownie" Brown, who royally failed with Katrina disaster relief as head of FEMA. Bush's appointment for immigration top dog under Homeland Security is someone with absolutely no experience in immigration law or related matters. And, in a related personality trait, Bush has a history of marginalizing people who aren't team players, like Colin Powell and Christie Whitman. (Though at least Christie had that habit herself when she was New Jersey governor.)

I've no idea how widespread this problem was under Clinton, of course, although Jim McGreevey was infamous for it here in New Jersey, the most celebrated case being appointing his gay lover to head the state's homeland security operations, even though Cipel lacked U.S. citizenship and therefore even the most basic national security clearance.

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