Thursday, June 28, 2018

Thanks for all the hits!

It's a very pleasant surprise waking up to see I had 1539 hits yesterday.  I'm lucky if I get that many hits in one month.  Not only that but there have been an additional 457 hits so far today.  Not sure what I owe the pleasure of all this visitation to, but it appears to come largely from the United States, and to a small degree Vietnam.  I'd like to think a few persons have taken interest in the blog, but the hits were mostly to the main page, with no significant increase in individual posts.  Alas, that means no comments.   So, I have no idea why you took a look, except maybe by accident.

If so, I hope you at least scanned or maybe even read one of the posts.  I've been keeping this blog going for the better part of nine years with the hope I might rekindle some fire after most of the old NYTimes followers left.  The blog was a safety net for those who had kept the American History forum alive in the old NYTimes reading forums.  The individual sites can no longer be reached without Mick Sussman's secret key, assuming he is still there.  Over time, I turned it into my personal blog, commenting largely on the state of American politics the last two years.

It's hard to keep track of all the twists and turns in the Age of Trump.  No sooner did I post on the recent Supreme Court decisions than Anthony Kennedy retires.  He has been regarded as one of the moderate voices, especially when it comes to abortion and civil marriage rights.  His departure allows Republicans to stack the deck even more in their favor with a judge less sympathetic to these rights.

Everyone from Chris Matthews to Rachel Maddow has been urging the Democrats to block any Trump appointee, but the guy in control here is Mitch the Turtle, who will no doubt seek a replacement in the shortest order so that we have a new conservative justice before the end of the year.   It was the Turtleman who offered Trump a choice of four picks in January, 2017, and His Trumpness was most impressed with Neil Gorsuch, being the rugged, good-looking guy he is.  Kind of like the Marlboro Man.  I'm sure Mitch will have a similar buffet of judges offered in the coming weeks, who will be acceptable to potential Republican naysayers like Jeff Flake and Susan Collins.  Don't want to leave confirmation in the hands of a potentially Democratic Senate next January.

If Trump had his way, we would probably see him nominate Jeanine Pirro, as Donnie Jr. has intimated.  However, at a well-manicured 67, she doesn't fit the age profile.  His Trumpness is looking for someone in his or her late 30s or early 40s who will sit on the bench for the next 45 years, and be as conservative as hell.   Unless Jeanine has discovered the Fountain of Youth, she is a no go.

Of course, this defeats the whole purpose of a Supreme Court, which is supposed to be a non-biased bench whose sole task is to properly interpret the Constitution.  Unfortunately, that isn't the way it has turned out with justices offering political moreso than legal opinions on the recent rulings.  In that sense, Jeanine Pirro, or anyone of the Fox judicial pundits, would be right at home on the bench.

The Supreme Court has a long history of going through so-called liberal and conservative cycles.  It was the last "liberal" cycle that gave us Roe v. Wade, which Republicans have been trying for the last 45 years to reverse.  They may do so if they get a favorable conservative judge on the bench, which is what has Chris Hayes moaning that a battle over abortion is on the horizon.   This was one of the only good things about Kennedy, as for the most part he took the conservative side on decisions.

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