Monday, September 05, 2005

5:44 Isn't Nine Minutes After Anything
Wow, "Chief Justice John Roberts." Three years ago the guy wasn't even a judge. Of course, five years ago the head of FEMA was a superintendent of horse judging. So just because there's lots of reasons to believe you might be underqualified for a gig doesn't mean you should stop dreaming. The way Bush is going, he'll be picking random dudes off the streets for cabinet posts in a year or so.

It's possible that the Roberts thing might be a brilliant political move. Every current sitting justice has problems in terms of becoming chief--too old (Stevens), too liberal (Breyer, Ginsburg, Souter), not sufficiently wingnutty (Kennedy), too controversial to be confirmed (Scalia, Thomas), so since Roberts is already widely assumed to be sailing through the confirmation process, why not take advantage of that fact and give him the big chair? But it's possible that it might also be stone stupid politics. The Chief Justice's passing gave Bush the subject-changing moment he desperately needed after the Katrina debacle, but by rolling it into the Roberts story, which is old news by this point, he gives it away.

Whatever it is, it permits us to play "guess the new associate justice" for a few days. It's safe to assume it will probably be one of the people Bush interviewed for the slot Roberts got. But Salon raised an ugly possibility yesterday in a War Room post: Janice Rogers Brown. Try this one for political size: Brown, who's pretty much batshit crazy, is also African American. Don't put it past the Bush gang to spin her as some kind of gift to the poor African Americans of New Orleans. Which would raise the bar for satire yet again.

I don't know what's going to happen, though, and I'm trying not to think too much about it because it's a holiday. I'm trying to stay out of politics entirely, so I've been killing time with a website found by accident called We Made Out in a Tree and This Old Guy Sat and Watched Us, which is a place for people to post random bits of overheard conversations, weird advertising signs, strange translations from foreign languages to English, and other oddments. It's lovely, really.

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