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Your Breakfast Read, Served By The Confluence

Breakfast Read

War on Judge Sotomayor (Cont’d)
after taking some serious beating over his third-rate hatchet job on Judge Sotomayor, Jeffrey Rosen tries to polish the turd:
More Sotomayor

The headline–“The Case Against Sotomayor”–promised something much stronger than I intended to deliver. As soon as the piece was published, I regretted the headline, which I hadn’t seen in advance. The piece was not meant to be a definitive “case against” Judge Sotomayor’s candidacy.
I was satisfied that my sources’s concerns were widely shared when I read Sotomayor’s entry in the Almanac of the Federal Judiciary, which includes the rating of judges based on the collective opinions of the lawyers who work with them. Usually lawyers provide fairly positive comments. That’s what makes the discussion of Sotomayor’s temperament so striking. Here it is:

Sotomayor can be tough on lawyers, according to those interviewed. “She is a terror on the bench.” “She is very outspoken.” “She can be difficult.” “She is temperamental and excitable. She seems angry.” “She is overly aggressive–not very judicial. She does not have a very good temperament.” “She abuses lawyers.” “She really lacks judicial temperament. She behaves in an out of control manner. She makes inappropriate outbursts.” “She is nasty to lawyers. She doesn’t understand their role in the system–as adversaries who have to argue one side or the other. She will attack lawyers for making an argument she does not like.”

Wow! That is some nasty bitch.

Dissenting Justice takes that folly on:
Scalia v. Sotomayor: The Use of Gender-Coded Language to Evaluate a Judge’s “Temperament”

Compare the lawyer responses to Sotomayor with the AFJ comments on Justice Scalia — whom many lawyers consider a tough questioner as well. While lawyers negatively describe Sotomayor’s toughness, in Scalia, toughness receives praise, if not awe. Scalia’s hazing of lawyers is just part of the understood fun among the brotherhood of lawyers. Although reviewers describe Scalia as tough, this does not make him a dangerous “out-of-control” she-judge. Notice the sporting and friendly hazing metaphors in the AFJ description of Scalia:

Never utter the words “legislative history.” If you do, chances are Scalia will interject with a ridiculing harangue that makes it clear he views legislative history as poppycock. Legislative debates are often contrived and can’t trump the actual words of the statute, Scalia insists. But even if you play it safe, you can expect tough, persistent questioning from Scalia, often delivered with an almost gleeful lust for the sport of jabbing and jousting with advocates before him. And Scalia is an equal-opportunity jouster; even when his position seems obvious, Scalia will be just as hard on the lawyer he agrees with as the lawyer he’ll oppose. Ever the law professor, Scalia will sometimes ask questions with no clear relevance, just to see if you are on your toes. In a now-legendary exchange during arguments on a federal rule that barred the advertising of the alcohol content of beer, Scalia asked a lawyer for Coors to define the difference between beer and ale. The lawyer, the late Bruce Ennis, answered without missing a beat, to the amazement of justices and spectators alike, and Coors won the case. But Scalia can be nasty, as well. When a lawyer once paused too long before answering his question, Scalia said sharply, “You have four choices, counselor: “Yes,” “No,” “I don’t know,” or “I’m not telling.” But the most important advice on how to sway Scalia at oral argument or in brief-writing is to buy his new book.

In Scalia, toughness is positive; in Sotomayor, it is nonjudicial.

(All emphasis are mine)

Maybe President Obama should give Sen. Hatch another call:
Hatch: Sotomayor has ‘a problem’

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said Thursday that Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s past statement that the “court of appeals is where policy is made” would be a problem for her if she were nominated for the Supreme Court.

Dissenting Juistice who’s on a roll has a newsflash for Orrin Hatch:
Earth to Orrin Hatch: Even Conservative Judges Make Policy!

We are are agnostic about the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the SCOTUS. We are looking for a “liberal” SC Justice and we wish it would be something other that a white man. As for Judge Sotomayor, we will let NY DA Robert Morgenthau speak for us:
Sotomayor Is Highly Qualified

How “stressy” was the stress test?
Banks Won Concessions on Tests

The Federal Reserve significantly scaled back the size of the capital hole facing some of the nation’s biggest banks shortly before concluding its stress tests, following two weeks of intense bargaining.

US banks claim line softened on $74bn

Yves Smith has become very shrill:
Details on Banks’ Victory Over Treasury in Stress Tests Emerge

It was bad enough that the Treasury came up with an adverse case that is hardly a worse case scenario. As we pointed out, it is considerably more optimistic, both in duration and intensity of the downturn, than is typical for serious financial crises. And the earlier comparables did not take place in the context of a global downturn, which meant the afflicted countries got a substantial boost from depreciating their currencies and rising an export boom. Pursuing that strategy aggressively risks competitive devaluations and worse, overt protectionism. a negative sum game.

Investors bet that worst of recession is over and predict new bull market

On Wall Street: Beware of the sucker’s rally

The market is a cruel mistress indeed. Compounding the pain of big swoons, it kicks investors when they are down by luring them into sucker’s rallies – typically sharp but fleeting bounces in the middle of a bear market.

Green Shoots or Rose-Colored Glasses(Zero Hedge)

Af-Pak Headsaches
Afghan Leader Says Civilian Deaths Strain Ties With U.S.

Exodus of Pakistani civilians as battle against Taleban rages

Karzai’s Ex-Allies Vie for Afghan Presidency

Are we screwed with this economy?
Fine Line for Obama on How to Convey Hope on Economy

As the government announced this week that the nation’s largest banks had steered away from the precipice and that job losses were beginning to slow, Mr. Obama has carefully begun trying to mine any national leader’s most precious commodity in a crisis: optimism.

His past references to “glimmers of hope” were modestly upgraded at the White House on Friday, with his declaration — which he stumbled over, taking some of the assertiveness out of the line — that “the gears of our economic engine do appear to be slowly turning once again.”

For those who care about anything David Broder has to say about anything:
Molehill Out of a Budget Mountain

The entire nation has been wondering why there wasn’t any Breakfast Read yesterday: MABlue went on a one day strike to preemptively protest any cuts in our News Division. We took page from the Frenchies. Vive la France!
Workers of the World, Enjoy!

It looks like Nancy, Rockefeller and a bunch of Dems knew
Records suggest Pelosi, others were told of harsh interrogations

Uh ooh! Both sides will go nuts about this:
Obama Set to Revive Military Commissions

The Pope is in the Middle East
Personal Trip Carries Weight of Diplomacy

Pope makes visit to Jordan mosque

The latest on the photo-op
Aide who approved Air Force One flyover in New York resigns
(Nice pic though)

Please DIGG!! & — Share!

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70 Responses

  1. I’m still adding some items

  2. Yikes! I hope I didn’t wipe anything out when I posted the social links.

    Social Links? What social Links!?

    MABlue, send me an email when you’re done and I’ll put them back in.

    • KB:

      It looks like everything is there.

      The social Links are missing though.

      • Oh, good- I can add the links easily enough when you’re done.

        • I’m done.

          I don’t want the whole thing to become too long, whjich it is already.

          Is there a way a to have these social Links as signature? So you would not have to worry about it every time someone has a post up.

          • Sadly, no. WordPress.com is a REALLY stable blogging environment but, the way they pull it off is by stripping javascript (ANY programming script) from posts.

            So what I do is cut and paste each Post Title and URL into a little program on my own computer that then generates all the links to each site. Then I paste THAT into each post (plus adding the HardRule & some text) — the links have to be individually generated for each post. And THAT means it can’t be done until the post is actually published (not just a draft)

            I can send you the info about how to do it yourself if you want but, I don’t mind doing it (as long as I remember!)

          • If it so complicated, I’m glad you can do it.

          • It’s actually harder to describe than do. Which (I guess) is the problem.


  3. Madame Speaker is in a pickle. She can say she can’t remember anything and look senile, or keep denying what her own favorite candidates CIA director keeps digging up and look like a bad storyteller. She is also being raked over the coals by the hard right who are using the exact same language that was used by the angry Obama supporters to a attack Hillary and Sarah Palin. I wonder if Madame Speaker thinks using the obscene sexist language is OK now.

    • LOL! I prefer the term “liar” to “bad storyteller.” You’re much more polite than I am though.

      And if she complains about sexist language, I’m going to laugh my a$$ off!

      • I was listening the radio on the way to work and the Left is upset and her loyalty to Obama is sooo yesterday in their minds. She is now an obstacle to Obama’s great things to come…the change promised.

        • Of course, it has to be someone else’s fault. Can’t blame Obama after all. 🙂 He’s only president.

        • i love it when they turn on each other like rabid bats..

      • I used to get in trouble as a kid if I called my brothers liars. But I could say they were telling bad stories. She nor any of her posse can say a word about the appalling language being used because she, the most powerful woman in the country,allowed the filth to fly against female opposition with nary a word of disgust. What goes around and all that. I find it fascinating that the Republicans are going after her instead of any of the scummy male Democrats. Again females are always the target.

    • Wash Post: Nancy Pelosi Was Briefed On Use Of “Enhanced Interrogations”

      Was she or wasn’t she?

  4. Why am I not surprised that Sotomayor is now a target for teh boiz I suggest those that have dug a hole should stop digging. I have no view on who should be the choice, but sick of seeing the same kind of sexist responses we all witnessed in the primaries.

    On the other news, from here, I am wondering why no one is asking what Obama knew about the AF1 flight, how could he not know about it? So he has persuaded Caldera to take the fall… I don’t believe a word of it. He must have known and approved it.

    • He didn’t fire Jon “titty-groper” Favreau though.

      • no.. he didn’t… interesting that.

      • a few other interesting things, from Violet Socks
        (if I can remember how to do quotes on here)

        Obama’s administration has just announced that it plans to continue the Bush administration policy on polar bears, thus aligning itself with the Sarah Palin School of Polar Bear Habitat Management. As a matter of fact, Gov. Palin was quick to applaud today’s decision. In previous news, Obama has granted amnesty to the Bush administration torture crew; turned the financial mess over to the same pocket-lining Wall Street crooks and cronies who created it in the first place; expanded (yes, expanded) the Bush doctrine that the government can spy on anybody anytime and is totally immune from citizen prosecution; refused to restore habeas corpus, again moving even further to the right of the Bush administration; eliminated the funding for women’s reproductive health from the stimulus package; retained the Bush era restrictions on abortion (more on that coming in a detailed post, after I finish poring over the White House budget); vowed to increase the Bush administration’s faith-based support for patriarchal “fatherhood” programs (more on that also coming); torpedoed single-payer health care; and bombed Pakistan. And that’s just off the top of my head.

      • yeah, well what would he ever say, if he did that.

        • a president and his brain/speech writer … sort’ve like Reagan without his Noonan… you gotta have those words to read

      • but that was only sexism, not AF1ism. The boiz don’t care about sexism.

      • course not he can’t talk at all without him.

  5. Katiebird…have you tried using Live Writer? It will convert all messy code from stuff you want to copy from the internet things, then you just ship it over to WordPress. It works extremely well!! I use it mostly when I have to quote text which comes out in microscopic size and a different font if I post it straight from the source…I drop it into Live Writer, then ship it over to the editing page I’m on in WordPress…then delete the stuff I have just replaced….Windows Live Writer….a miracle!

    For some fun today…some fun pics of this crazy bird!!

    Saturday Sanity: The Antidote to the Madness (May 9, 2009) ROADRUNNER in the Yard!


    • PS..forgot to say that Live Writer will ship text directly to a WordPress Draft or publish directly…

  6. Will Zuma bring tribalism to South Africa?
    (Comment removed. See Woman @11:33 am)

    • It is deeply troubling for sure.

      • I have a friend in who does not meet this new presidents ideals of his citizens and I have great fears for him and for his female relatives. I will write him today and ask how things are going as I had not heard from him a several weeks.

        When we take our Liberties for granted we lose them, when we stop the struggle for Civil Rights of like those of LGBT’s and Women’s Rights, we can easily find ourselves living in oppression.

        I hope we never lose our will to speak up and be heard and that we aren’t silenced through oppression or fear.

        • I have a female online friend in a similar situation and she is very concerned about the new situation.

          And then on top of the human rights issues there are also echoes of Mugabe with his land redistribution promises.

          Never take liberty for granted, you just never know how quickly it can be taken away, it is a very precious thing.

          • I had planned to go to South Africa at some point, but I am hesitant now, and I got all teary thinking of my friend and his family. I wonder how long it will take him to undue every thing Mandela’s government put in place. Truly heart breaking.

            My take on things now is that we all need to be ‘Judged by the color of our character’, as power corrupts and only sound character is acts as a true protector of the people.

  7. Spammy ate my post. 😦

  8. Jacob Zuma – South Africa (Bring my machine gun)

    Will Zuma bring tribalism to South Africa?
    By Farouk Chothia
    BBC News

    South Africa’s first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela, promoted a “Rainbow Nation”; his successor Thabo Mbeki an “African Renaissance”; so what will be the overarching vision of a Jacob Zuma presidency?

    He has not yet outlined one, but the initial signs are that Mr Zuma will promote a new conservatism in South Africa, digging deep into the nation’s cultural and religious roots and threatening Western-styled liberal values enshrined in the constitution.

    Mr Zuma’s supporters showed these traits throughout his long and bitterly fought presidential campaign, offering prayers to ancestors, denouncing same-sex marriage as a “disgrace to God”, promising a referendum on the death penalty, condemning political rivals as “witches” and “snakes”, and defending polygamy as “African”.

    For Mr Zuma’s critics, he has mixed a deadly cocktail of religion, politics and ethnicity to quench his thirst for power.


    Oppression of women in IN (polygamy), Same Sex Marriage is on its way OUT. Oh, it would appear that progress is working backwards in South Africa these days and the Policies of the Rainbow government of Mandela quickly forgotten. Many people are killed in the name of religion throughout the world and it amazes me that he took an Oath to defend the ‘Republic and its Constitution’ yet seeks to undermine its very fabric. Will South Africa EVER have a woman leader NOW that the Patriarchy has taken hold?

  9. “Wow! That is some nasty bitch.”

    Huh? I found that a bit jarring

    • Another looong sigh accompanied by an over the top roll of the eyes

    • If it were a MAN, he would be ‘Very assertive and a no non-sense Judge’. If they call her all those names then she is effective, in my mind, because only the self charting ones get all the road blocks and name calling.

    • Joanelle, I agree. It reminds me too much of the Wankette style. I didn’t click that link the other day, but I could see the first sentence referring to Sotomayer as a Mexican gal. Their excuse of using that language to mock her critics is not excusable or funny to me.

      I don’t care for terms such as “nasty bitch” or “Hillary would have shot gays in the face” but if it’s going to be there – there should be a snark tag. I’m hoping we attract new readers and language such as that could do one of two things – be off-putting to those we want to attract or (worse) attract people we don’t want.

  10. Don’t forget to sign up for Confluence Twitter updates

    • I’m so trying to get used to that. I don’t even pick up my phone most of the time or get to my emails quickly. It seems like one more way to have folks bug you!

    • I really don’t need another thing to check

    • FYI, there is a WomanVoter already on twitter and so I am WomanVote there and the 6th to join the group. Does it send little emails to our phones when a new post is up?

  11. War on Judge Sotomayor
    My biggest concern with Judge Sotomayor is that she would be the sixth Justice whose religion considers abortion a “mortal sin”.

  12. Katiebird, this is for you:

    Do you know about Plurk (people+lurk)?
    It seems to be like Twitter, but with the addition that you can also share multimedia content like videos.
    Don’t Twit myself, so I don’t know if it is an advantage or not!


  13. SHV…if it helps, I happen to be a woman and a “cradle Catholic” who is pro-choice. I’m not an anamoly either.
    My second wife and my current GF are also cradle Catholics and pro-choice. They however aren’t involved in situations where they have to make decisions that enable abortion.

    The Roman Catholic Church has a two thousand year opposition to abortion (unlike the evangelicals) which I understand and respect. As a non-religious person, I don’t understand how a person can be a “good catholic” and pro-choice. A mortal sin is or should be a serious issue for a believer. It seems to be a psychologically unstable situation. I guess Anthony Kennedy’s abortion positions give some indication of that situation. I would be even more worried if the nominee was a pro-choice evangelical. I would suspect that as one gets older there might be a tendency to think more about one’s cradle religion.

  14. That should be second ex-wife. :>)

  15. NYC Starts Charging Rent At Homeless Shelters

    City officials this month began charging rent to some families staying in homeless shelters.

    The policy applies only to shelter residents who have income from jobs.

    They could be expected to pay up to half their earnings.

    Some shelter residents say the new rule will ruin their chances of saving enough money to get an apartment.


    What happened to my America and the American Dream? The quest for Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness is proving to be more illusory every day.

    • Whoa! Why do they think they live in homeless Shelters? They can not afford to rent apartments and all they are doing is taking a way their chances of ever doing so. Those people need to save up some money. What they are is so wrong to the people that need all the help they can get.

      • Sometimes government is really stupid.

        Back in the late 80’s when “homeless” first became a word I was living in San Jose and the City Council was discussing a measure to help the homeless buy houses.


        If the homeless could afford to make mortgage payments they could afford to pay rent. Why not help them find jobs instead?

      • What they are doing is so wrong

    • In MA they are trying to pass a bill that would keep people from using homeless shelters unless they are working at least 30 hours a week. Can you believe that?

  16. She is who she is. Her past actions would be the best indicator of her future performance.

    • I never assume that just because a person is a member of a certain religion that they ascribe to all that church’s teachings.

      My mother is a fundie but she drinks wine. I even know a few baptists that go out dancing.

      Fundies allegedly think everything in the Bible is the true word of God. But there are lots of parts of the book (especially in the Old Testament) that they don’t talk about.

  17. I just found this in response to something I posted in a previous thread that is now closed. I guess I know now why there are a lot of lurkers here and not as many make comments.

    bostonboomer, on May 9th, 2009 at 8:12 am Said:

    Don’t you get it, myiq2xu? We’re stupid and clueless idiots who need to be condescended to.

    I wasn’t being condescending, just trying to give some information to what seemed to be a legitimate question and I get slammed with that. Wow. Sorry if my post didn’t come across the right way because my writing skills aren’t up to standards. I guess I’ll go back to lurking.

    The “regulars” here need to remember that if a troll is giving you problems on a thread, don’t jump all over everyone else who makes a comment unless you really just like talking to each other and don’t want anyone else to comment. I’ve seen this before when a troll is being irritating and a different non-regular makes a comment and gets slammed. I usually don’t see them comment again.

    • That wasn’t addressed to you Fitz. Sorry about that.

    • Everything in life involves the law – from cradle to grave and beyond.

      We understand why people get want to get married and the complex legal issues involved.

      DK was obviously being snarky when she made her comment. Those of us who have been divorced often are snarky about marriage. It ain’t the promised land.

      If you’re gonna jump in the middle of a pie fight don’t complain about the whipped cream in your hair afterward. Try getting acquainted with us by commenting instead of lurking and we’ll have more than one comment to make judgments on.

      BTW – I closed comments on that thread because I wasn’t going to be here to moderate it.

      • Let me add, some of the issues you mentioned could be resolved by changing the law without legalizing gay marriage. And the parental rights issue is going to take more than just legalizing gay marriage to resolve.

        If you want more than “civil unions” then the moral argument (equality) is stronger than the legal one.

  18. Change of subject: New thread up

  19. i always duck.when i see the pie coming.lol.

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