No longer on the fence on the Miers nomination


It was reading this article, referenced at Michelle Malkin’s blog, that persuaded me against the nomination. Key part from the article:

Meanwhile, several constitutional law scholars said they were surprised and puzzled by Miers’s response to the committee’s request for information on cases she has handled dealing with constitutional issues. In describing one matter on the Dallas City Council, Miers referred to “the proportional representation requirement of the Equal Protection Clause” as it relates to the Voting Rights Act.

“There is no proportional representation requirement in the Equal Protection Clause,” said Cass R. Sunstein, a constitutional law professor at the University of Chicago. He and several other scholars said it appeared that Miers was confusing proportional representation — which typically deals with ethnic groups having members on elected bodies — with the one-man, one-vote Supreme Court ruling that requires, for example, legislative districts to have equal populations.

That’s not comforting to read or hear. I can’t support someone who gets Constitutional law confused. Michelle has more links in her post from other bloggers who have dissected Miers’ answers to the 57-page questionnaire she submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee – the arguments from those bloggers are very convincing.

John Hawkins has a roundup of less than complimentary commentary from well-respected conservatives on the Miers nomination that had me second-guessing my neutrality on this issue as well.

I don’t have anything to add to the argument against Miers. I will, however, say I have immense respect for those on the pro-Miers side who have done a great job of defending her nomination (like Hugh Hewitt and Beldar) who have had an uphill batttle to fight against the firestorm of criticism directed towards the President for what is widely considered a poor choice of a nominee for the USSC. Those who have argued passionately against this nomination without resorting to personal attacks, I praise as well. Those on either side who have made the arguments personal should step back and reassess their apparent inability to disagree civilly.

For the record, I won’t be joining the call for a withdrawal of the nomination. If the process works the way it should – with the lack of strong support being shown for this nominee – I think it’s a strong possibility she will not be confirmed.

Now excuse me while I attempt to rescue Patterico off that ledge.

Update: Make sure to check the comments section of the Patterico post I mentioned above for an interesting debate regarding the comments in question from Miers that I posted here (and have been posted at many other blogs, I’m sure).

Friday Update: Baseball Crank (a practicing lawyer) has a well-written post on why he, too, is no longer on the fence.

Related Toldjah So posts:

Blogging from the Capitol


Earlier this week, the House Republican Conference invited bloggers to the Capitol for a chance to meet with House Republicans to discuss economic issues. Matt Margolis at Blogs For Bush was among the bloggers invited to attend and he has a great recap in several posts (scroll down and start at the bottom to read in order of when they were posted) today – including audio links – of what was discussed.

Ian from the Political Teen was there also and liveblogged it.

Site accessibility issues


Apologies to anyone who has had problems with accessing this blog today – it’s been up and down (mostly down) for the last two hours. It’s a hosting issue, apparently, as some other blogs who also utilize the same host I do are having the same problems.

Hopefully the problem will be corrected soon. I’m able to access it ok at the moment but that could very well change.

Update 3:12 PM ET: – looks like things are running smoothly again.

Media bias apparent in ‘burning bodies’ story


First, the headline:

U.S. Soldiers Burned Bodies of Taliban Fighters, Taunted Villagers

The story:

SYDNEY, Australia (AP) – The U.S. military said Wednesday it was investigating a report carried on an Australian television network that claimed American soldiers in Afghanistan burned the bodies of two Taliban fighters and then used the action to taunt other Islamic militants.

The SBS television network said it broadcast video footage on its respected Dateline current affairs program showing U.S. soldiers burning the bodies of the suspected Taliban fighters in the hills outside the southern village of Gonbaz, near the former Taliban stronghold of Kandahar.

Back to the headline, one word we need to examine is “Villagers”. If you read on in the story, you’ll find that the troops weren’t ‘taunting’ mere “villagers” – their goal was to draw out Islamic militants (and note that they opted to use the words “militant” and “fighters” rather than “terrorist” – surprise, surprise). Later in the story, we read:

Shortly after the bodies were burned, another group of soldiers then sent taunting messages about the act to the nearby village, believed to be harboring Taliban soldiers, according to a transcript of the program. SBS said the troops that sent the messages were part of the U.S. Army’s psychological operations unit.

“Taliban, you are all cowardly dogs. You allowed your fighters to be laid down facing west and burned. You are too scared to come down and retrieve their bodies,” said one message read by a soldier, according to the transcript.

The only “villagers” here being “taunted” are any who are suspected of either being a Taliban terrorist or harboring them!

The clear implication from the headline is this: US soldiers brutally burned bodies of Taliban “soldiers” (note again that they didn’t use the word “terrorists” :shock:) and then taunted nearby innocent “villagers.” It’s only when you read into the story that you realize that the villagers aren’t so innocent. What we’re supposed to think: ‘This is just like Abu Ghraib!’, an Australian news outlet, goes ahead and tells us that in the last line of this article:

The incident is reminiscent of the psychological techniques used in Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison.

Isn’t it just wonderful how the media enjoys drawing the conclusions forus rather than trusting us to come to them ourselves?

This is yet another classic example of how the media manipulates news to support their anti-war viewpoints. Our fighting forces are in Afghanistan to smoke out (no pun intended) terrorist thugs who want to kill us and turn our country into an Islamic state, yet we get this nonsense about alleged brutality/desecration done by our troops to them? This is such a horribly reported story that it’s pathetic.

Jason Coleman has an extensive post that gives you the *complete* story along with some, shall we say, ‘interesting’ tidbits about Stephen DuPont and John Martinkus, the reporters (who were embedded with American troops) who filmed and commented about this story. You won’t be surpised once you’re done reading it as to why this story ended up getting reported the way it did.

Beth at MY VRWC has more.

Hat tip: Charmaine Yoest.

(Cross-posted at Blogs For Bush)