Whether true or false, the accusations against Brett Kavanaugh will have staying power because of who his defenders are.
Kavanaugh by most accounts appears to be a good judge and a decent human being but the eleventh hour revelation of sexual assault accusations is now stalling his confirmation process. The timing and the manner in which the accusations were made public certainly suggest it is yet another political ploy by dishonest, ends-justify-the-means, party-first charlatans.
Is it possible that he committed an atrocious act as a drunken teenager? Of course it is. But is it likely?
My “no” answer is far less emphatic than it might once have been. I no longer take people on either side of the aisle at their word.
If the last few years have reinforced anything it is that public figures will inevitably disappoint you and that people are very often quite different in private than they are in public. For political and media players the probability of such a split personality approaches one. (Back during the Ten Commandments monument kerfuffle, no one expected that Roy Moore was “dating” underage girls as a man in his thirties. You just never know when your only exposure to a person is filtered through the media.)
None of that means I believe Kavanaugh guilty of anything. It just means I’m going to wait and see how it plays out and what gets revealed before I start grabbing my pitchfork and torches.
The loudest voices proclaiming the absurdity of these accusations against Judge Kavanaugh are the same voices who, among other things, told us that President Trump absolutely wasn’t paying off the bimbos with whom he was cheating on his latest disposable wife. Their defenses of Trump’s character have no more credibility than the Democrats’ transparent chicanery.
They’re just playing the demented game of liar’s poker which we call politics, where the ultimate goal is to win some “good” for your team. How you win it, whether you deserve to win it, or whether it is in fact “good” is irrelevant. The rules—to the extent there are any—are judged and adhered to only to the extent they benefit one’s team. The rules change from round to round so moral clarity and ethical consistency are conveniently eliminated from consideration.
This is not a process from which the reputation of even a man of impeccable character emerges unscathed. No one swims in the swamp without getting slimed.
Obviously that doesn’t mean Kavanaugh is guilty of anything. It just means that the assertions of politicos and pundits who have demonstrated a willingness to say anything to win the soundbite war are what can most charitably be called unreliable…and most accurately called garbage. That is at least until there is hard evidence to look at. On most controversial issues there is nowhere near enough of that to fill a 24 hour news cycle so the remainder of the time is spent televising “the game” for your entertainment.
In any situation where your reputation is on the line, the last people you want as character witnesses are people who literally get paid to tell you what they think you want to hear. Kavanaugh probably didn’t assault anyone. That many of his defenders would certainly tell you he didn’t even if they knew he did is enough for the accusation to leave a permanent mark.