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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 26, 2005 / 17 Iyar, 5765

The Fizzle in Filibuster Fission

By James Lileks


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | For sci-fi junkies, there's "Star Wars." For political fiends, there's the nuclear option over the filibustering of judicial nominees. Imagine how geeks would react to a 26-hour "Star Wars" movie that skipped the space battles and ended with Darth Vader and Obi-Wan shaking hands, and you have the mood of the Republican base today.

The GOP agreed to let some judges who would have been confirmed be confirmed, and agreed to dump some judges who had enough votes to get the job. In exchange for not enforcing the Constitution, they extracted a promise from the Dems not to filibuster unless "extraordinary circumstances" arise.

Very nice. "Kumbaya," etc. Unfortunately, "extraordinary circumstances" will probably be applied to any nominee to the right of Rob Reiner. Anyone conservative is extraordinary and circumstantial. Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean, for example, recently told Tim Russert what it means to be a Democrat:

"Our moral values, in contradiction to the Republicans', is we don't think kids ought to go to bed hungry at night."

Bingo! Head shot! We all recall the rafter-shaking huzzahs when President Bush proposed the National Evening Snack Confiscation Act, which would use stealthy ninjas to steal milk and cookies from the nation's youth. Republicans hate abortion because it means fewer children gripping their tummies in pain at bedtime. Let such miscreants take over the courts, and they'll rule that the Interstate Commerce Clause doesn't cover the right of citizens to marry stem cells over the Internet.

In short, if the Republicans nominate someone who doesn't think the First Amendment says CONGRESS SHALL MAKE NO LAWS ABRIDGING RIGHT TO PRIVACY!!!! THIS MEANS U!!!, it'll trigger the filibuster again.

Or maybe not; maybe Dems will filibuster because a judge is a leeeetle bit too religious. Or an ethnic type who wandered off the compound. Or some dangerous free-thinker who fails to see the Constitution as an origami project to be folded into new and interesting shapes.

If Bush nominates someone who once sent a birthday card to Robert Bork, he'll be painted as a reactionary who wants everyone to dress like Cotton Mather and use "thee" as a form of address. Then it's filibusterin' time again.

Why not? What would be the penalties? Who'd complain? The Republicans would carp, but they'd look like little baby whiners. The Democrats would go right back to the script, and blame Bush for appointing judges who want to bring back slavery and use children as coal-mine air quality testers.

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The entire affair would have been over long ago if Senate Republicans had been less interested in cloakroom comity and more interested in ending this novel application of the venerable filibuster. But the Senate, as we are often told, is where the passions are sent to cool, congeal, dry out and crust over with a thick, furry coat of mold. Senators take pride in their role. And if you had that many servants, drivers, factotums and aides de camp scurrying after your Very Important Self, you'd be swollen with pride as well.

Hence, in the end, the GOP senators decided to represent some mythical idea of senatorial grandeur and collegiality — as if the exercise of partisan advantage to do the right thing violated the founders' desire for sweetness and light and happy, chirpy bird song.

In any case, it's done; the nuclear option, which was threatened for a greater period of time than it took to actually invent the nuclear bomb, is off the table.

Filibuster for the Supreme Court? Poppycock. Why, listen to Sen. Harry Reid after the deal was struck: "We have sent President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and the radical right of the Republican Party an undeniable message. ... The abuse of power will not be tolerated."

Gracious in victory, no? Sounds like someone who wants to build a bridge, all right — so he can throw the next nominee over the railing. And the GOP will agree to jump ... in the spirit of compromise, of course.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor James Lileks is a columnist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Comment by clicking here.

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© 2005, James Lileks

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