The brouhaha over a (very tenuously) alleged "assault" by Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh, reported by the New York Times over the weekend, is utterly ridiculous and nonsensical. It also exposes that newspaper (yet again) as a hollow shell of its former self, a propaganda organ rather than a serious journalistic endeavor. Consider:
- The alleged "victim" of the "assault" has no recollection of it ever occurring, and refuses to discuss it. As another reporter noted, "Omitting this fact from the New York Times story is one of the worst cases of journalistic malpractice in recent memory." The newspaper later updated its story to reflect this, but by then the damage was done.
- The person the NYT claims made the allegations, Max Stier, was a Clinton lawyer during the Whitewater investigations in the 1990's, pitting him against Kavanaugh, who was at the time on the staff of independent counsel Ken Starr. This provides potential grounds for animosity and/or lack of objectivity on Mr. Stier's part (which were not mentioned in the accusatory article).
- The newspaper tweeted, then deleted, a weird message that appeared to come as close as possible to slandering Justice Kavanaugh without actually crossing the legal line defining that crime - again, without any first-hand evidence that the incident in question ever occurred.
- As if prearranged and scripted in advance (which would not surprise me), almost every left-wing, progressive Democratic Party candidate for the Presidential elections in 2020 immediately began to parrot calls for Justice Kavanaugh's impeachment, despite no evidence whatsoever being advanced to support the allegations against him.
The entire episode is so blatantly scripted, so clearly the product of innuendo and suggestion rather than established fact, that it's sickening. It's a new low even for the New York Times, which appears to have progressed (you should pardon the expression) from "all the news that's fit to print" to "all the partisan propaganda we think we can get away with".
I have a personal theory about the timing and nature of this attack on Justice Kavanaugh, which is not based on any private information or evidence, but is, I think, at least within the realms of possibility. Justice Ginsberg, one of the leading left-wing judges on the Supreme Court, is elderly, and has suffered serious health issues in recent years (most recently pancreatic cancer, a disease with a five-year survival rate of less than one in ten patients). What if it was known or suspected, in certain political circles, that her illness was, or is, rather more serious than has been publicly reported? What if, privately, she isn't expected to live for much longer?
Would that be sufficient motivation for left-wing and progressive opinion-shapers to coordinate their attacks on Justice Kavanaugh, seeking to remove him from the court (or at least render his judgments suspect, to put it mildly), in advance of fighting to prevent another conservative judge from being appointed to replace Justice Ginsberg? Both measures would (hopefully, from their point of view) affect the current conservative majority on the court, and if President Trump does not win re-election in 2020, might allow a Democratic Party successor to reverse it - or, at least, restore SCOTUS to a balance of perspectives, politically speaking (if not reverse the current situation).
As I said, I have no evidence whatsoever for that theory . . . but I find it compelling, nonetheless. Hey, if an "authoritative" source like the New York Times can advance opinions without a single shred of evidence to support them, why can't I?