January 14, 2006

Lithwick on Alito

My friend, Brad, points me to the latest from Dahlia Lithwick about the Alito hearings, with the following admoniton:
I know you described this writer as a "screecher" last time around, but I think she's pretty on point here.
While this latest certainly qualifies as a more clever exposition than the previous column he pointed me to (which, for the record, I believe I labelled "hysterical" rather than characterizing the author, herself, as a "screecher"), I think her entire mildly sarcastic argument stumbles on this point:
Federalists espouse a view of the Constitution and the allocation of government powers that largely differs from yours; it may indeed differ from that of most Americans.
That, I believe, is the root of the problem. Liberals don't want to believe that these Federalist creatures have views that are actually in the mainstream. They try to pretend that spousal notification of abortion (with significant outs for risk of abuse, etc.) are beyond the pale because they threaten the gospel of Roe v. Wade — while 70% of the American populace supports them. Many of the positions that they try to portray as "out of the mainstream" are, for better or for worse, very much in the mainstream right now.

If Dahlia Lithwick got out of the back offices of Slate (and perhaps Washington, DC as well) she'd realize that the Federalist, domesticated or wild, is not such an unusual creature.

Finally, her return to the tired (and bogus) talking point about the strip search of a 10-year old proves where she's coming from (the left) and what she's interested in (the polemic). So while it's more interesting in style and more readable than her earlier work, it's ultimately.... kind of lame.

Posted by richard at 12:25 AM | Comments (2)