Our Failed Political Class And “Elites”

Some links and thoughts from Instapundit:

We need to take a serious look at how we select these people. Our current method is not working.

Well, it’s working for them. For now.

[Update a few minutes later]

OK, Bob Mueller is looking worse and worse:

Four top lawyers hired by Mueller have contributed tens of thousands of dollars over the years to the Democratic Party and Democratic candidates, including former President Barack Obama and President Donald Trump’s 2016 opponent, Hillary Clinton.

One of the hires, Jeannie Rhee, also worked as a lawyer for the Clinton Foundation and helped persuade a federal judge to block a conservative activist’s attempts to force Bill and Hillary Clinton to answer questions under oath about operations of the family-run charity.

Campaign-finance reports show that Rhee gave Clinton the maximum contributions of $2,700 in 2015 and again last year to support her presidential campaign. She also donated $2,300 to Obama in 2008 and $2,500 in 2011. While still at the Justice Department, she gave $250 to the Democratic National Committee Services Corp.

Rhee also has contributed to a trio of Democratic senators: Mark Udall of New Mexico, Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.

Congress should ask him to testify about this.

35 thoughts on “Our Failed Political Class And “Elites””

  1. It is all part of the coup. This is why it doesn’t matter if we have reservations about our guys. They must be fully supported and encouraged to fight to win.

  2. A convention of states looks better all the time.

    And no, we won’t have a runaway convention.

    1. We should only have a convention if we know and can assure the outcome we want. It’s the old lawyer rule, never ask a question you don’t know how it will be answered.

      1. You need 37 state legislatures to ratify any laws. There aren’t going to be any rogue laws passed.

        1. Bringing to mind the phrase, “famous last words.” You may be right Jon, but I find myself with a deficit of trust these days.

          I don’t think mechanisms are the key to a solution although they are certainly a part of it. Getting people on board the solution and willing to make a focused fight for it seems central to me.

          We’re herding cats here.

  3. Rather than just looking at donations, how many of his staff are activist lawyers? Anyone working or donating money to the Clintons has a huge conflict of interest but anyone who works as part of the DNC lawfare machine would too.

    1. Here is a annual pro bono report for Jenner and Block boasting of their long term commitment for providing free legal work to defend abortion.

  4. Uh, doesn’t Mueller need, like, you know… lawyers to run his investigation? And aren’t something like 75% of all lawyers, like, you know… Democrats? And rich ones (i.e. campaign-donating ones), at that?

    Is anybody even slightly surprised by this? Should we be requiring political litmus tests to work on prosecutions, or might it be a slightly better idea to be hiring the most competent people instead? If you do the latter, most of the people you select will be Democrats.

    1. Sound and rational reasoning and I don’t buy the least bit of it for a picosecond. These guys have proved their evil intent more than Lucy holding the ball for Charlie.

      This is exactly why the right has to be radical in eradicating the left.

      There is absolutely no room left for “benefit of the doubt.”

      The modern definition of benefit of the doubt is, “Here’s the knife. Stick me with it.”

      1. “Eradicate”? You mean put them in jail? Kill them? Outlaw their parties? Put them in reeducation camps to cure them of their thoughtcrime? Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women?

        This is why the extremists from both sides of the political spectrum are going to ruin us all. Why won’t you settle for just beating their ideas with your better ideas? Granted, this requires a certain amount of political skill. Are you saying that the Right is politically incompetent, but they deserve to win anyway?

        If that’s the case, this doesn’t stay contained as an ideological or political fight. It moves on to violence.

        Which would be insane.

        1. Why won’t you settle for just beating their ideas with your better ideas?

          Love to. But you have to be living in a cave not to understand that not how they roll.

          FOR THE LEFT: Lose an election? No problem. We’ll just get judges that don’t follow the law to make stuff up? We’ll ruin the lives of decent people just because their better ideas are winning. Our thugs will act violently while we accuse you of violence.

          You mean put them in jail?

          When they deserve it like Hillary? Not just yes, but hell yes.

          Kill them?

          When they’ve earned it by traditional human standards? Abso-freakin-lutely!

          Outlaw their parties?

          This one is trickier and we need to throw in religion. Are all things protected speech or activities? No, they are not. So a knee jerk (“It’s protected”) response is not appropriate. There are limits that we can not allow to be crossed. Usurping our laws with the antagonistic laws of others would fit that category. There should never be such a thing as no go zones where laws are not enforced.

          Put them in reeducation camps to cure them of their thoughtcrime?

          It’s the left with their red button fantasies that believes this. The right just wants equal justice for all.

          Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women?

          Now yer talkin’. I knew we could find some common ground!!!

          1. I’m sorry, I was going to leave this alone, but I just can’t.

            You seem to be dancing all over the place to avoid that “eradicate” word you used initially. And that word is pretty specific: if you eradicate the Left, you are effectively driving them out of the polity (either by killing, imprisoning, disenfranchising, or exiling them), or you are suppressing their ideas, on pain of driving them out of the polity, which is pretty much the same thing.

            That’s a loathsome, despicable position. It’s also cowardly. I’m pretty confident that my ideas (which are largely economically conservative and socially don’t care) are correct and will prevail. Are you so uncertain of yours that you need to suppress your opponents?

          2. you are effectively driving them out of the polity

            Exactly right and exactly what I meant. You’re a smart guy and it’s entirely your choice if you choose to twist what I’m saying out of context.

            I absolutely, fully and completely support the left right to make an argument. But that’s not all the left does.

            When a Bernie supporter shoots the GOP whjp and is killed; That is an appropriate response to the left’s action.

            In the spectrum between arguing and shooting are some actions that require eradication.

    2. “Should we be requiring political litmus tests to work on prosecutions,”
      For politically motivated prosecutions, with profound political implications, yes.

      1. OK, describe how this works. Do you pick lousy lawyers because of their political reliability? How many from each “side”? And what happens when they’re not up to the task? Or do you want them not to be up to the task in the first place?

        There is unquestionably a political side to this, but it is, at its heart, a straight-up national security investigation. If there’s nothing there, I’d like to know as soon as possible. If there is something there, I’d also like to know as soon as possible.

        1. There is unquestionably a political side to this, but it is, at its heart, a straight-up national security investigation.

          Will it be looking into the Hillary campaigns ties to Russia? All of her policies favored the Russians and her various organizations had much closer financial dealings than a low level Trump staffer going on RT.

        2. describe how this works

          Believe it or not, there are still people that believe in not having a political agenda. We could honestly look at the integrity of elections and foreign influences instead of using it as a weapon against political enemies.

          If it’s just going to be a political weapon it would be better if we didn’t do it at all. States have their responsibilities and don’t actually need the federal govt. to investigate this.

          1. Do you have any evidence that any of Mueller’s hires have a political agenda, other than contributing to political campaigns?

            If support for a candidate automatically means that you have an agenda, then the only people available to conduct investigations are the ones who are too incurious to have any hope of conducting it properly.

          2. support for a candidate automatically means that you have an agenda

            If you support a moderate, you are probably a moderate.

            So yes, that’s exactly what it means. You’re brilliant!

          3. If support for a candidate automatically means that you have an agenda,

            It shouldn’t but a large portion of the left believe they have a moral calling to engage in activism outside of what is legal and ethical. This creates more conflicts of interest in this matter than already exist with Mueller himself.

    3. After the last 8 years, and especially the last 6 months, I don’t trust a Democrat to act in good faith. Lawfare is a tactic common among the left, and becoming more so on the right. Pulling staff from groups that engage in this activity isn’t being impartial.

      It is like having people from Judicial Watch help run a DOJ investigation into Hillary Clinton.

  5. I love how people signal they are BS by picking a BS nom de guerre. Note the foolishness of the argument; he’s determined that 75% of a population is Democrat yet asks if others are demanding a litmus test. If he didn’t use a litmus test, where did his number come from?

    1. Leland,

      You are mixing up the chemistry sense of the “litmus test” metaphor with the political sense of the metaphor.

      The chemistry sense of the “litmus test” metaphor refers to simply categorizing things. The 75% figure came from a study of lawyers, where it is appropriate to use a “litmus test” in the chemistry sense of litmus test, where lawyers are simply categorized.

      The political sense of expression ” litmus test”doesn’t refer to simply categorizing and stopping there. It refers to categorizing and then rejecting a candidate or proposed appointee if they are not in the preferred category. And that’s the behavior which TheRadicalModerate is questioning.

      Glad to help!

      1. It refers to categorizing and then rejecting a candidate or proposed appointee

        Or accepting a candidate because they passed the litmus test. Leland was right, accepting activist lawyers is just another form of litmus test.

    2. What Bob-1 said below. You have to at least scan the graphs at the link (which is, frankly, about all I did) so you can understand the argument before commenting on it.

      BTW, the 75% number I did from eyeballing the graphs. Both the mode and mean CFscores for lawyers is <0.5, which classifies them as "liberal". I made the assumption that most liberals are Democrats. I didn't run the cumulative distribution.

      1. So if 75% of a group are idiots or worse, we should make sure the idiots are fairly represented in our decision making processes?

        Even while watching their nothing burger smear campaign in action?

  6. We need to take a serious look at how we select these people. Our current method is not working.

    This is something I have heard for decades. Depending on who is complaining, different solutions are proposed. Way back when I was in school, people would suggest education/certification but the problem with this is our education/indoctrination system. Things like MPA programs also channel people right from college into government, meaning they have no real understanding of they people they want to control.

    Our politicians are a reflection of our society. In order to have a better class of leaders, we need a better pool of people to draw from. The cultural marxists running all levels of schools don’t help with this and neither does the war on private non-Democrat social institutions. We need better schools and more involvement in apolitical social institutions.

    It is a bit like having a non-partisan farm team to benefit all of society.

    But out of a country of over 300 million, there has to be better leaders out there. It would take someone(s) with means and connections to search them out and get them involved in holding public office. It is not really in the best interest of existing power structures to do this.

    Trump has shown that politicians aren’t the only ones who can play the game and that money doesn’t always win. Whether more non-politicians run on the right, I don’t know but there are a lot of non-politicians on the left that will be running for office.

    1. Oh, another problem is information. I don’t know how it is in other states but in Washington it is very hard to get good information about what is going on in politics. The publications all lean to the left here. Making information more accessible to people not connected to the power players would help with accountability, engagement, and electing better leaders.

      So, I guess more local bloggers/podcasts/youtube.

    2. We should not reject the idea that perhaps there is no good way to select politicians? Philosophers have been predicting the results we’re seeing for thousands of years. Perhaps we should just accept that truth?

      Leaving us where? That still leaves us with a fight for what is right, but one that needs to be fought with eyes open, knowing human nature. Our founders warned us. Reagan warned us. All we really have had to do is pay attention.

      1. What is the Milton Friedman quote? Incentivize the wrong people to make the right decisions or something.

  7. …regulation 28 CFR 45.2, says that Justice Department employees cannot participate in a “criminal investigation or prosecution if he has a personal or political relationship with …Any person or organization substantially involved in the conduct that is the subject of the investigation or prosecution.”

    If Mueller is honest, he quits because of his massive conflict of interest, and we lose an honest investigator. And if he doesn’t quit, we know the fix is in.

    I already know.

  8. Mueller would also be a hypocrite if he goes forward.

    Trump could actually use this fact to fire him and along with the clear conflict of interest could survive the media outrage.

    But it would require the feckless republicans to unitedly support the move.

  9. Figured bob would show up to bring the stupid. A litmus test determines if something is alkaline or acidic. Somehow, the other nitwit already knows 75% of lawyers are acidic, excuse me, Democrats. If I gave you 100 bottles of clear liquid and asked you to tell me how many are acidic, how would you go about determining 75% are? Ah you would perform the litmus test. Then count up the results. Nitwit decision that his 75% of deplorables explains Mueller’s 100% deplorables is still based on a litmus test. Of course Wodun gets this, but saying he is smarter than bob or nitwit isn’t fair praise to Wodun.
    Mueller has more issues of his own due to his close relationship with Comey. That one relationship goes against federal code and he should resign.

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