Friday, January 20, 2006

Dawn of the Political Dead

National Review has a New Blog! It's called Reconcilable Differences and is done by Kellyanne and George Conway. Here's a sample:

As is reflected on the official website of the Arkansas Judiciary, the five-year suspension of the law license of one William Jefferson Clinton of Chappaqua, New York, expires on Thursday. (The suspension, you may recall, was a condition of a settlement between then-President Clinton and Independent Counsel Robert Ray on January 19, 2001, the day before Mr. Clinton left office.) The New York Sun reports about it all here, and notes that, as is typical in most states, applications for readmission to the Arkansas bar after a suspension, even a relatively long one like Clinton's, are routinely granted. But the article observes that he may have difficulty gaining admission to another state's bar, such as that of New York or of the District of Columbia, on reciprocity grounds, since he hasn't practiced law in quite a while — meaning that he might have to take a bar exam or two if he wants to practice outside Arkansas. Somehow I can't see that spectacle coming to pass.

Today, by the way, is the eighth anniversary of the deposition testimony that earned Mr. Clinton his suspension.

Why this is such a newsworthy event to me is a bit odd. Does anyone really think Clinton has to care about practicing law ever again? Aren't there more lucrative activities? But anyway, this may make you wonder why the author is so Clinton-obsessed and longs for the glory days of battling Clinton in the 90s. Well, Glenn Greenwald has a verbal morning star of an answer.

How does he describe it in a nutshell?

National Review has created a museum dedicated to the Republican political gutter of the 1990s in the form of a new blog hosted by two of the trashy lowlifes who worked during the entire Clinton Presidency to turn our national political dialogue into one big Jerry Springer Show.

On George:

Since the early-1990s, George Conway has been a partner at the prominent Manhattan law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, where he worked with rejected Bush judicial nominee Miguel Estrada (I was an Associate at that firm for a couple of years after law school in the mid-1990s but had minimal personal interaction with Conway and, to my recollection, none with Estrada). Conway came to be celebrated in Republican circles when it was uncovered that, while at Wachtell Lipton, he had been secretly working to bring about the Paula Jones sexual harassment lawsuit (which ended up being summarily dismissed by a federal court as so lacking in evidence that no reasonable jury could ever find in favor of Jones), and had deceitfully concealed his work from his own partners. He also secretly worked with Linda Tripp and helped engineer her initial meeting with Ken Starr.

This great and courageous crusader for his political principles hid his work on the Paula Jones case, covering it up because he was petrified that his corporate clients and law firm partners would discover the company he was keeping. Out a fear of offending them, and knowing that his partners would not approve of the work he was doing, he worked secretly in the dark alleys late at night to bring about the trashy, lowly scandals which became a Republican obsession.

On Kellyanne:

Conway's wife and now co-blogger, Kellyanne, is a perfect match for him. Having spent the latter half of the 1990s (before she married George) peddling herself around as one of the soldiers in the army of young, blondish, mascara-drenched Republican loyalists who made a career for themselves digging into Bill Clinton’s sex life, she now runs around creating groups like "Women for Alito" and mindlessly reciting GOP talking points on Fox.

Bob Somerby at Daily Howler has described Kellyanne as "one of our most disingenuous pundits," and has documented multiple untruths she has spewed.

Read more of Greenwald's character assassination of these two clowns. They want to give it out, they can get it back. Greenwald is on point. National Review was something I respected, despite it's hackery, as being more of an intellectual conservative establishment. What do they need a gossip blog about Democrats for? And, if you read the postings, that's mostly what it is. High-level thought, it's not. It isn't even smokescreen repetition of tired talking points. But perhaps they hired these two trash-talkers in case Hillary runs, in which case they'll be part of the grand (and probably successful) Republican effort to force everyone to refight the battles of the 90s again. As an aside though, I just discovered Greenwald's blog recently through John Cole, and it's so fantastically awesome no matter what your political slant is you'll appreciate it. Greenwald is a liberal, but more in the self-reflective Matt Yglesias mode.