[#] Arlen Specter: genius or cretin?

I'm sitting in my office this morning with a lot of work to do, but I'm trying to figure out if Arlen Specter is an incompetant doofus who can't find his party platform with either hand, or if he is the most astute politician since FDR.

See: on the one hand, the hearings this week in the Judiciary committee were a disgrace to the Senate and to this country's constitutional process -- and the person that is responsible for the way the hearing is run is, of course, the chairman of the Committee. That's Arlen Specter. The shame of those hearings was the rank petulance of guys like Chuck "I'm Hillary's little sister" Schumer and the ever-corpulant and self-parodying Ted "make mine a double (quarter-pounder)" Kennedy, attempting to smear a judge who has a spotless record of integrity and restraint -- something neither one of those two counterfeit conscience-bearers could muster for 5 minutes let alone 25 years of public service. If I see another picture of Schumer waving a tract-sized copy of the constitution around as if it was a hanky and he was preaching at a tent meeting, I'm going to call Al D'Amato up and tell him to tell Schumer what I really think of him.

But, on the other hand, there has been a great problem for the Democrats this week: all their shrill chiding of Alito has demonstrated what complete wash-outs they are ideologically. In the end, it is clear that they are the ones who do not know what the consctitution says or ought to be understood as saying, and that for them to use tactics like "I have a picture here, Judge Alito, of you standing on a street corner where the KKK once protested against civil rights -- how could you ever associate yourself with such a street corner?" only paraded out, for all the country to see, the stark choice between the garbage heap of the left and the shanty-town of the right.

So in that, Specter may be a genius. He may have purposefully let the hearings run rampant over Alito in order to prove to the world that our left-wing policitians are fatuous gas bags with the emotional turpitude of 12-year-old mean girls.

I wouldn't bank on that, but it's a logically-possible option.