by Michael Walsh
As the smoke starts to clear over the senatorial battlefield, the outlines of the conflict have come into stark relief. What began, like Gettysburg, with the accidental clash of two mighty armies, has become a death struggle between the reactionary forces of cultural-Marxist leftism in their purest, most deracinated form, and the restorative powers of the American Republic-as-founded, including the rule of law, the presumption of innocence, and the orderly workings of our constitutional government. It’s a fight only one side can win, and it had better be ours.
The Pickett’s Charge of the Left came last week, with an all-out assault (to use the feminist Left’s current mot du jour) on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s record, morals, life, and future. Pinning their hopes on the plainly insincere and deceptive testimony of a fabulist—what, in fact, was “credible” about Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony?—the Left augmented her baseless charges against the judge by quickly moving the goalposts from an alleged “attempted rape” to an indictment of the radicals’ favorite bugbear, the Privileged White Male Patriarchy.
Marked by their usual crude reductionism of a human being to a bloody fanged Marxist stereotype, the Democrats stripped Kavanaugh of his humanity, hurled unsubstantiated accusationswith the assistance of a creepy porn lawyer, and preyed on the emotional natures of the most feeble-minded members of the Republican senatorial caucus. It was a despicable performance all around, and one for which they must be held accountable when the fighting finally stops.
Aiding and abetting this willful undermining of the American constitutional system, of course, was the mainstream media and its kiddie-corps allies in the blogging world. By now, it’s clear to all that the press is the engine that drives the Democrats’ agenda, undertaking “investigation” after investigation into Kavanaugh’s past, no matter how scurrilous the charge, while at the same time using the battered body and soul of the judge as a club with which to beat the president. Initially, their attack on the judge had to do with his philosophy, but that quickly morphed into the usual tropes of toxic masculinity (in high school, yet!) and now Kavanaugh is the most famous alcoholic in American public life since Ulysses S. Grant.
So the gloves are off, the statute of limitations has been permanently revoked, and everything is fair game.
Having transformed gossip and rumor into “news” over the past couple of decades, it’s been but a short step for the media to invent its own stories out of whole cloth, then happily retailing them to the True Believers for whom literally nothing about a Republican or a conservative is too fantastic to be believed. As I tweeted the other day in regards to a particularly egregious story in USA Today (one that was quickly re-edited to avoid almost certain legal consequences)
The high hurdle in all libel suits, thanks to the Sullivan decision, was to prove actual malice/reckless disregard. Media’s behavior now makes that SO much easier. Thanks, media! https://t.co/WTRikUwlWZ
— Michael Walsh (@dkahanerules) September 29, 2018
To which I added this comment in an essay at PJ Media:
If the GOP stays together—no sure bet with the likes of Jeff Flake in their ranks—and gets Kavanaugh confirmed, there really does need to be a day of reckoning for the media. They’ve been skirting the boundaries of their First Amendment protections for a long time now, and while partisan journalism is every bit as protected as “objective” reporting, malicious destruction of someone’s moral reputation, with an implied demand for legal action, is not.
Another casualty of war has been the quack “science” of psychology, of which Ford is apparently a licensed practitioner. My scorn for Viennese Voodoo (including the bogus “medical” specialty of psychiatry) is well known; it’s a cultural artifact from a specific time and place (fin-de-siecle Austria) that, like Marxism anddodecaphony, should have been swept away by World War II but somehow managed to survive, transplant itself, and prosper. The notion that a “talking cure” has any reality outside of the bordello, the confessional, and the barroom is absurd on its face, and the fact that shrinks have been fleecing the public while pretending to care about their “patients,” is surely the triumph of snake oil and Schlagobers over common sense. As I also noted on Twitter:
"Recovered memories" are what writers call "fiction."
— Michael Walsh (@dkahanerules) September 29, 2018
To accept “recovered memories” as the basis for legal accusations essentially is to descend into witchcraft, in which a hidden “reality” is somehow resurrected via conversation and hypnosis (?) to uncover a whole new host of at least semi-imaginary “traumas.” How this is different from what I or any other novelist does in the course of entering the writer’s trance and describing with the greatest sincerity and utmost possible veracity things that never happened, in the words of people who never existed, remains unexplained. But then again, there is nothing too stupid or fantastic for a modern “progressive” to believe in, should it suit her ideological purposes.
Finally, we come to the dead and wounded elephants on the field, which is the Left’s pathological fear of losing control of the one institution they absolutely must have in order to continue to foist their policy preferences on the body politic without bothering with the democratic process: the Supreme Court. William McGurn, writing in the Wall Street Journal, rightly makes the point that the Battle of Brett Kavanaugh is, at root, about abortion:
As malignant as were the campaigns against Supreme Court nominees Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas, even they didn’t face accusations as vile and unrelenting as the unsubstantiated charges against Brett Kavanaugh. Adding to the injustice is that the frenzy surrounding his nomination isn’t really about him.
It’s about Roe v. Wade. The 1973 Supreme Court decision upended the laws of all 50 states on behalf of a constitutional right to abortion the Constitution somehow neglects to mention. Since then, the advocates of a living Constitution posit that while our Founding document is infinitely malleable, this one ruling is fixed and sacred.
Judge Kavanaugh’s great misfortune is to have been nominated at a moment when the party in opposition frets this fixed and sacred ruling could be overturned.
As well it should. Roe was wrongly decided. The court should never even have heard the case, but it came just a few years after Griswold v. Connecticut, when the sexual revolution was in full swing; the decision perceived a “right to privacy” in the emanations and penumbras of the Constitution. Seeking to protect doctors from legal consequences of abortion, the Warren Burger Court tossed out state laws prohibiting abortion across the land, replacing them with a one-size-fits-all ruling that gradually has been enlarged and expanded; for the atheist Left, the right of a woman to kill her unborn child is now the most sacred of their diabolical sacraments. So Kavanaugh must be sacrificed on the altar of Baal or Belial, because as a possible fifth vote against Roe he represents a mortal threat to the leftist ascendancy.
It’s true the war isn’t over, even should this engagement be won. After Gettysburg, there were still two long years left in the Civil War; Grant was still fighting in Vicksburg. If the next justice to retire or die is one of the liberals, that fight—which could cement a 6-3 majority against Roe and many other ill-considered, anti-democratic decisions—will make the Battle of Brett Kavanaugh look like First Bull Run: a garden party that turned into a shooting war.
The hysterical Left needs to think very carefully about how far they want to push this. Grant is on his way to Virginia, Sherman is marching through Georgia, and Appomattox Court House beckons.
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Michael Walsh is a journalist, author, and screenwriter. He was for 16 years the music critic and foreign correspondent for Time Magazine, for which he covered the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union. His works include the novels As Time Goes By, And All the Saints (winner, 2004 American Book Award for fiction), and the bestselling “Devlin” series of NSA thrillers; as well as the recent nonfiction bestseller, The Devil’s Pleasure Palace. A sequel, The Fiery Angel, was published by Encounter in May 2018. Follow him on Twitter at @dkahanerules. For licensing opportunities for our original content, please contact [email protected].