Blogs > Liberty and Power > Miers

Oct 19, 2005 4:53 pm


The Miers nomination has managed to horrify almost every big-firm or ex-big-firm lawyer in the country. Because those of us who have been there all know/worked for someone just like her. Someone with such a vacuum of an internal life that they'd happily agree to write those insipid bar journal articles and sit on all those friggin' committees. It's atavistic ambition without even the touch of evil that might make it interesting. Tracy Flick without the spunk.

Those Texas Bar Journal articles Miers wrote (which can be found here) are about as badly written as David Brooks said they were, though I've seen much worse. The managing partner of my old law firm used to write free verse about leadership and service to the client. I remember talking to a colleague about having it translated back into the original German and posting it throughout the firm, but we were both too enervated to follow through.

But the Miers articles are bad nonetheless, as can be seen here [.pdf]:

Two years ago the name"Jim Parsons" became synonymous with"inclusion."

Which must have been confusing for old Jim.

He made specific, sweeping efforts to inform all Texas lawyers that the State Bar of Texas welcomed involvement by all its members, regardless of geography, area of practice, race, ethnicity, or gender.

Those efforts were both specific and sweeping, no mean feat. And one wonders what"area of practice" is doing there amidst"race, ethnicity, and gender," in this inspiring tale of triumph over intolerance, unless there's some longstanding legacy of prejudice against, say, real estate lawyers on the part of the Texas Bar Association.

The outstretched hands of Jim and his wife, Karen, spoke loudly to many lawyers who earlier felt excluded or who had been uninterested.

Why couldn't the talking hands keep it down and leave the uninterested lawyers alone?

But the sentence that makes me regret my pettiness comes a few paragraphs later. It suggests that the Aspens never turned, and the roots never connected, and that there was nothing, nothing ever, beyond the next meeting of the Professional Development Committee. It's a sentence that breaks my heart:

Several weeks ago I looked around the room at the Bar Leaders Conference and felt a great sense of hope.

That may be the saddest thing I have ever read.

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More Comments:

Oscar Chamberlain - 10/20/2005

I think Robert Heinlein had the idea of making the crminal justice system a lottery with the outcome based on the betting.

He put it in California, if I remember correctly.

I don't think he had Miers in mind, however.

David T. Beito - 10/20/2005

Perhaps she can bring that little lottery machine with the ping pong balls into the SCOTUS chambers to help her decide when she faces particularly "confusing" cases.

Keith Halderman - 10/20/2005

For God's sake Gene the woman was Lottery Commissioner certainly that qualifies her for the Supreme Court.

David T. Beito - 10/20/2005

Gene. Your final line is a keeper.

William Marina - 10/20/2005

Dear Gene,
Your comments on Harriet M and the TV show, CinC,/i> are right on. I only wish you all at Cato, espeically your own laudatory article, had done that kind of research on the plagiarist, con-man, Hernando de Soto, a year and a half ago, before awarding him the Friedman Prize. Oh well, maybe he's bringing Democracy, or is it Capitalism?, to Mubarek's son in behalf of GeoII/43.
Regards, Bill