February 24, 2009

Patty McIlheran vs. The Clenis

Why, it seems like only three days ago that Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel editorial board member David Haynes admonished the Quesosphere-at-large to cease and desist from "deliberately twisting the facts to try to make their opponents look stupid."

Yet Mr. Haynes's own celebrated colleague, unintentional funnyman and "right-wing guy" Patrick McIlheran, still hasn't gotten the memo.

This morning McIlheran — as is his tediously predictable wont — defers approvingly to the turgid conservative organ National Review wherein the ridiculous Jonah Goldberg wildly hyperbolizes:
For example, when [President Bill] Clinton held one of his famous town-hall discussions, he invited Abigail Thernstrom — a polite, sophisticated scholar of racial issues and a champion of race-neutrality — to participate in a frank conversation about race. But the moment she expressed an honest objection to racial quotas, Clinton browbeat her as some kind of crypto-racist idiot.
Abigail Thernstrom — it almost goes without saying — is a fellow National Review (and Wall Street Journal editorial page) contributor as well as a reliable, uniformly-stepping Kulturkampf foot soldier.

So how exactly did Clinton "browbeat her" like a "crypto-racist idiot"?

He asked whether her position on affirmative action would find suitable application in the U.S. military and if so, might she countenance its effect of maintaining an all-white officer corps.

Six years later when the United States Supreme Court took up affirmative action in Grutter v. Bollinger, precisely the questions Clinton had raised were addressed during oral argument. At length.

The Justices were referring to a Friend of the Court brief filed by a collection of retired officers describing the affirmative action policies employed by the armed forces and concluding that without such policies, there was no way to guarantee "an adequate number of minorities in the academies to furnish ultimately a reasonable number of minorities in the officer corps," as Justice Scalia put it.

The majority opinion in Grutter v. Bollinger — which even Scalia joined in part — allowed the affirmative action admissions policies at the University of Michigan law school, and the retired officers' amicus brief was arguably the lynchpin upon which that decision turned.

However, don't expect either McIlheran or his buffoonish mentor Jonah Goldberg to characterize Justice Scalia & Co. as "browbeating" the "crypto-racist idiot" attorneys for the petitioners in Grutter.

Because, you see, Grutter v. Bollinger doesn't implicate The Clenis.

P.S. Where is the Journal-Sentinel's antidote to McIlheran?


Anonymous said...

"polite, sophisticated scholar of racial issues"

Anonymous said...

...the ridiculous Jonah Goldberg

This Heather MacDonald to whom McIlheran also links seems every bit the swollen gasbag of self-parodying canards that Goldberg is.

Oh, and she's a "Fellow" at the Manhattan Institute. Gosh, the intellect!