September 28, 2018

There were a lot of things going on in that hearing yesterday. I was getting my hair cut and watching the hearing on my phone. The young stylist asked me what I was watching, and we got into a conversation.

"There was this boy who raped me in high school," she said. "But he died, and I don't have to worry about him any more. I have a husband and three kids, and he's dead."

"Good for you!" I said. A happy ending. Unfortunately, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford didn't get much of a happy ending yesterday, thanks to the Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee who were much more interested in pleasing King Trump than in getting to the bottom of Ford's story.

Years ago, I used to date an alcoholic judge, and I recognized immediately the indignant self-righteousness posturing, the entitlement, the constant prevaricating of an alcoholic in that hearing. ("I went to Yale!") Not only do I think Brett Kavanaugh was an alcoholic in high school, odds are he's still drinking to excess. (I noticed him slurring his words in the first hearing.)

I actually didn't notice my ex was an alcoholic at first, because I don't drink. Through the years, my friends trained me to stop observing how much people drank, because as they pointed out, to someone who doesn't drink, it all looks like a lot.

How did I finally realize he was an alcoholic? By his behavior. I started reading about alcoholism, and boy, was he a textbook case. (Several years later, when he was hospitalized with cirrhosis, he told people he had AIDS -- because he would rather be thought of as a person who had too much sex than too much alcohol.)

And so it goes.

Anyway, I had friends on the Main Line, and the kind of drinking attributed to Brett Kavanaugh and his buds was very common -- even among the parents. One of my friends told me she often had to put her siblings to bed because "Mommy and Daddy were passed out on the Oriental rug in a pile of their own vomit."

I was shocked. My friend rushed to assure me that "everyone's parents were like that. It was just how they had fun."

"Fun." Her father ended up dying of wet brain disease.

I used to drink quite a bit, back before I had my kids. I stopped drinking after my first blackout. That was a really scary thing, to not be able remember what you did the night before. Just like that, I stopped.

Brett Kavanaugh didn't stop. So maybe he's not lying when he says he didn't try to rape Christine Blasey Ford. Maybe he just doesn't remember. But he clearly knows he drinks too much. Look at how belligerent he got when Sen. Amy Klobuchar asked him about his drinking. Hmm.

(Pro tip: When do you know you have a drinking problem? When you have to rationalize and defend it to everyone else.)

As Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse points out, the Republicans on the Senate Judiciary committee didn't, wouldn't subpoena Kavanaugh's partner in alleged crime, Mark Judge.

"Imagine if there was a third person in the room with President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. Do you think that Kavanaugh would ever entertain himself with a lawyer's letter from that person? Of course not. You'd cross-examine fully, get FBI agents out there, issue subpoenas, do everything to get at the truth. They've done everything they can to avoid getting to the truth," he said.

"Since he's also the named witness to the alleged sexual assault, he becomes a pretty important person to get the truth from. It's not like we're just rushing around, trying to find people who knew Brett Kavanaugh in high school and have the FBI investigate them. This is the guy who she puts in the room when Brett Kavanaugh is assaulting her, and the idea that he's never been properly deposed, never been properly interrogated, never had a statement under oath, never been touched, contacted by the FBI, never been subpoenaed by the committee, there's no other circumstance where Kavanaugh himself would have accepted that as legitimate behavior."

The fact that the only way we can get another perspective on this is to interview another blackout drunk, a man who's written extensively about his own history with alcohol, is a damned shame.

Oh, and in closing, I'll tell you something I didn't know when I dated that alcoholic judge: The term "sober as a judge" is meant to be ironic.

Color me surprised.

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