Patterico's Pontifications


Trump Superfans on Trump and Putin

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:52 am

Trump superfans on Trump and Putin: Trump doesn’t seem to go easy on Putin. What has he ever done to help Putin?

Also Trump superfans on Trump and Putin: I think it’s awesome that Trump is threatening to pull us out of NATO.


SCANDAL!!!1!!!!11!! Kavanaugh Bought Baseball Tickets

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:44 am

The Washington Post has this incredible scandal regarding Judge Brett Kavanaugh Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court. It sounds pretty bad in this headline: Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh piled up credit card debt by purchasing Nationals tickets, White House says:

Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh incurred tens of thousands of dollars of credit card debt buying baseball tickets over the past decade and at times reported liabilities that could have exceeded the value of his cash accounts and investment assets, according to a review of Kavanaugh’s financial disclosures and information provided by the White House.

White House spokesman Raj Shah told The Washington Post that Kavanaugh built up the debt by buying Washington Nationals season tickets and tickets for playoff games for himself and a “handful” of friends. Shah said some of the debts were also for home improvements.

In 2016, Kavanaugh reported having between $60,000 and $200,000 in debt accrued over three credit cards and a loan. Each credit card held between $15,000 and $50,000 in debt, and a Thrift Savings Plan loan was between $15,000 and $50,000.

Wow. He “built up” debt that exceeded his assets. Quite irresponsible! Bad judgment!

I doubt Raj Shah said Kavanaugh “built up” the debt, because (as we will see) that did not happen. (Which means, of course, that Raj Shah does not exist, because he was possibly misquoted and people who were possibly misquoted do not exist.)

You have to pull apart the facts here to understand that there is no story. The headline (“piled up”) unjustifiably suggests that Kavanaugh accrued this credit card debt over time, for expenses he and his family irresponsibly incurred himself. The story adds to the “piled up” narrative with phrase “built up.” But let’s read on to see how this debt “piled up” and “built up” over time:

The credit card debts and loan were either paid off or fell below the reporting requirements in 2017, according to the filings, which do not require details on the nature or source of such payments. Shah told The Post that Kavanaugh’s friends reimbursed him for their share of the baseball tickets and that the judge has since stopped purchasing the season tickets.

Shah did not provide the names of the friends or additional details about the tickets. Kavanaugh, who is known to be a Nationals fan, declined to comment.

Shah said the payments for the tickets were made at the end of 2016 and paid off early the next year.

“He did not carry that kind of debt year over year,” Shah said.

So he bought expensive tickets in bulk for himself and his friends — no doubt due to bulk discounts — and then was quickly reimbursed.


Where does this “built up” and “piled up” nonsense come from? The need for drama. That’s all. The editors are asking themselves: how do we even justify publishing this nonsense? And the answer is: make it sound worse than it really is.

The worst part of all is that trifles like this distract from a far more serious lapse in judgment — one that, in a sane world, would end Kavanaugh’s nomination immediately:

At Yale, the judge was highly regarded among his classmates, his friends say. He spent nights working on the Yale Law Journal, where he served as notes editor. He made those late shifts “palatable” with a constant stream of jokes, said Brochin, who also worked on the journal.

But when it came to food, the future Supreme Court pick found hardly anything palatable, Christmas said. Kavanaugh was a “bland eater,” his roommate explained, who never ate his pasta with anything more exotic than tomato sauce or ketchup on top. At visits to Yorkside Pizza following late nights at Toad’s Place — the friends did not go often, Christmas said, as Kavanaugh had “limited dance moves” — the judge’s pizza had to be plain cheese, or sometimes just pepperoni.


This shows an unforgivable lack of judgment.

It’s not too late to get Barrett. We might have little idea how she would actually behave as a judge, but she would trigger the libs — and I bet she would never put ketchup on pasta.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

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