Thursday, November 20, 2008

Why I Wish I Were kathy G.

I knew there was a reason I detested Cass Sunstein but without the internet and other people to do my remembering for me I was left merely frothing, without remembering why. Kathy G. lays it out:

That said, though, I haven't been impressed with what I've read of Sunstein's writings, and while he's often characterized as a liberal, many of the ideas and policies he supports don't seem very liberal to me. For example, although he doesn't believe Roe v. Wade should be overturned, he has argued that the case was "wrongly decided," and he's made the dubious argument that the Roe decision ended up being counterproductive because it caused a political backlash. He's written in quite a Heather-ish way about the threat that the internet allegedly poses to democracy -- see this issue of the Boston Review for his argument, and for the responses of a number of scholars who do a fairly thorough job of debunking it.

Then there's Sunstein's most recent book which concerns behavioral economics and which, as Stoller points out, accepts many dubious conservative frames and notions about markets. This is especially troubling news to keep in mind if Sunstein gets on the Supreme Court, given how far right the Court has lurched on economic issues over the last couple of decades, especially recently. Sunstein has also shown extremely poor judgment by supporting John Roberts' nomination to the Court and by saying flattering (but misleading) things about the judicial philosophy of Samuel Alito. And let's not forget Sunstein's warm regard for the work of John Yoo, either.

Read the whole thing.