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Why not replace Elena Kagan with Paul the octopus?

Turns out that an English-born, Germany-residing octopus named Paul has correctly predicted the outcome of every match the German World Cup team has played in this year's tournament. My first question is: Does Paul have a travel tank that I can strap, Mitt Romney-style, to the top of my Atlantic City-bound car? My second is: Why isn’t this octopus at Elena Kagan’s confirmation hearings? After all, we’d be more likely to get simple, yes-or-no answers from a canny cephalopod than from the solicitor general.

Would Kagan be a "progressive" justice? The nominee objects to the terminology. Paul can express no such qualms. After coming to terms with the metaphysical crisis that no doubt attends when your only means of communication consists of consuming morsels of seafood from one of two labeled containers, Paul would have no doubt selected the one that read "yes."

Does Kagan believe the Supreme Court made the right call in the Citizens United case? The solicitor general discussed what she argued in her capacity as the government’s lawyer in the case but not what she really thought. Undaunted by such nuance, after an hour or so of drifting around his rock garden, Paul would have planted his suction cups on the "no" container.

What is Kagan’s approach to gun control? The nominee wouldn’t touch the Heller ruling. Paul would have inked his way toward the "right to bear arms is a collective right, but if the court determines that it is an individual right it ought to be incorporated" container.

Of course, the White House would never allow an octopus to serve as a surrogate for Kagan. Because if senators asked Paul whether the proceedings were a vapid farce, all eight tentacles would surely embrace the "yes" container.

By Stephen Stromberg  | June 29, 2010; 5:06 PM ET
Categories:  Stromberg  | Tags:  Stephen Stromberg  
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Next: What Kagan should have said

Comments

Octopuses can unscrew jars too.

Can Kagan unscrew a jar? Huh?

Posted by: Gover | June 29, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

What sense can I make of this blather?

Posted by: gary4books | June 29, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone actually not know how Kagan will vote on issues? I can tell you how she will vote in every case. Elections have consequences.

Posted by: groovercg | June 29, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

nothing against kagan shes just a woman and they are disasters when it comes to being in charge they have to show their not a wimp and they act irrationally ever got a lady judge/ boss/ cop they're a disaster so please no woman in the court

Posted by: askan4trouble | June 29, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

This blog is embarrassing to the writer and really stupid. Don't write a blog if you don't have anything intelligent to say and you don't understand politics at all. If you want to be a partisan hack there are better forums. The Washington Post is better than this, and I hope that they realize that soon.

Posted by: sweidner | June 30, 2010 2:14 AM | Report abuse

to askan4trouble

"

nothing against kagan shes just a woman and they are disasters when it comes to being in charge they have to show their not a wimp and they act irrationally ever got a lady judge/ boss/ cop they're a disaster so please no woman in the court"

Your intelligence, clarity of thought, and articulateness are frightening.

Posted by: Mark35 | June 30, 2010 2:40 AM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, WaPo isn't better than this dismal dimmwitted political hackery. Smirking twits peddling triped up nonsense as if it were FOX itself. Pathetic excuse for editorial content.

The of vetting a Supreme Court nominee is to plumb the depth of the nominees judicial nature. Does the nominee see issues impartially, can the nominee keep her thumb off the scale of justice. Something Chief Justice Roberts is blatantly unwilling to do.

The grandstanding of Sen Sessions is political theatre and a poor one at that. That the Post prints this garbage is offensive to the nose.

Posted by: right_as_rain | June 30, 2010 4:44 AM | Report abuse

Frankly, Paul would be better suited for duty as a Senator. Much of the speechmaking coming from Capitol Hill only contributes to climate change, so Paul would be helping to save the planet.

Posted by: Puller58 | June 30, 2010 5:44 AM | Report abuse

After the beatings that Bork and Justice Thomas got, it's the Libs who should get the blame for a vapid farce.

Posted by: ronjaboy | June 30, 2010 6:05 AM | Report abuse

The GOP would only confirm the octopus if he hated Thurgood Marshall. Do we have an answer on that?

Posted by: baldinho | June 30, 2010 6:17 AM | Report abuse

I believe it was Abe Lincoln who said:

"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."

Stephen Stromberg and the WaPo should have heeded this sage advice!

Posted by: suec716 | June 30, 2010 7:19 AM | Report abuse


The tragedy of senility is revealed by Stromberg with this gibberish.

Posted by: AugustWest1 | June 30, 2010 7:25 AM | Report abuse

Perfect! With the deep-sea Paul in the chair, that makes the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee the rest of the cast of "SpongeBob SquarePants." Sen. Sessions is a dead ringer for Squidward and Leahy isn't far behind as the "porous and yellow" eponymous Sponge himself.

"Are ye ready, kids?"
"Aye,aye, Capt'n!"
"I can't hear you!"
"AYE, AYE, CAPT'N!"
"OOOOO....."

("We seem to be taking on a awful lot of water here, sir!")

Posted by: donmotaka@comcast.net | June 30, 2010 7:59 AM | Report abuse

I watched some of the confirmation hearings on PBS the other day. I must say Ms. Kagan came across incoherently, furtive, and clueless. She personifies the typical Obozo nominee for anything. Sadly, she will probably be confirmed and take the seat on the court that should rightly go to a well informed, lucid, and loquacious jurist.

Posted by: panamajack | June 30, 2010 8:10 AM | Report abuse

@askan4trouble:

Too late, Düüüde....by about 20 years!!!!

Sorry to burst your bubble, but (generally speaking) a person's gender has absolutely NOTHING to do with either their sense of fairness or their understanding/application of the Law.

And FTR, I am a straight white male.


I wish I had a time machine so I could send you back to the 1950's. You'd obviously be more comfortable there than in the 21'st century...

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 30, 2010 8:22 AM | Report abuse

Feed Stromberg to the octopus. What a waste of column inches.

Posted by: LeftGuy | June 30, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Huh? What? Can you repeat that? Oh, nevermind.

Posted by: talbritton | June 30, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Let's see...Egan's an octopus...Alito's a varmit...Scalia's a skunk...Roberts's a wolf in sheep's clothing...and Thomas's a pet rock (only not as vocal).

I checked LinkedIn for Strombergs. Is he the Salvation Army mail clerk Stromberg, or the writer for BigBangFilms Stromberg?

Posted by: mystic01 | June 30, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Has anyone checked to see if Kagan filed her taxes?

Posted by: FLvet | June 30, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Same song, second verse. The same could be said for every prospective supreme court justice.

Posted by: JilliB | June 30, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

This guy really excels at being unfunny.

Posted by: dmblum | June 30, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

groover, you should be paid big money to be on all of the morning talk shows since you're obviously a mind reader. You can even read minds of people who are hundreds of miles away. Astounding! I bet you can read my mind when it comes to what I think about you and your post.
and askan4trouble, that's exactly why we need a woman on the supreme court, because amazingly enough there are still cave men like you who believe gender should be a primary consideration in giving out jobs that involve any kind of power or authority. Sorry to be the one to break it to you, but it's illegal to discriminate based on gender in the United States. BTW, have you ever heard of Sandra Day O'Connor? Do you realize that there's a female on the court now? Do you realize you're one of 3 humans in the known universe who say don't confirm Kagan because she's a female? Helloooooh! It's 2010 cavey, the civil war happened 150 years ago. You should migrate to the 21st century, or at least the 20th.

Posted by: red2million | June 30, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

I don't have a problem with an octopus on the Supreme Court....we already have a bunch of leeches in Congress.

Posted by: buckbuck11 | June 30, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Has anyone checked to see if Kagan filed her taxes?

Posted by: FLvet | June 30, 2010 9:11 AM

@FLvet:

I am all but 100% certain that someone--very likely multiple someones--did so...probably several times.

Are you serious? IF Ms. Kagan had not filed her taxes, we would most surely have heard about it by now...and little else.

Which is to say: Wingnut Noise Machine would have caused such a story to drown out all of the REAL news for about a month.

'nuff said!

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 30, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, WaPo isn't better than this dismal dimmwitted political hackery.

Posted by: right_as_rain

___________________________________

I couldn't agree more.

Staff writers like Anne Kornblut and Amy Gardner, columnists like EJ Dionne, Eugene Robinson, Dana Milbank, and KAtrina vanden Heuvel, bloggers like Ezra Klein and Greg Sargent (not to mention a completely neutered ombudsman).....

...Absolute partisan political hacks all, with nary a brain cell or objective thought between them.

Posted by: etpietro | June 30, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

This is, without a doubt, the most incomprehensible drivel I have read this month.

Posted by: Becks1 | June 30, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

More right wing justification to allow greed and stealing for the irresponsible quisling rich.

Posted by: godwithfire55 | June 30, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

More right wing justification to allow greed and stealing for the irresponsible quisling rich.

Posted by: godwithfire55 | June 30, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Well, THAT's 30 seconds of my life I'll never get back.

Posted by: tonyplutonium | June 30, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

What does Elena Kagan think of sex-less sea creatures?

Posted by: tropicalfolk | June 30, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

All Kagan got from the democrats were softball questions.

Posted by: groovercg | June 30, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Oh boy! The conservatives have learned a new word. "Vapid." One conservative uses it and the whole conservative community uses it. What lemmings!

Posted by: jrussell1 | June 30, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone actually not know how Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, Kennedy, and Alito would vote on issues? I predicted how they would vote in every case. Elections have consequences.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | June 30, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

What, exactly, is the point of this mindless rant? Wapo is getting weaker and weaker when it comes to talent. I wouldn't let this guy edit a roll of TP much lass care of his opinion on issues that matter.

Posted by: dcperspective | June 30, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Why not replace Stephen Stromberg with a donkey's anus? Oh wait, what's the difference.

Posted by: exPostie | June 30, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

"Did anyone actually not know how Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, Kennedy, and Alito would vote on issues? I predicted how they would vote in every case. Elections have consequences."

Posted by: adrienne_najjar

Yes, I knew how they would probably vote and was very happy about it. They follow the Constitution. They are not opposed to first and second amendment rights. Good for them.

Posted by: groovercg | June 30, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

How does Paul the octopus predict ties? By eating bloggers?

Posted by: mystic01 | June 30, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Paul the Octopus is better looking. And with eight arms he has the potential to multi-task better than Kagan, who has four legs. Maybe if Paul the Octopus worked for Goldman Sachs, he could get himself appointed.

Posted by: fleeciewool | June 30, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

You are dumber than even your photo gives away.

Posted by: tuttlegroup | June 30, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

LOOK AT KAGAN AS RUTHIE 30 YEARS LATER.

Posted by: DANSHANTEAL1 | June 30, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

You could also replace Kagan with Chris Kattan from Saturday Night Live and no one would know the difference.

Posted by: etpietro | June 30, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse


Is the Post capable of hiring anyone with somehting worthwhile to say? What a smarmy, too-cute-by-half little diatribe.

To sum up: Kagan sidestepped stupid questions. The end.

Posted by: joebanks | June 30, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

These confirmations hearings are, as they have always been, as Mr. Stromberg says "a vapid farce". And as Ms. Rodriguez, in a companion editorial piece, points out that unless the candidate is incompetent, ignorant, wacky (Susan Angle),corrupt or "unqualified"in some other way, they should be confirmed.

With all the important problems facing the Senate, wasting time on this proceeding, when all the senators have already made up their minds on how they will vote (along party lines of course) should be an impeachable offense. We don't have time for these meaningless side shows.

Posted by: matthew2219 | June 30, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Stromberg you are a really big and I mean really big idiot. I thought you had some insight to offer so I read your column, hoping for some insight. I should of known it would be physco babbling when the word Octopus became part of the column..Thanks for nothing.

Posted by: Realistic5 | June 30, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Why not replace Stromberg with someone who doesnt wast my time?

Posted by: mini1071 | June 30, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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