Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Turnabout is fairplay--and good for us

Mona Charen has a nice piece on how unfair the charge of racism against Judge Sotomayor is and yet that it is only what the Democrats have done time and again to Republicans.  She focuses on the case of Judge Pickering from Mississippi.  The argument she makes and which I think has some merit is that this kind of turnabout, though it is unfair to the individuals involved, may be necessary to bring the practice to an end.  Unless the side that is victimized by an unfair standard returns the favor when the opportunity presents itself the advantage may lie with the least scruppulous side.  In a sense there is a duty to retaliate in kind.  This appears to be what happened with the special prosecutor law, the inequity of which suddenly became clear to Democrats after one was sicked on one of thier own--Bill Clinton. This may be a feature of systems that are inherently "political" in the sense that there is no neutral arbiter between the parties that has the power to enfoce rules.  The parties must enforce the rules themselves.  Enforcing them means being willing to subject them to the same injustices that the other side subjects you to.

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