Morning Report: Hurricane Florence damage estimates 9/17/18

Vital Statistics:

Last Change
S&P futures 2908.5 -2.9
Eurostoxx index 377.97 0.1
Oil (WTI) 69.63 0.64
10 year government bond yield 3.01%
30 year fixed rate mortgage 4.68%

Stocks are flat on no real news. Bonds and MBS are down.

We should have a quiet week ahead with not much in the way of economic data and no Fed-speak. Bonds have been selling off ahead of the FOMC meeting next week. The Fed Funds futures continue to bump up the chance of a December hike, with the odds now over 80%.

While not market moving, we will get some housing data with builder sentiment tomorrow, housing starts on Wednesday, and existing home sales on Thursday.

Chinese stocks are trading at a 4 year low, partially driven by threats of a trade war. Declining stock markets typically put pressure on real estate prices (asset classes generally correlate on the downside), and China has a bubble on its hands. This has the potential to spill over to the US, at least in the higher priced West Coast markets, which should see an exit of Chinese speculative money. Separately, China is considering declining further trade talks.

Trade talks should continue on NAFTA this week. The biggest effect of NAFTA talks will be on housing costs, particularly lumber prices. Base metals have been weak on trade issues, which should dampen the inflation indices a bit.

Hurricane Florence didn’t pack the punch that people expected, but the flooding has been probably worse. CoreLogic estimates that the insured flood costs will be between 3 and 5 billion. For servicers, this will suck up some cash, as delinquencies will invariably spike and we will be heading into the holiday forbearance period just as these loans go 90 days down. Nonbank servicers should expect to see a spike in advance activity to go along with the normal seasonal spike.

Manufacturing growth moderated in September, according to the Empire State Manufacturing Survey. New Orders and employment were pretty much the same.

Realtor.com lists the top 10 suburbs in the US. Most are pretty pricey with respect to incomes, with median price / median income ratios ranging from 3.5x to 7.4x. To put that number in perspective, up until the late 90s, the median home price to median income ratio averaged about 3.2 – 3.6. It peaked at 4.8 in 2006. While median home price to median income ratios are an imperfect measure (since they ignore the effects of interest rates on affordability) they are still a relevant measure of how overpriced an area can be.

Retailers are struggling to hire temps heading into the holiday season. Some decided to start hiring this summer in order to beat the expected shortages, while others are offering higher pay and vacation time. Is the just-in-time employment model about to exhibit its weakness?

Goldman is forecasting growth to slow to 2.6% in 2019 and 1.6% in 2020. Many are now calling for a recession in 2020. The catalyst will be higher interest rates and end of the Trump tax cut “sugar high.” Perhaps the big investment in inventory build we are currently seeing will be the catalyst. Regardless, we don’t seem to have any asset bubbles in the US so we probably aren’t going to be looking at any sort of credit crunch. Overseas, there are issues (Canada, Scandinavia, Australia, China).

69 Responses

  1. Brent, I don’t recall ever seeing as many “Help Wanted” signs at retail establishments. The Amazon negative effect on local business and the Big Box negative effect on small retail are real, but apparently not necessarily life threatening.

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  2. So, should Amy Coney Barrett be warming up in the bullpen?

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    • If you’re her, what’s your incentive to accept a nomination, assuming Kavanaugh is dropped, withdraws or is voted down? Why would she expect not to receive a vague allegation of an offense some years in the past? For example, someone claiming they heard her say “nigger”?

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      • well, there are only 9 of these jobs out there.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Concur. If anyone gives this up for accusations without evidence or corroboration they are asking to have everything scuttled the same way. There will be *someone* other there willing to come forward with exaggerated or fabricated accusations. Either with incentives from the opposition party or just for the attention and their 15 minutes.

        http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/09/17/who-is-christine-blasey-ford-professor-who-accused-brett-kavanaugh-sexual-misconduct.html

        He said he remembered his wife specifically using Kavanaugh’s name. She said during the session, Russell Ford recalled, she was scared he would one day be nominated to the Supreme Court.

        Uh-huh.

        But the other question is how far back are we going to go? I wouldn’t be surprised if a drunken 17 year old Kavanaugh did something “sexual assaulty” 30 years ago. May have been a time for reflection when he sobered up, if it happened. There really needs to be a statute of limitations on some of this stuff (of course, I didn’t think Bill Clinton should have been investigated for Whitewater as a sitting president, but what do I know?)

        I think “mining for skeletons” should mostly be limited to at least legal-adult age.

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        • If he was doing this stuff at 17, wouldn’t you think there would be more incidents later on in life?

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        • They’ll be more broads.

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        • “If he was doing this stuff at 17”

          If he did it once in a particular context we have very few details on (and, if he did it, he ain’t going to be the one to share them for insight) then not necessarily. Young men full of alcohol and hormones can make all sorts of bad decisions. Some make a habit of it but not all. IF he did something, there’s a possibility he woke up the next morning worried about how it might affect his chances of being a Supreme Court Judge 30 years on . . . well, maybe not that. But regret. Concern that things got out of hand.

          Or the details are being exaggerated, and something that in fact much more “roughhousing” for Kav-and-friend was more “attempted rape” to the woman, and he just never happened to do it again in such a way that somebody would want to come forward.

          But there’s still the question: are you who you were 30 years ago. Especially if you were 17 30 years ago? What if he lashed out and seriously hurt somebody when he was in eighth grade? Sure, he never did it again but . . . he broke that kid’s wrist!

          I realize every attempt must and will be made now to keep a justice off the court if being appointed by the opposition party. Just a little concerned that “demanding perfection for your entire life”–to the point where you have to be so perfect nobody would dare accuse you of ever having done anything wrong–is not leading to a good place.

          Anyway, I definitely wouldn’t want that kind of position.

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        • @gbowden41: “They’ll be more broads.”

          With more or less evidence? Or no evidence, just accusations?

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        • There is no evidence now, nor is any needed.

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        • There is no evidence now. And generally, no, evidence isn’t need but their needs to be more corroboration, I would think. It certainly isn’t a slam dunk, and some people are already assuming he’s going to get the nod, arguing that it means the GOP is explicitly pro-rape and that everybody should call the GOP the pro-Rape party. I get the feeling some of those folks would rather he get appointed, so they could use the word “rape” a lot more in their daily speech.

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      • jnc:

        David French had a reasonable take:

        I disagree, primarily because he treats it as an allegation to be seriously considered rather than dismissed out of hand as the politically inspired smear job that it obviously is.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I feel like there should be a kind of “speak now for forever hold your peace” thing on some of this stuff. I don’t see how you do it, but the whole “October surprise” last-minute BS should be broadly treated is cynically political and manipulative in all quarters.

          That being said, they’d be foolish if they didn’t treat this particular attack seriously and with sympathy in the current climate.

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        • KW:

          …but the whole “October surprise” last-minute BS should be broadly treated is cynically political and manipulative in all quarters.

          Exactly.

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        • “I disagree, primarily because he treats it as an allegation to be seriously considered rather than dismissed out of hand as the politically inspired smear job that it obviously is.”

          Now that you have an actual person making the claim and not just an anonymous letter, it is something that has to be seriously considered.

          Liked by 1 person

        • jnc:

          Now that you have an actual person making the claim and not just an anonymous letter, it is something that has to be seriously considered.

          Why? I think the brazenly cynical and partisan manner in which the accusation was raised and made public makes it less worthy of taking seriously regardless of whether or not it is true. We should not allow these bullshit tactics to have any success whatsoever.

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        • “regardless of whether or not it is true.”

          By categorically denying everything, Kavanaugh has now also made it about his veracity today, not just his behavior in high school.

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        • jnc:

          By categorically denying everything, Kavanaugh has now also made it about his veracity today…

          And if he didn’t deny it, then we’d have to take it seriously because he’s not denying it. You are just allowing the tactic of placing him in a catch-22 circumstance to work. I refuse to play along.

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        • It’s not a Catch-22 situation. The person came forward with an accusation, which is either true or false. In response, he either told the truth when he categorically denied it or he lied.

          If she’s lying, then it’s exactly the sort of smear job which you are alluding to and the blow back will be significant.

          If he’s lying, then he shouldn’t be confirmed to the Supreme Court. The country can do better.

          To go back to the original point, once you have a person willing to go on the record who isn’t obviously a nutcase, you have to take it seriously. It’s not the same as an anonymous letter.

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        • jnc:

          It’s not a Catch-22 situation.

          Of course it is. You claim that Kananaugh “made it about his veracity” by categorically denying it, as if there were another path he could have taken that would not have led you to take it seriously. But obviously you were going to take it seriously regardless of what he said.

          The person came forward with an accusation…

          No, she didn’t. Feinstein came forward with the accusation, explicitly saying that the woman did not want to come forward herself. Only then did the woman do so.

          To go back to the original point, once you have a person willing to go on the record who isn’t obviously a nutcase, you have to take it seriously.

          And to go back to my original question…why?

          The woman could have come forward publicly with the accusation 35 years ago when it allegedly happened, or 17 years ago when he got hired by the White House, or 12 years ago when he got appointed to the Circuit court, or 6 years ago when she (weirdly) suddenly became concerned about him getting on SCOTUS, or even 3 months ago when he actually did get nominated to SCOTUS. But she didn’t. So if they weren’t serious enough for her to make public at all of those points in the past, why should we take the charges seriously now, at the very last second, just as we know the Dems are desperately searching for any way to prevent his appointment for political reasons? Why?

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        • “Feinstein came forward with the accusation”

          No, someone in her office leaked it to The Intercept.

          There are a lot of Democrats and progressives who are pretty unhappy with her currently for having sat on it so long.

          “Why?”

          I suppose it’s a variant on the (supposedly) Russian hacking of the DNC E-mails. I don’t really care about how truthful information gets out there. More often than not, it’s going to be agenda driven. What matters is whether or not it’s true.

          Or maybe a better way to put it is that it’s certainly possible that the Democrats are acting in bad faith and the accuser is telling the truth. I believe the public interest is served by having them both testify rather than proceeding with the confirmation vote without doing so first.

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        • jnc:

          No, someone in her office leaked it to The Intercept.

          I thought Feinstein referred it to the FBI, making the fact public. But whatever, it wasn’t the woman who came forward until after the fact.

          There are a lot of Democrats and progressives who are pretty unhappy with her currently for having sat on it so long.

          I know, but they shouldn’t be. The eleventh hour release is far more likely to have the desired impact than it would have had 3 months ago.

          Or maybe a better way to put it is that it’s certainly possible that the Democrats are acting in bad faith and the accuser is telling the truth.

          Yes, although the former is a dead on certainty, not just a possibility.

          I believe the public interest is served by having them both testify rather than proceeding with the confirmation vote without doing so first.

          I think it is just enabling these kinds of last minute smear tactics, and I think it is much to the detriment of the public interest to enable them. Plus, I think as a society we should encourage people to report instances of sexual assault immediately, when the ability to substantiate and punish them is highest. Keeping them secret for decades only to break them out when convenient as a political weapon ought to be highly discouraged, not rewarded.

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        • “Keeping them secret for decades only to break them out when convenient as a political weapon ought to be highly discouraged, not rewarded.”

          I really don’t think that was Ford’s thought process back in the 1980s when she was 15.

          I do think her comments to her therapist about being triggered in 2012 by the thought that Kavanaugh could be on the Supreme Court one day are highly relevant though.

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        • jnc:

          I really don’t think that was Ford’s thought process back in the 1980s when she was 15.

          She hasn’t been 15 for the last 35 years. And she was 50 when she made the decision to air them.

          I don’t think this was engineered by Feinstein. I think she’s reacting to events.

          I don’t think Feinstein engineered the writing of the letter, but the chances that she didn’t engineer the way in which it became public is….close to zero, to say the least.

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        • Relatedly, I probably give this more credibility than you do because if it was really just 100% a tactic then it would have been used on Gorsuch as well.

          I don’t think this was engineered by Feinstein. I think she’s reacting to events.

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        • The WSJ is dead on right in its editorial today (emphasis added):

          The woman accusing Brett Kavanaugh of a drunken assault when both were teenagers has now come forward publicly, and on Monday it caused Republicans to delay a confirmation vote and schedule another public hearing. Yet there is no way to confirm her story after 36 years, and to let it stop Mr. Kavanaugh’s confirmation would ratify what has all the earmarks of a calculated political ambush.

          This is not to say Christine Blasey Ford isn’t sincere in what she remembers. In an interview published in the Washington Post on Sunday, Ms. Ford offered a few more details of the story she told anonymously starting in July. She says she was 15 when Mr. Kavanaugh, who would have been 17, and a male friend pushed her into a bedroom at a drinking party, held her down, and pawed her until the male friend jumped on them both and she escaped to a bathroom until the two boys left the room.

          Mr. Kavanaugh denies all this “categorically and unequivocally,” and there is simply no way to prove it. The only witness to the event is Mr. Kavanaugh’s high school male friend, Mark Judge, who also says he recalls no such event. Ms. Ford concedes she told no one about it—not even a high school girl friend or family member—until 2012 when she told the story as part of couples therapy with her husband.

          The vagaries of memory are well known, all the more so when they emerge in the cauldron of a therapy session to rescue a marriage. Experts know that human beings can come to believe firmly over the years that something happened when it never did or is based on partial truth. Mistaken identity is also possible.

          The Post reports that the therapist’s notes from 2012 say there were four male assailants, but Ms. Ford says that was a mistake. Ms. Ford also can’t recall in whose home the alleged assault took place, how she got there, or how she got home that evening.

          This is simply too distant and uncorroborated a story to warrant a new hearing or to delay a vote. We’ve heard from all three principals, and there are no other witnesses to call. Democrats will use Monday’s hearing as a political spectacle to coax Mr. Kavanaugh into looking defensive or angry, and to portray Republicans as anti-women. Odds are it will be a circus.

          The timing and details of how Ms. Ford came forward, and how her name was coaxed into public view, should also raise red flags about the partisan motives at play. The Post says Ms. Ford contacted the paper via a tip line in July but wanted to remain anonymous. She then brought her story to a Democratic official while still hoping to stay anonymous.

          Yet she also then retained a lawyer, Debra Katz, who has a history of Democratic activism and spoke in public defense of Bill Clinton against the accusations by Paula Jones. Ms. Katz urged Ms. Ford to take a polygraph test. The Post says she passed the polygraph, though a polygraph merely shows that she believes the story she is telling.

          The more relevant question is why go to such lengths if Ms. Ford really wanted her name to stay a secret? Even this weekend she could have chosen to remain anonymous. These are the actions of someone who was prepared to go public from the beginning if she had to.

          The role of Senator Dianne Feinstein is also highly irregular and transparently political. The ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee knew about Ms. Ford’s accusations in late July or early August yet kept quiet. If she took it seriously, she had multiple opportunities to ask Judge Kavanaugh or have committee staff interview the principals. But in that event the details would have been vetted and Senators would have had time to assess their credibility.

          Instead Ms. Feinstein waited until the day before a committee markup on the nomination to release a statement that she had “information” about the accusation and had sent it to the FBI. Her statement was a political stunt.

          She was seeking to insulate herself from liberal charges that she sat on the letter. Or—and this seems increasingly likely given the course of events—Senator Feinstein was holding the story to spring at the last minute in the hope that events would play out as they have. Surely she knew that once word of the accusation was public, the press would pursue the story and Ms. Ford would be identified by name one way or another.

          Democrats waited until Ms. Ford went public to make public statements. But clearly some were feeding the names of Ms. Ford and her lawyer to the press, and now they are piling on what they hope will be an election-eve #MeToo conflagration.

          “Senator [and Judiciary Chairman] Grassley must postpone the vote until, at a very minimum, these serious and credible allegations are thoroughly investigated,” declared Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday. “For too long, when women have made serious allegations of abuse, they have been ignored. That cannot happen in this case.”

          His obvious political goal is to delay the confirmation vote past the election, fan the #MeToo political furies until then, and hope that at least two GOP Senators wilt under political pressure. If Republican Senators Jeff Flake and Bob Corker think a hearing will satisfy Mr. Schumer, they are right to retire from politics.

          GOP Senators should understand that the political cost of defeating Mr. Kavanaugh will likely include the loss of the Senate. Democrats are already motivated to vote against Donald Trump, and if Republicans panic now their own voters will rightly be furious. They would be letting Democrats get away with the same dirty trick they tried and failed to pull off against Clarence Thomas.

          It would also be a serious injustice to a man who has by all accounts other than Ms. Ford’s led a life of respect for women and the law. Every #MeToo miscreant is a repeat offender. The accusation against Mr. Kavanaugh is behavior manifested nowhere else in his life.

          No one, including Donald Trump, needs to attack Ms. Ford. She believes what she believes. This is not he said-she said. This is a case of an alleged teenage encounter, partially recalled 30 years later without corroboration, and brought forward to ruin Mr. Kavanaugh’s reputation for partisan purposes.

          Letting an accusation that is this old, this unsubstantiated and this procedurally irregular defeat Mr. Kavanaugh would also mean weaponizing every sexual assault allegation no matter the evidence. It will tarnish the #MeToo cause with the smear of partisanship, and it will unleash even greater polarizing furies.

          https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-metoo-kavanaugh-ambush-1537197395

          Any Republican who is calling for these hearings is simply enabling the Dems in their sleazy games.

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      • “I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” said Ford, now a 51-year-old research psychologist in northern California. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.”

        That just seems like a weird thing to say. “I thought he might inadvertently kill me. At best it’s rewriting of the memory, at worst (and more likely) it’s intentionally injecting “I thought he might kill me” into the accusation, to add gravitas and seriousness. The “inadvertently” strikes me as off.

        At least the investigation seems somewhat manageable. If there were only four boys there, who were the other two? Let’s hear from them. In fact, investigators should interview everyone else at the party.

        The party was thirty-frickin’ years ago and it sounds like everybody was drunk. Whether exculpatory or not, their testimony is, in fact, almost completely worthless.

        Ultimately, I think French is right that there’s no there there.

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        • I also want to hear from the therapist about the worry in 2012 that Kavanaugh might one day be a Supreme Court nominee as the trauma trigger.

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  3. “Overseas, there are issues (Canada, Scandinavia, Australia, China).”

    Canada is overseas? 🙂

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    • Well, if you go far enough south, and then start heading north through Australia, China, Russia, and the Arctic, you will have to cross the Arctic Ocean at some point to get to Canada. . .

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  4. I find myself agreeing with Charles Cooke:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/whats-in-it-for-republicans/

    What’s “in it for Republicans?” You mean other than refusing to establish a precedent by which any nominee for anything can be vetoed by vague, anonymous, half-peddled, whisper-driven accusations? If Kavanaugh withdraws now, while the charge against him remains glued to the shadows, he ensures that nobody in politics will ever again need to flesh out their accusations, and all but guarantees that the minority party in the Senate will be able to kill any figure at any time on the basis of nothing more than innuendo.

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  5. Sounds like DiFi is trying to run out the clock…

    “The standard procedure for updates to any nominee’s background investigation file is to conduct separate follow-up calls with relevant parties. In this case, that would entail phone calls with at least Judge Kavanaugh and Dr. Ford. Consistent with that practice, I asked Senator Feinstein’s office yesterday to join me in scheduling these follow-ups. Thus far, they have refused. But as a necessary step in evaluating these claims, I’ll continue working to set them up.

    https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/press/rep/releases/grassley-statement-on-the-supreme-court-nomination

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    • Then allow Kavanaugh to testify tomorrow and hold the vote. Let the chips fall where they may, if he loses, he loses. Would be a good stimulus for the Republican base, frankly.

      Liked by 1 person

      • McWing:

        Then allow Kavanaugh to testify tomorrow and hold the vote.

        Agreed. The R’s have the power to prevent this bullshit from going on, and they should use it. If they lose Collins or Flake or others, and as a result Kavanaugh goes down, then let them run on it.

        Liked by 1 person

        • There’s no reason why both Kavanaugh and Ford shouldn’t be able to testify this month. The substance is pretty straight foward and there’s only one incident to discuss.

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        • jnc:

          There’s no reason why both Kavanaugh and Ford shouldn’t be able to testify this month. The substance is pretty straight foward and there’s only one incident to discuss.

          And what possible edification would come from such testimony? Let’s assume that she comes off as not a nut job and perfectly normal, sincere and believable. And he continues to vociferously and categorically deny that it ever happened. What then?

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        • tell me again why the Pence rule isn’t the way to go through life.

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        • What’s the point now, don’t actually have to have any evidence you’ve been in the room with a dude. Seems to me the lesson is do what you want with broads and deny everything as you’ll be accused regardless. Fuck it, enjoy yourself.

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        • “What then?”

          Senators make a judgement call and vote. But they will have seriously addressed it rather than ignoring it.

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        • jnc:

          Senators make a judgement call and vote.

          They can do that now. You and I both know that the point of any public testimony about this will be entirely about the posture of the politicians, not any relevant information provided by the witnesses. The Dems will get a chance to virtue signal about sexual assault and smear Kavanaugh’s reputation with innuendo, and the R’s will have to choose between looking (and subsequently being portrayed) like bullies towards an alleged victim or just sitting back and letting Kavanaugh get smeared.

          But they will have seriously addressed it rather than ignoring it.

          I don’t think simply listening to two people tell diametrically opposed stories represents “seriously addressing it”. And I think it should be ignored precisely because of the way in which it came about. Again, we should not be enabling this kind of last second bullshit.

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        • Dumb question, but assuming no statute of limitations issues, would the facts we have on the ground be enough for a prosecutor to take this to trial?

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        • Brent, I think Kav was a minor and perhaps only subject to juvie court jurisdiction.

          We do not know what evidence could have been adduced in this case, anyway.

          If a juvie matter had been pursued, it would have probably ended with a no alcohol probation and a dressing down by a juvie court judge, as juvie matters only require preponderance of the evidence. And I am guessing some other attendees would have said Kav was drunk. Adding more hypothetical nonsense to this, the record would have been sealed, but the FBI vetting the first time he was appointed to the bench would have had access to it.

          Addendum: I was looking at this as if it had been reported the next morning, because that is what I took from your wording. But if you meant “could he be prosecuted now”, because he assaulted a minor then, he could be if he had been an adult, then. Assuming he had reached Maryland’s age of criminal responsibility the following is also true.

          No prosecutor would take the case without more than what we know here, even though she has passed a polygraph, and even if the prosecutor was pretty sure she was telling the truth. As Scott wrote, there would have to be substantially more evidence to make a case.

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        • I’m no prosecutor, but I don’t see how. She doesn’t even know where or when it allegedly happened. And apparently the first time she shared the event with anyone was 30 years after it allegedly happened. Hard to see how any criminal case could possibly be made.

          BTW, I read that Maryland doesn’t have any statute of limitations on crimes against minors.

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        • @scottc1: Again, we should not be enabling this kind of last second bullshit.

          Hear, hear. The correct response is: if you were serious about your smear campaign, you should have started when you had the information. Also, f*** off.

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        • “even though she has passed a polygraph”

          At best, polygraph proves she believes she’s not lying. Which is a low bar for evidence on something that happened 30 years ago.

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  6. Public hearings Monday! This is going to be FUCKING AWESOME!!

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    • I’m sure we are going to learn tons useful information.

      Liked by 1 person

      • We can only hope for pubic hairs on coke cans and references to Long Dong Silver.

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        • Also lost in all of the discussion of whether or not the allegations are true is the question of whether it should it even matter. Even if the incident happened and happened precisely as she claims, should such a single drunken incident at the age of 17 be a lifetime disqualifier for holding a high level government position? It isn’t obvious to me that it should be. If, for example, a sitting Senator can literally kill a woman (negligently albeit accidentally) and remain in the good graces of the Senate, continue to hold seats on Senate committees for the rest of his life, and be lionized as a great public servant by his colleagues upon his death, it isn’t clear to me why this alleged incident should disqualify Kavanaugh, even if it is completely true.

          As an aside, this seems like a good example of one of the “persuasion techniques” that Scott Adams spoke of with regard to Trump during the campaign when he raised the issue of building the wall along the Mexico border. By forcing a debate over how the wall could be financed, everyone was ignoring the more fundamental question of whether the wall should be built in the first place, implicitly accepting that it should be. The same is happening here. By forcing a debate over whether her allegations are true or not, the D’s have gotten everyone to ignore the more fundamental question of whether her allegations should matter in the first place.

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        • The charge has accomplished its goal, so it definetly will be used again (well, it will keep being used). The smart play by the Rebulicans, though it will end up being costly, is to destroy this woman’s credibility and character so as to dissuade future martyrs. If they don’t, the hits keep coming. If they do, dumb broads will get more pissy than they already are.

          On second thought, that’s a small price to pay.

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        • McWing;

          The smart play by the Rebulicans, though it will end up being costly, is to destroy this woman’s credibility and character so as to dissuade future martyrs.

          I think they should just ignore it and say sorry, the issue was not raised at the appropriate time and it is too late to bring it up now. On to the vote. There is no reason to have any interaction with the woman whatsoever. If Republicans fail to use the power they have to protect their interests from these last minute smear tactics of the left, then they don't deserve to have that power.

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        • I’m not sure they deserve the power, they prefer re-election and deferment to the executive branch.

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        • Trump being oddly un-Trumpian on the whole matter:

          “I think he’s on track, yeah. I think he’s very much on track,” he said. “If they delay it a little bit just to make sure everybody’s happy — they want to be happy. I can tell you, the Republican senators want to be 100 percent happy themselves. They’re doing it very, very professionally.”

          https://www.lifezette.com/2018/09/kavanaugh-goes-further-than-denial-his-statement-will-make-or-break-him/

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        • He’s doing what McConnell is telling him what Collins and Murkowski want. It’s a mistake.

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        • I was correct in assuming the age of criminal responsibility in Maryland was 18. Kavanaugh was 17 at the time of the alleged assault. Because I don’t believe any action should be taken against him based on juvie matters I have no basic problem with moving on. However – suppose she is telling the truth. Would he be justified in lying about it now? If he was falling down drunk there is a good chance he doesn’t recall the incident. If he knows he got blotto on occasion in HS but has no recollections of this would that not have been a safe response? It is of course possible for both to be telling the truth in that she knows the drunken 17 YO who assaulted her was called BK and he doesn’t think he ever did or would have done something like that.

          So I am just speculating about the hypothetical ethics and politics of Kavanaugh telling the truth if the truth does not put him in a good light, even though I think rational folks could not hold a juvie drunken assault against him.

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        • The only time I was ever blotto drunk was on a lost bet that I could drink 24 beers in some ridiculously short period of time. I was 19. I only recall the barfing on my shoes. I am certain there were no women involved but actually how can I be certain? There were at least two lost hours entirely. In fact, I have never been a drinker except for beer after softball or touch football and wine on Friday nights. So that bet itself was based on the limited knowledge that three beers didn’t seem to have an effect. I assume preppies drink more, like fraternity members, but there is some point early on where they have no judgment about capacity and lucidity. Most seem to outgrow that but some don’t.

          If Kavanaugh were still living in a bottle we would know about it.

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        • Mark:

          If he knows he got blotto on occasion in HS but has no recollections of this would that not have been a safe response?

          No chance. The charge, and especially the way it was made public, was designed to make it impossible for him to respond to in any “safe” way.

          I think rational folks could not hold a juvie drunken assault against him.

          Exactly the point of my question below. If even in the worst case scenario it shouldn’t matter to his nomination, then why require him to address it in the first place?

          Like

      • Because that’s what the senate hearings are always about. Tons of useful information, shared with our informed and knowledgable representatives. So that they can calmly make impartial and objective decisions.

        Like

  7. HOLY! MUTHERFUCKING! SHIT!

    Daughter of a Minister is a believer in what is ministered.

    WE’RE FUCKED!

    Like

  8. To quote Instapundit: I’ll believe we’re in an emergency when the people telling me we’re in an emergency start behaving as if we’re in an emergency.

    Like

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