How did Christine Blasey Ford make it back and forth to Hawaii?

One of the obstacles to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford testifying before the Senate yesterday was an inability to suffer the “confinement” of being in an airliner (see “Why won’t Claire McCaskill pick up Christine Blasey Ford in her Pilatus PC-12?”). She needed a few extra days to make the trip from California by car.

“Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford moved 3,000 miles to reinvent her life. It wasn’t far enough.” (Washington Post):

To many, Kavanaugh was a respected jurist. To her, he was the teenager who had attacked her when they were in high school.

Ford had already moved 3,000 miles away from the affluent Maryland suburbs where she says Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a house party — a charge he would emphatically deny. Suddenly, living in California didn’t seem far enough. Maybe another hemisphere would be. She went online to research other democracies where her family might settle, including New Zealand.

“She was like, ‘I can’t deal with this. If he becomes the nominee, then I’m moving to another country. I cannot live in this country if he’s in the Supreme Court,’ ” her husband said. “She wanted out.”

To avoid 4.5-hours of confinement from SFO to IAD, she had planned to spend five days in a car, which was why she wouldn’t be available to testify on Monday, but she was planning on the transpacific flight to New Zealand? And then to fly for far longer than 4.5 hours any time she needed to go somewhere from NZ?

How about when the University of Southern California student who could not handle commercial airline travel was looking for a place to get some practical training?

When she moved to Hawaii for a one-year internship to complete her PhD — taking a cheap studio apartment within board-carrying distance of Sans Souci Beach — the conversion seemed complete.

She rejected all of the programs within the 49 states to which she could travel by land and selected one on the most isolated population center on Planet Earth? Could it be that she traveled back and forth to Hawaii as a passenger on a freighter? Came back for Thanksgiving with the parents in Maryland via the Panama Canal?

[Separately, though I find it interesting that so many Americans think that they can know the “truth” about a 36-year-old event that occurred in private (maybe with some help from the same FBI team who investigated (and cleared) Tamerlan Tsarnaev), I was never a supporter of Judge Kavanaugh for any job. His August 15, 1998 letter filled with moral indignation about Bill Clinton “having sex with a 22-year-old intern” was a deal-killer for me right from the start. I never thought that investigating the sexual opportunities that were available to a president was a good use of taxpayer funds (it wouldn’t have made sense even as a political ploy; success in getting Bill Clinton impeached would have ensured a victory for Al Gore, running as an incumbent, in 2000). And moral indignation seems like hypocrisy to me when it comes from people who didn’t have those opportunities. I periodically see posts on Facebook from a guy who used his position as a professor to obtain sex from a variety of comely undergraduates. Now he is outraged about Trump. But if you’d given this guy a personal Boeing 757, billions in cash, and a vast Manhattan apartment, it is quite possible that he would have tapped into a much larger array of women than Donald Trump ever did. Anyone other than a movie star or sports hero who criticizes Bill Clinton is pretty much in the same category as this Facebook blowhard. Of the people who were mentioned as possible nominess, Amy Coney Barrett is my personal favorite (see “Amy Coney Barrett nomination would stop working parents from demanding more help?“), though, since I’m not a senator, I haven’t educated myself on her record as a judge.]

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Harvey in Rehab

Happy Halloween! What are the two things that scare Americans more than anything else? How about “opera” and “Harvey Weinstein”?

What if we were to combine the two?

Could this be a conventional Verdi-, Puccini-, or Mozart-style opera with a plot that unfolds chronologically? Plainly not: the allegations about Harvey came out during one week but they covered a period of 30 years (Washington Post).

Unlike Trump: the Opera, therefore, this should be a non-narrative work along the lines of Philip Glass’s Einstein on the Beach. From Wikipedia:

The opera eschews traditional narrative in favor of a formalist approach based on structured spaces laid out by [Robert] Wilson in a series of storyboards. … It is Glass’s first and longest opera score, taking approximately five hours in full performance without intermission; given the length, the audience is permitted to enter and leave as desired.

in the absence of a storyline attached to his image. While they did incorporate symbols from Einstein’s life within the opera’s scenery, characters, and music, they intentionally chose not to give the opera a specific plot. This is in accord with Wilson’s formalist approach, which he asserts creates more truth on stage than naturalist theater

How about an opera titled Harvey in Rehab? The stage will be broken up into three spaces:

  • Center: Harvey in a group therapy session at a clinic for sex addicts.
  • Stage left: Hotel room into which actresses come and go. At random intervals an assistant comes in to give an actress a bale of cash.
  • Stage right: Domestic realm. Wife played by actress 24 years younger than actor playing Harvey sits in front of a 10-year alimony entitlement countdown clock. Two young children run around chased by three nannies.

A chorus of lawyers in pinstripe suits occupies a space suspended above the stage. Harvey wanders among the spaces in a bathrobe while the lawyers move their heads so as to track him carefully. Lawyers lower vacuum hoses at unpredictable times to pull cash out of Harvey’s pockets or from some of the cash bales that actresses are trying to carry out.

Teenage children from Marriage #1 sometimes enter the domestic realm from stage right, wait for Harvey to appear in that realm, silently remove cash from his bathrobe pockets, and depart. Every 30 minutes, the wife from Marriage #1 comes in with an attorney singing a demand for cash while the toddlers from Marriage #2 sing “Who is this lady and how does she know our dad?”

Ending: Young wife and various actresses simultaneously pull lawyers down from the heavens. They all rush at Harvey who attempts to flee to a waiting Gulfstream on a runway reading “KSMO” rolled out in front of the stage. As Harvey attempts to depart in the Gulfstream, however, a mob of angry Santa Monicans attack the runway with scissors. Harvey exits the Gulfstream, stumbles on the airstairs, and drops his two suitcases. They open upon hitting the ground, releasing a cloud of cash that obscures all of the players. The curtain falls.

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