fallacy time!

Ruth Marcus at the Washington Post tries to be evenhanded in the initial paragraphs of this op-ed before coming clean on what she really thinks of Justice Thomas. A noble enough effort, I guess, but why waste space on this silliness?

Thomas v. Hill is one of those questions destined to remain disputed — Did Al Gore actually win the presidency? Was the intelligence manipulated to mislead us into Iraq? The conundrum of Thomas-Hill is the continuing forcefulness of their conflicting assertions about what happened when he was a Reagan administration official and she a young lawyer working for him.

If Thomas did what Hill claims, how to understand his undimmed anger, his absolute denials, his willingness to pick the scab anew? If he didn’t, how to understand her motive for lying — and her summoning such unlikely details as pubic hairs on Coke cans?

This is your Gordian knot, Ms. Marcus? Allow me.

a) No.
b) Yes.
c) I refer you to Dotty P.:

If they whisper false of you
Never trouble to deny
If the words they say be true
Weep and storm and swear they lie.

This reminds of this one time in high school that an annoying boy, SM, spread a rumor about me. It wasn’t terribly malicious, I guess, but it seemed at the time like the worst thing that could be said, and what really killed me, what really made this unforgettable, was that it was TRUE. & there was no way he could have known!

I went rather nuts, wailing to the heavens, and the gods avenged me, in a way: a couple years later, a popular friend of mine, C., discovered that SM wanted into his clique. C. demanded, as the price of entry, that SM apologize to me for the humiliation and find some way to make it up to me. This put me in the rather awkward position of having to tell SM it was all forgiven; however, the humbling of SM did come accompanied by a mix tape he made for me which introduced me to Ben Folds Five, Bob Dylan, and Simon and Garfunkel. My affinity for his music endured, though the friendship we tried to strike up was pretty much DOA.

Through the grapevine (you know, Facebook), I found out that SM, hairline receding fast, got married within about a week of me. C., who I haven’t spoken to in months, is featured prominently in the pictures. I guess life will only get stranger as it goes on.

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