The Corner

With Only Slight Exaggeration: It’s Go-Time

This is it. Back in June I wrote, “In Washington, conservatives and liberals are quietly loading up on drinking water, D batteries and extra ammo, in preparation for the coming battle over judges. Ralph Neas himself has been seen by the campfire carving notches into the stock of his rifle, muttering, ‘Pain don’t hurt.’ No one knows when the fight’s coming, but everyone knows it is.”

Ever since, my prognostications seemed wrong. Roberts virtually sailed through. Miers didn’t cause a split between right and left but between right and right. But now, this is the guy. Cokie Roberts said a senior Demcratic Senator has already denounced Alito as a “rightwing whacko” or words to that effect. Nina Totenberg called him “filibuster bait.” Even now, federalist society and Naral types are running around town ducking their heads into barber shops and shoe shine parlors, shouting “it’s on! It’s on!” Those inside throw down their newspapers, haircuts unfinished, and race to the law libraries.

It reminds me of one of those scenes from “Any Which Way You Can” or “Caddyshack” where the buzz spreads that the big fight or the big match is on.

The seventh seal has been broken, the goat entrails point toward gotterdamerung, it’s on.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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