The Middle-Aged Genius’s Guide to Almost Everything 21 – Kavaraw
October 15, 2018
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: There’s also the fact of the statistical probability. There is a precedence set. When people say, “Believe women,” that is the media and communications part of it, the advertising of it, which has the underlying fact that there is a very high statistical probability of a woman coming forward being a real accusation with a strong evidentiary basis.
Rick Rosner: In the group of all women who come forward, there are patterns of fact. They increase or decrease the likelihood that they are telling the truth. In the case of Dr. Ford, there are all sorts of things that increase the probability that she is telling the truth.
One, she talks about it with her therapist in 2012. She talks about it again with another therapist in 2013. She is a smart and highly educated woman who is reluctant to come forward, except she comes forward, initially, in 2018 when Kavanaugh is on the shortlist.
She contacted the congressperson saying there is one person who should not be on the Supreme Court based on what he did to me. But she wants to remain anonymous. It is only due to some circumstances that aren’t clear to me, but involve being stalked by the press that she is outed by the press and reluctantly agrees to testify.
When she testifies, she answers like 100 questions and answers them all forthrightly. There is little that weighs against her telling the truth and much that weighs for her telling the truth against the average statistical probability that the number of women who come forward is telling the truth.
The Right tried to disqualify her by saying that Kavanaugh’s mom was a judge that foreclosed on the house. But that was almost instantaneously debunked. Kavanaugh’s mom was a judge in a foreclosure proceeding but she is the judge who dismissed the case at the bank’s request when the Ford’s got straight with the bank and Ford’s parents still live in the house.
That was conservative bullshit that tried to disqualify Ford. There was a bunch of stuff that says Ford is telling the truth. There is a pattern of fact that says that Kavanaugh is lying his ass off.
Including that he dodged something like 60 questions or 80 questions while in that hearing, he said a bunch of stuff that can immediately be proven to be false, mostly little stuff.
Like what some things mean, such as the Devil’s Triangle, we went over this stuff. It is hard to tell whether somebody is lying or telling the truth from a single statement. There is an article on 538.com right now on how even people who are supposedly skilled at truthtelling to tell whether someone is lying or not.
They only average about 54% accuracy, not much better than a coin toss. The way to tell whether someone is telling the truth or not is to build patterns of fact and question them extensively and to look for corroborating evidence.
With Ford versus Kavanaugh, you already have a big fact pattern that weighs in favor of Ford and weighs against Kavanaugh. Kavanaugh started the hearing by yelling and crying about being a wronged man, innocent man, and being smeared.
Just from his demeanor, you can’t tell whether he is telling the truth or not.
Jacobsen: That’s the thing. It is an argument ad misericordiam. It doesn’t support the case or disprove the case.
Rosner: Yes, but he was evasive and didn’t answer several questions, I forget the Latin phrase. But someone told me, if they like about small things, then you don’t have to trust them about anything.
If someone is consistently truthful, then that person is more likely to be truthful immediately than the person who has been caught out in lies and evasions, but it is all patterns of fact. You need a significant amount of information, which should hang together if you’re lucky.
Most of the time, you can accumulate enough information to tell if someone is telling the truth or not. We can look at the Senate. it agreed to open the investigation for another week to talk to some more people.
We can hope that this will provide some more information about what happened and who is telling the truth between Kavanaugh and his accusers.
Jacobsen: Let’s take the opposite view, why would the woman lie?
Rosner: It is a good probabilistic argument. She is a smart woman. She knows what happens to people who make these charges. She is not doing herself any favors by coming out.
It is about patterns of fact. When you look at Cosby’s accusers, there were around 70 of them now. Many of them or most of them are out of the entertainment business. They are in their 60s, 70s, and 80s.
At one point, they tried to be hot young actresses. But now, what they alleged happened, happened 30 or 40 years ago in some cases, they have been accused by supporters of doing it for the fame and the money.
But you look at them, most of them are not in a position to benefit or think that they can benefit by coming out with accusations. I don’t know how many of them have been shopping books around about their experience with Cosby.
But I would guess the majority of them are not. Nobody is trying to to get any acting work in entertainment. That was over 20 years ago. All that adds to the pattern of fact! That they are more likely, to tell the truth, because they are not some young, hot actress who is, maybe, deluded enough to think that coming out against somebody will get her someplace, professionally.
So, yes, the downside is that it has been well-established over the past few years that it is hellacious when you come out against somebody. It means that when you take the group of people who came out against Cosby, and if you take these Kavanaugh accusers; they belong to a subset of people who are aware of the downside and have less of an upside for making a false accusation.
It all weighs, yes, in their favor. To get back to Kavanaugh and lying, the way for him to have played it, according to a gazillion people. The way for him to have played it. I am assuming Ford is telling the truth.
The way for him to have played it, “I was in high school and way too drunk. I did some stuff that I regret. If I caused someone 30 years of pain via this low-level sexual horseplay,” as he did not get that far and the woman thought that she might die, “for the next 35 years, I tried to make up for what I’ve done by living a good life.”
Instead, he does a blanket denial. That’s just entitled and dumb. He thinks he can get away with it. He lied about everything. I said sexual stuff in high school. I came up with the senior men’s t-shirt that had an acrostic that spelled out “sex.”
I was deeply a virgin.
Rosner: Kavanaugh tried to say he was a virgin for many years afterward. Similarly, I was a virgin. But I was deeply interested in sex. He could have said, instead of lying about what these sexual things mean, that he was deeply a virgin and deeply interested in not being a virgin anymore.
So, he snuck these things into his yearbook caption. He says that all these things that have filthy sexual meanings do not have sexual meanings. All this stuff is disproven. It establishes him as a liar and as a guy who is not just a liar but also a guy who thinks he is entitled to do whatever he wants to do – and get away with stuff.
None of that stuff is what you want in a Supreme Court justice. You can talk about Clarence Thomas who is a deeply angry guy. A guy who seems to have been stewing in his own anger for the last 20 years. You know about him?
Jacobsen: He is African-American and the most conservative on the bench.
Rosner: You are allowed to have your opinions. But he is a guy that goes years without asking questions.
Jacobsen: [Laughing] what?
Rosner: He writes very few briefs. He just sits there. He just seems like a deeply pissed off guy.
Rosner: He is kind of useless. This is the last guy who got on the court after being embroiled in a sexual harassment situation, compare him to Scalia. A guy I didn’t like because he was super conservative.
But Scalia was joyful and active, and friends with Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who is a major liberal. He was collegial. That’s what you want, at least in my view of the court. A bunch of people who have their own deeply held opinions and can bounce their ideas off each other and can appreciate each other and can interact extensively to discuss and work through these issues.
I don’t think Scalia or Ginsburg changed each other’s minds about their stances on stuff. But, I think, their exchange deepened and enriched their views and understandings of issues. Then you have Thomas over here sulking and then Kavanaugh; this deeply entitled guy.
If he wasn’t angry before, he will be angry now that he is on the court. He was not known as a neutral jurist. He was a hit man for the Bush II White House. He worked for Ken Starr trying to impeach Clinton for sexual offenses and then changes his mind once it is Republicans on the line.
He was the one picked out of 200 justices. Out of 200 justices given to Trump by the Federalist Society as good conservative choices, he’s the one that said sitting presidents can’t be indicted for anything.
Trump picked him as the get out of jail free card. He is an angry aggrieved guy. Even if he didn’t happen to commit assault, even if you want to downplay the assaults with the most recent one coming forward is 1998 – not sure if that one is as well substantiated as the ones in the early to mid-80s, to say, “He is a good an since that.”
He is still bad for the court as he does not have a judicial temperament. Do not trust guys who had thick necks in high school.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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