She wants what?

Good lord, how does this happen? Up at 7 a.m., make lunch for my kid, slurp coffee, post story on other site, pimp it out via social media, slurp more coffee, check schedule for today (haircut ‘n’ color, office hours), realize I have eight minutes to update my beloved little blog. Where I actually have some readers.

Sigh.

Well, I don’t think I need much more than eight minutes today, because what I really want to talk about is Mrs. Clarence Thomas, Ginni to her pals, and her — what’s the word? — gall. Unmitigated gall. Or maybe recklessness, calling Anita Hill at 7 a.m. on a Saturday to leave one of those passive-aggressive phone messages we’ve all gotten from time to time. A few things I find interesting about it:

1) The time stamp. You don’t call someone’s office at that hour expecting to get a human on the other end. She meant to leave a message. I guess she did.

2) Nineteen years later, she wants to “extend an olive branch,” she said in a confirming statement to the New York Times. The original story that went up last night said she wants to “get passed what happened,” later corrected to “past” without the (sic), so it’s possible it was the Times’ error, although I think not. Pointing this out is just mean, one of my infamous snarky comments, I hasten to add.

3) Although. She wants to “reach across the airwaves and the years?” What the hell does that mean?

4) TBogg may be on to something when he joked that “breakfastinis” were involved with this. I wouldn’t be surprised.

5) Her husband looks like he’s been living on a diet of church-basement casseroles for 20 years. Just sayin’.

6) The best single comment I’ve read on this is Scott Lemieux’s:

What’s perhaps most remarkable is that Ginni Thomas has been pickled for so long in the winger echo chamber that she seemed to take for granted that everyone, including the woman her husband treated inappropriately, would share her conviction that her husband was a victim subject to some kind of gross injustice.

Now you all add your own. My eight minutes is up. Have a great day, all.

Posted at 9:47 am in Current events |
 

78 responses to “She wants what?”

  1. susan said on October 20, 2010 at 9:54 am

    Well, I think Anita Hill said it best, as noted in the NYT piece linked above:

    In her 1998 book “Speaking Truth to Power,” Ms. Hill noted that she had been accused of harboring a romantic interest in Justice Thomas by his wife. “Virginia Thomas and I have never met,” Ms. Hill wrote. “And one can imagine that she is guided by her own romantic interest in her husband when she assumes that other women find him attractive as well.”

    Ha ha ha ha ha!

    Sheesh.

  2. Sammy said on October 20, 2010 at 10:00 am

    Mr. and Mrs. Thomas. The Cheneys. Others…. How do people sustain decades of paranoia? (Actually, I’m kinda happy I don’t know.)

  3. coozledad said on October 20, 2010 at 10:16 am

    I grew up in the milieu where this kind of behavior is unremarkable, but then again, so are the routine hair-pulling fights over Christmas dinner, or leaping onto coffins as they’re lowered into the grave. It’s a class thing.

  4. alex said on October 20, 2010 at 10:21 am

    Who put the pube in my pop, doo-wop?
    Who put the gin in my Ginni Ginni, ding-dong?

  5. velvet goldmine said on October 20, 2010 at 10:24 am

    Drunk-dialing was my first guess as well. Either that or one too many nights listening to Himself slurring about how his reputation would be spotless if that bitch hadn’t ruined him. I’d forgotten about his 2007 book; he obviously hasn’t let this one go either.

  6. Dorothy said on October 20, 2010 at 10:29 am

    I read your entry and ended up with a lopsided smirky grin on my face. And I was going to say no one does snark as well as you do, Nance, but then then I read some of the comments above mine and I think you’re in pretty good company!

  7. Peter said on October 20, 2010 at 10:50 am

    Oh boy, while I would love to yak on about Ginned Up Ginni and the constitutionally clueless Ms. Delaware, I need to vent about a story that the MSM is missing; namely, the US Rep candidate in Virginia who’s had sexually suggestive pictures posted on the web. As a voter, I need to know:

    1. Why aren’t these pictures in better resolution? As a male voter, I need to conduct a thorough investigation of the evidence.

    2. Why isn’t she running in my district?

    3. Is her name really Krystal Ball? Really?

    4. If this doesn’t get a Dave Barry guest column, what will?

  8. Sue said on October 20, 2010 at 10:59 am

    I apologize in advance for my sexist comment in these enlightened times:
    Clarence Thomas is obviously pussy-whipped, if he can’t control the missus any better than that. He harasses and dominates subordinates and then marries someone who, shall we say, doesn’t play the part of a good quiet wife.
    This whole thing says more about Clarence than either of the others.
    And, has the s***-storm started regarding Anita’s obvious attempt to embarrass this poor, poor woman who was just trying to make amends by demanding an apology? How dare she call campus security? Fox in three… two… one…

  9. Bob (not Greene) said on October 20, 2010 at 11:04 am

    I read that story about Ginni Thomas and I just think, “How do people this clueless get into positions of power?” The only thing I can come up with is that they have no shame. They simply are incapable of being embarrassed by their dumbass actions. The other thing that I can’t believe is that this woman is part of some right-wing group being funded by who-knows-who and her husband is on the goddamn Supreme Court — for life — making decisions that affect everyone. God help us.

  10. LAMary said on October 20, 2010 at 11:10 am

    In other classy supreme court news, Chief Justice Roberts says the other justices don’t have to attend the State of the Union address if they don’t want to. It seems Alito was cranky about people reading his lips last year when he said the president was lying. So he doesn’t have to go this year.

  11. Jill said on October 20, 2010 at 11:12 am

    My very first thought was that she must be writing a book or something and was desparate to get back into the media…no matter the cost!

  12. ROgirl said on October 20, 2010 at 11:16 am

    Why now? This has been festering under her skin all these years and it became too much to hold back any more, just a few weeks before the mid-term elections, a referendum for the president she called a tyrant?

  13. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 20, 2010 at 11:19 am

    Alito said “Not true, not true.” Which is a distinction worth making.

    The call, and leaving a message like that, was a serious lapse of judgment which only hurts her husband more. Obviously this is an outgrowth of too much obsessing over an unknowable, which makes people leave silly voice mail messages. Almost every week I end up having to listen to one or two, every one of which makes me think, but can’t say “What were they thinking?”

    To which the answer invariably is: they weren’t, or they wouldn’t have done it.

    (I should note most of the voice mails I’m angrily asked to hear are left not by my juveniles, but by parents and grandparents to the families of other juveniles. So it’s not a kid thing — they send each other mindlessly stupid text messages which they still (by which I mean, as of today) are amazed to learn don’t go away when they hit delete. You do know that, right?)

  14. Joan said on October 20, 2010 at 11:28 am

    From a Washington Post story on this (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/19/AR2010101907062.html?hpid=topnews)

    “But Lillian McEwen, a former Senate Judiciary Committee lawyer who said she dated Clarence Thomas from 1979 through the mid-1980s, told The Washington Post in an interview that Hill’s long-ago description of Thomas’s behavior resonated with her.

    “The Clarence I know was certainly capable not only of doing the things that Anita Hill said he did, but it would be totally consistent with the way he lived his personal life then,” said McEwen, who is writing her own memoir but has never before publicly discussed her relationship with Clarence Thomas.

    McEwen also told the Post she was not surprised that Virginia Thomas would leave Hill a message, even after all these years.

    “In his autobiography, Clarence described himself as a person incapable of doing what Anita Hill said he did,” McEwen said. “He is married to a woman who is loyal to him and religious in a way he would like to be. This combination of religiosity and loyalty and belief that he is really the kind of person who he describes in his book would just about compel her to do something like that.”

  15. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 11:37 am

    Were any of the charges brought up against Mr Thomas ever proven?
    Just saying.
    Pilot Joe.

  16. ROgirl said on October 20, 2010 at 11:55 am

    She made that call the morning that an article about her Tea Party activism appeared in the New York Times. Hmmmmmm. Coincidence or diversionary tactic?

  17. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    Anita Hill took and passed a polygraph test, Joe. Clarence Thomas refused to take one.

    I can tell you this much from personal experience. In 1989, I was selected by my then office (Seattle Regional office of the SEC) to be the EEO rep and traveled to San Diego for training in that. Our trainer was a black woman who had worked at the EEOC under Thomas and over the course of the three training days, she regaled us with a few stories of how stupid Thomas was. When he was nominated, and Hill became a target, I called her because I had her card and suggested that she speak up. She never called me back. Wonder why.

    And then there is this:

    http://moesmisadventures.blogspot.com/2010/05/collateral-damage.html

  18. LAMary said on October 20, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    MMJeff, true, Alito said “not true.” That guy Wilson said “Liar.”
    I hope Roberts explained that the justices didn’t have to go, but it would be the civilized thing to do.

  19. Jenflex said on October 20, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    Nancy, re: #2 on your snark list, the WaPo article left “passed” in there, with the sic.

  20. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Mo99,
    So whats your point? Were ANY charges PROVEN? Iam not a lawyer, are polygraphs allowable in court?
    Pilot Joe

  21. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 12:24 pm

    Joe, I’m sorry. You don’t get it.

    from the WaPo article:
    But Lillian McEwen, a former Senate Judiciary Committee lawyer who said she dated Clarence Thomas from 1979 through the mid-1980s, told The Washington Post in an interview that Hill’s long-ago description of Thomas’s behavior resonated with her.

    “The Clarence I know was certainly capable not only of doing the things that Anita Hill said he did, but it would be totally consistent with the way he lived his personal life then,” said McEwen, who is writing her own memoir but has never before publicly discussed her relationship with Clarence Thomas.

    McEwen also told the Post she was not surprised that Virginia Thomas would leave Hill a message, even after all these years.

    “In his autobiography, Clarence described himself as a person incapable of doing what Anita Hill said he did,” McEwen said. “He is married to a woman who is loyal to him and religious in a way he would like to be. This combination of religiosity and loyalty and belief that he is really the kind of person who he describes in his book would just about compel her to do something like that.”

  22. Catherine said on October 20, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    I wish it were a funny case of drunk dialing, but frankly I think Ginni got exactly what she wanted — exposure for herself (hello higher speaking fees) and her crackpot Tea Party affiliated organization. I’m probably starting to sound like Hillary with the vast right-wing conspiracy thing, but I don’t think this was a mistake at all, & I think Anita Hill or whoever leaked it played right into Ginni’s hands. It would not surprise me at all if the leaker turns out to have Tea Party sympathies. Paranoid? Maybe, but follow the money, folks. The only person who benefits financially from this is Ginni Thomas.

  23. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    Moe99,
    You are right I don’t get it. Why don’t you answer my question. In court was any charge proven?
    Pilot Joe

  24. nancy said on October 20, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Joe, Thomas wasn’t being charged with anything. It was a Senate hearing to determine his fitness to be given a lifetime job on the highest court in the land. Hill was subpoenaed to talk about what kind of boss he’d been when he was running the EEOC. So no, nothing was proven. And Thomas got the job. He WON. Which is what makes his wife’s two-decade-long grudge even weirder.

  25. coozledad said on October 20, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Wingers are never interested to find out what schlubs their placeholders are. But the Hague ought to be interested in Clarence. As the Bush family doormat in the court, his office was the nexus of the OLC approval of torture. Yoo worked out of his broom closet, where hitherto Clarence had only kept his stash of Ass Titans videotapes, soft drinks, and tubs of Safeway deli macaroni.
    http://www.acslaw.org/taxonomy/term/1021

  26. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Nancy,
    Why didn’t the people that accused Thomas apologize, 19yrs ago when nothing was proven? The things that were said were pretty bad.
    I’ll catch your answeres later, Mrs Pilot Joe and I are heading out the door for Disney World.
    I’ll check in from Orlando!!
    Cheers.
    Pilot Joe

  27. Sue said on October 20, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    Joe, it took David Brock about 7 years to admit he lied about Anita Hill in an attempt to protect Clarence Thomas. He’s sorry for what he did to Anita and Kaye Savage, among others. He got a best-selling book out of it before he got a conscience.
    Have fun in Disney World!

  28. Bitter Scribe said on October 20, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    This woman is married to a man who blamed affirmative action when he didn’t get any job offers out of law school! I think it’s safe to say that acknowledgment of reality is not a strong suit with either of them.

  29. 4dbirds said on October 20, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    I believed Anita. I still do. I was in the army, made a career of it, so I know about the behavior of some men in the workplace. Young women don’t know how good they have it now. I put up with shit, real shit and no Joe I probably couldn’t ever prove it since we didn’t carry cellphones then and those nonexistant cellphone didn’t have cameras.

    I’m also curious over the 20 year gap. Why isn’t Clarence’s wife over it? I bet because Clarence isn’t over it? That’s convinces me even more that he was that gross man.

  30. Scout said on October 20, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Nancy, you do more with 8 minutes than I can with a whole week.

    It is galling that wingers can turn even their most embarrassing indiscretions, (drunk dialing has my vote) into financial advantage by the compliant and sympathetic press. It’s a sorry state of affairs when something so tacky and classless creates more exposure for teabaggery as well as rewards like higher speaking fees for Grizzled Mamas.

    Oh, and just because something was never “proven” doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Just sayin’.

  31. beb said on October 20, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    The weird part is that in the news blurb I saw about Mrs Thomas’ phone call it was mentioned that the FBI had been called in. Why would anybody call in the FBI unless there was some underlying threat to the call. Or was it just to verify that Mrs. Thomas had indeed made the call and not some crank.

  32. Julie Robinson said on October 20, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    Any woman of a certain age has experienced sexual harassment in the workplace, in school, or even amongst friends and family. We. All. Have. Only in the last 20-25 years has it been corporate policy to prohibit it and teach about that prohibition. It took brave women like Anita Hill to make it a national conversation. Any man who says you don’t get it, ask a woman.

  33. nancy said on October 20, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    Beb, it was the latter. She held it for a week, wondering if it was a prankster, then asked campus police to investigate, and they were the ones who called the FBI, presumably reasoning that if anyone could verify a SCOTUS spouse’s voice and phone, it would be them.

  34. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    Thank you Julie. Anyone who has watched episodes of Mad Men knows the truth. And given that sexual harassment is the sort that leaves no fingerprints, it will always be a ‘he said, she said’ sort of thing.

    Anita Hill was subpoenaed, she didn’t volunteer to testify. She knew what would happen to her if she testified and yet she did. She spoke for all of us women who have been sexually harassed in the workplace (my account is in the post above, if you just click on it Joe). And given that over the years, she has not wavered, she has not sought out the limelight, she has merely persevered, her words still resonate.

    As opposed to Mr and Mrs Thomas who still harbor grudges, it seems.

  35. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    If this was drunk-dialing, it appears that her habits are of long standing, as the WaPo article mentions previous calls she’s made in other situations where an individual’s character was questioned.

    Actually, I think this is of a piece w/ the grievance-nursing that seems to a big part of tea party rhetoric. This is a woman who plainly doesn’t have any real problems to think about.

    A great quote from one of TBogg’s commenters:

    I think this only proves that the Teabaggers are the real big tent party. Their views run the gamut from no masturbation to decorating the work place with your pubic hair.

    Is this a great country or what?

  36. ROgirl said on October 20, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    I wonder if the wives of the men who made sexual comments in front of me in the workplace would believe that their husbands did such things. I never reported anyone, never felt threatened, but the incidents accumulated over the years. They never happened with other people present, either.

  37. 4dbirds said on October 20, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    Word ROgirl. How I wish I could tell the wives of the soldiers (some of, since I also worked with some lovely, honorable men), I worked with what they said about them, how they treated other women and what they DID when they were on temporary duty and called themselves ‘temporary bachelors’. I couldn’t, I liked them too much to hurt them.

  38. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    Interesting clip from an interview w/ Angela Wright, who reports similar experiences w/ Thomas. She was subpoena’d and was prepared to testify, but they didn’t call her. Her testimony was, though, made part of the congressional record. She says she wasn’t called because the Republicans were afraid of what she had to say, and the Democrats were afraid of the Republicans!

  39. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 2:09 pm

    Historical sidenote: George H. W. Bush and I had dinner at the same restaurant on the night Thomas’s nomination was approved. I was living in Boston then, but was visiting a friend in DC. We’d been watching the hearings and then left for dinner at Rio Grande, a good Mexican restaurant in Bethesda, MD. As we were ordering, we saw all sorts of lights flashing outside the windows of the restaurant. Then, a line of men in suits formed a phalanx at the entry, and the prez, Barbara, and some other folks walked in and straight to a private room in the back. All happened very fast, but everyone stood and clapped, including me. Didn’t have time to think about what I was doing; it was just exciting to have the president drop in.

    Was amazing to see what was required for the president to get a fajita–or whatever. Probably even more complicated now.

  40. nancy said on October 20, 2010 at 2:23 pm

    Jolene,

    The other day I saw my ex-congressman had posted (on his Facebook page) an 18-month-old item from one of the British papers about how much had to be shipped in advance of Obama’s appearance at one of the G conferences in 2009 in London. The numbers were indeed astounding, although suspiciously, there was not a single source named, and the information appeared in no other newspaper, at least until some turd named Dale McFeatters from Scripps-Howard’s barely-breathing wire service regurgitated it as a canned editorial. Then it got picked up in Wingnuttistan, where there was much snickering over how the entourage included “12 teleprompters.” (P.S. Which I do not believe.)

    The implication, of course, is that somehow Obama insists that it be this way, as though he has a choice in the matter. When he has made self-deprecating jokes about the hoo-haw that follows him everywhere from the very beginning.

  41. LAMary said on October 20, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    Count me in on having had my share of uninvited sexual comments back in the day. I had a boss who propositioned me and when I turned him down, told everyone I HAD slept with him. There were no laws then to protect women from this stuff. Sexual harassment? What’s that?

  42. deb said on October 20, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    I love y’all. Phalanx. Wingnuttistan. This is the smartest blog, with the smartest followers, on the planet. And I would say that even if the proprietress were not my bff.

  43. Little Bird said on October 20, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    I once had one of the higher ups in corporate of the grocery store I worked in pepper me with questions about my sex life at a Christmas party. The owner of the store had left already and this guy felt perfectly safe since he was the highest “ranking” employee there.
    A few days later I received a mumbled apology and a few weeks later, a raise. And yes, I made sure EVERYONE in the store knew about the incident at the party.

  44. mark said on October 20, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    Mrs. Thomas has always marched to a beat I can’t follow, but her timing is impeccable. In the political world, this is the only story that matters much. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/10/20/2010-10-20_gop_widens_lead_over_democrats_just_before_2010_midterm_elections_poll.html?r=news/politics

    Anything that diverts the attention of the shrillest of the progressives away from the elections is helpful for those of us hoping for “change.” Headlines and harsh criticism directed to the wife of a judge with lifetime tenure, even if it lasts only a day or two, is a harmless distraction. Anita Hill/Clarence Thomas is ancient history, and unknown and uninteresting to the younger voters that carried Obama and are, thus far, sitting out this election.

  45. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 3:12 pm

    Part of the reason men may find it hard to believe reports of sexual harassment is that most men are not sexual harassers. In a former life, I had a colleague who studied this topic, and her research indicated that most men were respectful and appropriate and respectful in their interactions with female co-workers, but a small proportion of men were “high-volume” sexual harassers. That is, many women were being harassed by a relatively small number of men. Thus, lots of women have these experiences, even though the number of creeps who behave this way is relatively small.

  46. Dexter said on October 20, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    all I want to add is a little portion of Anita Hill’s testimony, verbatim quotes:

    “My working relationship became even more strained when Judge Thomas
    began to use work situations to discuss sex. On these occasions, he would
    call me into his office for reports on education issues and projects or he
    might suggest that because of the time pressures of his schedule, we go
    to lunch to a government cafeteria. After a brief discussion of work, he
    would turn the conversation to a discussion of sexual matters. His
    conversations were very vivid.

    He spoke about acts that he had seen in pornographic films involving such
    matters as women having sex with animals, and films showing group sex
    or rape scenes. He talked about pornographic materials depicting
    individuals with large penises, or large breasts individuals in various sex
    acts.

    On several occasions Thomas told me graphically of his own sexual
    prowess. Because I was extremely uncomfortable talking about sex with
    him at all, and particularly in such a graphic way, I told him that I did not
    want to talk about these subjects. I would also try to change the subject
    to education matters or to nonsexual personal matters, such as his
    background or his beliefs. My efforts to change subject were rarely
    successful.”

  47. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    On presidential travel, I came across this diagram detailing GWB’s travel arrangements, which tells me that presidents don’t invent these requirements. Security personnel and other affiliates do.

  48. Dexter said on October 20, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    Thanks, Jolene…I had no idea about the twin planes and the dummy motorcade (heh heh!)

  49. Jolene said on October 20, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    And another thing: Is it really shocking that Clarence Thomas would do what he’s accused of doing? Think of Carl Paladino. Leave aside the fact that he’s a candidate for a high government position. What sort of sixty-something successful businessman sends around the kind of emails that he has admitted sending? So unbelievably crude.

    Last night, Rachel Maddow reported that the chairman of the Virginia Beach, VA Republican Committee emailed a “joke” saying that his dog should be on welfare because he is “black, unemployed, lazy, can’t speak English and has no frigging clue who his Daddy is.” Who even thinks like that? (Details and follow-up here.)

  50. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    Dexter–Anita Hill had several co workers who were willing to testify that at the time the harassment occurred she had talked with them about it and was very troubled. The investigators for the Senate also got Thomas’ video rental history and he did rent a fair amount of pornography (Does “Long Dong Silver” ring a bell?)

  51. Deborah said on October 20, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    I also think the Ginny Thomas phone call was calculated to bring attention to herself, to sell a book or appeal to the loonies. This is the beginning of life as we will know it when the shit storm hits after the crazies win their elections. I had never seen or heard of Ginny Thomas until a few weeks ago she surfaced on my radar screen as a teabagger, introducing someone at a rally that I saw a clip of on the Rachel Maddow show (I think). I thought it was really weird that the spouse of a Supreme Court Justice would be so publicly political. Of course there’s no law against her being in the public eye that way, it just seems odd to me. Does any one know of any other scotus spouses who were/are as outspoken?

    Alex at #4, hilarious.

    And Moe, I had that same jaw condition that you described in your post on your blog. I was told it was from stress too.

  52. Dorothy said on October 20, 2010 at 3:39 pm

    Since I just so happened to be in the presence of President Obama this past Sunday night, I can tell you that while I stood for 90 minutes before the event started, then another 2.5 while the event lasted, I saw the underside of a large plane that was red on the belly, and it circled at least 8 times. I suspected that there were two of them, one probably being a decoy of sorts just in case of a breakdown in security. There were helicopters that came and went, fighter jets seen in evidence near the red-bellied plane, and untold Secret Service agents enveloped the place. I am not surprised by the numbers in that diagram, Jolene. I’m positive it’s a very fluid arrangement, too, depending on where the President is going.

    Oh and not to be left out of the discussion, I had a co-worker in 1976 who asked me several times to take off my shoes to show him my feet. I was 19 when I started working there. I learned to go the other way anytime I saw him coming down the hallway towards me. He wasn’t the only one who made propositions, either. I’m glad to say only a few of the men in that office were gross but it only takes one to teach you such lessons.

  53. LAMary said on October 20, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    Joe there actually was a polygraph test administered to Anita Hill and she passed. Clarence Thomas was not tested.

  54. deb said on October 20, 2010 at 4:06 pm

    In my first post-college job interview, the man who would become my boss had a son and daughter, both in their 20s. He informed me he viewed every female job applicant as a potential mate for his son, and every male applicant as a potential mate for his daughter.

    About six years later — by then I was this guy’s boss — the owner of the company asked me point-blank, “How’s your sex life?” I mumbled that I was dating someone, who happened to be a big advertiser. That seemed to be enough to satisfy him and he asked no further questions.

    And then there was the press foreman who frequently commented on my legs, but in that climate, his behavior barely even made me blink.

  55. 4dbirds said on October 20, 2010 at 4:09 pm

    Pre-army, I had a boss who would shut, lock the door and rub up against me. I was 18 and didn’t know what to do about such behavior. Why didn’t I quit? Gawd I was so stupid.

  56. Jeff Borden said on October 20, 2010 at 4:10 pm

    The galling thing about Ginni Thomas and her husband is their complete lack of a sense of propriety. It is insane to have the wife of a sitting justice of the SCOTUS involved in political issues of any kind and, yes, I would say this if the spouse of one of the so-called liberal judges were doing the same thing. It may not be illegal, but it is immoral, unethical and wrong.

    Clarence may hate affirmative action, but no one will ever convince me that he didn’t benefit from it. Bush 41 wanted a conservative black justice. He found Thomas, who he famously claimed was the most qualified applicant for the job, which was utter horseshit. Thomas didn’t have the chops and he hasn’t exactly grown on the job. He’s just a mini-Scalia. The image appropriate to me is from the classic schlock horror movie, “The Thing With Two Heads,” where the skull of a white racist (Ray Milland) is grafted onto the functioning body of a black man (Roosevelt Grier). Scalia and Thomas are indeed conjoined.

  57. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    Changing planes in Cinncy. Every one seems to think that Anita Hills testimoney was truthful. Why is her testimoney considered truthful and ya’ll belive her,yet when the same type of accusation were leveled at Bill Clinton by Paula Jones no one would back her?
    Pilot Joe.

  58. Julie Robinson said on October 20, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    I’ve just fired off another comment to a blog in my hometown, which ran this headline: Gals got’r done at Candidate Forum. My first comment said it was condescending. The writer replied that it was meant as a compliment to the gals who put together the forum on short notice. My reply: Calling adult women “gals” is condescending under any circumstances. Go back and check your AP Stylebook and its basic premise that writing should be free of bias.

    This is the crap that every woman lives with at some point in their lives. Some fight it, some doubt themselves, some internalize it so strongly that they think it’s okay or even something to pursue. I choose to fight. *fist in air*

  59. MaryRC said on October 20, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    I’m with Deborah and Catherine. The most likely explanation is that Ginny Thomas is looking for publicity and attention and if Anita Hill hadn’t made the phone call public knowledge, Thomas would have found a way to.

  60. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    apples and oranges, Joe. One is not the other. Paula Jones wanted the notoriety but Anita Hill did not. She only appeared because she was subpoenaed. You don’t see her on tv shows like “Dancing with the Stars” or whatever their ilk was back 19 years ago. Paula Jones would have killed to have as much publicity. Anita Hill has never wanted it.

  61. alex said on October 20, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    Joe, nobody believed Paula Jones then or now. Paula Jones started out making videos with Jerry Fallwell, fer Christ’s sake, and with each new release her stories changed and became more salacious. Bill Clinton really did fuck a lot of women. Just not her.

  62. Bob (not Greene) said on October 20, 2010 at 5:06 pm

    Joe, What are you talking about? Bill Clinton faced impeachment because of Paula Jones — it was lying to the court in the Paula Jones case that got him impeached. Clarence Thomas is a perv who was exposed (pardon the expression) by someone supoenaed to testify. What the hell benefit did she derive from it? She got nothing but grief on a national scale, while Clarence got a lifetime job of being one of the highest legal authorities in the land. Stop with the “b-b-b-but Clinton” crap. The guy hasn’t been president for a decade and his wife doesn’t call up Ken Starr asking for apologies when he’s not in the office.

  63. Sue said on October 20, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    No one would back her, Joe? I believe Ken Starr, and later the House of Representatives, found her information quite useful. Monica might get all the credit, but Paula did a lot of the ground work.
    And no I do not mean that in any naughty way. Get your minds out of the gutter, people.

  64. mm said on October 20, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    I saw Clarence Thomas interviewed by Jan Crawford Greenburg at the 92nd St. Y a few years ago.

    He says he’s been kept down his entire life and when people actually get to know him they are amazed at what a fantastic person he is.

    I saw Stephen Breyer interviewed at the New Yorker Festival a few years ago and he talked about how much he’s trying to keep communication open between the justices so that they remain on friendly terms and can discuss issues in a civilized manner.

    Quite a difference.

    And regarding the security apparatus that moves with any president — there’s a National Geographic documentary about the Secret Service that you can stream on Netflix if you want to see what is involved. It was made while George W. Bush was president. Utterly amazing what they do but absolutely necessary.

    Did you ever watch “The Clinton Chronicles”? It was pushed by Jerry Falwell and if you read Rick Perlstein’s book “Before the Storm–Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus” you run into some of the same people that are in this movie. They just don’t give up.

  65. Sue said on October 20, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    Speaking of Clarence, this is interesting:
    http://thinkprogress.org/2010/10/20/scalia-thomas-koch/

  66. LAMary said on October 20, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Julie, there is a supervisor here who calls women girls. I have male peers. If one of them falls behind on his paperwork this guy tells them to ask one of the girls to take care of it. We had a very high level position to fill last year. The applicants were narrowed down to one white male and one black woman. This guy referred to them as “Michael and the girl.”

  67. Jeff Borden said on October 20, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    What cannot be stated often enough is that Anita Hill did not volunteer this information. She was subpoenaed.

    I will certainly not defend the actions of Bill Clinton with regards to Paula Jones, Monica Lewinsky or some of the other names to which he is linked. In those cases, he was someone “in charge,” who was coming on to women using his position of power. It was sexist and it was wrong. The Lewinsky angle was particularly perturbing, given the enormous variance in their ages. Yeah, she was over 21, but not by much.

    So, while there is much to despise in the actions of hellspawn like Lucianne Golberg, her doofus son, Jonah, the “world’s worst friend,” Linda Tripp, the panty-sniffing Ken Starr and, of course, the ringmaster, Newtie Gingrich, the married man who was banging a mistress while he accused the POTUS of adultery, none of this would ever have happened if Bill Clinton had a scintilla of common sense.

    There were plenty of other reasons why Clarence Thomas should never have been nominated for SCOTUS beyond what he was accused of by Ms. Hill. But let’s cut the woman some slack: she was compelled by law to testify. And as others have noted, she reaped the savage whirlwind, while Clarence sits mute next to his puppetmaster, Scalia, and continues to make things difficult for the poor, the powerless, the dispossessed for the rest of his miserable, crabbed life.

  68. coozledad said on October 20, 2010 at 6:58 pm

    I’ll believe the Republicans’ embrace of strictly bible-sanctioned sexuality when they depose even one of their pervs, instead of waiting for them to die of autoerotic asphyxiation. For all we know, Vitter’s still chopping them off in his diaper down at Mme. Devereaux’s House of Pancakes, when he’s not asking his staff to give him their best Stanley Kowalski.

  69. Deborah said on October 20, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    Joe, as others have said comparing the personhood of Anita HIll and Paula Jones is, well no comparison, it’s certainly not apples to apples, not even apples to oranges, more like apples to tuna fish.

  70. alex said on October 20, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    Apples to tuna fish? Surely the Republican handlers who got her the Mercedes and the nose job taught her about Monistat and how to use it.

  71. Joe Kobiela said on October 20, 2010 at 10:56 pm

    Bob,not greene,
    I’ll forget about Clinton, when you forget about GWB. The other week someone still posted Bush stole Fla for cryn out loud.
    Nice down here @ WDW
    Pilot Joe

  72. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 20, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    So, given the ‘tween epochs age of so many of us here, and a plurality female, with so many watching “Mad Men” I’m quite curious, and not in a Clarence Thomas sort of way.

    Do any of you watching “Mad Men” and being older than 50 think that this set of portrayals is likely to promote, or suppress sexual harassment claims? I can envision either way, as Weiner et al. so neatly and accurately describe and display just how bad it was not that long ago.

    It’s not that much better today, but it certainly is more intentionally covert. The echo here is that Thomas strikes me as a basically insecure guy, of whatever ethnicity, who is trying to enjoy the Draper-esque milieu he thinks he’s entered in DC, but is awkwardly aware that the times, they are a changing, and actually turning into a mixmaster where you can lose a finger, or more. I worked under a Clarence Thomas literally as that case played out on TV, and each day triggered a new definition of painful as the conversations cluelessly bounced off of the zeitgeist.

    Before the year was out, a secretary who was not taking it anymore had filed actions against that place; I had to say in a deposition what was (and wasn’t) going on, and before the next year was over, I was gone, as higher-ups couldn’t figure out why we male underlings weren’t rallying ’round the phallocracy.

    Good times, good times.

  73. moe99 said on October 20, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    Joe, I think you can take up your GWB rant with prospero, it wasn’t Bob not Greene afaik. And for all you know, which you don’t, I wanted Clinton to resign at the time. I thought his behavior was execrable.

  74. Catherine said on October 20, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    Jeff tmmo, I think it’s analagous to the Mad Men episode with the littering. Showing the behavior, but tucked neatly and nostalgically in the past, cues the viewer to pat herself on the back about how much better things are now. By doing so, the viewer refocuses away from troubling facts about glass ceilings and making 77 cents for every dollar a man makes.

  75. brian stouder said on October 21, 2010 at 12:43 am

    What a great thread; and impossible to say who won it.*

    But I will go for the cheap and easy points (as always!), and a gentleman’s C- today, by questioning the Proprietress’s grammar here, at the end of the post:

    My eight min­utes is up. Have a great day, all.

    *It’s like Dancing With The Stars Results Show; you have the Unfair Advantage crowd of real writers and/or well educated and/or just-plain-smart folks, and then pikers and back-markers like me, galumphing around the stage.

    For the record, way back in the day I was sympathetic to Thomas’s day in the dock; the whole era of “where do I go to get my reputation back?” and the rejection of Bork really upset me.

    Looking back on those days, and those opinions that I had, makes me realize (in excruciating detail) how utterly, sincerely, and unalterably wrong a person can possibly be.

    Aside from that, I’m thinking I shall have to go see Tony Bennet (not the singer) tomorrow when he comes to Fort Wayne. He is the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and it begins to look like those people might actually sieze a major Fort Wayne Community Schols school or two (such as South Side, which has 1,600 students, including my son) and make it a “privately run” Charter School.

    What magic will that have – other than magically converting me into a screaming sign waving street protester?

    Friend of NN.c and FWCS school board president Mark the shark GiaQuinta pointed out at the last board meeting that Indianapolis Public Schools is bigger than Fort Wayne Community Schools by 235 students; 235 students is all that separates IPS (the largest school district in the state of Indiana) and FWCS (the second largest school district in the state of Indiana).

    And IPS received 235,000,000 more dollars than FWCS did; a million dollars a kid, at the margin!

    I’d lake to ask – How does that work, Mr Bennett?

  76. Dexter said on October 21, 2010 at 1:16 am

    Anita Hill, Brandeis professor, went to work and dealt with the press again yesterday, like 1991. Andrea Mitchell, NBC Nightly News, reported that her students had no knowledge of the 1991 proceedings.
    I pondered this and thought it was true to form, Anita Hill carrying on, working, not publicizing her starry past, just teaching.
    Then I thought of the students. You have got to be shitting me, kids!
    Now think about it, think of the events that happened the year you were born, I mean the big events of that calendar year. If you read at all, you would certainly have attained a modicum of history facts, at least the daily almanac facts.
    At least I know Harry Truman was POTUS the year I was born , East and West Germany were formed as nations, and the civil war in China ended. OK, I don’t know much else off the top of my head about 1949, except most households didn’t have televisions yet, and rural electric had only been around my home county for 13 years at that time. But to have a celebrity teaching you and not even be aware of her famous past? In this age of instant access to the internet? Unreal.
    Only the scientists and chemists here may have heard of Harold Urey, who discovered “heavy water” in 1931 and received a Nobel Prize for his work in 1934. Now this was never taught to us in high school, but years later I read a story about Mr. Urey , (who was born in Walkerton, Indiana in 1883,)stating he had attended one year of high school where I attended school. I was elated to find it was apparently true, witnessed by a great nephew of Mr. Urey whom I worked with, the coincidence was strange, I know…and my point is that if you just keep your eyes and ears open you will just KNOW some stuff that you just , well, know from observing the world and its history.
    How could these Brandeis students not even know about Anita Hill when they sit in her classrooms regularly?

  77. Dorothy said on October 21, 2010 at 8:58 am

    But Dexter I think you used the wrong word to describe Ms. Hill – she is not a celebrity. She is a person of note, perhaps, due to her being subpoenaed to testify in the hearings for Clarence Thomas, but I would not call her a celebrity. And since I work at a college and frequently interact with students, I am not the least surprised to know that they were not aware of Ms. Hill’s high profile past.

  78. Jean S said on October 21, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    It’s beyond odd for Ginny to make the call. It’s not odd for Ms. Hill to forward the call to Brandeis security, or for the Brandeis folks to forward it to the FBI.

    And then…it gets leaked. Huh. I keep wondering about that.