Technocrats or Moderates?
Ezra’s having an argument over whether to endorse Miers, who seems to not be a liberal nightmare. And from a policy perspective, I totally dig that. She doesn’t continue the Scalia tradition that scares many liberals. She does however continue the Michael Brown tradition of being an unqualified crony rather than experienced and decisive. Which I rambled “I’d rather a brilliant conservative than a mediocre crony.”
I think that’s a statement, especially when coming to the Supreme Court, that many people would disagree with (for my conservative readers, replace conservative with “brilliant liberal” and imagine I’m talking about Pres. Clinton). And yet, there are clearly positions that matter a great deal and we want technocratic competence before ideology. What are they?
So I see three options when discussing appointments by the other team:
a) brilliance is always more important than policy-moderation.
b) Policy-moderation is always more important than brilliance
c) It depends on the position.
For C, I’m kinda curious what people think what positions we should value competence or moderation more? And do you think our political culture can distinguish between the two, and find a need for moderate cronies on the Supreme Court while still putting brilliant biased technocrats in agency positions?