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A Faerie's Farthing

Flitting through the internets looking for sparkly bits. All content mine and not to be reproduced without permission.

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Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Perkie Parade Continues

The Perkie Parade Continues

Even with no overt link to LieraqGate, Perkie isn't having such a good go of things at the moment; or at least her nomination isn't faring well. She seems to be a rather chipper sort of person; who knows if any of this even phases her.

But statements like this from members of the Judiciary Committee can't be a good sign:

...the Senate Judiciary Committee has yet to recieve its updated questionnaire from nominee Harriet Miers. We're told it'll get to them around 11 p.m. ET. Said NY Sen. Chuck Schumer in a statement at 8:45 pm: "This is another in a series of disappointments. The Miers nomination is suffering from a serious bout of delay, distraction, and disorganization and needs a dramatic turnaround."

Maybe the White House's current legal woes are just taking up all of her time; it's understandable that she couldn't get the questionnaire returned until after shrubya went to bed. His handlers are definitely working overtime right now and Harriet is, apparently, chief among them. Maybe that's what all this "pioneer" talk means...Harriet Miers: Handholder-in-Chief:

Move over Eddie Haskell. Harriet Miers could teach you a thing or two about sucking up. Papers released earlier this month by the Texas state archives show a woman who admired the boss and wasn't afraid to show it, with puppy-dog cards and flowery notes in her own hand, often added to official typed correspondence.

"You are the best Governor ever — deserving of great respect!" Miers wrote to George W. Bush in a belated card for his 51st birthday. (Which is why the puppy on the front of the card has such a hangdog look). At the bottom of the greeting card, she added, "At least for thirty days — you are not younger than me." In a flowery thank-you card, she wrote, "Hopefully Jenna and Barbara recognize that their parents are 'cool' — as do the rest of us. ... All I heard is how great you and Laura are doing ... Texas is blessed!"

People like Perkie keep Hallmark stores in business. I'm sure everyone knows the type, but I'm originally from Texas and - trust me - it's a unique breed down there. In that context, reading this article gave me more insight into her character than anything else I've seen about her. I almost feel like I know her. I'd bet anything she drinks sweetened iced tea. And calls people "honey" a lot, especially shrubya.

It's probably fair to say her cloying sweetness is not an act - that's really how she is. Not to say that she doesn't get a little over-the-top now and again, but I suspect it is simply a product of her upbringing from that era in Texas. Call it what you will, but it does seem she excels at ingratiating behavior.

...Can flattery this blatant work?

Can you say Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers? "Boy, is she good," says business consultant Richard Brenner of Chaco Canyon Associates in Boston. The little aside in the birthday card about their age difference is particularly impressive, he says.

"With that personal, almost private connection between the two of them, she is building a secret little tree house where they can both sit sometimes."

A Presidential tree-house. Heh heh

"We like to think that the smarter a person is, the higher she ascends up the ladder of success, the less susceptible that individual is to flattery," Stengel writes. "In fact, the opposite seems to be the case. People of high self-esteem and accomplishment generally see the praise directed at them as shrewd judgment rather than flattery."

Of course, we know it isn't just "people of high self-esteem and accomplishment" exhibiting this trait. It also frequently occurs in narcissistic, megalomaniacal wankers who wind up in positions of power. President "Boy in the Bubble" probably eats it up like candy. I doubt he ever ponders the nature of Perkie's sycophantic outbursts; I'm sure he thinks he was the "best governor ever" too. Nonetheless, Perkie might want to tone it down a bit, lest it backfire:

"The reality is she was trying to set an emotional tone for the relationship. I don't think that's necessarily always bad. It's a question of whether it's sincere."

Bush was a famously average student and has never pretended to be part of any intellectual elite. (In fact, he has honed his reputation as a regular guy over his years in public service.) So when former White House speechwriter David Frum wrote on his blog that once he'd heard Miers describe Bush as "the most brilliant man she'd ever met," tongues across the political spectrum were set wagging: Could she really mean it? And if she was sincere, did this reflect poorly on her judgment?

Neither scenario bodes well for her prospects as a Supreme Court justice. Nor does her poor grammar:

"At least for thirty days — you are not younger than me."

If she was vetting shrubya's speeches, it's no wonder the Niger claim escaped her notice.


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