June 1, 2011

Personnel Is Policy

From the NYT:
In Shift, Justice Department is Hiring Lawyers With Civil Rights Backgrounds
By Charlie Savage 
WASHINGTON — Under the Obama administration, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division has reversed a pattern of systematically hiring conservative lawyers with little experience in civil rights, the practice that caused a scandal over politicization during the Bush administration. 
Instead, newly disclosed documents show, the lawyers hired over the past two years at the division have been far more likely to have civil rights backgrounds — and to have ties to traditional civil rights organizations with liberal reputations, like the American Civil Liberties Union or the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.... 
“During this administration, the department has restored the career-driven, transparent hiring process that will produce the most qualified attorneys for the job,” said Xochitl Hinojosa, a Justice Department spokeswoman. 
... Specifically, about 90 percent of the Obama-era hires listed civil rights backgrounds on their résumés, up from about 38 percent of the Bush group hires. (There were about 47 Obama-era hires and about 72 in the last six years of the Bush administration.) 
Moreover, the Obama-era hires graduated from law schools that had an average ranking of 28, according to U.S. News & World Report. The Bush group had a lower average ranking, 42. 
At the same time, there was a change in the political leanings of organizations listed on the résumés, where discernible. Nearly a quarter of the hires of the Bush group had conservative credentials like membership in the Federalist Society or the Republican National Lawyers Association, while only 7 percent had liberal ones. 
By contrast, during the first two Obama years, none of the new hires listed conservative organizations, while more than 60 percent had liberal credentials. They consisted overwhelmingly of prior employment or internships with a traditional civil rights group, like the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. 
Those findings were amplified by a report on Tuesday by The National Law Journal, which analyzed the résumés of nearly 120 career lawyers hired since 2009 across the entire division. Of that group, it reported, at least 60 had worked for traditional civil rights organizations. 
Robert Driscoll, a Bush administration official at the division who left before the hiring scandal, said that a policy of allowing professional civil rights lawyers to make hiring decisions based on civil rights experience was tactically “brilliant” because it would result in disproportionately liberal outcomes without any need for interference by Obama political appointees.

33 comments:

Dregs said...

"Justice Department is Hiring Lawyers With Civil Rights Backgrounds"

"At the same time, there was a change in the political leanings of organizations listed on the résumés, where discernible."

The author of the article seems oblivious to the fact that these things are one and the same.

Civil rights background = lefty

Anonymous said...

"...the practice that caused a scandal over politicization during the Bush administration."

And the Obama practice is not a scandal?

Anonymous said...

Attorney = lefty.
I am amazed that certain paid-up members of the establishment right (e.g. National Review's thuggish super-lawyer Andrew McCarthy) froth and rave about the Justice Dept's bureaucratic misadventures. It only makes the Division of Slavery Reparations Calculation or whatever it's called into a flashpoint and a cause celebre for upper-class Upper-West-Side liberals. Normal citizens rightly recoil from the legalistic obsessions which are the bailiwick of Greenwald and lesser lights like that "Diary of a Mad Law Professor" chick at The Nation. Drawing attention to DOJ's make-work undermines the natural impression of its parasitic frivolousness which all thinking men perceive.

Gotta laff about "Xochitl" though; this must have become trendy during the ethnocentric 70s in L.A. cuz about 10 years ago I started running into paralegals and professors and xochitl workers bearing this appellation. Having an unpronounceable name can't have been easy growing up but perhaps it gave them that vicious edge to ascend to the top of MALDEF or in this case the Obama administration.

The Xochitl Network said...

Now I'm waiting for Steve Levitt's analysis of how all these folks were hired on the basis of their christened names ("Che"; "Taneequa", "Hakim"; "Sacco-Vanzetti"; etc.)

Anonymous said...

Xochitl Hinojosa?

Anonymous said...

A Democratic president hires lefties when a Republican president hired "conservatives" and people are complaining. This is ridiculous.

Maybe we should contrast what Obama is doing with what Clinton did to see if there is any merit to complaining about any of this.

keypusher said...

This points up a larger problem -- the law schools generate more good liberal lawyers than conservative ones, and the disproportion becomes greater in public policy areas like civil rights.

Anonymous said...

"Moreover, the Obama-era hires graduated from law schools that had an average ranking of 28, according to U.S. News & World Report. The Bush group had a lower average ranking, 42."

Well, at least Obamadministration is more meritocratic.

Anonymous said...

If conservatism is about favoring the best qualified over political considerations, Obama's hires from better colleges are more conservative picks than Bush's hires from lower colleges.

airtommy said...

The Bush DOJ captures everything that was wrong with the Bush Administration domestically. Rather than trying to advance conservative policy, Karl Rove was only concerned about winning elections in the near future.

Bush should have been exposing some of the worst evils of the leftists at the DOJ. The public is receptive to the idea that Affirmative Action has run amok. Instead, Rove started the unprecedented practice firing attorneys who wouldn't play ball with the "voter fraud" fraud. There is no significant voter fraud, but the idea of eliminating marginal Democratic voters via voter ID laws was just too juicy of a target for Rove.

Mencius Moldbug said...

I wonder if there's any way to quantify just how pwned the GOP is. You'd need a supercomputer. But would the supercomputer explode?

spandrell said...

Yeah well the Soviets pioneered this kind of politics. Nomenklatura, you know. The Chinese commies still use it very efficiently.

So welcome to communism.

jerry said...

Being on the losing end of a race war, being a victim of racist colonialism, has consequences. 95% of so-called "Civil Rights" are nothing more than the desire of non-whites to sponge off whites, and since this need to sponge will only abate when whites have been reduced to a socially and economically unprofitable resource expect "Civil Rights" to boom for the foreseeable future. Expect it to continue until the last white is dead. The massive brown flood hasn't had any real impact yet because the majority of them are unable or uninterested in participating in politics yet. When they do gullible whites who thought that "Civil Rights" and "anti-racism" were actually moral issues will come to understand that it is all really about exploiting them economically and in other ways, come to understand that they are the new serfs in an occupied country.

Thripshaw said...

What exactly did the Bush appointees do that was conservative? I guess they weren't hysterical enough witch-smellers and heretic burners for the "civil rights" loonies.

God save us from white hating zealots with a lifelong career in "civil rights" enforcement.

Steve's suggestion that Obama do a "Nixon to China" on race preferences is clearly not being heeded. Shocking!

Nanonymous said...

Obama-era hires graduated from law schools that had an average ranking of 28, according to U.S. News & World Report. The Bush group had a lower average ranking, 42.

One more illustration a group that can't compete honestly chooses the con artist path of civic rights law as their occupation. It's all big lies and profit. They are not even honest liberals.

Nanonymous said...

Ooops, obviously I misread the rankings and made a stupid comment. Oh well, won't be be the first time :-)

California kid said...

Communism in the USA is done with race as the bugbear instead of economic class. Same thing, same people doing it, same results... they just switched the bugbear.

jody said...

"If conservatism is about favoring the best qualified over political considerations, Obama's hires from better colleges are more conservative picks than Bush's hires from lower colleges."

because there's no chance that the lawyers obama is hiring are NAMs who got affirmative actioned into their law schools. no chance of that at all.

like barack obama and sonia sotomayor, it's certain the academic law careers of these people is based on sheer merit.

how about the justice department and true "genuises" like eric holder and thomas perez and loretta king, deliberately dropping the slam dunk black panther voter intimidation case? i guess those were all "merit" based law appointments?

sorry, it's pretty obvious the justice department hires are mostly affirmative actioned NAMs. as poster jerry explains, THAT'S THE WHOLE POINT! to use the law system against europeans.

jb or mz's black hoodie said...

"When they do gullible whites who thought that "Civil Rights" and "anti-racism" were actually moral issues will come to understand that it is all really about exploiting them economically and in other ways, come to understand that they are the new serfs in an occupied country."

I've been aware of this for almost a decade. Unfortunately, this particular zeitgeist isn't limited to American soil which makes it nearly impossible to adjust for such naivete by relocating to another country.

Anonymous said...

this is also a good way of assuring no more pesky whistle blowers mentioning that minorities weren't going to be prosecuted, etc.

Jack said...

as a student at a law school ranked lower than 42, i plan on continuing to vote Republican.

Dennis Dale said...

Progressives are calling Holder's increased attention to who/whom enforcement a "bright spot" against his co-option of Bush security excesses.
I call them part of a whole. Rightist security state paranoia and the shakedown state get along nicely.
That is until we finally go broke and all bets are off.
QE III might get us through the coming summer flash-riot season--cash-strapped municipals have an excuse to close down summer events they can expect to be flash-crashed--keep a lid on the fright, barring another black swan, then it's head for ze hills...

Anonymous said...

Essentially, the Bush admin found that there was a huge pool of totally unqualified young lawyers willing to join one of a few very shady, borderline treasonous organizations, such as the Federalist Society, in order to get sweet civil service gigs despite lacking the qualification, training or brainpower for it. When you look at it dispassionately, what we got was eight years of affirmative action largely benefiting the dumber sons and daughters of last generation's most reactionary lawyers, most of which were very unhappy they couldn't get into a better law school.

Anonymous said...

They'll be busy: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/census/2008-04-28-onebillion_N.htm
Favorite quote: "We could accommodate half or more of the new population [on parking lots]"

ATBOTL said...

"What exactly did the Bush appointees do that was conservative? I guess they weren't hysterical enough witch-smellers and heretic burners for the "civil rights" loonies."

Correct. Remember how politics in the USA works: the left is always pushing for more and the right makes a half-hearted attempt to stop them for a while and then caves in.

As America become less white, we can expect things like slavery reparations, more aggressive anti-white discrimination, lawsuits against anything that is predominately white, restrictions on un-PC speech etc. to be attempted by the left.

The DOJ civil rights division will be important in helping all this stuff along.

Thomas said...

How many points of GDP growth that we aren't seeing month by month do you think could be traced to all the Xochitls prowling the land with subpoenas and cease-and-desist orders over some business or another not having 1.3 more blacks on the payroll or some local bank not making home loans to uncreditworthy members of favored ethnic groups? 1%? 2%? More?

Anonymous said...

"very shady, borderline treasonous organizations, such as the Federalist Society"

The hell? Holy crap, what are you smoking, man?

eh said...

Nothing about the Obama administration impresses me as "brilliant".

Anonymous said...

"Moreover, the Obama-era hires graduated from law schools that had an average ranking of 28, according to U.S. News & World Report. The Bush group had a lower average ranking, 42."

This is a meaningless statistic. First of all, why use average ranking rather than median? Wouldn't the latter give a more accurate picture of where the DOJ lawyers are typically coming from?

Second, there's virtually no difference between the quality of students at any two schools outside of the top 14 but within the top 50 or so.* (We're talking about a couple LSAT points, plus the highly unreliable "reputation" component of US News' ranking system, which basically measures what professors and hiring partners thought of your law school 20+ years ago.)

*One caveat: BYU law school generally has better qualified students than its ranking would otherwise indicate. I've assumed that this is a function of it being a relatively new school, plus a certain amount of anti-Mormon bias among legal academics when it comes to its reputational score.

Svigor said...

Essentially, the Bush admin found that there was a huge pool of totally unqualified young lawyers willing to join one of a few very shady, borderline treasonous organizations, such as the Federalist Society, in order to get sweet civil service gigs despite lacking the qualification, training or brainpower for it. When you look at it dispassionately, what we got was eight years of affirmative action largely benefiting the dumber sons and daughters of last generation's most reactionary lawyers, most of which were very unhappy they couldn't get into a better law school.

Libs HAAAAAAATE it when you fight fire with fire. Drive's 'em bonkers.

Conservatives are supposed to fight honorably against dishonorable libs and lose.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

If conservatism is about favoring the best qualified over political considerations, Obama's hires from better colleges are more conservative picks than Bush's hires from lower colleges."

Conservatism should be be about preventing the country from falling into the hands of people named "Xochitl".

Anonymous said...

I suspect that civil rights law is almost entirely a liberal's game. Had I a law degree from any law school, whether first ranked or worst ranked, the DOJ's Civil Rights division is the last place I'd want to be. The only valid reason for a conservative to take a job there is to take a spot that would otherwise go to a liberal and to help clog up the works.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Yes, when you purchase a cat, you don't have to tell it to catch mice.

Similar to journalism hires.