Shall We Focus on Saule Omarova’s Actual Plans?

I can’t speak to whether Biden’s nominee, Sully Umarova, would be a good banking regulator, or what she thinks is the right banking policy. But I’m pretty sure all of the following have nothing to do with the filter:

[1.] That at the age of 28, in 1995, she was arrested for theft and admitted to stealing things. Obviously bad behaviour, and I’m not one to feast on shoplifting; But while it is a big crime, it is still rightly seen as a relatively minor crime. And after 26 years of removal, it really does look simple, which I find hard to see as relevant in her qualities today.

[2.] Her ideas are supposed to have been shaped by her upbringing in the Soviet Union. Senator Patrick Toomey held that she “has an aversion to anything like free market capitalism,” … citing examples of her academic work (of course a perfectly legitimate critique, if it fairly captures her work), and added, “You can ask yourself, “Where is it from?” Does the person come up with these ideas?” Well, perhaps it is the contributing factor if a person grew up in the former Soviet Union, went to Moscow State University, and attended there with the Vladimir Lenin Academic Scholarship. ”

Unfortunately, native-born Americans are okay with coming up with socialist ideas, and of course many people who grew up under the Soviet system know especially well the problems of these ideas. Why not focus solely on the ideas she has already expressed as a scholar, rather than on her education in her late teens and early twenties (in a time and place when ambitious university students would be unwise to show their noses at a scholarship bearing Lenin’s name).

[3.] She wrote a thesis on “Economic Analysis of Karl Marx and Theory of Revolution in [Das Kapital]When she was a Soviet undergraduate student in the late 1980s, and as I anticipate that a thesis on economic analysis by Milton Friedman would not have been well received. The dissertation appears to be lacking, but I doubt very much that we can learn things from what she wrote when she was a 22-year-old undergraduate Soviet beyond what we can learn from what she wrote when she was an American law professor.

[4.] That she did not resign from the young communist union (Komsomol), which Soviet teenagers routinely joined if they knew what was good for them, and which they were over his age (until it was dissolved in 1991). Senator John F. Kennedy engaged in this specific line of interrogation.

Again, her work as a researcher is entirely fair game to determine her qualifications; I am skeptical of the claim that its “critics [are] her uniqueness because she is a woman and a minority”—I suspect they choose her because she is a candidate for the other party, and that is what one does nowadays. But going back to her 30 years of education, 25 years of arrest for a minor crime, makes no sense, however equal the trajectory in American politics today. .

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