Sven Wilson asks the question — not whether she’s qualified for the Supreme Court, but whether she’s even qualified for tenure at a major university. “When she was made a tenured professor at the University of Chicago, she had (as far as I can tell) only 3 5 publications (see correction below).  One of them was a book review (which counts for exactly zero in most fields) and one was a University of Chicago Law Review Article.”

Kagan is a very curious pick. Obama chose to break with recent precedent by looking beyond the federal bench for candidates, which would be commendable if it weren’t for the fact the only people more intoxicated with the power of the federal judiciary than federal judges are lefty law faculty. Catharine MacKinnon makes Ruth Bader Ginsburg look like Thomas Jefferson. Yet Obama chose not some powerhouse of liberal theory but a very well-heeled educrat who has made her way through the hedge mazes of academic insiderdom. What kind of a Supreme Court justice is such a person expected to make? Perhaps one compliant to executive power and political considerations — just as university bureaucrats have to be sensitive to academic politics. (As Lawrence Summers discovered.)