She's Broke!

Finally, just as she goes down in flames, a reason to like Harriet Miers.

Today's Slate contains several interesting articles about Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers, but my hands-down favorite is one by a former securities analyst that points out that at 60, Bush's longtime crony has nowhere near enough money for a secure retirement. Yep, that's right, consigliore to George W. Bush, the man who decreed that his (now squandered?) political capital would be spent privatizing Social Security.

When Miers left Dallas law firm Locke Liddell in 1999--and the $624,000 salary she earned as a managing partner--her IRA (then a firm profit-sharing account) contained between $500,000 and $1 million. Every year since, however, this account balance has mysteriously declined, so much so that it now totals the aforementioned $207,000...

...So, where has all that retirement money been going? Perhaps to another expense category depressingly familiar to most Americans: health-care costs. According to the Journal and AP, Miers is the primary caretaker for her 91-year-old mother, who has required in-home and nursing-home care since the mid-1990s. That a decade of her mom's health care could consume several hundred thousand dollars set aside for Miers' own retirement won't come as a surprise to anyone who has had (or paid for) a long-term illness in recent years.

I possess a uterus, and damn strong feelings about retaining control of it, but I daresay the spectre of abortion becoming illegal in this country is softened considerably by the thought of a justice who has some recent experience with what it's like to find that being middle class has diddly to do with financial security.