THE BLOG

Lieberman's Mistaken Idea of Who's Polarizing

PBS's News Hour had a lengthy piece on the Lamont-Lieberman primary fight last night, and I watched Senator Lieberman say on camera that one of the "problems" if Ned Lamont wins the nomination for Senator from Connecticut is that "in Washington Lamont would be very polarizing."

80% of Democrats think the Iraq war was a mistake, and Lamont is in synch with them. So to whom would Lamont be polarizing? To the Republicans? I guess so.

Joe wants to keep the Republicans from having their feathers ruffled.

As RJ Eskow writes in his tongue-in-cheek rebuttal to the idea Lieberman folks and various pundits have been pushing that Ned Lamont is somehow radical, "If Lamont wins, your new Senatorial candidate will have the same wacky, crazy-leftist opinion of the war in Iraq as ... Chuck Hagel." (link: www.huffingtonpost.com/rj-eskow/i-will-now-use-a-brechtia_b_26737.html )

Friends in Connecticut (where I used to live), I hope you're going to the polls today, and I hope you'll vote for Ned Lamont.

With the enormous amount of damage George W. Bush has done to our country, Lieberman's supposed ability to "work with" the Republicans is not a sign of wonderful bipartisanship that gets good things done - his bipartisanship amounts to his agreeing with a lot of the Repbulican positions, and not being very forceful when he doesn't agree. And in terms of the war, he is not a bipartisan supporter, he's a shill for Bush, and never once held him accountable for the cherry picking of intelligence that was used to rev up the American people to go fight this war.

Lieberman made his pious speech about Bill Clinton's immorality during that waste of time triggered by the Republicans, but he has never said boo (that I know of) about any of the shocking things the Bush administration has done - their redefining torture to basically allow it, their declaring the Geneva conventions quaint and not applicable, their decision that Bush may imprison people for life and never give them a trial, the fact that Bush signed 700 hundred "signing statements" saying he doesn't "agree" with parts of the laws Congress has passed (the McCain torture bill in particular)... Joe is silent on all of that.

Joe was also a member of the Group of 14 who stopped Frist from destroying the filibuster a couple of years ago, but then he would not support the Democrats who wanted to filbuster Samuel Alito... so by not supporting the filibuster, he took away the one possibility of keeping Alito off the Supreme Court. Alito had a LONG paper trail, and it seems clear he's going to support every f-ing move that Bush does to claim more and more executive power. Alito clearly gets a hard-on for authority. I'm sorry, that's vulgar. Alito clearly thinks that authority and big business always warrant his support. I'm sure erections have nothing to do with it.

Republicans Arlen Specter and Lindsay Graham have both spoken out forcefully about their discomfort with Bush's warrantless spying on American citizens, in clear defiance of the law saying the President must seek warrants, easily obtainable, from the FISA court (so there's SOME balance of power somewhere)... again Lieberman is silent on that, to my knowledge. Specter and Graham don't seem to follow through on their upset, but I appreciate at least their speaking up, which is very rare in this lock-step-with-Bush Republican Congress.

And I had forgotten that Lieberman, that sanctimonious Hobbit, was on the right-wing Republicans' side on the Terri Schiavo case. Steve Anderson's post reminded me: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/steve-anderson/in-re-terri-schiavo-joe_b_26747.html

If you become brain dead and in a coma, and your spouse says it was your wish that you be allowed to die but your parents feel otherwise, and when the law says YOUR SPOUSE GETS TO MAKE THE DECISION, good ol' Lieberman, with his oh-so-brave morality, is of the opinion the Judge should overlook the law giving your spouse that right, and instead let your parents keep you alive in happy brain-deadness. For years and years and years. (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7284978/)

Thanks, Mr. Lieberman - keep your morality to yourself. Hopefully in your home in Connecticut, where I hope you get to retire soon. (Although maybe George W., who understandably adores you, will give you a cabinet position. Maybe he could make you Court Moralist, which is like Court Jester, only not funny, but pious.)

Not to mention that Lieberman's wife Hadassah is a lobbyist for the pharmaceutical company. And just to remind you, one of the major flaws of the administration's senior drug benefit program is that the pharmaceutical lobbyists got their way that none of the insurance companies can negotiate the price of the drugs, the pharmaceutical companies get to set them. (As anyone who's used health insurance - if you're lucky enough to have it - knows, the insurance companies normally negotiate down the "ticket price" of various hospital and doctor services. The Republican Congress legislated that they could NOT do that in the case of this drug benefit.)

So, really, Lieberman is just not a Democrat. He is Republican lite, and he's an annoying moralist, and he's been in office too long.

Please vote him out.

And for those pundits - many of whom also have been "in office" too long - who claim bloggers against Lieberman are "jihadists," and we're going to ruin the Democratic party... the history of the Democratic party since 2000 has been losing election after election, with their attempt to not be honest about what they think. (Al Gore was advised to be quiet about global warming in 2000, and he got stick-like in his trying to follow his handlers. Watching him engaged in his true beliefs in his movie An Inconvenient Truth, you suddenly see a man at ease, engaged, and a real leader. Our best one right now, I think.)

If 80% of Democrats in the country think the war is wrong, and are angry they were sold a bill of goods, why should we then be represented by somebody who's going to tiptoe around that issue? It doesn't make sense. And it hasn't won elections in the past.

Plus, of course, Lieberman doesn't "tiptoe" around the war issue - he actually supports the war in Iraq - still! -- and thinks it was the right thing to do, and he's in lock step with Bush on all of it. Saddam had nothing to do with 9/11, but either Lieberman thinks he did, or he's a secret neo-con who thinks we should invade countries and bring them democracy by a gun. And so far that's working out real well in Iraq, isn't it?

Finally, don't forget NY Times columnist David Brooks says that Lieberman is clearly the most sweet, lovable guy in existence and thinks it's just awful that Democrats don't want to send him back to Congress. He's a nice guy, we should vote him back in for his Niceness, it doesn't matter his actions don't fit the belief of most Democrats, according to Brooks. Republicans get to be firebrands and almost psychotic in their beliefs, but Democrats should be sweet and tame like Joe. Joe's a puppy. Do you want a puppy for senator?

Let's send Joe to retirement, and give him more time to have coffee with David Brooks. They can exchange interesting thoughts together.

And maybe Ned Lamont can go to the Senate and actually DO something that Democratic voters want their Senator to do.