Friday, August 04, 2006

AMERICA'S POLITICAL ILLNESS: SYMPTOM #73

Straight from the "Wow, He Really Is Deluded Afterall" Files, AP reports that Joe Lieberman considers his plummeting poll numbers a catalyst to "shake up" his supporters, carrying him to a dramatic come-from-behind victory over Ned Lamont on Tuesday.

Uhhhh, Joe? Who, exactly, are your supporters, and where do you suppose they've been hiding?

I mean, think about what he's saying: I've been a Democrat, albeit a rather conservative one, for many years. I'm the elected Senator from a generally Democratic state. As the Democrats' fortunes have fallen the past few years, mine have sunk with them. So . . . I decided to announce that if I lost in the primaries to my opponent -- an opponent with an apparent advantage in terms of liberal bona fides -- I'd nonetheless run against him in the general election. And this will work because of my army of "supporters."

Say what?

Joe: In order to win in this primary, you have to carry a majority of Democrats. But you basically told these Connecticut Democrats to Fuck Off!

Once again, it's this kind of willful obtuseness that stands as a proxy for the astonishing lack of perspective, the "out-of-touchness" of so many of America's elected officials. I know Lieberman's electioneering, I know he's trying to keep a positive spin on things. But at what point do you stop listening to the spin, call bullshit, and just say, "Enough Is Enough."

Kick 'Em All Out. Start over fresh in '07. Let's get moving forward again. I'll admit, I don't know jack about Ned Lamont. But I know that the incumbent against whom he's running is an entrenched, clueless clown.

Go Ned.

10 Comments:

Blogger Otto Man said...

It's Joementum, baby! Just like an object dropped from a great height, it picks up more and more speed as it approaches the ground.

11:58 AM  
Anonymous Mike said...

That's a good one.

12:20 PM  
Blogger BookieD said...

Although I am not a Democrat, I have been pretty uncomfortable with the notion that Daily Kos and company from around the country should be meddling so heavily in Connecticut politics. I would understand if the netroots machine was working so hard to unseat a Republican, as that at least helps Democrats re-take the Senate and, by extension, Congress. Notwithstanding Lieberman's support for the Iraq war, this election really is a local matter. Is it really everone else's place to decide on behalf of the voters of Connecticut whether Joe Liberman adequately represents their interests in the Senate?

12:58 PM  
Anonymous fizure said...

"Is it really everone else's place to decide on behalf of the voters of Connecticut whether Joe Liberman adequately represents their interests in the Senate?"

Umm, what are you talking about? Any CT citizen can vote for whatever candidate they want. Last time I checked, the constitution allows for freedom of speech. Your implication that because I live in New York I should somehow not care about a very important Senate race in CT, because it is a "local matter" is quite strange.

I don't know if you got the memo, but what's happening in CT is about what the future of the democratic party will be. It will, to a very large extent, determine whether or not the DLC more centrist-right elements prevail with in the 'ole Dunkey (aka. "The Clintonites"--oh yeah, I really love thos bastard! They did a grrreat job in the 90s, *sarcasm*) or there will be a turn against the neocons back to more neoclassical enlightmentment values of the liberalism I hold dear and which Ann Coulter, O'Rielly, Rush & Co. shit on as careers.

Either way, I don't hold out much hope. Our foreign policy situation is becoming so unstable that even if a reasonable movement of democrats could eventually take power (as the current democrats are useless) they would certainly be fucked over by an economy on the fritz, oil depletion and the scary as politics which will arise from all three.

Good day,

3:04 PM  
Blogger BookieD said...

Oh, geez, here we go. My first comment on what seems to be an intelligent political/Mets blog, and I get a flame for not embracing the "Nedrenaline." Did I touch a nerve here?

I don't recall saying anything about prohibiting free speech or that Connecticut voters can't vote for whomever they choose. I certainly don't see that I wrote anything about what people should care about. I agree that the Constitution provides that the citizens of Connecticut can vote for whomever they want to represent them in the Senate, though I am not sure whether its the US or Conecticut State constitution that so provides. Regardless, that same constitution also insures that citizens of Berkely, California and Williamsburg, Brooklyn can NOT vote in the CT Senate race. All I was saying is that all the money and effort being poured into a state senate primary by people who (i) are not consituents of the office being contested and (ii) have no tangible stake in the outcome makes me uncomfortable. Am I allowed to care about that, or does free speech only go in one direction (against the JoeMentum, I guess)?

No, I didn't get that memo. I guess I'm not on the mailing list for matters concerning the future of the Democratic Party (as I said in my comment, I'm not a Democrat). However, your point is what underscores my concern. As I understand it, it is a national internet/activist community that decided to make the Connecticut senatorial primary the battleground for the future of the Democratic party. I don't remember reading anywhere that the people of Connecticut signed up for that. Then again, maybe I didn't get that memo either.

4:04 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Bookie-

I've commented with Fiz a number of times at various sites, and I assure you he's not shouting you down or trolling or anything. It's cool.

Anyway, I agree with one of your implied points: in today's world, with local interests getting conflated with not only national, but global, ones, it's pretty damn important that the federal government stay as far outside of the machinations and decisios of municipal legislating as possible.

(Man, that's one ponderous sentence. Yuck. But I don't feel like tweaking it right now)

That said, I just can't agree with your statement that those outside CT have no tangible stake in the outcome.

A US Senator nominally represents his state in DC, but because the senate makes laws that the whole nation's bound to follow, a senator from any state has direct influence on all citizens.

It may very well be true that press gadflies from both sides of the aisle stick their noses into a few too many governor/mayor/state assembly races, but I think the election of a US Senator is a whole different game.

Especially when the guy in question is a national figure, due to his VP run as well as his assertive stance on the Patriot Act, the War, etc.

4:36 PM  
Blogger BookieD said...

Mike/Fiz--Sorry to be so sensitive. I take back the flame comment.

I do concede there is some degree of national interest in Senate elections, but most of the time the national interest is prevalent in the general election, not at the primary level, which IMO is much more local. But I'm more of a State's Rights guy anyway, so I would feel that way.

The problem I have is that this situation does not really appear to be issue-driven at all, but merely a intraparty power struggle at the national level playing itself out on the local turf of Connecticut primary voters, and it does not appear that that the players have much interest in the local matters that a primary election would ostensibly be about.

5:02 PM  
Blogger Otto Man said...

Well, the idea that the backlash to Lieberman is being directed by Kos and against the will of Connecticut voters is a little off.

At the state Democratic convention a while back, Lamont got a third of the votes from the delegates. These are the hard-core party activists, and for a sitting Senator to get snubbed by them speaks volumes.

Traditional Democratic constituencies within the state are even more incensed at Lieberman's actions this past term. Labor, women's groups, civil rights organizations, you name it. Joe pulled off a couple endorsements from the national organizations (NARAL, Sierra Club) but the local folks aren't buying it. (Doubt me? Check out this clip of local labor reps.)

If you want to talk about importing outsiders to a local Senate race, though, check out this story. Yes, that's Lieberman bringing in -- and paying -- people from outside the state to heckle, harrass, and intimidate his opponent and his local supporters. That's a DC Big Pharma lobbyist shouting down Lamont, a kid from Boston acting innocent, and who knows what else. The College Republicans here in NYC have been running shuttles up to CT to do battle. Any scorn for them?

Anyway, no race is purely local. If the president can use taxpayer money and Air Force One to travel around the country stumping for Republicans, then ordinary people like me can send Ned Lamont a $50 check too. Fair's fair.

5:23 PM  
Blogger Alan P. said...

Lieberman represents everything that is wrong with American politics, a thirty seven year career with full entitlement to lifetime benefits not to mention the markers he can call in for all the grift he shoveled out throughout his long and self-serving tenure. We need to throw out all those bum politicos before this entire country is nothing but sackcloth and ashes.

5:50 PM  
Blogger Mr Furious said...

A couple instances that illustrate where Joe's loyalty lies...

In 2000, When Liebereman agreed to run for the VP slot with Gore, there was discussion as to whether he should concurrently run for his Senate seat AND V.P., or whether he should decide to support another Democrat to replace him.

Joe, always looking out for number one decided that if Gore lost, he still wanted his Senate seat. Selfish, yes, but really that bad?

Worse than you think. If Gore had won (ahem), Lieberman would be VP, and he would have to relinquish his seat. His replacement would be picked by the Governor of Connecticut. In 2000, that was REPUBLICAN John Rowland. So Joe was willing to hand his seat to the Republicans if he won, just so he could have a fallback if he and Gore lost. And remember, after the 2000 election, one seat to the Republicans would have cost the country dearly. Jeffords later leaving the Republicans would not have swung the Senate, and the Dems would never have had control for Bush's entire term.

How exactly does that serve his constituents? The party? The country? It doesn't. It serves one person. Him.

Fast forward to 2006. If Joe loses the Democratic primary (and all polls indicate he will—I'm not so sure), he has announced he will run as an independant. Joe Lieberman is a Democrat. He and Bill Clinton want us to believe he is a GOOD Democrat. But if the Democrats in Connecticut decide they want to go in another direction, Joe Lieberman feels entitled enough to his Senate seat to thwart the wishes of Democratic voters and run as an independant, hoping to peel off enough Republican votes to keep his seat.

There are also continuing rumors that one day Lieberman would be offered Rumsfeld's job. If it ever happens it would be after the election, and if Lieberman wins, and then takes the Secretary of Defense job, he will once again hand his seat over to a Republican Governor to fill.

Fuck that guy. It's all about him, and always has been.

12:42 AM  

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