Saturday, March 29, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
When they set out, it all looked so bright — away to the West, to the Denver convention, nothing but blue skies ahead. They had a continent to cross, a nation to convince, and they vowed to do it in a way that had never been done before. They moved briskly across the plains of the Bush presidency. There was the scarecrow president who didn’t know the price of fuel or the ways of war. Flapping in the wind, he pointed one way, while 70 percent of the country wanted to go the other.
On to the arid side of the prairie, they passed one sunbaked skeleton after another — Larry Craig and his wide stance, Scooter Libby and his breach of trust, and a man from the Arabian Horse Association, Brownie. Each had the stench of yesterday on them.
Along the way, they moved by Mitt the Muddler, who couldn’t decide which way to go, and Rudy the Robo, muttering, “9/11, 9/11, 9/11.” Dining on squirrel was a guitar-plucking Huckabee, who at least knew how to keep folks entertained around the campfire.
These refugees from the other party had their nutty preacher, Pat Robertson, who blamed fellow Americans for the big attack. It was their fault, he said: the civil libertarians, the gays, the feminists brought this mass murder upon themselves. Uphill now, through the high plains, and still the Dems held together. They would not be like that tragic Donner Party of 1846, feuding and scrapping. It would all be over before the snows were gone. They shared their rations and steeled their will, convinced that one way or the other they would make history: a black man or a woman would lead them. They were Democrats doing the impossible: moving in one line, together.
Deep in the treeless expanse of the West, they came upon one of the stragglers from the other party: John McCain. Once, he had been a maverick. Now he looked old and worn and lost. His own party had left him for dead, he explained. Called him amnesty man. He seemed harmless enough, saying he knew nothing about the economy, confused about who was fighting whom in a distant part of the world. They didn’t give him a second thought.
And then, as the snow piled high deep into March, the Dems turned on each other. One of their leaders had been hanging around the camp of another preacher man, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. — a nutball like Robertson, blaming America for bringing on the horrid attack. What is it with these men of God? Should have left them home.
The Dems grew raggedy, worn, desperate. Whereas the first Donner Party was bogged down in the snow of the high Sierra, these Dems could not get out of the Rockies. One faction wanted to declare it over, based on greater popular support. The other one wanted simply to stick around long enough, waiting for the rival to self-destruct.
Their former leader, Clinton the Elder, was kept on a leash — nothing but cards at night. He said he’d seen far worse in his time. “Will there be more animosity as this
thing goes on? Yes.” That didn’t help.
Looking for leadership, they turned to a quiet man in the rear, a doctor from Vermont: Howard Dean. Do something, Doc! Scream! But he cowered, mumbling about do-overs and going back to Michigan or Florida.
At their lowest ebb, they looked back and again saw the straggler, McCain. He was stronger, walking with renewed vigor despite his age. He was joined by a grizzled old cuss named Cheney. One strange hombre, Cheney had shot a man in the face. He’d forgotten that his country was a democracy. When he was told that two-thirds of the nation wanted to heed the founders’ advice and avoid prolonged foreign conflicts, he spit on the ground, and said, “So?”
His party was united. What had been hatred for McCain was now hatred for the other party’s preacher. They could direct all their historic resentments, their bound-up frustrations, against this preacher, the Rev. Wright. So long as they hissed and booed at his picture every night, they stayed together, saying the nastiest of things. The original Donner Party made history for one reason: by eating their dead. Cannibalism — it was all they could do to stay alive.
These modern Dems press on, tearing into each other, crawling to get to the summit, still five months away, in the mile-high city. They are now ravenous with hunger, and it is starting to show.
What are they hungering for? Power. Not service, nothing as altruistic as that. Hillary & Obama want the power, & want to make sure the other doesn't get it. How does this guy say Dean is quiet???
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Regarding the presidential race, all the focus in on Clinton v. Obama. This has not been a good last couple of weeks for the Obama campaign. Clinton leads in Pennsylvania. Obama's "former" pastor Jeremiah Wright's comments that have come to light are giving him heartburn. The "super delegates" are getting a little ancy.
NY Governor Elliot Spencer's dalliance with a high-priced call girl have been in the news this week.
In Tennessee there is a push in the legislature for more openness in records, we'll see how far that goes. I've posted some issues on the Tennessean's forums which have received copious response. One is regarding Obama's record on the 2nd Amendment, Obama, No Gun Shops Within Five Miles of Schools; Porn Shops OK. Obama's words on the 2nd amendment extrapolated to all individual rights troubles me - he seems quite flippant on the importance of individual rights in regard to legislating how these rights may be enjoyed. It is fun, however, to read the back & forth between Clinton & Obama supporters. Getting back to the national race on the democrat side, it's getting nasty down in the grassroots.
I'll have more as time goes on & events play out in our world.
Saturday, March 8, 2008
No one (democrat) sees her as being satisfied with anything less than the presidency. Democrats don't want the "bloodshed" of a tight campaign to go on through the convention. Obama is new on the scene. CW says that someone like him would be honored to be chosen as VP. If Clinton can get democrats to see him as VP - an alternative to the continued nasty campaign (or really nasty floor-brawl at the convention) - these democrats may lose some fire to push his presidency.
The Clintons are nothing if not shrewd & calculating political animals.
Monday, March 3, 2008
Tennessee lawmakers are getting ready to cross a line — the invisible 100-foot boundary that's supposed to separate candidates from the inside of a polling place on Election Day.
Nashville Democrats Sen. Joe Haynes of Goodlettsville and Rep. Gary Moore of Joelton, propose letting candidates for public office enter polling places, bearing gifts of doughnuts, pizzas, beverages and other goodies to feed poll workers.
Supporters call it a gesture of good will and kindness for the poll workers, many of whom are elderly volunteers working grueling 12-hour shifts. Opponents point out that the dividing line between the candidates and the voting booth is there for a reason.
An attempt to pass the House bill Thursday was derailed when supporters weren't able to kill an amendment by Rep. Donna Rowland, R-Murfreesboro, that would block the candidates from delivering the food in person.
"We need to make sure we're above reproach," Rowland said.
Lawmaker sees problem
The motion to set her amendment aside was defeated by a vote of 46-45. Opponents characterized the amendment as "heartless."
State Rep. Frank Buck, D-Smithville, warned that letting candidates deliver gifts of any sort to poll workers "will open the door for fraud."
"If your opponent brings a meal in, that means you've got to bring a meal in," Buck said. "People will try to fudge. Historically, that's what happens."
Moore, the House sponsor, bristled at the implication.
"I'm not trying to buy anybody's vote," he said. "To think that anybody's going to buy a vote for a sandwich is ludicrous."
State Election Coordinator Brook Thompson took no official position but noted that some counties have provisions for feeding poll workers.
Frank Buck is a true conservative democrat who is not liked by the democrat machine in Tennessee.
I don't think we really need to lay out all the potential issues with this? Especially with the more local elections - I know that some democrats in counties like mine are seeing the dramatic increase in conservatives elected to local offices, & they want to "stem the tide" as much as possible. I guess it's easier to try & get around the rules than to get better candidates with better ideas?