I am not ashamed to beg. I am begging you to go to the polls tomorrow and vote for Ned Lamont. If you've ever trusted me with anything, trust me with this.
May whatever it is you believe about religion, hold on to that. The Spirit of us all must be moved so WE can RE-MOVE whatever darkness has descended on our America, the Beautiful. Remember 9/11. Remember the truths. With deepest gratitude to the author for sharing, I offer you the following:
The Message in the Coming Lieberman Defeat: It’s More than the War
This piece is time-sensitive. And as it might have an impact, I’d call it time-urgent.
This piece, I am hoping, could help to pre-empt the media from defining the message of the election in those terms that continue to protect and serve the Bushites. Conceivably it might also help to inspire the Connecticut insurgency to come out Tuesday in greater numbers.
If, when you read it, you also believe this piece could serve some useful purpose, I hope you will help to disseminate it ahead of Tuesday’s primary. Especially if you know people who might be able to spread the word in Connecticut itself, that could be valuable.
Postscript: This piece has been posted on the Action Forum of MoveOn.org. If you believe that this piece warrants being featured prominently, one way you can help achieve that is to go to that MoveOn site and vote to give it a high rating. Higher rate pieces are given higher priority treatment. The site on which this piece appears there is
The Democratic voters of Connecticut –apparently about to reject Senator Joe Lieberman in Tuesday’s primary—are poised to send the national Democratic Party a message. And the media are poised to help the Democrats, and the nation as a whole, to misinterpret it.
It’s all about the war in Iraq, the media will tell us.
But this over-simplification obscures the heart of the matter: that citizens are not only opposing the war but are struggling for a way to deal with America’s present deeper crisis.
A former advisor to Lieberman, quoted in a recent article in The New Republic, explains why rank-and-file Democrats are furious with Lieberman but not with his fellow war-supporter, Senator Biden: “Here’s somebody [Biden] who voted for the war, continues to say that we should be there, but is absolutely critical of Bush and how he handled it. And so, as a result, he gets a pass. It’s how Lieberman talks about the war that people can’t stand. He comes across as not necessarily being pro-war but being pro-Bush.”
So it’s not ultimately about the war, and we must not allow ourselves or the public to be otherwise persuaded. It’s about this particular president and all the damage his regime is inflicting on America. It’s Lieberman’s being a help and a support for the Bush presidency that’s given rise to this grassroots rage against him.
By rejecting Lieberman, Connecticut’s grassroots Democrats are seeking to send a message to their party about how appalled they are at this Bush presidency, and thus also at any Democrat who does not understand how profound a threat this regime is to all they hold dear.
The same Democrats who oppose this war are also, and most fundamentally, appalled by the dark and dangerous nature of this regime that now rules our country.
They are appalled by the power grab, and the dismantling of the Constitution and the assault on the rule of law.
They are appalled by the debasing of our national discourse by this regime’s shamelessly deceitful and manipulative tactics.
They are appalled by the Swiftboating of anyone who stands against them, the smearing of opponents from John McCain to John Murtha.
They are appalled at the scent of fascism, and they worry about the future of our democracy.
They are appalled by the use of so much power to engorge those at the very top at the expense of everyone else, but especially of the most vulnerable.
They are appalled by their great nation throwing its weight around like an arrogant bully, making us increasingly feared and hated even by old friends.
This is the president to which Lieberman has lent his voice and his prestige as a former Democratic nominee for the vice-presidency, thus helping to legitimize this destructive regime.
The opposition to the war in Iraq is part of this, but it is also a way of bringing the larger picture into focus. For even the Iraq war is not just the Iraq war. It’s also a manifestation of the evils and the defects of the whole regime.
The Bushites lied us into this war. Thus this war is also emblematic of the systematic dishonesty of this administration.
The Bushites showed a contempt for international law both in the way they drove toward war and in their subsequent indifference to legally justifying their invasion once the supposed WMDs proved non-existent. The war in Iraq is therefore representative of the general lawlessness of this regime.
The war in Iraq also transformed the image of America in the world from a flawed but mostly trustworthy leader into a dangerous bully, with the populations of even our closest traditional allies coming to see the United States as the kind of ruthless power from which we used to be known for protecting the world. So the Iraq war also exemplifies the ways that this Bushite regime has betrayed America’s basic values.
In their arrogant over-estimation of their understanding, the Bushites failed to listen to experts about what success would require in Iraq. Their catastrophic botching of the post-invasion job, therefore, epitomizes the larger pattern of ignorance and arrogance and incompetence that has made a mess of so much else besides Iraq.
But, judging from their coverage of Lamont’s primary challenge to Lieberman, the media will announce to the country, after Lieberman is presumably rejected, that the Democratic grassroots are simply anti-war.
Some may assume that this simplification and distortion just reflect an innocent cluelessness on the part of our media. But this distortion fits too well with so many other “failures” of the media.
For one thing, the mainstream corporate media have systematically played down the story of the extraordinary nature of this Bush presidency. Here we have a regime that has taken the United States faster and further down the road to fascism than many of us would ever have thought possible. And the corporate media have virtually “missed” this story –one of the biggest in American history.
And so now they see the antipathy toward Lieberman as being an “anti-war” vote, not an expression of profound alarm about the transformation of America now being wrought by dark forces.
This distortion by the media serves the Bushites in another way as well: Construing the message simply as “anti-war” plays nicely into Karl Rove’s attempt to transform the Bushites’ most conspicuous failure into a club to beat the Democrats.
If the Democrats’ opposition to this disastrous war can be squeezed into the old “anti-war” frame –in which the Republicans can characterize the Democrats as wimpy doves, as “cut-and-runners,” as subverters of American honor—then the Republicans might yet again turn their catastrophe into yet another fear-based mid-term election victory.
“Single-issue” Democrats dumping Lieberman merely over the war would feed into that story-line.
But explaining the real meaning of this voter rage against Lieberman would help expose the Iraq war as the devastating political liability for the Bushites that it deserves to be, and it makes the war issue safer for the Democrats.
When the war is presented as the fraud that it is, as the fruit of lies and arrogance and incompetence that it is, as one mess among many created by a presidency that has betrayed America’s trust as well as its oath of office, then the repudiation of the war becomes a matter of protecting our national honor, not of abandoning it.
Perhaps most importantly, in rejecting Lieberman, the Democratic voters of Connecticut would be expressing not only their anger at Lieberman for actively helping the Bush administration, but also their deep frustration with their party leaders for failing to stand up boldly against the Bushites.
Millions of Democrats around the country applauded when Senator Feingold came forward with his resolution to censure the president for his clearly illegal conduct. But then they were bitterly disappointed when the rest of the party ran away from that resolution, allowing that little movement toward truth-telling to evaporate.
The Congressional Democrats’ cravenness in the face of the Bush administration’s crimes and lies has been the source of enormous angst and consternation among their constituents for some time. And until now all the grassroots efforts to get the attention of the national Democrats and to stiffen their spines have been largely unavailing.
But now comes this Connecticut uprising. Through this grassroots repudiation of a powerful Democratic Senator, the rank-and-file Democrats of that state are sending a message to the national party in the language that politicians best understand.
That message is not to be “doves” about this war so much as it is to be hawks about reining in this dangerous regime and hawks about preserving our constitutional democracy.
America needs for the national Democratic Party to understand and to heed that message.
This entry was posted on Sunday, August 6th, 2006 at 1:45 pm and is filed under Articles. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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MIKE MALLOY - 1/20/05
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