This is Politics, Folks. Don't Take it Personally

It's clear my favorite primary candidate, John Edwards, is really getting under the skin of some Clinton supporters here in the MyDD community.

That's not surprising.  He's making sharp rhetorical jabs aimed right at Clinton.  And no one likes to see their favorite candidate on the receiving end of sharp jabs.  Especially when they're coming from a strong competitor. Edwards could win the nomination; the Clinton supporters know this.  Gravel could make jabs all day long, and no one would give a darn.

But try not to take these jabs personally.  Because, really, he is not making it personal.

Every single negative remark Edwards has made with regard to Sen. Clinton has been of a political nature; he has not made any negative remarks, ever, about Hillary Clinton the wife, the mom, the daughter, the human being.

For example, he charges that big corporations have far too much influence in Washington and that Clinton, by refusing to distance herself from corporate lobbyists, contributes to the problem. (In his day, Franklin Roosevelt used the very same sort of rhetoric.) He contends that because Bush has done so much damage to the reputation of the U.S. and the White House, that straight-talk is going to be crucial to restoring credibility in the next administration (Jimmy Carter used similar rhetoric when he was running in the first post-Watergate election.)  Now this type of political rhetoric can come across as moralizing and can sound harsh - and it was not appreciated by some Democrats back in FDR's day or back in Carter's day. I can sympathize with those Democrats; maybe I'll even argue their side in my next diary! :-)

Yes, Edwards is using some harsh rhetoric. He is not playing pattycake here.  But it is strictly in the realm of politics.  Don't take it personally.

Chin up, Clinton supporters! Your favorite candidate is doing fabulously. She's smart and tough and everybody knows it. Enjoy the fact that we have a field of strong competitors.

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What a REAL Democrat acts like!

Want to see a real American, a real person, a real human being? How about a REAL Democrat with REAL BALLS and a spine?

Do ya wanna?

Check this out:

Jimmy Carter Confronts Sudan Officials

Former President Jimmy Carter confronted Sudanese security services on a visit to Darfur Wednesday, shouting "You don't have the power to stop me!" at some who blocked him from meeting refugees of the conflict.

The 83-year-old Carter....

83... 83... 83... geez if we could get these 'youngsters' in Congress and running for PRESIDENT to have the same "Don't Fuck With Me or these people" attitude and courage, then maybe WE could really bring back Our Constitution and put some NEO-CONS In JAIL!


"You can't go. It's not on the program!" the local security chief, who only gave his first name as Omar, yelled at Carter, who is in Darfur as part of a delegation of respected international figures known as "The Elders."

"We're going to anyway!" an angry Carter retorted as a crowd began to gather. "You don't have the power to stop me."

Look at who else has the similar courage of President Jimmy Carter:

Carter's traveling companions, billionaire businessman Richard Branson and Graca Machel, the wife of former South African President Nelson Mandela...

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The Power of (Republican) Myth

It's amazing how Republican talking points eventually become conventional wisdom, spouted not just by boobs in the media, or by your Republican co-workers, but quite often by Democrats.

Case in point was a recent MyDD thread I wandered into where someone stated, matter-of-factly, that Jimmy Carter was "weak on defense." 

My point isn't, of course, that reasonable people can't make a case against some defense policy(ies) taken during the Carter Administration, or can't intelligently compare and contrast the whole of the Carter Administration's foreign policy with other administrations, and try to fairly assign some notion of an overall grade.  What is wrong and unfair and unfortunately straight out of the Republican playbook is to make sweeping, unsubstantiated charges of "weakness".  

As a matter of fact, though I think Carter would primarily like to be remembered for his great efforts in diplomacy - he is credited with shepherding the historic peace settlement between Egypt and Israel - his administration also increased defense spending, reversing the trend of the previous two Republican administrations.  And the most dramatic failure of the Carter presidency centered around an incredibly bold hostage rescue mission undertaken by the newly formed Delta Force - a mission which some folks in hindsight argue was bound to fail - but that was clearly not the attitude of the men who undertook the mission, nor their commander-in-chief.  Murphy's Law wreaked havoc with that mission, but the Administration's diplomatic efforts eventually did succeed in freeing all the embassy hostages.

It is true that rotten luck can dramatically affect history. If not for a hard-to-read ballot design in Palm Beach County, George W. Bush would not have become president, the Twin Towers might still be standing, and there would certainly have been no unwarranted invasion of Iraq. We know a Democratic president would not have shut down U.N. weapons inspections, would not have said "bring it on" to terrorists.  How do we know this?  Because Democrats (Zell Miller excepted) generally don't act like batshit crazy cowboys.  That's not a sign of weakness - it's a sign of maturity. (Compare the sobriety of almost any Democrat you can think of, to George W. Bush's idiotic bravado, John McCain's recent singsong "joking" about bombing Iran, or Ronald Reagan's joking into a live mike about bombing Russia.)

So, I say to my fellow Democrats, don't help to perpetuate Republican myths, help to extinguish them!  Here are a few more examples... Myth: Republicans are good for the economy. Reality: historically, all economic measures (productivity, unemployment, the stock market, inflation) tend to do better under Democratic administrations.  Myth: Republicans reduce the size of government.  Reality: Historically, Federal spending, budget deficits, and increases in the Federal workforce tend to be greater under Republican administrations. Myth:Democratic anti-poverty programs don't work, as Johnson's "War on Poverty" proved.  Reality: the Johnson years saw the biggest reduction of poverty in the last 50 years. Historically, each year on average under Democratic presidents, the number of people in America living below the poverty line has dropped by over 800,000, while each year on average under Republican presidents, the number of people in America living below the poverty line has increased by over 400,000. (For source material debunking these Republican myths, see this page on my website.)

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US is a Rogue State & Violator of Human Rights

The tyrannical Bush regime is worse than an embarrassment now that our nation has been branded evil , inhumane , and even a danger to civilization itself. I was saddened but not shocked to find out that our country is now the rogue state used to represent the worst case example of abuse of prisoners during presentations at the United Nations Prison and Probation Officer Course.
When I was in high school we had a President who was a true statesman and defender of the quality of life and rights of people everywhere on earth his name was Jimmy Carter. The only way we can begin to heal the deep wounds inflicted upon our traumatized nation by the NEO-CONS is returning to Jimmy Carter's human rights doctrine as the mainstay of our foreign policy. I miss the days when our country had a leader who could walk down the middle of Paris with the French President and was cheered and greeted as a friend.

United States of America President Jimmy Carter and French President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing

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Bill Clinton a Reluctant Drug Warrior ?

On Sep 6, 1989 Rep. Don Edwards, D-CA said that if then President George H. W. Bush's proposals for punishing drug users and expanding drug testing in the work place were passed into law then  ``American would become a police state.``

Well it passed almost unanimously I might add and Edwards proved to be a visionary because we do indeed live in a Police State. In fact it's far worse today than what the first President Bush pushed through 17 years ago. Due to the hysterical climate created by the Reagan-Bush drug war CA Rep. Edwards was one of the very few voices of reason left in Congress at the time.

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