Culture, Politics

Republicans Tacitly Endorse Joe

Hawkish Democrats Say “No!”
In a brilliant move, the Republicans are declining to endorse Connecticut’s Republican senatorial candidate Alan Schlesinger, but according to White House press secretary Tony Snow, are instead endorsing “the democratic process” in CT generally.  Since it can be safely assumed that the President of the U.S. of A. would publicly support “the democratic process” even when he has a preference of candidates, this endorsement only of Connecticut’s general “democratic process” without a stated candidate preference is clearly a signal to Republicans that voting for Lieberman is fine by him, even preferable. The Republican National Committe is doing the same.
Now, no one can fault the Republicans for seeking to divide and conquer their opponents. 
And certainly, there are plenty of reasons for hawkish Democrats to be concerned with their party’s continually troublesome far-Left flank.   
But Lieberman is not our hero.  Even beyond his support of Bush in this war, he has been problematic.  Not because of the reasons the far-Left offered, but because of why TNR says so.

He has supported capital-gains tax cuts, ultra-loose financial regulations and the crucial vote on the grotesque bankruptcy bill. He has an almost pathological need to be liked by the far right.
Above all, he has maddeningly failed to acknowledge just how badly the Iraq war has turned out, which is different from insisting that we have to fix the mess we created. After all, many hawkish Democrats such as Senator Joe Biden of Delaware supported the war and don’t want to retreat but fully acknowledge President Bush’s catastrophic management of the occupation.
Lieberman’s persona has therefore tainted his admirable foreign policy instincts with his un-admirable domestic and political ones […]Still, the Lieberman rationale held together, just barely, as long as he was fighting the good fight within the Democratic Party. But now that he’s running as an independent, the last pillars of that rationale have crumbled. 

Even for hawkish Democrats, Lieberman has long been suspect.  But now, by dismissing (inexplicably, even before the primary took place) the wishes of Democratic voters, he has turned into our greatest foe, as he is currently the most powerful advocate that there is no place for us in the Democratic Party.
He no longer deserves our support. 
Now he deserves our full wrath. 

13 thoughts on “Republicans Tacitly Endorse Joe

  1. So, now the Republicans are endorsing the “democratic process” in Connecticut, rather than their own Party’s nominee. That sounds so noble, like a great deal of the transparent idiocy that flows on tap from Party headquarters. Funny, Republicans were considerably less enamored of the democratic process when they denounced homeowners in Greenwich, Connecticut as hardcore leftwing extremists, or when the Snarling Savage made decent human beings shudder with disgust by claiming that Lamont’s election would provide encouragement to “al-Qaeda types.”
    It seems to me it’s way past time progressives learn to ignore the lie that flushing Douchebag Joe down the toilet was the work of the “far Left” of the party. Bullshit. I can recall no figure in American political life since William Jennings Bryant that could match Lieberman’s bloated self-importance, his whining sense of entitlement and smug moral condescension, and the voters of Connecticut knew exactly what they were doing when they told him to take his “conscience of the Senate” shtick and shove it up his sanctimonious ass.
    There are two especially pernicious pieces of reactionary propaganda concerning the visceral loathing and disgust Lieberman inspires in so many.
    Democrats’ opposition to Lieberman is based on some type of irrational hatred
    This is a variant of the widely touted – and notoriously stupid – Bush Syndrome (or something of the sort), which holds that Democratic opposition to honorable patriots like Bush and Lieberman is motivated by malice and personal hatred, rather than a reasoned objection to their policies. After all, decent Republicans, like greasy bagman Ken Mehlman, would never stoop so low as to insult the dignity of the President of the United States, or flout the rules of civility by participating in personal attacks on their political opponents.
    Oh, except maybe for a few tiny examples of demagoguery and mob hatred that would make Goebbels blush with envy. In place of the Left’s irrational hatred for Bush, there is the simple justice of the years Republicans spent sniffing the fumes from Bill Clinton’s crotch, or accusing him of murdering Vince Foster, looting Whitewater, and raping Paula Jones. Then there’s the Republican mantra to “support the troops,” except, of course, when the troops reject the policies of bloodthirsty monsters like Richard Perle (and, oh yeah, Ben Stein). Then it’s fair game to impugn the patriotism and courage of crippled veterans like Max Cleland, or spread rumors about the sanity of fellow Republicans like p.o.w. John McCain. Most of all, there’s the defining moment when the Republican Party fully embraced Nixon’s “Southern Strategy.” Reagan kicked off the 1980 campaign by squatting on the graves of three civil rights workers in Philadelphia, Mississippi, telling all of America that, notwithstanding its position on specific “issues,” the Republican Party would always remain the spiritual home for those whose lives are rooted in a seething hatred of Blacks, queers, liberals, feminists, and assorted other ideological and racial enemies. That is precisely why Giuliani remains the darling of the Republican Right, notwithstanding his record of support for abortion and homosexual rights, and a personal history of profligate fornication and adultery. Despite these trivial peccadilloes, no elected official has ever shown a greater enthusiasm for turning the United States into a full-fledged police state, or for encouraging cops to beat and kill Blacks with impunity. Any sin is forgivable for Republicans as long as a candidate is sufficiently enthusiastic about telling Blacks to go fuck themselves, a task which no one pursues with greater vigor than Giuliani.
    The Republican Party has declared war on the democracy of the United States, led by a band of vicious baboons that uses the Bill of Rights to wipe their asses every time they squat down to shit. They are real live war criminals that should spend years in prison, and their oh-so-earnest whining about “partisanship” is just one more example of crude reactionary propaganda via Fox News and the New York Post. For Republicans, “partisanship” is limited to calling Bush and Cheney bad names, while impugning the integrity and patriotism of their political opponents is perfectly acceptable conduct. The Republicans can shed crocodile tears about the lack of civility all they want, but the single agenda Democrats do – and should – care about most is insisting on accountability for the gang of thugs that is drowning this country in a rancid sewer of hate, fear, and incompetence.
    This record puts the Republicans creepy moralizing about “irrational hatred” into some perspective.
    Except for pimping himself out like a two-dollar whore for the Iraq war, Lieberman votes with the Democratic Party a lot.
    First of all, it doesn’t make a damn bit of difference what Harry Reid or Hillary Clinton or Ben Nelson does; the voters in Connecticut are fully entitled to dump Lieberman for his smug, self-serving support of the Neo-cons’ warmongering adventure in Iraq. More importantly, the rest of us don’t give a flying fuck whether Lieberman’s voting record is more “liberal” than everyone else in the Senate. He’s a sanctimonious, self-aggrandizing opportunist, whose status as a traitor was cemented when he rubbed that flaccid, basset-hound face against the smirking lips of the Imbecile-in-Chief. He’s not merely a passive sympathizer in the Republican war on American democracy, but a willing and active collaborator, having provided cover for the Republicans’ criminal schemes for years. He started with his nauseatingly self-righteous participation in the Republican witchhunt against Clinton, which he followed up with such stunts as cozying up to professional nigger-hater Bill Bennett, voting to feed on the rotting corpse of Terry Schiavo, and, finally, providing support – and legitimacy – to Republican warmongering in Iraq.
    Given his record, it was thoroughly predictable that Lieberman would become a filthy traitor, who would far prefer to put another Republican in the Senate than in any way impede his beady-eyed, insatiable lust for power. Just as when he previously refused to relinquish his Senate seat while running for Vice-President, Lieberman once again manifested his willingness to stick a knife into the backs of his own constituents, who, it will be recalled, were urged to support Joe in his hour of need because of his decades of loyal service and dedication to the Democratic Party.
    Accordingly, it’s my expectation – and deepest hope – that as Election Day approaches, more and more Democrats from across the country will contribute the political and financial resources needed to put a stake through the heart of Lieberman’s political career. When it’s all said and done, Douchebag Joe can contemplate how agonizingly close he came to becoming the first Jewish President of the United States. Instead, the only presidential residence he and Hadaaaaaaassah might ever occupy is the one at the Hartford Community College.

  2. David Smith,
    We are, at least to some degree, on the same page about Lieberman, so let’s focus on what we don’t agree on.
    I have to disagree with your comments on Giuliani, admittedly, a most divisive figure, not between Democrats and Republicans, but between more conservative Democrats and Left-wing ones.
    Clearly his popularity among Republicans and others is in part because of his heroism during 9/11, when our president was listening to goat stories and hiding in a bunker. He was our national leader, not Bush or the VP.
    Additionally, the Republicans know they aren’t going to win with another right-winger. and they fear H. Clinton. They are willing to settle for a (relative) liberal and even an urbanist rather than have her leading the country. And unnlike MCain (another option), he doesn’t antagonize them. He just does his own thing.
    Look at it from their shoes. This is not coming from mutual hate. It is coming from desperation. They would much rather have a pro-suburban candidate than the likes of a guy who prefers to take (mediocre) pictures of the NY skyline and listen to opera. He isn’t really one of them. He reaks of New York.
    But they are desperate. And they accept that.

  3. DK-
    I think your thumbs-up for Lieberman’s loss is shortsighted and something you’ll regret. Granted, Lieberman is not exactly your cup of tea. But if you don’t want the loony Left taking over your party, it would be wise to hang onto any allies you have in the party. If you think that your faction can beat the Lefties without the help of the centrists (and that’s what Lieberman is, notwithstanding one TNR article), you’re mistaken.
    Re Giuliani, I don’t entirely disagree (and in any case, compromising to get someone electable in the race shows the Republicans have their heads on straight). But I think you overstate. Consider this: a President has the most power in foreign policy decisions; next, in economic decisions; and lastly, in social policy (which is often determined by state and local governments, courts, and individuals), except with respect to nominating judges. Also consider that foreign policy has in recent years become of paramount importance. Seen this way, Giuliani is not such a compromise for the conservative base. His foreign policy is as hawkish as they come, and his economic policies have always been fairly conservative. The only possible drawback is that a President Giuliani might want to nominate socially liberal judges. I suspect that part of the deal would be that Giuliani gets the support of the conservative base if he chooses only mutually acceptable candidates (people like Roberts, I would suspect). This deal is workable.
    I wish everyone in the country could read David Smith’s post above. You can almost see the spit flying. I loved the comparison to Goebbels (a negative comparison, yet!), and use of the term “filthy traitor” for Lieberman. Smith, when you see a dog foaming at the mouth, you don’t reach over and pet it.

    Your impassioned piece is the most poetic work I’ve ever seen in any commentary, anywhere, ever. Breath-taking beauty.
    This is a print-out, and a Thursday class-read.

  5. J,
    I guess where we disagree is on our perception of the Republican focus. I agree that many Republicans might not mind socially moderate positions, but some certainly do, and that’s where it gets interesting and telling.
    Take Pat Robertson, who is actually a supporter of Rudy, and certainly is concerned with social issues. I don’t really think he is more concerned with anything else. Rather, he is comparing a potential loss to Hilary with the one guy (besides McCain, who he hates) who can beat her.
    If Robertson thought he could get a real social-conservative into office, I don’t think he would be backing Giuliani.
    As for Lieberman — honestly, J, if he hadn’t spat in the face of primary voters before the election, I really don’t think we would be debating this issue. I just can’t justify his behavior. And believe me, the whole thing–including his loss–gives me no pleasure. I even went to the same shul as the guy when I lived in DC. I think he should take responsiblilty. He’s a decent man, despite his faults. It’s tragic. But he really self-destructed, and he lost.

  6. DK:
    As I said, re Giuliani, I only partially disagree. You’re probably right about Robertson, but he’s not the average conservative. The average conservative, I think, gives somewhat more weight to foreign policy (and is sane). And it’s likely that part of the reason Robertson can live with Giuliani is that he realizes that a deal can be cut minimizing the damage Giuliani might do on social issues. I myself am a social conservative, and entirely apart from the electability issue, I don’t fear Giuliani’s attitudes toward social issues that much (and I suspect that if Giuliani wins, there won’t be enough valium in the world for the Ahmadinejads and Kims and Castros of the world).
    As for Lieberman, I wasn’t suggesting you had any personal problem with him. I just think that despite what Lieberman may have done recently, Lamont’s victory was a terrible blow for your political position. I was hoping Lieberman would win, because I don’t want to see one of America’s two major parties slide into insanity, but at least for me, there’s the big consolation prize in watching the Republicans use the election as a club against the Democrats (and rightly so).
    Scoop Jackson is rolling in his grave.

  7. I don’t want to see one of America’s two major parties slide into insanity
    J, your concern would be touching, were it not such obvious crocodile tears. Did you express the same concern for the Republican party when, for instance, voters not only nominated but elected Tom Coburn as Senator from Oklahoma? He’s the man who was famous for warning that lesbianism was “that lesbianism is “so rampant in some of the schools in southeast Oklahoma that they’ll only let one girl go to the bathroom.” Sanity indeed! Did you post about how concerned you were for one of America’s two major parties to actually send this man to the Senate?

  8. No crocodile tears here. I would rather risk a Republican/ conservative loss to a sane liberal than take a chance that a loony Leftist win (even though the liberal has far greater odds of beating the conservative than the Leftist).
    As for me posting about Coburn, perhaps you’ve noticed that this blog is called “Jewschool”, not “J’s Blog”. I respond to the topic at hand, occasionally. In fact, I wasn’t too happy with Coburn. But the Republicans are in far less danger of becoming more like Coburn than the Democrats are of becoming more like George McGovern, Screamin’ Howie Dean, Chappaquiddick Man, or the Kos crowd.

  9. I didn’t make any direct comparisons between individuals, as would be clear if you read my post. And I refer to the recent and current Howard Dean, who is no centrist. (His earlier record does in fact indicate centrism, and you can easily argue that his more recent shift leftward is just opportunism, but all references are to current status unless otherwise indicated.)
    As for how far to the right I am, here’s my standard answer: I’m as far to the right as I need to be. (And for those to the right of me, just substitute the word “right” for “left”.)

  10. I agree with J.
    Dean “was” a centrist during the 2004 presidential primary. I actually supported him at that time. I thought Kuccinich was too far to the left and Kerry, well, Kerry was just plain weak. I still ended up voting for Kerry though.
    But, today, Dean has transformed into a mouthpiece for the loony-left wing of the Democratic Party. I don’t think the man actually believes the rhetoric but I do think his advisors and other consultants are convinced it will win elections. I’m not convinced. Unlike those who think we need to appeal to the loony-lefy (I mean the “progressive” base) I think we need to woo centrist voters. They are who is going to determine who wins or looses. I’m not sure how I’ll vote in the next presidential election. I’ve never voted for a Republican in any election–local, state or national–but I do not dig the crackpot left wing and they appear to be gaining traction.
    The Republicans are in a similar, but not identical, position with their vocal nationalist and social conservative bases. The former are pushing the Republican Party in an increasingly xenophobic (and anti-business!) position while the latter are clamoring for further restrictions on family planning and women’s autonomy.
    Simply stated, activists are unfortunately moving the two centrist parties towards the extremes. The rhetoric is as inaccurate and simplistic as it is caustic. One can hear the causticity on liberal and conservative media outlets. For example, the left decries George W. Bush as a “fascist” while the right tars Kerry and Kennedy with the “communist” brush.
    Just read the inane comments at this site coming from ideologues on both sides of the spectrum and you’ll see what I mean.

  11. Miriam; thank you, very much. Really. The combination of your observations with being called a rabid dog by J renders this the most gratifying response I’ve ever elicited on Jewschool. Incidentally, I came across an article on a media-watch blog I’d never heard of before called Cursor. I haven’t read it carefully yet, but it struck me as a thoughtful and substantive explication of proto-fascism on the far Right, and I thought you’d be interested. (
    DK, with respect to Giuliani, your analysis strikes me as perfectly valid realpolitik and plausible as far as it goes, at least regarding some mainstream Republicans. But I think it fails to account for the Giuliani phenomenon among a specific demographic, i.e., the “values” voters of the Christian Right, including such leaders as Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, James Dobson, Donald Wildmon, et al. Let’s be charitable and call them “idealists” instead of ideologues, even if their idealism consists of such policies as blocking the distribution of a vaccine that prevents women from developing cervical cancer. In any case, matters such as prohibition of abortion and persecution of homosexuals have never been treated by Christian Conservatives as political objectives subject to compromise, but absolute moral imperatives – comparable in importance to observance of Shabbat and glatt kosher laws for Orthodox Jews – to be pursued in holy crusades. Equally important is a candidate’s public embrace of such moral values as they pertain to his personal life. Giuliani, of course, is a serial adulterer, one that makes Clinton look like a monk sworn to a life of celibacy and contemplation. In short, the notion that such unyielding fanatics have embraced Giuliani because they’d rather elect a “centrist” than a Democrat is laughable.
    It’s so gratifying to have J and so many other reactionaries generously inform us that flushing Douchebag Joe down the toilet is the absolute worst thing we can do to enhance the prospects of a Democratic victory in the midterm elections. “Lamont’s victory was a terrible blow for your political position. I was hoping Lieberman would win, because I don’t want to see one of America’s two major parties slide into insanity.” Far be it from me to doubt their sincerity, but it does seem just a tiny bit surprising, given the scarcity of prior evidence that Republican’s had ever given a rat’s turd about the survival – much less the electoral prosperity – of the Democratic Party. Funny, you’d think if they really believed dumping Joe would be such a disaster for the Democrats, they’d most likely just keep their yaps shut and laugh all the way to the ballot box.
    But J explains his concern as follows:
    But the Republicans are in far less danger of becoming more like Coburn than the Democrats are of becoming more like George McGovern, Screamin’ Howie Dean, Chappaquiddick Man, or the Kos crowd.
    First, it’s fairly evident that the continuing obsession with Chappaquiddick is more mental illness than political position, and that those who wallow in it should be sharing a padded cell with Ken Starr and the Clinton crotch sniffers. In any case, it’s rather curious that a drunken car accident is deemed far more morally culpable than, oh, say…. getting loaded and shooting a hunting buddy in the face. Finally, Mister Goat made the following salient point:
    And the fact that you would compare Howard Dean, who is frankly a centrist, to Tom Coburn shows us just how far to the right you are.
    How about if we add the tiniest bit of factual analysis to the equation? Here’s a brief list of prominent Republican office-holding extremists on the national level, which, just for argument’s sake, excludes such prominent, though arguably peripheral, Republican hate-mongers as Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, Bill Bennett, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Donald Wildmon, Roy Moore, and the like. Off the top of my head, a list of prominent extremist Republican office holders includes the following:
    Tom Coburn (principal hatred, homosexuality); Rick Santorum (principal hatred, homosexuality); Bill Frist (committing medical malpractice re: Terry Schiavo on the Senate floor, feeding off her corpse for political purposes); Karl Rove (breathing); Tom DeLay (K-Street; influence peddling, equal opportunity hatred); Newt Gingrich (Clinton impeachment, served his wife with divorce papers as she awoke from cancer surgery); Trent Lott (nostalgia for slavery); George Allen (told a South Asian campaign worker “hey porch monkey, welcome to America), Donald Rumsfeld (negligent homicide of thousands of U.S. Troops; making U.S. more vulnerable to terrorism); James Sensenbrenner (Clinton impeachment; furiously opposed to comprehensive immigration reform in order to exploit wetback hatred for“law-enforcement-only” approach); John Ashcroft (lost senate election to a dead man; Patriot Act; main hatred: abortion rights; nostalgia for slavery); Dick Cheney (impugning patriotism of entire state of Connecticut; human sacrifice and cannibalism); George W. Bush (the most manifestly unfit human being, morally and intellectually, ever to sit on a White House toilet, much less in the Oval Office).
    As per Mister Goat’s point, for Democratic extremists we’ve got Howard Dean, Ted Kennedy and . . . George McGovern! How about Eugene Debs? Or Thomas Paine? In any case, I wonder if J or WEVS1or anyone else can identify the Democratic office holders and their policies that are as remotely extremist as those on the Republican list.
    Finally, J saves his best criticism for last:
    I wish everyone in the country could read David Smith’s post above. You can almost see the spit flying. . . .Smith, when you see a dog foaming at the mouth, you don’t reach over and pet it.
    This is a perfect illustration of the most specious, dishonest, and gutless form of “argument,” there is, i.e., the one that needs no facts or examples, since its validity is “self-evident,” and needs no explication. Likewise, WEVS1 says,
    Simply stated, activists are unfortunately moving the two centrist parties towards the extremes. The rhetoric is as inaccurate and simplistic as it is caustic. One can hear the causticity on liberal and conservative media outlets….Just read the inane comments at this site coming from ideologues on both sides of the spectrum and you’ll see what I mean.
    “Ideologue?” If that the same as “has principles,” then I plead guilty. To the best of my recollection, I was the only one on this blog to denounce McKinney AND Lieberman with equal passion, and so the ideologue epithet rings particularly false. Once again, we’re supposed to accept this judgment without a single illustration, simply because it’s so “self-evident.”
    For someone who spends so much time discussing his liberal bona fides, WEVS1 references the “crackpot left wing” and cites the ostensible virtues of “centrism” with remarkable frequency. It’s hard to imagine a stance less commendable than centrism when it comes to such issues as the Patriot Act, prosecuting a futile and unnecessary war, embracing torture, and flushing the U.S. Constitutional down the toilet. As a rather prominent conservative once noted, “Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice. . . .”

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