Wednesday, April 13, 2005

John Edwards: "The Natural"

photo credit: Chris America

The Natural:
John Edwards six months later

Mark Shields says that he believes John Edwards will face some obstacles should he decide to make a run for the presidency in 2008 because Political History, itself, offers no supporting evidence to encourage Edwards. Yet, I sense that Shields is saying, without actually articulating his case for Edwards in 2008, that the man he sees as "The Natural" should not be discouraged.

Shields says:

"If politics were like baseball, the 2004 scouting report on John Edwards would have branded him a Natural, endowed with a remarkable ability to connect personally with crowds of strangers almost anywhere, superior stamina, a quick mind and an exceptional ability to express himself in emotionally persuasive language...."

"Nearly 70 years ago, FDR told Americans: "The measure of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, but whether we provide enough to those who have too little."

John Edwards offers a different wrinkle: "We have a moral responsibility to help those around us who are struggling. ... How we treat people in their time of their need is the test of our character." To those struggling, "we see you, we hear you, we embrace you, we are going to lift you up."

It would be a lot different message from the last winning Democratic presidential campaign, which championed school uniforms and the V-chip for television sets..."
Shields says he believes, "absent 9-11, John Edwards would have been his party's presidential nominee" in 2004.

In Today's News

In Today's News


Ron Brynaert is reporting on Ari Berman, who writes The Daily Outrage column at The Nation Website. Berman wrote a powerful article about two 16-year-old Muslim girls - known as A. & T. - who have been detained as "would-be suicide bombers" at a detention center in Leesport, Pennsylvania. No evidence has been offered to prove the bureau's claim and, judging from law enforcement officials quoted in the New York Post, there probably isn't any. The column is titled "Young And Arrested". The column led to another piece by Peter Rothberg called "Detained Without Charge", co-written by Mark Hatch-Miller.



It's time for Democratic leaders including, but not limited to DLC's Al From, Bruce Reed, Senator Joe Lieberman, and TNR writer Peter Beinart to quickly and firmly denounce the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC's) current use of Democrats' own past statements to further divide the Democratic party. Making a claim of being a "rank and file" Democrat means little when the ones claiming the "rank and file" title have been whipped soundly in both national and local elections for the past eight years. As much as we hate to admit it, Karl Rove has been responsible for heading up a strategic team to bring the GOP's own disparate groups together under one tent to win elections. Rove has also been crafty at using Democrats as GOP toolbox-hammers to chip away at the integrity of the Democratic party.

I found it hideously repulsive to learn, from Daily Kos, about the NRSC press release. They're using members of the Democratic party against their fellow Democrats while attacking and its relation to Congressional Democrats. It's time for Democrats to stand strong, together, in their ethical conviction.

An anonymous "senior Kerry campaign advisor's" negative statement toward is used in the NRSC memo. (Had it not been for the 3-million-strong MoveOn and its promotion of activism, John Kerry wouldn't have gotten nearly as many votes as he did).

The ever-divisive (and ever-wrong) Al From's DLC-negativity toward MoveOn is used by the NRSC. Al From called concerned blogger-citizens (like me - and I take it personally - ) "elites who sit in our basements all the time and play on our computers." I don't know about my fellow bloggers, but I work my fingers to the bone because I have serious concerns.

Al From has been an insulting and divisive character and it's time for him to SNAP-TO! The Democratic party must unite or ot will be killed by people like the ones at the NRSC who use these past statements to further divide us. They are afraid of Michael Moore because he understands and articulates just how successful the GOP activists have been in the past. He understands their game and would love to see Democrats beat them at this game. He is poised to inspire Democrats to be equally active in grassroots politics. This is nothing of which to be ashamed.

Who knows? It may be too late for Peter Beinart and Joe Lieberman and Al From to redeem themselves from being seen as pathetic hammerheads from the RNC toolbox, rather than as spokesmen and leaders for a united Democratic party. That's a damned shame. Perhaps it won't be too late, if the Beinarts and Froms come out and denounce their being used as tools to divide their party. We need to respect our differences and place a far greater value on our strength of conviction. If these "tools" cannot recognize and denounce their being used so blatantly, they should move completely out of the way of the Democrats who do wish to unite behind leaders who'll show they want and know how to unite and strengthen the party.

I, for one, will not sit back quietly and watch them all botch another election cycle. I will be willing to forgive and forget the fact that these Democrats have ridiculously and carelessly classified people like me as "basement-dwelling elite radicals" if they would only see how they are being used and denounce it at once. Let's take the lesson the NRSC doesn't want us to learn from this and, in the spirit of Michael Moore and activism - combined with dropping the DLC-ego at the door - try to work together to create a consistent and clear identity and message for the Democratic party.


According to Regime Change Iran, the USA plans to expand military presence in Azerbaijan 'to strike Iran'. According to Pravda, Donald Rumsfeld's recent trip to Azerbaijan was for two reasons: The first reason involves the transportation of the Caspian oil and the security of the Baku-Tbilisi- Ceyhan oil pipeline. The second reason involves the USA's interest in establishing mobile army bases on the territory of Azerbaijan, which is stipulated in the plan to re-deploy US troops in Europe and Asia.


At Taran Rampersad's site, I saw a couple of quotes which I thought were interesting:

"Democracy is the name we give the people whenever we need them."

— Marquis de Flers Robert and Arman de Caillavet


"A word in a dictionary is very much like a car in a mammoth motorshow
- full of potential, but temporarily inactive

— Anthony Burgess, author (1917-1993)

I found this quote, part of James Wolcott's recent post, as particularly meaningful:

"Infidelity does not consist in believing, or in disbelieving: it consists in professing to believe what he does not believe."

--Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

Robert Stribley's been busy writing fiction, but he took the time to blog about which tunes he thinks George W. Bush might have on his iPod.

Semidi raises our awareness about a totally unrealistic story popping up from the AP about how George Pataki is allegedly "narrowing the gap" against Eliot Spitzer in the race for New York State Governor. Maybe that'll give false hope to the GOP in New York and they won't feel that they have to pull Rudy Giuliani out of the box as Pataki's replacement. I don't think Spitzer is losing any sleep over it. I suppose, if the gap wasn't the size of the Grand Canyon, he might be. New York is a still a secure blue state and Pataki has worn out the trust moderate voters once had in him.

Wonkette has some links to last week's NPC "Who You Calling a Journalist?" conference.

At the North Carolina-based business blog Trade Street Journal, there is a link to the Greensboro News-Record's coverage of Roch Smith Jr's growing "101" network.

Outside the Beltway, which boasts a large "Anyone But Hillary" ad, points out a Marist Poll that says that adults polled in New York state would rather see Rudy, not Hillary, run for President in 2008. (Methodology: Telephone interviews to 705 registered New York voters, conducted on Apr. 4 and Apr. 5, 2005. Margin of error is 4 per cent.) Comments by readers of Outside the Beltway are skeptical, at best.
Here are two examples:

FYI, the same Marist poll had 51% of NY state registered voters saying they would definitely re-elect Hillary Clinton to the Senate and 56% rate the job she is doing as senator as excellent or good. 43% of voters rate the president’s job performance positively.

Posted by: Chris

Don’t underestimate the anger with which many women view Giuliani because of the messy way he conducted his divorce. I think he’d have a very hard time winning an election again.

Posted by: John

Freepers have posted (and discussed) the debate between Katrina vanden Heuvel, Michael Tomasky, and Peter Beinart regarding the present state of liberalism in America, and its future, which was originally printed in the NYT (March 6th). Sorry I'm so late with mentioning this one.


MSNBC - "The SouthCom inquiry and other prisoner-abuse investigations may derail President Bush's pending nomination of Pentagon general counsel William Haynes to a U.S. Court of Appeals seat in Richmond, Virginia."


David Hoffman, legal editor of Pravda, admits: "My name is David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda. And I am a loser."

I ask, "Who are the wise and who are the fools? Are the wise those who live long lives, acquiring material possessions through stealth, deceit and the exploitation of others while being trumpeted with sycophantic praise? Are the fools those who dare to struggle for a better world, thus spending their often too brief time on earth in suffering, hardship and frustration?

I do not know the answers. But I cannot help but think that thousands, perhaps millions, ask these same questions everyday.

The famed mathematician Descartes once said, "I think therefore I am." But in American society this motto has been transformed into: "To be one must conspicuously consume." So, in the eyes of the society I live in, I do not exist.

Of course invisibility is a fitting fate for a loser. But considering how low people will often sink in their quest to become "winners," perhaps being a loser is not so terrible after all.


Castro Talks About Pope John Paul
Note from LA Weekly:
"So many big names have passed away so quickly that people have taken to joking about it. When The Daily Show flashed an image of Fidel Castro honoring John Paul II, Jon Stewart’s comment was, “He’s next.”


Jesus Christ born in Ukraine