Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"Pick Your Poison" Politics

Dearest Kathleen Reardon @ Huffpo (in full):
Have voters traded one dose of political poison for another? There is good reason to wonder if that's what they inadvertently accomplished last month.

Just days after Democrats won majorities in the House and Senate, James Carville was demeaning Howard Dean, and Rahm Emmanuel was being elevated in his place. Certain members of the press pilloried Nancy Pelosi for backing John Murtha -- the man whose personal conviction and courage largely made victory possible.

Murtha may not have been the best choice for majority leader - but he deserves far better than he got.

If this vicious jockeying is the beginning of the anti-antiwar Clinton contingent's attempt to body-check real Democrats, then I have to wonder about Sen. Clinton's intentions. It's been argued that she's wisely playing the middle to deprive her enemies of a target any earlier than necessary before the Presidential election season. But if that stance is merely a diversion while her henchmen take out - one by one -- the Democrats to whom Americans have responded and for whom they voted, then the gloves must come off.

Pathological politics, after all, is rarely cured without a total transition of power. Even when a substantial transition occurs, there is a risk that some of the new people capable of improving the situation may be inclined to consolidate their newly acquired status by getting rid of uncooperative others. If "throwing the bums out" has only set the stage for another bunch to come in, then we have merely traded one type of poisonous political pathology for another.

It will take some time to learn which Democratic factions care more about their own power than about the people who voted them in. But the Clinton campaign should realize what the recent election proved -- that the American people are watching. Should Hillary Clinton chose to foster or tolerate Democrats being Murtha-ized so that she and her cohorts can take the White House in 2008, she'll be demonstrating one of the personal qualities that millions of people voted against last month.

Moreover, if those same voters see Senator Clinton delaying the termination of the Iraq war, turning a blind eye to corruption and cozying up to the current corporate elite in order to achieve her Presidential ambitions - in short, if they start feeling duped by her coterie of the party leadership -- she might as well fold up her board. Because I suspect that a good many people, like me, who've levied few criticisms to date, are going to call "game over.""
good health, and best wishes, and thanks for everything, kathleen.


profmarcus said...

there's no doubt in MY mind which way hillary will turn...

LeeB said...

No doubt in mine, either. :-(

Kathleen said...

AMEN, poison is poison, no matter what form it takes.

If you can't take it, don't dish it out.