Tuesday, January 18, 2005

here's a little post about George and Dianne

ooh, yeah, life goes on ...

A word about Feinstein and her cronies: they are the Neville Chamberlain Democrats. They live in a dream of the past, a time when bipartisanship equaled statesmanship, and to be truly bipartisan meant you were a successful diplomat. Diplomacy is a fine quality that has been much belittled by the Bush Junta in recent years – and that’s the point. You’re not dealing with people who want to compromise. Mountbatten was a diplomat, because he negotiated with Nehru. Chamberlain was a fool, because he negotiated with the Axis. For a Democrat to be bipartisan today means to cooperate in one way only: You want to put your foot on my neck, and I’ll help you put it there.

The Neville Chamberlain Democrats don’t realize – or choose not to acknowledge - that true bipartisanship in Washington is dead, crushed by thugs like DeLay and Frist, and by Gingrich and Lott before them. Rule changes suppressing the rights of the minority in both houses of Congress are just one sign of this new spirit. Tom Daschle caved in to extremist demand after extremist demand, always protesting that he was “neither Democrat or Republican, just a patriotic American.” His thank-you was a defeat orchestrated by national Republicans, in an unprecedented intervention by a national party against the re-election of the other party’s leader.

"They made promise after promise," said Red Cloud, "and never kept but one. They promised to take our land, and they took it." Red Cloud might have some words of wisdom for the Neville Chamberlain Democrats, if they were willing to listen.

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And how does Sen. Feinstein show her bipartisan spirit? By endorsing the nomination of Condoleeza Rice. This is the same Condoleeza Rice who tried to lie to the 9/11 Commission. That Commission was created through the initiative of those courageous 9/11 widows, who wouldn’t take no for an answer. Rice knew that Richard Ben-Veniste had read the memo, “Bin Laden Determined To Strike Inside U.S.,” when she mischaracterized it as strictly “historical.” She knew its contents were classified, and that her Administration would resist declassifying it. Who would expect them to? The Neville Chamberlains have accepted unprecedented and runaway secrecy without a whimper, even as it makes public oversight of government less and less practical. Rice was counting on Ben-Veniste to behave like his Neville Chamberlain colleagues, a faith that proved misplaced when he asked her for the memo’s title, which was not classified. Score one for the good guys. Condi tried to lie to the widows, and didn’t get away with it.

This is the woman Sen. Feinstein says has “the skill, , the judgment and the poise and the leadership to lead in these difficult times.” I’ll say it again: Condoleeza Rice is dishonest. Her other qualifications? She was wrong about America’s terrorist threat, failed to do her job as National Security Advisor in even a minimally competent manner, and has neither the training nor the temperament to be – excuse the dirty word – a diplomat.

Then Dianne gave the left-handed compliment. “My sense is that the president trusts her implicitly.” That’s true. Lucky Luciano trusted his lieutenants, too. That didn’t make them worthy to hold high office in the United States of America. That’s not called a qualification – that’s called cronyism. The question is not whether the President trusts her. The question is whether the American people – who, according to the civics books, are her bosses – can trust her. The evidence is clear: they cannot. Neither can the world, to whom she will be representing us.

Some on the left have felt betrayed by Feinstein’s actions today. “She used to be a hero,” one blogger wrote. Well, I remember Dianne Feinstein from her early days running for mayor of San Francisco. She was no hero. She ran against George Moscone, a strong and decent man, by taunting him from the right. She was also the first mayoral candidate in my memory to use a campaign jingle in her TV ads. “Dianne makes a difference,” jaunty voices would sing in their best Pepsodent-smile way. Dianne lost, through the wisdom of the voters of San Francisco, only to reach the office anyway when Dan White’s bullets struck down Moscone and Harvey Milk. It was a bitter pill to swallow for many Moscone supporters when Feinstein stepped into that office.

(You remember Dan White, don’t you? He was the right-wing, tough-on-crime, telegenic conservative who didn’t take his political failures in a sportsmanlike manner. I a fit of rage, or pique, he murdered two men. He then used the wimpiest, whiniest, ‘it’s not my fault’ defense imaginable: he claimed that blood sugar problems affected his mood and meant he wasn’t responsible for his actions. This ‘Twinkie defense,’ as it became known, was successful and he got off with a shockingly light sentence. This paved the way for the criminal defense of generations of hard-right hypocrites to come. They’re tough on crime until it’s them or their family, when they become touchy-feely types begging for mercy and crying about how they’re misunderstood. That’s why Noelle Bush is still ‘out’ after her ‘three strikes.’ Paging Officer Krupke. Rush Limbaugh, are you listening?)

Dear Sen.Feinstein, Should you decide to run for re-election, and I hope you do not, I will be working for your defeat in the next primary. Many people will join me. Please go home. Live off the defense contract money your husband earns at URS. I don’t know if your motivation in the Rice nomination was true bipartisanship, a back room deal, or the desire to be treated kindly at the next URS Board of Directors cocktail party. But go. Go, now. Or we will mobilize to make you go. You don’t want a bitter primary fight, and we don’t want one either, but we’ll do it if we have to. So just go.

I don’t want the Democratic Party to lose another seat, but if that’s what it takes to send the Neville Chamberlains a message, I’m willing to risk it. As for Dianne Feinstein, “if Dr. Rice's past performance is any indication, we can rest easy,” said the good Senator. I hope it’s the Senator’s turn to rest in 2006. With all that Defense Department money waiting at home, that should be easy.