Sunday, November 11, 2007

The 'Heartbreaking" Kucinich Candidacy

'There is something that is surely heartbreaking about the hand that is regularly dealt to Kucinich and his idealistic second bid for the Presidency. But the Congressman has chosen to play at the table of contemporary American politics, where not only the rules but the very premises of the process are stacked against him. It is not merely the dominance of the monied elites and the party bosses, nor even the emphasis on image and style, that undermines a candidate who is actually referred to by supposedly serious reporters as “too short to be President.” It is the desperation of Democratic voters denied, voters who, after so many stolen elections and failed campaigns, have convinced themselves that the only thing that matters in 2008 is winning—and that the only way to win is by nominating not the candidate who is right on the issues but the candidate who seems, a la John Kerry in 2004, to have the right strategy or at least the right stature. Yet, Kucinich keeps returning to the table and demanding to be part of the game.'
--from a cover story in the current issue of The Progressive. To review earlier Kucinich-related items, you can go here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

21 Comments:

At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

He read the impeachment articles into the record, and for that he deserves much credit. Maybe he can break the ice.

Why did Pelosi take impeachment off the table? It should be the centerpiece.

 
At 9:10 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

No way should Pelosi or the party take that up. First of all, there's only a year to go in their terms, and it would take almost that long to accomplish. More importantly, it would almost guarantee that the 2008 election would be dominated by that issue alone, which would cripple the Dems. Right now, it's their presidential election to lose, and that would be a collosal mistake that could almost single-handedly lose the election for them. Do you want Crazy Rudy's hands on the nukes? Not me, baby.

 
At 1:53 AM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

Given the dissatisfaction with Bush and the unfulfilled mandate from the 2006 election to rein him in, I don't think it would exactly be a loser of a position.

The GOP is capable of little besides winning elections. What do you suppose they would do if the shoe were on the other foot?

 
At 9:34 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I do completely agree that there was a mandate from '06 to rein him in. That's quite another thing from impeachment. It's shameful, for instance, that the Dems have voted through the attorney general nominee after he failed to stand up on behalf of ending torture. In a hundred other ways, the Congressional Dems have been way too soft when they should have been firm.

And yes, the Republicans would engage in scorched-earth tactics if given the chance, because they're a party mostly without principles. But I suppose I'm old fashioned that way: I don't believe in letting the opposition's lack of scruples push me in the same direction.

 
At 10:38 AM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

The difference is, the GOP typically scorches the earth with bogus information and issues.

There is nothing wrong with mercilessly spotlighting the actual doings of Bush, Cheney and company. There is something wrong with not doing it, and I don't mean just tactically.

 
At 10:43 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Agreed. And bogus information is generally about all they have to fall back upon. And Christ, there's just so much bad behavior (and worse) to spotlight with those two thugs.

 
At 11:05 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Bluster, I came across this piece this morning on HuffingtonPost, and thought it spoke nicely to our subject. Nora Ephron, famous for NEVER forgiving her ex-husband Carl Bernstein for his sins, said this about the two parties: "the Democrats tend to break your heart and the Republicans are just the boys you'd never go out with anyway."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/nora-ephron/its-hard-to-be-a-democra_b_71142.html

 
At 11:44 AM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

She's right. The Democrats as a whole may not be much, but they are all we've got.

The whole Kos/netroots thing is about removing the GOP's grip from the controls, and at the same time taking the Democratic party in the direction of effectiveness and principle.

 
At 11:48 AM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

I sense that she is attracted to the Bad Boy, so I think she is suppressing her ambivalence by saying "the Republicans are just the boys you'd never go out with anyway."

 
At 11:59 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

That's a very psychologically insightful comment about Ephron. I think I'd have to agree. And by the way, for those who missed my reference to her failure to forgive Carl Bernstein, she wrote the script for the movie "Heartburn," which was a thinly veiled depiction of her marriage with one half of the Woodward-Bernstein duo. But she continues to bash him to this day, even decades after their divorce.

Where I would take issue with you a little is on Kos (and I think we've debated this before): he's clearly for replacing Republicans with Dems, but I don't think he has much principle behind it. I think his sole principle is having them win power. Doesn't seem to have many ideas of what they should do with it, in the many interviews I've heard and read with him.

 
At 12:32 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

The mere act of replacing today's Republicans is in itself a move toward principle.

While Kos' focus is more on building a decisive Democratic majority, as a regular Kos reader, I think it is a means to an end, not an end in itself. At this tactical stage, almost any Democrat (possibly excepting Lieberman) is preferable to a Republican for majority-building. But the aim is to move the party and the nation back to reasonable and human values.

He plays well with blogs having a different focus, such as Josh Marshall, who emphasizes reporting, and Digby, who is more of an analyst (and a great writer.)

 
At 12:37 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Good point in your first sentence. You're right of course. And I'll have to check out Digby sometime. Haven't ever spent a moment there, but I will sometime soon. What's that URL?

 
At 12:39 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/

 
At 12:42 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Thanks.

 
At 2:19 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

You're welcome. I apologize for harping on this topic, but the last seven years have left me feeling like Digby's logo (Howard Beale.)

 
At 2:22 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I feel your/our pain. Worse yet, these last 7 years have hurt the country in immeasurable ways, which we'll be cleaning up for decades.

 
At 2:35 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

Taking a different tack, are you familiar with Nora Ephron's first writer husband, Dan Greenburg? He wrote some funny stuff in the 70s and 80s. He and the Woodman made me feel that I was a heartland Jewish boy.

 
At 2:43 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

No, that's a completely new name for me. I'd google him to learn more, but maybe you can save me the time and share a couple of good, representative links. Poor lady, by the way: I wouldn't wish being married to a writer on anyone. And to have been married to more than one, while one is a wirter themself, has to be downright god awful.

 
At 6:15 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

I stumbled on this blog entry from a couple of days ago, a revealing glimpse of Nora then and now:

http://warrenboroson.blogspot.com/2007/11/nora-ephron.html

Dan Greenburg has been writing kid-oriented books for quite awhile, but his earlier books about sex were unflinching. He worked on Eros magazine in the early 60s with Ralph Ginzburg, the self-proclaimed "tightfistedest man in America", and a deserved title, based on Greenburg's book, "Scoring." He also wrote a lot for Playboy in the 60s and 70s.

Here's an interview with Dan Greenburg from last year:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20060221.GREENBURG21/TPStory/?query=dan+greenburg

 
At 6:21 PM, Anonymous Mr. Bluster said...

If that doesn't work, go to http://www.theglobeandmail.com/ and search for Dan Greenburg. The article is by Michael Posner. When I tried to reach the article a second time, they wanted me to pay. So you may have just one shot.

 
At 8:49 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Thanks, I'll check it out. Eros Magazine, huh? Yikes.

 

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