July 1, 2010
The NY Times was almost humorous in calling on the Senate to confirm Miguel Estrada's pal Elena Kagan. Estrada, you recall, was one of the few shining moments during Bush's presidency when Democrats rose up and blocked Estrada from confirmation on the court of appeals. Neo-con, right-wing nut Estrada, according to former classmate Kagan, is "qualified" not just for the court of appeals but (sit before reading) the Supreme Court. And, catch this friends, "I would have voted for him," said Ms. Pablum.
In essence, Ms. Pablum does not seem to believe in much other than self-promotion. So much hoo-hawing about the importance of electing Obama to save the Supreme Court from another Alito, a Thomas, or a Scalia! Looks like we got a two-fer.
The Times gave her an endorsement of sorts. The paper of record wrote, assuming the commitments she made were authentic, "Elena Kagan delivered an impressive performance...she deserves confirmation." Wow! Such enthusiasm!
For my part, after listening to her testimony, I don't care whether or not she is confirmed. Hardly a role model for courage on social and economic issues, she stands for the proposition that you should keep your head down when controversy steps onto your porch. Is this really the best we can do? Eh?
Money money: What is the role of the two parties in our two-party system? They no longer select the candidates, they no longer fund the campaigns, they don't seem to care about platform promises, so why do we defer to them at all? Take Republican Linda McMahon, former World Wrestling CEO, who says she will spend as much as "$50 million of her own money" to defeat Democrat Dick "OK so I lied about serving in Vietnam" Blumenthal for a Senate seat. WWF CEO complaining that her opponent is perpetrating a fraud? What is pro wrestling? This is politics as farce.
I miss Studs Terkel. He would get a great laugh out of this one. Meanwhile, like you, I got about a dozen calls for money because the June 30 reporting date is approaching. "Candidates will be judged--fairly or not--by their ability to raise money." One lobbyist in D.C. said he has "gotten 50-60 invitations to fundraisers in the last two days."
I am going on strike!
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I'm with Howard Zinn and Ralph Nader on this one. Our two party system is designed to protect the status quo. Zinn railed about how one of the two parties always envelops the radically discontent to disperse their energy. Nader famously stated that there is not a dime's worth of difference between the Democrat and Republican parties.
Want to know a dirty secret?
There is a third party. It has elected people to federal office with no bureaucratic hierarchy involved. It is the party of the people, not the special interests or the powerful. Without an official structure for the parasites of politics to attach to, this party is the only one with a chance of remaining unsoiled by "the process."
Of course I refer to the political status of Independent. I did not say it would be easy, but candidates need not affiliate with one of the two parties to win election.
The two parties, both Democrat and Republican, have become "too big to fail." Which is exactly why they should.
-Lex Tinker-Sackett | Eau Claire, WI | July 1, 2010
So Ms. Pablum had her hearing. Yawn. What did you expect from the Obungle Administration. Something that actually meant anything?
Meanwhile, in that Bastion of Bluster known as the United States Senate the vote was 99-0 to confirm General Betrayus. Bobby Byrd is dead so that means every living one of those nitwits was for it. That would include Feingold. Oh well, what can we expect from "I like John Roberts" Russ. His latest stunt is to tell us all that he won't vote for the financial "reforms" that have come down the legislative highway. Must be election time because Russ is telling us how tough he is. What a crock. It is now clear that Feingold has made a career of talking tough after the deal has been cooked. No words of outrage as the process unfolds though. His latest whine fest on CommonDreams is essentially one long article telling us that he is ineffectual. Wow. Can't wait to vote for him huh?
Your on strike. Hell Ed, we should ALL be on strike. Shut 'er down. I want a Mulligan on this enterprise known as the United States of America. Russ should understand that. I hear he recently taken up golfing.
-Griebnotz Doerkpfester | Egg Harbor, WI. | July 1, 2010
Money talks with a loud voice and dominates the news cycles.
I no longer believe that the press delivers an unbiased voice. I include the New York Times in my condemnation. This is not so unusual since like many businesses their goal is profit before truth.
-Richard Kanak | Cherry Valley, Illinois | July 1, 2010
Elena Kagen is just Antonin Scalia in a skirt.
-Jack Stolski | Madison, WI | July 2, 2010
Ed, can we please please PLEASE start over with the Supreme (?) Court first? I'm sure Thomas Jefferson would agree, that is if Tom Paine doesn't rise from his grave and shoot five of them first.
-Jim Limbach | Stevens Point Wisconsin | July 8, 2010