January 27, 2006

Filibuster, John Kerry, Kennedy and Judge Alito

There are a lot of things in politics that deserve a rip-roaring belly laugh; JFK excuse me, John Friggin Kerry being chief among these. Kerry is most noted for being elected as Mr. Flip-Flop of 2004. Of course, he was running for president at the time, but so what?

Kerry (and his partner in crime - T. Kennedy) have decided that they would like to filibuster the vote on the nomination of Samuel Alito to the United States Supreme Court. Senator(s) can you say STUPID? You two have got to be the dumbest of the dumb.

From the CNN folk comes this:

Sources close to Kerry, who lost to Bush in the 2004 race, told CNN that the senator was calling colleagues from Switzerland, where he was attending the World Economic Forum. He announced his decision to support a filibuster Wednesday at a meeting of his Democratic colleagues.

The White House believes Alito's supporters have the 60 votes they need to block any filibuster, spokesman Steve Schmidt said, and suggested that Kerry's move was designed to buttress a possible 2008 presidential run.

The Washington Post's Charles Babington reports:

Several prominent Democratic senators called for a filibuster of Samuel A. Alito Jr.'s Supreme Court nomination yesterday, exposing a deep divide in the party even as they delighted the party's liberal base.

The filibuster's supporters -- including Sens. John F. Kerry and Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts -- acknowledged that the bid is likely to fail and that Alito is virtually certain to be confirmed Tuesday. But they said extended debate may draw more Americans' attention to Alito's conservative stands on abortion, civil rights, presidential powers and other matters.

"Judge Alito will take America backward, especially when it comes to civil rights and discrimination laws," Kerry said in a statement issued by his office. He added: "It's our right and our responsibility to oppose him vigorously and to fight against this radical upending of the Supreme Court."

The Democrats are divided? News to me! On the other hand, that famous entertainer Will Rogers once noted: "I don't belong to any organized political party. I'm a Democrat."

Senator Kerry, you greatly remind me of a saying by Dietrich Bonhöffer:

Folly is a more dangerous enemy to the good than evil. One can protest against evil; it can be unmasked and, if need be, prevented by force. Evil always carries the seeds of its own destruction... Against folly we have no such defense. Neither protests nor force can touch it; reasoning is no use...

So the fool, as distinct from the scoundrel, is completely self-satisfied; in fact, he can easily become dangerous, as it does not take much to make him aggressive. A fool must therefore be treated more cautiously than a scoundrel.

H/T to Stop the ACLU

Posted by GM Roper at January 27, 2006 05:59 AM

I'm sorry, but the two Senators most widely known for having their feet planted firmly in their mouths and who are made fun of more than anyone in recent history are actually expecting enough of a majority to take them seriously? The two Senators representative of a state whose population is decreasing in a manner reminscent of a mass exodus?

Excuse me while I, too, have a good old fashioned "rip-roaring belly laugh".

With every word that comes from their mouths is confirmation that they still don't understand what the Supreme Court's role in government is.

Their very actions belie their every word. They do not, under any circumstances, want a Justice who will look objectively at any future case which involves the word "abortion". They do not want the issue to ever be visited again. Settled law indeed. Suppose we espoused that very ideal in 1972 as Roe v. Wade was under consideration to be heard by the Supreme Court? The illegality of abortion was certainly settled law before that. For two centuries.

They do not want a black, female or hispanic Justice unless their name is followed with a capital (D) and the assurance that they will reject any further such cases.

These two, in particular, are hypocrites of the highest order. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

Dang I'm long-winded, aren't I?

Posted by Oyster at January 27, 2006 08:21 AM

GM, once again you've hit the proverbial nail on the head. While the two K boys of Mass. are idiots, because they don't appear really evil (though they are appearing more and more so to me) to most folks, they are not perceived as a real threat to the social good.

They are rather like the entertainment biz, the media, and many academics. They are wrapped in the respectability of worthy institutions and then they go on with mostly "bumper sticker" comments from the forum provided by those who voted for them. Gad.

My spouse, VERY MISTAKENLY, received a mailing from Teddy Kennedy yesterday. It was one of those that was asking for money to push the Senate back into the Dem's camp. She read it aloud to me. Lots and lots of allegations and statements of fact. Not one single piece of evidence about how GW Bush really is the devil, as he so claimed...in so many words.

Do you think that these guys have actually convinced themselves of all that they say? Or are they knowingly lying?

Posted by tad at January 27, 2006 09:03 AM

I agree with tad. Kerry and Kennedy calling for a filibuster is actually humorous...I guess they can't count?!?!? I'm proud that my Dem senator came out yesterday and said she won't support a filibuster b/c there are just too many other important issues in Congress. K&K clearly don't have the support of their colleagues or the public. Confirm Alito!!!

Posted by Louise at January 27, 2006 10:10 AM

The Dynamic Duo from MA...oh boy. The two gruesome loothsomes LOL...dorks. I can't believe they're wasting their time.

Posted by Raven at January 27, 2006 02:25 PM

Quick, the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy has to go into its Brer Rabbitt routine. "Oh no please, Senator Kerry! Not a FILIBUSTER! Anything but that!"

Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at January 27, 2006 05:13 PM

BTW, Do you have the source for that Bonhoeffer quote? I'd like to steal it. I'll trade you a GK Chesterton or a CS Lewis for it it you like.

Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at January 27, 2006 05:18 PM

I guess I see the move by Kerry more simply: a craven tactic to shore up his popularity with those in his party whose vote he needs for the 2008 Democratic Presidential nomination.

He knows the filibuster is a loser - but that doesn't matter because he can turn to the Dems in Iowa and say: "See, I am a reliable liberal who has the courage to speak truth to power!". And he gets bonus points for also being able to play the vicitm ("Look how they treated me!").

Which, for me, only makes him less qualified to serve (and more disgusting), but if he ends up as the nominee then I predict four more years of Republican control of theExecutive branch, which is good.

Posted by too many steves at January 28, 2006 07:17 AM

I appreciate your posts, particularly the Bonhoeffer quote.

In truth though, I think the observations on Kerry are a bit off. I think he is delusional ... because he came close in 2004, he thinks he has a real shot at the goal in 2008. Even Gore had better sense than to lose twice. That he came as close as he did in 2004 is a reflection of antipathy for Bush rather than empathy for Kerry. The Democrats won't go down that road again and Kerry would do well to shore up his Massachusettes base ... methinks Massachusettes voters are getting a bit tired of having two clowns representing them in the Senate.

Posted by Well_Seasoned at January 28, 2006 08:23 AM

Frankly, Kerry should be eternally thankful for BDS or he wouldn't have come even close. The problem is that he's campaigning against Bush for '08. Sshh! Don't tell him Bush won't be running.

Posted by Oyster at January 28, 2006 12:05 PM

This is too filled with hypocrisy and fraught with peril for our country for me to find much humor in Kerry and company's last-minute call for a fillibuster. Just when I think Kerry has reached the bottom, he finds a new low. The specter of Kerry being the Democratic party presidential nominee for 2008 sends me looking for a crucifix and a silver stake.

Good will come of his folly, though, if the enough Democratic senators repudiate him and his unprincipled action to enable the cloture motion to pass by 70+ yes votes. Unfortunately, a number seem to be bending to the wind of opportunism and pandering (such as Feinstein) and appear determined to jump off the cliff. This could become as much of a defining moment for the Democratic party as for Kerry.

AVI, from a Google search, it appears that the GM's Bonhoeffer quote comes from his Letters and Papers from Prison, and in particular from an essay therein called "After Ten Years..."

Posted by civil truth at January 28, 2006 03:38 PM

" So the fool, as distinct from the scoundrel, is completely self-satisfied; in fact, he can easily become dangerous, as it does not take much to make him aggressive. A fool must therefore be treated more cautiously than a scoundrel."


Posted by L.B. at January 28, 2006 04:22 PM

Folks, I've been reading GM's Corner from the start and I got to say that it is always terrific. He does his research, he's got humor - both in front of the lights and behind, and he makes people think.

I am particularly delighted that in a world that is often uncivil, GM remains civil to all...unless they cross boundries of taste and decency that are really beyond question.

Well, applause for GM and his many cohorts. I look forward to many more thought provoking comments.

Plaudits and Applause,


Posted by tad at January 28, 2006 09:43 PM

Get ready. The midterms are shaping up to be, yet another referendum on Bush's presidency

Posted by LASunsett at January 29, 2006 08:16 AM

Everyone needs to know that Tad only made that comment because he think's I'm buying breakfast at our next Saturday morning repast.

Posted by GM Roper at January 29, 2006 09:21 AM

Well, OK. I rather like to think I am frugal...GM uses the word "cheap." 'Sides, a meal is a meal is a meal. If I butter something besides the toast, hey, I am still not as bad as most politicians we know.

Posted by tad at January 30, 2006 07:25 AM

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