Tuesday, October 17, 2006



On Monday, a debate as held in Connecticut featuring the three candidates for Senate, GOP candidate Alan Schlesinger, Democratic nominee Ned Lamont and sore loser and all-around prick Joe Lieberman. Matt Stoller over at MyDD reports:

There is just no question that Alan Schlesinger won this debate, Lamont pretty much held his own, and Lieberman lost. Alan Schlesinger was funny, interesting, and passionate. He made compelling conservative arguments, and punctured the myth that Lieberman was a principled independent. Lamont held his own as a credible candidate, standing up to Joe's attacks. Lieberman was somewhat funny, but he couldn't defend his middle of the road mantra when Alan Schlesinger and Ned Lamont were pointing out that his record doesn't match his rhetoric.

Jane Hamsher at FDL concurs:

Lieberman thought he was going to look "bipartisan" standing in between Ned Lamont and Alan Schlessinger during the debate today but he just looked like a man without a country, crying because everyone was trying to steal his candy. While Joe was praising every Republican in sight (Jodi Rell, John McCain, Susan Collins — funny, no Democrats) Alan Schlessinger reminded him of all the boasting about what a "great liberal" the Lieberman4Lieberman candidate had done during the primary when his job security depended on trying to woo Democrats. When Lieberman tried to nail down the critical senior vote by lying about the fact that he had supported social security privatization, Lamont set the record straight. All Joe could do was whine that Ned was being mean to him, and when he thought he was scoring a master stroke by keeping score of how many times his thin skin got bruised, the audience openly booed him.

After reading these two knowledgable people's analyses I could not wait to head over to Bullmoose because I just knew Marshall Wittman wouldn't let me down. He didn't. The Moose is an unapologetic Lieberman fluffer and I just knew they he would paint a picture of a mighty Joe standing tall over his vanguished foes. And like I said, he didn't disappoint:

This afternoon, Joe Lieberman effectively and persuasively presented the case of the vital center. In contrast,his opponents dutifully delivered their predictable partisan talking points. They both appealed for the partisans on either side of the political spectrum to vote the party line.
But, only Joe showed by detailing specific accomplishments that he has the capacity to get things done for the state. It is striking how shrill the partisans of the left and the right can appear when they are attacking the vital center. Ironically, Negative Ned was clearly relying on the Republican candidate to drive down Joe's vote. He's that desperate.
The central message that Joe delivered was that country should come before party. That is a rather unique and refreshing theme in this most toxic political environment. And the Moose senses that, beyond all the noise and clutter of this election season, voters want to hear constructive cooperation before vituperative confrontation.
In short, Joe came across as the adult. And, when he returns to Washington, he will continue to be a leader of the Coalition of the Adults.

In short, this is my problem with Whitman (aside from the fact that, as evidenced by his first paragraph, Lieberman could be eating a plate of horseshit and Whitman would make it sound as if he were dining on a fine filet); he keeps speaking of Joe as if he is some sort of shining beacon of hope from the center of American politics who is going to lead the partisan heathens to a better place. What I see as the falacy about his constant carping of the "vital center" is that I'm not certain that a center even exists, much less whether it is even remotely vital in this day and age. In my mind, it seems that Whitman views politics like an Oreo cookie, with his "vital center" being the creamy white goodness. These days I view the politics-as-cookie metaphor more like a chocolate chip cookie - either you're the cookie or you're the chip. Everything else is just crumbs. You either support Bush's policies in Iraq or you do not. You either support rubberstamping Bush or you do not. You either support accountability and transparency in government or you do not.

It seems to me that Joe and, by extention Whitman, see themselves as the lone champions of crumbs and I suppose that they're welcome to them; I'm just not certain the crumbs are all that vital during this time in our nation's history.

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