Cindy Sheehan: The White House Years

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It's one of the least-intriguing mysteries in politics: Why, since Democrats won't cut off war funding and speed up the exit from Iraq, isn't the left breaking off of the party? (A majority of Democrats now disappove of Congress's work on Iraq, after all.) It's pretty simple. The hard left of the party remembers what happened in 2000 when a couple million of them ditched Al Gore for Ralph Nader. Like the paleocons who stuck with Bush in 2000 and 2004 (especially 2000 when Pat Buchanan offered them an alternative vote), left-wingers are going to suck it up and vote for whichever wretched candidate the anti-Republican party coughs up.

The opinion to the contrary is limited to anti-war groups like Code Pink, which started small and remain small, and columns like this one by Manuel Garcia Jr. which recommends the election by mass write-in campaign of President Cindy Sheehan.

"But Cindy Sheehan has no experience running a government!" you might fret. Honestly, are you happy with the results garnered by our "government experienced" would-be Pharaohs? Is there anybody who believes that Cindy Sheehan is less trustworthy, less honest, less truthful and less concerned about the USAmerican people than anyone in the dugout of Big Money approved presidential pitchmen? Number One barks out the orders and hires and fires as needed to get them done. Do you really believe Cindy Sheehan is less capable of doing this than the careerist androids of the Big Money Brat Pack. [Insert John Belushi saying "Please"].

The flaw in this suggestion is the same flaw as in John Lennon's song "Imagine." Yes, it is true that if most people had the same vision they could overcome war, hunger, nationalism, religion, and all the scourges of humankind. But, humanity has proved unable to share such a compassionate vision, even though humans everywhere say they want "peace" and justice" and other forms of universal good. Note, however, that the flaw is based on probability, not possibility. It is not probable that most people would share a common humanistic vision, but there is no logical impediment to such an outcome, and in fact if most people did choose to share such a vision — through their actions — then the desired humanistic compassionate state (and world) would necessarily have to emerge. It is the same with the elections in the U.S.A., if enough people choose to vote for a given candidate, in this case by write-in balloting, then regardless of the shenanigans by partisan election officials, and the hacking of electronic voting machines, the "will of the people" will become clearly evident. The success of any such act of mass disobedience would be the beginning of the end of the current syndicates running USAmerican politics as a continuing criminal enterprise for the enrichment of corporate sponsors.

An entire page of commentary like this.

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  1. Some of what he says sounds sort of reasonable; after all, the government is basically a cabal of incumbent interests.

    The problem is that he is under the “it’s terrible, but our guy (girl) will fix it” fallacy.

  2. nothing brings people together like a common enemy.

  3. “Why, since Democrats won’t cut off war funding and speed up the exit from Iraq, isn’t the left breaking off of the party?”

    Because they’re just in it to get laid.

  4. Tonight on Hit & Run: a lefty blogger says lefty things that he knows damn well will never have any actual effect on American politics!

    Film at 11! Or not.

  5. “left-wingers are going to suck it up and vote for whichever wretched candidate the anti-Republican party coughs up”

    No they’re not. They are going to vote for RON PAUL!!!

  6. Is “USAmerican” just a weird language tic or is there some ideology behind writing that?

  7. which recommends the election by mass write-in campaign of President Cindy Sheehan.

    What? Is Kucinich now chopped liver? If the anti-war far-left wants to vote for someone who represents their views, why not vote for the anti-war far-left candidate that’s ALREADY IN THE RACE!?!?! Yes, Kucinich may be kooky, but unlike Sheehan he possesses the ability to walk and chew gum at the same time.


  8. No they’re not. They are going to vote for RON PAUL!!!

    Uhmm…no their not. Despite all the fellating of Dr. No in these parts, he holds many positions that lefties find completely unpalatable. See here for some of his views on religion in the USA: http://www.lewrockwell.com/paul/paul148.html

    Furthermore, he opposes birthright citizenship, amnesty for illegals and open borders, welfare, hate crime legislation.

    Most lefties would not hold their nose and vote for him no matter how much he opposes Iraq.

    Personally, his views on religion and birthright citizenship and his immigration policies are deal breakers for me. The rest I could live with.

  9. @Anonymo: people on the fringes love their own vernacular. My guess is it’s some sort of commentary on USA != America, since that leaves out the Canadians, Mexicans and all of South America. Or something.

  10. Which one of you varmints reset the clock on her 15 minutes? Please. Go Away.

    You know what? I’d rather have Hillary. There, I said it.

  11. I was being overly enthusiastic, but… Religion?

    What is it you fear Dr. No would do about religion as president?.

  12. Democrats have voted to cut off funding, by overwhelming numbers, every time it’s come up since taking over Congress.

    Damn those Democrats for not forcing Repubicans to vote against the war!

  13. What is it you fear Dr. No would do about religion as president?.

    Jay D,

    Any President who doesn’t believe in the separation of Church and State scares me.

    So does any politician who espouses “War on Christmas” tripe. Especially someone like Ron Paul who should know damn well that “Happy Holidays” is really a free market response to changing customer demographics and wanting to be inclusive to non-Christians rather than fear of offending or political correctness.

  14. The effect of such write-in campaigns by anti-war activists would be to tip clost districts from Democratic candidates who would continue to vote with their party and against the war, to Republican candidates who would continue to vote with their party in favor of staying the course.

    Thanks for the Iraq War, Nader voters! Now see if you can keep it going for another two, four, maybe even eight years!

  15. Any President who doesn’t believe in the separation of Church and State scares me.
    ChicagoTom,

    That’s fine, but what do you think Ron Paul would do about it? I can’t see a President Dr. No doing anything about religion whatsoever. He would probably follow the constitution and sign no law respecting an establishement. That is what Dr. No does best, making no laws.

    But if you are just scared of him, I guess I can’t reason with fear.

  16. “Thanks for the Iraq War, Nader voters! Now see if you can keep it going for another two, four, maybe even eight years!”

    But would we be any better off with a Hillary presidency? She will be very hawkish to prove that a woman can have a muscular foreign policy. If Bush doesn’t get us in Iran before he leaves, she will.

  17. “Any President who doesn’t believe in the separation of Church and State scares me.”

    Where do you get that Ron Paul doesn’t believe in the separation of church and state, Tom?

  18. Jake,

    I imagine she’d be more hawkish than I might like, but comparable to Bush/Cheney? I find that highly unlikely.

  19. Where do you get that Ron Paul doesn’t believe in the separation of church and state, Tom?

    For crying out loud Jake, I posted the link in this thread’s comments.

    Here it is again:
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/paul/paul148.html

    The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders’ political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs.

    He also wrongly believes that the secular left in this nation wants the US to be “a nation that is legally and culturally biased against Christianity”

  20. That’s fine, but what do you think Ron Paul would do about it? I can’t see a President Dr. No doing anything about religion whatsoever. He would probably follow the constitution and sign no law respecting an establishement. That is what Dr. No does best, making no laws.

    But if you are just scared of him, I guess I can’t reason with fear.

    Jay D,
    Maybe fear is the wrong word. Any politician that doesn’t believe in the serparation between Church and State or ascribes to the belief that there is a war on Christmas or Christians has highly questionable judgement and isn’t fit to be President, IMHO.

    Furthermore, executive power is more than merely signing and vetoing bills. Look at Bush and his Office of Faith Based initiatives.

    I don’t want a President who panders to Christians and believes that maintaining Christian dominance in the country is important.

    Fear can be reasoned with. Irrational Fear (or phobias) can not. Mine worry is not irrational.

  21. “The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders’ political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs.”

    I stronly disagree with Ron Paul on that. I find it very disappointing. Ron Paul obviously doesn’t know his history. But, I’m still going to vote for him. There is not a single candidate that I agree with 100%. Ron Paul probably comes closest to me on the issues that are most important to me, but not his position on the above quote.

  22. I strongly agree with Ron Paul. The Founding Fathers did draw deeply on their religious beliefs in establishing our system of governance.

    Among those beliefs were a passionate belief in secular governance and the equality of all people in civil society, based on their Christian belief that adherence to Christian morality and practices is only pleasing to God’s eyes if it is willingly adopted by a free individual choosing it for himself.

  23. I don’t trust any Ron Paul quotes from lewrockwell.com. See if you can dig up something he stands behind. Like from hier. 20 seconds surfing turned up this, which strikes me as reassuring.

  24. I don’t trust any Ron Paul quotes from lewrockwell.com. See if you can dig up something he stands behind. Like from hier. 20 seconds surfing turned up this, which strikes me as reassuring.

    In fairness, Warren, this isn’t just “quotes” the piece was authored by Ron Paul.

  25. What a terrible article that was that ChicagoTom linked to. Worthy of Hannity or O’Reilly. Perhaps we can get Weigel to ask him about it since he appears to be on the Paul beat?

  26. “What a terrible article that was that ChicagoTom linked to. Worthy of Hannity or O’Reilly.”
    JasonC

    But what do you guys think a President Paul would do? Mandate Christmas pageants in schools? He has a personal opinion on the matter. He also has demonstrated restraint in government. He doesn’t pander. Look at Warren’s link.

  27. I don’t think he’ll do anything about the “War on Christmas” or whatever. But, to me, it’s similar to him saying “I don’t believe in evolution”. I don’t think he would outlaw the teaching of evolution but it does not reflect well on his thought processes.

  28. replace “thought processes” with “critical thinking skills” above. better gets at what my problem with this is.

  29. So, JasonC, you think Paul is stupid for imagining that there is any truth to the idea that vocal minorities (with apparently very fragile sensitivities) try to rid things like nativity scenes from any and all flavor of public square?

  30. So, JasonC, you think Paul is stupid for imagining that there is any truth to the idea that vocal minorities (with apparently very fragile sensitivities) try to rid things like nativity scenes from any and all flavor of public square?

    No — he is stupid for believing and pushing the War on Christmas meme and feeding into the bullshit persecuted Christian line of thought.

    He is stupid if he really believes that stores that choose to use Happy Holidays rather than Merry Xmas are doing so because of fear of offending, rather than because a smart business decision is to try and be as inclusive as possible and try to pay respect to non-Christians as well as Christians.

    Furthermore, I don’t feel it is invalid for non-Christians to object to public funds and tax dollars used to pay for nativity scenes.

    As for nativity scenes in the public square, I don’t think it is wrong for non-Christians to object if their government pays honor to Christian religions while not doing so for other religions. If we have to accept nativity scenes, then why not Menorahs as well? Or Kwanzaa decorations? And why not Hindu or Muslim or Wiccan decorations as well? It could quickly get out of control could it not trying to represent the religion of all of the residents of an area, no?

    And let’s not pretend that he has any kind of valid point when he talks about “the left” being hostile to religion. Last I checked it was the the Christian right and the GOP that had a fit when a Muslim or Hindu prayer was said in Congress.

    “Hostile to religion” to Dr No and the rest of the GOP apparently means hostility to affirming the dominance of the Christian religion in the USA. And yes, many people are hostile to that. We don’t want one religion being elevated above all others. So we ask that either our government, who is supposed to represent all of us, not just the majority, treat them all equally, or stay out the religion business altogether.

  31. Were most founding fathers informed by their religous beliefs? Yes. Are there some on the left suing over religous symbols on public property? Yes. Would Ron Paul impose his personal religous beliefs on anyone? No.

    Where’s the problem?

    A free society expects its members to have thick skin. If seeing a nativity scene in front of the county courthouse scares you so much your bowels empty involuntarily, than perhaps the libertarian movement is not for you.

  32. I prefer to put my energy, what little it is, into encouraging the logic of not voting, period.
    Here’s an established trend, popular among all political persuasions, we just need to trot a little to get ahead of and “lead.”

  33. I am going to vote for Cindy Sheehan. What this country needs right now is a person with a history of spewing anti-American vitriol. The fact that she has implied the US was behind 9-11 and her history of anti-semitism are just bonuses for me. Go Cindy.

  34. If we can’t agree on a candidate, shouldn’t we be able to agree on no candidate at all?
    (There I go again: trying to “lead” this thing.)

  35. You know, reading about Paul’s bonafides (or lack thereof) just makes me want to play Bioshock even more.

    Andrew Ryan for president!

  36. Cindy Sheehan would make a great president. . . FOR ME TO POOP ON!

  37. But what do you guys think a President Paul would do? Mandate Christmas pageants in schools?

    Schools operated by the Department of Education he would shut down?

  38. Democrats have voted to cut off funding, by overwhelming numbers, every time it’s come up since taking over Congress.

    Wrong… Democrats voted to cut funding, Bush threatened to veto the budget. The Democrats could have continued to refuse to include the funding, but then there would be no budget and there would be no funding for pork. So the Democrats decided to include the funding, so that they could get their personal pork into the next budget.

    Bush can veto the budget, but he can’t pass a budget without the help of the Democratic congress. Had the democrats stuck to their guns, instead of feeding at the trough, there would be no funding for the Iraq war.

    The Democrats make token efforts at ending the war, but if it comes down to choice between fleecing the taxpayers or ending the war, the Democrats will choose to fleece the taxpayers.

    The effect of such write-in campaigns by anti-war activists would be to tip clost districts from Democratic candidates who would continue to vote with their party and against the war, to Republican candidates who would continue to vote with their party in favor of staying the course.

    Perhaps it would… ONCE. The Democrats would lose some districts, but they would learn a very important lesson. It would be extremly harmful in the short term, but it would make the Democrats EXTREMLY responsive to their supporters in the following election.

  39. Had the democrats stuck to their guns, instead of feeding at the trough

  40. Seems to me, considering the number of actual butts-on-seats, that the Republicans are at least 49% of the problem.

    If enough Republicans had voted against funding the war, it would have been enough to override Bush’s veto.

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  42. Rex,

    Democrats are not to blame for Bush’s vetos of the war-ending bills the Democrats have passed. Democrats are not to blame for the Republican fillibusters in the Senate.

    Democrats have voted to end this war every time it’s come up, and have been stymied by the lock-step pro-war votes of the Republicans.

    If the number of Senate Repubicans voting to end the war this September rises to 10%, to joing the Democratic 90%, the war will be ended.

  43. Hmm. Seems my long, rambling post didn’t take. Doggone dial-up. Anyhow, I don’t like Sheehan, because, like many civilians (I don’t mean to be condescending, but many civilians seem condescending to us in the military) she doesn’t really understand what it means to put on the uniform. As a grieving mother, I sympathize with her, but she seems completely clueless as to what her son’s untimely death may mean to his comrades.
    Although a mother’s grief is most profound, the loss of a fellow servicemember is given a more complete measure of perspective by the views of those who served alongside him or her.
    I don’t expect that to be a consolation to her, but I can’t imagine her describing his death as “meaningless” if she understood what it meant to put her boots on the ground for her country.
    Such claims may have seemed meaningless to me before I joined, but when I see all the benefits our taxpayers and gov’t give us for our service (G.I. bill, vocational training, etc.), I do feel a measure of gratitude to my country.
    The situation in Iraq may be politically unsalvageable, but that certainly does not make the death of a servicemember ‘meaningless’, at least any moreso than dying in the service of the “War on Drugs”.
    Those of us in the executive branch must serve with honor, and most of s do. Politicians may put us in awful situations, but at least from my perspective, serving one’s country is never a waste, and I will always lend more credence to SPC Sheehan’s views on his service (whatever they were) and his own moral authority, than I will his mother’s.

  44. Er, I meant to say not just politically, but possibly also militarily unsalvageable (the situation in Iraq).

  45. Art-P.O.G. | August 18, 2007, 2:23pm | #

    too bad the long rambling version got lost. good post.

  46. …and the hacking of electronic voting machines, the “will of the people” will become clearly evident.

    This “hacking” thing is a relic of the 2000 presidential election. It is worn out and tired. “Gore won”, “Bush stole the election”, yada, yada.

  47. Is “USAmerican” just a weird language tic or is there some ideology behind writing that?

    Probably a way to avoid using “American” to refer to the United States, since “American” rightfully refers to the whole South & North American continents. Way back when I was a college lefty, this was considered a big deal.

  48. Art-P.O.G.,

    Would you recommend that we send servicemembers into war zones if you knew before hand that doing so would accomplish nothing of value, just so the resulting military deaths would have meaning to their squad-mates?

    No, of course not.

    Then why can we not apply the same reasoning to situations when we didn’t figure out the mission’s worthlessness until we were in the middle of it?

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