Obama Inaugurated, Ex-Klansman Collapses

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An hour after the inauguration of America's first black president, the Senate's only former Exalted Cyclops of the Ku Klux Klan, Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) collapses. Coincidence?

Sen Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), according to CNN, was also taken to the hospital and is "responding well" to treatment. Updates and details at USA Today's Obama blog:

Senators Edward Kennedy and Robert Byrd fell ill a short time ago at the Capitol luncheon where President Obama and Vice President Biden are being honored, CNN and other news media are reporting.

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  1. New inventory in stock.

    EVERYTHING MUST GO!

  2. I though you said no more political humor … especially irony.

  3. OK, mean-spirited and all, but that headline more than makes up for calling Anchorman ‘brilliantly funny’. Well played, sir.

  4. That’s change we can believe in!

  5. Robert Byrd ca. 1964 “I’ll drop dead the day a black man can be president.”

  6. Only 533 to go!

  7. I can’t believe it took 20 minutes for someone to make that joke, Xeones.

  8. So imagine a very sincere Obama dedicated another Byrd memorial highway after the good Senator’s death.

    You think that can’t be parodied?

  9. Byrd poisoned, Kennedy fed an epileptigenic, Clinton not nominated for SoS (and sorry, Caroline is already sitting in that old seat). It’s starting to remind me of Godfather III. I’m guessing Rahm might have a vehicle accident tonight and Edwards will be thanking his lucky stars he got to bang that broad instead of getting nominated for something.

    This one could be a blockbuster.

  10. too early to give the win to The Extispicator?

  11. We can only hope Timmy, but you should note that the only reason that Clinton wasn’t nominated was because of one republican.

  12. from cnn:

    “Article 1, Section 6 of the Constitution says the following: “No Senator or Representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time.”

    Translation: A lawmaker cannot fill a position if the salary for that position has been raised during that lawmaker’s term in office.”

    Discuss…

  13. FYI this applies to Clinton at SoS in case you didn’t get the reference.

  14. domo,

    This issue has come up several times in American history, and was solved by keeping the SoS’s salary at the old level.

  15. Yeah, I thought I read that she was going to make less than Condi for that reason.

  16. I did know that – it also seems to be the case that appointments were deferred as a result of this prohibition – for example Regan wanted to appoint Orrin Hatch to the SCOTUS but didn’t because of this. I think all previous incidents were democrats, BTW – though I’m not sure. Reading the text, it surely doesn’t seem like the olde const. offers a paycut as a way out. It also doesn’t seem like the point was only to avoid renumerative benefits – the time prohibition seems to indicate some desire to avoid the “revolving door.” Someone would have to challange it, though – i have no idea who would have standing. There is probably zero caselaw on the subject, so it would be a complete crapshoot at the court.

  17. Correction, Obama is the first half-black president. Or half-white, if you prefer. I’m still hoping for world where no one cares about skin color, but that won’t be the next four years.

  18. So does calling him half-black mean you are an optimist of a pessimist? Does it depend on which side of the Mason-Dixon you are from?

  19. Brandybuck –

    Which is why Byrd only collapsed today instead of instant death.

  20. Correction, Obama is the first half-black president.

    I can’t imagine it mattered to Byrd, who probably still believes in the one-drop rule.

  21. Another great job by Reason, class all the way!

    Meanwhile, welcome to Post Racial America!

  22. I remember when 9/11 happened, there was this football player for San Diego State, I think it was, who said something to the effect…

    You see they were in the air going to play a game in Arizona when 9/11 happened, and according to this player, you see, well they were going to have to play without their starting quarterback who was hurt, but 9/11 diverted their flight and the game had to be rescheduled, so he was quoted as having described the whole disaster as a “blessing in disguise”.

    Puttin’ a bright side on a few thousand people dying like that, I remember thinking that was pretty awful, but I can see some of the upside of this situation from a libertarian perspective. Sure, Obama’s gonna suck, but on the other hand, hey, maybe Byrd and Kennedy will soon be dead!

  23. Reading the text, it surely doesn’t seem like the olde const. offers a paycut as a way out.

    It doesn’t. But actually reading the text of the Constitution isn’t what we pay all these fancy judges in their black robes to do, domo. We give them lifetime appointments so they can commune with the ineffable, the better to discern emanations of penumbras.

    Of course, the argument can also be made that the Emoluments Clause refers only to male lawmakers, and thus Hillary! is free of its constraints.

  24. I’m still hoping for world where no one cares about skin color,

    Right. Like people will voluntarily give up their victimhood. That’s a good one.

  25. Reading the text, it surely doesn’t seem like the olde const. offers a paycut as a way out.

    Sure it does. You can’t take a position that ends up with an increase in pay. The positions of Cabinet are way up in the SES world, so there are any number of manipulations they can make to make sure it doesn’t result in a pay increase.

  26. Byrd and Kennedy had the fish, duh.

  27. I mean, seriously, if I had a list of old fucks in government, not that I want ’em dead, mind you, but, you know, a list of old fucks in government who if they died it wouldn’t be the end of the world, I think Byrd and Kennedy would be up there near the top.

    You know, like that Madoff guy? …except he wasn’t in government.

  28. Reading the text, it surely doesn’t seem like the olde const. offers a paycut as a way out.

    If she’s earning the old salary, the salary hasn’t been increased. So now we get into a semantic discussion about the phrase “…were increased.”

    The proper response to a stalemated semantic discussion about the text of the Constitution is to look at the intent of the framers. In this case, the intent was to prevent legislators from creating, or featherbedding, a position and then jumping into it.

  29. I’ve always wondered which half was which, upper, lower, left or right? Or maybe on the bias?

  30. The proper response to a stalemated semantic discussion about the text of the Constitution is to look at the intent of the framers.

    Except when it comes to that pesky second amendment. At that point, whistling past a graveyard is the preferred approach.

  31. Well, the text says that the person can’t fill the position – not that the person can’t take advantage of the increase. The intent seems to prohibit the person from the office – not the cash.

    Not like semantic discussions, stale and otherwise, haven’t dominated many aspects of constitutional law. I in no way believe this will prevent Hills from taking office – I merely use it as a means to document agile willingness of the Dems to freely bend constitutional prohibitions to serve their purposes.

  32. if you want to split Heirs..he’s half American half Kenyan.

  33. domo,

    The intent is to keep government officials from taking advantage of their position to enrich themselves. No?

    The mechanism by which they attempt to remedy this problem is to forbid people from voting to increase the pay of a position, then taking that position, thus taking advantage of the higher pay.

  34. Except when it comes to that pesky second amendment.

    Uh, yeah, no one ever talks about the intent of the framers when it comes to gun rights.

    Certainly, no one ever debates how the framers thought about the militia, or what “well-regulated” meant. No sirree.

  35. Thats one way to interpret intent – another would be that they actually mean to prohibit the person from taking office: to encourage the separation of powers strictly. Notice the text doesn’t say the person couldn’t have voted for the increase – it says the salary couldn’t have been increased during their time in office. In any case, lowering the salary ( a legislative action) is a legislative solution to a constituional prohibition. Again, I’m playing devils advocate here – hearts not really in it – but you cant just trump the constitution by redefining the words by statute.

  36. too early to give the win to The Extispicator?

    Perhaps at the time. But I belive Extispicator’s…

    Brandybuck –

    Which is why Byrd only collapsed today instead of instant death.

    …seals the win.

  37. “Correction, Obama is the first half-black president. Or half-white, if you prefer. I’m still hoping for world where no one cares about skin color, ”
    Remember the Star Trek episode where one guy was white on the right and blac on the left and wash chasing the other guy who was black on the right and white on the left.
    Obama can show unity and diversity at the same time by announcing he would make one side black and the other side white and he would switch it back and forth every other day.
    He could even add top and bottom and or quadrants.
    With the upcoming HDTV he should seriously think about it because the makeup will cover up all the old zit marks.

  38. domo,

    another would be that they actually mean to prohibit the person from taking office: to encourage the separation of powers strictly.

    How does allowing Congressman to hold cabinet posts, but only when the salary hasn’t changed, promote separation of powers? How does a higher salary relate to separation of powers?

  39. Class all the way. Typical.

  40. Bah – I’ll yield. I was kind of hoping some tinfoil hat poster would take up the fight for my entertainment.

  41. Maybe Hillary could collect a bonus at the end of her tour of duty, if she did a really good job, solved the Israeli-Palistinean dilemma and other things (Dalfur/Somalia/etc). Or are bonuses not in order these days? Put up some benchmarks and wait and see.

  42. If she’s earning the old salary, the salary hasn’t been increased. So now we get into a semantic discussion about the phrase “…were increased.”

    That would be an odd discussion to have, since the phrase “were increased” doesn’t appear in the Emoluments Clause, which reads:

    “No Senator or Representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time.”

    So, if the emoluments of an office “shall have been increased” during a Senators term, the Senator may not hold that office “during the time for which he was elected.

    That means a rollback in the pay doesn’t clear the way, because the emoluments have, in fact, been increased during the Senator’s term in office, regardless of whether they were subsequently reduced.

  43. Uh, yeah, no one ever talks about the intent of the framers when it comes to gun rights.

    Certainly, no one ever debates how the framers thought about the militia, or what “well-regulated” meant. No sirree.

    Horseshit, joe. We gun nuts quote them all the time on what they meant by the militia and so forth. Its the gun controllers who can’t find contemporaneous authority for the collective rights view.

  44. That means a rollback in the pay doesn’t clear the way, because the emoluments have, in fact, been increased during the Senator’s term in office, regardless of whether they were subsequently reduced.

    Have they actually been increased if she’s paid the old salary, though? That’s the question. Apparently, it’s one of those questions that has a single obvious answer, even though it has been answered the opposite manner every time it’s come up.

    Its the gun controllers who can’t find contemporaneous authority for the collective rights view. So now you’ve changed the statement from “don’t consider the original intent” to “do consider the original intent, but I don’t find their reasoning compelling.”

    What sort of combination of arrogance and fanaticism does it take to convince one’s self that arguments one doesn’t like are not only wrong, but haven’t even been made?

  45. *Yay*…

  46. Interesting points, joe and domo. This was a huge issue during the Constitutional Convention, believe it or not. If you consult your copies of Madison’s notes, you will see that they spent much of August 14, 1787, discussing this issue.

    The original form of the clause (included in the Virginia Plan and adopted by the Convention) was to make Congressmen ineligible for any executive office for the duration of their entire term, whether served or not, plus for 1 year afterward. The fear, clearly, was that appointment to office would act as a sort of legal bribe that Presidents could give to Legislators, and that Legislators could solicit from Presidents.

    This was amended from ineligibility to the milder rule that we see today, because most people at the Convention decided that the best candidates for higher office will be found in Congress. They figured that Cabinet officials and Ambassadors (a very important position in the days before rapid communication) would probably come from Congress more often than not.

    It seems that the Convention attendees did not want ineligibility, but they did want to avoid the possibility of gross corruption, so they adopted the pay limitation while getting rid of the originally proposed total limitation.

    The issue all along was not really separation of powers, but the avoidance of corruption.

  47. Alton, cool – thanks for that. So it seems that something akin to my interpretation, while in the minority, was actually represented at the convention. Sweet…

  48. John Kerry said Senator Byrd was “concerned about what was happening with Senator Kennedy.” I believe this is code for “When Senator Byrd saw Senator Kennedy take a seizure, he filled his pants.”

  49. Shit, they’re on to us!

  50. Lefiti,
    Are you the real Lefiti or a spoof? I can’t tell.

  51. Doesn’t Ted Kennedy have brain cancer?

  52. domo:

    It is interesting to note that the person who seemed to be most responsible for removing the “ineligibility” provision, Charles Pinckney, was serving in the Senate when he was appointed Ambassador to Spain by Thomas Jefferson as a reward for campaigning for Jefferson in 1800.

  53. Byrd fills his pants every day.

    He was heard to say “The new President is near” before he collapsed.
    Or something like that.

  54. Translation: A lawmaker cannot fill a position if the salary for that position has been raised during that lawmaker’s term in office.”

    I dunno.

    The position of Secretary Of State wasn’t created during Clinton’s term, it’s been around for a couple hundred years. The VACANCY was created during her term, but that’s not the same thing. The idea being Congress can’t create Executive-level positions for themselves.

  55. Have they actually been increased if she’s paid the old salary, though? That’s the question.

    I suppose you could say that the phrase “shall have been increased during such time” should be read as “shall have been increased as of the time the Senator takes the office”, but I don’t think those two phrases are really equivalent. The Constitution says “during”, which I think means “at any point,” not “at the end of.”

    The dictionary (I know, I know) gives two definitions – “at some time” and “throughout the duration of”. Clearly, the second is not what is intended in the emoluments clause, so we are left with “at some time.”

    If you work for a company, and at the end of the first year you get a raise, but at the end of the second year your pay gets cut (so you quit), did you get a raise “during” your time at the company. I think you did, even though your pay is the same when you quit as when you started.

  56. domo,

    This issue has come up several times in American history, and was solved by keeping the SoS’s salary at the old level.

    …..then to be followed by a vote in congress to increase the salary to even higher levels a few months later, no doubt.

  57. Can’t they just pay Clinton with young lesbians?

    I wish I got paid that way…

  58. I wonder, why would anyone leave a safe senate seat from a big wealthy state like NY to be the Sec. of State (or any cabinet position) and mouth someone else’s policies? It boggles my mind really.

  59. Obama will be half-black when he needs to be black, and half-white when he needs to eb white.

  60. Bush is laughing his ass off right now. Good for him!

  61. best Reason post title ever

  62. What’s the fascination among conservatives about Byrd being a former Klansman?

    Does it have anything to do with their movement embarrisingly being on the wrong side of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s? I think it would be better for them to ask: what about our philosophy caused us to be on the wrong side of those issues back then, address that and move on.

    I actually saw Newt Gingrich just say “conservatives were morally awol during that period it was a great mistake.” That kind of thing would seem better.

  63. 2 in one day. Not bad. That’s about the only way to get rid of a Senator…

    But possibly getting rid of Stevens, Byrd, and Kennedy in the course of 2 months? That’s awesome.

  64. http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/

    Whitehouse OMB website mispells new President’s name.

    Right click on the picture to see what they really think of him.

    “GOLD Jerry. Comedy gold.”

  65. Seek, and ye shall find (answers to your questions about the emoluments clause)

    http://volokh.com/posts/1227548910.shtml

  66. Bryd collapsed when he realized that nice young black man wasn’t really his waiter.

  67. Senator Byrd did not fill his pants. But he loaded up his Depends pretty much.

  68. MNG – NY isn’t a wealthy state anymore. It is burdened by a stunningly huge bureaucracy, (including a veritable army of state troopers), entitlements up the ass, and now the cash cow otherwise known as excise fees, outrageous salaries and transaction levies from Wall Street is gone.

    And don’t even ask about upstate’s mass exodus of college grads. If you live north of Poughkeepsie and there isn’t a state prison in town you get to choose between some cheesy Canadian (Quebequois) manufacturer that pays $9.00/hour or wiping some old state retirees ass for $8.00/hour.

    And now, the state infamous for its Constitutional “three men in a room” closed door governance, has three Democrats holding those three positions.

    Dark Days to follow for the Empire State.

  69. The purge begins….

  70. Weez soon ta see da demise of Robert “Tweet Tweet” Byrd.

  71. Uh, yeah, no one ever talks about the intent of the framers when it comes to gun rights. Certainly, no one ever debates how the framers thought about the militia, or what “well-regulated” meant. No sirree.

    Nor does anyone talk about Article 1, Section 8, or about the framers’ intent in requiring that only gold and silver be money.

    So, how’s that paper money experiment going?

  72. Well, I certainly hope that someone called for aid for the senior Senator from Massachussets more quickly than the junior Senator from that state did in ’69 for Ms. Kopechne.

    Yes, yes, I know it is so, so, insensitive to mention vehicular manslughter and willful negligence resulting in wrongful death after forty years, when the manslaughterer has a brain tumor and is famous, or is at least a famous Democrat, but some us have are just maniacal about having manslaughterers fully acknowledge the nature and wrongness of their manslaughtering prior to remaining silent about the manslaughter. Go figure.

  73. MNG – A really good way to stir up the hive is to confuse libertarians for conservatives.

  74. “Does it have anything to do with their movement embarrisingly being on the wrong side of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s? I think it would be better for them to ask: what about our philosophy caused us to be on the wrong side of those issues back then, address that and move on.”

    Republicans were on the right side of the civil rights debate.
    It was the Dems that did everything to prevent its passage.

    In the House of Representatives, 80% of Republicans (138 for, 38 against) voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964, while only 61% of Democrats (152 for, 96 against) voted for it.

    In the Senate, 69% of Democrats (46 for, 21 against) voted for the Act while 82% of Republicans did (27 for, 6 against). All southern Democrats voted against the Act.

    The Democrats filibustered 83 days against the bill.
    Albert Gore Sr, J. William Fulbright and former Klansman Robert Byrd were three of the Democrats who opposed the bill.
    Byrd filibustered for more than 14 hours and 13 minutes straight. He also opposed the nominations of the Supreme Court’s only two black justices, Thurgood Marshall and Clarence Thomas.

    St. John F Kennedy voted against Eisenhower’s 1957 Civil Rights Act.

    It was Democrats like Lester Maddox, Orval Faubus and George Wallace, governors of Georgia, Arkansas and Alabama, who blocked the schoolhouse doors.

    While Governor of South Carolina, Sen. Ernest Hollings oversaw the raising of the Confederate flag over the Statehouse.

    Oh yeah. Democrat Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black was also a Klansman.

    Democrats opposed abolition.
    Democrats supported slavery and fought to expand it.
    Democrats supported and passed the Fugitive Slave Laws of 1793 & 1854.
    Democrats supported and passed the Missouri Compromise to protect slavery.
    Democrats supported and passed the Kansas Nebraska Act to expand slavery.
    Democrats supported and backed the Dred Scott Decision.
    Democrats supported and passed Jim Crow Laws.
    Democrats supported and passed Black Codes.
    Democrats opposed educating blacks.
    Democrats opposed the Reconstruction Act of 1867.
    Democrats opposed the Freedman’s Bureau as it pertained to blacks.
    Democrats opposed the Emancipation Proclamation.
    Democrats opposed the 13th , 14th, and 15th Amendments to end slavery, make black citizens and give blacks the right to vote.
    Democrats opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1866.
    Democrats opposed the Civil Right Act of 1875 and had it overturned by U.S. Supreme Court.
    Democrats opposed the 1957 Civil Rights Acts.
    Democrats argued against the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Acts.
    Democrats argued against the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Acts.
    Democrats voted against the 1972 Equal Employment Opportunity Act.
    Democrats supported and backed Judge John Ferguson in the case of Plessy v Ferguson
    Democrats supported the School Board of Topeka Kansas in the case of Brown v The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas.
    Southern Democrats opposed desegregation and integration.
    Democrats started the Ku Klux Klan.

    Who’s on the wrong side?
    It’s not the Republicans.

  75. MNG – I’ll bet you are also waiting on the NYT to apologize for white washing Stalin’s murder of millions and the Dem’s destruction of the black family with the massively stupid Great Society. Right?

    You see, the issue is hypocrisy. It’s kind of hard to be taken seriously when you smugly accuse current Republicans of being racist (which is a lie and a smear) while Dems happily hang out with the Grand Kleagle in their own caucus.

    Then we can move on and talk about Eugenics as part of the “Progressive” movement, etc. etc.

  76. Well, I didn’t say Republicans, did I? I said conservatives. And seeing as how the Democratic Party had a ton of conservatives once it’s not very helpful to say “the Democrats were the party of the Confederacy, and supportes of slavery and…”

    The Democratic Party as an organization has changed its position on a great deal of things over time and from its beginning was not supposed to be a party of unified ideology but of sectional independence and political dominance, so tarring the modern Party with the positions of the past is really stupid.

    But in the 1960’s it was liberals who fought on the right side and conservatives either stayed silent or fought on the wrong side. By 1972 the Democratic Party as an organization had largely been taken over by liberals of the type that dominate the party now and has been run according to their views ever since.

    And the former Conservatives who opposed civil rights either had to strongly recant their positions or leave and become Republicans….

    Blacks are’nt fools or victims of some massive false conscioussness. They know liberals have been there for them and still are and conservatives, not so much. That’s why they vote the way they do overwhelmingly.

  77. Next they’ll bring out the “Lincoln was a Republican” canard. Like Lincoln could exist in their party now.

    It’s hilarious watching the conservatives deny that Nixon coopted the Dixiecrats (Trent Lott was raised a Democrat) and that their coalition has been largely based on Lyndon Johnson’s self-acknowledged loss of the South due to civil rights. It’s pretty disingenuous of the conservatives to pretend that Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” had nothing to do with the rise of conservatism in the aftermath of Goldwater’s historic loss.

  78. Like people will voluntarily give up their victimhood.

    To be fair, I’d say that Obama did exactly that. Or at least, he didn’t start out on a Jackson-Sharpton style “vote for me, I’m black and you’re guilty if you don’t” kind of schtick.

    -jcr

  79. If I have to read just one more headline in the MSM that tells us just how great and awesome Obama really is, I’m going to go find me an MSM reporter and barf all over him. And then get myself taken the hospital.

    If only I was an important enough Person to make it a historic barf.

    If only.

  80. Lincoln could exist in their party now.

    Sure he could. Lincoln was a corporate lawyer who made a career of shoveling money to his backers. He also issued funny money with no backing, so he’d fit right in with Nixon.

    -jcr

  81. btw, I’m really happy that a black man got into the White House.

    It’s just everything else about Obama that I can’t stand.

    In our last presidential election we got to choose between a socialist and a raving, parroting lunatic (this last being McCain, who parroted Obama’s socialism in the hope that people would vote for him).

    What the history books are going to say is that America was once a great place. But We The People just couldn’t take it…..

  82. I like to give Robert Byrd analingus. But you libertarian fuckwits wouldn’t know the joy of giving a “Byrdy” now would you?

  83. “Blacks are’nt fools or victims of some massive false conscioussness. They know liberals have been there for them and still are and conservatives, not so much. That’s why they vote the way they do overwhelmingly.”

    With preferences, giveaway programs and money. They’re voting with their wallets.

    Nice spelling, BTW.

  84. It’s kind of hard to be taken seriously when you smugly accuse current Republicans of being racist (which is a lie and a smear) while Dems happily hang out with the Grand Kleagle in their own caucus.

    Sort of like Republicans happily hang out with Stalinists like Iriving Kristol and Whittaker Chambers?

  85. It was a cold day out yesterday.

    Senate Darwinism?

  86. “No Senator or Representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time.”

    So, if the emoluments of an office “shall have been increased” during a Senators term, the Senator may not hold that office “during the time for which he was elected.

    That means a rollback in the pay doesn’t clear the way, because the emoluments have, in fact, been increased during the Senator’s term in office, regardless of whether they were subsequently reduced.

    Y’know, by a perfectly strict reading, wouldn’t this result in a lifetime bar to serving if the pay was increased? It doesn’t say “if the most recent increase occurred while he served,” it says “if the pay was increased while he served.”

    I’m just asking.

  87. Byrd quit the Klan in 1943, you cocksucker.

  88. Aahh, it’s Tuesday so it must be “Burnish one’s PC Credentials Day” in Cosmoland. And Sen. Byrd with falling ill, that meant it was good time to dredge up his past involvement in the Ku Klux Klan and take a pot-shot at him so the rest of Cosmoland knows we’re not racists here at Reason. After all we can’t let people forget Sen. Byrd’s guilt by association now now can we? We certainly do so when Ron Paul’s
    name comes up.

    Byrd never denied he joined the Klan, doing so early in his political career to get votes. He left the organization, said he was sorry for joining and acknowledged he made a mistake. Most U.S. Senators over the years have never held this against him. In fact they even let him serve as Majority Leader in the 1980s. But in the eyes of the Cosmo libertarians, apparently this mistake must remain a Mark of Cain on Sen. Byrd so that when the time come to remind the world that libertarianism is not racism (and why it would be I haven’t the foggiest idea) the Cosmos can bring it up. As I said, it was Tuesday.

    Amazing isn’t it that Sen. Byrd’s far past sins are more relevent to the Cosmos than his pork-barrelling? I guess to them a man’s past has to follow him around, unless its an acid trip.

  89. Teddy was carried out on a stretcher? I didn’t know that they served alcohol at inaugurations.

  90. “we can’t let people forget Sen. Byrd’s guilt by association now now can we? We certainly do so when Ron Paul’s name comes up.”

    1.) It’s not guilt by association if he actually made the choice to be a Klan member in his youth. It’s different from Obama knowing William Ayres or even from the Pope being a Hitler youth. The circumstances are certainly amusing – but I don’t think people actually believe he’s so racist that he fainted when a black man in his own party that he endorsed became president – don’t get your panties in a twist.

    2.) Many, many of us (including Reason magazine) DID actually hold Ron Paul’s feet to the fire for the racist newsletters. I didn’t vote for him in the primaries primarily for that very reason, and instead voted for Obama, who I saw and still see as the superior candidate over Hillary, in the split Texas primary/caucus. Not that I actually like Obama or anything…

  91. “to be a Klan member in his youth” –> “to be a Klan member as an adult.” He was 24 when he joined – of a age to be considered reasonable (as opposed to the Pope).

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