It's so interesting how differently people see things! I love this!
There are many who feel like you -- as evidenced by the title of the diary. There are many who feel opposite. That's the point of this diary -- Tom Rinaldo details perfectly (for me) why those of us who don't see the Dem field as a high caliber group feel that way.
You've nailed for me, Tom Rinaldo. I don't know if it's the nightmare we've been living through the past 6 years or what that's causing people to accept the current candidates as "the best" the Dems can offer, but I am among those who are underwhelmed. At this point if I had to pick one, it would be Kucinich -- but everyone and their uncle knows he won't win in the primaries, let alone the GE.
My biggest fear is that Democrats are feeling so confident -- thinking that because of the disgust and disappointment in the populace that pick-a-Dem, any Dem will win. I don't believe this is true.
With the finally unveiled election manipulation the Republics have perfected, proving it was not tin-foil hat paranoia -- from disenfranchisement of minority voters, to hackable e-vote machines -- and a Congress that moves slower than molassas in January, which pretty much ensures the problems won't be "fixed" by November, 2008 -- the only way Democrats are going to win is with a landslide. I honestly don't see any of the current bunch being able to pull that off.
I believe Clark is our best hope. I would love Gore, and work my ars off for him as well, but I'm not sure he'd pull in the Independents and moderate Republics the way Clark would.
Clark just said again yesterday, he has not ruled out running -- "it's still an option," I think he said to Ed Schultz. So until he says NO, I'm patiently waiting for the best.
Thanks, Tom Rinaldo. You've clearly spelled out the shortcomings of the current candidates without smearing anyone, and that is a rare talent that I hope everyone can appreciate.
My first thoughts on reading the transcript was that people on kos and here would be tearing into Clark because he's not saying "out now." I have a feeling not many have listened to it, or read the transcript -- too much time and energy is being dumped into the extended, for-corporate profit 2 year presidential primary. Where, btw, I have yet to hear any of the current candidates speak about Iraq with the depth of knowledge and understanding that Clark does.
I'm a longtime Clark supporter and even for me, it was hard to take what he said. I would love for our troops to get the hell out of there and come home now, but after listening to Clark for the past 4 years, I know better than to question his judgement and views on FP issues -- he's been right every single time in his predictions of what would happen if we did such as such, and what we should be doing. As much as I hated hearing what he had to say, I am grateful we have him out there working behind the scenes to set policy, inform the uninformed, and doing everything he can to STOP THE NEXT WAR BEFORE IT STARTS.
I believe you are correct. I also believe any candidate who tells us they will have ALL troops out in a year or two will not be able to deliver on that promise, but it will certainly win them the nomination.
I think it's too early to settle down with one candidate for the entire party this far out. So many things can happen between now and next summer, and if we have our candidate set in stone by February next, that's it. We're stuck. I think the spoils of having the process begin this early go to Corporate Press and campaign staff -- no one else much benefits at this point.
To me, most of the current candidates are little more than career politicians who will say anything to be president. Some of them talk pretty, but as they say, actions speak louder than words.
I'm patiently waiting to see who else enters the race because of the current crop, I'm unimpressed. If I absolutely had to pick one of them it would be Kucinich, although I realize he hasn't a snowball's chance.
From all the information I've seen it's very confusing.
From some things I've read it sounds like he didn't want to vote for it -- his conscience told him not to vote for it -- but he based his decision on how he would "look" to the American public, instead. Then he goes even further to look tough and co-sponsors LIEberman's resolution.
But then, I think he also still stands by what he said when he co-sponsored and voted for the IWR -- that he honestly did feel Saddam was a threat that had to be dealt with immediately because he talked to people he trusted and believed them.
Then again, maybe he felt Saddam was an immediate threat up until he apologized, which is when he had realized he'd made a mistake thinking/believing that.
See, my problem with Edwards is no matter what the truth of his decision was -- either he showed very poor judgement, or he put his political aspirations ahead of everything else. Neither of those things qualify him to be president of this country, nor to be a Senator, Governor, or any other position that puts him in a place of representing us.
Edwards said yesterday that he was unaware of the push by the firm, Fortress Investment Group, into subprime lending and that he wishes he had asked more questions before taking the job. The former senator from North Carolina said he had asked Fortress officials whether it was involved in predatory lending practices before taking the job in 2005 and was assured it was not.
Subprime loans are aimed at buyers with poor credit histories and charge higher rates because of the risks. Some loans carry fees and large rate increases that are hidden from a home buyer.
~ snip ~
"Those are the things I remember," he said. "They may have told me more." Had he learned that Fortress owned a loan servicer with a history of predatory lending practices, he said, "I would have asked some very specific questions about it."
As for his spending money, I honestly don't care and believe people can and should spend their money however they want. I just said that it may be have been smart for him to chill on the extravagant purchases temporarily -- you don't agree and that's fine.
Although I'm not an Obama supporter, I don't see it as a fair comparison equating voting to start a war to voting for funding a war that is already in progress, although I do agree that Obama's judgement is questionable on FP issues.
And I'm not a Republic criticizing Edwards for wanting to make things better. I'm a former Green turned Democrat in 2000 who is waiting for a candidate I trust on both domestic and fp issues.
If Clark or Gore don't enter, I'll vote D in November 2008, but unfortunately I don't see any of the current Democratic candidates winning.
What I see is lack of good judgement. Too many times to ignore.
I'm honestly sorry you have to defend him, because you're right -- I don't like him. It didn't start out that way, but honestly having the liberal blogosphere willing to make excuse after excuse for him and justify every past action and bad decision has actually turned me from merely not supporting him to actively not liking him.
Put things in perspective -- if a Republic did any of these things, you know everyone would be screaming bloody murder. While none of the above is wrong, none of it indicates (to me) sound judgement, or even common sense.
During periods when they're out of office, many politicians arrange jobs for loyal former aides. After his unsuccessful 2004 Vice-Presidential bid, John Edwards came up with a creative approach: He started a nonprofit dedicated to fighting poverty. Rather than recruiting outside poverty experts, the Center for Promise & Opportunity became a perch for several once and future Edwards staff members.
The line between an ordinary nonprofit and a group formed to test the political waters can be blurry. But legally there's a big difference. Ordinary nonprofits aren't subject to rules on disclosing donors and limiting contributions; exploratory political groups are. No one has challenged the status of the Edwards center, and experts in the field say it may technically pass muster as an ordinary nonprofit. But at a minimum, it appears to have helped Edwards prepare for the 2008 Presidential race.
Edwards ... launched the center in 2005 at the Washington (D.C.) address of his PAC. The nonprofit raised $1.3 million in 2005, the only year for which data are available, and spent some of it on a national speaking tour for Edwards. It also spent $259,000 on consultants. The campaign declines to disclose the donors or consultants. The center is now defunct, and some of its key leaders are now aiding the Edwards campaign. The Edwards campaign says the Center is not connected to a separate Edwards anti-poverty effort at the University of North Carolina.
Edwards' team defends the center. "Obviously, some of the people who had worked for Senator Edwards in government and on his campaign continued to work with him in this effort," says spokesman Eric Schultz. "John Edwards and everyone involved is proud of the organization's work." That work included running a foundation that awarded $300,000 in college aid to 86 North Carolina students in 2006. The Edwards campaign put BusinessWeek in touch with recipient Tony Tyson, 18, who finished his freshman year at North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University. Tyson calls the scholarship "a golden opportunity." When he returns to campus this fall, he adds, he'll volunteer for Edwards' campaign.
Earlier this month it was reported Edwards made nearly $500,000 as a consultant to a hedge fund.
He defended this on the grounds that he took the job to learn how financial markets relate to poverty. He said he didn't know the fund was involved in subprime lending. If he was there to learn about poverty and finance, how did he miss that?
Just a few too many questionable judgement calls for me to trust this man being leader of the free world.
His platform is poverty, yet it didn't occur to him that maybe putting a curb on his spending while he's running for president would have been better than the over the top haircuts and house? I'm not saying he shouldn't spend his money however he wishes -- I'm just saying he doesn't appear to get it that to some people it's going to appear hypocritical.
Well, I forgot to include: my endgame is to play the game until my life reaches it's endgame. Even if we get to a place we can breathe a sigh of relief (and I agree it will be around 2012), the fundies and neocons are ever ready to take over and must be kept in their corner forevermore.
I'm a child of the '60's and I was NOT involved in any way shape or form before 2000. My attitude and belief was that politics was a game played by the elite and was nothing but a show to make the masses think we had a say in our government. I didn't believe we did.
When I saw the SCOTUS hand Jr. the presidency in 2000 I knew that I had to get involved. That even if it is a game, I had to start playing because the bullies and thugs had taken the ball and were changing the rules with no one there even trying to stop them -- or so it seemed.
The thing that really solidified it for me was when I went to hear Michael Moore speak back in 2003. I was swaying between supporting Kucinich and Dean and MM came onstage talking about this General guy. I was very interested and went home and googled Wes Clark and started reading. Next I joined the Santa Cruz for Clark group, and that was when I knew I would never turn back.
I now feel that if we the people don't stay involved, don't actively play the game, we deserve whatever we get.
The biggest challenge facing us now that we're paying attention is the media. So many of the things we have to fight for would never have happened if we had an actual "Free" press. We know so much about so many things that are just ignored by the Corporate owned and controlled press -- probably the biggest issue being our elections, now controlled by private companies forcing hackable machines down our throats.
Well, I could go on and on but you all know the problems we face due to Corpress -- heck, that's why most of us are HERE on these blogs.
So, yeah, I'm involved and will stay involved. I will always keep a watchful eye on my congresscritters, I will keep writing to them and the media, I will stay active in my local Dem group, working on local issues and races. I will continue to bug my friends, sending them information and petitions. I will continue promoting and supporting our online investigative journalists doing the job of being the media. And when Wes Clark joins the presidential race, I will work my ass off to get him elected.