Democrats & Liberals Archives

DeLay's First Smart Move In Quite a While

I guess you all have heard about this by now. Tom DeLay is finally resigning. If you want to read a strong emphasis on the word finally, I guess you wouldn’t be far off. I don’t write to gloat. Far from it. If Tom DeLay had been a better leader, I might have found this a sad day, regardless of the party affiliation. And no, I’m not lying. I appreciate leaders who know how to put the good of the country above and beyond the good of the party.

It's instructive to read a quote from his announcement:

I refuse to allow liberal Democrats an opportunity to steal this seat with a negative personal campaign.[...]

DeLay said he is stepping down because he wanted the race in his Houston-area district to focus on the issues people care about -- "not a campaign focused solely as a referendum on me."

"My love for the Republican Party has played no small part in this decision," he said.

Democrats retaking Congress would be disastrous, he said.

CNN

The unfortunate fact is that DeLay's performance in office has become precisely that, and by his own doing. If it seems like a Democrat is likely to take -take, not steal- the seat come November, then it's only because this longtime congressman, who has survived numerous other elections, has failed finally to maintain the support of his constituents.
DeLay should have resigned the moment he was indicted. He didn't have to confess his guilt. He could have quite easily just said that regardless of the political consequences, it would be unseemly for a sitting member of the House of Representatives to continue to serve under an indictment. Taking him back, if he beat the charges, would be the voter's decision.

But DeLay has never trusted the voters to that extent. He believe that if he remained in office, those Evil Democrats would be able to wage a successful negative campaign to unseat him. Despite what DeLay says, no election can be run without becoming a referendum on the person running. This is why negative campaigning works and is used: it does matter to voters what kind of person goes into office. Negative campaigns can be dishonest, can distort the truth, or overemphasize but they still operate on a basic level within the parameters of Democracy. The only thing you can do is give voters the better, more convincing side of the story, if you can.

Tom DeLay doesn't have that option. He wasn't merely part of the culture of corruption, but one of its prime motivating elements. Worse yet, and this is probably what undermined his conservative support sufficiently to convince him to quit, under his leadership, the House became both more radicalized and less conservative. It became a rubber stamp for a President, and willingly gave up much of its oversight capability, much of its ability to check and balance the executive branch. Under his leadership, government did not shrink, but instead grew. Under his leadership, taxes were cut again and again, but deficits grew as this body holding the purse-strings of the nation again and again failed to rein in its spending.

Though his party flew the banner of states rights on many occasions, they willfully interfered in a number of state matters, from education, to Terri Schiavo, to the redistricting of his Home State. Again and again he pressured the Republicans in that state into politically ruinous confrontations to make more conservative an already conservative plan. There he committed what might have been his fatal error, which was not only using corporate money to fund elections in Texas, but deliberately engaging in operations to conceal the true origins of the money used.

Regardless, the act itself was an affront to Democracy, not to mention the State's Rights he claimed to adore. His problem? That voters in districts that were drawn to favor Republicans exercized their choice and voted Democrats into the legislature. They voted for Bush the last go-round, but it seems they liked their old representatives.

To make this come to pass, DeLay had to engage in such blatant Gerrymandering that districts stretched from one city to another in several cases. I believe my district, Ted Poe's current seat, stretches all the way from North Harris County (Houston's home county) to Beaumont, a distance comparable to the stretch between Philadelphia and Washington, D.C..

His lack of faith in voters, I believe, is what inspired a lack of faith in his leadership. His problem is not isolated, amongst his Republican colleagues. By pushing far-right policies on a moderate nation, they have demonstrated that lack of faith, too. By betraying their principles in deed while they made the same promises year after year, they demonstrated that lack of faith. By starting a bitter battle of partisanship to scare up more support from the voters, they demonstrated that lack of faith.

They demonstrated it by keeping so many secrets from the people, by supporting a president in his multiple follies, and allowing that president to take their authority away so brazenly. They demonstrated it, ultimately, by considering their own political survival more important than the integrity of their body and our Democracy.

The irony is, ultimately, that in the process of continually trying to save their political backsides in the stead of responsible behavior, they've ultimately doomed their political fortunes to decline. Americans are a pragmatic, moderate people, and they will not long tolerate extremist in power who aren't straight with them, don't respect their will, and who fail to run this country in a responsible competent fashion. My only hope is that the Democrats will not follow in their error, should we win back the majorities here.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at April 4, 2006 10:14 AM
Comments
Comment #137889

Stephen, interesting analysis, but way too complicated. Texans for the most part are staunch law and order folks. DeLay stretched and broke the laws of Texas. Texans don’t believe anyone should be above their laws. It really is that simple. And the poll numbers went south for that reason. Money and power became more important to DeLay than the laws of the State of Texas which exist to preserve the peace and domestic tranquility of this great state. “Don’t Mess With Texas” may be gone from roadside signs, but, not from the minds of Texan voters.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 4, 2006 11:27 AM
Comment #137907

He finally won’t be representing the district I live in. I’m wondering who the republican party will choose as their candidate.

Posted by: SirisC at April 4, 2006 12:14 PM
Comment #137914

Who will end up behind bars first the hammer or REP. MCKINNEY?Just wondering.

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 12:29 PM
Comment #137925

Stephen,

…By betraying their principles in deed while they made the same promises year after year, they demonstrated that lack of faith. By starting a bitter battle of partisanship to scare up more support from the voters, they demonstrated that lack of faith.

They demonstrated it by keeping so many secrets from the people, by supporting a president in his multiple follies, and allowing that president to take their authority away so brazenly. They demonstrated it, ultimately, by considering their own political survival more important than the integrity of their body and our Democracy.

ABSOLUTELY!! Unfortunately, I am afraid the right extremists (not the republican party per se)haven’t yet taken the step to stop and re-evaluate the monster they have created, fed, nurtured and grown. I don’t think the rich corporate elitists that have this government tied to their purse strings are going to give-up so easily.

I think Tom Delay will be portrayed as a victim of (those awful, god-hating Libs again) leftie-liberals who would stop at nothing short of bringing down this noble, loyal, America-loving Patriot.

Americans are a pragmatic, moderate people, and they will not long tolerate extremist in power who aren’t straight with them, don’t respect their will, and who fail to run this country in a responsible competent fashion.

I hope, as you say, Texans and the rest of the country are ready to open their eyes and see what we, the US, have become both nationally and globally. We (collectively) have allowed it, condoned it and even more, we have supported it. In other words voters, WE ARE ALL RESPONSIBLE!!

We must be much wiser and much stronger. We must INSIST ALL of our elected officials be continually held under close scrutiny. We must STOP blindly supporting and defending the actions of an abominably corrupt government and hold our leaders accountable not only for their actions, but also for remaining complacent and allowing the monster to continue to grow.

We can’t allow fear of 9/11 make us such cowards that we lay down and take it from our own. Instead of sticking together, we have allowed dissenters to be considered TRAITORS! That’s right, OUR OWN Citizens as TRAITORS!!!
We have our Liberties only because of the BRAVERY and willingness of our ancestors to stand up to a wholly corrupt government.

I am Damn MAD and seriously disapointed in our nation, so as one who has always taken my right to vote seriously, and one who has voted diligently each election, I have a message to anyone running for office:

I will be watching!!!

Will you?

just my 2-cents worth,
sassyliberal

Posted by: sassyliberal at April 4, 2006 12:45 PM
Comment #137926

justwondering, my bet is McKinney. She doesn’t have near the financial backing of the Democrats that DeLay has from Republicans for legal stalls, tricks, maneuvers and (arr, arr) DeLaying tactics.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 4, 2006 12:46 PM
Comment #137928

sassyliberal, but will you vote out incumbents? There is no other way to hold politicians accountable.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 4, 2006 12:49 PM
Comment #137929

Sissyliberal the monster we created is called liberalism.Remember it infects the brain first then the spine.

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 12:50 PM
Comment #137932

Davidrremer give me a break what do you call al sharpton,JESSE JACKSON,DAYO MAN?

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 12:57 PM
Comment #137944

“Sissyliberal the monster we created is called liberalism”

It’s what this country was founded on, wonderboy.

Posted by: Norby at April 4, 2006 1:40 PM
Comment #137956

This country was founded on brave men norby those who fought for your right to be an idiot.

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 2:17 PM
Comment #137959

David,

sassyliberal, but will you vote out incumbents? There is no other way to hold politicians accountable.

You betcha!! I have already written to Mr. Robert C. Byrd and told him for his support of the Patriot Act, he can count himself out for my vote! Just a start too!


“justwondering,”

You wrote:

Sissyliberal the monster we created is called liberalism.Remember it infects the brain first then the spine.

You are SO Right!!! It does infect the brain first: The brain begins to clear from all the LIES, LIES and more LIES (fed to the public by low-life politicians on BOTH sides of the fence), the rhetoric, the discrimination, the name calling and the FEAR!
Then as you say it does infect the spine. One DEVELOPS a spine. It definitely takes courage to adre to stand up for what is right when you KNOW doing so means to be labeled “TRAITOR”, Communist, Socialist, Radical and MUCH worse. It takes a spine to speak out against the injustices being carried out, the loss of liberties, the burdens being placed on the average middle class workers, the loss of pensions, the division of our entire country, and MUCH MUCH more. It definitely takes an infected spine to stand up against the prejudice, hate, intolerance and exclusion of those who DARE to disagree with the powers that be. It takes guts to stand up and say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!

BELIEVE me “justwondering”, I’ve been called a lot worse than sissy. (Actually, I’ve been called sissy too. Since the birth of my younger sibling some, 40-something years ago.) Go ahead, say more… I learned a long time ago that:

1. Sticks and stones….(all that jazz)
2. People living in glass houses…
3. No matter how hard the name-caller tries,
no matter how loud they yell, they can
NEVER, NEVER make it true.

Norby,

It’s what this country was founded on, wonderboy.

Thanks for the defense, but un-necessary(to lower yourself to name-calling)

I consider it a badge of honor.

sassyliberal

Posted by: sassyliberal at April 4, 2006 2:29 PM
Comment #137968

Stephen, great post.
Sassy, you go girl!

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2006 3:06 PM
Comment #137972

Sassyliberal a girl? i would’ve never guessed.

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 3:18 PM
Comment #137975

“This country was founded on brave men norby those who fought for your right to be an idiot.

Posted by: justwondering at April 4, 2006 02:17 PM”

Hey WB manager, you’re wanted on isle 5, for a pricecheck on some Flamebait.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2006 3:25 PM
Comment #137986

Stephen, nice post as always. Can it be that we ‘muricans will finally get some real leaders? Hope hope.

Posted by: ray at April 4, 2006 4:01 PM
Comment #138063

Justwondering-
Don’t stop now. Go ahead, turn on the charm. I’m sure many real Americans out there would greatly appreciate more words comparing liberalism to some dark, nasty and evil thing.

Reality is, Liberalism is America’s consensus: secular authority, free speech - both polite and obnoxious (which we can all be thankful for), an insistence on social equality, and a love of this country that does not preclude recognition of it’s faults, or the faults of policymakers.

Of course, it’s unlikely you see things this way. Fear and loathing of liberals has become a pastime among the right. Worst yet, it’s become a blindspot, ensuring that when bad things happen and rightwing politicians are caught doing evil, the leaders of the GOP can always scapegoat the liberals as either those who tear down great men and women, or as the real cause or originators of the problem.

It’s like with children. If one always ends up getting blamed for mischief, the others can be spoiled brats, and just act like angels when the adults show up.

Trouble is, sooner or later the little angels get sloppy, and the circumstances begin to give lie to the unfair accusations made against the scapegoat.

It’s time for the voters, parents of the Republican party to start sending their little angels up to their room without dinner. That is, if they don’t want delinquents for children.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 4, 2006 10:31 PM
Comment #138067

Tom Delay lived up to his name.
He Delayed, and Delayed, and Delayed, until he could Delay no more.

But, watch. Even if Delay is convicted (perhaps, even plead guilty like Dan Rostenkowski), he’ll probably get a pardon (like the 140 felons pardoned by Clinton).

… but will you vote out incumbents? There is no other way to hold politicians accountable.

Yes.

  • We have tried this party, and that party.

  • We have tried conservatives, moderates, and liberals.

  • We have wallowed in the partisan warfare, and despised those that fuel it.

  • We have tried power and corruption, and we have forgotten transparency and accountability.

  • We have tried to live at the expense of everyone else, but complain about the danger of the growing deficits and National Debt.

  • We have tried to reduce waste and pork-barrel, but keep voting for those that bring the pork home, and bribe voters with the voters’ own money.
  • We have tried to ask government to provide for us from cradle to grave, but complain that bloated government meddles too much in our lives.

  • So, after we have tried everything else, why don’t we finally try the one simple, common-sense, no-brainer, non-partisan, honest, and responsible thing we were supposed to do all along?


  • Vote out all irresponsible incumbents, always, every election, until:
    • no more irresponsible incumbents exist,

    • government finally agrees to pass the many badly-needed, common-sense, responsible reforms that incumbent politicians have refused to pass for many decades,

    • and our many pressing problems are finally addressed, instead of being ignored and allowed to grow in number and severity, threatening the future and security of the nation.

_________________________________________
Please Stop Repeat Offenders.
Don’t Re-Elect Them !
_________________________________________

Posted by: d.a.n at April 4, 2006 10:45 PM
Comment #138074

My district does not send irresponsible incumbants to Washington,thank you.

Posted by: BillS at April 4, 2006 11:20 PM
Comment #138079

BillS,
Who are your Senators and Representatives?

Posted by: d.a.n at April 4, 2006 11:43 PM
Comment #138127

BillS

It’s funny. “My district” never sends irresponsible incumbents to Washington. It’s always the other people who do that. There are 535 members of Congress, and to hear folks defend their own, it seems that there are no irresponsible incumbents to vote out. HA,HA!

Posted by: John Back at April 5, 2006 8:03 AM
Comment #138137

Haven’t you guys noticed that “justwondering” is “john counts?” He has learnt to Capitalise some letters - and he may be using a spell-checker now - but he’s still starting each new sentence without any spacing and he’s still spouting the “infection” thingie. He might be “allen stephens” as well - although if so, he probably only uses that identity when the cap’s been off the glue for a few hours, if you take my meaning…

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 5, 2006 9:06 AM
Comment #138168
John Back wrote: There are 535 members of Congress, and to hear folks defend their own, it seems that there are no irresponsible incumbents to vote out. HA,HA!

Yes, it’s funny. And disturbing.

I’ve researched about half of those in congress, and it ain’t a pretty picture. There are very few (if any) that are not FOR SALE, irresponsible, bought-and-paid-for, don’t troll for big-money-donors, don’t spend a great deal of time and tax payers’ money campaigning on the job, don’t vote on pork-barrel, graft, corporate welfare, that truly embrace common-sense, no-brainer reforms, and work to solve our many pressing problems, for fear of angering their big-money-donor-puppeteers.

That’s why I’d like to know who BillS’ congress persons are. It is all to easy show how irresponsible most (if not all) incumbent politicians are. Even when I got to looking closely at a few I thought were OK, I was enlightened and surprised to learn otherwise. Some are don’t right criminal. And, it gets very interesting trying to watch the voter make excuses and rationalize the way their favorite incumbent votes and the things they do and say.

The bar is set so, so, so very low.

So, irresponsible incumbent politicians get away with murder (literally in some cases).

Take Jack for instance. In the rose-colored column, he says he likes his congress persons.
But after looking at the incubments’ voting and behavior, there was back-peddling:

Jack wrote: When you hear someone tell you to throw the bums out, ask which bums? I like my guys. They are competent, honest and doing a good job. We have Senators John Warner & George Allen and Congressman Tom Davis.

Which proves how so very low the bar is set…

______ Pork and Waste by Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) ________
[] According to the IG report, NTIS has lost $5 million over the past five years selling documents and is now trying to branch out into functions already performed by the private sector. The agency has asked Congress for a $2 million appropriation to cover its losses. Congress, to its credit, seems unlikely to open the coffers for this bailout.
However, it is not apparent whether Congress will follow DOCs suggestion to close NTIS. Although the Library of Congress or Government Printing Office could probably do the work more efficiently, there are some members who still think that NTIS is necessary. Notable among them is Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), whose district is home to NTIS.
______ more pork and waste by Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) ________
[] $7,000,000 added by the House for an environmental study at the soon-to-be closed Lorton Correctional Complex in Virginia, which is the federal government’s facility for D.C. inmates. The jail is in or adjacent to the districts of House D.C. Appropriations Subcommittee Ranking Member Jim Moran (D-Va.), House Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Frank Wolf (R-Va.) and House Government Reform D.C. Subcommittee Chairman Tom Davis (R-Va.), all of whom pushed for the project.
[] According to Warren Suss, a federal telecom analyst, the memorandum “has Tom Davis’ fingerprints all over it.” A Government Reform Committee spokesman said Davis wasn’t involved with writing the document. Many companies that bid on the TCE contract protested the Treasury decision to award AT&T because they were not told about the memorandum, which could have altered the content of their bids. These protests were sustained by the GAO.

______ Senator John Warner (R-Va.) __________________________

[] John Warner Voted NO on favoring 1997 McCain-Feingold overhaul of campaign finance. (Oct 1997)
[] John Warner Voted NO on banning more types of Congressional gifts. (Jul 1995)
[] John Warner Voted NO on banning campaign donations from unions & corporations. (Apr 2001)
[] John Warner Voted YES on $40 billion per year for limited Medicare prescription drug benefit. (Jun 2003)
[] John Warner Voted NO on restricting business with entities linked to terrorism. (Jul 2005)
[] John Warner Voted YES on limit welfare for immigrants. (Jun 1997) (How about NONE??? John Warner is one of many in government that have forced states to accommodate illegal aliens, and provide them with education, welfare, Medicaid, healthcare, etc. Thanks a lot John Warner).
[] John Warner Voted YES on prioritizing national debt reduction BELOW tax cuts. (Apr 2000) (tax cuts for the rich that is???)
John Warner said: Currently, I am focused on national defense, the economy, healthcare, and homeland security issues, (among may others) that are of utmost importance to Virginia and the nation. (Really? Then why vote NO on restricting business with entities linked to terrorism???)
[] John Warner Voted YES on allowing more foreign workers into the US for farm work. (Jul 1998) (at minimum wage? or nore imported slave labor?)
[] John Warner Voted YES on Social Security Lockbox & limiting national debt. (Apr 1999) (Really? Look at what has happened since then?)

________ Senator George Allen (R-Va.) ______________________
[] George Allen Voted NO on banning “soft money” contributions and restricting issue ads. (Mar 2002)
[] George Allen Voted NO on banning campaign donations from unions & corporations. (Apr 2001)
[] George Allen Voted NO on $47B for military by repealing capital gains tax cut. (Feb 2006)
[] George Allen Voted NO on reducing marriage penalty instead of cutting top tax rates. (May 2001)
[] George Allen Voted NO on restricting business with entities linked to terrorism. (Jul 2005)
[] George Allen Voted YES on $40 billion per year for limited Medicare prescription drug benefit. (Jun 2003)
[] George Allen supports allowing churches to provide welfare services. (Sep 2000) (bad idea)
[] It’s interesting how this sleazy money trail of former Republican mega-lobbyist, Jack Abramoff - he of the Indian gambling scandal, the Tom DeLay scandal, the bank fraud scandal, and much much more — touches so many prominent Virginia Republicans. For instance, wouldn’t you just know that Virginia’s own junior Senator, good ol’ “Cowboy George” Allen, would be caught holding out his hand to the man whom Tom DeLay (also indicted) once called one of his “closest and dearest friends?”
[] Senator George Allen (R-VA), often mentioned for the Republican Presidential nomination, loaned $470,000 to a Union President with whom he was having an affair. Later, Senator Allen forgave the $470,000 loan, while toying with the idea of running for Governor of his home state. The same Union has recently endorsed Allen for Governor. Both Allen and the female union President deny any connection between the forgiveness of the loan and the endorsement.
_______________________________________
Jack says he supports most of that, or doesn’t care about the issue. Interesting. And that is only part of the whole story.

Still, in the end, it always boils down to the usual excuses: “Nobody is perfect”; “It’s better than votin’ for Democrats”; “There’s always a few bad apples”; etc.

So, do you think these are good guys (as Jack says)?

Then, look at the porker-award winners for only 2005:
____________________________
Robert Aderholt (R-Ala.), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Robert Bennett (R-Utah) , Christopher “Kit” Bond (R-Mo.), Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-N.Y.), Henry Bonilla (R-TX), Conrad Burns (R-Mont.), Thad Cochran (R-Miss., Senate) , Larry Craig (R-Idaho), Robert Cramer (R-Ala.), John Culberson (R-TX), Randy Cunningham (R-CA.), Rep. Jo Ann Davis (R-VA.), Mike DeWine (R-Ohio), John Doolittle (R-CA.), Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), Chet Edwards (D-TX) , Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.), Rep. Mark Green (R-Wis.), Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), Bill Frist’s (R-Tenn.), David Hobson (R-Ohio) , Mark Kirk (Rill.), Ray LaHood (R-Ill.) , Tom Latham (R-Iowa), Rep. Ileana Ros- Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.), John McCain (R-AZ) ($1 million for the brown tree snake), Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), George Nethercutt, Jr. (R-Wash.) , Anne Northup (R-Ky.), John Peterson (R-Pa.) , Ralph Regula (R-Ohio), Dennis Rehberg (R-Mont) (parking garage that voters petitioned to have the pork-barrel money returned), Harold Rogers (R-Ky.), Richard Shelby (R-Ala., Don Sherwood (R-Pa.) , Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), Ted Stevens (R-Alaska, Senate) (he is the worst), John Sweeney (R-N.Y.), David Vitter (R-La.), James Walsh (R-N.Y.) , Zack Wamp (R-Tenn.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Chairman Bill Young (R-FL)

Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.), Marion Berry (D-Ark.), Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.), Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), Robert “Bud” Cramer (D-Ala.), James Clyburn (D-S.C.), Norm Dicks (D-Wash.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), Sam Farr (D-Calif.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), Ernest “Fritz” Hollings (D-S.C.), Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.), Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) , Mary Landrieu (D-La.) , Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) , Alan Mollohan (D-W.Va.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.) , John Murtha (D-Pa.), David Obey (D-Wis.), Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), Peter Visclosky (D-Ind.)

And, why don’t they want any one overseeing their greed either? Here is a list of politicians that voted against the creation of the Office of Public Integrity:
Senator Akaka (D-HI)
Senator Bennett (R-UT)
Senator Chafee (R-RI)
Senator Coburn (R-OK)
Senator Coleman (R-MN)
Senator Dayton (D-MN)
Senator Domenici (R-NM)
Senator Pryor (D-AR)
Senator Stevens (R-AK)
Senator Voinovich (R-OH)
Senator Warner (R-VA)

What’s up with that?
Looks like Democrats got out-voted.

And, what is truly disgusting is that whenever crooked politicians finally get caught red-handed, after years and years of corruption, they get pardons, like the 140 felons (some even pled guilty, like Dan Rostenkowski) pardoned by clinton. Who says political crime doesn’t pay?

So, we should accept the “Nobody is perfect” excuse?
Should we accept the status quo?
Should we accept mediocrity?
I don’t think so.

Look at your Congress….
_______OUR 535 members of the U.$. CONGRESS________
7 that have been arrested for fraud;
19 have been accused of writing bad checks;
117 have directly or indirectly bankrupted at least 2 businesses;
3 have done time for assault;
71, repeat 71 cannot get a credit card due to bad credit;
14 have been arrested on drug-related charges;
8 have been arrested for shoplifting;
21 currently are defendants in lawsuits;
84 have been arrested for drunk driving in the last year;
________________________________________
That was originally published in CapitolHillBlue in 1999. If you were to update the list now, it would be even worse, with all the corruption we’ve seen lately. You could add all sorts of corruption to the list. There should be two (or more) instances of manslaughter on the list too. And, if voters continue to support the status quo, the list will be even worse 10 years from now.

Yes, voters need to pay closer attention.
Voters should do themselves a favor (soon), and start paying close attention now, because the average voter will be the one to suffer most when the consequences of decades of fiscal and moral bankruptcy finally catch up with us.

Start doing the simple, smart, responsible thing now, or suffer the consequences (again).
_____________________________________

Betty Burke,
Good observation. Maybe?

Posted by: d.a.n at April 5, 2006 11:09 AM
Comment #138188

betty burke there is a little john counts in every american who loves thier country,every american that see’s the good that america do’es for all of man kind.As you fight for those who do this country harm i speak out for those who do the hard work of protecting every human being.A free human being that will not fight for the freedom of other human beings is a lousy human being.there is no fight in folk’s like you.

Posted by: justwondering at April 5, 2006 1:12 PM
Comment #138230
justwondering wrote: A free human being that will not fight for the freedom of other human beings is a lousy human being. There is no fight in folk’s like you.

justwondering,
I’d wager Betty Burke has more fight than you ever will.

What you, justwondering, fail to understand is that every American that loves their country is also one that is ready and willing to hold their leaders accountable.

Nobody is arguing that America is capable of doing good things, but you have to be blind to see the bad things it does also.

You are simply wrong to equate those that raise valid concerns as someone doing their nation harm. Unless you can give specifics, that’s just lame rhetoric.

As for some of those that give the most for our nation, such as our fighting men and women, how dare congress be so irresponsible to vote on pork-barrel, waste, graft, bribes, and corporate welfare, when some troops don’t have body armor, and some are not getting adequate medical attention? How dare our leaders in congress do this:
[] Vote for pork-barrel versus vote for body armor for troops without body armor ?
[] Vote themselves (congress persons) raises versus vote for raises for troops in active duty and more funding for disabled veterans ?
[] Vote for $75,000 for Onondaga County for the Greater Syracuse Sports Hall of Fame versus more armor for humvees ?
[] Vote for $150,000 added in conference for the Coca-Cola Space Science Center in Columbus, Ga. versus secure the nation’s borders (which Al-Qaeda is infiltrating) ?
[] Vote for $250,000 added by the House for the North Creek Ski Bowl in the district of House appropriator John Sweeney (R-N.Y.) versus fix the levees in New Orleans ?
[] Vote for $250,000 added by the Senate for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Tenn. to support community programs versus fix our crumbling infrastructure (bridges, roads, railways, levees, etc.) ?
[] $775,000 for the Biltmore Hotel in the district of Rep. Ileana Ros- Lehtinen (R-Fla.) versus shore up Social Security and Medicare ?
[] $100,000 for the Tiger Woods Foundation versus improve public education ?
[] $300,000 for Baltimore for the relocation of the Center Garage versus prosecute investor/stock fraud ?
[] $5000 for gold embossed cards for Air Force One versus better medical care and rehabilitation for maimed veterans?

What to see more? Just visit cagw.org to see thousands of disgusting examples by almost every single incumbent in Congress stretching back for decades.

That is why none of the incumbents deserve to retain their cu$hy, coveted, highly prized seats.
That is the price the incumbents should pay for looking the other way.

Now, justwondering…I am just wondering something. Is, in your opinion, questioning that type of corruption, unpatriotic ? Are you saying things are rosy? If so, you should visit the rose-colored-column. As usual, things are always rosy according to the current “In-Party”.

_________________________________________
Please Stop Repeat Offenders.
Don’t Re-Elect Them !
_________________________________________

Posted by: d.a.n at April 5, 2006 5:05 PM
Comment #138328

Justwondering-
I would fight and die to protect this country. But I fight for more than just the land at my feet. I fight for the integrity of the nation, because that is what honors this country’s founding principles best.

You discount the patriotism of others because they don’t believe in your ideology, and you consider your ideology the only valid and patriotic kind. Thankfully, this is not a country where the opinions of the few are dictated upon the many without their leave. That robust variety of viewpoints is especially useful when the party in power loses its bearing on the proper use of its power. We can have a nice quiet revolution in the voting booth without the necessity of having a great big violent one in the streets.

The founding fathers were not perfect, and had many views we would now consider abhorrent, even in conservative circles. But they hit upon a necessary formula of checks and balances, rights and duties that made sure that this government had self-correcting capacities.

Many people like you, in all parties, think they have the best handle on things. But thinking that and it being so are two different things. I am glad for a system where the citizens can put their government to the test, even when some make the mistake of deifying their leaders and declaring their cause and the means of achieving it infallible.

Instead of falling into permanent error like the Communists and the fascists, we have the capacity to change. We need no charismatic leaders to keep us from error. We only need our own vigilance, and willingness to question the authorities when we believe them to be wrong.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 6, 2006 12:10 AM
Comment #138356

d.a.n. and Stephen: Thank you, for being True American Patriots and gentlemen both.

Now the Irish-American lass will speak to Mr. Counts-Wondering-Stephens.

If Thomas Jefferson were alive to see what his country has spawned in those of your ilk, he would weep with furious sorrow. “America” is not a piece of Land any more than it is a piece of Cloth: it is a Living Ideal - or it is Nothing. Until you are capable of recognising this, you will never be a true Patriot.

America was designed to encourage Dissent, and Progress, and Compassion, and Liberty. America was designed to resist Power, and Torture, and Fear, and Intimidation.

You are not a “Good American,” sir, when you act to thwart the goals of America’s founders. What you are is a Good Conservative. America was the most liberal Social Experiment of its day - and for many decades thereafter.

I do not find it coincidental that the degradation of the American Ideal coincides with the dropping of America The Nation in the Quality Of Life Indices, worldwide.

First, we became Smug. Then, we became Insular. Then, we became Xenophobic. Then, we became Jingoistic. Then, we became Uneducated. Then, we became Paranoiac. Now, we are slavering greedy ignorant war-profiteers, pigs at the trough lying abed with every manner of tyrannical despot - and for what? For wealth and power. Not for the American Ideal. Of course, since these are the only things which matter to Conservatives, you no doubt think things to be peachy-keen, yes?

WE’RE NUMBER ONE! WE’RE NUMBER ONE! WE’RE NUMBER ONE!

Well actually, buddy, we’re number thirteen:

http://www.economist.com/theworldin/international/displayStory.cfm?story_id=3372495&d=2005

Down from, as I recall, number eight, the last time I checked, about three years ago.

And falling.

And if you think you’re doing America any favours by ignoring it and pretending that everything is fine, then I’d hate to see what condition your home is in. Or your car. Hell, I’d wager you take better care of your Home and your Car than you do of America! With her, you just let things run on: a Leak here, a Squeak there - until one day there’s Smoke, then Fire, and the whole thing goes up in flames.

Well, I’m not ignoring it. I am the Good Housekeeper, trying to keep ahead of the Dirt, the Scum, the Sludge, and the Pests. And it is long past time for a good Clean Sweep.

So why don’t you just wrap yourself in that Flag you care so much about, sit yourself down with some nice Consumer Goods, and watch Fox or NASCAR as America - the real America - catches fire and burns around you, without you even noticing.

We’ll shoulder the load that Messrs. Paine and Jefferson layed down for us so many years ago.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 6, 2006 8:17 AM
Comment #138357

[sic]

(That’s what you get when it’s 3Am and you cannot think if you want to say “lay down” or “laid down.”)

[sic]

(That’s what you get when it’s 3Am and you cannot think if you want to say “lay down” or “laid down.”)

Sleepy Betty

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 6, 2006 8:22 AM
Comment #138358

Deja vu: tthhaatt ssttrraannggee ffeeeelliinngg wwee ssoommeettiimmeess ggeett……

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 6, 2006 8:25 AM
Comment #138379

My point is if you go out of your way to weeken the president of the united states as we are at war you weeken the united states as a country.do you like it when top terrorest quote our leaders word for word on al jazeera?dems. and reps.stupidity is rampant in both party’s its just a little more rampant in the dem. party.

Posted by: justwondering at April 6, 2006 11:01 AM
Comment #138413

D.A.N.You want specifics you say no w.m.d.s I say tell that to the survivers of his poison gas attacks.You say no connection TO TERROREST’S I say tell to the human bomb’s whose familys were paid 25000 dollors to explode in isreal.when i say he i am referring to sadam.17 u.n. resolution’s that he thumbed his nose at.daily attack’s on our air force in the no fly zone.Does this excape you’r memory?How about the attemted assasanation of a former president.This might not sound serious to you but you and your ilk made sadam the powerfull thug that he was.sadam was smart enough to know the liberal media and liberal democrats would run interferance for him.As we now know sadam was correct you guy’s were and still are his best chance of regaining power.GOOD JOB D.A.N.

Posted by: justwondering at April 6, 2006 12:45 PM
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