The Cynic
A cynical spin on the news.
Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Still WJC...


Waving goodbye to politics? Hell no.  Posted by Hello

Current Music: A Tribe Called Quest
 
It was an exciting Monday night at the DNC in Boston. I actually left work early to enjoy it since I'll be working nights for the rest of the week. First and foremost BeBe Winans did to the Star Spangled Banner what Ray Charles did to America the Beautiful. Absolutely perfect.
 
The whole festivities started with Al Gore. Who's had a worst four years in politics than Gore? He loses an election under controversial circumstances and couldn't even carry his home state. He leaves politics, teaches at Columbia and grows a beard that made him look like Titans coach Jeff Fisher. He comes back to politics, shaves and endorses Howard Dean (which cost him his friendship with Joe Lieberman). Dean loses the Iowa caucus which kills his campaign and Gore's struggling credibility.
 
However, like most Democrats, the convention is a last chance to stand up and revive your fallen legacy. The former VP stepped up and tried to do it with comments like these:
And it is in that spirit, that I sincerely ask those watching at home tonight who supported President Bush four years ago: did you really get what you expected from the candidate you voted for? Is our country more united today? Or more divided? Has the promise of compassionate conservatism been fulfilled? Or do those words now ring hollow?
Now, it sounded a little like Reagan's old tried and true "Are you better off now than you were four years ago line," from the 1980 elections. But I'm willing to throw the guy a bone.
 
I'm not sure where I stand on Hillary. And that's a little concerning because I'd vote for Bill Clinton to be king of the world if he ran. But something about Hillary has never really sat well with me, her policies are great, she's the junior senator of my birthstate and she's a champion for those in need of affordable health care.
 
However, even on Monday she didn't seem real comfortable supporting John Kerry, especially when his victory in November could ruin her presidential plans. I think she sees what the rest of the die hards see and in the end she made the sacrifice to save America from Bush and put her personal gains on the backburner.
 
But in the end Monday night was "The Return of Willie". Four years ago Bill Clinton was shun and his party paid the dear price for it. On Monday a rebuilt and restructured Democratic party put their best home run hitter in the leadoff spot and like Babe Ruth, he delivered. His speech was part promotion:
 
Here is what I know about John Kerry. During the Vietnam War, many young men -- including the current president, the vice president and me-could have gone to Vietnam but didn't. John Kerry came from a privileged background and could have avoided it too. Instead he said, send me.
 
When they sent those swift-boats up the river in Vietnam, and told them their job was to draw hostile fire-to show the American flag and bait the enemy to come out and fight-John Kerry said, send me.
 
When it was time to heal the wounds of war and normalize relations with Vietnam-and to demand an accounting of the POWs and MIAs we lost there-John Kerry said, send me.
 
When we needed someone to push the cause of inner-city kids struggling to avoid a life of crime, or to bring the benefits of high technology to ordinary Americans, or to clean the environment in a way that creates jobs, or to give small businesses a better chance to make it, John Kerry said send me.
 
Tonight my friends, I ask you to join me for the next 100 days in telling John Kerry's story and promoting his plans. Let every person in this hall and all across America say to him what he has always said to America: Send Me.
 
This guy could sell winter coats along the equator if he wanted. Joe Klein was correct when he said "this man has no peers". Hell Dave Barry is right. I'd vote for him again if I could.
 
Clinton was not done though. No sirree, he's had waited four years to choose these words and he's waited for the moment to prove to his party that he is an asset, maybe their most important asset to regaining the White House. His message was part critical:
When I was in office, the Republicans were pretty mean to me. When I left and made money, I became part of the most important group in the world to them. At first I thought I should send them a thank you note -- until I realized they were sending you the bill.
 
Almost all 200,000 of us [in the top 1% of earnings] would have been glad to pay 5,000 dollars to make the nearly 300 million Americans safer-but the measure failed because the White House and the Republican leadership in the House decided my tax cut was more important -- If you agree with that choice, re-elect them. If not, give John Kerry and John Edwards a chance.
His 25 minutes of fame were so good, so brilliant it made me wonder in the party made a crucial mistake. Maybe they should've left Clinton on the back burner and promoted the new group. Maybe Debbie Stabenow should've been speaking, maybe Diane Finestien should've been speaking, maybe Evan Bayh should've been speaking.
 
However you can just say "screw it" when you hear a line like this:
Their opponents will tell you to be afraid of John Kerry and John Edwards, because they won't stand up to the terrorists -- don't you believe it. Strength and wisdom are not conflicting values -- they go hand in hand.
Nice to have you back Bill, we need you, more now than ever.
 
BTW...I didn't hit on it but Jimmy Carter was PISSED. Read that and smile.

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