Monday, February 1, 2010
Saturday, December 6, 2008
For all my joshing in 2007 and 2008, the fact is that John Edwards is an inspirational leader and a super-capable innovator.
Of course, I do not condone what he did. The deceit he pulled on his supporters and the pain he must have caused his family.
But we are in a crucial moment in our country's history. We need every pair of hands we can get.
There are politicians who have come before, and have committed far worse deeds. John didn't start an illegal war. He does not have blood on his hands.
In this time of everyone uniting for the common good, let's forgive and move on. I truly hope that John is made the new Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
As the post below reminds us (from transitionsingovernance.org), HUD was one of John's areas of specialty during his Presidential Campaign. And goodness knows, we need someone who can lead from the front to help get all of us out of the current housing mess.
Barack, pay heed. John, good luck!
"Former Democratic Senator and current 2008 Presidential Candidate John Edwards says his proposal to “radically overhaul” HUD, in part by eliminating at least 1,500 jobs, would improve the lives of millions of people in public housing.
On his website, John Edwards has called the Department of Housing and Urban Development a “Symbol of bureaucracy and mismanagement.”
Also, in a quest to reduce the number of employees as HUD “by at least 1,500″, Edward’s wants to institute state-run regional authorities.
Finally, Edwards also says HUD should reduce its use of contractors. The candidate says reliance on contractors contributes to “cronyism” at the agency.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
He, like me, believes that the work of resurrecting hope in this country only began with the Election of President Obama.
It will require each one of we citizen activists, through networks like Blogger, to continue to articulate what we want an Obama Presidency actually to do.
And almost more importantly, what sort of a 'feel' we want it to have, and to generate in our country, and around the world.
This is Paul's opening shot on the subject of taxes. I don't necessarily agree with all that he says.
But, he doesn't have a Blogger account with friends. I do. The most important defense of democracy is to be found in the constant dissemination of knowledge. I'm happy to help him disseminate his.]
Who paid for World War I?
“I did,” said John the baker. “I worked hard to feed soldiers and civilians. I didn’t make much money, but I did my part. I was a patriot and saved the world.”
Who paid for World War II?
“I did,” said GI Joe. “I fought to keep the United States of America free. While I was overseas, my wife, Jessica, ran her restaurant and paid her taxes. Kept our country out of debt. That war cost our country lots of money but everyone paid their taxes to keep our country’s economy strong.”
Who paid for the Korean war?
“I did,” said June the factory worker. “I built airplane wings for our fighter pilots. My pay was low but I was a patriot and paid my taxes to support my country.”
Who paid for the Viet Nam war?
“I did,” said GI Jane. “My husband, already disabled in the war, worked from his wheelchair. While I was in Nam he paid taxes to support our country and to make sure our country did not go into debt.”
Who paid for the Iraq war?
“Not me,” said Joe the plumber. “I needed a tax break while our soldiers fought.”
“Not me,” said Jill the stock broker. “I made lots of money here at home while the Armed Services did their work over there. I didn’t have to pay a cent, and now the bailout has covered my company’s losses.”
“And not me,” said Jim the banker. “I bought a second house and then a third. I like it when we fight these wars. I especially like the tax breaks.”
Then who is paying for this war?
“Not me,” said Jewell the political activist. “Our President said that we can be patriots, watching while the soldiers and the security contractors fight this war. Our national debt is huge and someone will have to pay it off.”
I’ve been thinking about the word “tax.” The word “tax” riles us. Yet, President James Madison believed that “taxes are what make a civilized society.” Similarly, the word “king” has a nice image but if we visualize the United States ruled by one, the word is suddenly not so attractive and romantic. Context always changes meaning.
Perhaps “tax” is actually good. We are not taxed to fund a king's dynasty; we are United States citizens and therefore, we the people are the government. By paying taxes, we provide crucial resources for ourselves. How can essential taxes be characterized so negatively?
“Tax cut” sounds so nice in some contexts. We must find a new word to replace “tax” so that we can feel good while we pay for our necessary services. Or we can create a context for Americans that links “tax” to “roads,” “schools,” “safety,” “democracy,” “freedom,” and “liberty.”
How did we get to this desperate economic place? We redistribute wealth by having tax breaks for the upper class—to the billionaire CEOs and corporations—to the hedge fund money managers and the oil magnates, and by increasing every day costs such as gasoline and food. Redistribution of wealth to the super wealthy is still redistribution of wealth.
The rich get richer, the poor get poorer and the middle-class gets squeezed out. Joe the plumber and Jessica the restaurant owner will do just fine if we stop redistributing the wealth to the wealthy through corporate tax breaks.
So who is paying for the gasoline our military trucks use? Who is paying for the security contractors of Blackwater. Who is paying for the Halliburton meals for our troops?
“I am paying,” smiled the president of China. “America has borrowed all its money from me. For China, it is good that American citizens do not pay their taxes for this war. We make money hand over fist from every dollar borrowed to pay for the Iraq war. Then we can buy land in America. We bought a good piece of IBM, too. We own America.”
“No, I am the financier,” smiled North Korea. “America has borrowed its money from me. For North Korea, it is good that American citizens do not pay their taxes. We own America.”
“And I am,” smiled a European tourist on a shopping spree, buying up a piece of Manhattan. “In the last 18 months we tourists bought one-third of all new Manhattan condos that were for sale, while native New Yorkers remained worried about bonuses and the economic climate,” (paraphrase from Christine Haughney of the New York Times of December 21, 2007).
“And I am,” smiled the United Arab Emirates. “Abu Dhabi Media is flush with oil cash. We reached a $1 billion deal to make movies and video games with Warner Brothers, the big Hollywood studio owned by Time Warner,” (paraphrased from Tim Arango of the September 3, 2008 New York Times). “For the United Arab Emirates, it is very good that American citizens do not pay their taxes for this war. We, too, own America.”
“And I am,” smiled Saudi Arabia. “China pays us for oil from money they make investing in the Iraq war. We, too, own America.”
Wow! So you all get rich because of our tax breaks. Is that right?
“Oh, but we like your corporate tax breaks,” say China, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (but not Europe, who is now suffering their own recession). “Your corporate tax breaks make us money.”
OK, so you’re saying corporate tax breaks come from thinking that if the rich get richer, money trickles down all the way to the poor, and we all share the wealth.
“Yup, but the only people who are sharing the wealth are us,” say China, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the billionaire American CEOs and hedge fund managers. “And we like it...”
Friday, August 8, 2008
Mind you, with the exception of the National Enquirer, you have to admire the fact that Our Johnny managed to keep the affair a secret for so long. Does this make him the perfect candidate to be Barack's Veep?
After all, the Veep has to hang out at an undiscloseable location. If the media couldn't find the affair, they sure as heck will never find the location.
And is this why Happy-Happy John-John never took me up on my offer of a no-holds-barred radio interview...?!
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Democrat John Edwards has endorsed former rival Barack Obama, fresh signs of the party establishment embracing the likely nominee even as Hillary Rodham Clinton refuses to give up her long-shot candidacy.
Edwards appeared with Obama in Grand Rapids, Mich., as Obama campaigned in a critical general election battleground state.
The endorsement came the day after Clinton defeated Obama by more than 2-to-1 in West Virginia. The loss highlighted Obama's work to win over the "Hillary Democrats" - white, working-class voters who also supported Edwards in large numbers before he exited the race.
Edwards, a former North Carolina senator and the 2004 vice presidential nominee, dropped out of the race in late January.
Both Obama and Clinton immediately asked Edwards for his endorsement, but he stayed mum for more than four months. A person close to Edwards, speaking on condition of anonymity, said he wanted to get involved now to begin unifying the party. Obama also signed on to Edwards' poverty initiative, which was a major cause for Edwards in his campaign and since he left.
When he made his decision, Edwards didn't even tell many of his former top advisers because he wanted to make sure that he personally talked to Clinton to give her the news, said the person close to him. Edwards' wife, Elizabeth, who has spoken favorably about Clinton's health care plan, did not travel with him to Michigan and is not part of the endorsement.
"We are here tonight because the Democratic voters have made their choice, and so have I," Edwards said to thunderous applause in Grand Rapids. He said Obama "stands with me" in a fight to cut poverty in half within 10 years, a claim Obama confirmed moments later.
Edwards told the rally that "we must come together as Democrats" to defeatin November.
He also praised Clinton.
"We are a stronger party" because of her involvement and "we're going to have a stronger nominee in the fall because of her work," he said.
Then as Edwards sat on stage and watched, Obama gave one of his most animated addresses in days, much of it devoted to fighting poverty. In America, he said, "you should never be homeless, you should never be hungry."
Clinton campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe said in a statement: "We respect John Edwards, but as the voters of showed last night, this thing is far from over."
Political strategist and Clinton allysaid Edwards' endorsement was a psychological boost for Obama, but unlikely to sway many voters.
"I think it certainly helps in terms of the psychology of the superdelegates," Carville told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Thursday, referring to the elected officials and party leaders who will ultimately determine the Democratic nominee.
``This is one of those endorsements that really matters,'' said Stephanie Cutter, an unaligned Democratic strategist who worked on's 2004 presidential campaign. ``Not only does his message represent those blue-collar workers that will be critical'' in the general election, she said, ``but its another sign that the primary race is coming to an end.''
[© 2008 The Associated Press]
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
On the road Edwards always traveled in his bus, the Mainstreet Express, usually with his two young children and wife Elizabeth, and sometimes their 25-year-old daughter Cate. The press was for the most part relegated to a trailing van or bus.
Edwards leaves the race having made a big impact on the two remaining candidates. His populist rhetoric forced his rivals to compete for union support, and he was the first out of the gate with detailed plans for universal healthcare and education, putting pressure on the field to match him.
"With our convictions and a little backbone we will take back the White House in November," said Edwards, ending his second campaign in a hurricane-ravaged section of New Orleans where he began it more than a year ago.
Praise from Clinton, Obama
DENVER - Democrat John Edwards is exiting the presidential race Wednesday [January 30, 2008], ending a scrappy underdog bid in which he steered his rivals toward progressive ideals while grappling with family hardship that roused voters' sympathies but never diverted his campaign, according to The Associated Press and NBC News.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007
May 1 is a good time to spare a thought for those around the world who also live in poverty, and whose dream of improving their circumstances is to join the melting pot that is this American nation.
What better way to celebrate their ambition than to remind ourselves of the inscription to be found at the base of the Statue of Liberty:
The New ColossusNo mention here of green cards or financial qualifications. No hint of border fences or security patrols.
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
with conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
a mighty woman with a torch
whose flame is imprisoned lightning,
and her name Mother of Exiles.
From her beacon-hand glows
her mild eyes command the air-bridged harbor
that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands your storied pomp!"
cries she with silent lips.
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
Only a simple invitation to come - penniless, but hopeful - to our shores, where all will be welcome.
No need even to say 'thank you,' because you were welcome even before you left your homeland.
Today is a good day to remind our leaders that we are still a generous nation, even though they may have become scared and selfish and small-minded.
Today is a good day to think about what we can do to reclaim our government. To renew our invitation to those of our friends around the world who still live poor and huddled, and who want so badly to join our Dream.
Monday, April 23, 2007
FOCUS on Poverty continues to be our most adopted idea, and with good reason as poverty is perhaps a bigger problem than many Americans realize. Via Care2 News Network this week comes a news of 2004 census analysis which reveals that 60 million Americans live on less than $7 a day.
While global income inequality is probably greater than it has ever been in human history, with half the world's population living on less than $3 per day, and the richest 1% receiving as much as the bottom 57%, the fact that so many Americans are living on so little, is particularly confounding.
The so-called “wealthiest, most abundant nation on Earth” now has the widest gap between rich and poor of any industrialized nation. In light of the fact that one dollar spent in the Caribbean, Latin America and Asia buys what $3 or $4 does in the U.S means the quality of life for tens of millions of Americans is now on a par with huge populations living in the developing world.
Ezra Klein points to a Robert Samuelson editorial that he says ignores the possible causes of economic disparity. But there are some Americans who can't ignore it, and according to this article by Raiane Eisler, most of them are women and children.
Consider that in the United States women over the age of 65 are twice as poor as men in the same age group. And there's a reason poverty so disproportionately hits women. Most of these poor women were, or still are, caregivers. And we've got an economic system that gives no visibility or value to this essential work when it's done in the home.
In fact, according to economists, the people who do the caring work in households, whether female or male, are "economically inactive." Of course, anyone who has a mother knows that most caregivers work from dawn to dusk. And we also know that without their work of caring for children, for the sick, and for the elderly, there would be no workforce, no economy, nothing.
Working Dad points out that children's health is at a 30-year low, and the Annual Child and Youth Well-Being Index (PDF) indicates that poverty is one of the main reasons. One of our finalist ideas, 3 Steps to Universal Health Care, recommends guaranteed health care for children and young adults.
So, what are you doing about poverty? The One Campaign wants to know, and wants you to tell the rest of the world.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
No sentient human being can watch the images of despair on the TV news, and not feel the pain of everyone at Virginia Tech, and in the small supporting township of Blacksburg, Virginia.
But we must also wonder, in confusion, what has become of our country. What on earth made this happen? What did we do that was so wrong that it could bring this to pass?
I can remember the Sixties like they were yesterday.
At home, America seemed to be a land of plenty. And Americans sought to carry that good feeling to new frontiers around the globe.
My father was a part of that crusade. Which is how I ended up being born and bred in England, even though my family had made the initial journey to America with the rest of the pilgrims, on the Mayflower.
My dad helped to introduce the American Express card to all points north and south, on the other side of the Atlantic - in Europe, the Middle East and in Africa.
It's difficult to conceive of a time when such capitalist artifacts were not commonplace around the world. But it was an era of adventure, heralded by John Kennedy's rousing words from the steps of the Capitol in Washington.
And then it all went wrong.
Assassinations. Vietnam. Watergate. A loss of innocence. A loss of pride. The adventure just crumbling away. I spent my teenage years in Europe avoiding the graffiti on the walls calling for all Yanks to go home.
When you believe that your excessive bonhomie and good fortune are impenetrable, and that you are welcome wherever you go, it's a mind-shock to discover that you're vulnerable after all, and that your neighbors were just waiting for you to fall over.
America withdrew into itself. It dropped all pretence of genuine altruism, and turned instead to self-gratification.
Ambition and greed were the driving forces at home, and where before America had prided itself on its spirit of outgoing generosity and charity when dealing with the rest of the world, now it was determined only to ensure that none got in its way.
The 'me' generations took over. Two stock booms. Corporate malfeasance. And a growing disparity between the rich and the poor.
An economic policy fuelled by greed; a social policy based on hatred; and a foreign policy driven by revenge.
These are the character traits by which America is recognised around the world in the 21st century.
But don't blame just our leaders. We have all cheered and encouraged the development of the society in which we live today.
It is not Congress or our Presidents who made us cynical and selfish. We did that to ourselves.
It is we who encourage the paparazzi, when we rush to buy the latest photo's of celebrity disgrace.
It is we who spend hours each evening delighting in the discomfort and embarrassment of ordinary people on TV reality shows.
And it is we who have determined that each of us, in our daily lives, will no longer think of what we can do for others, but rather that we should react to every given situation with prototypical Alpha American Attitude.
A wise politician in England once said, you can't legislate feelings.
There is way too much anger and intolerance in America today. But the answer is not to turn our cities and our universities into over-protected fortresses. Or to start another fruitless debate about the right to bear arms.
The answer lies in each of us.
Starting today, we can all make choices about how we act and react. What we watch and read. Whether or not we take the time to help the person we see has fallen by the wayside.
It is not government that will make us a less angry and a more tolerant country. It is each of us making better choices.
The political season is upon us. We will hear much from people telling us that we can be better; that we deserve better.
I say that we are better people - right now. And all we need to prove it is to start being better people in our dealings with our neighbors and our friends.
We deserve to get only that which we are prepared to give.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
They have just put up the following guest post from me. All of this activity about FOCUS On Poverty on SSB is giving me an idea of what I might be able to do to help make FOCUS a reality. Given that the potential avenue, originally presented by John Edwards' Presidential Campaign, seems now to have closed as a realistic possibility. But more of that later...
Too many of our working friends and neighbors live below the poverty line. This should be unacceptable in the richest country on earth in the 21st Century. This is not a matter of politics; it’s a question of common human decency.
The purpose of FOCUS On Poverty is to guarantee that every man, woman and child in the United States has access to proper food, clothing, housing and healthcare. It’s not a matter of political semantics; it’s a question of basic human need.
FOCUS On Poverty originated in October 2005, when my co-hosts and I ran a four-part series on poverty, on the community radio station in Chapel Hill, North Carolina – my hometown, as well as that of John Edwards, Democratic Presidential Candidate. The major points of FOCUS now also form the centerpiece of John’s platform on poverty.
On the same day that John announced his Candidacy, I created http://www.watch9.blogspot.com/, the purpose of which is to help John stay on message with his promise to help America’s working poor families.
I have now issued an open invitation to John to appear on my radio program, to allow him to flesh out the specifics of his proposals. Air America Radio have already publicly committed their support to my campaign.
Big concepts and bold promises are all very well. But each one of us can do something right now to help our neighbors in need.
If ever there was time for direct citizen action, it is now. That is the very essence of what Since Sliced Bread is about. And SEIU are being joined in that approach by all of the progressive Presidential Campaigns – from John’s OneCorps, to Hillary’s ‘conversations,’ and Barack’s call to us all to take responsibility now.
I am delighted at the opportunity that SEIU and SSB have given to me to raise the profile of America’s working poor. I am proud of how much they have allowed me to achieve in this past year.
But you know, I was never so moved as when I was able to use the gifts that had been given to me to help my ex-girlfriend in her disability fight against her overbearing chain grocery store. Never so happy as when I was able to encourage a fellow worker to pop across our village green, and ask John’s National HQ for help with her bed-ridden mother.
We all know a family that is in need. They don’t so much want a hand-out, as the warmth of your helping hand. Don’t wait for them to ask. Spare them that final loss of dignity. Offer a kind word, a bit of advice, or a cooked meal.
And remember: all of us, working together, can help to "Take Care of America's Family Values" - one family at a time!
Monday, April 9, 2007
This is excellent news for the 50 million Americans living below the poverty line. And I'm deeply grateful to SEIU and SSB for helping to remind our friends and neighbors that they are not alone. That we stand by them.
You too can show your support for America's working poor, by going to SSB and 'adopting' FOCUS On Poverty as an idea you wish to see become a reality.
This may be particularly crucial now that the Presidential Campaign of John Edwards has faltered.
The primary reason that I supported John's Campaign - and still hope that a miracle might occur - is that he was the only Candidate prepared to put forward proposals that would help to lead to the elimination of poverty in the United States.
There are plenty of national organizations that assist in giving profile to the plight of the poor. But what I wanted was action. And John's Campaign held out the real possibility of that action becoming a reality.
However, if we are to be brutally honest - and John has stated he wishes to be - then we have to admit that it is now highly unlikely that John will be the Democratic Nominee in 2008.
And so I will turn my mind to other other avenues, which on the one hand will parallel and compliment John's efforts, but on the other may hold out a greater chance of our jointly-conceived proposals on poverty becoming a reality.
Now, I'm getting there! And I will be updating you with my thinking and planning - as they progress.
But, in the meantime, you can at least show that your heart is in the right place by 'adopting' FOCUS On Poverty at SSB:
Themes from two of our most adopted ideas -- FOCUS on Poverty and Consumer Credit and Debt -- are cropping up in the news and in the blogosphere. Jim Wallis, of Sojourners, has long been a leading voice in the evangelical community on poverty issues, and on his blog this week he called for a "moral budget" that will "prioritize the poor," and quoted from a letter he sent to every U.S. Senator:In a letter that went to every senator, I requested that each “make sure to prioritize poor and working families, children, and the elderly as you determine where our nation commits its energies and resources.” I continued, “what is needed now is bold leadership and an agenda that sets clear priorities and seeks to empower families. We need to protect critical programs and increase aid, but also recommit ourselves to the notion of the common good.”
The media in the UK have been a tad less inspiring and thoughtful. They’re all bent out of shape because they say the 'sailors' acted with less than the appropriate British 'stiff upper lip.' Oh, get real!
Here’s the deal – by the numbers.
The leader of the sailor group has now admitted they were on an intelligence mission. He has also stated that his rules of engagement were to co-operate if captured – giving the Iranians no excuse to retaliate and exacerbate the situation.
If you watch the sailors making their videos, you see them reading from a cue card. If you read the letters they purportedly wrote, and you have any knowledge of English as the Brits write and speak it, you will know that they contain phrases we would never normally use.
Kind of like those awful instruction manuals in English the Japanese concocted, when they first started selling consumer products to the West.
And was I the only person who thought the sailors all looked preternaturally composed for a bunch of Brits who were alleged to be scared out of their wits? Was that just natural British 'reserve' - or the result of special forces' training?
Let's be clear about the end result of all this "appalling" behavior by those 'sailors': our boys – and girl – were released without us having to issue any kind of apology, and without one shot being fired.
Sort of stands in contrast to everything else going on in Afghanistan and Iraq, doesn't it?
You know, just occasionally, a thousand years of geopolitical experience counts for more than a big gun and a John Wayne attitude.
So, to all the doubters, I say this - on this occasion, I think we Brits are justified in claiming, "Mission Accomplished!"
But I still maintain that giving Hillary a week to prance around stating that she had broken all fund-raising records was a bad political tactic.
Rule No. 1: never, ever, ever give your primary opponent the political stage, front and center – all on their lonesome. Hello!
And therein lie a few pointers for the way things may proceed in the Democratic camp during the run-up to the explosive – and for some, potentially implosive – two months of January/February 2008.
Barack is now the clear favorite among Democrats, having raked in a whopping $25 million in the first financial quarter of 2007.
However, the decision to delay his own announcement betrays a political naïveté that may cost him against Hillary’s powerful and experienced campaign machine.
And I hate to say it. Really I do. But the money announcement for March 31 effectively marks the end of any realistic chance John had of winning the nomination.
Oh, he will continue. And I strongly urge him to do so. I want him to go on giving high profile to the plight of America’s poor.
But he had to break the media perception of this being a two-horse race between Hillary and Barack. And in that crucial ambition, John failed.
He has one last, slender chance with the next money announcement on June 30. If he can, at least, insert himself between Barack and Hillary with his fund-raising total for the second quarter of 2007, he might just revive his chances in the minds of Democratic voters.
Otherwise, he will have solidified his position as the eventual third place in everyone’s perception.
And there will be few people out there sadder about that reality than me.
Sunday, April 8, 2007
Terrance Heath, the blogmaster in charge of SSB, recently issued the following e-mail to the thousands of individuals who signed up with SSB, in response to the call by SEIU to help America's working families with a healthy dose of citizen action.
You should see what some people are doing with their ideas!
For example, Geoffrey G. in North Carolina has an idea about how to help the millions of Americans who live below the poverty line.
But he's not just waiting for it to happen: Geoffrey has contacted the John Edwards campaign about the idea and started a blog to support his efforts.
Top 5 Most Adopted Ideas:1. FOCUS On Poverty2. Workweek Down 1/10, Commuting 1/5 !3. Consumer Credit And Debt 4. Peace Study in Public Schools 5. Farm Produce Distribution Network
You can adopt this idea, read excerpts from his blog and help Geoffrey take action here: http://www.sinceslicedbread.com/idea/13449
If you haven't adopted an idea yet, what are you waiting for?
Click here to find one you might like: http://www.sinceslicedbread.com/allideas
Since Sliced Bread
Enlist your friends for help! Click below. Tell-a-friend!
If you received this message from a friend, you can sign up for Since Sliced Bread.
Ok. Let’s take the recent episode with the UK ‘sailors’ by stages.
So, fifteen of our boys (and one girl) were caught at sea. The line put out by the British Government was that they were technically in Iraqi waters, looking for smugglers.
How many search and board missions do you know about that are conducted in rubber dinghies?
What did the media think these dinghies were going to do when they came across a trawler smuggling hash, or whatever? Bump them into harbor?
Rubber dinghies serve only one military purpose. They are used by elite reconnaissance troops (in this instance, most probably a combined unit of Royal Marines and Special Boat Squadron), to evade radar detection, and mount clandestine beach landings.
I’m guessing the fifteen ‘sailors’ were either on their way to or coming back from an exercise to reconnoiter potential bombing targets in Iran.
Of course they were in Iranian waters. And that’s where the Brits started having fun with the Iranians.
The ‘sailors’ saw the Iranians coming. So, they dumped everything suspicious overboard. Then, from the moment they were captured, as they are taught in some of the toughest training in the world, they played dumb.
Did nothing to create waves. No John Wayne moments. Did what they were told. Said what they had to say. With lots of ‘please’ and ‘thank you.’ In the certain knowledge that they had what was needed to tough it out. And all the while fully aware of the action their Government would be taking.
Which was the same: nothing - nada.
The British Government stuck to the line that the ‘sailors’ were in Iraqi waters. And beyond that, they just laughed at the Iranians.
Tony Blair knew what his ‘sailors’ were doing. He also knew that they knew they were deniable. And that they could take care of themselves.
All of which left the Iranians with nowhere to go. So, they caved in.
First the losers – and mine may bear little resemblance to those touted by the mainstream media.
Hillary: she was expected to raise closer to $40 million overall, not $26 million.
John: his own Campaign was spreading the word it would be $20 million, not $15 million.
Barack: we don’t yet know his total. But no political strategy, of which I’m aware, says that you gain points by allowing your major rival to wander around for a couple of weeks telling the world that she won – at anything…
McCain: all former Dean supporters, have a warm and fuzzy moment, why not? Watch somebody else’s front-running campaign enter free-fall. Third among Republicans, with only $12.5 million.
Rudy: mind you, he raised the same amount as John. So, why the different measure? Do you know, I don’t know. It’s a matter of perception. But, that’s what this first primary is all about. So, trust me.
Bill Richardson: this guy was one of the last to enter the race. I think he took a couple of minutes to announce in between the State of New Mexico address and a visit to some nuclear waste facility. He has beans for a national network. And he rakes in a cool $6 million. Keep a beady eye on Bill.
He has credentials up the wazoo. Former Congressman, current Governor, former Secretary of Energy and UN Ambassador. He is as much at home welcoming a visiting Chinese dignitary, as he is lassoing a steer at the State Fair. And he has oodles of charisma for the Campaign Trail. He may well end up being the true heir to The Bill…
And last, and absolutely the least – “Mittens The Face-Lift.”
Just goes to show you what the power of the Mormon network and a few judicious telephone calls to old venture-capitalist pals can do.
$23 million. Who would have thunk it? Very definitely the overall fund-raising winner. God help us all.
There are those who accuse John of being plastic. At least plastic has some strength and firmness to it. “Mittens” is more like plasticine. Totally mouldable. Let’s people change his shape whenever it suits him.
How can you trust someone to get their political bearings straight, when they can’t even get their geographical bearings straight? Remind me again, is he from Utah, Michigan or Massachusetts?
About the only thing going for “Mittens,” from my point of view, is that he is so malleable, that if he gets elected, there might just be a chance that he can be persuaded to implement FOCUS On Poverty.