I think this is the best explanation for why most of us felt so betrayed by the Democrats vote. They did just enough to say they tried, but not enough to make a difference, which has happened over
again the last five years.
Maybe it's time to get the lawyers and businessmen and lobbyists out of Congress and replace them with people like Cindy Sheehan who have been on the receiving end of their decisions.
The Rude PunditIn Brett Easton Ellis's 1985 book Less Than Zero,...Clay walks into a bedroom where all the L.A. posers and rich boys have gathered around a nude, drugged-out 12-year old girl tied to a bed, and they're getting ready to run a train on her. Clay confronts Rip, in whose apartment the rape's about to occur. Haltingly, Clay says, "I don't think it's right."
Rip responds, "What's right? If you want something, you have the right to take it. If you want to do something, you have the right to do it."
Clay answers, "But you don't need anything. You have everything."
To which Rip says, "No, I don't."
Clay asks, "Oh, shit, Rip, what don't you have?"
"I don't have anything to lose," Rip says, before he heads into the bedroom to join in the rape. Clay walks out of the apartment. He doesn't call the cops, he doesn't rescue the girl, he doesn't even try to stop anyone. He just leaves. And in the pathetic realm in which the characters exist, it can be seen as some kind of mighty gesture of strength and character. If one wants to be blindly optimistic, it can be seen as a moment of change for Clay, a moment when he will become a different, better person. But, after Clay leaves, even if he's washed his hands of it, that little girl's stranded in a nightmare.
Today, Senators who voted for cloture are going to vote against the nomination of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. And when Lincoln Chafee, Maria Cantwell, Herbert Kohl, Blanche Lincoln, and Jay Rockefeller, as well as all the others run for re-election, they can say, "Look, I said 'No.'" But that "no" matters so little as the very issues they say caused them to vote that way - the power of the presidency, abortion rights, the right to privacy, the favoring of corporations - are turned against them time and again. Yeah, they voted against Alito, but there's a starving, beaten prisoner in Gitmo, a pregnant teenage girl in Nebraska, a coal mining family in West Virginia who are all gonna be the ones fucked because of such cowardly courage. And when they say they voted against Alito, someone's gonna be smart enough to say, "Hey, Maria, if it's such a big fuckin' deal, why didn't you join the filibuster?"
Update: The vote was 58 to 42. Enough to have sustained a filibuster even without Chafee if 16 Senators believed in more than empty gestures. And Olympia Snowe voted for Alito. There is no middle in the Republican Party. There is only Democratic capitulation masking as moderation.
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