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Fall of the "Incumbent Era"

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posted on May, 18 2010 @ 08:50 PM
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For years the rule was simple. Get in, do some good work, and you're basically in for life. This is in regards to pretty much any non-limited position in politics. But as recent posts show, this rule is collapsing:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

When I studied Political Science back in high school, it was one of the questions we were asked.... Why is it that Americans hate their government so much since the Nixon era, yet constantly re elect their incumbents. We concluded that it was because the average American was too fed up with it and more interested in reality TV and non-issues in tabloids, etc etc, and that the average American is unconcerned because of their tight nit little lives revolving around a few basic things.

Now in college, we have learned the social-design behind this in architectural studies and urban design. basically blame the sub urb.

Indeed the fall of the era where you could be an incumbent and be guaranteed your place in office has several significant relations to it. During a discussion with a fellow student about the government, we literally were betting until the next revolution. But that was the extreme. The point is that this change in US politics is a sign of the times. It is a sign that suburbia has failed, that the old bah humbug liberal vs conservative era has collapsed, and that Americans themselves are changing.

I made it my goal to study social matters over the past 2 years. I've come to the conclusion that there are two sides to this story. Both of which have severe repressions. I went to high school in the ghetto-middle class border region, and now go to college in a ghetto neighborhood with a high class university. So I'm in the position to see the divisional lines forming and what's going on.

What is going on?

CHANGE.

MITOSIS.

CHAOS.

These are what come to mind. I point to this presidency and the last one really as the cause of it all. because these two presidencies essentially blurred the line between what it meant to be republican and democrat and its relationship to conservative and liberal, pro gov versus limited gov.

What I see is simple. There is a mix up of the cars occurring. These are the times of new political parties, times where the desperate pack their rifles, and the calm change their politics. the times where much alteration in the very social nature of the states occurs.

What I can say from observation is this. Those in the lower classes are hateful. And indeed, I can say that everyone who supported obama in my high school are now anti obama libertarians. I can say that those who supported Bush to the bitter end have begun to luck back and feel sick, and look forward and feel sicker. I can say that the upper classes have no politics at all, but they tend to lean republican or limited government democrat where I am from. And many of them are what we would socially call conservative, or center, leaning right. I've noticed a huge bolster towards religious communities, but also a bolstering of atheism. An "extremication" if you will. Socially it is the same. I don't exactly know what to call a middle class anymore.

What this means is a very interesting future for America. I can dare say I can create 2 vectors for where America might go for which there is a gray area of course, but these are the three different poles.


1.) CRAP!

One is worse caste situation. It is that in November, there will be a total change in congress, and that the extreme shift towards tea party republicans will fracture the nation into many bits. First of all, the Republican party will die. It will become the Tea Party, consisting of blue dog democrats and socially conservative "republic"ans. I highlight republic because they will support a strict return to a republic form. This extreme shift will cause fear in the top heads. Those incumbents that manage to survive. will confiscate their power and join with the president.
a.) some split occurs between the congress and the Presidency and your either get a martial law situation with revolution, or...
b.) The president gets ousted and we return to a republic, semi-violently.

2.) CRAP but eh...

In Two, the republicans get re elected, but not the traditional republic supporters. The Bush crowd gets back in and we get more of the same. and the 90s happens all over again.



What this does mean in the long term is simple. Socially, look up new urbanism. This is the future if things continue as they do. An interesting look into the future. What is also certain is that there is an extremely large pressure growing to return to a republic. And this is good. The likelihood is that we are looking at the beginning of a new party. A new era, if you will, in America. But like all nations at a changing point, we must remember that we are righting our own history. We must steadfast in peace and modesty as we begin to transform the nation back to a republic. The fact is that we are looking at a situation that happened once before under Tiberius Gracchus.

Tiberius Gracchus is an excellent way to look at this. basically, the same was occurring under Rome as is us now. And what occurred was that an influential leader rose to power and in turn ran with it. he fought for a return to a republic, but in turn became an almost emperor and fell.

let us therefore remember in November this. We WILL be returning to the ways of a republic if all continues. Just make sure you don't go and spoil your new republic with an all powerful defender of it. For he will inevitably create an oligarchy within it, and in turn a dictatorship.

Whoever rises to power and prominence in November, let us observe and keep clam. All men are sinners. Let us look carefully for what the media chooses for us, and instead, chose for ourselves. regardless.


Just a narrative on current events. You can learn about Tiberius Gracchus in this video series and see the parallels.











Remember, all that has happened, has happened before, and will happen again. Look to the past to guide us into the future.

[edit on 18-5-2010 by Gorman91]




posted on May, 19 2010 @ 01:44 AM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 


Bump.

I really want to stir some discussion on this matter.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 01:54 AM
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the Tea Party may bring change to government but that remains to be seen, unless fundamental true change takes place, in terms of bank, lobbyists and corporations nothing will change as the newly elected with just fall prey to the k street lobbyist just like always. Term limits are definitely needed and serious banking reform with strict usury laws enacted.

Problem with America is we were supposed to be a republic, but we ceased to be a republic in the mid 1800s and became an empire, the problem with being an empire is that most average Americans dont really want to be an empire despite what the politicians and corporations think, and I believe that goes for the left and the right,so its not a party specific feeling. In short its time to come home take car of our won problems and forget this empire and nation building stuff, anything less than that is no real change.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 03:24 AM
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reply to post by DarkStormCrow
 


Well I feel as though this is the first "internet" election, in a real sense. Obama tried, but I would not say it was 100%. This is literally the first really really internet election with a lot of heat. the media simply cannot control the outcome of this. Amazing how much changes in just a year and a half.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 03:30 AM
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The rules of politics have never been simple, and to oversimplify the politics of government is folly. What is interesting about the O.P.'s assessment is a willingness to reveal what was taught in high school and now in college, and the acceptance that what has been taught is knowledge. The emphasis on political parties, new or otherwise, speaks volumes to what was taught, and therefore learned, but seems to lack the necessary knowledge to make any real informed decisions about these political parties.

Before addressing the American peoples addiction to political parties, it is worth, for a brief moment addressing the proclivity the O.P. has shown, and that is quite prevalent here in ATS, and that is to use "reality television" as a metaphor for American apathy. It should be noted that the term "reality television" does not include news and information programs, and while "reality television" is too often hailed as the primary source of addictive entertainment in America, the fact that there are several 24 hour news stations, yet not a single broadcast station dedicated to "reality television", should make it obvious to the casual observer that "reality television is not nearly as important to television viewers as many in this site would assert or imply.

In an article for the The Atlantic, Michael Hirschorn endeavors to make the case for "reality television" and in doing so, makes some compelling arguments, and makes some interesting observations that seem to speak truism:


Is there an easier position to take in polite society than to patronize reality TV? Even television programmers see the genre as a kind of visual Hamburger Helper: cheap filler that saves them money they can use elsewhere for more-worthy programming. Reality shows cost anywhere from a quarter to half as much to produce as scripted shows. The money saved on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, the logic goes, allows ABC to pay for additional gruesome medical emergencies and exploding ferries on Grey’s Anatomy,. NBC’s crappy Fear Factor pays for the classy Heroes.


I am not so sure how polite society really is but that "reality television" has become the easy target of pot shots and source of blame should not be in doubt if one has bothered to read this thread. Further, that "reality television" is cheap enough to produce, and profitable enough to air, only allows broadcasters a budget to finance the more "serious" programs that pay top dollar for celebrities and directors and writers. Beyond this, there is a strong case to suggest that "reality television" has had a political impact world wide, and in some countries has introduced an experience with actual democratic voting. Particularly in the Arab world where a democratic voting principle is not so prevalent.

"Reality television", however, is not the issue and is merely a convenient scapegoat to rail against the perceived apathy of the people. It is a common trait amongst the youth of any nation to look at the older generations and dismiss them as part of the problem, and lacking the intelligence to understand that. Of course, anyone even remotely aware of American history should be aware that whatever problems one generation has caused, the next generation has followed suit, and in many ways upped the ante, and a long steady forward march towards tyranny has been happening in the U.S. for at least as long as the Lincoln Presidency and perhaps even longer.

Political science also should be examined carefully, as today's public and private high schools both teach it as a matter of course, and of course, in universities it is offered as an actual major, but what is the importance of this? If in high school, political science is taught with no real sense of history, and by reading the O.P.'s post it appears as if this is the case, then what good is political science? Allow me to quote the O.P. to illustrate my point.




When I studied Political Science back in high school, it was one of the questions we were asked.... Why is it that Americans hate their government so much since the Nixon era, yet constantly re elect their incumbents. We concluded that it was because the average American was too fed up with it and more interested in reality TV and non-issues in tabloids, etc etc, and that the average American is unconcerned because of their tight nit little lives revolving around a few basic things.


The question asked of the O.P. in that political science class seems to presume that prior to Nixon, Americans did not hate their government as much as they did post Nixon. Such a presumption ignore that just a few years before his Presidency another President was assassinated. The Presidency of FDR, while today often hailed as a great Presidency where he was beloved by all, in factual accounts was rife with controversy and there were many Americans appalled at the Roosevelt administrations clear and undeniable power grabs. The political divides then, were no different than they are today, and indeed, the convenience of war as providing a divided nation a common enemy was as a vital a tool back when FDR was President as it is today and when Bush II was President.

In between World War II and today, there was the seemingly bucolic 1950's that is marked by the actions of HUAC, the Korean Conflict, and was the era where television first brought Congressional Hearings into the living rooms of the American people. It was the era of the Kinsey Reports, it was the era in which President Truman fired General MacArthur, and gave us a President in Eisenhower who offered dire warnings in his Farewell Address about the rise of military-industrial complex. In many ways, the 1950's served as a sort of crucible for the turbulent times to come, but long before the 1950's, and staying with farewell addresses for a moment, the divisions brought about by political parties was spoke to as early as this nations first President under our Constitutional republic.

George Washington had much to say about the evils of political parties, but it is worth posting briefly a paragraph from that address to demonstrate how adamant he was that the American people should reject political parties as a necessary form of politics:


So likewise, a passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without adequate inducement or justification. It leads also to concessions to the favorite nation of privileges denied to others which is apt doubly to injure the nation making the concessions; by unnecessarily parting with what ought to have been retained, and by exciting jealousy, ill-will, and a disposition to retaliate, in the parties from whom equal privileges are withheld. And it gives to ambitious, corrupted, or deluded citizens (who devote themselves to the favorite nation), facility to betray or sacrifice the interests of their own country, without odium, sometimes even with popularity; gilding, with the appearances of a virtuous sense of obligation, a commendable deference for public opinion, or a laudable zeal for public good, the base or foolish compliances of ambition, corruption, or infatuation.


The American people do not need political parties in order to elect officials to government, and it is certainly not a Constitutional mandate. Yet, even so, that there is a clear addiction to these parties is more than evident, and even within the O.P.'s post, while suggesting that the incumbents will fall, there is clearly an advocacy for new political parties to be formed, as if there is no other answer outside of political parties. The genuine grip that both Democrat and Republican parties hold on this nation, exists because the people want it to, and a rejection of current parties in favor of newer formed parties is truly just politics as usual.

If we are to obtain some sort of peaceful revolution where the people restore the republic and reign in the machinations of politicians then a flat out rejection of all parties is necessary. The increasing high cost of political campaigns can be directly linked with the two party system in place. Millions of dollars need not be spent on a local level in order for people to make informed decisions about who they should elect, and indeed, perhaps the most informed decision one can make when voting in today's political climate, could very well be to vote for the least funded candidate and trust that this person will do no more damage to our republic than the better funded candidates would.

I have briefly touched upon concerns about how political science is taught in schools today, and in the short amount of space left, I would like to point out that modern day political science began with Machiavellian principles. It would be prudent for all who are the people to read The Prince by Machiavelli, and to come to understand that his fear based politics is indeed a primary tool used in politics today. Machiavelli advocated that the end justifies the means, but in reality, it is the means that always bring about an end. The antecedents to political science are rooted in moral and political philosophy, and in Western politics marked by Plato and Aristotle, and were more concerned with history than with theory.

[edit on 19-5-2010 by Jean Paul Zodeaux]



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 03:54 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Well no, it was very historically based. But it is true that since the Nixon presidency, trust has been decreasing. Trust and approval are two different things. So while FDR may not have been loved that much, he was trusted enough to remain in office for 4 terms. Trust died with Nixon's presidency when he proved that presidents can and do lie.

That said, we did discuss why parties exist as all. The Federalist papers say it as it is. People seek leaders and organize under them. This is inevitable. This is why there never will be a rejection of parties. because every leader forms a group, or party, or name, behind his movement. Even if they are not registered, they eventually become unofficially a party. It simply works that way. That is why I warned against blindly following whoever November chooses to make new leaders out of.

Basically, I do believe the incumbents will fail. I view this as a refreshing of the system. Politics as usual is politics unfortunately. And those new leaders will eventually become bad too. The dynastic cycle, I suppose.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 03:59 AM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 





That said, we did discuss why parties exist as all. The Federalist papers say it as it is. People seek leaders and organize under them. This is inevitable. This is why there never will be a rejection of parties. because every leader forms a group, or party, or name, behind his movement. Even if they are not registered, they eventually become unofficially a party. It simply works that way. That is why I warned against blindly following whoever November chooses to make new leaders out of.


It is highly unlikely, while discussing The Federalist Papers, that the Anti-Federalist Papers were discussed as well. The Federalists, were of course, pro strong central government, but the existence of the Federalist Papers and that these pamphlets served as a sales pitch for a federal government should make clear that not everyone was in agreement that a federal government was a good idea. The Anti-Federalist Papers has been buried and forgotten, and largely due to biased historians and political scientists, which should give a clue as to how scientific "political science" actually is.

Further the 22nd Amendment speaks volumes as to why no President since FDR has served more than two terms, but that is history talking, real history.

[edit on 19-5-2010 by Jean Paul Zodeaux]



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:07 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Well they were brought up. But I forget how in depth we went into them. Just that they were the future wigs I think.

Also, I've always been taught that that amendment was basically placed as an agreement that his time was too long and a somewhat republican revenge.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:19 AM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 



You were also, apparently taught to believe this:




So while FDR may not have been loved that much, he was trusted enough to remain in office for 4 terms. Trust died with Nixon's presidency when he proved that presidents can and do lie.


That the 22nd Amendment does exist explains fully why no President since that man has been elected to more than two terms. In all likelihood, had there not been a 22nd Amendment Presidents such as Ronald Regan and even the impeached William Jefferson Clinton had a very real shot at a third term and possibly more. It is arguable that even Bush II had a shot at a third term, so dismissing arguments by pretending the 22nd Amendment didn't have anything at all to do with why no President since FDR has had so many terms only reveals your own bias, not to mention that you seem to want to frame the 22nd Amendment as being a Republican Party ploy, which demonstrates clear bias on what you were taught, and what you have accepted as truth.

Political parties are bad news, but this is not your belief, and you are clearly advocating the political party system, and only propose to change the names and re-market that system. Politics as usual.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:29 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


I never said I accepted this as truth. I stated it was what I was taught, and that it makes kind of sense.

Political parties are the worst thing ever. But that does not change human nature/ Communism is also the best system ever, but incomparable with humanity. I am not endorsing parties. I am saying that is you have lemons, and people only want to eat them, you could do them the favor of adding sugar so they don't suffer.

Also, as far as I can see, FDR still got elected 4 times. That means that he had enough support. I can say I do not like the guy, and that if I was just elected as the opposition after nearly 2 decades under the other party, I'd first seek to make things more fair. Term limits seems the most logical.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:38 AM
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This is good news in a way.

I think this is just a taste of things to come in the second American revolution. Real change is coming. Not slogans and rhetoric.

If people in Washington think their jobs aren't safe and they might get voted out it might motivate them to do their jobs and serve the interests of the people instead of the interests of special interest groups. Which is exactly the goal of the second American revolution is.

And why should their job be safe when no one else's in America has that type of security anymore? If they still even have a job or home.

If you're a politician in the USA it might be a good time to start reading those bills and actually effecting some real reform.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:38 AM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 





I never said I accepted this as truth. I stated it was what I was taught, and that it makes kind of sense.


That it is making sense to you suggests strongly that you are, at the very least, accepting it as truth.




Political parties are the worst thing ever. But that does not change human nature/ Communism is also the best system ever, but incomparable with humanity. I am not endorsing parties. I am saying that is you have lemons, and people only want to eat them, you could do them the favor of adding sugar so they don't suffer.


If communism is incompatible with human nature, and it is, it could not possibly be the "best system ever". Adding sugar to a fruit isn't easing suffering, and people don't eat lemons because they prefer the sweetness of that fruit. Relying on platitudes such as; "if you get lemons then make lemonade" does not do much for political discourse. Whether it is in human nature to embrace political parties and reject the notion that such a thing is antithetical to freedom remains to be seen. What does appear to be a truism is that people don't really want to be free, but it is an appearance, and truly people will embrace the politics of expedience in order to deal with the daily bread of living. When such expedience no longer is expedient, then times change, and with it so does the culture. Culture is learned, and what can be learned can be unlearned.

Truth is not learned, it is discovered, and therein lies the difference between an education and knowledge. You can argue points being made here and support your arguments with what you've been taught, but if what you've been taught amounts to nothing more than propaganda, then where lies the truth? What knowledge do you possess that has led you to conclude that communism is the best system ever?



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:45 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Communism not only eliminates the political party by politics all together. A government exists to basically make sure no one goes around and kills and rampages. People just chill and do what they like, selling it for their well being.

It's ideal. It really is. But is is not good.

Also things can be good but incomparable with humanity. It would be great if no government was needed at all. But that does not work with nature.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 04:58 AM
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Originally posted by Gorman91
reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Communism not only eliminates the political party by politics all together. A government exists to basically make sure no one goes around and kills and rampages. People just chill and do what they like, selling it for their well being.

It's ideal. It really is. But is is not good.

Also things can be good but incomparable with humanity. It would be great if no government was needed at all. But that does not work with nature.


Communism does not eliminate political party politics it is a political party that endeavors to eliminate all other parties outside its own. Further, it usually the advocate of communism that will insist that governments exist to make sure no one goes around and kills and rampages. That governments do exist and that people do kill and rampage should give a clue as to how incorrect your assertion is.

Governments should exist to protect the individual and inalienable rights of the people. The Constitution for the United States of America makes clear in no uncertain terms this is why that government exists, beginning with the preamble, and ending with the Bill of Rights.

It is odd that you would believe that what is ideal is also not good. There is an inherent contradiction in such a statement that seems to suggest a woeful misunderstanding of the words being employed, and perhaps here too is yet another problem with modern day education. A political science major or student will go through their indoctrination courses while no real regard is given to the linguistics being employed.




Also things can be good but incomparable with humanity. It would be great if no government was needed at all. But that does not work with nature.


Nature did not create government, humanity did. I suppose we could point to other species such as the ant, and declare such a structure a government, but how much of such a declaration is simply ethnocentrism, and how much of that is actually truth? For practical purposes, government is an artificial institution created by humans.

If things are good but not compatible with humanity, then in terms of being human, what makes them so good? In terms of ethics a greater good is proposed and that greater good is defined as being the greatest good to the greatest amount. This understanding of good is wholly compatible with humanity, but what you are arguing is simple double speak that defies logic.



posted on May, 19 2010 @ 05:59 PM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Well the ideal is that every human being is educated and peaceful and by their own will, protects each other's products and well being, thus eliminating the need for government at all.

But this cannot happen in reality. It is double speak in a sense. I'll agree with you on that, but it is also reality. The facts are this:

Ideal: Every human being communally cares for and protects each other in a fair and balanced Utopian society where no money is needed and people can keep the sweat of their labor.

Reality: People steal cheat and kill. People are animals. And so, governments filled with more educated and better placed people ensure that the lower people are protected from these problems. People are not equal in other people's eyes. people discriminate, have biases, etc etc.


So you see, there is no wrong to it. We would all love to live freely without any taxes and no worries. But the reality is different. And for the time being, it is incompatible with human nature. We can swear each other to be the best person in the world, but that doesn't deny that we will inevitably go against our better halves for personal gain. That is the problem of humanity.

And so it is as simple as that. The ideal, the good, is incompatible with humanity. It's why we are a troubled species. We can imagine perfection, but our own nature denies us from reaching it.



posted on Jul, 29 2010 @ 04:29 PM
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Well I don't think suburbia has anything to do with it. Maybe the people in suburbia didn't hate the incumbents, or thought the alternatives were worse.

To answer your question, you should consider the process by which alternatives are made available. In the last Presidential election we had a choice between John McCain, who wanted to fight in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and Barack Obama who wanted to move the troops from Iraq to Afghanistan. And then there was Hillary Clinton who lied about having been in a war zone, who could have been the choice instead of Obama.

Can't we get any normal candidates? The answer is no, we are not allowed to have them. So the incumbent may just be seen as the lesser of available evils -- then stop worrying about it and go back to working, paying taxes and trying to raise the family.



posted on Jul, 29 2010 @ 04:38 PM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 


I'll believe it when I see it. Personally, I doubt it in the framework of the general election. During a primary, sure, that is where incumbents can be taken out. In the general? I doubt it. Sure would be good to see though. I'd almost rather see a bunch of lunatic zealots get in there and pass legislation that did things like banning any person formerly elected to any public from lobbying Congress.



posted on Jul, 29 2010 @ 08:13 PM
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Originally posted by pajoly
reply to post by Gorman91
 


I'll believe it when I see it. Personally, I doubt it in the framework of the general election. During a primary, sure, that is where incumbents can be taken out. In the general? I doubt it. Sure would be good to see though. I'd almost rather see a bunch of lunatic zealots get in there and pass legislation that did things like banning any person formerly elected to any public from lobbying Congress.


Well, one can try to take them out in the primary. But sometimes still ...

Last time he came up for election, I guess 4 years ago, Joe Lieberman in Connecticut had a strong primary challenge from Ned Lamont. Handsome, old-money wealthy, spoke well. And Lamont won the Democratic primary. Finally I thought we were rid of nasty Joe Lieberman.

Lamont ran to the left of Lieberman, so he should have won most of Connecticut in the General. He is from Greenwich in wealthy Fairfield County, the Republican part of the state, so he would get Republican votes as well. Should have been a shoo-in.

But Lieberman ran as an independent. And somehow, when the votes were counted, Lieberman still won. Unbelievable. That is why we are still stuck with him. I don't know if the vote counting was funny or what ...

The only conclusion I can get from it, is that we are not permitted to remove Lieberman from the Senate.



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