Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Camelot died with King Arthur, not Prince Teddy

So the big news is the death of Senator Edward M. "Teddy" Kennedy and wouldn't you know it, the press is treating this as if it's the biggest tragedy to face mankind ever. Look, I do feel bad for his children and the rest of his family. The loss of a parent/grandparent is always tragic. But in Kennedy's case, it wasn't as if it was sudden.

My mother passed away last March and while again, the loss of a loved one is certainly sad, I was comforted in the knowledge that after so many tortuous years of living with dementia and other ailments, she was finally in a better place.

While I know many on the left will freak out over what I'm about to say, but I'm not sure Teddy is in that same "better"place.

Yes, I know he was the "Lion of the Senate" and all that. But he was also a drunk, a horrible role model to his nephew, who was arrested for rape - only to get out of it because of his uncle's connections and most notably the man responsible for the death of Mary Jo Kopechne.

A liberal friend of mine was aghast when I mentioned her name today. He asked, "how long are you going to hold THAT over his head?"

My answer was to ask him a question. "If a poor southern - maybe white trash - guy did what Kennedy did that night in Chappaquiddick, do you think he would ever spend a free day again in his life?

His first reaction was that Kennedy was never charged with murder. But I think he knew enough not to try to put that one out there.

Look, Teddy Kennedy was a demagogue. He consistently put his party above the country he vowed to serve. What he did to Robert Bork back in 1987 was nothing short of criminal and unethical. Based on the way he lived his life - both in 1969 and since - leads me to believe that this man best be sure to bring something very cool to wear where he's going.

I never believed in the Camelot hyperbole and was sick to my stomach when various news agencies referred to his death as the "end of Camelot." The only reason the Kennedy's became American royalty is because the mainstream media put them there. They hated the Nixon and the Republicans in 1960 and so they fell in love with this young, handsome man (JFK) who was going to bring "hope" and "change" to the White House.

Ironically, JFK was actually a right-wing zealot, compared to his younger brother. John Kennedy believed in a strong military, fiscal responsibility and true bi-partisanship. But where JFK often triumphed, Teddy failed miserably.

Conventional wisdom states that the Chappaquiddick issue sunk Teddy's run for the White House (pardon the very good pun). But those who remember the 1980 election know that as unpopular as Jimmy Carter was, he was still endeared by his own party. It is almost impossible to unseat an incumbent President nowadays and while the Kopechne murder played a role, his part pretty much had already forgiven him.

But that doesn't serve the press' purpose of demonizing the Republicans, does it? So explain how the Republicans killed Kennedy's Presidential aspirations (another good pun) when they don't vote in the Democratic primaries?

Of course you can't. And the reason is that most people don't really bother to understand the facts. Not when we have "the most trusted man in America" - a personal friend to all the Kennedy's, Walter Cronkite - telling us that "that's the way it is" every night at 6 pm.

And you know I'm right because you see the same damn thing happening today with Obama. Well, that is unless you watch Chris Matthews on MSNBC. I swear, Matthews should not be on a news channel and instead he should be doing one of those Cinemax shows where people call a "love line" and talk about their steamiest fantasies. I'm beginning to think the "tingles" that went up his leg when Obama won have now reached the groin.

Teddy Kennedy was no hero. He was a drunk and a murderer and he does not deserve to be eulogized so beautifully. At least not until Mary Jo starts getting better treatment from the press.



Just a short note, Shayne, to let you know that you aren't screaming into the Internet abyss...that at least one person continues to read what you write and share. And I know I don't do this often enough, but I have to thank you for the invaluable personal window you provide into the maw of right-wing extremism. Your blog and the content therein is a crucial weight on the metaphorical scale I employ to maintain a balanced political perspective, helping to offset pie-in-the-sky dreamers and those who would pollute our communications with view of communism, social anarchism, anarchist communism, anarcho-syndicalism, Marxism-Leninism, Trotskyism, Maoism, and some branches of feminism and green politics/environmentalism...all so I can stay balanced and keep focus on the true state of the important issue of our day. Keep at it!

S said...

My distaste for Senator Kennedy has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with his moral fiber.

Why is it that you can not grasp that perhaps someone has opinions of his own, and not simply because of right-wing extremism.

Sorry, K. But this just smacks of arrogance. Better luck next time, Amigo.


Glad you are sharp enough to suss out artfully-rendered sarcasm and irony, Shayne, as I was truly concerned that you would accept my "thank you" at face value.

And as long as we are having so much fun out here...

Your 'arrogance' zinger is classic, coming as it did from one who so easily passes judgement on someone as a "murderer" (and publishes it!) without evidence, testimony, or direct knowledge of any kind. For THAT remark I really do have to thank you as the snicker I got out of it made my evening. Keep at it!

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