Sunday, April 29, 2007

Anger And Wit: A Powerful Combination

Democratic Presidential candidate Mike Gravel, formerly virtually unknown although first to declare, made a lot of sense on Thursday night in a debate I couldn't catch. Fortunately Joe Lauria of the Boston Globe had me covered, and reported that during the debate, Gravel
said the early leading Democratic candidates "frightened" him because they had taken nothing off the table, including nuclear weapons, for possible military action against Iran.

"Tell me, Barack, who do you want to nuke?" he asked Senator Barack Obama of Illinois.

"I'm not planning on nuking anybody right now, Mike," Obama replied.

"Good, then we're safe for a while," Gravel said.
He's not just funny; he's absolutely spot-on!
"This war was lost the day that George Bush invaded Iraq on a fraudulent basis," he said in the debate.
No kidding, Mike! ... um ... Right ON, Senator Gravel!!

You can see more of Mike Gravel here:

Gravel has a solid anti-war history but and therefore no money:
A native of Springfield, Mass., Gravel served two terms in the Senate, representing Alaska from 1969 to 1981. He made his mark as a fierce Vietnam war critic who staged a one-man filibuster that led to the end of the military draft. He drafted legislation to end funding for the war and released the Pentagon Papers, which detailed government deception over Vietnam, at the end of June 1971.

"He started out with less money than the cost of a John Edwards haircut," said Elliott Jacobson, Gravel's national finance director.

Gravel told reporters after the debate: "We stayed in a $55 motel. I'll hitchhike to the next debate if I have to."
He's not just anti-war and anti-Bush; he has some good ideas too:
Believing that Congress has the power to both declare and end wars, he called for a law to end the war.

Gravel advocates a constitutional amendment and a federal statute establishing legislative procedures for citizens to make laws through ballot initiatives.

He also supports the Fair Tax, which would eliminate the Internal Revenue Service and corporate and individual income taxes, replacing them with a 23 percent national sales tax on all new goods and services. Each month, taxpayers would receive a check to offset the tax on basic items such as food and medicine.
Whoa! No wonder I'd never heard of him! I'll be paying attention from now on, though, and so will a lot of other people.
"He's the one to say not only that the emperor has no clothes, but that the emperor wannabes have no clothes," said national pollster John Zogby, adding, "There is an angry voter. I don't know how that will take shape, it's way too early. But you got a sense why Mike Gravel is in the race on Thursday and that he is in the race."

The reaction to Gravel's performance has overwhelmed his campaign. His aides said they got more requests for interviews yesterday than in the first 12 months of the campaign.

Gravel's website could not handle the flood of hits after the debate, they said. Bloggers complained that they were ready to donate money but were unable to get into the website.
I'm pretty sure they'll get that fixed right away.

There's more on Mike Gravel here and here, and a tip of the frozen cap to my Australian friend Gandhi for another good catch -- and a whole passel o' great blogs: Bush Death Watch, Howard Death Watch and Riding The Juggernaut!

There's even more about Mike Gravel here, and another frozen tip to another down-under friend with another passel o' blogs: Keep an eye on Lukery and Wot Is It Good 4, Kill the Messenger, Let Sibel Edmonds Speak, and disclose, denny!

Zogby usually gets the numbers right, but he may have been misunderestimating when he said "there is an angry voter."

There are zillions of angry voters. And David Michael Green is one of them. He makes a lot of sense, too, despite (or maybe because of) the anger, in "Schadenfreude Is My Middle Name"
I’m not an angry man. But I am angry.

I’m not a bitter person. But, boy, am I bitter.

And I’m not generally given to vindictiveness. But, you know what? Right now I’m open to persuasion.

The Bush administration is now beginning an inexorable process which will change its status from the worst administration in American history to the publicly-acknowledged worst administration in American history. I, for one, couldn’t be more delighted.

That delight is only partly based on having been on the receiving end of their atrocities these last six years. And it is only partly based on the assurance that those gifts will keep giving for decades into the future, like a bad case of political herpes.

And that delight is also only partly based on their motivations and the scale of their transgressions. People who believe that the regressive right came to Washington to implement a legitimate ideology that just happens to be different from ours, or who believe that they meant well but, ironically, the first MBA president couldn’t manage his way out of an empty wading pool, even with the entire federal bureaucracy to assist him – such people fundamentally misunderstand this administration and the movement which they spearhead.
I can't run it all here, and no excerpt can do it justice. You just have to read it all. Then hang around and discuss it in the comments thread, if you will. Good points, bad points ... certainly lots of interesting points to talk about.