Sunday morning John Kerry appeared on ABC's 'THIS WEEK" with George Stephanopoulos, where he trumpeted Barack Obama as the man who should be president. Kerry posited that Obama would be a transformational president who wouldn't fall prey to swiftboaters. Kerry promised to FIGHT to ensure that NO Democratic candidate is swiftboated in 2008. He swore that during his own candidacy in 2004, he fought back quickly and adequately against his swiftboat accusers with a "counter press conference" immediately after the assaults began. Kerry maintained that his defense was consistently strong, but not carried by media due to a lack of funds.
This is NOT true!!! John Kerry didn't fight back during his campaign. Nor did he challenge the highly questionable results of the election!
John Kerry is the arbiter of bad judgement and the bastion of backing down. He's deluded himself into believing that Americans have forgotten his disastrous candidacy and forgiven him for it. This may be the case for some - but for those who value peace, social justice, and the moral standing of America, the mere mention of John Kerry is cause to recoil. Even the most cursory observation of America's decline since 2005 should rekindle disgust toward John Kerry. Any presumption that his endorsement of Barack Obama is an asset to Obama's campaign is ludicrous. Weakness can't cultivate strength. Kerry's endorsement is il bocio della morte — the proverbial kiss of death. Kerry, himself, is persona non grata and should stay away from this election.
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Kerry's endorsement of Obama fuels concerns for Obama's capacity to take on the Republican spin machine if he wins the nomination. It hits too close to home. Seeing John Kerry on any podium reminds us how his weak-kneed candidacy contributed mightily to the further decline of this nation. It gives us further pause when considering the similar styles of the two men, as to whether Obama could defeat the corporatocracy should he win the presidency. Seeing them together - equally tall, lanky, mild-mannered and intellectual, and observing their scholarly approach to campaigning, kick starts memories of Kerry's vulnerability and incapacity to survive the Republican dirty tricks. Kerry caved and lost. Sadly, a Kerry endorsement does NOT conjure up images of success. It prompts thoughts of fecklessness and failure. It's a journey down misery memory lane.
John Edwards, Kerry's running mate in 2004, needn't bemoan not getting John Kerry's endorsement. The two men have been estranged since Kerry forfeited the opportunity to scrutinize the outcome of the 2004 election, against the pleas of John Edwards to take it on. Between Kerry and Edwards, Edwards was the more able and courageous contender, and the man I believe would have won in Kerry's stead. Kerry does bring Obama a dowry of millions of Democratic voters - a potential gold mine for any candidate. But on that list are likely tens of thousands of voters who disdain John Kerry for delivering them George Bush. For voters like myself, who worked hard to elect John Kerry in 2004, Kerry's sudden appearance in this campaign evokes negative memories. Here's a sampling of a bit of mine.
In November 2004, I drove to swing state Nevada with several activists from Los Angeles to get out the vote for John Kerry. We spent 3 days encouraging residents in Las Vegas to vote. After an arduous round the clock schedule, which included a face-off against pro-war (military-dodging) students at the University of Nevada/Las Vegas, an energized protest against visiting war criminal, Dick Cheney, excursions to hotels, restaurants, businesses and even strip clubs to entice Nevadans to vote, our activist troupe ended its whirlwind "get out the vote" marathon at a planned victory party in a huge hotel ballroom. The massive hall was packed with enthusiastic Democrats - many who had trekked to Nevada as we had to ensure a Kerry win. Revelers danced and drank and watched giant televisions to monitor the voting results. As the dismal numbers filtered in, which astonishingly showed George W. Bush in the lead, the mood in the hall became somber.
How could Bush be in the lead??!! Surely there was some error. Why would Americans re-elect war criminals? Who could support the on-going American rampage on Iraq? Or encourage proponents of the Christian rapture? Or promote the wealth of corporations, the deterioration of the middle class, and an increase in American poverty?
We were all well aware that voting improprieties could occur. Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman of Free Press, and investigative journalist, Greg Palast, educated and warned us. Bev Harris of BlackBoxVoting.org was relentless (and still is) in informing us of the dangers of Diebold (now Premier Election Solutions) and ESS touch screen/paperless voting systems. Knowing how likely it was that the very same fraud that occurred in 2000 could occur again in 2004, election protection patriots spent weeks in Ohio trying to safeguard the election from Republican partisan, Kenneth Blackwell - the Ohio Secretary of State who was not coincidentally co-chair of the Bush-Cheney campaign. Other election protection advocates, who were also proponents of civil rights, feared a recurrence of election fraud in Florida like that which happened in 2000 during Bush v. Gore, and traveled to Florida to aid disenfranchised voters, mostly African Americans who'd lost their homes and polling places when hurricanes destroyed their cities. http://archive.salon.com/politics/feature/2000/12/04/voter_file/index.html
All these issues — election fraud, Christian fundamentalism, and the exceptionalist perversion of "might means right" contributed to Bush remaining in the White House another four years. But the biggest reason Bush was NOT sent packing back to Texas in 2004 was the incompetence of his opponent, John Kerry. In my years of studying American presidential politics, I have never witnessed a more lackluster, weak-kneed candidate than John Kerry. He had the appearance of a candidate, but none of the substance. I know there are conspiracy theorists who believe John Kerry colluded to give the Presidency to his Skull and Bones brother, George Bush. I'm not in the conspiracy camp. It's hard for me to imagine Kerry "throwing" the election - although with his irrationally dismal performance, anything is impossible. What is more plausible than his collusion, is his incompetence. All those months while John Kerry empowered the swiftboaters with his spinelessness, allowed his war record to be decimated, and his medals to be tarnished, I screamed at my TV and begged him to fight back. I called his campaign almost daily asking why John Kerry wouldn't defend himself. I offered strategy suggestions to secure his win. To no avail. I began to despise him for his cowardice and for throwing my nation away.
And now, four years later, John Kerry appears yet again - replete with his signature serpentine tongue. He was then, and still is, the embodiment of failure.
As I stated previously, there are similarities between John Kerry and Barack Obama. Mainly in demeanor. Obama has a quicker response than Kerry when challenged. But the softballs Obama is fielding now are nothing compared to the bricks he'll be fielding later. It's obvious that Obama is embracing Kerry's endorsement - something I'm not certain John Edwards would do if it had been offered. In 2004, John Edwards wanted to FIGHT every swiftboater, every untruth, and every attack launched at the Kerry/Edwards ticket. Sadly Edwards, the FIGHTER, was saddled with a presidential running mate who ducked the blows. Because of John Kerry's ineffective candidacy and inability to make the judgements necessary to win, America and the world have decayed under four more years of war criminals Cheney and Bush.
I'm grateful John Edwards severed his ties with John Kerry. I would disrespect Edwards if he hadn't. In 2004, America deserved to be fought for. John Kerry was a quitter. John Edwards wanted to fight. Obama, on the other hand, is sidling up to this weakling. If Obama gets the nomination, will he have the grit to win? Right now it appears that John McCain may be the Republican nominee. Between Edwards and Obama, Edwards is better suited to take on John McCain.
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