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Disgrace in Massachusetts. The Legacy of The People’s Champion Is Replaced By a Republican Backed By The Tea Bagger Movement.

The results of a presidential campaign built on PR branding called change  but after a year of governance has only delivered small change on the major issues of our time is producing worrisome results for Congressional Democrats swept into office to change the direction of this country.  This is reflected by the special election for the Senate seat of one of history’s most ardent defender of the rights and welfare of the average American, the “Liberal Lion” Ted Kennedy, whereby it was filled by a Republican backed by the far right tea bagger movement.  So what are the people that voted for change and a chance to stop the bankrupt policies of rolled backed tax rates on the richest Americans, tax breaks and crony capitalism for American corporations, the gutting of America’s meagar safety net, falling wages and destroyed pensions in the race to the bottom, shipping our manufacturing base overseas looking for modern day slave labor,  and massive militarism with 1000+ military bases in 135 countries, and deregulated predatory capitalism that has led to the American collapse starting in earnest in 2007?  How much darker is our future going to be with no real change in direction?  While Brown is not quite as radical as the tea bagger extremists that backed him in the election (along with some frustrated Democrats), he will not help correct the awful path of the ship of state.

Who to blame? 

In many respects, the Coakley campaign and intra-party squabbles are to blame.  The Coakley campaign ran an anemic campaign with limited campaign stumps.  It took corporate money from the health insurance interests which was another mistake probably seen as betrayal by many Democrats.  It even mispelled Massachusetts.  And then there is the party squabble indicated in the diary of “catlover72” at the Daily Kos which could have been a part of it.  Some of it says that during the primary,

According to my mom, the Western Mass Democrats got a lot more momentum in the primary because no one in Boston believed that Capuano could lose. Western Mass turned out, Boston and vicinity did not.

It went on to say,

Coakley, on the other hand, not only dropped the ball as everyone knows, but no politicians in Boston wanted their names associated with her after she won the primary. My mom isn’t high enough up the chain to know why this is (or maybe she is holding out on me because she doesn’t want anyone to read this and recognize her dishing the inside scoop – she is old school and thinks she shouldn’t be talking publicly about this).

However, one who is educated, not in the propaganda of these times, but political realities, knows there is a growing apathy among Democratic party voters and activists that were looking for definitive policy changes from the last couple of decades into something traditionally progressive such as reregulation of the financial industry, buttressing of the social safety net in hard times, and some creativity on the job front in the tradition of FDR and the New Deal, and not Jack Kemp’s “Reaganomics”. They see broken promises on the issue of healthcare. All this lies squarely on the shoulders of the “DLC”, a self appointed leadership group brought in under Clinton that is corporate in nature and seeks to shift the multinational largess of corporate donations away from the Republican Party. In this shift, the Democratic Party since the election of Bill Clinton has moved toward “free trade” policies, deregulation of business and the financial sector, privatization of government functions, chipping away at our social safety net such as social security and medicare/medicaid, ramped up spending on the military industrial complex and foreign interventionism, as good an any Republican of today. In doing so, the party on occasion has abandoned its traditional coalition of organized labor, civil libertarians and civil rights groups, women’s rights group and many others. Their influence is also probably responsible for tabling Kucinich’s impeachment resolutions of Bush and Cheney to die in committee. They have even adopted much of the language of Republicans calling fellow Democrats “the left” and “too liberal”. All of this is leading to growing apathy of Democratic voters who saw a candidate in Barack Obama speak like a New Deal Democrat but filled his cabinet and advisors, particularly concerning the economy, with Clintonite “New Democrats”. And they have seen the result in the way the financial bailout and stimulus package has been handled (except with the cash for clunkers program) as well a give away bill to the insurance industry instead of a public national healthcare program.

In the meantime, a Tea Bag movement financed by the rightwing infrastructure and radicalized by hate radio talk, political dishonesty, and a tinge of racism from the howling hyenas of rightwing media, has what Stephen Colbert humorously calls the American “backwash” coming too close for comfort in determining future governance. Even the mainstream press on occasion legitimizes some of this movement’s darker aspects.

Will historians writing about this era in the future call it “post modern America, the latest failed state”?

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Edward M. Kennedy 1932-2009 “For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dream shall never die”

For all of those that want to keep the dream of a better world and a better, more compassionate country with a greater amount of human empathy. For those that wish to share their memories of Senator Kennedy, go here . To follow Kennedy family events, go here .