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Kennedy at the Aquarium--SMOKIN!

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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:29 PM
Original message
Kennedy at the Aquarium--SMOKIN!
Sen. Kennedy and much of the Mass congressional delegation were at the New England Aquarium this am, along with the State Att'y General and Senator Jeffords as part of Jeffords "Listening tour" on environmental issues in the northeast. The immediate topic was mercury contamination, but MAN....

I don't think we were expecting this to be a unified public slam at Bush admin environmental policies, but that's what it was. I can only conclude they were using this little local level thing to say some unified and harsh things about ShrumpCorp in front of the TV cameras.

And unified they were, by a single word: "LIE." As in the Bush administration LIES." Someone had a "Clear skies=Clear lies" poster, and that was the theme they ALL kept hitting. That this is "deceptive advertising" of a kind that absolutely characterizes this administration.

Jeffords put things on the national-level right off the bat when he raised the topic that he is ranking member of the senate environment committee, which is holding hearings tomorrow with on the new appointee for EPA head. He said Whitman had left because she couldn't stand the hypocrisy--can't directly quote it, but it was harsh. He wouldn't say how he was going to vote, but he left no doubt he was skeptical that the new guy was going to be able to stand up to the Bushies.

Kennedy kept it on that level, continuing to slam BushCorp for putting nice names on horrendous policies and rolling back the gains we've struggled for over the years. Understand: this kind of event is usually very mild-mannered. I think everyone was stunned at how PISSED OFF he was. The press as much as any (see below).

What impressed me the most: 1) the consistency with which they referred to lies and deception on the part of the administration--if there is a national strategy to go after the Flying Chimp's credibility, these guys are all on the same page. Very encouraging.

2) This was way cool--after the official statements things broke up and a press klatsch formed around Kennedy. The way they were gathered I was able to stand immediately behind the Senator--close enough to smell his cologne--and listen in. He was completely going off on the cost of the Iraq war--the $87 billion plus the other billions already asked for and the billions we know about that haven't yet been asked for. Really flaming--very angry tone, as in fact his speech had had as well. Essentially they were asking if he was going to back off the "fraudulent war" statement, and he was answering with MORE of it. I heard a press question saying something like "isn't that a little harsh" and his response was High Ire: "You can call it what you want but those are the facts!" kind of thing. If I'd been expecting anything like this I'd have brought my own pad & paper--can't give the exact words, but the effect on the press was evident. As he moved away I stayed among the press guys, who were visibly moved, trying to figure out what to make of this--again, this is not what you usually expect from one of these events. "Wow," somebody said, "he's really on fire!"

A last juicy bit: as I walked off the plaza I was walking with one of our Congressmen--McGovern, I believe, and some other politico came up and made some comment about Kennedy being "on fire." Suddenly McGovern was launching into his own little diatribe about how they'd only debated Iraq for "one measely day" and how the Congress had really abnegated its duty. "You voted against, didn't you," the guy said, and he responded that he had. "Unlike Kerry" the other guy said--a little bait that McGovern didn't rise to. But WOW, he was PISSED.

Really nice to know that, yep, we have guys in there who really are angry and are trying to stand up to the bastards.

Now I wish I had pushed harder to get local DUers to show up. Quite a few New England environmental activists hanging around, some MassPIRG people and so on, but it would have been nice to have a bigger crowd--not to mention some other DUers to bounce my impressions off of.

I'll be posting pics on the Aquarium website later today--I'll drop in a line at DU when they're up.

Note: the opinions herein in no way represent or reflect the views of the New England Aquarium, which does not endorse political candidates or parties--they are my own private views entirely.
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Eloriel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
1. Good report
I'm relieved that a few are waking from their sleep.

Eloriel
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ewagner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:36 PM
Response to Original message
2. Thanks for the report
I'm glad Kennedy is speaking out and even MORE THRILLED that he isn't backing down....no parsing of words, no softening of the rhetoric.
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dennis4868 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:37 PM
Response to Original message
3. Meanwhile back at the White House....
Lieberman, Daschle, etc... are kissing Bush's arse!
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IrateCitizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:38 PM
Response to Original message
4. The test balloon has been floated....
For that, we should ALL be thankful to Sen. Kennedy. Now, the question is, will more and more Democrats (and moderate, thinking Republicans like Olympia Snowe and Lincoln Chaffee) come on board with this?

We can only hope so....
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:41 PM
Response to Original message
5. Great heads up - Aquarium? - there was nothing in Globe on this!
They gave it no advance PR in the Globe - I wonder how the Globe and local TV will cover it - or more likely - how deep they will bury it!

Aaron Brown should get Kennedy on his show- and ask, and thereby put to bed - all the bullshit questions about Kennedy being "harsh" to our AWOL flysuit hero.
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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:01 PM
Response to Reply #5
10. We've always had good coverage
...on our events in the past and I think they'll play it up. The local stations were all there, including that little guy with the mustache who does political reporting for channel 56. We have good press relations and this was good stuff, with a photogenic backdrop. We'll see. Gotta try to get home in time for the news tonight.
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Unknown Known Donating Member (829 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:45 PM
Response to Original message
6. Thanks for your great report!!
Edited on Mon Sep-22-03 12:46 PM by Unknown Known
Kennedy is NOT backing down. He must have something on them. And Jeffords piling on, too!! Mon dieu!!

This EPA thing is gonna be big as well. :bounce:
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KoKo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:48 PM
Response to Original message
7. Wow! Great report......thanks for sharing it. Too bad you didn't have a
tape recorder. Maybe the local news there will show clips and it will get picked up by the cables!
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sduncang Donating Member (120 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:48 PM
Response to Original message
8. Good for Ted Kennedy....
I just love it. Thanks for the post. Tune in to the right wing radio talk shows and hear them rant....
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MrPrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 12:51 PM
Response to Original message
9. Kennedy Put some Calcium in his backbone
He didn't turtle on CNN yesterday either...

" Well, Senator Edward Kennedy joins us now from Boston.

Senator, hateful rhetoric at the president -- is that what this is?

KENNEDY: Well, it's basically politics as usual. This is the same kind of response that the Republicans had for Max Cleland when they called him unpatriotic after he lost three limbs in Vietnam. It's the same kind of rhetoric from the Republicans that they had for Tom Daschle when he questioned the administration's policy.

It will be the same kind of rhetoric, I guess that they're going to have for the American people who are questioning the administration's policy in Iraq. This is a failed, flawed, bankrupt policy. The American people want answers. They want to know what the peace policy is, what is really going to secure the peace in Iraq? What the cost is going to be to the American taxpayers and when will we be able to bring home our troops with honor?

WOODRUFF: Senator, do you know for a fact that the administration did what it did in Iraq for political reasons, which is in essence what you were charging?

KENNEDY: There's no question in my mind that the White House has hyped the political aspects of the war in Iraq. Karl Rove himself, the principal spokesperson for the Republican Party addressed a Republican National Committee out in Los Angeles in January 2001 and talked about the advantages that this war would have for Republican candidates.

So we also see the bitterness that the Republicans have for anyone that questions -- raising these serious questions about their policy. So they understand what they're doing. They're questioning the patriotisms of those that are asking the questions, but the fact is the American people are asking the questions and they should ask the questions.

The administration's had an initial tie between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein; they rejected that. They said we were in an imminent threat of being attacked by nuclear war; that has not worked out. They said we are going there because of weapons of mass destructions; that isn't so. They also said we wouldn't have to ask the American taxpayer for money for reconstruction because there's sufficient oil reserves there and that's wrong, too.

WOODRUFF: But, Senator, it's a very, very harsh thing indeed to say that this president, in essence, has spent the lives of now hundreds of American young men and women for political reasons. Is that really what you're saying?

KENNEDY: What we -- all of us are saying is that the president of the United States ought to come clear with the American people in terms of the cost of this war and also recognize we never had a peace policy. The administration is asking us now for $87 billion more dollars. There's a blank check for this administration and there is no peace policy. They're making it up day by day and I believe that the American men and women that are in the service that are over there are effectively in a shooting gallery, and I met with two that just returned from Iraq this morning who have been back for a period of two days. They also want to know the answers.

The American people are entitled to answers, not shifting rationale, which this administration has given.

WOODRUFF: Senator, the other charge that you make that almost $2 billion of the $4 billion that's been spent on Iraq, you believe it's being used to bribe other leaders to send in troops to Iraq. Do you have proof of this?

KENNEDY: Bribe, coerce, incentivise. We're going to see the announcement this weekend, announcement that the United States is going to loan Turkey $8.5 billion and we're anticipating that the Turks are going to provide military assistance to the American forces in Iraq. You know it didn't have to be this way. We wouldn't have to be providing these billions of dollars to these countries to incentivise them or coerce them or bribe them to send their troops in if we had done it the right way -- if we had gone to the United Nations, if we had built an international constituency.

The American taxpayers are paying for that and they're paying for those extended loans to Turkey that are going to be announced this weekend, and we're paying for it in also the support for these other troops that are coming in as well.

WOODRUFF: Senator Edward Kennedy with some very tough words for President Bush and the Bush administration. Senator, we thank you very much for talking with us.

KENNEDY: Thank you very much.

WOODRUFF: We appreciate it."

http://www.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0309/19/ip.00.html

no wonder he didn't get more time!!

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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:08 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Wood-RUFF. Rrrrrruuff, ruff ruff ruff!
I remember when she used to do hard-hitting documentaries for PBS's Frontline. Before she became a cute little yapping pooch for the Bush admin. I think I have more contempt for her than just about any of the blowdried "journalists" on Tee Vee, because she actually KNOWS what she's doing.
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mhr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:26 PM
Response to Reply #9
15. Great Contribution
It is good to see that at least one Democrat is taking the issues to heart and speaking some of the plain truth!
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rocktivity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:17 PM
Response to Reply #9
22. GOOD ONES, TEDDY!!!
Edited on Mon Sep-22-03 02:18 PM by rocknation
WOODRUFF: Senator, hateful rhetoric at the president -- is that what this is?
KENNEDY: ...This is the same kind of response that the Republicans had for Max Cleland when they called him unpatriotic after he lost three limbs in Vietnam...


Good for him for not succumbing to the cheap emotionalism of the question. And great for him for strangling the Repubs on their OWN rhetoric--I don't think they've been doing enough of that.


KENNEDY: ...Karl Rove himself, the principal spokesperson for the Republican Party, addressed a Republican National Committee...and talked about the advantages that this war would have for Republican candidates.

Brilliant! I said this over a year ago: "OUT" KARL ROVE! Let the American people know that there are TWO unelected Republicans running this country--into the ground!!!!!


rocknation

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CaptainMidnight Donating Member (611 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
12. DrBB
Thanx for this!

(fellow Bostonian, in exile in Hollywood)

Captain Mike
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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. We'll try to keep it from falling apart for ya
...until you get back. :)
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Gloria Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:23 PM
Response to Original message
14. I watched Kennedy on CNN--he was TRULY PISSED...he was
madder than I've ever seen him.....
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xxqqqzme Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:49 PM
Response to Reply #14
17. it is truly heartening 2
finally C someone as pissed off as I have been since 12/00!
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TacticalPeek Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:30 PM
Response to Original message
16. "Bring 'em on"?
Hooah to Senator Kennedy for bringing it on! Music to my ears.

Thanks, DrBB!

I stole these numbers from another post. Let the Senator know he's got support on this, since I'm sure he's getting hammered from the dark side.

"Ted Kennedy's numbers are -

in Washington: (202) 224 - 4543
in Boston: (617) 565 - 3170
snip
By the way, the toll-free Capitol Hill switchboard, in case you wanna call somebody else in Congress or the Senate, is...

1 (800) 648 - 3516"
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candy331 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:55 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. Kennedy has
some past baggage in his past when a woman was killed in a car with him and he left the scene and did not report it for some time. Can't quite remember the exact year and scenario of this. I bring this up because i wonder how far back will ones go to discredit him especially since he is stepping to the forefront and speaking so forcefully.

I've read here where Al Sharpton will never be able to live down the Tawanna Brawley thing so is all well with Kennedy? I have to say I love it though because the only way to put the fire of the Repugs out is to use their own fire of lies and set them on fire with it.

"FIGHT FIRE WITH FIRE".
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Tatiana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:52 PM
Response to Original message
18. Good ol' Teddy!
He makes me proud to be a Democrat.
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quinnox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
20. I saw Kennedy a few months ago on Cspan blowing the
lid off the Senate roof! He was absolutley livid about Bush's bait and switch on the No Child Left Behind legislation. He was raging about how Bush and the GOP said they would give a certain amount of funding to it, and then they try to cut the funding.
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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:13 PM
Response to Original message
21. That's great!
My God! That's about the most encouraging thing I've heard, seen or read in the past week! A year ago, it seemed like *no-one in either the Senate or the House would stand up to Bu$h&CO and question their motives. I thought the fight had gone out of every last one of them (except for CMB, who never loses her chutzpah or her conviction).

Now we've got some of the most respected and established men in office tearing Whistle-Ass a new name and deconstructing the myth... and people are LISTENING!




As an aside, "He said Whitman had left because she couldn't stand the hypocrisy--can't directly quote it, but it was harsh..."
I'm getting curious re: if any of the dissafected staff members who step down could be persuaded to come clean and explain why they really left. In detail. (Are there books or websites concerning this that I don't know about?)
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IrateCitizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:23 PM
Response to Reply #21
25. Check out the most recent episode of NOW with Bill Moyers...
They ran an extensive piece on the Whitman EPA. One of the long-timers who resigned basically said that the possibility of standing up to the WH never entered Whitman's mind -- for her, it was first and foremost important to be a "loyal Republican" and the responsibility of her position to the citizens was somewhere down the list.

http://www.pbs.org/now.
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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #21
27. Yeah, that was part of what surprised me
That's not exactly the OFFICIAL explanation as to why she bailed, is it? That she left in disgust at being continually undercut and overruled by the ideologues? Wasn't it "To spend more time with her family"? Jeffords putting it the way he did was illuminating.
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TacticalPeek Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #21
29. Commendable public service performed at this site of resignations!
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TacticalPeek Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 05:43 PM
Response to Reply #21
30. No one in Senate or House?
It would be sinful to overlook the high-octane duty and honor of Senator Byrd. And Senator Graham and others.

:kick:
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maggrwaggr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:18 PM
Response to Original message
23. political viagara
looks like TK's finally taken some.

It's about time. Where's he been the last year or so????
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rocktivity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:22 PM
Response to Original message
24. Didn't a band named Boston
Edited on Mon Sep-22-03 02:24 PM by rocknation
do a song named Smokin'?


rocknation

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tabasco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:23 PM
Response to Original message
26. Were there any "Greens" present ?
To hear about Bush's devastation of the environment?
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OrdinaryTa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 04:01 PM
Response to Original message
28. Flipper Endorses Kerry
Nothing wrong with backflips! If you like flexible politicians, Kerry's the man. Talks one way and votes another. Can't pin him down at all. He's a true "flipper".

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