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Friday, April 2, 2010

Blanche Lincoln's Dick Move

April 1st, 2010

by F. Grey Parker

Upon seeing Sen. Blanche Lincoln's (D-AR) desperation attack against progressive challenger Bill Halter, my first reaction was amazement. So unbelievably beneath any standards of decency was her broadside, that I had to resist blurting out a few choice expletives at my desk. The first word that came to mind starts with a "C". I took a deep breath and chided myself for considering so sexist a term. Then, it occurred to me that the best description of her crassly dishonest smear was indeed gender based.

It's called a "dick move." That is the only accurate assessment.

Lincoln has got to go. She is arguably one of the most craven opportunists in the Senate today as is evidenced by a recent  WSJ blog post by Susan Davis. In it, Lincoln is quoted as saying...

"This is why I voted against giving more money to Wall Street, against the auto company bailout, against the public option health care plan, and against the cap and trade bill that would have raised energy costs on Arkansans—none of those were right for Arkansas. Some in my party didn’t like it very much, but I approve this message because I don’t answer to my party, I answer to Arkansas.”

That's right. No "bailout" for Wall Street. Consider what unemployment might look like if we hadn't kept "too big to fail" from failing. Really thinking ahead, Sen. Lincoln. 

One element of the so-called "auto company bailout" she opposed that gets very little play is the effect that the bankruptcy of American auto makers would have had on national security. In an interesting 2009 article by Joseph B. White, it is made clear that too much of our basic parts already come from other nations. Preventing the collapse of the American auto industry is much the same as preventing the collapse of the American steel industry. My question is this... as we are already so dependent on foreign metals just to make the next five-child SUV, where are we going to get the raw materials for things like more tanks and Humvees? If we, God forbid, actually have to fight a war against a country with a real army, are we going to have to ask that hypothetical enemy or it's economic allies for the resources to build reserve equipment? 

She says no public option, by golly. That would just bring us too much closer to where every other Western-Industrialized nation is. You know... the mid to late 20th Century? Apparently, that is too close for her comfort. Forget, for a moment, the absurdly American notion that every single activity that any human can possibly do should have a profit motive. Let's look at the facts of medicine's impact on national GDPs in the West. 

As far as her views on cap and trade are concerned, it's arguable that Arkansas deserves very little voice on national environmental issues. The state has one of the worst records with regard to mercury release from coal-energy production and their poultry industry's impact on America's networks of streams and rivers is abominable. The state of Oklahoma went so far as to file suit several years ago in response to such pollution. Of course, Blanche Lincoln endorses the removal of animal wastes from the list of hazardous materials covered by the EPA's Superfund clean up program.

Mercury saturation stunts mental development in children. Maybe she is suffering from it's effects herself. Perhaps, mercury caused intellectual deficits can be blamed if she is re-elected. 

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