Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Unfeeling President

E.L. Doctorow is the author of several critically acclaimed novels.

If you have not read this essay that he wrote for the East Hampton Star, back in the fall of 2004, it's time you do. If you have read it, it's time for a revisit.

The Unfeeling President
I fault this president for not knowing what death is. He does not suffer the death of our 21-year-olds who wanted to be what they could be. On the eve of D-Day in 1944 General Eisenhower prayed to God for the lives of the young soldiers he knew were going to die. He knew what death was. Even in a justifiable war, a war not of choice but of necessity, a war of survival, the cost was almost more than Eisenhower could bear.

But this president does not know what death is. He hasn't the mind for it. You see him joking with the press, peering under the table for the weapons of mass destruction he can't seem to find, you see him at rallies strutting up to the stage in shirt sleeves to the roar of the carefully screened crowd, smiling and waving, triumphal, a he-man.

He does not mourn. He doesn't understand why he should mourn. He is satisfied during the course of a speech written for him to look solemn for a moment and speak of the brave young Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

But you study him, you look into his eyes and know he dissembles an emotion which he does not feel in the depths of his being because he has no capacity for it. He does not feel a personal responsibility for the 1,000 dead young men and women who wanted to be what they could be.

They come to his desk not as youngsters with mothers and fathers or wives and children who will suffer to the end of their days a terribly torn fabric of familial relationships and the inconsolable remembrance of aborted life . . . they come to his desk as a political liability, which is why the press is not permitted to photograph the arrival of their coffins from Iraq.

How then can he mourn? To mourn is to express regret and he regrets nothing. He does not regret that his reason for going to war was, as he knew, unsubstantiated by the facts. He does not regret that his bungled plan for the war's aftermath has made of his mission-accomplished a disaster. He does not regret that, rather than controlling terrorism, his war in Iraq has licensed it. So he never mourns for the dead and crippled youngsters who have fought this war of his choice.

He wanted to go to war and he did. He had not the mind to perceive the costs of war, or to listen to those who knew those costs. He did not understand that you do not go to war when it is one of the options but when it is the only option; you go not because you want to but because you have to.

Yet this president knew it would be difficult for Americans not to cheer the overthrow of a foreign dictator. He knew that much. This president and his supporters would seem to have a mind for only one thing -- to take power, to remain in power, and to use that power for the sake of themselves and their friends.

A war will do that as well as anything. You become a wartime leader. The country gets behind you. Dissent becomes inappropriate. And so he does not drop to his knees, he is not contrite, he does not sit in the church with the grieving parents and wives and children. He is the president who does not feel. He does not feel for the families of the dead, he does not feel for the 35 million of us who live in poverty, he does not feel for the 40 percent who cannot afford health insurance, he does not feel for the miners whose lungs are turning black or for the working people he has deprived of the chance to work overtime at time-and-a-half to pay their bills - it is amazing for how many people in this country this president does not feel.

But he will dissemble feeling. He will say in all sincerity he is relieving the wealthiest 1 percent of the population of their tax burden for the sake of the rest of us, and that he is polluting the air we breathe for the sake of our economy, and that he is decreasing the quality of air in coal mines to save the coal miners' jobs, and that he is depriving workers of their time-and-a-half benefits for overtime because this is actually a way to honor them by raising them into the professional class.

And this litany of lies he will versify with reverences for God and the flag and democracy, when just what he and his party are doing to our democracy is choking the life out of it.

But there is one more terribly sad thing about all of this. I remember the millions of people here and around the world who marched against the war. It was extraordinary, that spontaneous aroused oversoul of alarm and protest that transcended national borders. Why did it happen? After all, this was not the only war anyone had ever seen coming. There are little wars all over he world most of the time.

But the cry of protest was the appalled understanding of millions of people that America was ceding its role as the last best hope of mankind. It was their perception that the classic archetype of democracy was morphing into a rogue nation. The greatest democratic republic in history was turning its back on the future, using its extraordinary power and standing not to advance the ideal of a concordance of civilizations but to endorse the kind of tribal combat that originated with the Neanderthals, a people, now extinct, who could imagine ensuring their survival by no other means than pre-emptive war.

The president we get is the country we get. With each president the nation is conformed spiritually. He is the artificer of our malleable national soul. He proposes not only the laws but the kinds of lawlessness that govern our lives and invoke our responses. The people he appoints are cast in his image. The trouble they get into and get us into, is his characteristic trouble.

Finally, the media amplify his character into our moral weather report. He becomes the face of our sky, the conditions that prevail. How can we sustain ourselves as the United States of America given the stupid and ineffective warmaking, the constitutionally insensitive lawgiving, and the monarchal economics of this president? He cannot mourn but is a figure of such moral vacancy as to make us mourn for ourselves.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Fire Rumsfeld Now! (part II)

I've been called a lot of things in my day, but I don't recall the word vitriol and my name being used in the same sentence. According to the dictionary, vitriolic means Bitterly scathing; caustic: vitriolic criticism or So sharp as to cause mental pain. I'm good with that.

Today, the Salt Lake City Tribune quoted an earlier blog entry of mine
Fire Rumsfeld Now!,in an article titled Downward roll: Defense boss has few friends left. They accused me of speaking with vitriol of the Secretary of Defense:
Rumsfeld's admirers adore such frankness, but it doesn't sit well with everyone. Among the immediate critics of Rumsfeld's comments about the recently extended soldiers was Karen Meredith, of Mountain View, Calif., whose son Kenneth Ballard was killed in Iraq in May 2004. "This arrogant, pathetic excuse of a man has once again disrespected and shown how little he regards the military that he supposedly leads," Meredith wrote in her blog, ''Gold Star Mom Speaks Out.'' "His comments demonstrate his feeling that since 'they' volunteered he can use them for anything he wants.' " Though few in Congress speak of Rumsfeld with such vitriol, the former representative from Illinois' troubles have carried onto Capitol Hill.

My friends tell me I was too restrained and too kind in my demand for Rumsfeld's termination, but this is a public place, so I contained myself. If my vitriolic words were "sharp as to cause mental pain", I won't apologize for that, especially if it was Rumsfeld's mental pain. He has no clue what real mental pain is and he will never know unless all of his children are killed in a war he doesn't support. Perhaps it was my words that caused him to portray those of us who do not support this war as suffering from "moral or intellectual confusion" about what threatens the nation's security.

As Rumsfeld spoke to the American Legion, that oh, so conservative bunch of veterans at their annual meeting in Salt Lake City, he said
the world faces "a new type of fascism" and likened critics of the U.S. war strategy to those who tried to appease the Nazis. It is disingenous to compare the fighting in Iraq with that of WWII; this is a different kind of war that requires a much different strategy.

He also had a few choice words for the media. Rumsfeld described the war on terror as "a war that is fought in the media on the global stage." He said the media creates uncertainty that could lead to failure in the war in Iraq. That's right, blame the media for a loser policy.

Rice must be playing the good guy role against Rumsfeld tough guy routine at the convention. At least she didn't play the name calling game. She said

the security of Americans is linked to successful democratic reforms throughout the Middle East. She was optimistic about the possibilities for victory in Iraq, but, unlike Rumsfeld, acknowledged the burning questions of skeptics.

"There are unsettling questions," Rice said. "Is success possible? Is [the war in Iraq] really worth the effort? Do the Iraqi people want to live in peace and freedom, or do they desire a darker path, somehow, of violence?"

She said that the moderate majority of citizens, both in Iraq and other Middle East countries, will overcome the small minority of extremists that destabilize those countries and attack the U.S. with violent acts. She said creating stable democracies was necessary to this pursuit, and pointed to the vicious Taliban-led regime in Afghanistan that gave safe harbor to Al Qaeda.

"We must seek to remove this source of terror by helping the people of that troubled region to transform those countries and transform their lives," she said.

Where do they come up with this stuff? Why do they hate the majority of Americans who do not support this occupation in Iraq?

Two days ago, the Tribune published an article preparing for Bush's visit to their fair city, Utahns: Dissent aids enemies, 45% polled say that anti-Bush rallies more harm than good. Who did they talk to? I know SLC is as red as red can be, but 45%? I'm skeptical.

I did receive quite a few visitors here, due to the mention in the SLC Tribune, including someone from the Army & someone from the Air Force. If people in the red parts of this country know how others of us think, then we have made our point. We love our troops and we love our country; but we don't love the ill-conceived policies of this government. I haven't changed my mind; Rumsfeld needs to resign. Bush can resign too, I wouldn't mind that either.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Fire Rumsfeld NOW!

If I said what I wanted to about Rumsfeld's latest patronizing comments, this page would be a blue streak across the country, it wouldn't be fit for a family audience. This arrogant, pathetic excuse of a man has once again disrepected and shown how little he regards the military that he supposedly leads. He doesn't care about them any more than Bush, Cheney or Rice do.

Rumsfeld recently visited Alaska to speak with family members of the 172nd Stryker unit whose tour in Iraq was extended just as they were preparing to come home after their one year deployment. The brigade's tour was extended by up to 120 days, bringing them close to a Christmas return date. Rumsfeld said he would make no promises that the full brigade would be back home by the holidays. "I'd love to be Santa Claus. I'm not," he told reporters. Rumsfeld is right, of course, he's not Santa Claus; he's the Grinch.

In an interview during his flight to Fairbanks, Rumsfeld said he saw no reason for the soldiers or their families to be angry at him. "“I don'’t put it in that context,"” he said. "“These people are all volunteers. They all signed up. They all are there doing what they'’re doing because they want to do it. They'’re proud of what they do. They do it very, very well."

When you call anyone "these people", it is patronizing and disrespectful. He (and his ilk) obviously feel more superior to "these people" who did volunteer to serve their country. The fact that Rumsfeld is their leader, as the Secretary of Defense, and I shudder to even write that, and that he speaks of these brave men and women in those kinds of terms is beyond contempt. His comments demonstrate his feeling that since "they" volunteered he can use them for anything he wants.

Former Secretary of State Kissingers was quoted in the book Kiss the Boys Goodbye: How the United States Betrayed Its Own POW'’s, "military men are just dumb, animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy". It seems this administration has the same respect and regard for our current military men and women and Kissinger's words still ring true today.

When people say to me that Ken was doing what he wanted, in some skewed sense of sympathy, I want to scream. Yes, he wanted to be a good soldier, he loved being a soldier and he loved being a leader. To order our military to illegally invade a sovereign country at the bidding of these cretins with their own political and fiscal agendas driven by greed is wrong no matter what you call it. To suggest that is what our soldiers wanted to do when they volunteered is insulting.

Rumsfeld says he saw no reason for the soldiers or the families in Alaska to be angry with him. Who should they be angry with? Rumsfeld has mismanaged this action in Iraq since before the war started. He has done little to mitigate the violence against the people who are in Iraq, civilians or military. From the lack of training, lack of body armor, lack of armored vehicles, lack of supplies, lack of food and lack of clean water (thank you Halliburton), this adminstration clearly shows what role they feel the soldiers have in winning their war on terror. No one in this adminstration understands what it is to be a soldier with boots on the ground in a war; few of them served. The same can be said for most members of Congress.

Fire Rumsfeld or allow him to resign NOW. I don't care, just get him out of our way. We need a Secretary of Defense who understands the sacred trust that our son's and daughters give to this country when they volunteer to sign up to serve. Rumsfeld is the wrong person to do this job.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Pentagon reforms casualty alerts

In a remarkable and welcome announcement, the Pentagon says that they are reviewing the death reports out of Iraq and Afghanistan. Secretary of the Army, Francis Harvey ordered the Army to begin doing a unit-level investigation on every soldier's death. That was good news for those of us Gold Star Families who had doubt about the circumstances of the deaths of our loved ones.

I had accepted what the Army told me in May 2004; that Ken was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head from enemy fire, small arms fire. Yes, Ken was dead and the circumstances of his death weren't the awful part, it was that Ken was never coming home. I had waited and worried and cried for 384 days while he was in Iraq. And all of that worry, all of those tears were validated when I got that knock on the door on Memorial Day 2004.

One year ago, in September 2005, the Army came to my house in California in a surprise visit. Ken had been killed 15 months prior. I had no idea what the visit was for, there were no suspicions surrounding anything that happened that night in May. I did have questions about the specifics of the battle, but I didn't expect to hear anything surprising. Within 5 minutes of meeting me, the head of Army Casualty told me that Ken was not killed the way I had been told. He told me that Ken was killed by the accidental discharge of the M240 machine gun on his tank.
My world fell apart again and my heart was ripped open. ALL of the healing I had done had been erased. I was desperate to try and find some truth to anything I had been told in the past year. But the sun sets at night and it rises again in the morning and I would eventually get back on the path of healing. I will always be left with questions of why I was not told the truth during those first few days. Everyone in his platoon and battalion knew the truth. Honestly, I never asked any of them what happened that night. Ken was dead and nothing would change that. His unit was still in Iraq and I didn't want them to relive the horror of that night anymore than they already did. The stories would come out eventually, in a year or in 20 years.

I still hear from people who knew Ken, many of them are apologetic for not writing sooner, but that is not a concern of mine. They will contact me when they can and when they are ready.

Last September when I was told the truth, only one other case of delayed truth was known. The Tillman family from San Jose, CA was also not told the truth about Pat's circumstances; they were told the official "true" story 5 weeks after Pat was killed. To this day, they are waiting to hear the whole truth. Most recently this past June, the McCaffrey family of Tracy, CA was told the truth of their Patrick's death 2 years after he was killed. Nadia, Mary & I know that there are more untold stories of the truth than ours; that there are more families that have no clue their lives are ready to re-explode and now the Pentagon has admitted that we were right.

There is some validation that we strong woman who have been so vocal about knowing the truth have paved the way for other families. It is easier to change a policy than a culture and it will be difficult for the military. Let's hope these investigations will result in ALL families knowing the truth from the beginning. For now, we remain skeptical. Pat, Patrick and Ken would be proud of their moms.

The Army connected the dots with our stories and knew that they had failed Army families. As I told the Secretary of the Army when I met with him last September; the Army can do better. I hope they will.

The NBC Nightly News did a nice story with me about this last night. You can watch the clip here. A local Bay Area Station, KTVU also did a good job in reporting the story

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Good Question

Iraq war is "straining the psyche of our country"

Ya think? The Iraq war/occupation is straining a lot more than the psyche of this country. It's definitely straining our budget and it's breaking a lot of hearts.

Bush sounded more frazzled and anxious in his press conference today than he usually does. I think he didn't have a script and he was depending on his feeble mind to get him through the hour trying to sound all presidential. Using his own mind didn't work today and it hasn't worked in a long time, if it ever did. He just wasn't sounding very presidential today.

It's the same old thing, can'tleave/won't leave Iraq before the mission is complete, blah, blah, job is done, blah, blah, blah, we're not leaving, I'm the president, blah, blah, blah Same old stuff. He did add a new reason to stay the course,
if "we leave before the mission is done, the terrorists will follow us here." A failed Iraq would provide a safe haven for terrorists and extremists and give them revenue from oil sales" I'm pretty sure he isn't saying if we bring the troops home now, the terrorists will come to Mountain View, CA and they'll make money on oil sales, or get cheaper gas prices at the pump- I'm not sure.

Bush talked about the conditions in Lebanon and about authorizing 15,000 UN soldiers to be brought into the area, but that effort is already faltering. Italy promised to send 2000-3000 troops,
in marked contrast to France which having been behind the diplomatic negotiations to work out a UN ceasefire resolution had also been expected to provide the bulk of the troops - instead it had said it will provide only 200 troops.France is stalling over chain of command concerns. The US is sending $230 million in humanitarian aid.

It got ugly when he started talking about Iraq again. Bush said:

You know, it's an interesting debate we're having in America about how we ought to handle Iraq. There's a lot of people _- good, decent people _- saying: Withdraw now.

They're absolutely wrong. It'd be a huge mistake for this country.

If you think problems are tough now, imagine what it would be like if the United States leaves before this government has a chance to defend herself, govern herself and listen to the _- and answer to the will of the people.

No, George, YOU are absolutely wrong! Bring the troops home, bring them home NOW! The will of the Iraqi people is for the US to pull the troops now (The top US Commander in Iraq, General Peter Pace admitted Sunday that Iraqis wanted US and other foreign troops to leave the country "as soon as possible,")

Back to Hezbollah...the venerable Helen Thomas asked Bush, why he always gave Israel a pass . He responded "This never would have occurred had a terrorist organization -- a state within a state -- not launched attacks on a sovereign nation." But, but, but...oh yeah, we launched attacks within a sovereign nation....sheesh! Bush also said They make decisions on their own sovereignty. yeah...the Coalition Provisional Authority made those decisions, not the US, so everything must be okay in Iraq, right? (don't worry if you're having trouble keeping up, there's a scorecard around here somewhere.)

When asked if he was frustrated, Bush replied:

Frustrated? Sometimes I'm frustrated. Rarely surprised. Sometimes I'm happy, you know. But war is not a time of joy.

These aren't joyous times. These are challenging times, and they're difficult times, and they're straining the psyche of our country. I understand that. You know, nobody likes to see innocent people die. Nobody wants to turn on their TV on a daily basis and see havoc wrought by terrorists.

I can assure you, war is not a time of joy; ask any Gold Star family. He doesn't get a vote. And "nobody likes to see innocent people die"? I guess that's why this administration doesn't allow photos of flag covered coffins returning to their final resting place.

Bush did a little doublespeak about Katrina, putting the blame on the lack of progress in clearing the debris on the state, and he talked about gas prices. He thinks that the economy is strong Look at what the economy has done. It's strong. And he's still saying the main reason we went into Iraq, at the time, was we thought he had weapons of mass destruction. It turns out he didn't, but he had the capacity to make weapons of mass destruction. (noooo, he did not say that, did he?). And surprisingly,he did admit that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. When asked, what did Iraq have to do with 9/11 he said:

Nothing, except for it's part of -- and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a -- the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. I have suggested, however, that resentment and the lack of hope create the breeding grounds for terrorists who are willing to use suiciders to kill to achieve an objective. I have made that case.

All around, many important subjects were covered. But the president needs to understand you can't have it both ways. If Hezbollah cannot attack a sovereign country, then neither can the US. If it is important that the Lebanese make decisions on their own sovereignty, wouldn't that also apply to Iraq? AND please George, please stop lying about WMD. It was a lie in the run up to the war, it was a lie when you were hunting for WMD in your video presented to the Press club and it is a lie now. There were not WMD in Iraq.

My brain is straining and it hurts!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Timely Bumper Stickers

Today, I turn my little soapbox over to something I found on the internet

The following actual bumper stickers are now on cars. I didn't write any of them. I'm only the messenger. If they make you laugh, good. If they make you cry, good.









GOD BLESS EVERYONE (No exceptions)









IS IT 2008 YET?


















1999 - $19 BARREL
2006 - $70 BARREL


Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Playing the fear card

When I started speaking out against this administration and this war, I didn't know what I would face. I knew I had already had the worst day of my life, so how bad could it be? Nothing has been as bad as May 31, 2004, the day I was notified my only child, Lt Ken Ballard, was killed in the Iraq war turned occupation.

I've been called un-American, a traitor, a freak, disrespectful of my son and other such insults. I was told my son was "Doing his job" and "Everyone Dies!" while I spoke. Not only is it mean, it is wrong. Apparently those folks never heard the wise words of Abe Lincoln,
Tis better to be silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. Or they didn't listen to their mother when she told them, if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.

Respect seems to be one of those attitudes that is dying in this country. When someone has lost a child, there is no need to be mean. Anyone who thinks that is okay is a bully; we already know they are mean, junior high mean! Whether you agree or disagree with their politics, a good response when a Gold Star family member is talking would be "I'm sorry"

The day after Ned Lamont won the election in Ct, the first thing I heard on the radio was that the Democratic party is the antiwar party and are unAmerican. what? A fair and reasonable properly held democratic election in the United States of America turns ALL members of the Democratic party into people who are unAmerican? I don't think so and while I'm pretty sure that ALL Democrats are not anti war, it's nice to hear a Democratic voice question the war. It's about time, guys, and welcome to my world!

I thought that would be it, but of course, it only got worse. The VP of this land, Dick Cheney, said that the Lamont victory
might encourage "the al-Qaeda types" who want to "break the will of the American people in terms of our ability to stay in the fight and complete the task."And Tony Snow, the president's press secretary said a vote for Lamont was a vote for another 9/11. Snow said that Connecticut voters who backed Ned Lamont (and the 57 percent of Americans who support his position on Iraq) were choosing to "ignore the difficulties and walk away." That is the same approach, he said, that led Osama bin Laden to the conclusion “that Americans were weak and wouldn'’t stay the course and that led to September 11th."” And because of 9/11, then we had to go to war in Iraq? oh geez!

I've got "fear fatigue" and the more this administration plays that card, the more I see it as the little boy crying "Wolf". If we ever really need to believe them, what are the chances that we will?

What did this country do to deserve these people?

Saturday, August 12, 2006

I wonder

Today we marked the very sad passing of the 2600th US member of the military. It is likely the media will not comment on this number. All Gold Star families mourn the loss of any soldier.

The occupation of Iraq has been put on the back burner while we try to figure out what the hell is going on in Israel and Lebanon and what we can and cannot carry on an airplane.

I've been no particular order....

I wonder if members of the Bush administration ever wring their hands and ponder what they have done?

I wonder if they ever watch the news and see, really see, the faces of our children, our loved ones who are dying in this war.

I wonder if they know, at a moments notice on any given day, the US casualty count in Iraq. (it's 2601 as of today)

I wonder if any of them know
a name, any name of a US soldier who has died as a result of their failed policies.

I wonder if they know
a name, any name of an Iraqi civilian who has died as a result of their failed polities, not they even know the number of those casualties.

I wonder if they ever wake up in the middle of the night; are not able to breathe thinking about their loved one. They'll wake up with their loved one safe and sound, but we never will.

I wonder if they look in the mirror and say "I am the meanest son of a bitch in the land.....and I like it!"

I wonder if they know how hot 135 degrees is. Not just for one day inside the Green Zone in Baghdad, but for months at a time.

I wonder if they have any guilt for lying about the reasons to illegally invade a sovereign country.

I wonder if any of them has a doubt about staying the course. Do they ever even think about it?

I wonder if the executives of Halliburton, KBR and the other war profiteers cheer at their company picnics for the obscene profits they are making off of our children. For that matter, I guess we are paying for that picnic anyway.

I wonder if they feel guilty for losing $9 billion dollars of reconstruction money.

I wonder if they honestly believe that the war in Iraq can be won.

I wonder if these people have lied all their lives or is it a skill they gained later in life.

I wonder if they can imagine standing on a tarmac at the airport waiting for your son's body to be removed in a flag covered casket.

I wonder if they know what it is like to lay in bed at night practicing what you would say if you got that knock on the door.

I wonder how many of them have attended a military funeral for a casualty from this war.

I wonder how many have visited Section 60 at Arlington National Cemetery to see the damage they have done.

I wonder if Rumsfeld ever did sign the condolence letters to families.

I wonder if they ever think that the American public would have backed this war/occupation if they had told us the truth in the beginning.

I wonder when Peace became a bad word.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Connecticut has Spoken

I thank you.

Shock loss shows US anti-war mood

Monday, August 07, 2006

Smackdown in Ct

I love a good election. I kind of wish I was in Connecticut on Tuesday. Lamont vs Lieberman. After months of campaigning, this smackdown starts at 8 a.m. when the polls open. I hope it's a KO on Lieberman. I don't understand how he can call himself a Democrat when he has been cuddling up to his friend, George Bush in the White House. His stance on Iraq, "I still believe that [the decision to invade Iraq] was right" along with his continued, cozy support of the administration will hopefully bring his legislative career to an end. In last minute campaign stops, Lieberman said he has opposed nearly every major domestic issue Bush has backed, including a ban on stem cell research and a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. I'll concede those are important issues, but he wins no brownie points with me.

If Lieberman loses; the message will be loud and clear. The message is Iraq. It is not about getting re-elected, because if it isn't about Iraq, you shouldn't be re-elected. The invasion of Iraq was wrong, is wrong and will forever be wrong. Historians will not view this administration favorably and if you are tied to this administration with your support of the war, blood is on your hands, too.

Don't think the Grand Old Party isn't quaking in their boots, either. If Lamont is victorious, they better be examining their election strategies, too.

While most agree that the eventual Democratic winner will be supported by those currently supporting Lieberman, like the Clinton's and former Senator Max Cleland, it is in the best interest of those in his camp to see him win.
A Lamont victory would shift the party to the left and give further encouragement to activists already deeply disappointed with Mrs Clinton's hawkish approach to foreign policy.

The polls may say the numbers give the win to Lamont, but the biggest threat to a Lamont win is getting those voters to the polls. If the Lamont campaign has a good campaign manager and I suspect he does, the phones are ringing all over Connecticut and that will continue until the polls close on Tuesday evening.

It's time for the legislators on both sides of the aisle to remember that we voted them in; we can vote them out.

It's time for the voters of Connecticut to send the message loud and clear. I can only hope that the voters across the country do the same.