The Senators & Comacho
After all, enjoying a cigar while driving might cause a bit of smoke to emanate skyward and cause global warming to melt the ice-caps and consequently waste the polar bears and cause Manhattan to become part surf and part beach, but driving while enjoying a good beer or a half-pint of rum could only cause someone to get killed, nothing serious. The choice was easy and the senators showed their superior intelligence in exerting their influence. By the way, the choice was also easy because none of this applied to their states.
This is no brief for tobacco, a harmful substance but certainly not more harmful than alcoholic beverages in any form. Indeed, where using tobacco may be harmful to an individual, it isn’t likely to cause harm to anyone else. Contrarily, the user of alcohol, besides also hurting himself just as in the case of tobacco, risks not only the possibility of hurting others but in thousands of cases every year causes death and destruction to others, making the probability quite substantive. Compared to the cigar-smoker, the imbiber of alcohol is a devil.
Apparently, the good senators felt that the cigar-flashing would deliver the wrong message to young people, as if the young people are not already more knowledgeable about both tobacco and alcohol (and all other drugs, of which tobacco is not one) than the senators. If that was their position, they were sending the message that tobacco is bad but drinking is okay; otherwise, they would have denounced all the forms of danger. To do that and be honest, they would have had to renounce both their drinking habits (if applicable) and the liquor lobby, the latter too great a sugar-daddy to politicians to upset.
The extreme irony, of course has to do with do-gooder Senator Dick Durbin, democrat of Illinois. This advocate for the youth is most famous for his comparing of American GIs (a segment of youth of which he has no understanding) in Iraq to Stalin’s murderous keepers of the Soviet Gulags, the equally murderous Storm Troopers of the butcher Adolph Hitler, who directed the dispatching of 11 million in the 1930s-40s, and Pol Pot’s murderers of millions in the “killing fields” of Cambodia – all recent history.
But that’s not all that establishes Durbin as a paragon of virtue with respect at least to the law and conscience. This is from the Chicago Tribune of 30 December 2008: "U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D- Nevada) said in a statement this afternoon the Senate will not seat anyone Gov. Rod Blagojevich chooses to fill Illinois' vacant Senate post, amid word that the governor is set to name former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris. The statement also is signed by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, who has repeatedly urged Blagojevich not to name a replacement for the seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama. The statement specifically names Burris, but applies to any choice the governor might make."
This is from Reuters of 30 December 2008: "KAILUA, Hawaii (Reuters) - U.S. President-elect Barack Obama said on Tuesday he agreed that Senate Democrats 'cannot accept' any move by Illinois' scandal-tarred governor to name a replacement for Obama's Senate seat." Get the picture? Durbin joined Reid and Obama in purposefully attempting to violate the U. S. Constitution with respect to the requirements for filling a vacated Senate seat. They committed treacherous acts although they were not successful. Burris was seated and served out the term vacated by Obama. All three – Durbin, Reid, Obama – at this point were tinhorn crooks playing one of the lowest games of politics – ganging up on the perceived vulnerable.
All of this is part and parcel of why citizens hold politicians in such low esteem, including Obama, who stays below the 50% mark in approval ratings, though much of that is due to his blatant incompetence and his proclivity for using the executive to browbeat the Congresspersons and anyone else he deems worthy of his disdain. Disgusting!
Equally disgusting is the subject at hand. Three senators, either so blind to reality or so opportunistic that they can’t see beyond the bridges of their respective noses, disparage the least harmful of two substances in the name of protecting the youth while consequently approving the most harmful. So…does the above apply…or are they just dumb as gourds?
And so it goes.