Monday, August 24, 2009

Lieberman for Lieberman

It's no shock that Sen. Joe Lieberman would recommend an incremental approach toward health care reform rather than passing substantial reform this year. This is what Lieberman's been doing for several years now -- hanging out with Democrats, figuring out what's important to them, and then going on TV to say why it's bad. But the way he made his current argument shows that absolutely nothing is sacred to the man:
Great changes in our country often have come in steps. The Civil Rights movement occurred, changes occurred in steps.
Dave Noon hits the right marks here. But let me just add that, as Lieberman is fond of pointing out, he marched with Dr. King during the Civil Rights Movement. The movement is part of his own political history. As Lieberman should well know, the argument that the Civil Rights Movement should proceed incrementally was one of the arguments advanced by its critics. Thurgood Marshall dispensed with that argument during the Little Rock desegregation crisis in 1957:
The Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863, ninety-odd years ago. I believe in gradualism. I also believe that ninety-odd years is pretty gradual.
For Lieberman to be praising gradualism during the struggle for civil rights as an example that should be followed today is frankly shameful.

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