Sunday, October 26, 2008

Joe the Punter

At the beginning of the third season of Battlestar Galactica, most of what remains of the human population has been forced into an uneasy communal relationship with the Cylons after their surprise invasion of New Caprica. "Communal relationship," however, is a gross euphemism, as the reality is that the humans are little more than slaves to their Cylon overlords: they're under vigilant watch and forced to live in constant fear; they're subtly and sometimes not-so-subtly threatened with overwhelming force should they conspire against the military state; they're tortured in prison camps if they get out of line.

During this period of subjugation, a few humans -- either through rank opportunism or simply a resignation to the inevitability of the situation -- choose to cooperate with the Cylons and the puppet government they've created. They serve in office, join the secret police which is tasked with hunting down and "dealing with" insurgents among the population, and work in administrative positions.*

After the humans are freed in a daring rescue and are finally back with the fleet, those who collaborated with the Cylons on New Caprica are systematically hunted down by a secret tribunal, "tried" and, if convicted, executed. This sentence is carried out by putting them into a launch tube and firing them out of the air lock into space.**

Why do I bring this up?

Because Joe Lieberman is now talking to anyone who will listen about how much "respect" he's always had for Barack Obama.

No doubt sensing which way the political winds are blowing and hoping not to be rendered utterly irrelevant by them, the one-time Democratic vice presidential candidate turned full-time GOP attack dog seems to be trying to hedge his bet in the final days before America goes to the polls. For months Lieberman has played John McCain's sycophantic Renfield and led the charge against Barack Obama, accusing the Democrat of not putting "country first" and insinuating that he may be a Marxist. But now that the McCain campaign looks to be headed for an embarrassing defeat, Lieberman -- feckless little weasel that he is -- may be looking for a way back into the fold that he so categorically turned away from. It's one thing to think independently and put conscience above party; not only is this generally the correct way to behave -- it's the only way for anyone who considers him or herself to be intellectually honest. Lieberman didn't do that though -- not by a long shot. He used his position as someone who was nominally an insider within one political party to work toward the goals of another, basically taking on the role of double-agent. And what's worse, despite his claim of "respect" for Barack Obama, he helped mastermind a series of vicious attacks on the man he now fears may wind up being president and worked as hard as just about anyone to ensure his defeat.

So, what should become of Lieberman on November 5th if Obama wins the presidency?

Three words: Suck space, Joe.***

*I realize that the profiteering confederate is pretty much an archetype by this point and that a stronger analogy would've been, say, those very real people who cooperated with despotic regimes during wartime, but I'm all about pop culture and happen to like Battlestar Galactica, so deal with it.

**I'll overlook the fact that, in the context of the show, the secret tribunal is supposed to be a nefarious entity -- a vigilante group which does more harm than good -- and that Gaius Baltar is eventually acquitted of collaborating with the Cylons. I can do this because it's my blog -- so once again, deal with it.

***No, of course I'm not suggesting that Joe Lieberman be shot into space. It's a metaphor. For sending him somewhere he'll never be heard from again. Like space.


A Bowl Of Stupid said...

You know I love ya' kid, and you HAVE been absoutely on fire for the past couple months, but c'mon Chez ... Battlestar Gallactica?

kanye said...

Joe Lieberman is Barack Obama's Senate mentor. Taught him everything he knows.

Chez said...

And yet...

Steve Saunders said...

Hey, they shot the Hulk into space and he came back. Then again, that's the Hulk, and he's both smarter and better looking than Lieberman.

And Hulk isn't even a real person.

Much like Joe Lieberman.

What? What? I kid, Mr. Lieberman!*

(*Not really)

(also, I like the BSG refs... nice)

Fifth Generation Leftist said...

I think space is the only place left for him to go. I know one of his relatives. Apparently they move away in temple when he comes in, even his kin can't stand to be near him.

Anonymous said...

Shooting people into space is really satisfying on a TV show, but alienating a powerful senator is bad strategy. Whatever political crap he's pulled he knows a lot of people and has influence. What should be done with him then? He should be told in no uncertain terms that he can return to the Democratic fold and maintain his seniority on various committees if he promises to shut up and toe the line in public. Then he should be dealt with however when re-election time comes. He's older and politically broken. He might retire. But considering how well liked he is in his home state it's crucial that the Democrat who runs for his seat get his endorsement if he does retire, because there will be a significant portion of the population who will listen to him. This is why you treat Joe Lieberman well. So he will help the Democrats get his seat in the senate after he's done with it.

The truth about Lieberman is that while he has been opportunistic he has also done some of the things he's done out of legitimate difference of opinion with the Democratic party. He is for the war, he is rabidly Pro-Israel in a Republican way, and he's conservative on a number of issues.

Lieberman won his seat as an independent during the last election. His support of McCain is not totally unexpected or some profound betrayal. The last the thing the Democrats should do when they get the reins of power is to start pursuing a bunch of vendettas and revenge, especially against someone like Lieberman who they have a lot of common ground and history with. They should focus on getting a strong consensus and pursuing a legislative agenda. There's a decent chance Lieberman may represent the crucial 60th vote for filibuster breaking. I'm not saying you ignore his transgressions, but vengeance just begets vengeance.

Remember the lessons of the treaty of Versailles vs the Marshall Plan.

Brandon said...

Though their positions in society are slightly different, Joe Lieberman looks like Emperor Palpatine before he became the Emperor. In the back of my head, I see him pulling a "I AM the Senate" should McCain win.

Anyway, Joe isn't trying to sneak back to the Dem side, we all know that he is only showing "respect" for Obama now because he's black. Just like Colin Powell. In fact that's why anyone pays attention to Obama, right? (Tongue firmly in cheek)

Anonymous said...

The political equivalent of shooting his ass into space would be bouncing him from every committee he's on. That would be a good start anyway.

idiosynchronic said...

The fine state of Connecticut sent the Senator, so he's the only one whom can really boot him. But the Democratic party can certainly remove him of just about everything worth making his life wunderbar in the Senate. Strip his ass of every committee chairmanship they can. If possible, make him the only senator of recent history to have no committee memberships. Allow him to keep a seat in the caucus, but let him know about the only worth he has to the Democratic party is keeping a seat warm and voting when they tell him to.

Chez said...

For the record, I agree 100% that the last thing the Dems should do is go on a revenge spree the minute they've locked up a good portion of the government (if in fact they do). I've just always thought Lieberman was a shithead -- regardless of his party affiliation -- and would love nothing more than to see him live out the rest of his days playing mahjong in Del Boca Vista.

Web Dunce said...

Joe Lieberman has been a huge disappointment to Connecticut not only because of his war stance - which is reprehensible - but because he doesn't even try to hide his weasel qualities. I remember vividly when Ned Lamont was running against him - and it was Barack Obama who campaigned for Lieberman, helped to raise lots of money, etc. It broke my heart to be honest, but at the time Lieberman's record was straight democrat except for the war and he had a lot of friends in the Senate. He never should have endorsed McCain. Out of "respect" for Obama he really just should have kept his mouth shut and not officially endorsed anyone. But for Lieberman to not only endorse McCain, but to speak at the Republican Convention so condescendingly toward Obama made my skin crawl. His political career in CT is over. Unfortunately, he's got a few more years in the senate before we can vote him out once and for all.

Chez said...

That was what I always found the most offensive about Lieberman: his lack of loyalty not to the Democratic party -- because, as I said, party politics need to be discounted sometimes -- but to Obama, someone who backed him so wholeheartedly during his run against Ned Lamont.

Lieberman really is just that: a spineless little weasel.

Ike said...

I'm voting for the grizzled war veteran, and the woman who is just two steps removed from the PTA.

That's right:

Adama/Roslin 2008!

I always felt that Baltar was an effete elitist. Many think he is in league with the skinjobs, and secretly is one. He claims to be from Aerelon, but won't release his birth records. And have you seen how his followers treat him like a messiah?

megbon said...

Kanye - I thought Dick Durbin was Obama's senate mentor?

Phil said...

Please avoid wiping dirty smelly pathetic real life politics all over my shiny sexy dramatically exploding Battlestar Galactica. What's wrong with you? I'm trying to watch TV over here.

Deacon Blue said...

Ike, I have to admit I wasn't able to watch pretty much any BSG after season 2, as my daughter held the TV hostage and forced me to watch Barney, Dora and Diego.

And now I've been too busy to catch up on the DVDs.

So, my all important policy question is:

Did Adama shave off that damned silly mustache?

If so, I'll vote for that ticket.

Master Mahan said...

The Democrats are going to need to strike a balance dealing with the senior rodent from Connecticut. If they welcome him back with open arms, it will look like they only care about power. If they're too harsh with the bastard, it will make them seem vindictive, and could come across as punishing Connecticut.

Fortunately, I'd say the proper balance lies more towards marginalizing Lieberman. No one likes a collaborator. Whatever remains of the right-wing after November 4th isn't going to waste much breath defending the weaselfucker.

Anonymous said...

I'm all for shooting him into space. NASA doesn't seem like its had much to do lately.

Ref said...

We (spit) need the little weasel, but he should be on notice as to his fate if he steps out of line.