Something in common 

Something in common

Like his benefactor, Maurice Clemmons saw a lot of bad in other people. In applying to Gov. Mike Huckabee for clemency, Clemmons said that his numerous crimes occurred because he'd moved from Seattle to an Arkansas neighborhood that was “crime-infested,” that “negative peer pressure was heavily placed upon me.” Most people would have dismissed such a petition out of hand. Huckabee granted clemency; four police officers are dead. And this wasn't even the first time that a recipient of Huckabee mercy went on a murderous rampage after being released. Unable to acknowledge his mistakes, Huckabee never learns from them. Forced to comment on the Clemmons matter, Huckabee once again found fault not in himself but in “a series of failures in the criminal justice system in both Arkansas and Washington state.” No, it was not the system as a whole that was to blame. The prosecuting attorney did his job, and the jurors did theirs. Clemmons had almost 100 years of prison time still to serve when Huckabee and the state Parole Board — also notoriously prone to err — were moved by his tale of negative peer pressure, and set him free. Huckabee is finished as a presidential candidate now. He'll blame it on “a series of failures in the American political system.”    


Republican poodle

Having helped elect a terrible Republican president in 2000, Ralph Nader now threatens to help elect a terrible Republican senator. That is a lot of harm for one man to do to his country. Friends hope the 75-year-old Nader suffers from senile dementia. If not, if the former reformer is in his right mind, you'd almost have to conclude that he's on the take. In 2000, Nader siphoned enough votes away from Al Gore to let George Bush in the White House. Eight years of lies, war and economic ruin ensued. The latest word is that Nader is considering a race next year against Sen. Chris Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat. Nader could never be elected, but conceivably he could hurt Dodd as he did Gore, enabling the Republicans to elect another right-wing rogue, that being the only sort of person who can win a Republican nomination these days. Nader says he's “absorbing a lot of the feedback before I make a decision,” but we know that he's not very absorbent. Friends and allies asked him not to run for president in 2000, fearing the very thing that came to pass. Even more pled with him in 2004 and 2008. He ran all three times, and Republicans contributed openly to his campaigns. What they may have done privately is the subject of much conjecture.



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