Friday, December 19, 2008


I like goin' to fights
I like earnin' my stripes
--Ice Cube
Caroline Kennedy is making a run at the NY state senate seat being vacated by HRC. The debate is whether or not she should even be considered, since her resume is thinner than Kate Moss.

The first line of argument is that because she is inexperienced she is somehow the Democratic version of Sarah Palin.

The problem with Palin wasn't just that she had taken the governorship with little experience - the real issue was that Palin didn't have a brain, and did not see any need to fill the space between her ears with anything other than quotes on LV handbags for her pre-teen children.

Caroline (by comparison) is not dumb. She is a lawyer and has written some books. She is also not running for VP, she is running for Senate. I'm sure that there are a few senators with far less brainpower than the Thrilla from Wasilla running around the Capitol. But, this does not exactly mean that Caroline should parachute in to the NY senate seat without something other than "Served on NPO board of directors" on the resume.

If her name was anything other than Kennedy, she would have stiff competition, and in all honesty would not be considered.

Review the experience of Patrick Kennedy in '88:
To understand [Caroline's] interest in this office, one must go back to a November day in 1988 when her brother John Jr. was standing at a polling place in Providence, Rhode Island having his picture taken with voters and signing the Polaroid prints. His twenty-year-old cousin Patrick was running for the Rhode Island legislature against incumbent Jack Skeffington, a man who had served his constituents long and well. But the Kennedys had descended on the district with their money and celebrity, and Skeffington was a marked man.


Patrick won overwhelmingly that day but the biggest loser was Patrick. He was a shy, insecure young man with no credentials except his name. If he first had had some semblance of a career outside politics, he might have made a different kind of public servant.
The reason that she is even being considered, and can have lunch in Harlem with Al Sharpton and anyone else she likes is because over 40 years ago her dad was a superstar President that has been lionized.

It's not because of her ability to discuss issues:
“I just hope everybody understands that it is not a campaign but that I have a lifelong devotion to public service,” Ms. Kennedy said as she left the office of the Monroe County Democratic Committee in Rochester. “I’ve written books on the Constitution and the importance of individual participation. And I’ve raised my family. I think I really could help bring change to Washington.”
And that's all she said in Rochester - she's written books on the "importance of individual participation" and "raised a family".

She is a smart underachiever with a name and the right DNA.

Those pushing for her to achieve office are either:
a) Cynical, as they realize that she is a political lightweight, but also that she could easily win and would be a huge fundraising draw for boomers enamored with Camelot, or they are

b) Boomers enamored with Camelot.
It reeks of entitlement. She has never held elected office, and doesn't give a rat's ass about voting:
City Board of Elections records show Kennedy has failed to vote in many elections since she registered in the city in 1988 - including votes for the Senate seat she hopes to fill and numerous Democratic faceoffs for mayor.


Records show Kennedy did not pull the lever for any of her fellow Democrats in city primary races for mayor in 1989, 1993 and 1997 and 2005, which Republicans went on to win three out of four times in the general election.
I guess the whole "importance of individual participation" thing is for the non-Kennedy types.

This is the result of dynasties that are self-perpetuating, like the "Legacy" system at the Ivy League schools, the hoarding of education dollars within rich neighbourhoods, and the use of a surname to simply carry an office.

"Name recognition" is just another coded political phrase for "nepotism".

NY state is filled with talented and accomplished women, and Caroline has not stood out in any way to merit this reward of a senate seat.

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