The alleged wackiness of Dennis Kucinich

March 11, 2012 | By | 2 Replies More

Rep. Dennis Kucinich recently lost his race to return as a Congressional representative of Ohio.  The blame for his loss sits largely at the door of the cowardly news media, which would rather make a cartoon of Kucinich than give serious heed to his well-formulated arguments.

At Salon.com, Glenn Greenwald also laments the way the establishment media has treated Dennis Kucinich.  Greenwald argues that the media blithely painted him as wacky because of  Kucinich’s friendship with Shirley McLaine (who believes in reincarnation).  The media loves to report that (according to McLaine) Kucinich once “claimed to have an encounter with a UFO.”

For these “sins,” the establishment media advises that we are not to take any of Kucinich’s political positions seriously. Greenwald dismantles this insanity in two stages. First, he compares the alleged beliefs of Kucinich with the purported beliefs of most politicians, which the news media gives a free ride:

[Are any of Kucinich’s beliefs] any more strange than the litany of beliefs which the world’s major religions require? Is Barack Obama “wacky” because he claims to believe that Jesus turned water into wine, rose from the dead and will soon welcome him to heaven? Is Chuck Schumer bizarre because he seems to believe that there’s some big fatherly figure sitting in the sky who spewed fire and brimstone at those who broke the laws he sent down on some stones and now hovers over him judging his every move? Is Harry Reid a weirdo because he apparently venerates as divine the “visions” of a man who had dozens of wives, including some already married to other men? Neither the Prospect nor the Post would ever dare mock as “wacky” the belief in invisible judgmental father-figures in the sky or that rendition of life-after-death gospel because those belief systems have been deemed acceptable by establishment circles.

Step two of the analysis is to step back to see the political views of Kucinich that have been ridiculed by the mainstream media:

Image by Wikimedia Commons

[The American Prospect] praises as “great” a snide, derisive Washington Post piece which purports to “highlight some of the particularly bizarre facts about” Kucinich. Among those is the fact that “he introduced impeachment articles against former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Cheney for their roles in the Iraq war” and “proposed a Cabinet-level agency devoted to peace.”

How has the media treated truly horrendously irresponsible and blatantly irresponsible views of other politicians?

The current President not only has seized the power to assassinate American citizens with no charges, but also to imprison people indefinitely with no charges, to bomb six different countries where no war is declared and where civilians are routinely killed, to invoke extreme, self-parodying levels of secrecy to hide what he does, and to prosecute wars even after Congress votes against their authorization. His cabinet is filled with people who, while in public life, advocated an aggressive attack on another country on the basis of weapons that did not exist, including his Vice President and Secretary of State. His financial team is filled with the very same people who implemented the Wall-Street-subservient policies that led to the 2008 financial crisis. Despite all that, it would be unhealthy in the extreme to hold your breath waiting for the Prospect or the Post to mock any of them as crazy or “wacky,” because what they advocate — as crazy as it is — fits comfortably within the approved orthodoxies of establishment Washington.

Take a look at Greenwald’s excellent article for other unacceptable policy positions Kucinich has taken, including his general outlook that “both political parties often embraced extremist, destructive policies due to a combination of cowardice and malignant views.”   Or take a look at the many article at this website that discuss the thoughtful and courageous positions Kucinich has taken.  And then sit back and feel the full import of what it means to have lost one of those rare politicians who intelligently spoke his conscience in a political world dominated by bi-polar group think.

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Category: Corporatocracy, Heroes, Journalism, Media, Orwellian, Religion, United States foreign policy

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (2)

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  1. Niklaus Pfirsig says:

    I recall that Kucinich, as mayor of Cleveland, proposed a change to the contract bidding process. He proposed, that rather than taking the lowest bid, all the bids should be averaged and the contractor bidding closest to the average should be awarded the contract.
    The rationale behind this idea was that had problems with huge cost overruns with low bid contractors, and the high bidders were obviously too high.

  2. Adam Herman says:

    Well, Kucinich does have some wacky views. The fact that his religion is different isn’t what makes him wacky. Daily Kos actually had a great takedown of Kucinich a few years back, although that could have been motivated by the fact that Kos is a Democratic Party mouthpiece first, a liberal activist second, whereas Kucinich was a liberal first, a Democrat second.

    But his idea of a Department of Peace is a pure waste of time. We already have that, it’s called the Department of State. Everything Kucinich described about his proposed Dept. of Peace is already done by State except that the Peace Dept would never support armed intervention anywhere. But neither would a Dept of State under a Kucinich administration, so what’s the point? It would be like a President Ron Paul setting up a Department of Isolation, or a Department of the Gold Standard. State would fulfill the first role, Treasury the second if he was president.

    He also supported something called “non-profit” health care. He never made it clear whether he meant just the insurance companies. He seemed to hint that drug companies should be non-profit as well. Or perhaps even doctors, who knows?

    But probably the most ridiculous thing about him was that he fancied himself a leader. He failed miserably in his one executive position and he’s spent his life as purely an activist, and not a very good one. Markos Moulitsa probably hates him because he gives activists a bad name. He was so much of a pure activist as opposed to a statesman that he was willing to just move to another state just so he could stay in Congress. Would he have represented a district in Washington, or would he have represented himself and his causes?

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