Friday, August 08, 2008

Cohen's Big Win, Bigger for Memphis

The spirits were high at the Steve Cohen victory party tonight and the numbers were so astounding, the huge crowd of supporters seemed almost giddy. After all, these are people unaccustomed to political victory celebrations, but when Cohen's winning margin reached 80%, even those seasoned by years of disappointment had to marvel at this achievement. The majority African-American District 9 had rejected racial and divisive politics and voted in overwhelming numbers to re-elect Cohen, amidst the nastiest campaign by a congressional candidate since the race baiting days of the Fifties. Only the race baiting, and Jew-baiting, were put forth this time by the minority candidate, who's entire campaign could be summed up by the slogan, "Vote for me. I'm black,"

Cohen couldn't have scripted a better closing week to his campaign. First, every news camera in the city recorded him bodily ejecting the Armenian Stalker from his home, an incident so bizarre that a knowledge of the Ottoman Turks is necessary to understand what it was about. And then it was revealed that the Armenians were contributors to the Tinker campaign. But whoever dreamed up the two repugnant Tinker attack ads that were so inflammatory they drew national media condemnation, ought to be taken out and shot, just like Walter Bailey's credibility. The "Prayer" ad caused Keith Olbermann to declare Tinker his nightly "Worst Person in the World," (video above, click on title), and on the eve of the election, Tinker's tactics were publicly repudiated, not just by Barack Obama and her benefactors, Emily's List, but by her former mentor, Harold Ford, Jr. It was fitting that her election night reception should be in a place called "Ground Zero." That describes her political career after tonight.

Cohen's huge margin of victory should be examined carefully in future races because it sounds the death knell of dynastic politics in Memphis and proves that the old racial politics, whether practiced by a black or white candidate, will no longer be rewarded. It's greatly encouraging to see a district dominated by the Ford family for 30 years, decide that they are best represented by the middle-aged, bespectacled, Jewish guy who had proven his mettle in his Freshman term and deserved another. If Nikki Tinker is genuinely interested in public service, and not just a short-cut to Washington, she should run for Ophelia Ford's seat in the Tennessee Legislature and serve for a quarter century, like Cohen. Then she might have the foundation to run for national office, instead of the bile, gibberish, and venom she had to offer this time. Meanwhile, I'd keep my day job, if Pinnacle Airlines would still have me after that classless performance.

Great credit should go to Cohen's staff, in D.C. and in Memphis, for operating an efficient Congressional office and a near flawless campaign. This victory must be particularly sweet for them. But the lion's share of the credit should go to the candidate himself. The House's passage of Cohen's bill offering an apology for slavery may be meaningless to some and purely symbolic to many, but it is an issue that has been festering for a long time, and it took Cohen to accomplish it. His voting record, as well as his initiatives, show that he will fight for his beliefs, even when unpopular, and he has become that rarest of politicians; a conscientious and incorruptible public servant whose first duty is to his constituents. What a novelty in this age. I'm feeling a little like Michelle Obama tonight, and if I could paraphrase her; I'm proud of my city for the first time in a very long time. Well done Memphis and Congressman Cohen, and keep on keeping on.

23 comments:

John said...

Absolutely amazing that in a city that is 60% black a Jewish boy (59) could take 80% of the vote to keep his seat in Congress when his young black opponent whose sleazy ads backfired, even though she was backed by big money, came out with less than 20%.
The glory days of Memphis may rise again, and rise to heights never before reached.

Steve should be very proud of himself, of the way he conducted his campaign, and his record in his first term in Congress. I am sure he is grateful for the strong support he had from Lynne and Henry Turley and others who worked like crazy to make it happen.

I wonder where Walter Bailey, D'Army Bailey, Nikki, and her Pinnacle pals are hiding today!!

JOB WELL DONE, STEVE COHEN!! I am proud of you.

John Simmons

Anonymous said...

I'm so very proud of Steve and his whole staff.I was in the room last night when Steve walked in with a sure victory and I swear, you would have thought Barak himself had walked in.The excitement in the air was thrilling.And who better then to give the kind words and witty comentary but our own Randy with his blog. All of Steves group of friends know who I'm talking about.We were all there to share in a dream that can come true,Unity in Memphis---- could happen.Way to go Steve.

Anonymous said...

go steve!
go tigers!
go mempho!

b

ghg said...

Contratulations to Steve and to the people of TN-9. I was kept abreast of some of what was going on down there via MAL,Jr., and through the Huffpost. I think it speaks to what we're going to see in November. I think this whole country started to wake up just before the 2006 mid terms.

I've begun to see this period of time as a redux of the colonies in the mid 1770s. The mid term elections were like the Boston Tea Party. And I now believe that I've heard those first shots at Concord and Lexington. In November, we'll be able to see the Tory's (read: the landed gentry, the multi-nationals, the religious right, those idealogues that would stand in the way of things like universal health care, the folks like the large Virginia tobacco owners who Patrick Henry put in their place) start to run looking for boats back to Britain. The people are rising again. Integrity means something again.

I'm sick of seeing hard working people with 4 children who make 45k between them come into my ER with no medical insurance and facing a $600 bill because they waited at home hoping that they'd get better and now are so sick that they need expensive medicine and care. It's bullshit. It's about time that the governed spoke about what they wanted for themselves instead of being told by the Mr. Sir who owns the plantation what they want and what he's going to give them.

Adios, Rush and Fox and rapists of conscience. Hello, Obama and the audacity of hope. Can't wait to see who sits in his cabinet. It's time for a proud people to be proud again.

Anonymous said...

Tinker is a low-life, a joke, and a disgrace to her race. She seems more like a gang-banger than a serious candidate for political office. I'm kind of surprised that she lost though, because blacks tend to vote for such people. Maybe things are changing for the better in the hood. And Cohen may be the rare statesman and not a politician. Randy, maybe you should run for office. Maybe Cohen can help you get your foot in the door.

Anonymous said...

Cohen's landslide victory may indicate a change for the better amongst black voters. Heretofore, they seem to have had a penchant for electing criminals, and other bad character types who reflect their culture. Maybe there is some hope for them to start electing folks with a little bit of character and who do something more than promise them handouts. Generally speaking, black poliical philosophy can be simply stated as,'Willie wants your wallet'. Willie doesn't want to go to school with whites, and he doesn't want to live around whites. Willie just wants your wallet and that is all there is to black politics. And you can bet that catering to Willie will be a big part of Obama's agenda if elected.

Anonymous said...

Cohen is a racist and a bigot. He should be impeached and put on trial for assault.
He had no right putting his hands on a man from the press. It doesnt matter where the press was from or what kinds of questions it was asking. THE LAST TIME I CHECKED THIS IS AMERICA AND FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND PRESS ARE IN THE FIRST AMENDMENT.

davethedog said...

Yeah, and the LAST TIME I CHECKED, the "Press" couldn't barge into someone's private home. So don't be surprised if Cohen hands out what we used to call "Armenian Ass-Whippings". Cohen is like Uncle Ben, he is a credit to his "rice". Rock on Dude!

-mt- said...

Heretofore, they seem to have had a penchant for electing criminals, and other bad character types who reflect their culture. Maybe there is some hope for them to start electing folks with a little bit of character and who do something more than promise them handouts. Generally speaking, black poliical philosophy can be simply stated as,'Willie wants your wallet'.

=============================

In response to the unmitigated CRAP written by "anonymous", (you'll know which one), I have but one thing to say: Who is this fool?!!
Don't you get a little weary of spouting all those tired, well-worn, racist stereotypes that are so passe in the 21st century? It's you and people of your ilk that are the primary reasons for the continued contention between Black and white citizens of this city and the country.

Speaking of criminals, How's your relationship with Mssrs. Chucklehead and Cheney? and Rove, et al. Your "criminal' reference seem a bit ludicrous and purposely blind given the magnitude of the criminal acts that have been taking place in the White House.

Get a life, stupid!! Even if you cringe to have to acknowledge it, criminals, the really BIG criminals, almost always come in shades of white.

PS. Congrats, Steve. You deserve this victory.

Anonymous said...

...'really big criminals usually come in the shades of white'. And you say that anonymous is a fool. How about the fact that nearly all American urban centers are unsafe to be in after nightfall. And this isn't due to Bush or Cheney. It's due to the fact that 'Willie wants your wallet'. He also wants the nookie of your wife and daughters. Over 90% of the violent crime is caused by blacks who make up 13% of this country's population. Talk about not facing facts. But then liberals have no use for facts. They just get in the way of their ineffectual programs. Forty-five years and trillions of dollars of rat-holed money is proof of that. Look where it has gotten us. A country whose streets are not safe to walk in and whose public schools are sorry, unsafe jokes . Compare America of '65 with America of '08. No more needs to be said.

Father Farken said...

CONGRATULATIONS TO MEMPHIS! THIS IS GREAT NEWS! I AM IN-BETWEEN A WEDDING AND A RECEPTION IN PITTSBURGH! JUST GOT THE NEWS! I AM LISTENING TO STEVE'S COUSIN LEONARD SINGING "I'M YOUR MAN!" BUT IT'S STEVE! STEVE IS OUR MAN! SPUTNIK GET OUT THE GUITAR....THE SUN GOING TO SHINE ON MEMPHIS AGAIN!!!!!BLESSINGS TO ALL!

Anonymous said...

Hope reigns eternal...Steve is a lot better than the muckraker Tinker, but I doubt that he will be so revolutionary that 'the sun is going to shine on Memphis again'. The only thing that is going to shine on Memphis is unending crime and political corruption. Check out Sunday's C.A. Herenton had better leave the country. The Feds are going to uncover tons of corruption coming from his administration. The Reginald Finch expose is just one of countless underhanded things that Herenton's administration has perpetrated upon the city of Memphis. Typical Afro leadership.

Mr. Natural said...

Screw liberal AND conservative. Screw the thought and speech police from whatever political persuasion. Have the balls to speak your mind from your own point of view however diverse or unorthodox. Where are the folks that used to march to their on drummers...? All we have now are people who cling tenaciously to carefully prescribed political orthodoxies and are scared to death to step outside of the boundaries. We need a few million mavericks and iconoclasts with balls who aren't afraid to be called names and to be cast out of the comfortable camps. I for one don't give a damn what liberals or consrvatives think about me. I don't fit into either camp, thank goodness. Are there any other like-minded folks out there? Or are you too timorous to be outed as an independent thinker?

Anonymous said...

Timorous----hum that's a big word.You seem to have lots of big words, are you making up for lack of something perhaps?

Mr. Natural said...

I don't consider words of more than two syllables to be 'big'. Maybe you should have gotten a better education. Liberals may not be wise, but they are usually pretty well educated. But then maybe there are a lot of young liberals who are products of the now dysfunctional public school system. Of course this is mainly the result of liberalism, as is most dysfunctionality in our society. However, to be honest conservatives have done their fair share of the damage. I take pot shots at both sides of the political spectrum. I will try to communicate in monosyllables henceforth in the spirit of compassionate conservatism, though I am really not very conservative. By nature I live outside the box. It is a novel idea that you would accuse someone who is fairly well educated to be hiding something. I don't get the connection. I figure it is related to either paranoia or stupidity. Would you care to disclose which it is so that we can get some help for you...perhaps a G.E.D.

Shecky Kierkegaard McGirk said...

Mr. Natural! Are you aka Nature Boy? Or as St. Sinatra wondered ...are you the real Turtle Soup or only the Mock? It seems that you have had an awakening. However! Just what is this box that we all are suppose to be thinking outside of? Is it the universal isness of the totality of all reality? And if so ...how do we get around that? Or does every one have their head stuck up their on personal box from a different demension? Is there a Republican world view box opposed to a Democrat world view box? And to be an Independant thinker do we have to pull our heads out of one or the other boxes? But what if there is a box marked for Independant Thinkers only...could that be defeating the whole purpose? What if we all pulled our heads outside all boxes...would we lose our identities if not our balance and get just a wee bit nauseous? And wasn't Senator Edwards thinking outside the box when he had an affair with someone other than his ailing wife. He definitely wasn't banging outside of the box! Or maybe we should be respectful of all these mysterious, indivisable boxes for our little noggins...for they are all marked F R A G I L E!(which Groucho thought was an Itallian name!) As Father Farken would say "PEACE ON YAH!" My Best!Shecky

Mr. Natural said...

All I am saying is that too many people align themselves with one of two points of view, either liberal or conservative, or Republican or Democrat. It's as though there is not a third possibility. There seem to be certain orthodoxies on both sides that one dare not refute. I am making an appeal for independent thinking and screw the orthodoxies. That is all...nothing too cosmic. I am thinking about forming a 'Jump Up My Ass' Party.

Shecky Kierkegaard McGirk said...

Wait a minute! We can become Independent Thinkers by thinking outside of liberal, conservative, Republican, &/or Democratic boxes & by joining the newly established JUMA Party! Mr. Natural! I am very interested in joining your most worthy cause! Just a few questions! Are there any folks out there that think inside their box but do so creatively & meaningfully?....and Father Farken tells me that to the Jewish Mystics, Early Church Fathers & to people like GK Chesterton & Thomas Merton that Living Orthodoxy was vibrant & organic.....never rigid! Must they join our Party too or should we invest in (thinkingoutsideofthebox)-cutters & liberate the whole Farken planet.
Yours truly! Shecky

Mr. Natural said...

Living Orthodoxy might work! Thanks for the steer. I have been bummed because I don't fit either the liberal or conservative mold. I slink around on the periphery of the political establishment being shunned and booed by both liberals and conservatives. I just want some company out here in the political netherworld. I think that I could hang with Thoreau or St. Francis, but they are dead.

Anonymous said...

I heard that Thoreau was an annoying roommate.

Mr. Natural said...

I wasn't thinking of rooming with him...just resonating with his consciousness. Familiarity breeds contempt. That is why the commune venture was a failure. Too much of a good thing can become a bad thing.

Anonymous said...

THOREAU? AIN'T HE THE ONE THAT POLUTED WALDEN'S BLEEPING POND? CONRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER FOR MR. STEVE COHEN! HE COULDN'T HAVE BEEN ELECTED WITHOUT THE HELP & SUPPORT OF THE GRACIOUS BLACK BROTHERS & SISTERS OF MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE! PEACE TO MEMPHIS! SIREEN THE MEMPHIS QUEEN

James Parks said...

I am so proud of the people of Memphis!
By re-electing Steve Cohen they finally have overcome at least one color barrier. Maybe there IS hope for my polarized hometown, after all. This was a great victory for Memphians, and a most deserved victory for Mr. Cohen.

CONGRATS STEVE COHEN!
You kept your head above your opponent's nasty tactics, by running an honorable campaign, and by God you won anyway! Good job!

Now let's hope OBAMA can do the same thing in his election. (I think I smell victory for Democrats, all around) Thank the Lord! It's about time.

Way to go -- Memphis!
Congressman Cohen, as he always has, will serve you all, very well.

James Parks
Jamsprks@gMail.com