Thursday, December 01, 2005

Have Pity On Cindy

"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it." -- W. C. Fields

I have to admit it. I was all ready to defend poor misguided, mistreated little Cindy Sheehan. After all, I have a heart. When I saw her in that photo sitting there all forlorn and lonely, and looking so vulnerable at her book signing, my heart went out to her.

I figured that some photographer had seized upon the opportunity to make her look even more pitiful than she is by catching her in a moment when there just didn't happen to be anyone having a copy of her book signed. I've never been to a book signing, (I did happen to wander in to a music store one time when Charlie Pride was autographing his new album, but I wasn't there long, so I can't say how many he actually did sign) so I assumed there is sometimes a lull in the activity from time to time.

I was right.

According to AP reports, Cindy took offense that the media was making things appear much worse than they were, with their slanted reporting of the failure of her book's debut. She said, if my memory serves me correctly, that they sold out their entire on-hand inventory of 100 books and made $2,000.00 for the Casey fund.

Good for her!

And just as I suspected, some unscrupulous photographer had sneaked in and caught her in an unguarded moment, making it appear that no one showed up for the party.

The Washington Post reported it this way:

"Sheehan found herself addressing a crowd of only about 100 on Saturday afternoon. The large tent where supporters had erected a stage hung with the banner 'Speak Truth to Power' was only partially full. Earlier, Sheehan signed copies of her new book for an even smaller crowd."

Interestingly enough, I can't seem to find any of the articles I read just 2 days ago about the low turn out at her book signing.

At any rate, as I said, I was all ready to come to her defense and tell those evil Conservatives to get off her back. She's had her moment in the sun. Several in fact. And she deserves some respect for her tireless efforts to put an end to what she believes is a needless war with needless deaths, including that of her son.

And then I heard that any book signing by Sean Hannity and Ann Coulter has lines that stretch around the block full of people wanting to buy and have their own copies of their respective books autographed. They both said signing 6,000 books in one day was common.

That makes Cindy's 100 books sold seem pretty insignificant.

I think Ms. Sheehan has begun to lose her effectiveness in her war against the President. From the information I read, but can no longer retrieve, there really aren't even very many reporters hanging around her anymore. I suppose the few that are there are assigned to her, just in case she does or says something either monumental or stupid enough to generate some interest to their audience.

I think it's time for her to salvage what's left of her dignity and just go home. She has become irrelevant. And I will admit to feeling some compassion for her predicament. She has unfortunately lodged herself between the proverbial rock and the proverbial hard place, and extrication will take some doing. She will need help. She cannot get out of this one on her own.

Actually, I do feel sorry for Ms. Sheehan. I feel sorry that she has allowed herself to become a pawn of the anti-Bush crowd. I feel sorry that her original mission has become lost amid the pomp and circumstance of the various lunatic fringe movements, such as the American Socialists and the American Communist Party. I think even Cindy would admit that they have done more to distract attention from her cause than they have helped. I feel sorry that her entire life has become a media circus, and something of a comic strip.

I also feel sorry for her because she has lost focus within the glare of the spotlight. No longer is the story about the loss of her son, who fought bravely and died for her very right to protest. The story now is Cindy Sheehan herself.

And that, I believe, may be the real tragedy.


MadMustard said...

In August during the media spectacle surrounding Cindy’s protest at the Crawford Ranch, I was concerned that she would become a left-wing equivalent of Terri Schiavo.

Interest groups love to ‘cabbage on’ to a sympathetic victim in order to advance their narrow political agenda. It is disgusting, because in the end their legitimate pain becomes a national joke.

It will fire-up the base, raise money and get short-lived media attention; but what cost does the victim pay? To Middle America, the passion play appears disingenuous.

Sheila said...


I agree whole heartedly with you and Mark's commentary proves the point. How shallow was this commentary? Who ever wrote it is showing a pretty hateful stance.

Mark said...

Sheila, I wrote the commentary, and I was being serious. I do feel sorry for Cindy Sheehan. She has become a pawn of the Bush haters and the death of her son no longer has any meaning, at least, not to anyone but her.

I believe the death of her son is a tragedy but not as much a tragedy as the way the left wing has taken advantage of her. She needs to go home and go on with her life, away from politics. She obviously has bit off more than she can chew, much the same way I did when I first dared to start a political blog when I am so obviously ignorant as to the inner workings of politics in general.

Believe me, this is not hate, but sympathy.

Gayle said...

Mark, you are a kinder person that I am. No, I don't "hate" Cindy either. But I really don't think it was ever about her son. I truly believe it was about using her son for her political agenda. I'm not saying she didn't love her son. I have no way of knowing how she felt about him. The left says one thing, the right says another. As usual, somewhere in the middle is probably closest to the truth, but we will never know.

She has been a left-wing activist before. Rebel-rousing is nothing new to her. The difference between Cindy Sheehan and myself is that I would not have done this if my son died in an effort to fight terrorism and keep them out of this country. I would have felt to do that would be to dishonor my son. I would not have blamed President Bush because my son volunteered for the army. It wasn't a draft.

President Bush interviewed with Cindy twice, but because she didn't get him to withdraw from Iraq she just kept on keeping on. The media did exactly what Cindy wanted them to do by publicizing her every time she opened her mouth. But the media is fickle. Now that she is losing support the media is no longer her friend. She should have seen it coming.

There was nothing hateful about your commentary... and it was obvious that you wrote it! It's a good post and shows that you care about people. There is nothing hateful about my commentary either. I don't "hate" Cindy Sheehan. I do think she showed extremely bad judgment and made a fool out of herself. But everyone in this country has the right to do that, don't they?

A change of subject: Regarding the comment you left on my blog about the Rain Forests: I agree with you. I see how trees multiply right here on my own property! It's nearly impossible to control them.

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

President Bush interviewed with Cindy twice

He did?! When was this?

Anonymous said...

"I think it's time for her to salvage what's left of her dignity and just go home."

Regardless of how you feel about her politics, neither Cindy Sheehan nor anyone else who has lost a child in war needs to come to you for "dignity."

This entire sad thread demonstrates the willingness of some to gleefully trash the victims to win a few political points.


The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Her status as a gold star mom deserves sympathy and respect for her grief; but it doesn't earn her immunity from criticism. You can find critics amongst fellow gold star moms and the enlisted men who serve currently, and in wars past.

If you're going to expose yourself out into the public arena, you're going to have to face your critics and suck it up when they react in a manner you aren't going to like.

Pamela Reece said...

I think most conservatives agree with you, Mark. Cindy's 15 minutes of fame is over. I also agree she allowed herself to get caught up in a whirlwind of left wing radicals. He message was lost and that is truly sad.

Mark said...

Anon, I am not suggesting she come to me for dignity, and frankly, I don't know where you get that from what I wrote. Be that as it may, I am not suggesting she go amywhere for anything except home to live out the rest of her life...OUT of the spotlight.

She needs to move on with her life for her own sanity. Otherwise she will just become another annoying voice of dissent along with so many others who most Americans no longer give any credibility to. I am suggesting she save herself that embarrassment and I think that's very compassionate of me.

BRUISER said...

What the crap is this Mark? Cindy is old news ...she was completely right but still old news... Why not try and cover the truths being told by Jack Murtha or what about the lack of honesty by most of those in your political the Duke Libby Rove Abramoffs of this country sponsored by the GOP? Wake up and quit rehashing Foxnews talking points already. Does continuing to smear the mother of a dead soldier make you more of an American? Or Does your parties disregard for honesty run that deep?

Puma said...

Cindy Sheehan has never pretended to be anything other than a mother with her heart ripped out. It is easy to go after her; easy to judge her actions from where you sit. Do you have children? I sincerely doubt it, and one day when you do have them, you will begin to understand what it means to lose one.
I have to agree with Bruiser. How about attempting to explain your reasons for your allegience to these liars, cheats, and Fortunate Sons stinking up our government these days instead?

Pamela Reece said...

Sarah, as a matter of fact Mark does have children and I have 4. Perhaps it is you that doesn't have children because neither of us would use our children as a way to get something. Her son VOLUNTEERED to enlist. He wasn't drafted or forced to serve his country. He died an honorable death. Cindy Sheehan's days of using her son is over and I pity her. I felt sorry for her when she started her campaign and I pity her even more now. Why? Because she may be realizing the truths of those who took advantage of her and her loss.

BRUISER said...

Sarah thanks for at least being one person who agrees that Mrs. Sheehan is not an "evil" person, rather just a grieving one. If her words can in anyway make someone at the Top of the Federal Foodchain think twice about their policies I say let her speak. To those who would criticize her I ask you this: If your son or daughter can die for the policies and vision of one man, can that man not look you in the eyes and answer the questions you may have?

A forthright and honorable President would have done so instead of employing his PR machine to smear her and devalue the life that her son gave for his country.

tugboatcapn said...

Bruiser, the President has already met with Ms. Sheehan, so stop saying that he won't.

He did.

Her son VOLUNTEERED to go to Iraq. TWICE.

He understood what was going on, and wanted to help, whether SHE does or not.

Her tale is a very sad one, and I have the utmost sympathy for her greif, but when she allied herself with the likes of Michael Moore, and Americans Coming Together, (which has incidentally busted apart,) she opened herself up to the criticism that those people and groups deserve.

There are many people who have lost children to this noble cause, but she is the only one who has decided to be a pest and a nuisance to the President, and the Anti-War, Anti-Bush, Anti-American Left was all too happy to use her for their own purposes.

Im wish her relief of her pain, I wish her happiness, I wish her long life and prosperity.

And I wish her privacy and anonynimity. I wish she would go away.

I hope that she can live comfortably with the fact that she is dishonoring the legacy of her son in order to make a political statement.

Mike's America said...

Mark: This was ALWAYS a story about Cindy with her son's casket as the stage.

If she cared so much for her family, why did she abandon the surviving members and move to Oakland so she could be closer to her lefty pals?

Oh, and she sold her house in Vacaville after it had been totally renovated with volunteer labor and materials. Wonder how those suckers feel about being used?

Don said...

It was always about Cindy and never about Casey. How sad.

Old Soldier said...


I'm getting tired of your snippets about Abramoff, so here are a few Democratic connects to Abramoff:

Received contributions: Dick Gephardt, Nancy Pelosi, Tom Daschle & Harry Reid.

Received paid trips: Gregory Meeks, Michael McNutty, Bennie Thompson & James Clayburn.

Had use of Abramoff's Skybox: Tom Harkin & Byron Dorgan.

Now, get off Abramoff!

Where the Hell was Bill Clinton when the hero soldiers killed in the streets of Mogadishu were buried? You are aware, Bruiser, that old Billy-Jeff held the decision to rescue the soldiers of what became Blackhawk Down at the National Command Authority level? I'm sure with all your vast military experience you will instantly recognize the delay in the decision to send reinforcements causing those soldiers to die NEEDLESSLY was made by Clinton himself! Wow, what a leader! He really took care of those guys under fire, didn't he? Clinton's lack of leadership ability is why the military by and large loathed Clinton.

As for Cindy, she is a leech of Casey's honor. She puts words in his mouth that he would not speak. She is an opportunistic media whore. She really wants to be today's Jane Fonda, but she'll never make it as Barbarella - too old and too ugly!

You would be well advised to linearly align your defecation before you perversely exercise your right to freedom of speech. You know, that freedom bought and paid for with the blood of patriots that you dishonor? (I'm sure you recognized the military PC term for "get your shit straight".)

Mike's America said...

"lineraly align your..."

I learn something new every day!

Good one Old Soldier!

BRUISER said...

This is for Old Soldier who is just some dumb your Republican who should unlike his President learn to read a newspaper:

Jack Abramoff is currently under investigation by the Justice Department, the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, the IRS, the Department of the Interior, and the FBI. Don't you think it's time for the House Ethics Committee to look into Tom DeLay's role in these unscrupulous deals? Email Representative Doc Hastings today and tell him you want the House Ethics Committee to investigate this web of corruption.

Rep. Eric I. Cantor (R-VA) is Chief Deputy Majority Whip and an ally of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay.

In June 2003, Jack Abramoff persuaded Tom DeLay to organize a letter, co-signed by Speaker Hastert, Whip Roy Blunt and Deputy Whip Eric Cantor to endorse a view of gambling law benefitting an Abramoff client, the Louisiana-based Coushatta Tribe.Representative Melissa A. Hart's (R-PA) dealings with Jack Abramoff and Tom DeLay were exposed in a New York Times story on April 30, 2005. Rep. Hart has received $15,000 from Tom Delay's Political Action Committee, ARMPAC. She also held a fund-raiser on Sept. 24, 2003 at Signatures Restaurant, which is owned by Jack Abramoff.Representative J.D. Hayworth was the Co-Chair of the House Native American Caucus in 2001. During that time he held several fundraisers in Jack Abramoff's luxury sports arena skyboxes. Though the boxes were in Abramoff's name, they were paid for by Indian tribes. Hayworth failed to report his use of these skyboxes, as required by law.Representative J.D. Hayworth was the Co-Chair of the House Native American Caucus in 2001. During that time he held several fundraisers in Jack Abramoff's luxury sports arena skyboxes. Though the boxes were in Abramoff's name, they were paid for by Indian tribes. Hayworth failed to report his use of these skyboxes, as required by law.Representative J.D. Hayworth was the Co-Chair of the House Native American Caucus in 2001. During that time he held several fundraisers in Jack Abramoff's luxury sports arena skyboxes. Though the boxes were in Abramoff's name, they were paid for by Indian tribes. Hayworth failed to report his use of these skyboxes, as required by law.

. U.S. Senator John Cornyn played an integral role as then-Texas Attorney General in closing the Tigua Indian tribe's Speaking Rock Casino near El Paso, Texas in February 2002. Cornyn's effort to close down the casino was supported by a grassroots campaign led by conservative Christian lobbyist Ralph Reed. Reed was paid over $4 million to lead the campaign by the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana - funneled through Jack Abramoff -- which wanted to put the Tigua's rival casino out of business. After the Tigua's casino was successfully shut down, Abramoff convinced the Tigua to hire him and Mike Scanlon to lobby Congress to re-open it.
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay once referred to Abramoff as "one of his closest and dearest friends." This is no surprise given the $40,000 Abramoff and his wife have personally donated to DeLay and his PAC, not to mention the multiple overseas expense paid trips that Abramoff set up for DeLay and his top staffers to Russia, Saipan and Britain over the years. Funding for these trips has been closely tied to Indian gaming tribes, Russian business tycoons and overseas sweatshop operators.
United States Representative Bob Ney's (R-OH) relationship with Jack Abramoff began in 2002 when Abramoff lobbied to have Ney insert the provision into an unrelated bill that would help the Tigua tribe, one of his clients, re-open their casino.
Jack Abramoff and Grover Norquist have known each other since 1980 when they took over the College Republicans together. Years later, Abramoff turned to Norquist to help organize a coalition of anti-tax organizations to lobby against taxes on Indian casinos.
Ralph Reed, a longtime Republican activist and former executive director of the Christian Coalition, has been an associate of Jack Abramoff's his entire political career.
United States Senator Conrad Burns (R-MT) is the Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, which has jurisdiction over the budget of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Rep. Richard Pombo (R-CA) recently became Chairman of the House Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over Indian affairs.
Jack Abramoff hosted a September 2003 fundraiser for Senator David Vitter (R-LA) just two months before Vitter inserted a provision into an Interior spending bill for one of Abramoff's clients, the Coushatta Indians of Louisiana
Though an "ardent opponent of casino gambling" Representative John Doolittle held at least one fundraiser at Jack Abramoff's skybox at the MCI Center
Susan Hirschmann, a former chief of staff to Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX), has been one of the main go-betweens for Jack Abramoff and Tom DeLay
Ed Buckham is a former chief of staff to Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) and the founder of the Alexander Strategy Group, a powerful lobbying firm in Washington, DC.
Neil Volz was Representative Bob Ney's chief of staff when Jack Abramoff had Ney insert a provision into an unrelated bill that would re-open the Tigua Indian Tribe's casino.
. Mr. Abramoff has been indicted on fraud charges in Florida in a case related to his $147.5 million purchase of a gambling casino. He also faces probes by two Senate panels and a federal grand jury, which may yield criminal charges
Lobbyist Jack Abramoff listened to his attorney, Abbe Lowell, as he refused to answer questions before the Senate Indian Affairs Committee last year.
Endemic corruption plus public unhappiness over other policies: It's a very combustible combination," says Norman Ornstein, senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a generally conservative think tank in Washington.
"The story is alarming in its depth and breadth of potential wrongdoing," said Sen. John McCain (R) of Ariz.
Earlier this year, David Safavian, former chief of staff of the General Services Administration, was charged with making false statements and obstructing justice in connection with a golf trip that Abramoff organized for lawmakers, including Representatives DeLay and Ney, in 2002.
Abramoff and former Christian Coalition leader Ralph Reed, who reportedly was paid at least $4 million to block casino proposals that would have competed with casinos owned by Abramoff's tribal clients
The appearance of ties to Abramoff is derailing careers. Timothy Flanigan, a senior lawyer at Tyco International, a former lobbying client of Abramoff, withdrew his nomination as deputy attorney general last month.
With Mr. DeLay's eager backing and Mr. Abramoff's help, Mr. Norquist engineered a shift in the city's lobbying corps by making it clear to K Street firms and trade associations that if they wanted access on Capitol Hill, they had to hire and donate to more Republicans.
Mr. Abramoff attended his wedding on April 2, yet Mr. Norquist described him as simply a "friend," someone he has lunch or dinner with a few times a year. "I knew him when we were in college," he said. "But there's no business or financial relationship."
But Mr. Abramoff's lobbying billing records for one client, recently released under a Freedom of Information Act request, show that Mr. Abramoff billed for consulting with Mr. Norquist.
Mr. Norquist and Mr. Abramoff worked together to help Mr. Abramoff's first big client, the Northern Mariana Islands. The garment industry there relies on cheap labor from China, and the local government was trying to avoid imposition of American minimum wage and immigration laws. Mr. Norquist promoted the Marianas in his meetings and speeches as a model of free enterprise, while Mr. Abramoff collected nearly $9 million in lobbying fees and sent members of Congress on fact-finding and golf trips to the islands.

Mr. Abramoff also billed the islands for thousands of dollars for "discussions" with Mr. Norquist and to send a staff member to the Wednesday meetings, as well as for airfare to the Marianas for staff members of Americans for Tax Reform.

Mr. Norquist sounded surprised to learn that he showed up so frequently in Mr. Abramoff's billing records. Mr. Abramoff, he said, must have been name-dropping.

Indian tribes say Mr. Abramoff dropped Mr. Norquist's name when he began trying to win their business. Mr. Norquist used his platform to argue against taxing Indian gambling. Mr. Abramoff billed the tribes tens of millions of dollars to try to fend off antigambling groups and regulators and to send members of Congress on lavish overseas trips. The tribes say Mr. Abramoff also instructed them to give money to Mr. Norquist's groups as way of getting an audience with the Bush administration. The tribes gave $1.5 million to Americans for Tax Reform and $250,000 to the Council of Republicans for Environmental Advocacy, the group founded by Mr. Norquist and Ms. Norton.
has learned exclusive new details about the gangland-style hit in Florida of Gus Boulis, whose murder figures prominently in lobbyist Jack Abramoff’s rise to power.

The 'secret world' of Jack Abramoff being probed by investigators today has definite connections and unmistakable links to the one inhabited during their final year in the U.S by Mohamed Atta and the other hijackers.
One of the most amazing thing about this most amazing scandal—hundreds of millions in slush funds beats Oval Office blowjobs by a mile—is that some of the same names in the Abramoff scandal also surface in connection with Mohamed Atta’s.

Less than a week before the 9.11 attack, for example, Atta and several other hijackers made a still-unexplained visit onboard one of Abramoff’s casino boats.

What were they doing there? No one knows.
They were called “cruises to nowhere.” And in short order the boats were generating hundreds of millions of dollars a year in revenues. Hundreds of million of dollars of unregulated revenue…

While not getting ahead of ourselves, we still note that this was more than enough money to help tip the balance in the last two Presidential elections. At a minimum, for the casino operators it provided instant access to anything and anybody worth being accessed.

Thanks to the Johnson Act, we’re protecting our coral reefs. But we may have lost our democracy.
This situation clearly suits some people just fine…. While Governor Jeb Bush may be minutely concerned with what happened to Terry Schiavo fifteen years ago, on this issue of real interest—massive corruption—he phones in his regrets.

Mark said...

Bruiser, I read a lot of that on Wikipedia, too. He sure sounds like a scummy little snake.

Has he been convicted of anything?

By the way, how does he compare with murderers Ted Kennedy and Gary Conyers?

Puma said...

pamela, then you should be ashamed of yourselves, for judging someone else's pain at the loss of a child in this obscene way. I only hope one day you do not learn what some of us have already learned: that it is not just difficult to go on with life after losing a child; it is almost impossible. There is no such thing as an "honorable death." Who are you to judge? Who do you think you are?

And tugboatdapn, Ms Sheehan herself has already recounted, in detail, her previous meetings with Mr. Bush. It is those meetings themselves that led her to ask the questions she now asks. What is it about that question of hers that scares you people so?

tugboatcapn said...

No, it is her anti-War activism that has led to her actions now, and the subsequent criticism that she is recieving.

Nobody is scared of her questions. She isn't asking any. She is just being a pest.

I am just glad that people are finally tired enough of her that she will soon disappear.

If she was behaving like a grief stricken mother instead of Michael Moore lite, i might be able to have a little more sympathy for her.

As long as she continues to drag her dead son's memory back and forth outside the President's ranch to try to further a cause that her son would not have supported, I have no use for her.