The Republican co-chair of President Obama’s Deficit Commission, former Sen. Alan Simpson, has a certain knack for controversy. Recently he described the Social Security system as a “milk cow with 310 million tits.” Now, Simpson has taken on Vietnam veterans claiming Agent Orange injuries as people who are “not helping us to save the country.”
Simpson objects that the Agent Orange claims are paid out too freely and run “contrary to efforts to control federal spending.” He said the “irony” is that “the veterans who saved this country are now, in a way, not helping us to save the country in this fiscal mess.”
Simpson found a particularly bad way to express concerns that have been spoken by others. For example, diabetes has become the most frequently compensated ailment among Vietnam veterans — despite a lack of research connecting Agent Orange and diabetes.
This is a case of a legitimate concern being expressed in the worse possible way. In defense of Simpson, he is an Army veteran who has historically supported military spending and support.
Source: Think Progress
77 thoughts on “Former Sen. Simpson Under Attack for Criticism of Vietnam Veterans For Agent Orange Claims”
XO from 😳 to
Your reading is correct and no apology is required.
Sad to say my spin was purely unintentional … it was just the way the tread of our conversation went and at the last moment I saw the possibility… I’m not all that clever so I thank you for the graciousness of the grade.
I understand what you are saying completely for, as I posted earlier, having to remain in a position where I knew my personal promise of integrity to myself was compromised, I chose to leave. I could not give the real reason without violating the confidence of the situation. However … had you been one of the parties with whom I had dealt, I think it is possible that I could have been honest with you. Politics seems to create these convoluted situations.
So, if I may, to repeat back to you what it is I think you are saying … your own personal sense of integrity would not permit you to vote for her even in the privacy of the booth. If I have got it right then my prevailing upon you to change your mind would be like asking you to set aside your integrity simply for political gain of another.
If this is so then I apologize for not seeing it sooner.
I will give you an A on your spin skills.
But first, a stipulation. I will stipulate I’m a strange man.
I often think sideways. If you don’t know what I mean by that, I hope the following will clarify.
Your spin is quite good and I’m not handing out an idyll complement. I am, however, very difficult to spin to. I’ve dissected so much propaganda in my day that spin sticks to me just about as well as insults do.
I still wouldn’t vote for her. But luckily for you, I’m not most voters. Your spin will surely reach another pragmatist out there to take my place. I’d probably even encourage others to vote for her although I would still personally abstain for reasons that are quite personal, related to my ability to sleep at night and to look in a mirror long enough to shave.
If my choices are “Hell with the lid on” or “Hell with the lid off”, I’ll take, “Hell doesn’t exist except for what we make for each other. This is a bad game you monkeys are playing so I’m going to sit back and watch the poo fly without helping either side. Any monkeys wishing to clean up, I have a roll of paper towels I’m willing to share.”
It has been noted before I can take unusual stands (my leaning skeptic stance on the WTC issue for example), but I try to always make them principled in accord to the dictates of my conscience. No matter how odd they may seem to the observer. I will seek a third way whenever politics – but especially bad politics – forces a false dichotomy upon my choices. It is simply my nature.
To put it another way, someone is trying to decide on their method of suicide and they ask my help in choosing. “Gun or Rope”. Unless they have an ethically compelling argument as to why I should assist their suicide instead of leaving that karma to them (such as a quality of life issue or something similarly dire), I’m going to tell them “Door”. As in walk out of the door and start over on a new path.
Abstention is merely choosing to vote against both evils instead of choosing a lesser in a contest of fake choices. It doesn’t mean I’ll cease to work towards goals that best benefit as many as possible. I’ll just go about it a different way. As I as said, I think this is one of those situations where Pelosi or Boner makes no difference as the end result will be the same: the interests of citizens thrown under the bus for the love of corporatist money and the weakness in politicians created by their own over inflated egos. Orangina results in a bad outcome because he’s directly and without question venal and egoistically evil, Pelosi results in a similar if not identical outcome because she’s weak in the face of evil and an oath breaker for the sake of political expedience (and more than a bit of a scumbag herself).
I’ll choose other ways to help my fellow being throw off the yoke of tyranny, but I won’t directly help Nancy Pelosi after her bad acts of record regarding the rule of law. Unless by “help” you mean “tell her to kiss my loyal to the Constitution ass” in which case I’d consider it.
Because I’m just that kind of guy.
If the contest is between her and the Orangeman (and in the end that is how it lines up)… and since you ” … truly do despise her only marginally less than the Orange Boner.” … does that mean a vote for her?
As a lawyer, don’t you appreciate the spin I just accomplished!?
I saw an interesting montage of clips of Rep. John Boner(Sorry, spelling error….tee hee) on TV the other night. In one clip he was wearing a bright orange tie which coordinated beautifully with his bright orange face. I laughed so hard that I never did hear what he was saying. Too bad- It was probably one of his usual gems of misinformation.
I should answer D.
However, since you’ve constrained my answer to general and not primary voting, my hands are tied to C. I really feel that strongly about her. By not upholding her oath of office, she’s as complicit in Cheney’s treason as Bush is complicit. I truly do despise her only marginally less than the Orange Boner. To use a WWII analogy, they represent the difference between Vichy France and Bavaria.
“Consider my vote for her one of no confidence.”
Accepted as your right.
Scenario: If you and I were voters in her district, in the general (not the primary)election, I would vote for her and you would:
A. vote for her
B. vote for her opponent
C. refrain from marking your ballot
D. refuse to answer ’cause it’s none of your business, Blouise
lol, I wont. 😀 She “stupefied” herself on that one.
Now don’t go blaming our US educational system because Pelosi can’t spell “rule of law.”
As a practical matter so would I but I’d prefer she be replaced by reason of being displaced in her home district by a Democratic challenger who can actually spell “rule of law”.
I’ll take Pelosi over John “Agent Orange” Boehner any day!
While recognizing your reasons and right to support her, I still retain the right to think she’s an oath breaking scumbag who has done as much to damage the rule of law (our only hope for long term survival as a species by the way) as anyone short of the Neocons proper and ergo abstain from endorsing her.
Consider my vote for her one of no confidence.
Swarthmore mom, Blouise, & Buddha,
I’m not happy with the Democrats. Still, the last thing I want to see is Republicans taking control of the House or the Senate.
“Your choice might be valid if the DNC had showed even an ounce of spine up this point. But they’ll do what they’ve done all along: throw the American public under the bus to either 1) appease their Wall St. banker buddies or 2) in the name of bi-partisanship with a GOP that has no interest in compromise.”
On that point (the DNC) you will get no argument from me.
As Sw mom pointed out there is one good reason (safety net)but many others also. A well ordered House under Pelosi or a chaotic frat party under the Orangeman … the list goes on
For those in need, Pelosi is a real choice.
Or neither will.
Which is what will happen.
Your choice might be valid if the DNC had showed even an ounce of spine up this point. But they’ll do what they’ve done all along: throw the American public under the bus to either 1) appease their Wall St. banker buddies or 2) in the name of bi-partisanship with a GOP that has no interest in compromise.
Lesser of two evils? Yeah, Nancy may be that. She still sucks though and in the end the net result is the same.
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