Flimsy Sanity: Paul Wellstone RIP 5 years ago today

Flimsy Sanity

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Paul Wellstone RIP 5 years ago today

The right wing attack machine still talks about Vince Foster's death but the death of Paul Wellstone is way more suspicious.

In a senate that is one heartbeat away from Republican control, Wellstone was more than just another Democrat. He was often the lone voice standing firm against the status-quo policies of both the Democrats and the Republicans. As such, he earned the special ire of the Bush administration and the Republican Party, who made Wellstone's defeat that party's number one priority this year.

Various White House figures made numerous recent campaign stops in Minnesota to stump for the ailing campaign of Wellstone's Republican opponent, Norm Coleman. Despite being outspent and outgunned, however, polls show that Wellstone's popularity surged after he voted to oppose the Senate resolution authorizing George Bush to wage war in Iraq. He was pulling ahead of Coleman and moving toward a victory that would both be an embarrassment to the Bush administration and to Democratic Quislings such as Hillary Clinton who voted to support "the president."

Then he died.

Wellstone now joins the ranks of other American politicians who died in small plane crashes. Another recent victim was Missouri's former Democratic governor, Mel Carnahan, who lost his life in 2000, three weeks before Election Day, during his Senatorial race against John Ashcroft. Carnahan went on to become the first dead man to win a Senatorial race, humiliating and defeating the unpopular Ashcroft posthumously. Ashcroft, despite his unpopularity, went on to be appointed Attorney General by George W. Bush. Investigators determined that Carnahan's plane went down due to "poor visibility."

Carnahan was the second Missouri politician to die in a small plane crash. The first was Democratic Representative Jerry Litton, whose plane crashed the night he won the Democratic nomination for senate in 1976. His Republican opponent ultimately captured the seat from his successor in November.

When I heard Wellstone's plane went down, I immediately thought of Panamanian General Omar Torrijos, who in 1981 thumbed his nose at the Reagan/Bush administration and threatened to destroy the Panama Canal in the event of a U.S. invasion. Torrijos died shortly thereafter when the instruments in his plane failed to function upon takeoff. Panamanians speculated that the U.S. was involved in the death of the popular dictator, who was replaced by a U.S. intelligence operative, Manuel Noreiga, who previously worked with George Bush Senior.

There is no indication today that Wellstone's death was the result of foul play. What we do know, however, is that Wellstone emerged as the most visible obstacle standing in the way of a draconian political agenda by an unelected government. And now he is conveniently gone.
AlterNet article points out that plane wrecks seem to always happen to liberals and people who are against the power.


  • At 6:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Paul Wellstone had been a target of an assassin once before. He was strident opponent of Plan Colombia, a U.S. military aid package which involves massive aerial spraying of lands believed to be growing cocaine and the use of private military contractors employed by companies like DynCorp. Wellstone had traveled to Colombia to evaluate the program.

    Shortly after his arrival on Dec. 1, 2000, as reported by a number of news sources including the AP, a bomb was found along his route from the airport. Although the State Department later downplayed the incident, the general opinion was, and remains, that as an outspoken critic of CIA and covert operations, Wellstone had indeed been a target.

    Those suspicions gained credibility the next day when Wellstone and his staff were sprayed with glyphosate, a chemical that has been routinely documented as the cause of a variety of illnesses in the local population. It has left certain regions of Colombia, as one native put it, "Without butterflies or birds."


  • At 4:15 PM, Anonymous CV Rick said…

    Not meaning to spam your blog here, but I met Senator Wellstone one time. I blogged about it here.

    I have to say that there isn't anything I don't like about him, his stances, his positions, his speeches and his character. The man was the one politician in a million. I miss him.

    I don't know if he was killed. I just can't say. Right after his plane went down I was adamant with friends that it had to be just an accident, but more and more evidence points to the fact that it might not have been.

    I do know that Norm Coleman was in a meeting in Missouri the morning that Wellstone died. He was meeting with Ashcroft's former campaign manager about strategy. The odd thing is that he might be the only campaign manager in the nation to have the dubious distinction of orchestrating a campaign against a recently deceased opponent. Coincidence?

  • At 4:45 PM, Blogger Flimsy Sanity said…

    Wow Rick, that was an interesting entry. This winter, I am going to start reading your blog from the beginning. I remember national news doing a piece on how Wellstone first ran with this really low budget and he made this hilarious ad where he was rushing from place to place. I was living in a different state, but I wished I lived in Minnesota so I could have voted for him. He was one of the few people in all of Washington with any ethics. I believe you when you say he was also a decent, unassuming man.

  • At 5:46 PM, Anonymous CV Rick said…

    I set a goal last April to do a post every day . . . so before last April the posts are pretty sparse. But since then I've been getting one out every day. It's been hard because this is my busy season . . . I'm working 7 days a week until December, but since it's my own business and I'm the one doing the scheduling I really can't complain.

    But this winter, I'm also going to get back to catching up on my blog reading, updating my own blogroll - which is sadly behind and neglected, and doing my book reviews again.

    I can't wait.


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