Myth of the Kennedy Myth

It is fascinating that senator Ted Kennedy should die during the week in which president Obama is vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts on a $35,000-a-week estate at a time when America is suffering through severe economic crisis.


John F. Kennedy once said “I learned about the great depression at Harvard”. In other words, his family wealth insulated him from the nation’s catastrophe of the 1930s.


And while Ted Kennedy will be lionized by some as the hero of the working man, the Democrat party is no such thing – it is the party of super-rich socialism ruling over the people, and the Kennedys have represented that elitism for decades.


The media are going to slobber all over Edward Kennedy for days, as if he were indeed the president that he never became. But a look at both his public and private life – and the lives of many of the Kennedys – reveals their underside and explains why their philosophy is unworkable in practice. Because the Kennedys really represented narcissism and arrogance that is typical of all those on the political left.


Tom Brokaw unwittingly revealed the media template when, commenting on Kennedy’s death, he said that the 1969 Chappaquiddick incident – in which Mary Jo Kopechne drowned as Kennedy tried to do a coverup – was “not well managed”.


This is shocking language, but is the way that the media and the Democrats saw the Kennedy family and American liberalism in general, as something to be manipulated for public consumption. And if you think about what happened at Chappaquiddick, you understand exactly what the Kennedys stood for. They were not some upstanding family living in a mansion but fighting for the little guy as the mythology goes. They were rich and powerful people out to protect themselves at all costs. And we have no idea what really happened in the back halls of JFK’s White House, or how Marilyn Monroe really died. We can only guess. Because the media certainly are not going to investigate.


Just look at the disastrous course of the Obama presidency, and in it you see the upshot of Kennedy liberalism. Americans are not enchanted by this expansion of government power Kennedy-style, but utterly frightened, more frightened than ever before. Because while Kennedy was called The Lion of the Senate, most Americans see in him liberalism’s lion-like penchant for devouring liberty and wealth wholesale. While US senator Bill Nelson of Florida said Kennedy was “the voice of the powerless”, in fact Kennedy represented the lording of rich and powerful Democrats like George Soros, Warren Buffett and the billionaire Hollywood elite over the American people.


In his time, Kennedy authored more than 2,500 bills in the US Senate. Yet freedom is the antithesis of all this legislation. Freedom means that government passes few laws and makes few demands and dictates little of the behavior of the people. This ‘workingman’s hero’ Ted Kennedy was, in one single figure, an example of where we must not go in order to maintain our freedom and our prosperity.


In 1991, Ted Kennedy was drawn into the rape trail of his nephew William Kennedy Smith in Florida. In fact it was Teddy who awoke his nephew and urged him to go out partying on that fateful night. Quipped conservative Pat Buchanan after the incident: “How many 60-year-olds do you know who still go to Spring Break in Florida?”


Amen. A piercing of the Kennedy hot-air balloon is what this nation needs a lot more of.


Why was Ted Kennedy such a longtime alcoholic? Why did Kennedy’s first wife Joan become an alcoholic? Was that part of the Kennedy Mystique?


Where is the drunkenness and drug abuse of Mrs. Ronald Reagan? Or Mrs. George HW Bush? Or Mrs. McCain? Or Mrs. George W. Bush? Or Mrs. Mitt Romney? Because there was none.


Why should a member of such a privileged family be so dysfunctional as Ted Kennedy was? Why are liberals’ negative proclivities always discounted and the good behavior of conservatives never held up as an example for American living, but only ridiculed?


Yes, we are going to hear days worth of mourning and every minute will be covered. “He wasn’t a hater,” said Joe Scarborough, a conservative commentator on MSNBC.


Yet where was Ted Kennedy to use his stature to call a halt to the eight years of vicious attacks on George Bush and Dick Cheney by the Democrat party and its acolytes in the media and on the internet?


He was silent. He could have used his power to influence the rhetoric but did not. And he trashed Supreme Court nominees Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas in despicable speeches that sparked a new generation of political divisiveness. Here is what Kennedy said about Robert Bork on the floor of the US Senate:


“Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored…”


In Massachusetts in 2004, the overwhelmingly Democrat state legislature hurriedly passed a law at the urging of Kennedy himself that would have altered the state process for selecting a US senator to fill the seat of John Kerry should he be elected president. At the time, the governor was Republican Mitt Romney and the Democrats feared that Kerry’s seat could be given to a Republican. Today, the Massachusetts Democrats have been asked – by Kennedy before he died – to undo that very legislation to ease the way for a Democrat to be picked to replace Kennedy. In other words, to Democrats, politics is everything. And to the Kennedys it always was too.


The media are going to flatter Ted Kennedy’s memory as if he were The Last Great Hope, that he carried the family banner, that the Kennedys have suffered such great tragedy. But the Kennedys have been powerful, arrogant and abusive toward many of their fellow countrymen. They have pushed strongly socialistic programs that have gutted the middle class; they have abused women; they have used their muscle to push aside any opposition in the stealing of the 1960 presidential election for JFK; and they have exhibited myriad terrible personal behaviors. In fact the worst enemy of the Kennedy family has been the Kennedys themselves.


Sure, Ted Kennedy was a “nice guy” who was friendly to even his political opponents in the US Senate, and they all will speak kindly of him. But that is not the point. The point is: Who was he really? And what impact did he have on America?


And his impact has been negative. Welfare programs have entrenched dependent, poverty among millions; the public schools that are run by Democrat teacher unions are failing generation after generation; and Obama-style socialism and health-care – based on the Kennedy model – are seen rightfully as consuming the economic future.


To get beyond the rhetoric, it is instructional to look at the state of Ted Kennedy’s own Massachusetts today. As a result of Kennedy liberalism, Massachusetts has for the last 30 years seen rapid economic decline, a flight of skilled and educated people, a hostility to business, and a poorer and poorer populace separated from the ultra-rich by a wider and wider gap. Massachusetts once was one of the richest places on earth and today it is a continuing disaster. And that is the visible legacy that we should be considering as we ponder the real meaning of Edward Kennedy’s life and times.


Please visit my website at www.nikitas3.com for more. You can print out for free my book, Right Is Right, which explains why only conservatism can maintain our freedom and prosperity.