Benny's World

Sunday, August 06, 2006

I Think I Must Have Grown Some Cajones

This past Friday, I was surfin' the Net for articles about John Edwards. I do this for 2 reasons: one, often I am looking for news for the JRE Buzz. But secondly, there are times when I believe there are disceptive posts, in which the poster may not have her/his facts straight about JRE, or some are just downright wrong, I will post a comment, or debunk, as we in the blogosphere say. Elizabeth Edwards spoke recently in Iowa about respect and that means telling the truth. She added that her grandmother used to say about untruthiness, "The intent to decieve is the same as a lie. "

I stumbled across Crazy Politico's blog, as I had seen the blogger, Bob, post some untruths about JRE on the Wake-up Wal-Mart blog. I decided to visit his blog. At first I thought he was a moderate in his views, so I decided to post something there concerning the topic of John Edwards speaking at the Pittsburgh rally. Bob was essentially saying that he thought JRE was a hypocrite by having Wal-Mart stock and allowing the 2004 campaign folks to shop there if he was so against Wal-Mart's business practices of low wages, purposely not employing folks enough hours to make them eligible for health care, but yet, the workers worked more than part-time, and how taxpayers had to pick up their healthcare tabs by emergency room visits for those who could not afford to pay, or medicaid for those not eligible for medicare.

It was later that I read that JRE had sold his stock in Wal-Mart, but even if he hadn't and it was through trust funds someone else managed for him, I wouldn't have cared. Why? Here is what I wrote:
Well, I have Wal-Mart stock too via a mutual fund. But I suppose in the Republican world there is or should not be such a thing as shareholder activism. If I had been in Pittsburgh, I would have been cheering Senator Edwards on. He has a right to challenge Wal-Mart and stand up for many who cannot get a job somewhere else, in which many folks have become the working poor as a result of layoffs at industrial plants in big and smaller communities. Wal-Mart needs to start treating its workers with the dignity that Sam Walton had for them when he was alive. After he died, the children didn't want to work at Wal-Mart, and certainly, Helen Walton was in no position to head the company either. Thus, the ones in high management who hijacked the company have been playing games with their employees for years and there have been a number of lawsuits filed against them on work discrimination.

Wal-Mart relies on the state's Medicaid programs as health care; that's big rip-off to the taxpayer, who also shops at Wal-mart. Wal-mart needs to pony up for benes to the worker. Better yet, universal health care, but until this country wakes up and smells the health care crisis coffee, employees in service organizations need to have the right to unionize and bargin for better wages and benefits. After all, China made Wal-Mart to allow unions in their country. Wal-Mart needs to step up and allow it in the US too."
Here was the response of Ted, one of the regular bloggers:
Trust me largebill, if Bennyboy had a clue, he wouldn't even post his diatribe here. Who does he think he is appealing to??

The Limo Liberals still have the black vote and if they ever lose it, they are DONE!!!! Without the black vote, they are history. Bennyboy and those like him just plant their "garbage" on any site they find, to promote more garbage.

John Edwards is just a guy with a hairdo and a shyster lawyer. People like him are the reason there are lawyer jokes. Bennyboy is the reason there are moron jokes.

Yes Benny, this is a personal attack but you matching wits with me is like drawing on Wyatt Earp with a squirt gun. Get over it.

You are nothing more than a liberal with an agenda which is more dangerous than a Hells Angel with an Attitude. (sans Ted Nugent)

Get over yourself and don't come back here again! You are too stupid to be someone allowed to vote - I hope!!!!
Now, I'm certain Ted thought I was a guy a neighborhood bar, that he had punched me in the nose, and threw me out.

Just so you all know the context, BW readers, my spouse votes for Republicans most of the time (except for Alan Keyes, who really was incompetent to be our national Senator from Illinois), but he wishes the Republican Party was more like the days when it didn't spend so much money. He felt that the Democratic Party left him during the late 1970's, and was a Reagan Democrat who switched over in 1984. So, I know what it's like to be Maria Shriver, but also I believe love doesn't know a political party either.

Not so fast, Ted. So here's what I blogged back:
CP Readers,

Like Karl Rove and those at, Ted has chosen to attack me and Senator Edwards on a personal level because of fear that Senator Edwards is making a correct stance about Wal-Mart's poor business practices. I think it's unfortunate that Ted has to resort to calling people he disagrees with "stupid" and telling me "not to return" when it's not even his own blog. I'm not intimidated by his comments, especially since he knows nothing about me or my politics. But I'll provide one tip: I am a blue moderate, and I happen to live in Bob's state.

Where my error was is that is a conservative blog--I didn't read the blogroll very carefully.

Incidentally, my spouse is a conservative, but he doesn't call me stupid for my support for many stances which concur with Senator Edwards's views."
So even though I physically don't have "balls" (as blogger Marc Canter asked JRE about political will at Gnomedex), I think I must have grown some blogger ones to be bold enough to enter that neighborhood, and took the high road in doing so, just as JRE would do.

Crazy Bob and Ted and whoever at Crazy Politico's Rantings, here's what I look like. And the man you see to my right has the backbone and courage this country needs in our next leader. He and His Wife (seen below, with me and Iowa blogger/bud Jackie R) inspire me every single day to be a good patriot and stand up for what I believe in: One America in which a government that works best for all people.

Update: the discourse on Crazy Politico turned civil last night. We'll see how it progresses.

Tags: John Edwards, Wal-Mart, tour, health care, truth, debunking, benny's world, conservative blogs, conviction, backbone, deception


  • While Ted's response was somewhat out of line, the truth is, Edwards DID NOT own the stock in a mutual fund, at least according to 6 years worth of Senate Financial disclosures. He owned the stock, and even after placed in a trust, actively traded it.

    Anyone who's operated a trust knows that JRE could very easily, in his written instructions to the executor explicitely forbidden the purchase of Wal-Mart stock. Evidently that didn't happen, since in those six years his Wal-Mart portfolio jumped from under 10K to somewhere between 50 and 100,000 dollars (again, from his own filings.).

    And, if as you posted "a few years ago", he'd sold his Wal-Mart stock, you'd think he'd also have instructed his campaign staff to not shop there. Yet in 2004 they did buy office supplies at Wal-Mart.

    BTW, his termination disclosure, the final one filed upon leaving the Senate, in Jan 2005, shows he still owned Wal-Mart stock.

    By Blogger Crazy Politico, at 7:59 PM  

  • Hi Bob,

    Thanks for stopping by.

    Edwards no longer shops there, and he doesn't own stock. Thus, he's being true to his speech and cause. Perhaps he is showing some social responsibility by not having investments there now. Any investor has the right to divest if they wish. In my case, which one of my mutual funds does include Wal-Mart (I wish it didn't, but I cannot afford to invest in anything but mutual funds via my employer, the State), I still think it is my right to shareholder activism, which is to tell Wal-Mart, quit playing games, allow workers to organize where they can, just as they did in China twice in the past week, and provide better benes.

    Feel free to drop by again, Bob. I noted that we are having civil discourse on your blog, which is all I wanted in the first place. I also blog at JREG, which is mainly a progressive blog, but there is a Republican who blogs there because the discourse is civil and she's pretty knowledgeable about legislation. BTW, she also lives in Illinois, and occasionally we talk by land line.


    By Blogger benny06, at 6:28 AM  

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