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Jimmy Carterís Kennedy Problem
Townhall.com ^ | October 7, 2010 | Paul Kengor

Posted on 10/07/2010 7:35:18 AM PDT by Kaslin

I recently wrote about , where I objected to the former president’s rather conceited claim of “superior” ex-presidential service, as measured (by himself) against other ex-presidents.

Yet, there’s an important area where I’d like to defend President Carter. Carter hasn’t had many defenders on this score, given that he dared to criticize a political saint to Democrats, the late senator Ted Kennedy.

In recent comments to CBS’s Leslie Stahl, Carter blasted Kennedy, blaming him for the Carter administration’s inability to pass a national “health plan.” Carter described Kennedy as “irresponsible and abusive.” “The fact is that we would have had comprehensive health care now,” Carter told Stahl, “had it not been for Ted Kennedy’s deliberately blocking the legislation that I proposed in 1978 or ‘79…. It was his fault. Ted Kennedy killed the bill.”

When Stahl asked Carter if he felt Kennedy did this “just to spite you,” Carter didn’t equivocate: “That’s the implication. He did not want to see me have a major success in that realm of American life.”

Carter pointed to political motivations by Kennedy: “I felt like he went after me. I was the incumbent president…. He decided that he was going to replace me as a Democratic president.”

I understand Carter’s point, and his suspicions. In fact, this wasn’t the only realm where Kennedy opposed Carter. The rest of the story is far more disturbing.

According to Vasiliy Mitrokhin, a KGB official and senior Soviet archivist who defected from Russia in 1992, bringing with him a huge cache of documents, Kennedy went after Carter on more than healthcare.

Specifically, on March 5, 1980, Kennedy reached out to Soviet dictator Leonid Brezhnev, via a message personally delivered in Moscow by Kennedy’s close friend and confidante, John Tunney, the former Democratic senator from California. According to Mitrokhin, Tunney was there “to relay [Kennedy’s] ideas on ways to lessen international tension to the Soviet leadership.”

What tensions? That’s the shocker: In Mitrokhin’s account, Kennedy, amazingly, blamed the escalation in Cold War tensions not on the Soviets but on Jimmy Carter. Mind you, this was mere weeks after the Soviets had invaded Afghanistan, their first direct military intervention outside the Warsaw Pact since World War II.

“[T]he Carter administration was trying to distort the peace-loving ideas behind Brezhnev’s proposals,” argued Kennedy, in Mitrokhin’s words, with “the atmosphere of tension and hostility ... being fuelled by Carter.” The Carter White House was “feeding public opinion with nonsense about ‘the Soviet military threat’ and Soviet ambitions for military expansion.”

Yes, the Massachusetts senator had somehow concluded that Jimmy Carter was guilty of belligerence and that Leonid Brezhnev was committed to peace, including a peaceful settlement in Afghanistan—which the Red Army had just invaded and would bomb mercilessly for a decade. Ted Kennedy ensured that the Soviets heard his unique conclusion, delivered by a personal liaison.

The KGB itself concluded that some of Kennedy’s “proposals are acceptable to us … as they contradict the line taken by Carter and other politicians.”

What’s so especially remarkable about this incident is that it occurred precisely the time that Kennedy was challenging Carter for the Democratic presidential nomination. More so, Carter was far and away the weakest, most naïve of our presidents when it came to the Cold War. He trusted the communists to an unhealthy degree.

That fatal mistrust is best captured by the June 1979 photo of President Carter kissing Soviet dictator Leonid Brezhnev at the Vienna Summit. (See the photo on the cover of my latest book.) Six months after that kiss, Brezhnev betrayed the devout Christian from Plains, Georgia, sending his Red Army into Afghanistan. Carter got the awful news as he was celebrating Christmas with his family in the White House.

Only the most peculiar observer would consider blaming the escalation in Cold War tensions on Jimmy Carter rather than the Soviets.

Behold, one such observer was Senator Ted Kennedy. And Kennedy wasn’t shy about letting the Soviets know his feelings—right smack in the middle of the Democratic presidential primaries.

Personally, I’m not surprised by this at all. Kennedy did a similar thing to Ronald Reagan in May 1983. (Click here.) Of course, Reagan was a Republican; Carter was Kennedy’s own political flesh and blood.

Alas, it’s interesting that the media now, today, is giving attention to a Carter-Kennedy spat over government healthcare, whereas there was an even deeper, more troubling rift over foreign policy. Healthcare is one thing, but reaching out to the Soviet leadership at the height of the Cold War—and during a heated election campaign—is something else entirely.

If President Carter still feels spited by Ted Kennedy, he has good reason.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 10/07/2010 7:35:20 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Insane formatting you have there.


2 posted on 10/07/2010 7:38:49 AM PDT by Nonstatist
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To: Nonstatist

Does anyone else remember the Carter plan for national health insurance? I don’t remember that subject being a major issue at all while Carter was president. Is he now trying to score political points against a dead Kennedy? Is Carter doing revisionist history to paint himself in the best possible light? Does Carter realize that he has gone down in history as an insignificant weak president, not unlike Franklin Pierce or Chester Arthur or Benjamin Harrison????


3 posted on 10/07/2010 7:41:52 AM PDT by Dilbert San Diego
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To: Kaslin

A good reason for digging up Kennedy’s body and throwing it in the nearest river. That or opening the casket and driving a stake through the heart of the cadaver to make sure he doesn’t rise from the dead.


4 posted on 10/07/2010 7:42:18 AM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: Nonstatist
Jimmah Cahtah is delusional.
There was no possibility of a national health care bill being passed in 1979 (the year he suggests Kennedy blocked his initiative.)
Cahtah was weak, fumbling and an admitted failure. He must have dreamed this story.
5 posted on 10/07/2010 7:43:42 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Impeachment !)
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To: Kaslin
"If President Carter still feels spited by Ted Kennedy, he has good reason."

Of course he has good reason. Nobody really cares though. Ted Kennedy was evil. Jimmy Carter was incompetent and naive to the point of being traitorous. Ted Kennedy burns in hell. Jimmy Carter will simply go into oblivion.

6 posted on 10/07/2010 7:43:51 AM PDT by Artemis Webb
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To: Kaslin

Well, if all this is true, maybe Teddy did do one good thing while he drank away his time here on earth.


7 posted on 10/07/2010 7:46:12 AM PDT by econjack (Some people are as dumb as soup.)
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To: Kaslin

I am so impressed the principled, President Jimmy Carter, lacked the courage to attack Kennedy until he was sure that he was well interred and the seal on the grave was hard. Such courage and forthright honesty seems to be the Hallmark of the Progressives...


8 posted on 10/07/2010 7:47:35 AM PDT by Steamburg (The contents of your wallet is the only language Politicians understand.)
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To: RobbyS
A good reason for digging up Kennedy’s body and throwing it in the nearest river.

Throw it in Chappaquiddick - only appropriate!

9 posted on 10/07/2010 7:48:45 AM PDT by The Sons of Liberty (Psalm 109:8 Let his days be few and let another take his office. - Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin)
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To: Nonstatist
I know, I noticed it right right away after I posted it and asked the Admin moderator to remove the article end then posted the article again. What happened was I forgot to close the link after this President Carter’s “superiority” complex And didn't realize it until it was to late
10 posted on 10/07/2010 7:51:01 AM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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To: Dilbert San Diego

I don’t remember it either


11 posted on 10/07/2010 7:52:08 AM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

That’s sort of the point of the article. The health care issue was, if you’ll excuse the pun. peanuts compared to Kennedy’s perfidy with the Soviets when they invaded Afghanistan.


12 posted on 10/07/2010 7:52:42 AM PDT by Cyber Liberty (I am Derek Fenton! (me) Enjoying freedom ourselves requires tolerating it for others. (Jedidah))
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To: Dilbert San Diego

These folks weem to think there is something on health care - back in the day - Carter and all the other presidents.

From
http://www.ontheissues.org/Jimmy_Carter.htm

Pushed national health-insurance bill. (Dec 2000)
Liberal on National Health Insurance. (Jan 1997)
Supports national health insurance. (Oct 1976)
Supports more funding for education & research. (Oct 1976)

Specifically-
Supports national health insurance:
Let me outline for you some of the goals of the next administration in the area of health [insurance]:
We must have a comprehensive program of national health insurance.
We must have government reorganization that will end the bureaucratic fragmentation that now frustrates any hope for a rational and effective national health care policy.
We must encourage alternative delivery systems such as HMOs and rural group practices.
We must clean up the disgraceful Medicaid scandals.
Source: Public Health speech, in “Good As Its People,” p. 231-33 Oct 19, 1976

SO ya, fraud has been an issue for Medicare since before 1976. Politicians (both sides) have done soooo well by us, eh?


13 posted on 10/07/2010 7:54:41 AM PDT by ASOC (What are you doing now that Mexico has become OUR Chechnya?)
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To: Cyber Liberty
I remember Ted stumping around Iowa when he was trying to knock off Jimmah. A national health care proposal was not in the news at the time.
14 posted on 10/07/2010 7:54:58 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Impeachment !)
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To: Kaslin
Still remember the convention where Carter was nominated to run for a second term.

Kennedy and Carter had run primary campaigns that slammed each other and built a lot of resentment and hostility between the two.

When it became obvious that Kennedy was not going to win the nomination, (A great big "Thank You" to Mary Jo) a Carter representative approached Kennedy about throwing his support to and fully getting behind Carter.

Kennedy was his usually narcissistic self and refused.

Then at the convention, several party big wigs approached Kennedy in a "For the good of the party" plea and Kennedy relented.

Then when the final vote tally was made and the balloons and confetti were falling, Kennedy came on to the stage and grudgingly shook hands with Carter. Then Kennedy proceeded to parade around the stage waving to everyone totally ignoring Carter who pathetically chased after him to try to get him to raise their hands together in a moment of unity, friendship and triumph.

A sitting President with an unresolved, 10 month long hostage situation in a formerly friendly Iran, gas lines, hyper-inflation and recession was reduced to fawning over a womanizing drunkard in front of the voters of America.

And they couldn't get to the polls fast enough to correct their mistake of four years earlier.

15 posted on 10/07/2010 7:55:36 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Kennedys: Can't skipper a boat, Can't drive, Can't ski, Can't fly. But they KNOW what's best!)
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To: Dilbert San Diego
Does anyone else remember the Carter plan for national health insurance? I don’t remember that subject being a major issue at all while Carter was president.

Newsweek Magazine, May 22, 1979. Fat Teddy pushing his plan over the Peanut's plan.

16 posted on 10/07/2010 7:55:49 AM PDT by Ditto (Nov 2, 2010 -- Time to Clean House.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

I don’t recall it either, but I was not as avid a spectator of this stuff back then.


17 posted on 10/07/2010 7:58:32 AM PDT by Cyber Liberty (I am Derek Fenton! (me) Enjoying freedom ourselves requires tolerating it for others. (Jedidah))
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To: Kaslin

Looks like Jimmah gets the scarlet letter(s)...


18 posted on 10/07/2010 8:11:20 AM PDT by bigbob
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To: Dilbert San Diego
Does Carter realize that he has gone down in history as an insignificant weak president

He probably looks with pride on the damage he did to the nuclear power industry, the Panama Canal, the birth of the financial crisis we are in, etc.

I will always remember the quote from Carter's mother, Miss Lillian: "I should have remained a virgin."

(Okay, brother Billy helped inspire that sentiment...)

19 posted on 10/07/2010 8:11:31 AM PDT by Calvin Locke
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To: Cyber Liberty
Kennedy’s perfidy with the Soviets...

His parents were big on German Socialist Workers Party and Adolph Hitler.

So much so, even FDR felt compelled to recall him [Joe, Sr.] from the "Court of St. James".

Most of the Kennedys are plutocrats. They have to buy elections nowadays.

20 posted on 10/07/2010 8:19:11 AM PDT by Calvin Locke
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To: Cyber Liberty
perfidy with the Soviets when they invaded Afghanistan.

In light of today's situation, I often wonder if we should not have JOINED THE SOVIETS and bombed Afghanistan into one big, hard-surfaced parking lot.

21 posted on 10/07/2010 8:23:33 AM PDT by Huebolt (It's not over until there is not ONE DEMOCRAT HOLDING OFFICE ANYWHERE. Not even a dog catcher!)
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To: Huebolt

You may be on to something.


22 posted on 10/07/2010 8:27:38 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Impeachment !)
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To: Kaslin
I don’t remember it either

There were some lesser known conservative sources (AAPS - American Association of Physicians and Surgeons most likely) that had an inside track on some of the goings on at the Carter WH at the time, and there was serious talk of developing a national health insurance plan.

I was in college at the time and my dad who was then and is now still a physician advised me against considering entering the formal practice of medicine for this reason, although I was well-into my pre-med studies.

It informed me enough back then to cause me to take my career in a different direction as a result. And for that I am thankful to this day.

FReegards!


23 posted on 10/07/2010 8:32:27 AM PDT by Agamemnon (Darwinism is the glue that holds liberalism together)
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To: Kaslin

Carter engineered Afghanistan to be the Soviet’s Vietnam. It worked. It’s the one smart thing he did for the short term, but he did end up arming our current enemy.


24 posted on 10/07/2010 8:33:34 AM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: Kaslin
The only time I switched my registration to Dem was to vote against Ted Kennedy in the presidential primary.

The man was evil.

Carter is insane.

Both poster boys for the Dem party.

25 posted on 10/07/2010 8:33:51 AM PDT by ohioWfan (Proud Mom of a Bronze Star recipient!)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
In light of today's situation, I often wonder if we should not have JOINED THE SOVIETS and bombed Afghanistan into one big, hard-surfaced parking lot.

If we knew muzlims like they knew muzlims, Oh, Oh, Oh what a show!

26 posted on 10/07/2010 8:36:53 AM PDT by Huebolt (It's not over until there is not ONE DEMOCRAT HOLDING OFFICE ANYWHERE. Not even a dog catcher!)
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To: Dilbert San Diego
Is Carter doing revisionist history to paint himself in the best possible light? Does Carter realize that he has gone down in history as an insignificant weak president, not unlike Franklin Pierce or Chester Arthur or Benjamin Harrison????

Yes to both. Thats why he has spent the last 30 years self agrandazing himself and writing 30 books nobody has read. His shame and humiliation is profound .

27 posted on 10/07/2010 9:08:14 AM PDT by Nonstatist
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To: RobbyS; SpinnerWebb
A good reason for digging up Kennedy’s body and throwing it in the nearest river. That or opening the casket and driving a stake through the heart of the cadaver to make sure he doesn’t rise from the dead.

Hey, give Teddy a break, he's doing his best to change.

Good Lord, the man has been alcohol free for over a year now and you're still giving him crap.

28 posted on 10/07/2010 9:13:21 AM PDT by tx_eggman (Liberalism is only possible in that moment when a man chooses Barabas over Christ.)
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To: tx_eggman
Hey, give Teddy a break, he's doing his best to change. Good Lord, the man has been alcohol free for over a year now and you're still giving him crap.

I'm just glad they didn't decide to cremate him


The fire would still be burning

29 posted on 10/07/2010 9:16:07 AM PDT by Cowman (How can the IRS seize property without a warrant if the 4th amendment still stands?)
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To: Kaslin

just a little peek behind the curtain of the no-holds barred cage match that is the Democrat Party


30 posted on 10/07/2010 9:45:43 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Kaslin
Somehow, Jimmy Carter has achieved a reputation for being some sort of mild-mannered, well meaning, Christian-spirited, bumbling, "nice-guy," when the truth of the matter seems to be that he was a petty, vindictive, and mean-spirited super-partisan Son-of-a-Beach who would leave no stone unturned to settle a score with a political opponent or any one else whom he thought had "crossed" him in any way.

His record as the incompetent (and BTW, very corrupt)machine-politician Governor of Georgia shows this quite clearly. He is far from forgotten in that state! As someone who has worked along side him on a Habitat Project, I can also affirm he sure ain't no kind a carpenter, neither!

31 posted on 10/07/2010 10:36:29 AM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Revive The Poll Tax and Literacy Requirement for voter registration.)
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To: antiRepublicrat
he did end up arming our current enemy.

And the silly SOB also made sure that the Ayatollah Homeini took over Iran from our staunch ally, the Shah. This in turn, kicked off the wave of terror we are now experiencing. Jimmy considered the Ayatollah a "great and holy man," sort of a John Wesley in funny clothes!

32 posted on 10/07/2010 10:40:24 AM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Revive The Poll Tax and Literacy Requirement for voter registration.)
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To: antiRepublicrat
Carter engineered Afghanistan to be the Soviet’s Vietnam. It worked. It’s the one smart thing he did for the short term, but he did end up arming our current enemy.

Carter "engineered" no such thing. Soviets invaded Afghanistan using roads which had been constructed by the US Army Corps of Engineers. In truth all it was was another US foreign aid boondoggle allowed to be co-opted by aggressive Soviet hegemony.

Carter didn't plan a Soviet-style Vietnam, at all. The Mujaheddin were armed by Reagan, and it was Reagan's foreign policy that caused the Soviets to get bogged down in a Vietnam style body bag count.

You give Carter foreign policy credit he does not deserve. Whether in Afghanistan or in Nicaragua with the Sandinistas, Carter's foreign policy per Bob Beckel and Zbigniew Brzezinski was crafted only to advance the Soviet sphere of influence

And now we get to see Brzezinski's stupid history challenged "Lincoln is my favorite Founding father" daughter on Morning Jackass -- uh -- Morning Joe, and watch Beckel get his head handed to him all the time on Hannity.

FReegards!


33 posted on 10/07/2010 1:48:15 PM PDT by Agamemnon (Darwinism is the glue that holds liberalism together)
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To: tx_eggman

As I am currently reading the books of Kings in the Old Testament, Teddy is looking better every day. Man, there were some bad dudes among these guys. And women who make Nancy —or even Lady McBeth—seem benign.


34 posted on 10/07/2010 7:16:40 PM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RobbyS
As I am currently reading the books of Kings in the Old Testament, Teddy is looking better every day.

David hath slain his tens of thousands, and Kennedy his millions.

FReegards!


35 posted on 10/08/2010 9:52:09 AM PDT by Agamemnon (Darwinism is the glue that holds liberalism together)
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To: Agamemnon

Teddy comes NOWHERE near David. Judah had good kings and bad. and Teddy is more like the bad ones.


36 posted on 10/08/2010 10:46:35 AM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RobbyS
Teddy comes NOWHERE near David. Judah had good kings and bad. and Teddy is more like the bad ones.

If all you are possibly looking at is Kennedy vis a vis Kopchne and David vis a vis Uriah and David vis a vis Goliath, you could by that flimsy comparison say that David was twice as deadly as Kennedy.

Now Goliath was a direct kill by David and Kopechne was a direct kill by Kennedy. Uriah was an indirect kill by David as were others whose deaths David's soldiers felled in battle.

I believe if you counted up the number of aborted children in the US since 1973 (~50MM) whose killing was politically and legislatively promoted by Kennedy (partial birth-D&X, and D&C) the man is indirectly responsible for the deaths of 50 MM children.

By that measure Kennedy clearly outpaces David.

Of course, so is every other politician indirectly responsible who promotes and facilitates abortion.

Did you ever stop to think about the fact that we have been governed by so many murderers for almost 40 years?

In worldly wise America the Holocaust of the Unborn makes Mao and Hitler look like pikers by comparison.

FReegards!


37 posted on 10/08/2010 12:05:49 PM PDT by Agamemnon (Darwinism is the glue that holds liberalism together)
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