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The Company You Keep

September 23, 2010 by  

The Company You Keep

Georgia’s 12th Congressional District comprises 220 or so gerrymandered miles of economically and demographically heterogeneous land which includes everything from onion farms to America’s fifth largest port. The person who serves this diverse constituency, noted by the Cook Partisan Voting Index as being D+1 (listing slightly to port), is currently a wealthy trial lawyer named John Barrow.

Barrow himself is a fairly inconsequential fellow. Of his three successful campaigns for the House, two were decided by margins narrower than his shoulders. Pro-abortion group NARAL has given him a 100 percent rating; but he voted against major liberal initiatives like Obamacare and Cap and Trade.

In an effort to maintain his grasp on the good life afforded House members, Barrow horse-trades like the guy in the green eyeshade in a John Wayne movie; swapping votes for Nancy Pelosi for the power to pacify his more conservative constituents during Obama’s periodic assaults on their lives. To put a fine point on it: Barrow is everyone’s pal, but nobody’s friend.

The urbane Barrow is certainly not someone you’d expect to find skulking around the urban alleys of New York City. Indeed, it’s hard to picture the bespectacled Barrow, who’s whiter than Dennis Kucinich singing Conway Twitty tunes in a Branson karaoke bar, leaping out of his limo to hang with the homeboys who call Harlem home. So imagine my surprise when the ethics imbroglio surrounding comically corrupt Charles Rangel of New York’s 15th Congressional District (PVI: D+43 — more liberal than David Paterson’s “girlfriends”) managed to ensnare the pasty-faced Congressman from South Georgia.

For his part, Rangel has — ahem — allegedly committed a list of offenses which stretch from the Apollo Theatre to Augusta National. He has remained near the top of the D.C. heap despite even President Barack Obama reacting to his ethics scandals by suggesting he should “end his career with dignity.” During four decades in Washington, Rangel has salted away quite a pile, and has subsequently spread the wealth to far-flung congressional corners — including Southeast Georgia.

You read that correctly. The putrescence of liberalism extends from 125th Street all the way to the Savannah River. With a nod to The Bard via Charles D. Warner — politics does indeed make strange bedfellows. According to a Tuesday report in the Savannah Morning News, Barrow has been on the receiving end of Rangelian largesse since 2004 and has no intention of ridding himself of the repellent stink of Rangel’s rewards. To date, Barrow has cashed checks from the Regent of Riker’s Island totaling $24,000. And according to Barrow spokesmodel Jane Brodsky, he’s keeping the cash:

Congressman Barrow is not going to make a symbolic gesture based on contributions he received in past election cycles that were spent a long time ago.”

Truth be told, there’s not much point in Barrow dumping Rangel’s tainted treasure. With another nod to The Bard: that spot ain’t comin’ out in the wash. By refusing to divest himself of Rangel’s 24 grand, the supposedly Blue Dog Barrow has cast his lot with the far left of the liberal establishment.

Obama might call this sort of thing a “teachable moment.” Barrow, who is facing opposition from Ray McKinney (who sports an endorsement from the increasingly powerful Tea Party), may be in for a wild ride to November. While Real Clear Politics data suggest Barrow’s seat is safe, there are no polls which indicate an approval rating at or above 50 percent.

In an off-year election in which Democrats not only won’t have the benefit of Obama’s coattails, but would rather skip and go naked than huddle under the President’s hide, Barrow likely needs every nickel. Here’s the rub: when word of Barrow’s canoodling with Rangel gets back to Peach State voters, how much political vigorish will Barrow owe on the loan?

Barrow has played both sides of the fence for long enough to hold on to his seat on the back bench of the House, but has made little headway in terms of noteworthiness, much less notoriety. While he has a sizeable financial edge over McKinney, association with a wire-pulling reprobate like Rangel may cost him a great deal more than a lousy double-dozen large. And it raises fair questions about the Democrats’ direction.

Barrow’s financial fraternization with Rangel is apt allegory for the larger issues surrounding the Democrat Party in 2010. What happened to Pelosi “draining the swamp?” Where is the end of the liberal culture of corruption? And if I hold Barrow up to a 40-watt bulb, can I see where his spine is supposed to be?

According to Brodsky:

"(Barrow) has neither received nor accepted any contributions after allegations of (Rangel’s) ethical impropriety arose."

Barrow the Blue Dog and Rangel the snake — different ends of the same donkey.

Ben Crystal

is a 1993 graduate of Davidson College and has burned the better part of the last two decades getting over the damage done by modern-day higher education. He now lives in Savannah, Ga., where he has hosted an award-winning radio talk show and been featured as a political analyst for television. Currently a principal at Saltymoss Productions—a media company specializing in concept television and campaign production, speechwriting and media strategy—Ben has written numerous articles on the subjects of municipal authoritarianism, the economic fallacy of sin taxes and analyses of congressional abuses of power.

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  • s c

    An old Chinese philosopher says that when you hang around jackasses, it’s just a matter of time before you start stepping in nasty, smelly things. If Rangel is ‘sacrificed’ to protect the solemn ‘honor and dignity’ of the Washington jackasses, maybe Barrow can offer Rangel a job and show him how things are done down south.

    • FreedomFighter

      What is really needed is for conservatives to start putting up the money for the warchests of conservative candidates.

      Now is the time to put some cash infusions into some of the cash straped conservatives warchests, they dont have the Soros, Acorn Demon-rat money machines and big money liberal backing them.

      Lets get the word out, and the Progressive Liberal Communist out of goverment.

      Laus Deo
      Semper Fi

      • eddie47d

        Sure you do – go ask the Koch brothers.

      • guyb

        Nice freedom fighter….. Too bad some fat cat (RICH ) on the side of the average American republican does not step up….

  • FlaJim

    The Blue Dog Dem is just some myth kept alive by lazy journalists and used to describe Dems who are foaming at the mouth – yet.

    The fact remains that by supporting a so-called Blue Dog, a voter is helping out Pelosi, Reid, the boy in the White House, and all their other stinky brethren. Look at ‘Blue Dog’ Stupach in Upper MI who caved and provided the margin needed to pass the health ‘reform’ disaster.

    • Warrior

      A vote for ANY democrap is a vote for ALL progressives. Throw all democraps out. None can be trusted.

      • Dick Gazinia

        A lot of Republicans are no better. No integrity – no votes.

  • Robin from Arcadia, IN

    If Pelosi really was going to drain the swamp, she would be high on that list to go. In reality, the number of people left would be slim. The Dems were really full of a lot of hot air when they were campaigning. They convinced a lot of voters, but anyone who can’t see what is really going on by now is just not looking!

    • marvin

      Robin from Arcadia, IN, when you live on handouts or should i say take from the people that work and give to them that don,t or won,t when you live off the sweat of someone brow you tend to vote for the people that will give you more,free free thank god allmity all is free at last,this is the liberal creed why should i work when my master,s the demacrats will provide for me

  • Dennis

    Support McKinney. Barrow needs to go.

    • Christin


      Georgia you guys know what you have to do… VOTE for McKinney and OUST the “yellow belly blue dog” Demo Barrow. Barrow’s been playing you guys … with his voting and now he’s been caught with Rangel’s bad cash.

      And NewYork, get rid of “milkin’ the system” Rangel the FAT CAT of NYC and CORRUPT DC. He has not one, but 13 Ethics Violations for cryin’ out loud … do you guys have no conscience or self-respect?

      What you DO and who you VOTE for in your STATE effects us ALL.

      • Christin

        PS. I didn’t think Rangel’s $24,000 contribution to Barrow was all that generous or that much money by DC standards, after all, they are all trying to get into the “Billionaires’ Club” (with G. Soros so they can be above the Law Ruling in the NWO and not have to be a common citizen made to follow the law.) But that $24,000 could be used to pay for a job (one persons income) ans is really the TAX PAYER’s money NOT to be thrown around and used as slush funds for each other… GIVE IT BACK, THIEF!

  • libra

    why is it–no notoriety of nancy pelosi’s 2 million dollar plus costs to the usa in 2 years for just her booze(first Class stuff) and snacks as she flies back and forth each week? this is partying on the taxpayer ‘s dime at it’s worst. gov. motors corp is giving 90 million dollars to the campaign.. guess which party will receive that 90 million.. what a joke–a payoff to the political hacks who gave them taxpayer dollars to save their sorry a$$es. they still owe the taxpayers billions. why are they even permitted to make more bribes and obligations? if they came out with their sorry IPO they would have to sell each common share for 135.00 each in order to pay back the taxpayers. what fool in his right mind would buy any of their sorry shares? gov. mtrs new ceo–9 million a year–for what. they have become a permenant dependent on the taxpayer teat. boycott gen. mtrs. vote in nov. i for one am tired of bending over and grabbing my ankles. FIRE ALL OF THEM

    • DaveH

      Boycott GM.

      • http://?? Joe H.

        Did you see the expose on the chrysler employees that were taking their lunch break to drink beer and toke the noble weed?? The camera man walked right up to them as they went running to their cars and went back to work high on presses and what have you!!! Let one of them get hurt on the job while under the influence of booze or pot and they will be the first in line to sue or collect comp!!! I worked with a guy that drank a whole pitcher of beer at lunch and then went back to work on a rapid hit press. Cut off his thunb all except one little piece of flesh holding it on. He sued!!! I never heard whether he won or not, but just the Idea of him suing is rediculous!!

    • Richard Pawley

      A new advertising slogan perhaps: Buy GM and support the Democrats! Uh, no thanks. I’ve owned four GM cars and always got my money’s worth (the Ford plant and union in NJ – now long gone – was so bad that dealers would pay to have cars shipped all the way from Detroit to NY rather than just across the line in “Joisey”. My last GM vehicle is five years old and it has less than 20,000 miles on it because I still drive my 17 year old Japanese vehicle that GM sold. To bad they could not survive without marrying the government. By the way, using government and Enron-style accounting techniques they will tell you they have paid back the taxpayer. Wish I could borrow 40 million and pay it back the same way.

  • http://yahoo Dr. Doom

    I wish we could throw all of them out and start over fresh and with no PAC’s allowed inside the beltway. Let’s put the best America has to offer in Congress, so they can put the best on the Supreme Court. Don’t forget who put 2 liberal unamerican females on the high court, so far in his adminisration!!! We have a chance to make a difference in Nov. It may be our last chance as a country for we have just about as many voters who are either, illegals, Marxists/progressives, entitled/welfare recepients, racists or just plain stupid people as we do people who work every day, honor this counry, God fearing, morally upright and family oriented, who want to see our America back to where it should be!!! “Real” change is coming soon, I hope you’re ready!!!

  • marvin

    here is my thinking you work for me obama and pelosie and reid and all in goverment you can not hear me when i say no don,t do that you can not hear me when i say this is what i want you can not see me when i am an american citizen,saying no, but you can hear the gay people,and you can hear the one,s with there hand out wanting what is not theirs,you can hear the illegal undocumented criminals when they demand rights they do not have,you refuse to hear me when i say enforce the laws of the land on immigration ,you like judus have sold your soul for a few pieces of silver and you want more power,to you i say god is the final judge, but in nov we the people will judge you and find you wanting,you can turn your back on us but is a good thing just makes it better to put our foot in your ass and kick you to the curb,any vote for a liberal agenda is one to menny,when you refuse to enforce all laws as writen not as you think they sould read and that goes for the constitution ,just because obama can leave out the creator when reading part of the constution or bill of right still don,t make it right,no one should be allowed to go on tv and tell a bear face lie goverment motors about having paid all the money back from tarp then give millions to the same people that gave them the tarp money and knowing it was all a lie need be impeached,not paygo but pay me [pelosie]as you go

  • ABinGA

    Need to get rid of the likes of Barrow and Sanford Bishop

  • marvin

    as for rangel he like hasting in fla are crooks and old max waters only in america well not just here, where a crook can be impeached and found guilty like hastings and be voted to congress an,t it great,send the fox,s back to guard the hen house,then you wonder where all your chicken have gone,and old fox rangel still having the chicken in mouth,saying i am not a crook sorry that was tricke dick nixon but you get the point,don,t tell me to step down my people will vote for me,even if i am found guilty ,for they love the pork i give them but hell i guess i am just a racist or just to blind to see the truth

  • Chaz D

    Take a hint – Barrow is a trial lawyer – one of those John Edwards types with no principles other than “ME FIRST”. I would be inclined to support a constitutional amendment that bars anybody with a law degree from running for public office, other than a judge position. Truck drivers and carpenters would do a better job in Washington than the slimey, self-serving, law school-edcuated weasels that are in there now. The bills they write are often hundreds of pages thick, but could be written in few pages so that people could readily understand what will result from its passage.

    Another worthwhile constitutional amendment would be to require every bill to stand on its own – no more “riders”.. Riders are just bad bills that get attached to good bills becasue there would be no other way the sorry libtards could get them through except to conceal them in a bill that’s worthy of approval. When such bills are rejected because of a stinky rider, the libtards come out and broadcast that the conservatives voted against a good bill and turn the public against them. None of the mainstream media outlets will tell the public why the bill wasn’t passed, and the conservative legislators seldom get any coverage when they try to explain why they voted the way they did. Making every bill stand on its own would solve this problem. If the voters could get educated on this subject, we could stop most if not all the bad, pork-laden legislation that goes to the White House. As someone said, it’s a good day when NOTHING gets done in Washington.

  • ABinGA

    Chaz D-Agreed. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington comes to mind.

    • libertytrain

      And just where is Jimmy Stewart when we need him most —-

      • http://?? Joe H.

        A little off subject, but I just saw on Fox that the tower they are building at ground zero is at 31 stories and they are adding about one floor a week!!! 73 more floors to go!! God Bless Them ALL!!!

        • libertytrain

          I didn’t see that – thanks for the info.

  • http://gmail i41

    What company does all democrats keep as close friends and leaders.. Marxists, anti-Americans,solialists, muslims, crimminals, communists,global crap beleivers, cap and trade idoits,and just crimminals of all types and plain thugs. That is The Marxist Deomcrat Communist Party and their entrance points needed to become a party member with bonus points for hiding killing and drug use of peddling.

    • BrotherPatriot

      Obviously you can’t classify ALL of them in the same bracket…however, the ones in power & that have been in power along with the old school republican’s…definitely can be classified into your descriptive bracket…i41.

      You basically are speaking about the NWO there…interesting how they are using the Islamic movement. Most likely using each other as tools and once were gone…will via for power after.

  • guyb

    I hope all of America remembers,Obama ran on change…. Lets give him some change in 2012 and some help to change this NOV…..

    • Viktor Leben

      Yeah ! I agree ! Obama for Prez 2012 and re-elect the Democrats !

      Just joking. But what if this happens ? How will you adjust guyb ?

  • http://PersonalLibertyAlerts John Despard

    Unless you live in this district you should not be telling people whom to vote for. Basically, while it doesn’t make a lot of difference in many cases all poor people should be supporting democrats in November. It has been democrats like FDR, JFK, and LBJ who stood up at least somewhat for us lower 98% of the country. The few bones we have gotten for poor people, minimum wage laws, forty hour weeks, social security, medicare, child labor reform, etc. have come from democrats and progressives in congress and the White House. Republicans, Libertarians and the like think we should be working and slaving for everything we get while they get tax deductions for their political donations, advertising costs, other business costs, etc. while we pay the outrageous prices for everything that allows every two bit journeyman athlete or mediocre actress, or singer, etc. with a good agent to be a millionaire let alone the obscene salaries and profits paid to corporate executives and shareholders. While I don’t think socialism or communism is the answer to our economic difficulties neither is the greed allowed by unbridled capitalism. There are enough entrepreneurs in society that the government could enact a “maximum wage” and a “maximum profit level” for doing business with the government. It has been said “Money = Power” and “The US President is the most powerful man in the world”. Following the logic in these two statements the President should be the richest man in the world. Perhaps his salary should serve as a maximum wage or profit level for doing business with the government. No contracts, bailouts, special tax breaks, etc. should go to any organization or corporation, etc that enriches any one person more than the salary of the President in one year. Would athletes, entertainers, CEOs etc. quit and drive trucks or something for a living if they only made $400,000 a year rather than millions? Would Bill Gates or Warren Buffett simply stop doing business if their profits and salaries were limited to $400,000 a year if they wanted government breaks or contracts, etc? Unbridled capitalism is simply going to lead eventually to the rich squeezing the poor so much that we will have to revolt in order to survive. The unbridled greed of Greece, Rome, Britain, France, Russia, China, etc. have always led to revolutions or overthrows. Why should America be any different?

  • XQsME

    Without a revolution

    Americans are history!

    Invitations will not be sent?


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