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Biden is a "Moderate" on Crime Issues?

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The Chicago Tribune on Biden:

He has proven to be a reliable moderate on crime issues--particularly where narcotics are concerned--and was a principal author of the 1994 crime bill which sought to put 100,000 more police officers on the streets through a federal grant program. That bill also expanded the reach of the federal death penalty.

Um, Biden coined the term "drug czar" and created ONDCP, the propaganda wing of the federal drug war. He tried to one-up the Republican anti-drug plan by calling for larger foreign drug war investments. He authored the RAVE Act to allow federal prosecution of property owners who fail to successfully prevent drug use. He championed research into biological warfare techniques to eradicate South American drug cultivation, even after experts said it was way too dangerous to even consider. He was last seen proposing ridiculous drug war legislation only a month ago. Really, the list just goes on and on.

So no, Joe Biden is not a "moderate" when it comes to crime issues. His hard-line authoritarian record speaks for itself, runs out of breath, and then speaks for itself some more. To call him a "moderate" is just ignorant and wrong, to the point of utterly trivializing the word and conjuring a wretched spectacle of what it would take to earn a more fitting description of his extensive jail-mongering credentials.

I can only assume this profound mischaracterization of Biden's record was arrived at through the tired assumption that democrats are "soft" on crime, republicans are "tough," and therefore "moderates" are democrats who support harsh laws. Joe Biden is exactly the reason such stereotypes should be avoided by responsible journalists.

(This blog post was published by's lobbying arm, the Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also shares the cost of maintaining this web site. DRCNet Foundation takes no positions on candidates for public office, in compliance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and does not pay for reporting that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as doing so.)

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Reliable Moderates

The Chicago Tribune’s phrase: “a reliable moderate on crime issues—particularly where narcotics are concerned” –in any context is a loaded piece of political propaganda.

According to the political psychologists, using the term “crime issues” in an election campaign often plays in the minds of conservative white voters as “crime issues as they apply to minorities living in the inner cities.”   Thus racists and hardliners will identify with and push for a “tough on crime” approach, a code term they understand to mean a race-motivated police crackdown.

In this case, I think the Chicago Tribune’s outright bogus claim about Biden’s unfortunate drug warrior past is meant to create a state of confusion among black and Latino voters in those communities where the drug war commandos focus a disproportionate amount of their attention compared to white communities.  Likewise, the article alienates the tough-on-crime crowd, but they’re unlikely to vote for an Obama-Biden ticket in any event.

What the propaganda signifies, if anything, may be a subliminal recognition that the drug war is increasingly less popular with Democrats.  If so, then the drug reform message is finally getting through.


My opinion

I've never met him and have no personal animosity towards him. I've followed and written about his positions for the past ten years and he's very bad on crime issues, in my opinion. I'll continue to state that. He might be the only Democrat I could not in good conscience support.


In this context, "moderate" means that he is less liberal than the average Dem. McCain was chosen, in part, because he was seen as a moderate Republican. It would have been less trouble for both Obama and McCain if they had just chosen each other as running mates. The end result will be pretty much the same either way.


I always cringe when I hear the term moderate in any kind of policital context. What exactly is moderate? Moderate as compared to what? It's really gives no point of reference to make that statement from to say that you are Moderate is, nothing really, just a term people like to use to avoid the ugly term "liberal".

But I like the comment above that suggest Obama and Mccain should have just chosen each other, partisan politics is funny in the end nothing changes just the guy in the sitting the high chair,

pass me a bibb and some creamed carrots Obama.


There is little truth in politics.McCain is qualified to be President because he spent five years in a cell? Obama claims to be an African-American, disavowing or at least minimizing his biracial parentage?
Obama, McCain, are cut from the same purple cloth. Today, McCain one-upped Obama by choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate. Single issue feminists will come running to give her support. Once again the voices of reason will succumb to the intolerance of power sought. Even if Obama is elected (and the chances seem to be going downhill), we are faced with the choice of the lesser of two evils. The destruction of the individual's freedom is the real prize in this contest. There is no safe haven for liberty.

Biden = Huge Drug War Whore!

Biden belongs in prison... not in a place of power or prominence!

Biden is the perfect example of the kind of scumbag most liarticians become while seeking political power & influence!
Perfectly willing to commit constitutional crimes against the people & country he's sworn to protect.

'Change' my ass! Dictator obama & the demonrats have been spewing forth the same circular arguments and rhetoric for decades. Gotta save the children and all... we'll need their slave labor later to pay for the ignorance & sins of the 2 previous generations!

Time to put an end to the 2 Parties ''Duomockery' system... Vote Libertarian!

Billy B. Blunt
Tacoma, WA

Truth is treason in the kingdom of lies!
Just say No... to Gods & Gov'ts!

I hope

Scott, I hope that your blog post above, about Biden, was sent as a "letter to the editor" of the Chicago Tribune. If it was not sent, it should be.

Hi owner,

Hi owner, Excellent work!

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