It is becoming abundantly clear that Joe Lieberman needs a crash course in Western Literature. After socking Dan Gerstein last week as the last casualty in his termination of his campaign staff since his loss in early August, Lieberman seems more and more like an Oedipus or a Captain Ahab figure in a megalomaniacal quest to retain power rather than a dignified statesman.
Flip-flopping his way in temper tantrum after temper tantrum, Lieberman appears tragically addicted to contradictions and parsing: first he criticized those—in particular, congressional Democrats—for criticizing the Iraq war, then he appears on “Face the Nation” to rehash the very criticisms he criticized; first he accuses Ned Lamont to be a closeted, Greenwich Republican, then he casts Lamont as the patron saint of the left; first he insists that he is a true Democrat, but then ignores results, his former party’s will, and launches an independent run, with GOP influences in tow, only to undermine the efforts of other democratic congressional candidates.
As has been said before, Joe wants it both ways. Better yet, he wants things his way. This might explain why the GOP-backed Vets for Freedom (Swiftboaters, version 2006) that bombarded John Kerry and scudded Max Cleland, a Vietnam Veteran who sacrificed 3 limbs on the battlefields in Southeast Asia, have appeared from the shadows to support Joe.
As Sophocles and Herman Melville asserted in their most notable characters, Oedipus and Captain Ahab respectively, dangerous men are not only dangerous to themselves, but, more importantly, to those whom they represent.