Last week the earthly career of Senator Edward Kennedy came to an end .
It is customary on such occasions not to speak ill of the dead , yet , such were the extravagant eulogies paid to this deeply flawed individual by his Leftist fellow-travellers in the news media , that it is incumbent on conservatives to recount the truth buried under this catalogue of lies and distortions .
Headlines such as "Ted Kennedy Gave Us Strength To Achieve Our Dreams" , "Faith Of A Kennedy" and "My Family's Debt To Kennedys' America" may have given the readers of these left-wing publications the erroneous impression that this was the passing of a moral and intellectual giant whose like we were not going to see again .
The BBC , in particular , were gushing in their praise , only fleetingly acknowledging the counter arguments surrounded by "scare" quotes - "Papers discuss 'Flawed' Kennedy".
"Flawed" is an incredible understatement .
Mary Jo Kopechne , cheating at Harvard , terrorist-supporting , pro-abortion , anti-marriage (or , indeed , anti-sexual propriety) , viciously partisan , corrupt . The list of his crimes against Western civilisation is endless .
Mark Steyn has a good article focusing on Mary Jo Kopechne's assisted death 40 years ago and the disgusting partisan baiting of Judge Bork in 1987.
We are all flawed, and most of us are weak, and in hellish moments, at a split-second's notice, confronting the choice that will define us ever after, many of us will fail the test. Perhaps Mary Jo could have been saved; perhaps she would have died anyway. What is true is that Edward Kennedy made her death a certainty. When a man (if you'll forgive the expression) confronts the truth of what he has done, what does honor require? Six years before Chappaquiddick, in the wake of Britain's comparatively very minor "Profumo scandal," the eponymous John Profumo, Her Majesty's Secretary of State for War, resigned from the House of Commons and the Queen's Privy Council and disappeared amid the tenements of the East End to do good works washing dishes and helping with children's playgroups, in anonymity, for the last 40 years of his life. With the exception of one newspaper article to mark the centenary of his charitable mission, he never uttered another word in public again.
Ted Kennedy went a different route. He got kitted out with a neck brace and went on TV and announced the invention of the "Kennedy curse," a concept that yoked him to his murdered brothers as a fellow victim – and not, as Mary Jo perhaps realized in those final hours, the perpetrator. He dared us to call his bluff, and, when we didn't, he made all of us complicit in what he'd done. We are all prey to human frailty, but few of us get to inflict ours on an entire nation .
Peter Hitchens writes a similar article from the perspective of a British patriot , under the headline "Bloated, self-indulgent and an enemy of Britain".
"How can it be that Edward Kennedy is treated, at his death, as if he were some kind of hero?
What I say now is made necessary by the praise heaped on him.
If his supporters had maintained a decent silence, as they should have done, there would be no need to say it.
But Mr Kennedy was not a hero, least of all here.
He was, like his crooked, horrible father, a dedicated enemy of this country.
He gave aid and comfort to the violent and unreasonable wing of Irish Republicanism and to the ignorant and sentimental strand of Irishry in America that does so much damage to Ireland itself.
He was, besides, guilty of many evil actions – both as an individual and as a politician.
Without his sinister and bizarrely idealised family’s money and power to protect him, he would have gone to prison for his shameful part in the death of Mary Jo Kopechne.
And he would have been driven from public life for ever.
You might think, from the obituaries, that his role as a supporter of ‘liberal’ causes – including the killing of the unborn, specifically forbidden by the faith he claimed to espouse – had in some way atoned for his bloated, selfish private life.
Surely the truth is a little different.
As a man who lived a life of gross self-indulgence, he could hardly oppose policies that condoned the same indulgence in others, could he?
Liberal, for certain. A lion? Hardly. Other creatures, with more legs, come to mind."
And you can't say fairer than that !