Wednesday, August 25, 2004

The Swift Boat shitstorm, of course, isn't going away. This "resignation" of Benjamin Ginsburg is kinda peculiar. Seems like Team Bush must be nervous about things if they're giving him the ax. After all, it's fairly well known that people on the Democratic side have worked with left-leaning 527s, but there doesn't seem to be a huge controversy there.

The right of course cries "media bias!" when it comes to this, which is, naturally, what they always do when something doesn't go exactly their way. The D party ties to 527s haven't been as scrutinized because none of the liberal 527s have had the impact that the Swift Boat group has. Considering how much extended coverage the Swift Boat group is getting (the ads themselves are only airing in a handful of battleground markets), I'd argue that this may very well point to a subtle right-wing bias. An argument which is also total bullshit.

The Democrats are, naturally, handling the issue in just about the worst way possible. We'll ignore for a second that they took over a week to even fucking respond. But sending Max Cleland to the fucking ranch, calling on Asscroft to open up an investigation, and asking Bush to condemn the group aren't doing a fucking thing. I'm not surprised that this has happened, but John Kerry should have never let this controversy go as far as it has. At one early point he should have just said "I was in Vietnam, George Bush wasn't" and then given everyone the finger. Well, maybe not that last part.

Still, there's no argument that Kerry volunteered for Vietnam and served there, while Bush hid at home in the National Guard. Kerry should have just left it at that, but after focusing so heavily on his time in 'Nam it's no surprise that this smear campaign came to the surface. I'm not saying that Kerry was asking for it, but Kerry was asking for it. This by no means justifies the Swift Boat campaign, but we know what a bunch of scumbags Team Bush has on its side. Kerry needed his Vietnam service to differentiate himself from Bush, but he shouldn't have made such a big deal of it, allowing it to get to the point that it opened the door for things like the Swift Boat group.

Speaking of the Swift Boat group, one thing seems fairly clear to me: these are just a bunch of Vietnam vets who are still bitter about Kerry speaking out against the war after he got back from it. That's pretty much the extent of why they're doing this. Of course, I don't know these guys personally, so I can't say for sure. But that's my impression.

John O'Neill -- head of the group and author of the anti-Kerry Unfit for Command -- was on Hannity and Colmes last night, and at the end of his segment Hannity asked him what question he would ask Kerry if he could, and O'Neill's response was something to the effect of "I'd ask him if he thought it was time to apologize to all those vets he offended by speaking out against the war." Obviously not a direct quote, but that was the gist of it. If that's the one thing he'd like to ask John Kerry, then that shows what's foremost on his mind -- namely, Kerry's anti-war stance. Look, I know 'Nam was an awful experience, but fuck you assholes all the same. 'Nam was a shit war, a lot of people did some shitty things, and John Kerry had every right (and many would argue a duty) to speak out against all of it. Just because you're bent over his actions doesn't even begin to justify what you're doing.

On the Bush side, Dubya has called for an end to all 527s. Of course he has -- the 527s are predominately favoring Kerry (or so we've been told), and the only 527 group Bush needed has already done its damage. So let's shut 527s down! We don't need 'em! Fuck you, dooshebag.

Kerry couldn't just ignore the Swift Boat attack, but by responding he just brings more and more attention to them. In the end, I just can't help but feeling like any actions the Kerry side takes just fucks them more, whether they make a solid move or not. Team Bush has taken a plank from Kerry's platform and used it to define the debate on their terms. Team Bush has Kerry in a bind over Vietnam -- the one issue that Kerry was supposed to be unimpeachable on. This is true evil genius at work. Whoa, am I saying that Team Bush is the Nazis? No, I'm not. But they are definitely Nazi-like.

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