Democrats & Liberals Archives

Band of Brothers

A smear campaign is a tactic of desperation. Whether the rhetoric is utilized to discredit or to distract, it is always used in place of substance. Sometimes it is successful; sometimes it backfires. While all of this ignorant chatter is annoying, there is one trend that is very troubling. The politically motivated attacks on war heroes, also called ‘swift boating.’

John McCain, Max Cleland, John Kerry, and now Jack Murtha have all been victims of this cowardly tactic. The men and women who voluntarily put their lives on the line defending this country should never have their war record questioned for political purposes. The attack on Jack Murtha is similar to the attack on John Kerry, 'he wasn't wounded enough to deserve the Purple Heart." What are the chances that two war heroes that got in the way of the Republicans, were awarded Purple Hearts they didn't deserve? Forget about what any of this has to do with the issue at hand, but if any of this is true, it sounds like a problem within the military, not the veterans themselves.

Now the debate has turned to who is behind the swift boating of Jack Murtha. The RNC has been blamed, but now the seed has been planted that it was a Democrat who lost his seat in the house to Murtha [1], adding yet another layer to the debate. The tactic has worked. Instead of having a substantive debate about how to proceed in Iraq, the conversation has been shifted to a completely worthless debate that achieves absolutely nothing.

These shameful attacks on those who risked life and limb, for all of us, needs to stop. These are men and women who voluntarily fight, so we don't have to, they deserve better. Band of Brothers, a PAC supporting 53 veterans who are running for Congress in 2006 as Democrats, are leading the fight. If this disturbing trend of attacking the war records of veterans concerns you, please take action and sign The Band of Brothers petition demanding an end to this disgraceful practice.

    The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation. —George Washington

[1] This may be true, I read some of the comments made by Don Bailey, but they really sound like sour grapes to me.

Posted by JayJay Snow at January 25, 2006 1:02 AM
Comments
Comment #116589

I think ‘Support our troops’ is a simple talking point, not to be taken seriously, especially if they disagree with those in power. I mean, why should risking your life and performing exceptionally in the face of that danger matter in present day politics?

Posted by: tony at January 25, 2006 8:07 AM
Comment #116593

Jay Jay Snowman,

Your post seems quite appropriate in light of this article:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/24/AR2006012401011.html?sub=AR

Doesn’t that kind of echo in large part what Murtha was saying?

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at January 25, 2006 8:19 AM
Comment #116598

JayJay:

A smear campaign is a tactic of desperation

Looking at past political races, I’m not sure this is always true. According to most polls, the public dislikes negative campaigning, but I’d say that almost every campaign at every level uses this tactic. Why??? Because its effective. That’s an unfortunate truth.

I’d agree with you that it changes the topic from a substantive one to an unconsequential one most of the time. It happens within parties, as you described with Bailey and Murtha, and between parties, as you described with Kerry and Bush. Unfortuately, as we saw with Kerry, it was fantastically successful in hurting the Kerry campaign, which means it will be used again and again.

I’m not in favor of electing someone based on their military career. Its one of many issues, though, that make up the candidate. Kerry played up his Viet Nam history to epic proportions, and invited others to look at his history more closely. While I’m not supporting the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, I AM saying that one cannot bring up topics in a campaign and then later call for those same topics to not be discussed.

Military service is an honor. Jack Murtha served his country in combat. If his wounds were small or great, he did his country proud. I don’t agree with his current stance on Iraq, but his history as a veteran carries no weight on that issue with me. I disagree with his stance because I think his stance is wrong, whether he were a veteran or not.

His service in Viet Nam gives him a small view of war and policy. It does not make him a military expert. It does not in itself make his view right or wrong. Its simply part of his past, and I will honor him for his service to our country, while disagreeing with his stated course of action for our country

Posted by: joebagodonuts at January 25, 2006 8:42 AM
Comment #116599

JayJay,

Good article. The practice of smearing the military backgrounds of politicians has got to stop.

It’s been done to more than just the people you mentioned. A while back quite a few people were accusing a presidential candidate of having been AWOL from his Guard service. They had absolutely no proof, of course. They even forged documents to make their story look plausible. Repugnant practice…

Posted by: TheTraveler at January 25, 2006 8:43 AM
Comment #116602

JayJay:

Just read the article linked below, and it takes a dramatically different viewpoint than most. It’s titled “I don’t support the troops”, by Joel Stein. In light of your comments about military service, his article seems to take a mostly opposite view. It seems related to me, but if its off topic, my apologies.

Don’t know who he speaks for other than himself, but its a different view of military service and the whole supporting the troops while disagreeing with the war issue. Its there for your reading—I’d be curious to see what you think, and whether you agree or disagree with Stein.

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-stein24jan24,0,4137172.column?coll=la-news-comment-opinions

Posted by: joebagodonuts at January 25, 2006 8:57 AM
Comment #116604

“While I’m not supporting the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, I AM saying that one cannot bring up topics in a campaign and then later call for those same topics to not be discussed.”

No one has suggested not discussing the relevance on military service or actions taken while in the military, but that’s not what happened.

Bush knew that running against someone with military experience was a weakness, and he could not go toe-to-toe with that, so he attacked Kerry’s military service (similar to McCain and now Murtha.) I don’t see how someone can suggest that they support the troops, but is so willing to personally attack and discredit military service when a person publicly disagrees with him. It strikes mean as extremely demeaning to veterans (and war heroes) and speaks volumes about Bush’s real character.

Posted by: tony at January 25, 2006 9:11 AM
Comment #116610

JayJay,
I agree and it has been one of my constant themes when I post that the military should be off limits, this is to include the veterans when it comes to the political football.

After Congresswoman Schmidt’s (R-Ohio) display in congress where she implied that Congressman Murtha was a coward I told my son I would rather not have him enlist. I served for 10 years and I am proud of those years. I did not however serve a particular party… I served America. For a glimpse of what her real feelings are, look at her campaign against her Republican opponent… who was a vet from this war.

When any political party tries to imply that a person’s status as a “hero” is dependant on their interpretation and whether or not he vet/service member agrees with them then there is something very very wrong.

In discussions I have had republicans bounce all over the place… past military achievements are null due to what they did after their service… or after their heroics they sat in a chair at headquarters… or the Marine that Schmidt was quoting was a hero though never served in Iraq, yet Murtha was open to criticism because what he did was so long ago.

People talk about “playing up war” activities… You want to know what is the difference between a fairy tale and a war story is? One starts out, “Once upon a time…” and the other starts, “Now this is no bull$%!&” That really is about the only difference between them.

Anyone who has ever received an accomadation will be hard pressed to match what was written with what actually happened. This is just the nature of the beast! This was distorted and capitalized on by the people that did not like a candidate.

Medals and accomodations are not just for the people getting them… they serve as a way to inspire others and to promote specific behavior and values.

I too will agree that military service is not a requirement for a good politican… but I believe that it should not be used to attack. Someone answered the call of his country… he served… which means doing what he is supposed to do, where he is supposed to do it!

When it does come down to what a military person is actually thinking or needing as far as support, I believe that a person with prior service has an advantage… one based on experience rather than movies, books and intuition. I also believe that they might have a bit better understanding of what the military culture is and be more hesitant to use the military option.

For example… many choose to cite the silence of the current military command as acceptance of Bush’s strategy… but this is not an understandig of the culture of the military where accomplishing goals as set out by our civilian superiors is the focus… Bits of the disagreements and doubts the senior commanders were having are starting to creep out.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 25, 2006 9:20 AM
Comment #116619

Excellent post, JayJay. Thanks for bringing the Band of Brothers to our attention. I’d also like to add that Gen. Wes Clark is doing good things for our veterans over at securingamerica.com

JBOD, I enjoyed that tounge-in-cheek op-ed you linked. This part had me rolling:

I do sympathize with people who joined up to protect our country, especially after 9/11, and were tricked into fighting in Iraq. I get mad when I’m tricked into clicking on a pop-up ad, so I can only imagine how they feel.

But when you volunteer for the U.S. military, you pretty much know you’re not going to be fending off invasions from Mexico and Canada. So you’re willingly signing up to be a fighting tool of American imperialism, for better or worse. Sometimes you get lucky and get to fight ethnic genocide in Kosovo, but other times it’s Vietnam.

And sometimes, for reasons I don’t understand, you get to just hang out in Germany.

I know this is all easy to say for a guy who grew up with money, did well in school and hasn’t so much as served on jury duty for his country. But it’s really not that easy to say because anyone remotely affiliated with the military could easily beat me up, and I’m listed in the phone book.

Heh. :)

But then he ends on a slightly more serious note:

I’m not advocating that we spit on returning veterans like they did after the Vietnam War, but we shouldn’t be celebrating people for doing something we don’t think was a good idea. All I’m asking is that we give our returning soldiers what they need: hospitals, pensions, mental health and a safe, immediate return. But, please, no parades.

Seriously, the traffic is insufferable.

Good entertaining read. Thanks for the link, JBOD.

Posted by: American Pundit at January 25, 2006 10:01 AM
Comment #116625

AP:

If you are interested in getting a clearer picture of Stein’s rationale, below is a link a transcript of Stein and Hugh Hewitt from a radio program.

Its a bit lengthy, and Hewitt tries hard to skew the conversation by asking “have you stopped spitting on your mother” type questions. But you’ll get Stein’s comments in his own words.

http://www.radioblogger.com/#001332%20

Posted by: joebagodonuts at January 25, 2006 10:13 AM
Comment #116634

The Traveller-
Actually, there is proof that he attended an insufficient number of drills for his commitment. Also, he lost flight status over a missed physical, which as I understand it is something pilots rarely let happen. Bush’s lack of discipline, lack of ability to conscientiously stick with his duty through his full commitment as required by regulations is in fact a legitimate issue.

Murtha’s wounds are not. They are documented, and the military has awarded him the medals for them. I doubt there’s anything in regulation that gauges qualifications for wounds in combat based on how much of your large intestines is hanging out, or the number of limbs missing. Max Cleland, having had the horrible accident with the grenade outside of combat, received no such medal.

Murray Waas takes on other elements of this story:

The Post story, by reporters Howard Kurtz and Shallagh Murray, quotes extensively David Thibault, the editor in chief of the (who ever heard of them before the Washington Post decided to give them such prominence?) Cybercast News Service, as saying that Murtha’s medals from 1967 are relevant now “because the congressman has really put himself in the forefront of the antiwar movement.”

But the article tells us very little about Thibault himself. Had the reporters done a simple Internet search, they would have discovered this biography of Thibault posted online which describes him as a “senior producer for a televised news magazine” broadcast and sponsored by the Republican National Committee.

Conflict of interest much? This particular news service’s editor-in-chief is an employee of the RNC. Murtha’s swiftboating benefits the RNC. So if he found some detail that might moderate or invalidate his charges on Murtha, he might have an interest in disregarding that, no?

It gets better:

Jane quotes the website as saying: “Cybercast News Service attempted to contact Fox for this article, but learned that the health of the 81-year-old was too poor to allow him to communicate.”

So if I understand this correctly, regarding the purported allegations by the late Rep. Saylor that Rep. Murtha did not deserve his Purple Hearts, the Washington Post is relying on the reporting of the Cyercast News Service, which is in turn is relying on comments made years ago by Harry Fox, who is in turn is quoting the late Congressman Saylor— who died all the way back in 1973.

Fox worked for the guy that Murtha defeated, another conflict of interest: why not slant or make up crap about the guy who defeated you- a little payback, huh? Worse than that, though, Fox is no longer in good enough health to be questioned himself, so in short, all this is based on:

1)The word of a News agency whose editor has a political conflict of interest,

2)That did not interview itself

3)a source who can no longer speak for himself

4)Who has a political rivalry and thus conflict of interest

5)speaking for a man who died in 1973

6)Who cannot be interviewed, therefore, to corroborate his account.

The other source, Don Bailey, has his own motives: He lost a hotly contested race to him in 1982. As Wikipedia has it:

In 1982, after redistricting by the state legislature, Bailey’s district was largely merged into the Twelfth Congressional District of Pennsylvania with fellow Democrat John Murtha, who had been serving since 1974. In a strongly fought primary, Bailey lost. Interestingly, when the Republican nominee for the seat withdrew the same year, Bailey was seriously considered as a replacement; he came in a very strong second at the Republican nominating convention held that year. This underscores that he was viewed as a conservative Democrat.

Others have brought up ABSCAM, forgetting that he was one of the few Congressman who refused the bribe offered.

So what are we to believe? Political opponents, especially those we can’t question for clarification, or official Marine records and John Murtha’s good word?

This is the moral morass that the Republican party has fallen into, where respect for military service and the truth have become casualties of their fight for political supremacy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 25, 2006 10:27 AM
Comment #116649

Stephen,

The article you linked to is based on opinions, just like the accusations about Kerry and Murtha.

Bush, Kerry and Murtha were all honorably discharged, and to the best of our knowledge none of them got into any trouble over any part of their service. That’s why, in my oppinion, making unfounded accusations about them dishonors the military itself.

Smearing the military history of these politicians when the military never found any problems with them is wrong no matter which party they happen to belong to.

Posted by: TheTraveler at January 25, 2006 11:32 AM
Comment #116660

Travler,

The problem with your argument is that there’s no substantive credible evidence against Kerry and Murtha. That’s why the term “swift boating” has the connotations it does.
There is credible evidence against Bush II and that his illegitimate behavior was sponged.

Posted by: Dave at January 25, 2006 12:27 PM
Comment #116668

One way to separate out who deserves what honor: Can you get a purple heart while serving for TANG?

Posted by: tony at January 25, 2006 1:09 PM
Comment #116670

Terrific article, Snowman.
And good posts all around.

Jbod re Murtha:
“I don’t agree with his current stance on Iraq, but his history as a veteran carries no weight on that issue with me.”

But the fact that he chaired the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense from 91 to 95, and has since served as the subcommitee as its ranking Democrat should carry plenty of weight. Especially when he acknowledges the fact that Bush is in the process of breaking our Army because of the cost of this war.

“I disagree with his stance because I think his stance is wrong, whether he were a veteran or not.”

“I think they’re trying to get this administration to stay. I think they want us there. Because we have united the Iraqis against us. We’re spending all this money and diverting our resources away from the war on terrorism because we’re involved in a civil war in Iraq.”
You think this statement by Murtha is wrong? I don’t.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 25, 2006 1:12 PM
Comment #116671

Dave,

More opinions based on limited knowledge.

You’re not just demeaning Bush here. You’re accusing TANG and Air Force Officers of wrongdoing, otherwise how do you explain the honorable discharge? In the attempt to “swift boat” Bush, you insult the integrity of the military itself, just like the people who make similar accusations about honorably discharged Democrats. That’s why I find the practice so undesirable.

Posted by: TheTraveler at January 25, 2006 1:15 PM
Comment #116675

There seems to be a consensus here that the military record of a presidential candidate is not very important. I happen to disagree wholeheartedly. I believe that the military record of the person seeking or holding the office of Commander-in-Chief of our entire military is one of the more important aspects of their profile.
The swift-boating problem is most troubling, because it involves inaccurate or untrue representations of a candidate’s record. This is different than just stating facts about the person’s record that are problematic.
If the information is true, then it should be brought to light. The Kerry and Murtha situations involve politically motivated opinions and actual lies. The question of Bush’s military activities goes more to the facts of the record. There is a big difference between the two. The discussions about Bush center on whether or not the record shows that he did not fulfill his obligation. The efforts have been in obtaining that record and bringing it out into the open. You have not seen a bunch of bush-hating, ex-reservists talking into a camera, telling how they didn’t feel that George really did a good job, or that he didn’t deserve his good conduct medal.
We should not confuse the differences between these two types of issues. What was going on about Bush was not “swift-boating”. Legitimate questions were raised about our potential supreme commander of the military.
When it comes to those types of questions, they should be asked, regardless of the party of the candidate. And they should be given considerable weight.

Posted by: Cole at January 25, 2006 1:48 PM
Comment #116679
Don’t know who he speaks for other than himself, but its a different view of military service and the whole supporting the troops while disagreeing with the war issue. Its there for your reading—I’d be curious to see what you think, and whether you agree or disagree with Stein.

JBOD,

Thanks for the link. Stein makes some interesting points; they are just aimed at the wrong people. Some are unable to disconnect the people who are doing the fighting, and the decision-makers that put them there. The troops were not given the intelligence and asked for their opinion. They did not take a vote to go to war with Iraq. Those decisions were made by people who knew when making those decisions (far too lightly, in my opinion) that they would never fight on the battlefield for their cause. (Some won’t even fight for American principles here at home.)

The war against OBL and al-Qeada was more than justified; the war against Iraq was not. In the end, we may have had to go into Iraq eventually, but there was simply no reason that it had to be the rush job it was. That rushing has resulted in the horrific mess we are in now. If our leaders would have waited to clarify all the intelligence, built support among our allies, and actually come up with a plan to win the peace, then this war may be justified. (Of course, if there was reliable intelligence that Iraq was an immanent threat that must be dealt with without haste, then that would have been justified, but this is not the case.)

Stein makes this ludicrous statement, that I think he could not be more wrong about:

But blaming the president is a little too easy. The truth is that people who pull triggers are ultimately responsible, whether they’re following orders or not. An army of people making individual moral choices may be inefficient, but an army of people ignoring their morality is horrifying. An army of people ignoring their morality, by the way, is also Jack Abramoff’s pet name for the House of Representatives.

Our troops sign up to defend our country and it’s citizens. Nothing could be more moral, honorable, or selfless. The lack of morality that is horrifying is at the leadership level, those who are given the responsibility to make such decision. Ultimately, IMO, the people who send our troops into battle pulled every single one of those triggers.

Posted by: JayJay Snowman at January 25, 2006 1:54 PM
Comment #116681
Posted by TheTraveler at January 25, 2006 01:15 PM: More opinions based on limited knowledge.
Not opinion, documented or first hand recolections are not opinions. They are evidence of fact.


You’re not just demeaning Bush here. You’re accusing TANG and Air Force Officers of wrongdoing, otherwise how do you explain the honorable discharge?
Yes we are just talking about Bush. There is implication that others were complicit, but that does not demean anyone who was not directly involved.

In the attempt to “swift boat” Bush, you insult the integrity of the military itself, just like the people who make similar accusations about honorably discharged Democrats. That’s why I find the practice so undesirable.
Again, we are just talking about Bush. There is some implication that others were complicit, but that does not demean anyone who was not directly involved. Posted by: Dave at January 25, 2006 2:02 PM
Comment #116687

Cole, excellent post. A fine honorable military record should indeed always be given considerable weight. After all, people in the military can be leaders and people who know how to take orders at the same time. These are the exact same qualities we need from our politicans.

I just read the article Jbod linked to, and I agree wholeheartedly with Jay Jay’s take on it.

Dave, I think the problem may be that whenever someone talks about Bush, people on the right immediately assume we’re talking about all Republican’s. There isn’t enough separation in their minds between the actions of their leaders and themselves individually — and I personally find this rather creepy. When the Dems were in office, I was constantly critiquing their performance whenever I didn’t approve or agree with their actions and decisions.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 25, 2006 2:24 PM
Comment #116709

Adrienne:

But the fact that he chaired the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense from 91 to 95, and has since served as the subcommitee as its ranking Democrat should carry plenty of weight.

I never thought John Kerry’s 4 months of Viet Nam combat gave him any special insight into the overall military affairs of the country, nor would I think that Murtha’s one year in Viet Nam did either. It gave them a distinct view of war up close, but from a rather narrow vantagepoint.

I’d agree with you though on your statement above, because Murtha’s tenure on the HAP subcommittee gives him experience and information. His experience with the military from the Congressional standpoint gives his statements more weight, in my opinion, than someone who has no similar experience.

That all being said, we can still disagree with those who have tenure and experience. Otherwise, we’d be forced to blindly follow the desires of the Strom Thurmonds or Jesse Helms due to their tenures. My opinion is that Murtha would like to bring our troops out of Iraq too soon.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at January 25, 2006 3:43 PM
Comment #116712

Adrienne,

The lack of separation between any Republican is a tactical issue. If you have leaders within the party that have notable flaws or questionable behaviour on their resumes, then you can’t claim moral superiority.

By defending every single Republican with a shady past, they make Democrats look inconsistent whenever they scrutinize and demand accountability of their own leaders.

Stonewalling is not right, but it is effective. I heard AG Gonzalez on NPR during my commute home last night. He was defending the administration’s wiretapping and I became so enraged I could scream. The issue was that he admitted nothing, acknowledged nothing, rejected even the slightest hint of questionable results or actions.

It is the GOP way. They are flawless, they are beyond critique and they will fight you on every single point, especially when they are wrong. The only good government is the one they run with impunity.

I’m sorry, but I’m disgusted after hearing the AG last night.

Posted by: CPAdams at January 25, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #116715

JayJay-

By what time table do you consider Iraq to be a “rush job”?

Iraq Timeline 2002-2003

Posted by: George in SC at January 25, 2006 3:52 PM
Comment #116717

And in case you want to point to the Bush Adminstration’s admissions of it failings during Katrina as an example of Republicans policing themselves, think again.

The greatest legacies of the Bush Administration will be rememberances of their nasty partisan politics along with the absolute denial of any errors in judgment or action on their part over their eight years in power.

Posted by: CPAdams at January 25, 2006 3:56 PM
Comment #116734

-“I don’t see how someone can suggest that they support the troops, but is so willing to personally attack and discredit military service when a person publicly disagrees with him. It strikes mean (me) as extremely demeaning to veterans (and war heroes) and speaks volumes about Bush’s real character.-“

Posted by: tony at January 25, 2006 09:11 AM

Tony,
I am a member of the armed forces and have served 1 tour in Iraq and 2 tours in Afghanistan. I am considered by family and friends ( who are biased) to be a war hero. I have recieved multiple medals and awards, inlcuding a Bronze Star w/ Valor.

On all of my tours I have seen men do amazing things and not get recognized for their heroic actions and I have also seen men do just what is asked of them and get recognized with medals and awards. The military is just like the real world in that it is half of what you know and half of who you know. That being said I think with the right information from the right people it is very easy to discredit someones war record.

Now, I do not know much about Kerry’s record or anybody elses because I obviously wasn’t around in those days. So I’m not defending anybody, I’m just stating my knowledge on the subject from a military members point of view. I also can say that it is very rare for me to run in to people that I work with that who look down upon any of the politicians who served, inlcuding President Bush. Has a matter of Fact a large majority of us are Bush supporters. We are mostly college drop-outs so are intelligent level when it comes to politics is pretty low.

Posted by: SS at January 25, 2006 4:46 PM
Comment #116738

George,
I do not know if I would consider the lead up to war a rush job militarily… if you are talking about positioning of troops and all that. Though, it could be argued that once the US lost permission to use Turkey as a staging zone it became a bit more intense for everyone else.

What, I believe was one rush job was the rationalization upto the war. There was no “clear and present” danger that determined a time restraint that we had to act upon. Whether considerations in the war zone if the war was to begin within a window might cause a rush.

What was, I believe, criminally neglegent on the part of the administration was Rumsfeld. His whole goal since becoming Sec. of Defense was to show that the military could be changed… that more could be done with less and at less cost.

His primary purpose was not the period after the war when we should have been establishing safety for the people who’s country we had just invaded.

Sir, this now has absolutely nothing to do with terrorists or partisan politics or anything else. If, we agree, that the people of Iraq were held hostage to the mad man Saddam, then they were completely innocent.

They should have been made to feel secure, their vital necessities should have been met… law and order should have been established so as to help them recover and transition to the democracy we wished to help them with.

This was not done… because the focus was on the winning of a conflict which was a foregone conclusion to begin with.

So, was this portion “rushed” or the ball just dropped? I believe that it was dropped. After the conflict true attention was not given to what was needed.

Why or how could this have happened? Possibly because of too many people with too little exposure to conflicting opinions? Think tanks that for 10 years that advocacted the overthrow of Saddam without considering the ramifications. After all, one of the reasons give for not deposing him after the first gulf war was of the fear of what is happening right now.

The people doing the leading are primarily motivated by money. Their concerns are money… the cost of social programs, socailized medicine, the cost of entitlements, the bottom line of taxes, costs and who is going to pay for them. This, is their motivation… and they made the simple mistake of believing that everyone was motivated by the same thing that they are.

They believed that once Saddam was overthrown everone would run out into the streets and immediately open their own business to chase the dollar, create a democracy to protect their capitalistic future and all would live happily ever after!

Any “intellectual” could have told them that not all people, especially Muslims, are motivated by money.

No one wants to study Turkey. Why is that? Why, when it is the only democratic, secular country in the Arab world? Read this history or what it took for a Turk to change Turkey! Then, imagine the short sightedness of our plan going into Iraq.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 25, 2006 4:52 PM
Comment #116742

I would much rather see a bunch of vets in congress than the current crop of chicken hawks.
Is this group all Dems? Do the Reps have a similar group or did they all get deferments?

Posted by: Bill at January 25, 2006 5:03 PM
Comment #116773

Bill,
There are actually some vets coming back and getting into politics… however, if you look at the one that ran against Congresswoman Schmidt (R-Ohio) and her buddy that she says told her to tell Murtha that “Cowards cut and run…” they either play down or denigrate military service.

Even the Marine Col. that was supposed to have said the “Coward” statement is a desk jockey reservist with no Iraq experience. He is too busy furthering the Republican agenda.

Now, I have no problem with Guard or Reservists. They have taken the major brunt of the committment in the past decade or so.

What I object to is political hacks who put on the uniform for political purposes without putting their butts on the line.

Not everyone can or should be a front line troop… some people and jobs are just a important that never go on the line….

But, their’s is a good case study of the Republican’s idea of service.

Look at the average demographics of the enlisted military…. as a percentage of their population it is very heavy minority. Though the bulk may be white and vote Republican, this is interpreted by Republicans as believing that all the military supports them.

So, they pander to a person in uniform until one of them gets out and enters politics or disagrees with them… then they are called cowards.

Anytime anyone compromises or agrees to work with Republicans for what is best for the country they are sure to be stabbed in the back eventually…. as soon as there is the slighest disagreement.

Evidence, Murtha. Once there was a disagreement then they went with the slander and innuendo…

Jack on this site is accusing Democrats of supporting the President in Afganistan only because they can beat him up on Iraq and still claim to be against terrorists.

Can you believe the logic there? I have delved into the heart and soul of the conservative right wing republican and it has taken more than a week to get the stink off!

They are petty, childish, jealous and worried that anyone might get something that they are not entitled too… though most are beneficaries of a system that has benefitted them for decades… giving their families opportunities that gave them opportunities… yet they believe that they did it all themselves.

They nickle and dime the poor and say nothing of the $billions stolen by corporate greed or corruption… money that working Americans lost through investing.

They believe they are moral but have no tolerance of differences. They believe that everyone should be like them… be motivated by greed and accumulation of “stuff” like them… that to be different is bad. They say they are the party concerned about education, yet they will not support schools White ethno-centric history, vcalues and morals are the only ones taught. They don’t believe that other Americans are entitled to learn about their cultures past because that would be multiculturalism! And, they don’t know what it is… but it is bad.

They denigrate “intellectuals” and mess with higher education funding. They resent some fields of study as “liberal” and thus of less merit. They are demanding more “conservative” professors being hired… maybe they would also want to include more communist professors to teach economics or finance?

They “worship” the warriors without understanding war. What is a worse waste of a military life? No solider, airman, sailor or marine should die needlessly but they all think it is a Rambo movie or something.

Seriously, I have never met more pampered, spoiled whiny children in my life. I feel a sadness that their life is so shallow… full of contradictions and they are either blind to them or choose not to see them.

Whether or not previous military service makes for a good war time President can be viewed through Presidents such as Lincoln and FDR. It is not necessary… but they had a deep respsect for life that this administration is seriously lacking… and that lack makes for poor military leaders.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 25, 2006 8:00 PM
Comment #116774

FYI: The Daily Kos is featuring a series of articles on the Fighting Dems. They feature backgrounds, policies, locations, etc. Please visit if you wish to know more.

Posted by: Aldous at January 25, 2006 8:07 PM
Comment #116778

The conservative party dies without the lignin of stereotyping the opposition, name calling, deception, misrepresentations, and most of all the FEAR and IGNORANCE of its supporters.

When you cannot win the argument with logic and reasoning, you look to paint your opponent as liars, unworthy, immoral, yeah, even EVIL. The demonization of Bill Clinton held the party together to achieve the mess we are in now. The eight year reprieve we got from those who have seized power in our government was never supposed to have happened. THATS WHAT THE IMPEACHMENT WAS ALL ABOUT. The same folks hollering about rule of law are busy prevaricating and trying to cover up for their leaders now.

How can you compare a sexual escapade between consenting adults as an impeachable offense against the purposeful leaking of secret agents, spying on American citizens without warrants, intentionally and deceptively going to war for money, oil, and political gain - knowing you were hiding evidence that debunked your stance. Read the Project for a New American Century.

We have the government we deserve. We are a nation of spineless, chickenhawk cowards who are TRULY immoral - they foul their own nests while blaming others. Fphhhaaaa!

Wake up Americans.

Posted by: LibRIck at January 25, 2006 8:43 PM
Comment #116779

William:

And you thought to watse everyone’s time writing thaat crap. Come on, at least try to make it interesting.

(btw - most of the things on your list are wrong and just plain stupid… but I do have a Bush doll dressed up in a leather gimp outfit at the office - he has his nose in the corner behind our main door. He’s in time out.)

Posted by: tony at January 25, 2006 8:47 PM
Comment #116788

Wiliam,

I am a Democrat therefore I:
…kill unborn babies… (I never killed anyone in my life.)
…hate our troops in combat.(Am a disabled vet who understands that you are able to qualify your support of me and others based upon our agreement to your beliefs. I do agree though… we do hate to see our troops in combat because unless there is a clear and attainable objective then each life lost is a waste.)
…love queers…(I couldn’t care less who sleeps with whom… it seems if you want to find the fear that lies in one’s heart… follow their fear… yours and other Republican’s seem to fear gay people… so maybe you are gay?)
…want more taxes!(We believe in paying for what we do, where as, the Republicans have made it a tradition to put it all on our collective credit card and pretend you are our rich uncle… however, when you leave you don’t take the bill… it comes to us!)
…don’t believe there is a terrorist threat.(We recognize a terrorist threat… however, we do not believe that EVERYONE that disagress with us is a terrorist. BTW, I don’t believe there was a political litmus test for the people in the World Trade Towers… nor is there one to join the military)
…hate the President.(We believe that unfettered power is dangerous. Oh, just call us old fashioned. Okay? That was the whole reason behind the founding fathers’ design of our government… because they feared little people getting into power and willingly giving up the rights of all American’s because of partisan blindness)
…must be an atheist. (I always thought that being a Christian meant believing in Christ as my saviour and turning my will over to Him. I now find out it means accepting the tenets of the Republican party, lock, stock and barrel. Disagreement is a sin. Worshiping a President or a Party might be considered idolitry by some.)
…think global warming is true. (Treating a gift from God that is ours to hold in trust and use wisely is to respect that which is given. The act irresponsibly is to be contemptful of God’s gift and acting like a spoiled child who squanders the inheritance that has been passed down to him from God.)
…drive an electric car. (1986 Olds. The radio is electric… does that count?)

You know it’s true you liberal idiots.

William, William, William… my dear sir… civility and manners must not be a strong suit. It is so regretful that parents raise their children to act so boorishly but, as a Liberal, I can accept you for who you are and overlook the way in which you must have been raised.

May we check out the test of a Republican? Just for grins and giggles?

…babies and life are only important from conception to delivery. After that they are wasteful, costly, need to be fed and educated at the public’s expense. With 5 years in power has done absolutely NOTHING to reduce the abortion rate… because that would be compassionate, cost money and they would lose the chance to try to beat up the Democrats over the woman’s right to choose. Instead, would rather do NOTHING for 5 years.
…Believes that combat is like video games or movies. Soldiers are only of value if they are being shot at.
…Anything other than missionary position is sodomy. Wants to know what happens in everyones bedroom.
…Doesn’t believe in paying for anything. Believes that billions spent on war instead of police and intelligence action is a good investment. Pass it on to future generations… besides, debt is a good thing. Just cut corporate taxes and the increased productivity and sales will increase revenue to the government and pay for everything.
…Classifies anyone that disagrees as a terrorist. Excellent for us in election years.
…Wants to give the President complete carte blanche… whether it be with civil rights, the enviornment, our energy policy created in secret, gives billions to HMOs in secrecy… Only Democratic Presidents need to be controlled… because they might have oral sex… or decriminalize homosexuality!
…Must be a Christian in the fundamentalist vein. Believes that Catholics are only good for use at the moment, but once they have turned America in to a theocracy they can then deal with those Pope and Icon worshippers. Jews are a necessary evil because they need to be converted to Christians to fullfil the Revelations. Otherwise… you know… they just control all the money, Hollywood, ACLU and… Christianity can only be claimed by a Republican.. they may bestow it on a Democrat, but only if the Democrat agrees and may be revoked at any time.
…Gets their science from Rush. He tells them that Global Warming is a left wing conspiracy to stick it to the white man. God gave them the earth to use… and nothing is useful unless it is being exploited… because what matters is wealth, Christ wants us to be capitalists and to exploit everything we can as a way of worshipping Him and giving thanks for all He has blessed us with.
…Drive SUVs because, by God, they are going to get theirs before anyone else! They have a God given right to exploit everything and along with the debt… let the future generations worry about this crap.


There William. I hope you enjoyed that. I just love the opportunity to debate with a rabid Republican because the logic is so twisted, self-centered and vile that it is fun for a time… but, after a while you may notice I disappear because I need to purge my soul delving into the dark pit that Republicans call their morality.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 25, 2006 9:26 PM
Comment #116790

Traveller-
Opinions? Opinions come in different flavors. Some cannot be verified by any facts. Others can and should be judged by them.

If Bush had to serve so many drills, and make up those he missed in a certain time, then if records show he showed up for fewer and did not make up those he missed in a timely fashion, then the opinion that he did not follow regulations is quite supportable, and the opposite is not. U.S. News, based on their evidence, concluded that the argument that Bush failed to meet his obligations is legitimate and factually sound.

Meanwhile, we have a situation here with Murtha and Kerry where facts are in dispute, but on grounds and by persons whose credibility is seriously problematic. Where Bush’s attendance problems are a matter of record, and his deal to make up for all that nearly impossible to verify or justify, the opposite is true for Kerry and Murtha. Official records verify their versions, and cast their critics into doubt. Additionally, many of their accusers make assertions that other witnesses either contest or which the people doing the swiftboating source at significant removes.

How is it that nearly every time there is a Democrat with a significant military background, and an opposition to Bush’s policies, that these same questions and accusations come out? Medals are questioned, Motives are questioned, cowardice is asserted, and questionable loyalties to this country are insinuated. Witness are brought out of the woodworks after decades to reveal shocking details.

The pattern, repeated again and again, and only with the opponents of this president, whether that be McCain, Kerry, or Murtha, suggests strategy, rather than spontaneous reactions. If so, then this is politics of the most despicable kind. To intentionally set out to destroy military reputations for political gain, especially on behalf of those who did not subject themselves to combat for their country is the darkest of treachery.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 25, 2006 9:39 PM
Comment #116792

If a candidate runs primarily on their record as a succesful businessman, then the public has every right to examine their record in business. The same is true for those who run primarily on their military experiences. It might be unpleasant and ugly when these accusations and counter-accusations emerge, but if a candidate doesn’t like it, then he needs to ofer more than a military record as their rationale for holding public office. Otherwise you’re just wrapping yourself in the flag and hoping that it will insulate you from criticism.

Personally, I think it’s a big mistake to think that voters care that much about military records to begin with. If they did, Clark might be President today and Bob Dole would have defeated Bill Clinton.

Take the Kerry and Bush situations. Kerry ran heavily—some would say primarily—on his war record and then refused to defend it. Even if the attacks on Bush weren’t discredited by forged documents, it hardly even mattered because nobody, and I mean nobody, ever voted for George Bush on the basis of his experiences in the Texas Air National Guard.

Democrats know that they’re percieved as weak on national security, but if they think that putting up veterans is going to get rid of this perception, they’re deluding themselves.

It might work to some degree if those veterans are able to make substantive and positive proposals about national security issues—but then it will be their ideas, not their personal stories, that carry the day.

This is another example of Democrats trying to take a PR shortcut to offering actual ideas, and it just isn’t going to work.

If the Democrats put together organizations made of anti-war veterans and put up candidates from amongst them, the Republicans will put together organizations twice as large made up pro-war veterans. But in the end it won’t matter because the public isn’t going to care more about the personal backgrounds than the policy proposals candidates bring to the table.

Posted by: sanger at January 25, 2006 9:50 PM
Comment #116796

Another habit of this President is…
When he comes into the spotlight for doing the country wrong, suddenly a new tape of OBL or a threat to our nation appears. Every single time. This time there were two tapes and a threat , We must be getting close!

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 25, 2006 9:56 PM
Comment #116802

Military experience is not overwhelmingly imporant. What is important is a culture and environment where the professionals are allowed to do that which they do best.

This was exemplified in WWII when professional solders were told the overall objective and the politicans dealt with the political.

If you are interested in what strategic political thiking is, read Churchill’s history of WWII. It is about 8 books, but you can find condensed versions of just read the books leading up to America’s involvement and the end of the war.

After the fighting was over was (and is) very important. That is what was lost with this war.

Why? Because the President does not value differing opinions. Neither does Rumsfeld. Read about Lincoln and his meetings where he invited people to speak their minds. He brought opposition members into his cabinet. Clinton did the same thing. He loved the sparring and the intellectual challenge in defending his positions!

I really wish that people could understand that this is not a “partisan” complaint. As I have been posting recently… can anyone show an example of a country with only one political party in power that they would recommend as a good example of how a society functions without the tension and checking of power of a second party?

No administration should be give a blank check. The tendency of each party is to not be as critical of their own party… which can lead to abuse.

Demanding accountability from the President is not being unAmerican or unpartiotic.

A person with no military experience can make an excellent war President… but he cannot do it alone… or without answering to the minority party. Otherwise, by definition… would that not be a dictatorship?

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 25, 2006 10:15 PM
Comment #116809

Darren, there is nothing in the Contitution which requires the president to “answer to the minority party.” And there’s nothing in the Constituion which gives the minority party any special say beyond what they already enjoy as elected office holders.

Abraham Lincoln, arguably the best war president in US history, had minimal war experience at best. He was part of an irregular group during the Black Hawk war and was accused of running from battle.

FDR, probably the second best war president, had no combat experience whatsoever and spent most of his life as a cripple.

Lyndon Johnson, who people of all parties would probably agree was a completely lousy war president, was decorated for valor.

Grant was the hero of the Republic in the civil war and then ran a completely inept and corrupt administration.

Ike—well, their are differing opinions about him, but let’s just say that he was a far better general than president.

Posted by: sanger at January 25, 2006 10:43 PM
Comment #116813
JayJay-

By what time table do you consider Iraq to be a “rush job”?

Iraq Timeline 2002-2003

George,

I explained in my comments what I considered a “rush job”, but I will state them for you again: anything less than “our leaders would have waited to clarify all the intelligence, built support among our allies, and actually come up with a plan to win the peace, then this war may be justified. (Of course, if there was reliable intelligence that Iraq was an immanent threat that must be dealt with without haste, then that would have been justified, but this is not the case.)”

Posted by: JayJay Snowman at January 25, 2006 10:59 PM
Comment #116821

sanger:

Err… you do know Bush was a flop as a CEO, right? All the companies Bush ran lost money and would have declared bankrupcy if Daddy had not been there.

Posted by: Aldous at January 25, 2006 11:34 PM
Comment #116822

Sanger,

Good point on the Presidents and war time. You could’ve added Washington; he was certainly a better General than he was a President.

I think the best thing that happened in a long time is the LA times printing that story from Joel Stein, “Warriors and Wusses”

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-stein24jan24,0,4137172.column?coll=la-news-comment-opinions

“I DON’T SUPPORT our troops. This is a particularly difficult opinion to have, especially if you are the kind of person who likes to put bumper stickers on his car. Supporting the troops is a position that even Calvin is unwilling to urinate on.”


Finally, a liberal stands up and tells the truth. This is what the libs should be saying when they try to tell us that they “support the troops but are against the war”. It can’t be done. They are wrong and finally telling us who they really are.

Posted by: rahdigly at January 25, 2006 11:35 PM
Comment #116832

Rahdigly, I don’t really agree that George Washington was a better general than president, and didn’t mention him because he is really in a class all by himself.

It’s impossible to compare him to anybody else. There was nobody before him to compare to, and things were all very fluid and new in the country when he took office.

In fact, if he’d wanted to, he could have been named King of the United States. He was actually offered that—and he turned it down. The fact that he did that alone, in my thinking, makes him a very great President indeed, despite anything else he did while in office, most of which is lost in the fog of history.

When he took office, there were very few examples in for a democraticaly elected head of a governnment whose powers were divided between separate branches. It was a very new idea, and everything he did was breaking new ground.

To American citizens after the revolution, he was almost a living god—and he didn’t even WANT to be president, but was talked into it. He was pressured into it at a critical moment in American history because there was nobody else with the kind of prestige he enjoyed at that moment of the country’s birth. He turned out to be a very modest president who was relunctant to take enormous powers which were his for the asking.

Whatever any of us think of any of them, for a variety of different reasons, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Jackson, James Monroe, FDR and George W. Bush are the most pivotal and important presidents in American history. Both those who love and hate each of them will debate their very important legacies and contributions throughout all future history.

Posted by: sanger at January 26, 2006 12:17 AM
Comment #116840

Sanger-
The Modus Operandi is what raises suspicion. The targets all have something in common, all politically oppose the president, then see their reputation smeared along the same lines.

As for nobody voting for the president on account of his TANG service, I would like you to explain to me what the significance of landing on a aircraft carrier, walking out in a flight suit and making a speech under a banner saying Mission Accomplished is, if his service as a pilot in the TANG was not supposed to be a plus.

The questions about hypocrisy can be turned around. If the Republicans are so outraged about the president’s military record being questioned on good evidence, why aren’t they putting their foot down when the argument involves the vilification of veterans on crap evidence? Is it only wrong when it happens to Republicans?

Rahdigly-
Tells the truth? Let’s try speaks for himself. I believe that support for our troops does not equal submissiveness to our leaders. I believe that support means less lip service, and better provisions, equipment and benefits. I believe that means honest and trustworthy leadership when our leader guides us into battle. Maybe for you it’s not questioning the president, his decisions, or his war. For me, it’s trying to make sure the best is done for them, through them, and around them.

Y’all are so stuck on this partisan crap that you don’t even realize the sheer variety and grades of opinion on this matter. If you had appealed to broader sentiments about how the war should be fought, you might have built a broader base. Instead, you chose division and narrow-mindeedness.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 26, 2006 12:49 AM
Comment #116846

Stephen, I’ve seen a lot of commentary about Bush’s political stunt of flying a figther out to an aircraft carrier, but until now I’ve seen nobody but you connect this to his TANG record. Bush never made that connection, though it did obviously drew attention to the fact that Bush knows how to fly an airplane.

I agree that it was a political stunt—no doubt. And one that obviously pissed off Bush’s opponents and which they made poltical hay over.

So how about this? I’ll just give you this one. It was pure political pageantry, and to the extent that it backfired, I have no problem with whatever consequences Bush suffered or will suffer as a result.

When and if Bush says that he deserves to be president because he can fly a jet, I’ll agree that he’s full of crap. It’s the same thing I’ll say when John Kerry or any other Democrat says that they deserve to be president (or occupy any political office) because they can operate a Swiftboat or carry out any other military role.

Posted by: sanger at January 26, 2006 1:14 AM
Comment #116854

it makes me sad, that so many wish to bring our country down, you cut and slash so easily, i fear for my childrens future—

Posted by: charlie w at January 26, 2006 2:31 AM
Comment #116874

Can I ask a few simple but stupid questions?

Does anyone think America (and Americans abroad) are safer today than we were 5 years ago?

Are we faced with equal, lesser, or greater threats than 5 years ago?

Have our foreign relations improved or degressed over the past 5 years?

Is our military strength equal, lesser, or greater than 5 years ago? (I’d add here that it might be a good idea to once again realize the consequences of the use of nuclear war just as seriously as we did during the cold war)

Are we more or less dependent on foreign energy sources than 5 years ago?

Based on our ability to restore oil production in Iraq what would the social and economic impact be if we lost nearly all Middle East oil imports? (you might want to check your last heating bill increase based on a couple of hurricanes before you answer)

Do you really believe that we’re unbeatable and indestructable? (you might want to picture 9-11 and the war in Vietnam here)

Do you believe Rumsfeld or do you believe the numerous others that say our ground forces are stretched too thin?

Do you believe that us Democrats still wield enough power to be responsible for all of the ills in this country and possibly the world?

Ah, sheesh what was I thinkin’ it’s all Hillary’s fault, sorry!

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at January 26, 2006 5:30 AM
Comment #116875

Sanger,
Yes, that pretty much sums up what I was saying about military experience as a requirement for a President or a war president… it doesn’t reliably correlate. What does is the openess to listening to people with differing opinions. Does your hesitance with DDE have anything to do with his warning to beware of the military-industrial complex?

Conversly, the Constitution does not give the majority absolute power. What it does do is protect the minority from the tyranny of the majority…

I believe my point was that without opposition there will be trouble. This has been proven throughout history. A one party goverment leads to abuse. With a healthy two party system you have dissent which keeps the spirit of free speech alive.

It keeps the party in power at the moment from going overboard because it is constantly having to justify itself.

Thus, anyone desiring the complete destruction of the oppostition party and complete control of just theirs has the foresight of a slug.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 26, 2006 5:30 AM
Comment #116919

Rumsfeld say’s we’re “battle hardened”:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/25/AR2006012501070.html?referrer=email&referrer=email

When does “battle hardened” become broken?

I believe that the political shift of the Palestinians to Hamas along with Iran’s statements regarding Israel should be sounding a very loud bell.

Do we still have the strength to respond? I believe my dad had 12 weeks training before heading to North Africa during WWII. If all hell breaks loose how far will 12 weeks training go now?

How many months has it taken to train a new army in Iraq? And we’re not done yet.

What percentage of our ground troops are located within the range of a missile out of, lets say Pakistan? Pakistan is also teetering on the edge. A leader is only as strong as his supporters.

Toss in a loose canon like Korea. Hmmm.

At least we were led to the brink by a conservative Christian, eh? Oh, and compassionate to-boot.

Never mind, I’m just retarded.
KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at January 26, 2006 7:47 AM
Comment #116929

Dave and Stephen,

The pattern, repeated again and again, and only with the opponents of this president, whether that be McCain, Kerry, or Murtha, suggests strategy, rather than spontaneous reactions. If so, then this is politics of the most despicable kind.

So it’s ok to do it to Bush because he did it first?

I’m not defending Bush because I don’t know whether he actually comitted any wrongdoing or not (and neither do you). I just don’t like people being accused of something without evedance.

Bush was honorably discharged, and yet there is no record of disiplinary action being taken against him. That means he either served the time he was supposed to and the records no longer exist, or he was illigally absent and disiplinary action was taken and the records of that no longer exist.
Since we don’t know either way, there is really nothing credible to accuse him with.

The only difference between you and me on this issue is that you are not willing to give Bush the benefit of a doubt because he has an R next to his name.

To intentionally set out to destroy military reputations for political gain, especially on behalf of those who did not subject themselves to combat for their country is the darkest of treachery.

Damn right. Of course you two are just as guilty of it as Bush is. But I guess it’s ok because he started it.

Posted by: TheTraveler at January 26, 2006 8:12 AM
Comment #116931

Dave and Stephen,

The pattern, repeated again and again, and only with the opponents of this president, whether that be McCain, Kerry, or Murtha, suggests strategy, rather than spontaneous reactions. If so, then this is politics of the most despicable kind.

So it’s ok to do it to Bush because he did it first?

I’m not defending Bush because I don’t know whether he actually comitted any wrongdoing or not (and neither do you). I just don’t like people being accused of something without evedance.

Bush was honorably discharged, and yet there is no record of disiplinary action being taken against him. That means he either served the time he was supposed to and the records no longer exist, or he was illigally absent and disiplinary action was taken and the records of that no longer exist.
Since we don’t know either way, there is really nothing credible to accuse him with.

The only difference between you and me on this issue is that you are not willing to give Bush the benefit of a doubt because he has an R next to his name.

To intentionally set out to destroy military reputations for political gain, especially on behalf of those who did not subject themselves to combat for their country is the darkest of treachery.

Damn right. Of course you two are just as guilty of it as Bush is. But I guess it’s ok because he started it.

Posted by: TheTraveler at January 26, 2006 8:15 AM
Comment #116937

Stephen,
“I believe that support for our troops does not equal submissiveness to our leaders. I believe that support means less lip service, and better provisions, equipment and benefits. I believe that means honest and trustworthy leadership when our leader guides us into battle. Maybe for you it’s not questioning the president, his decisions, or his war. For me, it’s trying to make sure the best is done for them, through them, and around them.”


Yet, you did not answer if you support their mission. Do you support their mission?! That question is of paramount importance, b/c that determines whether you’re for our troops or not. I support our troops, I support their mission, and yet, I still disagree with the Bush Administration on a bevy of issues; particularly the War issues. The difference is I’m not looking for bad to happen in the war in general just to blame the President. I’m not harping on the equipment and all that b/c, the people who do, most of them probably didn’t serve in the military; therefore, they wouldn’t even know how it works in the first place.

I was in the military in the early to mid 1990’s and I can tell you that rule # 1 is: A happy military is a bitchy military. Meaning, there’s always something to complain about and the military always does complain. The budgets are not that big, you always make do with what you have, so you get hand-me-downs and leftovers; that’s how it’s always been. And, in the case of our soldiers fighting in battle, some of the “body armour” would be too heavy and restrict their movement, resulting in fatality. This has been like this in every war, every conflict and every generation. It just doesn’t change. The military and veterans know what I’m talking about here; they might not like it, just as I don’t/didn’t like it, however they understand what I’m saying.


So Stephen, this is not partisan, this is about putting aside partisan feelings and looking at the real issuse at hand. Our troops are in a war and they are not coming home until they complete the mission. Now, do you support the mission or are you just wanting them to come home without completing their mission?! That’s an important question, now. Do you or don’t you support their mission?

Posted by: rahdigly at January 26, 2006 8:33 AM
Comment #116942

“Do you or don’t you support their mission?”

I do NOT support the mission nor the President on the Iraqi war. It was started in direct violation of UN law, and with false pretenses. This mission has been run with an amazing degree of incompetence. How can anyone support such a clusterf_ck?

I do support the troops, and now that we are in the mess we are in, we need to find some positive way to get out of it. However, the end result will probably be an anti-American theocracy that will do anything but bring stabilization to the region.

Secondly, I can not think of a more appropriate or meaningful time to show dissent for leadership as when OUR military is in armed conflict - risking their lives. I think it shows absolute honor for the people in our military by doing everything possible to ensure that they are risking and sacrificing their lives for the the highest degree of honesty and transparency.

I do NOT think that attacking war heroes records or attacking the freedoms our military are fighting to protect (NSA spying) shows anything but contempt for our soldiers and their sacrifices.

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 8:56 AM
Comment #116954

“Do you or don’t you support their mission?”

I do NOT support the mission nor the President on the Iraqi war. It was started in direct violation of UN law, and with false pretenses. This mission has been run with an amazing degree of incompetence. How can anyone support such a clusterf_ck?

I do support the troops, and now that we are in the mess we are in, we need to find some positive way to get out of it. However, the end result will probably be an anti-American theocracy that will do anything but bring stabilization to the region.

Secondly, I can not think of a more appropriate or meaningful time to show dissent for leadership as when OUR military is in armed conflict - risking their lives. I think it shows absolute honor for the people in our military by doing everything possible to ensure that they are risking and sacrificing their lives for the the highest degree of honesty and transparency.

I do NOT think that attacking war heroes records or attacking the freedoms our military are fighting to protect (NSA spying) shows anything but contempt for our soldiers and their sacrifices.

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 10:08 AM
Comment #116955

“You stupid Democrats, Quit talking horse-bunk and get a damn job, I’m sick to death of supporting your stupid liberal asses.”

Nope - don’t worry about my ass - it’s covered. I have something near by you can support though…

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 10:09 AM
Comment #116956

(sorry for the double post… that’s been happening a lot lately. I post, nothing is there, so I repost, and then both show up….???)

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 10:11 AM
Comment #116958

rahdigly
Sorry but you are wrong, basing your opinion on a few years in the military is laughable and not IMO enough to say that a person can’t support the military and not agree with the mission. What if the mission was secret? of course they would still be supported.
Supporting the military is making sure that there are enough men/woman to complete said mission with enough supply’s armor/food etc… and not holding a single militay person responsible for fighting in a war that they themselves did not start. Getting them in and out as quikly as possible.
Encouraging them to do there best JOB and praying that they come home safe.
I just resently saw a piece that said that most of the people (NON MLIITARY) going over and supporting the troops were not repulicans. I would go and I do not believe the President had reason to go over there and turn that country to rubble.
A person in no way has to agree with the reason for the war. Just simple and proactive support of each person over there.

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 26, 2006 10:14 AM
Comment #116964

oh wow
Willaim what swamp did you crawl out of ?
It is time for you to return to your den of fire.
Hell is freezing over.

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 26, 2006 10:22 AM
Comment #116965

gypsyirishgirl -

A better question would be: How does unquestioningly sending our troops into harms way equate to supporting the troops?

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 10:23 AM
Comment #116967

Tony:
I tried to do the math, There is NO answer.

P.S. nice thoughtful response, I just loose my temper.

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 26, 2006 10:28 AM
Comment #116973

gypsyirishgirl -

Just think about the source and it’s easy to ignore. I also think these type of people help to justify the LIBERAL perspective… (living proof of evolution, hopefully.)

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 10:35 AM
Comment #116976

William,
“You stupid Democrats, Quit talking horse-bunk and get a damn job, I’m sick to death of supporting your stupid liberal asses.”

Wow, this is incredible… I knew that the Republican party was the only party of morality, integrity, Christianity… but I was unaware that we were all unemployed too!

Personally, I am unemployed because I am increasing my education… getting my teaching license after earning my BA in Business when I got out of the military after 10 years.

Know what? Except for unemployment when laid off, I have not taken anything from anyone… I didn’t even take food stamps in which I was entitled to while I was in the military (I just love how you all support the military, my personal thanks for each meal missed… I hope that it didn’t “cost” you too much to “support” this “Liberal” while he was in the military.

Sir, with your faulty, unsubstantiated logic I would have to give you a D- on your post.

What? A D-? I must obviously be a political correctness freak!!!! How dare I?

Sir, you mention in one post that we don’t work… and in another you tell us to go back and pick up our shovels… those would be mutually exclusive.

Are you implying by chance too… that honest labor is somehow shameful? Sir, I cannot follow your reasoning.

Also sir, unreasoned support of military action is not American… people get upset when the Republicana are compared to the Nazis… but again, you prove the point. Just imagine… for one moment what WWII might have been like if the German people has stood up and said that Hitler was wrong? Imagine how many people (20 million?) if the people of Russia had been able to stand up to Stalin? Japanese against the military cabal in power?

Being unable to differentiate between supporting troops who are serving honorably and questioning the reasons and motivation of the political leaders who put them in harms way is intellectually lazy and, I believe, dishonest.

America did not grow to tbe nation it is by blindly accepting one person’s or one party’s views unquestioningly. That sir, would be more in the line of a national socialistic country… or possible a communistic system.

Why does the President believe that democracy witin Iraq is a good thing? So people with a dissenting voice can be freely heard without being attacked, tortured or killed. Are you saying that what the President is trying to attain is greater than what we should have in our own country?

If your blindess in the support of war is an indication of your patriotism… maybe we need less of it?

I am not saying that the war is right or wrong… what I am saying is your unreasoned response to some who might disagree makes me grateful that this is a two party system.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 26, 2006 10:46 AM
Comment #116993

Sanger-
Bush comes down in:
1)A military transport
2)in a military flightsuit
3)onto a military vessel
and
4)makes a speech about a military victory,

And you’re saying he’s not trying to connect his military past as a military pilot to his military victory?

The idea was to play on Bush’s putative past as a military pilot, and to connect that to his current victory. Bush was trading on his Vietnam era military career. More importantly, though, he was trading on the reliability of character. So examination of past experience in the military was of legitimate concern.

Its the manner of examination that bothers me. Facts are in short supply, and we are forced to rely on the anecdotes of people with serious conflicts of interest with telling us the truth. We have contradictory accounts, official documents giving other stories, and even medal citations for certain critics, undisputed to this point, that feature facts undermining their stories. We have chains of hearsay going from here to long-dead sources, conveniently out of reach of questioning.

Additionally, this happens every time a Democrat or Republican with Military experience gets up and opposes Bush, or his policies. It is not merely the defamation of reputations that concerns me. It is the fact-poor, interpretation-rich, politically-charged, targeted nature of these swiftboatings that bothers me. If there was real evidence, then as much as I would resent the people who organized to bring it out, I would be forced to concede the truth.

If we didn’t have people jumping to the worst conclusions without evidence to land on, I would be less skeptical. Take Max Cleland for instance. Ann Coulter accuses him of being drunk at the time of the grenade accident, of foolishly picking up a grenade he should have left on the ground, and of trading on his wounds as if they were gotten in combat. Never mind that he never claimed his amputations were the result of combat. Never mind that in his account, he was on his way to have that drink, not already finished with it, and under its influence. Never mind that he was unaware that somebody had tampered with the pin of the grenade, that he believed that the grenade had fallen off of his belt, and that he was trained and felt duty bound to collect that live ordinance, rather than let it maim or kill some other soldier unlucky enough to encounter it.

The reality here, is that we’re seeing a standard interpretation applied every time: That the targets are inept soldiers, cowards, betrayers, disloyal to their fellow man and their country, or at least questionable in that respect. Your own John McCain had his loyalty question on the basis of whether he might have been brainwashed in that prison camp, despite the extraordinary resistance he showed to them.

All in all, the attitude seems to be that the facts don’t matter, because it’s all incidental to proving “the truth” about Democrats who served their country. That “truth” being that they didn’t really serve their country, that they are no better or worse than all the Chickenhawks leading this country into war.

I believe that combat can be seen as a test of character, and that what a person does in combat can illustrate what they would do under pressure. Bush, under minimal pressure, having only to show up for (I think) weekly drills, and take physicals, failed to do that. Meanwhile, in that period, Max Cleland, John Murtha, and John Kerry faced combat, were fired upon, and had to kill enemy soldiers. While Kerry drew criticisms for what he did after the war, it would not be for thirty years that somebody would come along and claim that his entire career was a series of frauds. Likewise Murtha and Cleland.

I do want the press to report on the candidates, and see if there is something objectionable in their military careers. I do want there to be a debate about what constitutes honorable post war behavior, and althouth it saddens me to say this, I realize not everybody agrees with their actions. However, I do not want a cynical political agenda stripping the good name from those who the evidence has not stripped it away first. Honor should not be among the casualties of partisan politics.

I believe our politics are a means of expressing our will as a people, but that it can take on a life of its own, and be the source of great evil, as we forsake our virtues to win.

I believe our politics must be made to be an expression of our virtues, and that we should consider that our actions reflect on us as people. Take Katrina. The president should have reflected the pragmatic can-do virtues of America, and should have prepared with the foresight we expect of leaders in his position. That’s not some unfair partisan expectation, that is my expectation of the government fulfilling its obligations to the people.

Then was not the time to debate whether the federal government should have made up for failures at the state and local level. Then was the time to do what they could, to perform heroically. The shame of that time was that it became more important for our leaders to assign blame and give excuses rather than act.

When power only serves itself, that is the time when the powerful must be humbled, and brought low, and new leaders brought to the fore. If our parties are smart, they shall present those new leaders. If they wish to continue acting the fools, they can send the same weak willed politicians they have been sending forth.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 26, 2006 11:32 AM
Comment #117010

Rahdigly-
Before you ask me whether I supported their mission, you should have reviewed the multitude of articles I have written on the subject. The answer is yes: I do support the mission to create a permanent secure Democracy.

I do not support the current strategy, in terms of troop levels, and the individual missions, which according to sources I’ve heard from are centered on force protection- troops protecting themselves. It has created both a siege mentality and an inability to get the overall mission done: securing Iraq.

I would be willing to see higher casualties if the result were progress towards a secure Iraq. It is my opinion that we cannot secure Iraq with Iraqi troops, unless we are able to provide security for the troops to train under. Disruptions and attacks on the police and troop trainees are not helping us get this country independent of us.

I would not have our troops come home short of getting at least some stability in the region. Unfortunately, due to the mismanagement of this war, we are on the verge of losing our ability to operate at all, to keep troops in the field. Morale depends more upon local results than it does opinion back home. We see soldiers come back believing that the Iraqis deserve their chance for freedom, that it is right to fight for them and to make sure all this comes out right. But these same guys come back telling us that we lacked the manpower we need, and that they are uncertain about the future. We need to recognize, in our non-partisan perspective on this, that completing this mission does not equate to completing our way.

The problem comes when we define defeatism according to the success of one side’s plan. This is an administration that did not have a backup plan because they believed it was defeatist to consider that the plan may not work. That is the arrogance, the hubris that we must avoid in this debate- the notion that only we, the partisans, can save Iraq, and that we can do it without sacrifice.

In the end, I have always emphasized the practical side of this war over the political. The politics have gotten in the way every time we’ve tried to improve things. Success in the polls has trumped success in field, and we are suffering for that. If your people will consider people like me brothers in arms despite our opinions, and if my people do the same, then we can do better, or at least salvage what we got left. But as long as everything is about our leaders saving face, or following some misleading dichotomy of hawks and doves, we will be trapped in our prejudices, and will suffer for our presumption of the truth.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 26, 2006 11:54 AM
Comment #117022

The mission of a democracy in Iraq (especially one installed by military force) is a fools errand at best. Democracy is like love and religion, it only exists in a sincere form, or it doesn’t exist at all.

The idea of calling what we have established in Iraq as either a success or a democracy is disingenuous at best, at worst it is an outright lie.

Accepting the sacrifice of lives and limbs for the ‘mission’ in Iraq is simply living a treasonous deception and horrific waste disguised as ‘supporting our troops.’ This is the worst kind of irony.

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 12:22 PM
Comment #117154

Stephen,
“Before you ask me whether I supported their mission, you should have reviewed the multitude of articles I have written on the subject. The answer is yes: I do support the mission to create a permanent secure Democracy.”


Excellent! That is the first time on this blog that I remember someone with a “left” leaning view actually dissenting rather than Bush bashing. Thanks, Stephen. I actually agree with you; I too don’t like how the war strategy has been played out, thus far. I also think President Bush missed an opportunity 9/12/01 when he could have gone to Congress (with the American people firmly behind him) and asked to increase military budget and troop levels about 2 or 3% more. Our military (not to mention the FBI and CIA) have been downsized and depleted (since the Cold War ended) in the 1990’s.


Tony,
“The mission of a democracy in Iraq (especially one installed by military force) is a fools errand at best. Democracy is like love and religion, it only exists in a sincere form, or it doesn’t exist at all.”


Was the Revolutionary War a “sincere” form of democracy?


Posted by: rahdigly at January 26, 2006 4:23 PM
Comment #117173

I’m actually with William on this one. We should quit ‘supporting’ leeches in our society. I think the government should stop making any payments for services of any kind until we get our budget balanced and our debts covered by stashes of commodities. The poor will get along. The slumlords, the farmers, the grocers, the defense industry, the police, the medical, the pharmaceutical, and various and assundry businesses can just quit taking money from government agencies. The ‘working’ Republicans will be able to live well and prosper without the billions of tax dollars spent in this country.

The poor will learn to take the resources they need, like we did early in our Country’s history. The holders of vast wealth will be the indigenous peoples, e.g. “Indians”, and the hearty, self sufficient, risk taking pioneers can just take what they feel they need and create rules and laws that negate the rights of the Indians. Rise up Pioneers! Get off your butts and go work (meaning ‘get’ what you need to live.) Leave William to his own devices. He’s busy trying to pull the ladder up now that he’s reached his rung.

Obviously, William doesn’t look at government expenditures. If he had any economic sense and education, he could see that the Wealthy Republicans are the pigs feeding at his trough and the Poor (Democrats?) get very little slop.

Be careful, William, your wishes just may come true! Believe me when I tell you that it is the Republicans who would balk most and panic if the government largess was stoppered and their trough dried up!

Posted by: LibRick at January 26, 2006 4:42 PM
Comment #117194

William, your comments are no longer welcome here due to your violation of our policy. Your comments have been deleted.

Posted by: Watchblog Managing Editor at January 26, 2006 5:22 PM
Comment #117205

“Was the Revolutionary War a “sincere” form of democracy?”

Of course it was… please, tell me the connection….

Posted by: tony at January 26, 2006 6:04 PM
Comment #117296

Will William are you going to join uncle Sam
army, uncle sam wants you!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: JS at January 26, 2006 10:02 PM
Comment #117313

William-
The right rewards people for being wrapped up in their own little worlds. God, you fear us so much, simply for not agreeing with you! You fear that if somebody dissents we could lose a war. I think if we lose this war, it will be for precisely the opposite reason. This is a Democracy. You don’t tell people to support something, you ask ‘em.

If you don’t tell people the truth when you ask them for support, or if you alienate them and insult them, then ask them, you’re not going to have much luck.

Ever wonder why nobody suddenly goes “oh, I know, being a Liberal is wrong!” after reading your stuff? Some of us have a different idea of what might be necessary to defend this country and defeat our enemies in Iraq. Now, you suppose instantly that we’re wrong, and instantly then believe that being so wrong any application of our ideas would be the end of the world. So, you come out with those well-mannered monlogues of yours.

The worlds bigger than you or me, and it matters less who thinks they’re right than who does right. Sometimes, that means correcting a mistake, and sometimes that means keeping an open mind. That to me is essential liberal philosophy. This world’s fast evolving, and if we want to be capable of interfacing with it, and keeping our values, our lives, and our economy going, we have to evolve in response to it to fulfill our needs and shape our characters for the best.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 26, 2006 11:55 PM
Comment #117326

Rahdigly-
This isn’t something new. In my history on this site, going back to early 2004, this has been my position, and the Democrat Mainstream has not being far off of my line.

You speak of Bush Bashing, but how about Liberal Bashing? How about the persistent implication by Bush since early 2002 that those left of center in America aren’t worthy to aid in its defense, and the planning of its policies?

I myself would not have signed up for all this, and taken the time over the last two years to deal with this, had I not felt that the mission and its strategy had dangerously parted ways.

As for military budget, it’s gone up by about 100 billion dollars as I understand it, but most is going to those neat little toys you see on the Discovery Channel. What you have with Rumsfeld at the helm is somebody who will not budge on having our army be light and mobile, even when the requirements are that it be the opposite. You can also speak with Cheney and his associates, as this downsizing was in part their idea, and an understandable one at that. After all, we had just won the Cold War.

I think we have to consider that people on both sides have contributed to this, most of the time without real malice on the subject, out of a misguided sense of war and/or peace. Few thought we’d be fighting a war like this, and none of those properly considered what that would require.

We have to recognize that few Americans really want to lose this. The trouble is, we went far too long with big promises in the air but little progress, with mounting costs in every sense of the word. That’s a recipe for discouragement. It’s not the Democrats fault for point these facts out. Bush could have been more honest, more forthcoming, but he chose to try and fight this war on his base’s support. In the end, that’s become just about all he has left.

That’s no way to fight a war. You have to convince more than your base, because they are inevitably a minority. Fighting a war off the support of a minority is a scary thing for a majority in a Democracy, as are any such arbitrary impositions of power by a small group. And it’s impossible to unite people with stereotyped arguments of any kind.

People need to know that we’re in this together, but that means a reciprocal relationship. Americans must admit that greatest power is to be part of the consensus, and the best way to get that consensus is to earn it with fact and persuasive dialogue. The alternatives just get people more mad.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 27, 2006 12:16 AM
Comment #117448

JJ,

You can’t be serious when you said John Kerryy is a ‘War Hero’, right? It seems like to be a Liberal, one has to be quite gullible as well! :-)

Posted by: jane at January 27, 2006 6:50 AM
Comment #117481

how many times have you been shot at in the name of freedom? how many purple hearts do you have JJ!!!! How will you treat these soiders in the future. Will they not be “WAR HERO”.

Posted by: april at January 27, 2006 9:09 AM
Comment #117491

Jane-
Kerry was decorated for his bravery, so refering to him as a War Hero is consistent with the evidence at hand. Why else the the Swiftvets try and say those medals were frauds? They didn’t want to spoil the myth that liberals don’t love their country, and aren’t as brave as Republicans when it comes to defending this country. It’s long past time that we recognize that our selections at the ballot box have little to do with the virtues and weakness of our character.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 27, 2006 9:40 AM
Comment #117507

SORRY JJ, My last blog was ment for Jane not you.

Posted by: april at January 27, 2006 10:12 AM
Comment #117541

Stephen,

“Why else the the Swiftvets try and say those medals were frauds? They didn’t want to spoil the myth that liberals don’t love their country, and aren’t as brave as Republicans when it comes to defending this country.”


Making an accusations against the swiftboat vets; saying they are making the case to show that republicans are more brave than democrats, is just plain wrong and inconsistent with what the Swiftboat Vets have been speaking out against. They’ve been fighting Kerry ever since he trashed his medals and “lied” about the Swiftboat Vets “taking part in free fire zones, burning villages and being in Cambodia Christmas day 1968”.


“You speak of Bush Bashing, but how about Liberal Bashing? How about the persistent implication by Bush since early 2002 that those left of center in America aren’t worthy to aid in its defense, and the planning of its policies?”


Bush bashing has (clearly) ignored the real enenmies and threats; just look at how everyone still is bashing Bush, and yet you have the next Hitler trying to get nukes in Iran. Liberal bashing is just calling “a spade a spade”. So, you’ll forgive me if I don’t sob with that one. All the hate against Bush and America, some by our own people rather than the enemy, and you worry about “Liberal bashing”, that’s a good. one.

Posted by: rahdigly at January 27, 2006 11:31 AM
Comment #117578

Jane,
Speaking as a vet, I have never appreciated a person or party believing that they were the only ones concerned about me.

I am a liberal… but to the extremists that sell their books or make their money on the talk radio circuit I am a traitor, terrorist supporter or a coward.

I am serious here. When people thank me for my service I cringe… Why? Because I know that their sincere thanks is dependant on my beliefs in their particular cause. Whether it be Republican or Democrat.

I served 10 years and in all those years I met many wonderful, caring, intelligent and motivate people. They knew what America stood for and had signed up to protect that. They did not enlist to support the republicans of the democrats. They understood that what they were willing to kill or die for was a IDEA.

They understood that the idea of freedom of speech was much more important for the unpopular speech. Popular speech rarely, if ever, requires protection.

That it is our government, with its constitutionally created form of checks and balances inherient in the shared power and specific responsibilities that are what makes us who we are.

What they are dying for right now is the creation of a government in a country with 2 large and distinct groups of peoples. Plus, for those not aware a much smaller group… Christians.

Just as in America, one political party passing themsevlves off as the “Pro-government” or “Pro-Patriot” or “Pro-Christian” or “Pro-just about anything” illustrates to America, the world and Iraq which has no history of tolerance for opposing views that it is an all or nothing game. The party of the Shiites, Sunnis or Kurds must win! Because? If the others win then they will abuse the power because they are the only ones that are “Pro…”

How much trust does that instill if your party does not win? How much support of the enemy does it give to believe and espouse that the other party is an enemy… not a political opponent with differnt, valid views… but wrong, immoral and the enemy?

That someone of a different vision of where and how America should grow isn’t immoral, sinful, or a traitor. Those are deviseve methods used by paid political advisors on both sides to re-elect the person paying them.

With each election, no one came to me or any other person in the military and asked us if we were willing to serve under the new administration. No one would have ever thought to ask, because we were serving a country, not a politican or political party that happened to be in control at the moment.

We KNEW that Americans cared for us. Not each and every one… but again, we knew that it was the unpopular speech and ideas that needed protecting. We were adults, well trained, intelligent and knew what we were there for. We were not children that needed to be “protected from those bad words” nor did we need patronizing support. That, ma’am is the definition of a professional.

And, people in the American service are the proudest, most intelligent, best equiped and trained, most professional warriors that have ever served!

Possibly to avoid feelings of embarassment to a person you wish to honor it would be best if you ask a few questions before doing so… just to make sure that they are still worthy of your thanks.

A few suggestons?

Veterans: Do you support the President and his decisions leading up to and during the war. Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Teachers: Do you teach evolution, multiculturalism, acceptance of homosexuality as a valid “life style”? Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Police: Do you believe that criminals have too many “rights” and it is the democrats who love and coddle the criminals? Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Lawyers: Are you a bottom feeder that defends guilty people? Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Doctors and Nurses: Do you support my beliefs on abortion, birth control and life support for people in a vegatative state?Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Firefighters and Paramedics: Do you support his efforts today? Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the democratic party?

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 27, 2006 12:57 PM
Comment #117783

Rahdigly-
It’s not an unfounded accusation. One of his accusers said that the gunfire described in Kerry’s commendation wasn’t real. Not only do others contradict his story, but his own citation for a medal, which he had not questioned in the decades since, describes things that way as well. Many of these men praised Kerry right up to this last election.

As for the atrocities and intrusions described there? Kerry’s memory may have been faulty about where he was on Christmas day, but it’s revisionist to discount the facts about how we operated our efforts against the North Vietnamese, and to deny the existence of free-fire zones, much less the notion that no American would intrude on the territory of Cambodia. It’s historical record that Nixon lead an offensive into Cambodia in pursuit of the Ho Chi Minh trail.

I’m sick of hearing about Bush Bashing. I show you evidence that what I’m saying is true, and still, you give me that crap. I document things, and give you links, and all I get back is this melodramatic appeal to pity. Oh, poor Bush, criticized for making one mistake after another.

You guys are building another apocalyptic tyrant up, saying that this time, here’s the heir to Hitler. I think that’s giving this guy too much damn credit. I’m not saying we shouldn’t be wary or unprepared to deal with this guy in case he turns truly nasty, I just think you people are looking for another action movie war. What, do you think this time, the real world won’t complicate your nice neat little story?

Calling a spade, a spade. What you do you know about us? I know that when people were thinking about where to go after Afghanistan, my thinking more encompassed putting the heat on the proven terrorists states of Syria and Iran. Iraq seemed a non sequitur to me.

You talk about hatred of America, but what do you know? Truth is, Americans are Americans, and you’ll find that many are much more sophisticated in their outlook.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 28, 2006 2:29 AM
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