Thursday, September 09, 2004

More on our disgraceful VP

Plenty of articles, editorials, and whatnot on El Vice Presidente and his shameful remarks yesterday equating a victory for Kerry as a form of victory for terrorists (or would lead to another attack). The NYT, no surprise, has an editorial today condeming it as, yes..."disgraceful." Maureen Dowd (yes - I know...some people can't stand her, but that doesn't mean her arguments are invalid) has an oped in the Times as well, calling the VP's statement (like El Presidente's father's infamous quote): "Message: You die."
Without Zell Miller around to out-crazy him, and unplugged after a convention that tried to "humanize'' him with grandchildren, horses and wifely anecdotes about his inability to dance the twist, Mr. Cheney is back as Terrifier in Chief.
In the Washington Post, there is an oped by Richard Cohen which includes something I also thought of when I read the story yesterday:
And I say that when Dick Cheney warned that the election of John Kerry would increase the risk of a terrorist attack, I immediately thought of Joseph Welch, the patrician Boston attorney who confronted Sen. Joseph McCarthy back in 1954 and asked, "Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?" The answer in McCarthy's case was no. It is no different with Cheney.
Adam Nagourney covers the subject in his "Political Memo" bit in the NYT today, discussing whether the VP's claim goes over the line and even questions whether the comment might actually alienate the voters he's trying to court.
In one sign that the answer to that question may be yes, Mr. Cheney's aides were quick to say that he had not meant to be quite so direct in his remarks in Des Moines on Tuesday when he said: "The danger is that we'll get hit again and we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating." A review of the videotape of his appearance in Des Moines suggests that his remark was spontaneous and unscripted. There was some, though not much, cringing in Republican circles at the image of Mr. Cheney on television, characteristically unsmiling, describing a Kerry presidency in such apocalyptic terms.
Also interesting to note that the moment on videotape was far from being "out of context," as his handlers claimed and that the Bush campaign, despite its denials, seems to be making that the crux of why he should be re-elected. Even more important was this little nugget, buried deeper in the article, but supported by a number of more recent polls and criticism of the first post-convention polls that showed a large Bush lead:
There was no shortage of speculation among Democrats about why Mr. Cheney was being so harsh. Could post-convention White House polls now be finding that the 11-point Bush lead reported by Time and Newsweek had indeed been exaggerated, leaving Mr. Bush without the upper hand he had hoped for? Could the White House be trying to shift attention away from new reports this week about Mr. Bush's absences in the National Guard?
The Zogby poll results seem to indicate a tied race. So does Gallup. And in the electoral college race, Kerry still has something of an advantage in the "battleground states." Plus...interesting that the subject of El Presidente and his "service" in the Guard should be coming up lately...there are TONS of articles on that subject in multiple news sources today. The Times has a partial front on the story, saying that:
The documents, obtained by the "60 Minutes" program at CBS News from the personal files of the late Lt. Col. Jerry B. Killian, Mr. Bush's squadron commander in Texas, suggest that Lieutenant Bush did not meet his performance standards and received favorable treatment
Wait a second! I thought Bush released all his records. Oh, wait...I forgot...he's a lying weasel.
Colonel Killian also wrote in a memo that his superiors were forcing him to give Lieutenant Bush a favorable review, but that he refused.
Oh...THAT kind of favorable treatment! Even better, the NYT reports this morning that the White House has gone on the offensive against a Kitty Kelly book on Bush and his personal life that hasn't even come out yet. Didn't these guys learn from the Fox News/Bill O'Reilly hysteria last year over Franken's book that this stuff only peaks even more interest? I mean...this book has some juicy stuff in it and everyone knows Kelly isn't the greatest asset on "facts," but...does this really help stop sales?
In a back and forth yesterday, Sharon Bush, the former wife of the president's brother Neil and a central source for the book, issued a pre-emptive retraction after a British newspaper printed an article on the book, quoting Ms. Bush as saying that Mr. Bush used cocaine at Camp David while his father was in office.
Oooooo! The c-word...again.

Look. It's no secret that I don't like El Presidente. I like his "handlers" in the administration even less. These people will say or do anything to keep power. Is that no clear at this point?


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