Tuesday, August 10, 2004

what the . . . part 2

my colleague the blaster is spot-on with his frustration with our man kerry. this issue has left the candidate painted into an uncomfortable corner, and blunted his ability to speak with strength on a defining issue of this election. however, that's not to say that this recent affirmation was the wrong one.

again, here we confront the bedeviling nature of politics in america. kerry's position is nuanced, it is complex, and it is in many ways convenient. it requires a more complete understanding of diplomacy, international relations, and actual history than most american voters begin to approach. in today's NYT story, kerry notes - "I believe it's the right authority for a president to have," which is a classic kerry very specific, analyzed and entirely accurate statement. kerry goes on to repeat his lines about the rush to war, no plan for peace, etc... which is, for all its truth and accuracy, a lukewarm argument in the public eye.

but here's the problem. imagine a scenario by which kerry REJECTED his vote. "if i had known, i wouldnt have supported the war." now sure, that makes sense to many moderate democrats who feel the same way. but the door this opens for bush is a significant one - suddenly, kerry is on record as 'regretting' the war. that is, bush can stand across from him at a debate and plausibly make the statement 'saddam was a maniacal dictator with ties to terror, and we took him out. my opponent regrets that war and regrets that he's gone. i dont. i'm glad he's gone.'

now lets be clear - is this argument reasonable ? no. sensible ? no. a remotely accurate interpretation of reality or events ? clearly, no.

and is the undecided voter remotely capable of that distinction ? you know my answer.

- LH


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