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August 13, 2004

Comments

Tom Bowler

Isn't it funny in an annoying way that the point of Lord Kerry's Christmas in Cambodia stories is to accuse somebody else of dishonesty. Probably not the link you were looking for Tom, but I wanted to make the point.

robert0

Right. We all know Kerry might not telling the exact truth about events that happened 30 years ago, even though there is no hard evidence out there that proves he is lying. That said, what's so good about GW.

I mean, in one short presidency you've got:

I attacked and took over two countries.

I spent the U.S. surplus and bankrupted the US Treasury.

I shattered the record for the biggest annual deficit in history (not easy!).

I set an economic record for the most personal bankruptcies filed in any 12 month period.

I set all-time record for the biggest drop in the history of the stock market.

I am the first president in decades to execute a federal prisoner.

I am the first president in US history to enter office with a criminal record.

In my first year in office I set the all-time record for most days on vacation by any president in US history (tough to beat my dad's, but I did).

After taking the entire month of August off for vacation, I presided over the worst security failure in US history.

I set the record for most campaign fund raising trips by any president in US history.

In my first two years in office over 2 million Americans lost their job.

I cut unemployment benefits for more out-of-work Americans than any other president in US history.

I set the all-time record for most real estate foreclosures in a 12-month period.

I appointed more convicted criminals to administration positions than any president in US history.

I set the record for the fewest press conferences of any president, since the advent of TV.

I signed more laws and executive orders amending the Constitution than any other US president in history.

I presided over the biggest energy crises in US history and refused to intervene when corruption was revealed.

I cut health care benefits for war veterans.

I set the all-time record for most people worldwide to simultaneously take to the streets to protest me (15 million people), shattering the record for protest against any person in the history of mankind.

I dissolved more international treaties than any president in US history.

I've made my presidency the most secretive and unaccountable of any in US history.

Members of my cabinet are the richest of any administration in US history. (The poorest multimillionaire, Condoleeza Rice, has a Chevron oil tanker named after her).

I am the first president in US history to have all 50 states of the Union simultaneously struggle against bankruptcy.

I presided over the biggest corporate stock market fraud in any market in any country in the history of the world.

I am the first president in US history to order a US attack and military occupation of a sovereign nation, and I did so against the will of the United Nations and the vast majority of the international community.

I have created the largest government department bureaucracy in the history of the United States, called the "Bureau of Homeland Security"(only one letter away from BS).

I set the all-time record for biggest annual budget spending increases, more than any other president in US history (Ronnie was tough to beat, but I did it!!).

I am the first president in US history to compel the United Nations remove the US from the Human Rights Commission.

I am the first president in US history to have the United Nations remove the US from the Elections Monitoring Board.

I removed more checks and balances, and have the least amount of congressional oversight than any presidential administration in US history.

I rendered the entire United Nations irrelevant.

I withdrew from the World Court of Law.

I refused to allow inspectors access to US prisoners of war and by default no longer abide by the Geneva Conventions.

I am the first president in US history to refuse United Nations election inspectors access during the 2002 US elections.

I am the all-time US (and world) record holder for most corporate campaign donations.

The biggest lifetime contributor to my campaign, who is also one of my best friends, presided over one of the largest corporate bankruptcy frauds in world history (Kenneth Lay, former CEO of Enron Corporation).

I spent more money on polls and focus groups than any president in US history.

I am the first president to run and hide when the US came under attack (and then lied,saying the enemy had the code to Air Force 1)

I am the first US president to establish a secret shadow government.

I took the world's sympathy for the US after 9/11,and in less than a year made the US the most resented country in the world (possibly the biggest diplomatic failure in US and world history).

I am the first US president in history to have a majority of the people of Europe (71%) view my presidency as the biggest threat to world peace and stability.

I changed US policy to allow convicted criminals to be awarded government contracts.

I set the all-time record for the number of administration appointees who violated US law by not selling their huge investments in corporations bidding for government contracts.

I have removed more freedoms and civil liberties for Americans than any other president in US history. In a little over two years.

I have created the most divided country in decades, possibly the most divided that the US has been since the Civil War.

I entered office with the strongest economy in US history and in less than two years turned every single economic category heading straight down.

John
I am the first president in US history to refuse United Nations election inspectors access during the 2002 US elections.

ROFL. Anyone else see what's so funny about this statement?

Bostonian

Robert0, you should realize we've all gotten quite accustomed to the redirection attempts of the left. If you want to argue all those points, fine, but respect the owner of this blog, and do it somewhere else.

GT

Tom,

You say that "what Kerry remembers isn't always what is true, but it is self-serving."

How is that different from any other politician?

John

Btw, robert0, I've read that whole list before.

It's a great mix between truths, half-truths, lies, obvious lies, and a whole lot of things that would be true if you removed them from the context of the presidency.

For example,

I set the all-time record for most real estate foreclosures in a 12-month period.

Regardless of what you may think, GWB *is not a banker*. He *does not forclose on real estate*. So he *did not set the all-time record for most real estate forclosures in a 12-month period*. How hard is this, really?

stan

It would seem robert0 buys the lunacy of the democratunderground. 'Tis a shame....

Robert Blakely

If George Bush had the power to do the things you have accused him of he would be God, not president. The list of grievances is impressive even if fallacious. I wonder how Clinton would have stood up to your jaundiced eye. I presume he would have been as pure as the driven snow!
So much for intelligent accuracy!

Pouncer

" I dissolved more international treaties than any president in US history.

I rendered the entire United Nations irrelevant.

I withdrew from the World Court of Law."

Were but it so! For these accomplishments alone, I would forgive all else, and forswear all other candidates of either party.

Trevor Saccucci

Nice talking points, robert0. I suspect they spent just enough time in your brain to pass from your eyes to your keyboard. But can you think about them long enough to provide citations for them?

More to the point, you're also off-topic, and shouldn't be putting them in this thread.

If you feel your talking points are important enough to tell the world about, provide citations for them, and do it on your own blog or in an appropriate thread on someone else's blog.

Matthew Cromer

Robert,

You do realize that just about everything on that list is a lie or a distortion, right? If so, you are a deceitful liar, just like your candidate. If not, you are a deluded whackjob.

Let's just start with the deficit. The only reasonable way to evaluate a deficit is as a percentage of GDP. This is because the economy grows over time, and because of inflation. The deficit is 80% because of the Clinton bubble bursting and the subsequent loss of income of stock investors who were therefore not paying taxes on that income. So obviously your whole arguement on this one point is at best a distortion and more accurately a deceit.

I can do a similar analysis on most of the rest of your DU talking points, but frankly it's a waste of my time.

Terry

Way to go, robert0.

You cut-'n-pasted a 2 year old list that was icredibly flawed when it was originally floating about as email spam and was thoroughly debunked 2 years ago and didn't even update the points that have changed in the intervening 2 years.

Very persuasive.

Frank IBC

Sorry to respond to the Red Herring Robot, but I thought these were kinda funny...

>> I am the first president in decades to execute a federal prisoner.

>> I rendered the entire United Nations irrelevant.

>> I withdrew from the World Court of Law.

I'm glad to see you've managed to throw in a few compliments, with all your criticisms. :P

>> "I am the first US president to establish a secret shadow government."

Well, other presidents had established "SECRET shadow governments", we wouldn't know about them, would we? Maybe they just did a better job of keeping them secret, hmmmm??

Another "Cut & Paster"...sigh...

Trevor Saccucci

On-topic: I first read about the Doug Brinkley Kerry Hagiography 2.0 yesterday. This story is becoming more grotesque and farcical with every passing day. I'm surprised that Brinkley is willing to flush his reputation down the toilet by lending credibility to the Kerry-Cambodia Chronicles - but I suspect that he'll end up eating the loan.

So, what's Brinkley's next project? A biography of Baron von Munchausen?

drive-by

My First Lie, And How I Got Out Of It
http://www.mtwain.com/My_First_Lie,_And_How_I_Got_Out_Of_It/0.html
-- Mark Twain.

AB

Robert, I think what you're missing is that Conservatives LIKE the idea of America as a big blowhard bully. They like asskicking and nametaking. The country of Jefferson and Lincoln to them should give way to the country of Gingrich, Cheney and DeLay. Those are their great thinkers.

The thing is, yesterday when Cheney mocked Kerry for using the word "sensitive" (leaving out all the other decriptives Kerry used), the commentators rightly clarified that Bush himself had used the exact same word in the same context only a day or so later. So does that make Bush a girly man also?

The Conservatives may have used up their last cards with the Florida debacle. People know now how dirty they play, and they're hip to the way they manipulate and misrepresent. It's getting harder to pull the wool over peoples eyes. And if the election looks fraudulent again, there may be true civil unrest over it. Florida is leaning heavier each day towards Kerry. It will be very suspect if it suddenly tilts to Bush at the 11th hour.

megapotamus

Ah, Florida. The Dems, yet again, prepare to fight the last war. Good luck with that.

Dan

AB -

Are you suggesting Lincoln wasn't an "asskicker" (and a Republican, by the way)?

Ask the folks in Georgia.

Robert Speirs

As a close observer of the Florida 2000 election, I don't know what AB is talking about. Except that, contrary to law, about 6000 felons were permitted to vote. Gee, I wonder who they voted for? And that all the "disputed" ballots were in Democratic controlled counties. Where all the election officials were Democrats. So maybe AB should go look up the facts.

moptop

AB doesn't care a hang for facts, but here is one. Two years after having the election 'stolen from them', Florida voters elected W's brother Jeb governor, in a landslide. Surprising even Terry McAliff (ph).

Crank

Don't feed the trolls!

Gerard Van der  Leun

Not typed in. Just a swift cut and paste from somewhere else. Not even a whiff of originality. Probably got it hot-keyed and just flits about depositing it as it pleases. Kind of disgusting when you think about it.

Dan

"It will be very suspect if it [Florida]suddenly tilts to Bush at the 11th hour".

Of course it won't be suspect if the homeless are given cigarettes to vote, or illegal aliens vote multiple times, if polls in Democratic precincts are left open all night, if Democrat operatives enter voting booths to "help" people mark their ballots, if convicted felons vote, and on and on...

soybomb

Ignore the robert0's of the world. They want you to be distracted so kerry can get away with his blantant, obvious lies. That is the only way Kerry can survive. He and his supporters must, must keep talking about anything and everything that doesn't deal with his Senate record and Vietnam service beyond the Rambo in a boat meme.

AB

I'm always amused when Republicans try to claim Lincoln as their own, and try to portray him as a butch Rambo type. Have any of them actually read his tortured, heartbroken, eloquent discussions of the tragedy that truly did force itself into his Presidency, that he tried so valiantly to avoid and that haunted him day and night? I doubt it.

To insinuate that Abraham Lincoln would recognize the Republican party of Bush and Gingrich would be an insult to the Great Emancipator if it weren't so patently ridiculous.

TexasToast

Back on topic (Your spot, you get to choose the topic. I’m actually curious if there are bots out there that send out competing talking points lists to Blog Comments. Anyone know?)

I’ve got to hand it to you, Tom. You have managed to combine a “whopper” told by a vet, a misstatement on a website and in press releases about what years Kerry served in the Naval Reserve that has since been corrected, and his membership in a organization containing some overzealous nut-cases into “… a voyage of discovery about John Kerry’s past.”. And by golly, you are being fair about it by saying that Kerry was actually opposed to political assassination!

Stir the pot ... and praise Caesar while you’re at it. Very Shakespearian.


The Bush administration has been criticized for stretching the facts to “connect the dots” between Iraq and Al Q, but that argument was more convincing than this one – unless, of course, you are already a true believer. The administration’s dots were not on the same page, but yours aren’t even in the same book - - no, let me correct that, the same library. Oh well, I can take solace in the realization that you would be zealously defending this administration’s record and giving me reasons to vote FOR this president instead of constructing reasons to vote AGAINST the other guy – that is, if there WERE any compelling reasons to vote FOR this president.

Brainster

Tom, looks like something's wrong with the March timeline, since Drudge says they are trying to place the Cambodian incursion in January. First guess is somebody on his boat in March who supports his candidacy, won't back up the Cambodia story, so they are trying to walk it backwards. I've been combing through the Brinkley book trying to come up with a January timeline, cast of characters, etc. This post will continue to be updated throughout the day.

Tim

The off-topic, "look over there", responses seem to speak to the obvious strength of these charges.

Kerry's Vietnam strategy was an opportunistic farce from the beginning - but it was a lie he has been preening and nurturing for decades and had come to define his persona.

"I look forward to that debate, when John Kerry, a war hero with a chest full of medals, is standing next to George Bush, a man who was AWOL in the Alabama National Guard." - Terry McAuliffe

You've come a long way, baby.

Frank Brown

I am in Florida and there is a worry here about Bush winning. This medicare scare crap wrapped around cheap Canadian Drugs has really hurt Bush as my father and others only hear that as they are on fixed incomes. Also, you have to understand people from N.J. and NY. retire here because we have no income tax and they vote democratic even though they like not having to pay taxes...go figure.

Ernest Brown

ToastedbyTexas,

The reason we're giving Kerry the business is the blatent media hypocrisy surrounding the "BUSH/AWOL" versus the "Kerry lies his fundament off" stories. In addition, Kerry has cynically used his Vietnam experience to deflect any attention for what he did politically for the next 33 years. A genuine discussion of Kerry's merits as a statesman, plus him running on his actual Senate voting record, would see him draw McGovern/Mondale numbers in the polls. This is exactly why the mainstream press is trying so hard to ignore this story:

MR. THOMAS: "There's one other base here, the media. Let's talk a little media bias here. The media, I think, wants Kerry to win and I think they're going to portray Kerry and Edwards I'm talking about the establishment media, not Fox. They're going to portray Kerry and Edwards as being young and dynamic and optimistic and there's going to be this glow about them, collective glow, the two of them, that's going to be worth maybe 15 points."

Evan Thomas, Assistant Managing Editor of Newsweek
July 10, 2004

http://www.wusatv9.com/insidewashington/insidewashington_article.aspx?storyid=31231

drive-by

" FOR this president instead of constructing reasons to vote AGAINST "

One person constructed this imbroglio, JFK and his PT-109... err Swift boat ad where he used the images almost exclusively of those opposed to his candidacy in support of it.

Nice try, but I won't be done laughing at you Democrats for some time.

AB

It's also funny that the people saying "look over here at Kerry's Cambodia story, not at Najaf or the deficit or the jobs numbers" are the ones who accuse others of avoiding the debate.

I know the Republican plan is to win this election through Mock and Guffaw, but y'all might want to rethink the possiblity that the American public is wise to it now.

drive-by

As for Florida, I have seen those lying ads. Bush has actually caved on the Canadian prescription thing. Which as a free market believer, I think he should have done right away. As soon as the US starts buying all its drugs from Canada, Canada will have no choice but to make it illegal themselves, or to pay higher prices for the drugs. The US should not be carrying the drug company's water on this. The Bush admin has recognized this.

drive-by

Najaf...??? What is the issue there? It is being resolved by force. So what?

The deficit? What is it in terms of historical trends in percent of GDP, which is just about the only accurate measure? Which way is it going now? Up or down?

The jobs numbers are weird. The household survey shows a completely different picture than the payroll number, one that is much better for Bush. The payroll number does not count new businesses started, which BTW is how people get ahead in this country. Of course, which number do you think the press, which will not even acknowledge the admitted fact that Kerry is a liar use?

As far as I am concerned, a candidate who makes up his past is probably unstable and unfit for the job.

Even if Bush was AWOL, which is just invidious speculation on the part of the left anyway, he has already admitted to having wasted that part of his life, and does not base his claim to the presidency on it.

drive-by

One more thing AB

http://www.gallup.com/content/?ci=12694

Maybe there just isn't a majority of mono-manaical Bush haters out there?

drive-by

And if Viet Nam doesn't matter, why does Kerry bring it up at every opportunity? He obviously thinks it's important.

Trevor Saccucci

TexasToast:

Do your thought processes on this topic go further than insulting your host on his own bandwidth? Would it be beyond you to make some substantive points other than generating bitstream slobber?

I noticed that the differences between your comment of 8:19 AM and robert0's cut-and-paste screed are that you started off on-topic, and that you actually seem to have generated the verbiage of your talking points yourself, even if they aren't otherwise substantive. But then you go off-topic like robert0 and have to start attacking George Bush.

And that's my point here. You know you can't mount a credible defense of Kerry's fabulism; Doug Brinkley's an experienced professional writer and historian, and even his efforts to do so look like a pathetic joke.

If Kerry really believes his Cambodia nonsense, he's got some serious unresolved mental health issues. If he's knowingly lied about it he's shown himself to be a shameless opportunist who besmirched the reputations of his fellow servicemen as an antiwar activist for political expediency, and then appropriated the legacies of those better men when it was expedient to have a a daring and courageous war record to run for President on.

I find either alternative grotesque and unacceptable in anyone who would hold the office of POTUS. John Kerry lacks either the integrity or the mental stability to be a decent US President.

bob

I would like to comment on the "Kerry Christmas in Cambodia" story.

The western, or Roman, christian churches celebrate christmas on 25 december. The eastern, or Orthodox, christian churches celebrate christmas on 7 January.

It may be that senator Kerry was with a group of orthodox christian Cambodians for christmas 1968. This is not likely as less than 1% of cambodians are western christians, and there are no orthodox churches in the country. However, it is possible.

A lucid and interesting discussion of the old calendar can be found at www.goarc.org/en/ourfaith/

A detailed breakdown of Cambodian religious affiliation can be found at
www.ksife.co./profiles/p_code2/1883.html

rynich

Robert0,
How would you know a more secretive Administration existed, hense the word "Secret".
I do recall a historical event called the "bay of pigs" and who was the Pres. then and under what party. Second, I think you need get a better understanding of the history of Serbia before you make statements that the Current Pres. attacked a sovereign nation. I believe Clinton did it first with Afganistan, serbia, and IZ.
Third, you need to look into who is invested in mining companies that are involved in Africa, such as those based out of Arkansas. I Think you will find the Clintons, Reno, Allbright, and others invested in these companies that have made the heart of Africa a mess.
I don't think you truly know history well enough to claim that all these actions are first andonly's as you have claimed, which makes you look like fool and tool of someone elses propaganda. I would suggest that you read a few books on the history and world events that occured during WW I.

AB

Well actually Najaf is not being resolved at all. If you look at what's happening, there are riots in five major cities, Allawi is capitulating as he must, and the US Army is standing around unable to enter the mosque. Just another day in liberated Iraq. Can they kill Sadr? No, it will provoke rioting. Can they capture him? Not without desecrating the mosque. Can they send the Iraqi army in to do the dirty work? Not unless they want the people to turn against the fledgling army.

Iraq is a mess. Nothing was done right there. In fact, nothing was done with any "sensitivity" to the indigenous culture of the people we were supposedly liberating. We are pouring money into a rathole and praying day and night our kids don't end up dead. No one seems to have a handle on it. No one seems to know what the hell we are doing there or how we are going to accomplish it. The President keeps saying "I know how to do it" but where's the evidence? We're just lurching from crisis to crisis and creating 5 insurgents for every 1 we kill.

Bush's own father warned against trying to invade and occupy a Muslim nation. Too bad his boy didn't listen. Too intent on trying to prove he had bigger balls.

George

Getting back to the original topic, there is
a fourth quick example of a Kerry Vietnam
statement that is easily verified as false -- throwing his medals at the U.S. Capitol. Here is a good summary:
http://frankwarner.typepad.com/free_frank_warner/2004/04/john_kerry_in_1.html

Tim

More lies from Kerry's Band of Brothers?

AB, here's a thread on Najaf where you can comment on that. Here's an older thread about the lower deficit projection you can comment on.

kingwolf

RobertO's list is a recycled cut and paste list. Nice try, moron. Detailed and documented rebuttals to similar versions of that list can be found at http://qando.net/archives/002204.htm; http://mensnewsdaily.com/archive/m-n/mariani/2004/mariani040304.htm; terpsboy.com/Articles/RebuttoResume1.doc

TexasToast

Gee Trevor, don’t get mad. I thought I was complimenting Tom, not insulting him, and that I was directly on topic. I thought I was praising Tom for creating “ … a self serving recurring theme” out of a collection of incidents that are separated by years and circumstances. Kerry’s fabulism, as you put it, is, IMHO, a distraction. Moreover, I don’t think the case is a convincing one and I was trying to point that out. Tom is emphasizing these things, again IMHO, because the real substantive issues don’t favor his point of view.

Tom is an entertaining writer – and I have enjoyed reading his stuff for a good while now – even though it appears that he and I have differing views on a whole host of issues. I don’t think my comment that he hasn’t made the case on this issue, that this issue (as well as the AWOL BS and other such “character” attack issues) is non- substantive, and that Tom is avoiding substantive issues because they don’t favor his side is off topic at all.

ParseThis

The more I read on this the weaker it gets because it's all just cover for what you really want to say. So just say it:

Kerry is unpatriotic.

acebb

nice cut & paste from one of your wacko liberal b.s. web sites robert0

"I signed more laws and executive orders amending the Constitution than any other US president in history."

---Could a statement be more factually wrong?
Executive orders "amend" the Constitution?
That would be news to just about anyone.
I won't even go into the laws part, that's even sillier.

"I cut unemployment benefits for more out-of-work Americans than any other president in US history."

--completely false.
Bush Extends Unemployment Benefits For Laid-Off Workers
By Jim Burns
CNSNews.com Senior Staff Writer
December 04, 2001

http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewNation.asp?Page=\Nation\archive\200112\NAT20011204c.html

Bush signs unemployment benefits bill
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush signed a bill Wednesday to extend another 13 weeks of federal unemployment benefits to more than 2 million laid-off workers, including about 800,000 whose benefits ran out after Christmas.

http://www.cnn.com/2003/ALLPOLITICS/01/08/congress.unemployment/

"I am the first president in US history to order a US attack and military occupation of a sovereign nation, and I did so against the will of the United Nations and the vast majority of the international community."

Only according to ignorants such as yourself, was Iraq "sovereign"
That's comical.
You need to lookup and read UN Resolution 1441.
By this standard, the war in Kosovo was the "first ever" too bad you know little history.

"I entered office with the strongest economy in US history and in less than two years turned every single economic category heading straight down. "

--Complete fabrication. The economy was far stronger in March 1998 than it was in March 2000 when the downturn/recession began.


"I am the first president in decades to execute a federal prisoner."

- I take it you are/were against the Tim McVeigh execution then?

Paul Zrimsek

Now all we have to do is figure out why Kerry is avoiding substantive issues. They've got to favor someone's side, haven't they?

Dan

"To insinuate that Abraham Lincoln would recognize the Republican party of Bush and Gingrich would be an insult to the Great Emancipator if it weren't so patently ridiculous".

ab-

So now you're channeling Abe, eh?

By the way, no one said Lincoln was "butch", I used your term, asskicking, to describe that he procescuted the war successfully and with vigor, once he got a handfull of do nothing generals out of the way. Hint: only lefties use "butch" as synonym for manly. When a conservative says Butch, he's talking to his dog.

By the way, try channeling Jefferson, and see how he likes Teddy Kennedy and Robert Byrd. Thanks.

Toby Petzold

Why aren't we hearing more about Lt. Kerry's freelance negotiations with the Communist/VC representatives in Paris during the Peace Talks? That is the real story, as far as I'm concerned.

drive-by

"Kerry is unpatriotic."

That's what you wish we would say, not what we actually think. What we actually think is that Kerry is unhinged.

It is the Democrat party that has demonized patriotism for the last 40 years. Welcome back. Now stop putting words in our mouth. But given the weakness of your case, I can understand the temptation.

drive-by

AB,
I see you don't have a comeback on your slapdown on your deficit claim, nor on the jobless numbers, when the unemployment rate actually dropped, and your opinion on Najaf is only that, your opinion.

Poppy Bush was a pre-9-11 president. His old values are of little use today. I am always fascinated however at your power to see into Bush's soul and make pronouncements on his motives, unless of course you are lying about knowing his every and exact thought process. Perish the thought, a follower of the ADMITTED LIAR Kerry a liar?

Trevor Saccucci

TexasToast:

I thought I was complimenting Tom, not insulting him, and that I was directly on topic.

And Kerry thought - or claims to think - that he was in Cambodia on Christmas Eve of 1968. I can see why you think you were making good points earlier: Reality dosen't seem to have absolute truth to either you or Kerry; it is subordinate to the narrative you wish to construct, which holds a "truth" greater than mere fact.

Kerry’s fabulism, as you put it, is, IMHO, a distraction.

If you think that a Presidential candidate's rank dishonesty or inability to distinguish reality from fantasy are a "distraction" from the issue of whether or not they're qualified to be POTUS, then I'm sure you wouldn't mind being defended in criminal court by a lawyer who fabricated a successful career as criminal defense attorney out of whole cloth? You wouldn't mind getting brain surgery if you needed it from a dermatologist posing as a skilled and successful neurosurgeon, right? Would fact still be subordinate to the greater truth of personal narratives in those cases?

And let me preempt any "on-topic" off-topic points you might try to score on bad intelligence and the Iraq War: Sifting through conflicting intelligence to inform a decision on a course of action, and discovering after the fact that some of that intelligence is wrong is not the same thing as making up adventure stories about super-secret covert missions - or worse yet, actually believing them.

acebb

"Iraq is a mess. Nothing was done right there."

- Nothing?
Nothing?
They don't have a functioning judiciary?
They don't have a provisional government?
They haven't had 2,000+ schools rebuilt?
They haven't held local elections?

George

AB wrote:
>To insinuate that Abraham Lincoln would
>recognize the Republican party of Bush and
>Gingrich..."

Speaking of Lincoln, read this:

"They were suspicious of the shifting justifications for [war]. They weren’t interested in fighting to free anyone. They denounced the president’s restrictions on civil liberties. And they predicted the bloodshed would lead to bigger disasters.

"This wasn’t the Iraq war. It was the Civil War."

Read the whole story here:
http://frankwarner.typepad.com/free_frank_warner/2004/07/the_democrats_d.html

Ken

In Kerry's official biography, noted at kerryhaters.blogspot.com...

Kerry writes in his journal, "I am so conceited that I do not believe the gods would create so potent a being as myself for so prosaic an ending."

http://kerryhaters.blogspot.com/2004_08_08_kerryhaters_archive.html#109237328780008053

Man of the people, man of faith, John Kerry.

Will JK self-destruct, ala Al Gore, upon losing the Presidential election on November 5th?

Ken

TexasToast

Trevor

As I said on another thread at this site

"Seems to me that Kerry's Vietnam experiences were put forward by his campaign to "inoculate" him from attacks that he doesn’t understand what its like to fight in a war. It seems that he does know what its like - even if his boat was on Mars on Christmas day in 1968. "Christmas in Cambodia" is obviously a whopper - but so are most recollections of returning soldiers. Ronald Reagan once "remembered" a conversation in a navy plane over the pacific the end of which was that everybody died. (It was from a movie.) It was actually rather endearing, but Reagan had that way about him that most people would hear the whopper and like him better for it. Kerry is not so blessed, but I hardly think that this story calls his character into question."

The fact that Kerry “sweetened” his trips into Cambodia with a bit of “holiday cheer” is “rank” dishonesty or an “inability to distinguish reality from fantasy?” Are you seriously telling me that you have NEVER made a story a wee bit better? I know I have. I bet most everybody has. You seriously think that is in the same class as putting someone’s life or livelihood in jeopardy by pretending one has a law license or a license to practice medicine? Really? If you do, then it is you that is holding a view of the “truth” of Kerry’s character (or lack thereof) contrary to the demonstrable facts.

Be my guest, Keep making these arguments the facts don’t support. In fact, make them even louder. Blowback is hell.

PS AS to Iraq (since you brought it up), I do not blame the administration for the “bad” intelligence. It does seem however, that they heard what they wanted to hear – and disregarded the rest – sort of like what you are doing now.

AB

Oh, I never attempt to argue economics, especially with Conservatives. It's like when I listen to Conservative pundits wondering why the polls show people so pessimistic about the economy: It's because we're living it,dudes! Everyone I know is doing worse than 4 years ago. Paying more for everything, from gas to milk. Working harder, saving nothing, going deeper into debt despite re-re-refinancing their homes. I don't know much about economics. I just know everyone's looking for a new job and can't find one that pays any better than the jobs that are overworking them now. And benefits, if you call them that, keep getting more expensive, and giving less payout.

Bush's new commercial talks about owning our own social security and health plans. I'd like to know where I'm going to find that money to pay into those plans, since I already can barely meet my bills. And will they be like my 401k plan, which in the past 2 years has earned me exactly $5.45 profit?

Conservatives maybe should listen to those like me who don't know economic speak, but who can speak about the economy we're experiencing. It sucks!

Frank IBC

The Democrats...the party of...

George Wallace. "Segruhgation tuhday, segruhgation tuhmurruh, segruhgation fuhEVuh!"

Orval Faubus.

Robert Byrd, Grand Wizard of the KKK.

Fritz Hollings.

Frank IBC

>> The fact that Kerry “sweetened” his trips into Cambodia with a bit of “holiday cheer” is “rank” dishonesty or an “inability to distinguish reality from fantasy?” Are you seriously telling me that you have NEVER made a story a wee bit better? I know I have.

Yes, but you're not in public office.

And the "holiday cheer" isn't the main issue, the main issue is his fabrication of the mission onto Cambodia in the first place.

And the Kerrybot gets KOed by his own Straw Man...(a case of Friendly Fire? Maybe he can get a Purple Heart, too?)

Frank IBC

>> Conservatives maybe should listen to those like me who don't know economic speak, but who can speak about the economy we're experiencing. It sucks!

Isn't it funny how Liberals always seem to be in worse economic straits than Conservatives?

To me, that says more about Liberals than it does about the overall economy.

AB

Whats your point Frank? That Conservatives have more rights to govern their country than Democrats because they tend to be richer? A lot of them have a lot of unearned wealth. Like Bush for example. In any case, I think this might be another one of those Republican precepts that would have poor old Abe rolling in his grave. (Sorry, I'm not home and can't pull off any quotes, but I don't remember him ever championing the cause of the filthy rich to dominate the struggling common men of our great nation. Being as he was, you know, dirt poor and beloved by the common people. )

Again, doesn't matter. If a Democrat does happen to be wealthy, you mock him for that also. But luckily, we have one vote per person, rich or poor.That's the way it works. Bush may have managed to increase the wealth of the already wealthy, but he didn't manage to increase their numbers. That may not translate into such a smart move come voting time.

Frank IBC

AB -

>> But luckily, we have one vote per person, rich or poor.

Since you're talking about the Democrats, you should have added

"dead or alive."

John Earnest

Oh.My.God. The current holder of the prestigious Iraqi Information Minister Chair of History, the esteemed Mr. Douglas Brinkley, now says, "No, no, NO! It was JANUARY, 1969 (by which time Steve Gardener had left Kerry's boat and wasn't there to, um, like, see anything), when Black Ops Kerry put his barge up into Cambodia. See, it was, um, LUNAR NEW YEAR that the ARVNs and VC and NVA and Khmer Rouge and Amalekites were celebrating by firing off all the tracers, or shooting at Kerry, or whatever. Yeah, THAT'S the ticket. Sheesh. You guys. Nothing to see here. Move along."

Terrible mistake. Kerry (thanks, Brink!) has drawn a hard line at absolutely having dropped operators in Cambodia. Something tells me it doesn't matter what time period his campaign decides to go with, someone who was there will out the truth. It's like watching an increasingly obviously guilty criminal defendant adjust his testimony to take advantage of what he thinks are gaps in the prosecution's case, but he has to guess when he makes it up because he's not sure how much the prosecution knows...and the prosecution knows it all.

If this weren't so much fun, it would almost move me to pity for the sap.

Trevor Saccucci

TexasToast:

The fact that Kerry “sweetened” his trips into Cambodia with a bit of “holiday cheer” is “rank” dishonesty or an “inability to distinguish reality from fantasy?” Are you seriously telling me that you have NEVER made a story a wee bit better? I know I have. I bet most everybody has. You seriously think that is in the same class as putting someone’s life or livelihood in jeopardy by pretending one has a law license or a license to practice medicine? Really? If you do, then it is you that is holding a view of the “truth” of Kerry’s character (or lack thereof) contrary to the demonstrable facts.

Be my guest, Keep making these arguments the facts don’t support. In fact, make them even louder. Blowback is hell.

The POTUS is a someone with the ability to unleash devastating salvos of nuclear weapons which could ravage the Earth, a person who can and does make decisions which send tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of fighting men into combat, a person whose foreign policy decisions could prevent people, perhaps including you, your friends, or your family from getting killed in a terroristic attack on American soil - or not prevent it, as the case may be.

Perhaps you'd care to argue that the facts don't support that assesment?

If you're trying to make the case that having a con artist in the presidency somehow wouldn't pose as great a threat to the public as a shady lawyer or a bogus brain surgeon, who would be by definition con artists, then I'm not the guy who needs to be worried about making ridiculous arguments or suffering from blowback.

It's just common sense not to let someone like that near the reins of power. If Kerry had only stuck to campaigning on his record as a public official, instead of campaigning on a much-fictionalized four-month war record, he wouldn't be in nearly the trouble he's in now. That's the funny thing about telling the truth - you don't have to worry about getting your story straight.

John Kerry's service to his country in Vietnam, real or invented, seems to be and have been first and foremost service to himself. If Kerry puts service to himself over service to his country, or if he can't tell the difference between the two, then he's fundamentally a con artist at best, and he's got no business ascending to the Presidency.

AB

Have you guys noticed yet that nobody cares about this except you?

Even Fox has dropped it.

I know you're all thinking that when the book comes out people will find it fascinating, but do you really think anyone will be reading this book besides those already convinced? And the media has chewed on this bone. They're on to the next big thing, McGreavey, the Olympics, elSadr.

By my accounting, aside from the generals and admirals who today came out publicly denouncing the petty personal attacks of Cheney/Bush, I've noticed the following people reiterate publicly in recent days that Kerry is "absolutely" qualified to be President: John McCain, Rudy Giuliani & Tommy Franks.

You're the ones who look and sound foolish.

Frank IBC

AB -

Can you provide a link to the Giuliani and Franks quotes?

AB

I will try to find them. They were on Yahoo news that I check each day. Both men endorse Bush obviously, but Franks responded "Absolutely!" when asked if Kerry was qualified and Giuliani in the course of an interview said that Kerry's many years in office and his Navy experience more than qualified him. He said that should not be the issue. It's only a matter of policies and principles. I will try to find the links, but they were a few days to a week ago.

As for McCain, most recently the other day, when Don Imus told him he was voting Kerry and asked McCain to convince him to vote Bush, McCain's only reply was "John is a good man. I advise you to vote your conscience."

Please don't ridicule me for not providing links. I'm at work and have to squeeze these posts in rather surrepticiously, not much time to search. But I am telling you what I read, just AP stuff on Yahoo news. And I'll look for the archives when I get time.

Dan

"Have you guys noticed yet that nobody cares about this except you"?

Something we can agree on. Now the question is, why?

A group of otherwise decent, honest men, have made a set of serious charges against a man who seeks to be president. The charges, if true, raise serious doubts about that man's character, honesty and grasp of reality.

These charges may be true of they may be false, but wouldn't you like to know, beyond a reasonable doubt, which it is? Wouldn't you like to see a fairly quick, objective invetsigation into these charges so that come November, when you vote for Kerry you will know he's not what the SwiftVets claim?

So far, the SwiftVets story on Cambodia has checked out and the Kerry folks have been scrambling for an explination that holds water.
This may be the only charge that sticks or may be the first on several.

But, as you say, no one cares.

AB

No, Dan, I'd say most people don't care because it's just not that important. You expect the public to get worked up because a politician stretches the facts or because he's ambitious. If we weeded out the politicians that didn't do that, we'd have none left. you want people to see this as evidence the man is crazy or unfit for office, but the connection just isn't there. At the same time you DONT want people to make any connections about Bush's past or about his behavior wasting 27 minutes after learning the country was under attack. You can't have it both ways. You also can't blame people for just not sharing your double standards.

TexasToast

"The POTUS is a someone with the ability to unleash devastating salvos of nuclear weapons which could ravage the Earth, a person who can and does make decisions which send tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of fighting men into combat, a person whose foreign policy decisions could prevent people, perhaps including you, your friends, or your family from getting killed in a terroristic attack on American soil - or not prevent it, as the case may be.

Perhaps you'd care to argue that the facts don't support that assessment? "

Why would I want to argue with that? I 'll also agree that the POTUS makes decisions that affect our economy, our civil liberties, environmental policy, energy policy, missions to Mars (whatever happened to that?), judicial appointments, regulatory policy in a variety of areas - in addition to having his finger on the BIG RED BUTTON, so to speak. Yep, lots of important stuff is decided by the POTUS.

“If you're trying to make the case that having a con artist in the presidency somehow wouldn't pose as great a threat to the public as a shady lawyer or a bogus brain surgeon, who would be by definition con artists, then I'm not the guy who needs to be worried about making ridiculous arguments or suffering from blowback”

I’ll agree that a “con artist” as president would be a bad thing. Where we part company is that these “facts” don’t come anywhere close to “proving” that Senator Kerry is a “con artist”. Did he “con” all those officers who had to put in for, consider and approve all those medals? Or are you suggesting the he forged all their signatures – or that the military handed out medals in Vietnam like candy at Halloween?


Look, its true that John Kerry strongly opposed the war in Vietnam, that he cam home and loudly voiced that opposition, and he symbolically showed that opposition in a way that deeply offended some people in this country – including many if not most of the Swift Boat vets. The truth and the fact remains however – he went, he served, and he served honorably. No one else running for president or vice president in 2004 can say the same.

Dan

No AB, every aspect of Bush's performance is scrutinized from every angle, for weeks or months. Those of us who support Bush, know what we are getting, warts and all.

Kerry supporters don't seem to want to know if their guy has serious flaws until after November. So the string of prevarications continue to mount. Each one is viewed independently and declared unimportant. None are run to ground. You can say Cambodia is unimportant and I agree. I don't agree that the way Kerry handled the revelation is unimportant. Its part of a pattern of facing adversity with dishonesty.

And the question still is there. What if all or most of the charges made by O'Neill et al are true? Do you want to know now or do want to find out next January?

By the way, what was it you expected Bush to do in those 7 (or 27?) minutes? We know Kerry sat there "unable to think". Maybe Kerry would have reacted differently if he had been president, I don't know. And I don't know that it would have made a difference anyway. This is the kind of thing that I don't think is important becuse it is just optics - some think the president looked more in charge by remaining unruffled, some disagree. Who cares? Now if Bush reacted to this critisism by insisting he was in constant communication with Norad via a tiny transceiver implanted in his lapel pin, I would start having my doubts about him.

Greg F

AB wrote:
"You expect the public to get worked up because a politician stretches the facts or because he's ambitious. If we weeded out the politicians that didn't do that, we'd have none left."

Sounds like a plan to me!

GT

Dan,

I think O'Neill's accusations have shown to be, to be charitable, utterly unproven and unprovable.

The only thing he has left is this Cambodia thing which no one cares about.

Cecil Turner

"I think O'Neill's accusations have shown to be, to be charitable, utterly unproven and unprovable."

Except, of course, that the most charitable interpretation of his Silver Star award and at least one Purple Heart indicate the circumstances surrounding them were dubious at best.

"The only thing he has left is this Cambodia thing which no one cares about."

Except that it demonstrates a capacity for bald-faced lying that, combined with his other questionable statements about the period (e.g., Winter Soldier), undermine his credibility. Which tends to make the rest of the SBVT assertions more believable.

Dan

GT

When did that happen? And as I said, I care about how Kerry handled the "Cambodia thing".

So, ok, John Kerry was a heroic and honorable man 35 years ago. In the last 12 months or so he has had a number of opportunities to demonstrate that he is still courageous and honorable.

He could have said, "yes I was at the meeting when the assassination of US senators was discussed. I didn't think they were serious, but I argued against it anyway. Afterwards I resigned". This would have been smart and true. It would have been courageous because he still would have faced criticism for not reporting it, but he chose instead to say he wasn't there.

He could have said, "yes, I participated in the anti-war movement, including my trip to North Viet Nam, while I was still in the Navy. I believed what I did was right and I was prepared to suffer the legal consequences had there been any". This would have been a heroic statement, but instead he fudged his service dates - he lied.

He could have said, "no, I wasn't in Cambodia on Christmas Eve 1968, but others were and I felt I was speaking for them. But you know what, I was wrong to do so". Again an opportunity to show courage and again Kerry chose to lie.

Kerry may well win the election, but do you really think his behavior is honerable? Do you really think he is mentally tough enough and adroit enough for the job. Do you really think he'll stop lying just because he is president?

GT

Not at all.

Not a single one of the reasons in the official citation for the SS has been even disputed.

Shot in the back? Number of VCs? None of that wasmentioned in the citation.

All we have is Elliot claiming, without any supporting evidence of any kind, that he recommended the SS for reasons that somehow were never put into the SS citation. Funny, huh?

And the PH is even worse. A doctor shows up saying he treated the wound but there is no evidence of that. And his description of the wound fits perfectly with what the regulations say is needed to get a PH.

And still no one cares about Cambodia.

GT

Dan,

I don't expect Kerry will stop lying because all politicians do. I expect his lies will be less damaging than Bush's though.

Dan

GT -

If no one cares about Cambodia, why do you keep bringing it up?

I was reading on a thread the other day that Kerry trolls usually post under 2 letter initials, usually lower case. They must have realized they've outed and gone to upper case. Clever, very clever.

GT

When I say no one I mean politically. I am a news and politics junkie which is why I post in these forums. So I care to debate but I realize that the public doen's give a damn.

As for trolling I've been posting using my initials for years.

Cecil Turner

"Shot in the back? Number of VCs? None of that was mentioned in the citation."

Bzzzt. "The extraordinary daring and personal courage of Lieutenant (junior grade) KERRY in attacking a numerically superior force in the face of intense fire were responsible for the highly successful mission." (Emphasis added--note that "numerically superior" means outnumbering the attackers--and that requires at least a couple.) And in any event, does chasing down a single, wounded VC rate a Silver Star? Umm, no.

And the PH is even worse. A doctor shows up saying he treated the wound but there is no evidence of that.

Except for his unchallenged word that he was the only medical officer on the base in question. BTW, eyewitness testimony is "evidence" by anybody's standard. (Many consider it the best kind.)

GT

Sorry Cecil, you seem to have forgotten that the SS citation is for two different events and that there were multiple enemies in the first event. The description of the second event talks neither of killings or the number of enemies.

The sentence you quote comes at the end if the citation so it is not clear if it refers to the second event or if it is, as I read it, a summary of both events.

You ask if chasing down a single, wounded VC rate a Silver Star? Well, even if the second event had been just that (and it wasn't, according to those that, unlike you me or O'Neill were actually there) you forget the citation was about two different events.

Finally on the doctor even if he treated the wound he has failed to tell us why he shouldn't have gotten the PH.

Monique

One commentator mentioned, about the doctor, how did he remember this incredibly slight wound all those years later, after treating so many thousands of injuries. He remembered that Kerry's wound was so slight? It simply doesn't ring true. It just sounds ridiculous and I'm not sure why they think an unbiased person would ever believe it. It's only his word. His name appears on no paperwork. And his word is that he remembers a tiny little splinter kind of wound in the middle of the Vietnam bloodbath. They must really think we are dumb.

Cecil Turner

"You ask if chasing down a single, wounded VC rate a Silver Star? Well, even if the second event had been just that (and it wasn't, according to those that, unlike you me or O'Neill were actually there)"

According to John Kerry, it was pretty close to just that: "He was hurt, other guys were shooting from back, side, back. There is no, there is not a scintilla of question in any person's mind who was there [that] this guy was dangerous, he was a combatant, he had an armed weapon."

I'd say it's fairly obvious he's not talking about a group, and that the guy was wounded.

"you forget the citation was about two different events.

You apparently believe the second wasn't the basis for the award, but it seems to figure prominently in most accounts (including Kerry's). There's little other personal valor mentioned in the citation.

Finally on the doctor even if he treated the wound he has failed to tell us why he shouldn't have gotten the PH.

Yes, he did: "Some of his crew confided that they did not receive any fire from shore, but that Kerry had fired a mortar round at close range to some rocks on shore. The crewman thought that the injury was caused by a fragment ricocheting from that mortar round when it struck the rocks." (He makes an obvious error calling a grenade a mortar, but that's not uncommon among docs.)

GT

Cecil,


Let's go over this again,

Both events are the basis of the citation. Both.

The citation does not talk of any killings so that's irrelevant.

Even if Kerry's grenade attack did hurt him, something the doctor doesn't know since he wasn't there, you still get a PH for that.

You keep trying but there's nothing there. The whole story has collapsed.

Cecil Turner

GT,

If both events are the basis of the citation, but one of them is a fabrication (or not medalworthy), then only one event is the basis of the citation. And if that event doesn't rate a Silver Star, then the medal is "dubious." Charitably.

Even if Kerry's grenade attack did hurt him, something the doctor doesn't know since he wasn't there, you still get a PH for that.

Um, no. You get a PH for receiving enemy fire (or, in some very limited situations, for receiving friendly fire directed at the enemy in the heat of battle)--self-inflicted wounds do not qualify.

Larry

We can speculate about PH's and SS's all we want, but the sworn statements and detail in the charges can only be settled by examining Kerry's service records. Kerry won't authorize their release and the press won't hound him, as they did Bush. That leaves the military as the only non-political authority that can investigate whether the decorations were awarded properly. Why don't we all ask them to do it?

ed

Hmmm.

"You keep trying but there's nothing there. The whole story has collapsed."

And you've shown repeatedly that you have no idea of what you're writing about and that you have no ability to learn from what people have posted on this blog. Frankly I'm amazed at the patience that has been shown to you by so many people as they explain how things are done in the military.

That you are so patently unwilling to learn the absolute minimum necessary to maintain a reasonable debate shows how valueless your arguements are.

ed

Hmmm.

"One commentator mentioned, about the doctor, how did he remember this incredibly slight wound all those years later, after treating so many thousands of injuries."

Because the American military has a thing about the cult of the physical. We've all grown up with John Wayne movies and war stories told by relatives, and their widows.

So yes it is rather different that an officer would spend hours travelling back to base with a insignificant splinter in his arm rather than simply pulling it out and, maybe, slapping a band-aid on it. I know for a fact that I have never known any solder, sailor or flyboy who wouldn't have simply pulled the silly thing out. I've known a few who've suffered worse than a mere scratch.

I'm certain also that Kerry's bid for a Purple Heart for that "wound" would also be very common knowledge on that base. Something like that could easily be remembered by anyone.

Greg F

Monique wrote:
“One commentator mentioned, about the doctor, how did he remember this incredibly slight wound all those years later, after treating so many thousands of injuries. He remembered that Kerry's wound was so slight?”

Guess your not very old. I remember a lot of things, that would appear relatively insignificant to you, from 30 or 40 years ago. Memory is a funny like that.

“I'm not sure why they think an unbiased person would ever believe it.”

There is no such thing as an “unbiased person”. Your bias is the belief that nobody remembers minor events from years past, this is simply not true. This bias then leads you down a logical path to conclusions based on a false premise.

“It's only his word. His name appears on no paperwork.”

This is actually quite typical in medicine. My daughter was treated for a fairly serious condition a few years ago. Her doctor, according to the paperwork, was not the doctor who treated her. Her doctor on the paperwork was a subordinate of the doctor that actually treated her.

Monique

So what you're saying is, it means nothing that his name isn't on the paperwork because that's common. And it means nothing that he remembered an insiginificant wound in the midst of a sea of desperate combat injuries, because that happens. And it means nothing that he came forth only 30 some years later because he's just a great guy like that. And he remembered Kerry's purple heart because it was common knowledge, which means I guess you're saying this doctor and Kerry were well known to each other on this base, where Kerry spent so little time and where this doctor apparently had so little else to think about that he took note of him.

This is hearsay and conjecture and rumor and innuendo. I can see how if you want to believe it, you would, but there is simply no factual basis for it besides the doctor's word 30 years later. That would not fly in a court of law. That is not something anyone can defend themself against. It is also something no one should deign to defend themself agains, on such flimsy and meaningless "evidence".

Yet this man went on a tv commercial and stated it like a point of fact, and is asking (with the group) for an investigation into something that can never be proved. He made an allegation against another man's character, burden of proof on the accuser, that he can not ever prove. In a paid political advertisement. And it's Kerry's character we're questioning?

I think you can see why this story has no legs with the public. We're all used to an innocent until proven guilty ethic. This kind of thing is very unacceptable in our culture, on just every level. Thankfully, or unprincipled people would be baselessly destroying other peoples characters for personal, political or financial profit at every oppportunity.

Monique

So what you're saying is, it means nothing that his name isn't on the paperwork because that's common. And it means nothing that he remembered an insiginificant wound in the midst of a sea of desperate combat injuries, because that happens. And it means nothing that he came forth only 30 some years later because he's just a great guy like that. And he remembered Kerry's purple heart because it was common knowledge, which means I guess you're saying this doctor and Kerry were well known to each other on this base, where Kerry spent so little time and where this doctor apparently had so little else to think about that he took note of him.

This is hearsay and conjecture and rumor and innuendo. I can see how if you want to believe it, you would, but there is simply no factual basis for it besides the doctor's word 30 years later. That would not fly in a court of law. That is not something anyone can defend themself against. It is also something no one should deign to defend themself agains, on such flimsy and meaningless "evidence".

Yet this man went on a tv commercial and stated it like a point of fact, and is asking (with the group) for an investigation into something that can never be proved. He made an allegation against another man's character, burden of proof on the accuser, that he can not ever prove. In a paid political advertisement. And it's Kerry's character we're questioning?

I think you can see why this story has no legs with the public. We're all used to an innocent until proven guilty ethic. This kind of thing is very unacceptable in our culture, on just every level. Thankfully, or unprincipled people would be baselessly destroying other peoples characters for personal, political or financial profit at every oppportunity.

Cecil Turner

"So what you're saying is, it means nothing that his name isn't on the paperwork because that's common."

That's correct. The Navy has hospitalmen (designated HM) who do various duties including office work and administration. It's not at all odd to see them sign off the paperwork, especially if the doctor is busy.

"And it means nothing that he remembered an insiginificant wound in the midst of a sea of desperate combat injuries, because that happens."

The part you don't seem to get is that it was memorable because it was insignificant (and the patient was obviously bucking for a PH). Remember the MASH episode where Frank gets a PH for falling on an egg in the mess tent? (Paraphrased: "I had to have a shell fragment removed from my eye." "It was an egg shell fragment, Frank." "That's not what it says on the citation.")

And apparently his commander at the time remembered it:

"He had a little scratch on his forearm, and he was holding a piece of shrapnel," recalled Kerry's commanding officer, Lieutenant Commander Grant Hibbard. "People in the office were saying, `I don't think we got any fire,' and there is a guy holding a little piece of shrapnel in his palm."
"This is hearsay and conjecture and rumor and innuendo. . ." "That would not fly in a court of law. "

On the contrary--this is over a hundred eyewitnesses--many claiming direct knowledge and directly challenging Kerry's version of events. It would be perfectly admissible in any court in the nation--and the jury would then have to sift through the competing versions and determine which they found more credible. That's why Kerry's forced retreat on his Cambodian sugarplum fantasy is so damaging. You can dismiss it out of hand if you like, but the Swiftees have been proven right on one point, and their version of the others looks to me to be more credible than Kerry's, not less.

TM

Sorry, I'm sort of off-topic. The Chinese New Year looks like it was Feb 16, 1969, based on moon phases and this paper.

The Chinese New Year is a major holiday in Vietnam, celebrated over three days. I assume that was true prior to the N Vietnamese takeover.

Amd I see from the Command History that boat 94 was operating in the Bay Hap river on Feb 18/19, getting shot at by VC and with "troops embarked to sweep ambush sites along the banks". Obviously, these could be SEALs, CIA, US Army, South Vietnamese army - who knows?

Ahh - at his website summary, they are South Vietnamese - probably from the after-action report. Maybe we don't fully believe that part of the report, since the covert stuff was covert...

And is this a glitch in the reporting - the Command History shows nothing for Feb 14; the website summary shows two (unidentified) PCFs dropped off a SEAL team. [Hmm, maybe the Feb 14 ran off the bottom of the page]. Again, the after-action reports might have an answer.

Now, I may be stone wrong about the date for the New Year, and I don't know whether the Bay Hap leads near Cambodia. But a Kerry spin-meister might want to reflect on this.

Monique

Cecil, are you saying there are a hundred eyewitnesses to the first Purple Heart wound? That IS astonishing.

Can you please put the Hibbard "memory" into context as to time? Was this a contemporaneous memory he wrote to or discussed with some other witness? Or did it also resurface in his mind during the course of a political campaign?

Luckily for all of us, we cannot be convicted of a crime on the word of a man who claims, with absolutely no documentation, to remember an event 30 years after the fact. Even if his very politically motivated allies come forth with similarly tardy memories.

And please do not try to peddle the myth that there is no political motivation here, that these are just a bunch of random Joes who suddenly had pangs of civil conscience. The writers of this book, one of them a vicious bigot and both funded by a wealthy Republican activist, sought out veterans for this book. They were asked to remember specific events, tailored to fit a predetermined, politically motivated conclusion. Those who complied were put into the book, those who did not comply were not and their non participation was not documented as to number or motivation. This kind of evidence indeed is not permissible in a court of law. For obvious reasons. And again, luckily for all of us.

Paul Zrimsek
They were asked to remember specific events, tailored to fit a predetermined, politically motivated conclusion.

Evidently some of us are not quite as "used to an innocent until proven guilty ethic" as others.

TM

OK, John Kerry's website has a nice summary of his Silver Star incident, which I will excerpt. Then perhaps GT can tells us just when Kerry confronted the "numerically superior" force mentioned in the Silver Star citation:

8 FEB 1969 Bay Hap River

Three PCFs were traveling up the Bay Hap River with 70 South Vietnamese Militia investigating an area where the boats were ambushed the previous night. During the patrol, the boats came under heavy fore [sic] from the shore. Kerry, serving as the Officer in Tactical Command of the mission, ordered the units to turn toward the fire and beach. As the boats approached shore, more than 20 Viet Cong troops stood up and ran. They were quickly overrun when the Marines troops reached the shore. While the Militia searched the area, PCFs 23 and 94 left to investigate another site where an Army advisor reported gunshots. Returning from the site, a B-40 rocket exploded close to PCF94, blowing out one of the windows. Kerry again ordered the units to turn into the fire and charge the ambush site. PCF 94 landed in the center of ambush and a man jumped up holding a B-40 rocket launcher and started to run. The forward M-60 gunner on PCF94 wounded him in the leg as Kerry jumped off the boat and chased him inland behind a hooch and shot him. Marines swept the area, and received fire from snipers and small arms that was suppressed with the assistance of mortars and gunfire from the swiftboats.

OK, heavy "fore" from the shore? You may think it is a typo, but I think they were sailing by a VC driving range. KIDDING!

As to the argument thatKerry cannot be convicted of a crimed based on thirty year old memories - ahh,is this a criminal proceeding? This is the court of public opinion.

John Edwards did say, ask the guys who served with Kerry. These are his COs and fellow officers responding to Edward's call.

And we will now drift off-topic, and risk an avalanche of irrelevancies - aren't people screaming that someone ought to remember sitting around an office in Alabama some weekend over thirty years ago with George Bush?

I actually have an easy time believing that the doctor who treated Kerry's first wound remembered it - if I were treating serious wounds all day, and a guy came in with a scratch and a silly story, the officer might easily stick in my mind - and not for his courage.

Cecil Turner

Cecil, are you saying there are a hundred eyewitnesses to the first Purple Heart wound? That IS astonishing.

Umm, no. I'm saying there are more than a hundred eyewitnesses to contradict some of the various BS Kerry has spouted over the years about Vietnam. (And apparently the "Swiftvets" have collected some 250+ of them.) Considering the sheer bulk and scope of dubious Kerry claims (from Genghis Khan to Christmas in Cambodia), it's hardly remarkable.

Or did it also resurface in his mind during the course of a political campaign?

Puh-leeze. The contention that this is all new, and that Kerry's war stories haven't been debated for decades is ludicrous. O'Neill has been calling John Kerry a liar since at least 1971 (on the Dick Cavett show he did so repeatedly, starting with the opening statement and continuing through the show).

"And please do not try to peddle the myth that there is no political motivation here . . ."

If you'll refrain from pretending there's no political motivation from the other side, I suppose that's fair.

TM

Thanks for the Dick Cavett transcript - Cavett's cutaways to commercials are classic.

Anyway, here is Kerry on Cavett, explaining how he left Vietnam after four month:

The fact of the matter remains that after I received my third wound, I was told that I could return to the United States. I deliberated for about two weeks because there was a very difficult decision in whether or not you leave your friends because you have an opportunity to go, but I finally made the decision to go back and did leave of my own volition because I felt that I could do more against he war back here.

And from the Boston Globe:

But Kerry thought he had seen and done enough. The rules, he said, allowed a thrice-wounded soldier to return to the United States immediately. So Kerry went to talk to Commodore Charles F. Horne, an administrative official and commander of the coastal squadron in which Kerry served. Horne filled out a document on March 17, 1969, that said Kerry "has been thrice wounded in action while on duty incountry Vietnam. Reassignment is requested ... as a personal aide in Boston, New York, or Wash., D.C. area."

The document notes that Kerry was "presently on full-duty status and available for reassignment."

Horne, in a telephone interview, said the transfer request was allowed under then-existing naval instructions and was "above board and proper." Transfer was not automatic and was subject to approval by the Bureau of Naval Personnel, he said.

"I never once in any way thought my decision was wrong," Horne said. "To get three Purple Hearts and not be killed is awesome."

Kerry, asked whether he is certain a rule enabled him to leave Vietnam after three Purple Hearts, responded: "Yep. Three and you're out."

For the past several weeks, Kerry's staff said it has been unable to come up with a Navy document to explain that assertion. On Friday, however, the National Archives provided the Globe with a Navy "instruction" document that formed the basis for Kerry's request. The instruction, titled 1300.39, says that a Naval officer who requires hospitalization on two separate occasions, or who receives three wounds "regardless of the nature of the wounds," can ask a superior officer to request a reassignment. The instruction makes clear the reassignment is not automatic. It says that the reassignment "will be determined after consideration of his physical classification for duty and on an individual basis." Because Kerry's wounds were not considered serious, his reassignment appears to have been made on an individual basis.

Moreover, the instruction makes clear that Kerry could have asked that any reassignment be waived.

The bottom line is that Kerry could have remained but he chose to seek an early transfer. He met with Horne, who agreed to forward the request, which Horne said probably ensured final approval. The Navy could not say how many other officers or sailors got a similar early release from combat, but it was unusual for anyone to have three Purple Hearts.

How might we characterize his own description on the Cavett show?

GT

Cecil,

Let's start with the easiest first. The first PH. There are two issues, one is how he got the wound and the other is how severe it was.

Contrary to what you said you don't get a PH only for enemy fire. In fact, you can get it for friendly fire as well. Our own host wrote about that only a few days ago.

As Tom wrote, quoting the PH regulations:

Individuals wounded or killed as a result of "friendly fire" in the "heat of battle" will be awarded the Purple Heart as long as the "friendly" projectile or agent was released with the full intent of inflicting damage or destroying enemy troops or equipment.

Kerry's then CO, Grant Hibbard, claims, with nothing to back it up, that Kerry did not face enemy fire that day. But the people who were actually in the boat disagree.


Grant Hibbard, a commander when Kerry reported his first injury in Vietnam said the wound was most likely self-inflicted and the report at the time indicated there was no enemy fire.

Veterans who were on the boat with Kerry give a different version. Pat Runyon said the crew was patrolling north of Cam Ranh Bay the night of Dec. 2, 1968, when Kerry and fellow crewman Bill Zaledonis spotted Viet Cong guerrillas massed on a beach and began firing.

http://www.montereyherald.com/mld/mcherald/2004/07/13/news/nation/9142574.htm

Once again we have anti-Kerry people who were not present saying one thing. and those that were there contradicting them.

On the severity it is also irrelevant. The PH regulations do not say anything other than that it has to be treated medically. Which it was.

GT

The next one is the Bronze Star. YOu may have noticed it has not been mentioned as much.

The reason is simple. For the SBFT to be correct it means that not only Kerry but also his crew and Rassman, all lied. Once again we have one version from those that were present and another from anti-Kerry people who were not.

Another dead issue.

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