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November 14, 2004

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Thomas J. Jackson

Kerry lost because the debates highlighted a simple truth. People prefer tongue tied individuals who have clear positions who can be relied on to do what they say as opposed to fast talking snake oil salesmen who have special plans developed by Wiley Coyote.

Kerry just registered a No Sale with the American people. But the bigger news was the Democratic Party was rebuffed in a fashion that demonstrates clearly that people have no faith in their nostrums of tax it, make the government bigger, and the celebration of abnormal lifestyles.

Les Nessman

"..almost all the prewar arguments for invading Iraq were wrong -- the existence of weapons of mass destruction, close links to Al Qaeda.." Whoops, Boston Globe! Your bias is showing. We didn't find STOCKPILES of wmd, but we DID find wmd. And evidence that other wmd's may have been smuggled out prior to invasion.
We didn't *prove* CLOSE links to Al Q., but there were links to Al Q and terrorism in general. And 'close links to Al Qaeda' was never given as a reason to go to war.

The dinosaur media keeps fighting the old war, while the Web keeps growing....

ed

Hmmm.

Supposedly Kerry's primary problem was that he relied on the advice of others.

Leaders who don't make their own decisions aren't leaders, they're followers.

That was Kerry's primary problem. He didn't lead, he was lead. And nobody likes that in a President.

Lurking Observer

Althouse's comment reminds me of one of the Kerry-Edwards' gaffes.

Right after the GOP convention, the Dem web-site put up a list of "Lies from the GOP Convention."

The problem was that all they did was list GOP quotes. No rebuttal. No response. Just a list of quotes.

As though the mere listing of said quotes proved that they were lies. Or something.

Althouse's comments about Kerry (and Begala's fretting) smacked of the same problem: Kerry simply listed areas, and assumed that the listener would agree:

1. These are problems.
2. Kerry/Edwards had a solution to them.

So, in addition to not being a leader and not having "a narrative," the Kerry campaign didn't even have a rebuttal to the GOP.

Jim Rockford

Kerry made a lot of tactical errors, but he made one HUGE strategic error in misreading the American people.

He felt that people were fundamentally unaffected by 9/11 on National Security; and that Iraq was like Vietnam, a war to be avoided or pulled out from at the earliest opportunity. He constantly displayed the effect of the Media Cocoon in that he felt that most folks wanted to pretend 9/11 never happened and return to Clinton-esque avoidance of overseas risk. His insistence on the UN, Allies, the French etc was a result of this miscalculation on the public's mood.

After 9/11 the US public for the most part rejected the Powell Doctrine on the use of military force; and wanted the US to go kick ass definitively in the Middle East. They pretty much didn't care where, so long as ass was kicked, and kicked "big time" as Cheney would say.

Kerry could have made the case that Bush left Iranian ass unkicked, and it was time to remove the Mullahs; that his policy would be even MORE aggressive towards threats. Have a partitioning of Iraq (Kurds take the North, Sunnis the South; screw the Baathists/Sunnis) and withdraw in prep for an Iranian invasion. THAT would have been like JFK running on the Missile Gap, and would have probably won.

Unfortunately Kerry is a prisoner of his time; stuck in the Sixties to Eighties where the best course was AVOIDING military action in context of the Cold War (a good case can be made that this was what the doctor ordered back then). To quote Emilio Estevez, however, "That Was Then, This is Now," and after 9/11 the mood of the American Public was Toby Keith, not Dixie Chicks.

[For the un-initiated, the Dixie Chicks started feuding with Keith when he made the song/video after 9/11 promising to "put a boot up your ass, it's the American Way" to Osama, filled with images of helicopters, flags, and Keith in camo with troops. It only got worse when Maines apologized for being from Texas in front of a London crowd. Result? Keith is a Country Mainstay, the Chicks have essentially disappeared from Country radio and events like the CMA where they used to be popular though they are still popular in "Adult Contemporary" in urban areas and do OK in tours in big cities. Go figure.]

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