The Right Coast
June 20, 2004
More on Iraq- al Qaeda connection
By Tom Smith
This via realclearpolitics (which should be a daily stop for you).
I really question the wisdom of Kerry making such a big deal out of the "no connection" line. His big problem with swing voters is, I think, not seeming trustworthy on national security. If his big principle is, we have to give people who truck with terrorists the benefit of the doubt, how does that help him? It's late to be playing to his base, which is what this seems like. Along the lines of the old Kennedy saw that he found campaigning less stressful than Nixon, because he could just be himself and Nixon could not, this suggests to me Kerry has a hard time not being the left wing critic of US foreign policy. This may endear him to the New York Times, but I doubt it's smart in Florida or Ohio.
You never know where debates will end up, but this one looks like it's heading towards Kerry saying the evidence was not strong enough to justify war, and Bush saying in a war against terrorism, you can't wait until you are sure beyond a reasonable doubt that somebody is planning to attack you or helping those who are.
AND there's this Jack Kelly column which does a good job hitting the high points of how the media is getting the 9/11 commission report wrong.
Not to insult our friends on the left unduly, but I am puzzled at what they are thinking here. Are they thinking they can get away with such distortions? In politics, everybody spins. To me, though, it seems the left is quite a bit cruder about it. Is this a holdover from the old Stalinist Orwellian business of just brazening things out? "We have always been at war with Oceana"? Is this because the left is pitching to the poor masses, who don't read UN and 9/11 commission reports on the web? Or is it more a Clintonian thing? He certainly was a poster boy for the idea that liars can prosper. I like to think, though this may be way too optimistic, that with the internet, blogs, etc. etc., we are coming out of a period in which "the masses" can be so easily manipulated by big media, when William Randolph Hearst could start a war (though of course that war was just so we could get naval bases, etc. etc.). Maybe this means the media will have to stop treating us so much like idiot children.