Sunday, June 20, 2004does it again - I actually found myself laughing out loud:
Kerry is a rich man who promotes the Democratic ideal that government should do more to help the poor. He moves between both worlds, spending the past week traveling to downtrodden places like South-side Columbus, Ohio, and the affluent island playground of Nantucket.
Not since President Kennedy have Democrats been prepared to nominate a man of such riches.
Like Kerry, President Bush is a Yale graduate who has benefited from his wealth and family connections. But Bush spends his down time as more of an everyman, preferring to spend vacations at his Texas ranch clearing brush.
"Most Americans don't sit in Martha's Vineyard, swilling white wine," he said at the ranch two years ago.
I'm in awe of this woman's Hackdom. I could fisk this, but what's the point, really? The AP should be outraged.
Thursday, June 10, 2004
President Bush's campaign staffers believe that pushing their own guy isn't a particularly good political strategy and that bashing Kerry or grasping on to Reagan nostalgia is far preferable?
Now to a related point. I've got a number of notes from people (few of them Bush supporters in the first case, of course) who are outraged by the Bush campaign's unabashed exploitation of Reagan's passing as part of their reelection campaign effort --- the morphing of the Bush website into the Reagan tribute website being a key example.
Yes, it's crass and cynical. But it's also a tad desperate.
Josh Marshall's analysis here is quite cogent - Bush's problem is that he is a weak leader. There's simply nothing that his supporters can point to to make a case to the undecided moderate - it's a purely base-driven campaign, to whom adoring photos of Bush with halos around his head and Reagan-worship are simply red meat.
Case in point - allowing his foreign policy to be dictated by the very group of advisors who Reagan was wise enough to ignore. The neo-conservatives are now licking the wounds, having had their agenda nearly completely discredited:
Fourteen months ago, Kenneth Adelman was one of the prominent neoconservatives who took part in a now-storied victory celebration at the home of Vice President Dick Cheney that was described in Bob Woodward's book "Plan of Attack."
Since then, Adelman acknowledged, the group's influence has declined, because "Iraq didn't turn out to be as promising as it was billed."
Adelman, a former Reagan administration official, said that although he supported the rationale for the war, he was torn about what had happened since. "I still have to sort it all out. I'm just not settled yet," he said.
...."Bush could end up looking like the worst president since Jimmy Carter because of Iraq, and people are going to say, 'You got us into this mess,' " said one Washington source who considered himself a neoconservative and spoke on the condition of anonymity. "It's going to be nasty and bitter and brutal."
You almost have to feel sorry for Bush - a weak leader who bought into the plans and promises of these zealots - and when it all fell apart, is blamed by them for the failure of those policies. Well, Bush deserves blame, because the buck stops there (and Reagan was wise enough to steer clear - a fact to his immense credit that isn't mentioned on the Bush campaign website-shrine-diversion).
Bush is bleeding away any moderate support, leaving him only with his base. They alone cannot win him re-election.
Saturday, June 05, 2004
"Ronald Reagan's love of country was infectious. Even when he was breaking Democrats' hearts, he did so with a smile and in the spirit of honest and open debate. Despite the disagreements, he lived by that noble ideal that at 5pm we weren't Democrats or Republicans, we were Americans and friends. President Reagan and Tip O'Neill fought hard and honorably on many issues, and sat down together to happily swap jokes and the stories of their lives. The differences were real, but because of the way President Reagan led, he taught us that there is a big difference between strong beliefs and bitter partisanship.
"He was the voice of America in good times and in grief. When we lost the brave astronauts in the Challenger tragedy, he reminded us that, `Nothing ends here; our hopes and our journeys continue.'
"Now, his own journey has ended-a long and storied trip that spanned most of the American century-and shaped one of the greatest victories of freedom. Today in the face of new challenges, his example reminds us that we must move forward with optimism and resolve. He was our oldest president, but he made America young again.
"Our prayers are with his family, and the wife he loved in a way all the world could see. And to the end, she loved him with courage and complete devotion. She helped all of us better understand the cruel disease that took him away before it took his life, and what we must do to prevent and cure it.
"Teresa and I and our family extend our deepest sympathies to Nancy Reagan and the Reagan family. Today, from California to Maine - `from sea to shining sea' - Americans will bow their heads in prayer and gratitude that President Reagan left such an indelible stamp on the nation he loved."