Wednesday, November 01, 2006

John Kerry Should Be Thanked For His Honesty

I was so happy to see John Kerry's remarks yesterday about how if you're stupid, you get "stuck in Iraq."

Not that I wasn't massively offended. Here, I play both my veteran card and my from-the-South-Dakota-trailer-park card. The Navy was a great opportunity for me, but it certainly wasn't my only one. And ultimately, I chose to serve even after a really negative ROTC experience because I decided I owed my country my service. And so my very first reaction to John Kerry's latest bits of wisdom includes words and phrases better suited to the ship than to public writings. He is truly beneath contempt.

But then I realized that this was preferable to the pander about how everyone "supports the troops" (a phrase almost without meaning). Because the bottom line is that Kerry doesn't, and neither do the liberals he was appealing to at the California rally or at his hole-digging press conference here in Seattle the next day. The far left Phil Angeledes supporters and Kerry himself hold military people in deep, deep contempt. It's not universal from liberals, but it's pretty darn close. I saw it all the time from people in college, and even back home - "Why would you join the military? You can do other things!"

This morning I was flipping around the radio on my way to school, and turned to Hippy Radio to see what they had to say about it. Predictably, Stephanie Miller said Bush was the one who should apologize to the troops. Yawn. But then she took a call from a listener that insisted Kerry was right, and that if they'd just poll the troops they'd see that they all were forced to join the military because they didn't have any other options. The host agreed, but then quickly pointed out that wasn't what Kerry REALLY meant. Right.

Even worse, the military are actually much better educated than their civilian peers. Not only was he a jerk, he's just factually wrong.

Last night on Hannity and Colmes, John McCain was visibly angry in denouncing Kerry's comments. And remember, this is from the guy who was mad about the Swift Boat Vets.

The bottom line is that they believe that the military is the last refuge for the dumb who couldn't get into Community College, because the vast majority of liberals wouldn't even think about joining the military. I believe they're sincere when they say they "support the troops," but they say that like they say they support infants. There's no respect there, and there's an insulting ignorance about the men and women currently serving, why they're serving, and their education levels. And worse, they think "supporting the troops" means to keep them home at all costs. You can't tell me Eisenhower didn't support the troops, but they were less well equipped, trained, treated, educated, and led than our soldiers are now.

Kerry claims he meant to insult the President, not the soldiers. I believe that, too. But the Vietnam "Baby killer!" shouting anti-war protester he came of age as reflexively came out instead. It's hard to contain your true beliefs constantly. This was the ultimate Freudian slip.

Kerry said that you're "crazy" if you think that "a veteran would criticize the more than 140,000 heroes serving in Iraq and not the president who got us stuck there[.]" Well, call me crazy, but Kerry did just that, and has done it his entire adult life. (He actually did both in this case, so his statement isn't technically wrong.) But remember, this isn't the first time Kerry slagged active troops in combat zones as a veteran. Anyone remember his completely false allegations of war crimes and "in the manner of Jen-jis Kahn" Senate testimony? The MSM doesn't. How about his more recent comments that American troops were "terrorizing" Iraqi women and children? Kerry criticizes troops all the time. He's arrogant and elitist, and anyone that didn't go to Yale or marry a bajillionaire ketchup baron is naturally less smart than he is, which includes pretty much everyone in uniform.

But again, I'm happy. This election is about the base, and now the base is mad. POed, in fact. Michael Savage, who has spent the last few months explaining how no one should vote for Republicans, either, was on the war path yesterday, saying the Kerry comments were a "personal turning point" for him on for whom - or if - he should vote. Millions of others, unhappy with Republicans and with no particular reason to vote against Democrats, surely feel the same.

Dick Morris has more numbers:

Among independents, the percent that plan to vote Republican has risen from 15 percent on Sept. 22 to 23 percent on Oct. 11 to 26 percent on Oct. 24. While independents are still voting for more Democrats, it'’s only by 38-26 compared with 38-15 last month.

But as the Republican Party has gained among Independents, it is losing its base. Republicans who plan to vote Republican in 2006 have dropped from 75 percent on Sept. 22 to 72 percent on Oct. 11 to 68 percent on Oct. 24! Obviously the impact of the Foley scandal has yet to diminish among the morality-minded Republican base.

Foley who? Morris wrote this before Kerry's political suicide vest went off.

This may well have solidified the GOP get-out-the-vote advantage, and will serve to retain the Congress for the Republicans. I hope it does, and I hope further that this puts the exclamation point on the end of John Kerry's contemptible political career.

UPDATE: Here's the forced "apology." Too little. Too late.


PubliusRex said...

That the Democrats despise the military as an institution and view its soldiers with contempt and condescension is the worst kept secret of the party and the 527 media.

For starters, recall Dick Durbin's comparisons of our troops to Nazis and Soviets (, to say nothing of Kerry's past critiques (" a manner reminiscent of Ghengis Khan").

If you want the troops to lose or don't support their mission, you don't support the troops.

Of course, even if we took Kerry's excuses are their word, he'd still be a fool for his comments. 1) He voted for the war, 2) He has no better academic credentials that GWB.

PubliusRex said...

I should the full interest of disclosure, my comment agrees with much of Orrin's because I didn't have the patience to read through his treatise on John Kerry. I apologize for any redundancy :)

Jaxebad said...

Something tells me that you don't meet too many liberal people in person, as you have such a warped view of them. I've lived in several places in the Midwest, knowing both people who are conservative and liberal (as well as some who are -shock- neither!) , and I know better than to stereotype people based on their political leanings.


PubliusRex said...

Orrin can speak for himself...but I can vouch for the fact that he knows, is friends with and meets quite a few liberals: from that trailer park in South Dakota to his attendance at one of the most "liberal" institutions in one of the most "liberal" cities in the world.

Orrin Johnson said...

I assure you that it's quite impossible to have spent four years at the University of Minnesota, or to have gone to law school for more than 2 in Seattle without having known many, many, many, many, many very liberal people in person. Many of them are my friends. A few of them are even veterans. Not all liberals believe as John Kerry does, but a huge many of them do - including the entirety of the current MoveOn/Daily Kos base of the Democratic party that Kerry was pandering to.

Exhibit A: The Seattle Post Intelligencer referring to military service as one of the "pitfalls awaiting the undereducated".

Exhibit B: The liberal talk radio bit I mentioned in the original post.

Exhibit C: The movement in Seattle and San Fransisco to ban military recruiters from high schools.

Exhibit D: Without letting on you've had military service, ask anyone who attended the Angiledes rally Kerry spoke at whether or not they would like to join the military. Measure the quickness and volume of the snort of derision.

I'm not stereotyping all people who vote Dem. I'm taking the current liberal party base at their word, and their word is insulting as hell, factually wrong, and indicitive of why I don't trust today's Lieberman-less Democrats on national defense.

PubliusRex said...

The hits just keep on coming: Seymour Hersh, that favorite of liberals, went to a foreign country and said, "It isn’t happening now, but I will tell you – there has never been an [American] army as violent and murderous as our army has been in Iraq.”

UWLawschoolhunk99 said...

Liberal or Conservative- what Kerry said was a botched attempt at covering how uneducated he really is. Even the Liberals are distancing themselves from him and his statements. I heard on the radio this morning that although the damage is done they are denouncing him in mass. I like how the libs refuse to believe there are sources of "education" other than Ivy league schools you get in because of who your dad is or isn't.

Orrin Johnson said...

Plus, anyone who was offended by the comments or thought they were an insult to the troops was "crazy" according to Kerry, or "stupid" according to leftists like Kieth Olbermann. Since many vets and troops were, in fact, offended, it stands to reason that either they're "crazy," "stupid," or both.

But there's no condescension or insult meant there.

Cato said...

1. That picture of the troops making fun of Kerry warms my spirits every time. It's good to see they're keeping a sense of humor about this. Getting pissed and fighting back with satire is much healthier than getting pissed and just keeping your mouth shut.

2. The military is still a tremendous opportunity from many children of the lower class to advance into the middle class. Sometimes it is the only way to do it in one generation. So a point that Kerry could have made (but didn't, tragically) was that we (the upper-middle class people who make most of the political decisions) should be very careful when sending our men and women into battle, because in most cases it isn't our children we're sending. I think that should be kept in mind constantly.

Orrin Johnson said...

Cato, we don't "send people's children." Adults who have volunteered go, adults who are generally middle class and who are re-enlisting at record levels, are being sent. It is a tremendous opportunity, but it's NEVER the only one. These are the stereotypes that elitists like Kerry perpetuate, and that's why his "slip" is so false and insulting.

Cato said...

Everybody is somebody's child, Orrin.

And that doesn't mean they aren't also adults who know what they're getting into when they sign up. But by signing up they've given us, the body politic, a huge level of control over whether they live or die. So we need to respect that trust by only putting them in harm way when it's really in the best interest of the nation.

Anonymous said...

Orrin et al - I recognize that you're not literally speaking about "all liberals" or "all democrats," but I would like to point out that right now, the democratic party is so fractured and represents so many different interests that to describe the beliefs of its members generally is practically an impossible task, as they vary widely on this very topic, among scores of others.

That lack of focus, by the way, which some of those east coast liberals like to call "nuanced beliefs," is why we can't win elections.


Orrin Johnson said...

President Bush is someone's child Cato - no one "sent him" to the White House. I'm "somebody's child." No one "sent me" to the Navy - I volunteered knowing full well I'd spend time in the Gulf. When we talk about "sending people's children," it implies kids are plucked out of their schools by the Chimpy McHaliburton Storm Troopers and conscripted into service, with no say in the matter. It's not true for initial recruits, and it's even less true for anyone who's reenlisted since the Iraq war started, since WMDs weren't found, etc. It's condescending, insulting, and wrong. It's irritating when conservatives do it as a form of clumsy praise, but at least you can appreciate the sentiment. But when it comes from anti-war activists (many of whom are 19 year old college-know-it-all hippies who CERTAINLY don't see themselves as children), it's really maddening. And it follows the classic liberal idea that everyone except themselves and their fellow travelers are too dumb to know what's good for them. Hence books about Midwesterners being "tricked into voting against their own economic interests."

Tim, I appreciate that many registered Democrats out there don't share John Kerry's or the "World Can't Wait!" crowd view of the military. I know you're one of them. But the bottom line is that the party has never been as united in its crazy barely concealed anti-military liberalism as it is right now (with 1972 being the possible exception). The purging of Joe Lieberman is the most dramatic example, but when Harry Reid, Ted Kennedy, Nancy Pelosi, et al. are blogging on the Daily Kos, when Howard Dean is chosen to run the DNC, etc., then you can get a pretty good direction of where the leadership of the party is. Right now it's closer to McGovern than Truman, and that's a bad thing for the country.

For example, even though a lot of Republican voters (like me) are stridently in favor of cutting spending and serious immigration enforcement, no one can credibly say those are the positions of the Republican Party right now. That's also a bad thing, but much less bad than the anti-war appeasment Democrats who are now controlling the party platform policies.

I can only hope the Dems lose, completely implode, recognize the far left elements in their party have made them essentially unelectable, and purge those lefties. That would have happened in 1973 but for Nixon's failings, it happened to a limited degree in 1994, and hopefully it will happen now.

No one ever went broke, however, betting on any party's politicians' penchants for learning the wrong lessons of a lost election.