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Mea Culpa

I've always been one to own up to my mistakes. If I screw up somewhere, I'll admit it at least as publicly as the initial screwup was. I also won't try to hide my errors - I've always believed the only people who should bury their mistakes are doctors and mad scientists. But I'm just going to limit myself to the ones I've posted in the last couple days.

First, in my many pieces on John Kerry, I've referred to his "20-year career" in the Senate. While it is true he was first elected in 1984, he didn't take office until January of 1985. He's only been in the Senate 19 2/3 years. I know it's probably safe to round up, but it's technically incorrect, and it's been bugging me since I realized it last night.

Second, I mentioned that President Bush had signed Standard Form 180 releasing his service records, unlike Kerry. As JoeY pointed out and I confirmed, Bush hasn't. He did order the release of all his records on his authority as Commander in Chief, which some say is the functional equivalent of filing the form, but that is disputable and might not guarantee that all his records are now public. They're a lot more public than Hillary Clinton's billing records from the Rose Law Firm were after they were subpoenaed, though.

Third, and this one was a doozy, I wrote a piece busting David Anderson's chops over his flip-flops on whether to boycott the Swift Boat Veterans story. While I have no regrets about writing and posting it (hell, the fact that I ripped him up and down and he laughed at it is something I take great pride in), I did make the incredibly stupid mistake of referring to him as "Oliver Willis" throughout most of the first piece. Spoons and Michele immediately thought I was being nice to Oliver (an unforgivable sin) and gave me considerable grief, causing me to go back and notice the error. I went in, fixed it, and added a detailed apology, but left the original comments undeleted - like I said, I don't believe in burying my mistakes.

But it was my fourth mistake, the one no one called me on, that I regret the most. In my piece on 527 groups, I talked about John Kerry in rather derisive terms. I tossed around the terms "hissy-fit," "tantrum," "whining," and "squalling." (Although as a Navy man, Kerry would probably appreciate that last one.) As I quoted Winston Churchill earlier, "When you have to kill a man, it costs nothing to be polite." I should have curbed my venom and maintained my usual manner. If any Kerry supporters (or, by some ungodly set of circumstances, Senator Kerry himself) were offended by the language I used, I apologize. It was wrong. I felt it at the time, but I was on a roll and didn't listen to my conscience.

I'd go on, but that's all the errors I've found of mine on the main page. I don't have the time or space to go digging through the archives, and also I suspect the more I write now, the better the chances I'll make mistakes here. I have absolutely no intention of setting up an infinite loop of fixing the mistakes in the fixes to the fixes…

Anyone who finds that sort of thing entertaining is invited to watch the opening credits of "Monty Python And The Holy Grail."
J.


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Comments (10)

Why apologize?~Cindy... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

Why apologize?
~Cindy

Why apologize, Cindy? Short... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Why apologize, Cindy? Short answer: ego.

Long answer: I like to think I'm a better man than that. In order to preserve that self-image, I need to own up and make right when I violate it.

Devious answer: because it makes my future refusals to apologize that much stronger. "I got no problem admitting when I'm wrong. But this time, I'm not -- you are."

Honest answer: a blend of all of the above.

J.

gallant move! it's ... (Below threshold)

gallant move!
it's to funny you mention the Holy Grail, I just watched it tonight

Why am I wrong? Kerry is ev... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

Why am I wrong? Kerry is everything you said.
~C

I'm a Kerry supporter, but ... (Below threshold)

I'm a Kerry supporter, but not as much in recent days. I found the article about the 527's more necessary than offensive. No harm done there.

I wasn't very familiar with the exact problem before, but now it appears that MoveOn.org has done for Kerry what SBVFT has done for Bush.

I don't think these two organizations should be compared as equals, but the Kerry lawsuit is over the top, IMO, considering that he is defeating the very kinds of groups that have supported him.

The only two "honest" routes for Kerry now are:

1. Drop the suit.

2. Give back the nearly 90 grand to the 527's.

And I don't see him doing either. However impolitely worded, somebody needed to point this out.

Two minor problems with you... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Two minor problems with your second point, Alex.

1) By law, Kerry can't give back their money, because he can't have any control over it whatsoever. It's not his to give back.

2) It's not ninety grand. It's ninety MILLION dollars. Ninety grand is off by three orders of magnitude.

J.

I've been reading this site... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

I've been reading this site for a very long time. Sometimes it makes me crack up laughing and other times Kevin makes excellent points but Jay, if you think that Kerry is fit for command of this nation, then I can't read anything you write anymore because it's an insult to my brain. I'm from Ma and I have known Kerry and Kennedy's alike most of my adult life and I still can't figure out why Democrats just vote down the line without ever thinking about whom they are voting for and what that person will do for them. I can honestly say that both Ted Kennedy and John Kerry have never done a damn thing for any person, much less any Democrat in the state from which they came. My parents used to run the campaigns and there is no way I would vote for either one of them even if I was paid to do it!! I'm really disappointed Jay. As I start each and every paragraph posted, I can always tell who's writing it. I can't be bothered with anyone who will defend a man who made it impossible for other Vietnam Vets (my late husband included) to be heroes, to get the help they needed, who were oppressed as this guy lied about them and who didn't give any concern whatsoever about the feelings, hearts and minds of those who actually spent more than 4 months there! My late husband was a Captain, Us Army, Green Berets, Special Forces, Paratrouper, Ranger and ADVISOR. He spent 4 years in Vietnam and his hell was living with it afterwards thanks to people like John Kerry. Sorry, but you cannot argue he is a good man. Even before this war shit that HE brought up, he was NEVER a good man!
~Cindy

Cindy - I believe J is not ... (Below threshold)

Cindy - I believe J is not apologizing for what he said, but rather how he said it. He is apologizing for not expressing it in a better way.

Jay - Thanks for acknowledging that maybe it could have been expressed better. What many people on both sides of the political spectrum seem to forget is that a person's argument is better received when it is expressed in a respectful manner. I myself tend to tune out any arguments that insulting (especially to me personally!). But if someone presents it well, I'll at least listen. I may not agree, but I'll listen. And sometimes, I'll even change my mind.

Vanessa, I got that already... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

Vanessa, I got that already. I was posting from a comment made by Alex D, mistakenly thinking it was Jay. I have already apologized and begged for his forgiveness which he so gallantly gave me. See under topic "John Edwards: if it wasn't for double standards, he'd have no standards at all" we are all fine, except for AnonyMoses. :-) Thanks Jay!
~Cindy

My late husband was a Capta... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

My late husband was a Captain, US Army, Green Berets, Special Forces, Paratrouper, Ranger and Advisor in Vietnam for 4 years. The years of being an Advisor are not counted, although I do have the paperwork proving he was there. On one occasion he got shot in the knee, recuperated and went back. He ran a camp to train the South Vietnamese to kill. Like in the movie "platoon" his camp was over-run and he got bombed by one of those air bombs. I do not know how he survived it but he did. It was people like John Kerry and what was going on here that made him feel very uncomfortable being back in the civilian atmosphere after that recuperation. I know things went on over there which would happen because when it came down to it, it was either you or them and there was no one to trust. Back then he did not have psychologists or debriefing or repatriation like they do now. They sent him home as he was and as time went on, he got mentally and psychologically nuts. He would not get help because that was "taboo." I was only 20 at the time and scared to death of him. If I knew then the things I learned later, maybe things would have turned out differently for him. With Kerry doing what he's doing, the so-called war hero who can't even compare to my late husband's war hero status and near death injuries, what he said and did when he came back after 4 months of service only made those who did go to Vietnam, died, injured and the walking nut cases only worse. So my late husband had to come back to that kind of environment and what it did to him literally drove him insane. I hate John Kerry and everything he stands for - for good reason. He made the returning soldiers feel like shit and they did not have the support of the people like our troops do now. He hurt all the other soldiers of that day, of that war and the 10 year span of generations lost during that time. It was Kerry and others like him that made "homecoming" extremely hard and very sad. Whether they did anything bad during that time, they did out of fear and adrenaline and like I said, it was either them or yourself and you did what you had to do to stay alive. That war affected hundreds of thousands of men, some who will never be able to live a normal life. His attitude and his bringing it up again only opens already festering sores. These men fought for our country but those who came home, did not get a hero's welcome when they deserved it and needed it and that is not right. Kerry has made a mess of his situation. He hurt a lot of people and he does not deserve our respect or their respect, right or wrong - these men went to war to defend this country as the soldiers of today have gone to Afghanistan and Iraq have gone to defent this country. Kerry's attitude towards all the groups against him, he so rightly deserves because he didn't stop short of telling them they did wrong and that is something you do not tell a soldier. Between the govt and people like Kerry, they made the Vietnam Vets into monsters. That is not always the case; some had it worse than others. Mine had it bad. And after all the time he put in and being near death, the last thing he needed was to listen to people like John Kerry. My husband died as a result of a motorcycle accident in 1978, so you have to understand why I am so much against that man in every way. I don't think he should even be a Senator! When my husband died - he was going on 31 and I was going on 25, I never thought anything else bad could happen to me, but I was wrong but I can attest to the fact that when he died and his soul left his body, touching me and others, it was the first moment of peace he had. Life was so unfair to him at the time and his only escape was dying. I had a 5 year old child at the time. So I hate what Kerry has done and said and I'm sure all the groups, including the swiftboatveterans, the vietnamveteransagaintjohnkerry, the Pow-MIA families against John Kerry have a good reason to hate him; he has brought up extremely painful memories and is such a jerk, walks into the DNC, Salutes and says I'm John Kerry and I'm reporting to duty." was a bit over the top. He went too far and he hurt every veteran alive as well as those who never made it home, a grave disjustice. They have every right to be angry - he has torn them apart and ripped at the core of their being. Some will never lead a normal life and he has the right to put these hundreds of thousands of men down just for doing their duty? NOT!!

I know what my husband went through, I knew how damaged he was and he could not help himself. They trained him to kill but did not debrief him, give him therapy, be repatriated back into society and it was a hell I do not want to ever have in my life again. So I'm a bit testy over the fact he is using the vietnam war as his platform and I cannot blame the swift boat soldier or the pow/mia families or the other vets who did make it home for getting angry. It pisses me off because I've been through it myself.

Whether these veterans feel so strongly against him, they have a right to be. They were there and they probably were there a lot longer than four months. It doesn't matter what happened and it does not matter whether they or he is right or wrong but what is wrong is his saying he was a war hero and using that platform for his campaign. He has hurt all the vietnam vets and he has indeed hurt all veterans then to come out and salute, sayint he's reporting for duty and then doing this with the lawsuits and injunction makes one wonder. The whole point is he has hurt all the veterans from that war and taken the names on the WALL and made them insignificant is what is driving them nuts, true or not. We are a country that pulls together during tradgedy's and he is causing a huge rift among the people, demeaning the deaths and names on THE WALL plus those who did make it home one way or another to a country that hated them for doing their job as soldiers.

He brought that on himself and if the Swift boats or the other veterans groups who actually were there, making them feel that what they did was wrong in every sense of the word. Right or wrong, they all have a damn good reason to fight him. He did not get blown up, he was not shot al, he never took a bullet, he was rarely in any danger and several scratches gave him medals when others deserved them more. On the whole, David, I do not think they are lying; there's so many of them but Kerry has dug his own grave and he should stand tall and apologize to the other members that really did sacrifice during that war. And they have more rights than anyone to put Kerry down. He put them down years ago. That is extremly wrong in every way. I experienced a first hand look at the damage done to our troops then, which I hope won't happen to our boys overseas. Kerry is a hypocrite and I hope he does not get elected for if for some strange reason, I will move out of this country.

I have flags all over my property. I also have two large ones I have yet to put up. I also have a beaten up Gulf War flag. I'm extremely patriotic but I also have a lot of common sense. A curse I think sometimes. But he is not a man who should be president never mind even a senator from MA. So I'm going to still say No, I don't think they were lying because only they know what really went down over there and it certainly was no picknick in the park.

I just wanted to explain my views so you'd know where I was coming from - an experience that no one should ever have to bear. And I do this because of my late husband who cannot speak for himself. Some things are just not right and when Kerry brought up his war record, he made the biggest mistake ever by using that as his central message. Now do you understand why all these groups hate him?


I think it's time to drop this discussion line, although it won't be easy.

But war or no war and we are in a war, we really do need to support our troops, in particular our National Guardsmen and reservists who have been plunked out of society, leaving behind families and friends, losing their homes, sometimes their jobs, and if have a small business, they lose and not enough attention is being given them and they need our support, too. Check out www.walkofhonor.com which dedicates a brick to any past or present veteran and our troops over seas. It is a worthy cause. For if it had not been for our veterans of the past and the soldiers of today, we would no enjoy the freedoms we have today - as long as Al Qaeda stays out of the United States. Hope this helps understand where I am coming from and why.

Thanks for listening.
~Cindy




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