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Kevin Drum earlier today:

SWIFT BOATS....I hope nobody minds if I ignore the whole Swift Boat veterans thing. These people are certifiable lunatics, and I just can't stand the thought of wasting neurons over them. I'm sure you can find plenty of coverage elsewhere from hardier souls if you're really in the mood to torture yourself.
Kevin Drum later in the day.
WAS BUSH AWOL?....ANOTHER LOOK....Since the Swift Boat lunatics are insisting that we bring the early 70s back into the news, it's back to the 70s we shall go. But not quite to the same place as the Swifties.

Instead, let's take a look at some new evidence about George Bush's infamous five-month absence from the National Guard during 1972.


Question John Kerry's service record you're a lunatic, question George Bush's service record you're an blogosphere superstar.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Misdirection:

» In Search of Utopia linked with My Millionaires are Going to Kick Your Millionaires A**

» Allah Is In The House linked with http://www.allahpundit.com/archives/000772.html

» MuD & PHuD linked with Swift Boat Vets

Comments (19)

You, sir, are on what's kno... (Below threshold)

You, sir, are on what's known in the biz as "a fucking roll."

Of course, being a lunatic ... (Below threshold)

Of course, being a lunatic and a blogosphere superstar are not mutually exclusive of one another.

The only reason they want t... (Below threshold)

The only reason they want to raise GWB is because they cannot successfully defend Kerry.

How can anyone in their right mind allow the (D) party decide for us what honorable service is?!? WTF is that about? When the number of people who will attest to Kerry's record and performance in Vietnam come out and say "nay", all you hear is condemnation. When we hear one or two "brothers" come out for Kerry, saying they too served with Kerry in Vietnam, they are to be believed?

The only honorable actions Kerry took in Vietnam were those taken when his or another's life was in danger - the minumum expectation in combat from what I recall from the Marines. Every last thing he has done since, has done nothing to save anyone anywhere or to make anyone safer - his senate record proves it.

His cousin's contracts with Hanoi might be another, I don't know. . .

So how now is military service the measure of a man? One generation they malign those who fought what then they called an "unjust" war, only to come back to the country thirty years later, while we are under attack, and push forth one of a handful of men oe the planet who have their pictures hanging on a museum wall in Ho Chi Minh City in their honor!?!?

I'll take the dumb yale, harvard graduate, jet pilot, commander-in-chief the military actually respects, country boy from Crawford anyday.

At least I can respect the personal path GWB took to subdue his demons when Kerry has had everything handed to him and sh*t on just about anyone who "doesn't know who he is".

To go from drunk to president is a much more respectable path than Geneva to DC.

It was Kerry himself who ca... (Below threshold)

It was Kerry himself who came back from Vietnam and publicly reported he had taken part in burning villages, shooting at innocent civilians and other activities that were war crimes. And today he tells us he’s proud of his Vietnam service and we can count on him as president now because he did so well then.

Well, what if Lt. William Calley was a good soldier almost every day he was in Vietnam? What if he could prove that, except for March 16, 1968, at My Lai, he served with courage and honor? Could we count on him as president?

I might suggest that there ... (Below threshold)

I might suggest that there is a qualitative difference between discussing the quite dubious assertions of individuals of dubious credibility, and the presentation of quantitative data from records released by the White House that, so far, has not been disputed.

of course, I'm not a freeping idiot, so your results will probably vary

Just to point out the obvio... (Below threshold)

Just to point out the obvious: It's the right-wing loons who have chosen to bring up the Vietnam era and debate the histories and heroics of the presidential candidates.

If the "swift boat boys" want to talk about what Kerry's actions in the war, it's totally legit for Kevin Drum to take another look at the actions Bush took to avoid the war.

That doesn't mean the swifties are sane or truthful - it just means the topic is back on the table.

Hey, if it wasn't for doubl... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Hey, if it wasn't for double standards, some people would have no standards at all.


We really need to have a fu... (Below threshold)

We really need to have a fund raiser to buy Kevin Drum a mirror.

Oregonian: you're joking, r... (Below threshold)

Oregonian: you're joking, right? The entire theme of Kerry's campaign has been "John Kerry: He Served In Vietnam!"

Kerry was in Nam for 4 mont... (Below threshold)

Kerry was in Nam for 4 months are requested his purple hearts.

Bush was a pilot and was in the National Guard for 5 years.

Once again, Drum needs to g... (Below threshold)

Once again, Drum needs to go back to catblogging.

Even Kevin Drum can't spin a catblogging post into a Bush-bash. He's just not that good.

Oregonian,Might I ... (Below threshold)


Might I suggest you read one of the posts previously presented by this fine web log. It might clarify your clouded point of view concerning the origins of this round of "my guy served in the military":

Kerry’s speech: By the numbers

"Time John Kerry spent serving in Viet Nam: 4 months
Time John Kerry spent serving in the United States Senate: 20 years

Total length of time of Kerry’s active military service: 4 years
Total length of time of Kerry’s holding of public office: 27 years

Number of references to his Viet Nam service in Kerry’s acceptance speech: 14
Number of references to his Senate service in Kerry’s acceptance speech: 2
Number of references to his non-Senate public service in Kerry’s acceptance speech: 2"

So how now do the right-wingers bring this up?

If Kevin Drum can prove Bush was AWOL by producing the documents to prove it, goody for him. I do not see why it matters in the end what a man did 30 years ago from what I am told by those who defend Kerry's anti-war activities and his false testimonies to Congress.

Once we put all that behind us, we then can talk about the political accomplishments of our candidates and then too, you might find the conversation as short as this one.

So Kevin wants to ignore th... (Below threshold)

So Kevin wants to ignore the "lunatics" who make supposedly baseless claims about what people did in Vietnam.

In that case, he should start by ignoring the Dems' nominee, based on his lunatic claims in front of a Congressional hearing.

Kerry runs relentlessly on ... (Below threshold)

Kerry runs relentlessly on his Vietnam service, has Max Cleland and a gaggle of supportive swift boaters at the convention, but it's "right wing loons" who are putting his service in the public debate?

Egad, that's a stretch, Oregonian. Seinfeld said it best, "Good luck with aaallll THAT"

JCrue,Perhaps I'm ... (Below threshold)


Perhaps I'm incorrect (I'm not), but the Swift boat loons resurrected the Kerry narrative prior to last weeks Democratic National Convention.

Also, are any of you gentleman interested in what the Swift boat loons had to say about Kerry during his 1996 senatorial campaign against Weld? How 'bout the one before that? In his House races?

Somehow I didn't think so. (Hint: Weren't saying the same things then).

Eric,The Swift Boa... (Below threshold)


The Swift Boat group has vocally opposed Kerry since it became clear he would be the nominee.

You are right I don't care what they said before. Kerry had not been the (D) candidate for the Presidency before. It seems to me the Swift Boat folks know where to draw the line when it came to their supporting him.

We could get closer to the bottom of this by requesting Kerry's military and medical records be released like GWB's were. We could find out what his fitreps say and verify some of the claims the Swift Boat folks have made.

I am not afraid of full disclosure for anyone. I believe it is our right to know every last thing about the men who want to lead this country.

I believe the Swift Boat folks have the right to change their minds after all this time. The (D)s are trying to convince of the same thing concerning just about everything Kerry has said or done.

j, you can access Kerry's m... (Below threshold)

j, you can access Kerry's military records on his web site. But be forewarned before you go jumping down that hole, my read of his fitness reports through the filter of my 20 years of Naval service tells me there's no there there.

And these are 100% of his r... (Below threshold)

And these are 100% of his records?

Thanks for the tip.

Probably not 100%, but I do... (Below threshold)

Probably not 100%, but I don't put much stock into that. I'm kinda surprised that they could come up with as many documents as they did, considering it was 35 years ago.






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