What Else Is In Scott's Head?

The blog site for writer Scott C. Smith. Some observations on the world we live in and life in general. And maybe some politics.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Hypocrites At The Gate

Over the last few months, as John Kerry's Vietnam service has been questioned and torn apart by a group called Swift Boat Veterans for The Truth, many conservatives have watched in glee. Conservative columnists and conservative message boards have discussed the issue ad nauseum, trading lies, speculating that Kerry had orchestrated some kind of "master plan" to get himself elected president but making himself out to be a war hero, speculating that he had injured himself to get a Purple Heart, and even suggesting he falsified records to be awarded medals he did not deserve. A group at the GOP convention even handed out "Purple Heart Band-Aids" to delegates to further ridicule John Kerry. Conservatives were having themselves a grand old time destroying a man's reputation.

The tables have suddenly turned on George W. Bush regarding his service in the Air National Guard. The Boston Globe has investigated Bush's service and, according to the Globe, there are still periods of time unaccounted for in Bush's service. Some new documents have been discovered that also support the Globe's conclusions regarding Bush's service.

Team Bush has dismissed the charges, using the logical reasoning that, since Bush was honorably discharged, he fulfilled all of his obligations of service. Never mind the fact that Bush received favorable treatment to get into the Guard; it stands to reason that strings were pulled to get Bush his honorable discharge.

Suddenly conservatives don't want to talk about "ancient history." Who cares what happened 35 years ago? Oh sure, they want to know what happened to John Kerry 35 years ago, but Bush, well, we'll just take his word that he meet his obligations.

The Sept. 8 Crossfire was a perfect example of this attitude, as Tucker Carlson dismissed questions about Bush's service by commenting sarcastically to Paul Begala, "I have to tell you, you know what? I totally -- I was going to vote for him (Bush), but now that I know there are questions about his National Guard service in 1972, you have blown my mind. You have blown my mind."

Personally, I think that what happened 35 years ago has no bearing on whether or not John Kerry or George Bush can lead the country. But if conservatives are going to ask questions about Kerry's service, then it's fair game to go after Bush.

Let the games begin...


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