Thursday, November 02, 2006

This Kerry Thing

I've got to say something about this Kerry situation. It is just so perfect.

Kerry screwed up.

He was supposed to say:
"Do you know where you end up if you don't study, if you aren't smart, if you're intellectually lazy? You end up getting us stuck in a war in Iraq. Just ask President Bush."

Instead he said:
"Education, you know, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq."

Well, the guy doesn't have a career in stand-up, that part's clear.

The President went out campaigning and demanded that Kerry apologize to our troops. Oh, the uproar!

But look, this whole situation is a microcosm. It's a perfect laboratory example of the kind of insanity we have been dealing with here in Montgomery County and all across the country.

Nobody in their right mind believes that Kerry was saying that the troops in Iraq are a bunch of undereducated losers. Nobody really believes that.

But the way things are, this is as good as reality. He slipped up, he screwed up his "joke," and the nuts jumped on it as if he'd really said something outrageous.

We have seen this again and again in our controversy. The ... other side ... takes some innocuous phrase in a curriculum document, and makes it out that the schools are teaching oral sex in fifth grade, or they're promoting homosexuality, or they're trying to tell students that it's all right to be promiscuous. We have heard so much of that stuff.

And it's the same thing: misconstrual. Everybody knows Kerry wasn't badmouthing the troops. I can state for a fact that anybody who honestly believes he was criticizing the soldiers in Iraq is an idiot. Certified. Factory-built. Dyed-in-the-wool. Idiot.

But that doesn't mean they can't go to the newspapers with it.

The historic theme of our day is the disintegration of reality. Illusion has replaced perception. Wishing has replaced thinking, as wishes have replaced facts. Faith has replaced knowledge. Fear has replaced reason. Pretending has replaced believing.

It doesn't matter what Kerry said or what he meant. It really doesn't matter to the President, to John McCain, or Ken Mehlman, or any of the others who have treated this as something it's not. The reality of the situation is irrelevant.

What matters is that Kerry said something that could easily be taken out of context, easily twisted into an ugly sound-bite, and used against him. Did you see the apparently genuine expression of outrage on President Bush's face yesterday, in his campaign speech, as he told his worshipful audience what Kerry had said?

Keith Olbermann hit it on the head. It's one of three things. Maybe Bush is so stupid that he doesn't understand that it was him that Kerry was insulting; maybe he is so cynical that he decided to pretend that Kerry had actually attacked the troops; and maybe he has conflated the two, and presumes that a personal attack on him is the same thing as attacking the troops. (Read the full transcript, it's very good.)

Yes, this situation is a perfect summary of the sad state of America today.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The entire religious right, including the CRC, are all closted gays.

Gay escort claims sex tryst with preacher

November 02, 2006 1:19 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

I don't really think that is so. There are some who think sex is evil and bad and only for procreation. As the British told their daughters, "close your eyes and think of England." What did Shelby Knox say she learned "sex is bad and dirty- so save it for marriage"

November 02, 2006 5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Personally, I don't believe Kerry's version of what he meant to say. I think he said what he meant, he just didn't think through the implications. He's an elitist. That's one reason the voters never warmed up to him.

November 03, 2006 3:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are free to believe what you want to believe. We all are.

Everyone knows that Bush is a *joker* when it comes to hard work, especially in academia. Rather than urging American students to work hard to attain knowledge and high grades, he encourages mediocrity. This parent does not appreciate the efforts of this so-called "edgeukayshun" president and neither do many others.

"DUBYA: I appreciate the Secretary of Energy joining me today. He's a good man, he knows a lot about the subject, you'll be pleased to hear. I was teasing him -- he taught at MIT, and -- do you have a PhD?
DUBYA: Yes, a PhD. Now I want you to pay careful attention to this -- he's the PhD, and I'm the C student, but notice who is the advisor and who is the President. "
-- Yes, we've been noticing that for some time now... Lusby, Maryland, Jun. 22, 2005

"DUBYA: Andrew Biggs is with us. He is the Associate Commissioner for Retirement Policy of the Social Security Administration, Washington, D.C. In other words, he is an expert on the subject. Andrew, step forth. Let the people of Arkansas -- no, sit forth -- let the people of Arkansas --
DR. BIGGS: Thanks very much.
DUBYA: Tell them whether or not we got a problem or not, from your perspective.
DR. BIGGS: Put simply, we do, in fact, have a problem.
DUBYA: By the way, this guy -- PhD. See, I was a C student. He's a PhD, so he's probably got a little more credibility. I do think it's interesting and should be heartening for all C students out there, notice who's the President and who's the advisor. All right, Andrew, get going. Andrew's got a good sense of humor. "
-- Yeah, the more important guy is a C student, and the less important guy is a PhD. It's hilarious! Little Rock, Arkansas, Feb. 4, 2005

"To those of you who've recieved honors, awards and distinctions, I say well done, and to the C students... I say, you too can be President of the United States."

Kerry was attempting to continue the "joke" Bush made on these and other occasions and to turn it back at him. If Kerry aspired to be a stand up comedian I'd have to agree that his delivery needs work.


November 04, 2006 5:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, he wasn't. Bush, by the way, received better grades than Kerry in the Ivy League.

November 05, 2006 1:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kerry's obviously the smarter of the two because he doesn't go around bragging about holding high elected office to US students while implying that earning mediocre grades means you will get a better job than those who earn "honors, awards and distinctions." Bush should knock it off, especially since during his watch, the US has continued to "lose ground in education" among industrialized nations.

"Among adults age 25 to 34, the U.S. is ninth among industrialized nations in the share of its population that has at least a high school degree. In the same age group, the United States ranks seventh, with Belgium, in the share of people who hold a college degree.

By both measures, the United States was first in the world as recently as 20 years ago, said Barry McGaw, director of education for the Paris-based Organization for Cooperation and Development. The 30-nation organization develops the yearly rankings as a way for countries to evaluate their education systems and determine whether to change their policies."


November 05, 2006 11:46 AM  
Blogger JimK said...


November 17, 2006 2:21 PM  

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