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MARK STEYN: Nuanced? Kerry's story just doesn't add up
The Daily Telegraph ^ | August 10, 2004 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 08/09/2004 4:07:19 PM PDT by MadIvan

John Kerry is too strange to be president. I don't mean "strange" in the way of his predecessor. Al Gore, the first Android-American to run for president, was weird. But Kerry's strangeness is of an entirely different order.

For purposes of comparison, go back a couple of months to that fevered few weeks when Michael Moore, bigshot Democrats and the media were hounding Bush over his allegedly spotty attendance in the Texas Air National Guard during the early Seventies.

The point is, even if it were true, it fits the Bush narrative: he was a lackadaisical son of privilege who goofed around, drank too much, found Jesus, sobered up and got his life together. If you've got 30-year-old pictures of him dancing naked on a bar in Mexico when he was supposed to be back at the air base, so what? It's compatible with the official version. That's Bush: the bad stuff still fits the picture.

But with Kerry, even before any gaffes or scandals, the official narrative makes no sense. He's publicly opposed to the Vietnam War. But he volunteers for it. Then he comes back disgusted with his experience in war, publicly hurls his medals away (or someone else's: that story keeps changing), denounces his fellow veterans as war criminals, torturers and rapists, and claims that he personally committed atrocities.

But then he decides to run for president and suddenly Jane Fonda morphs into John Wayne and all those war criminals are war heroes he wants at every rally and he's got his medals back and his disgust at his wartime experience has mysteriously turned into pride in his wartime experience to the exclusion of all else.

If Steven Spielberg, Barbra Streisand or any of his other Hollywood supporters got a script like that, they'd send it to rewrite. Either that or they'd figure they'd got an early, rejected draft of the new Manchurian Candidate.

That's what people mean when they talk about how "complex" and "nuanced" Kerry is. They don't mean his positions on the great questions of the day are complex and nuanced.

Quite the contrary: for the purposes of this campaign, his entire political career – 20 years as Senator, Lieutenant-Governor to Michael Dukakis – has been dropped from his CV. If Kerry had exhibited the slightest trace of any interestingly complex view of any policy matter, you can be sure we'd have heard about it. But he hasn't.

So the only "complex" aspect of the Kerry campaign is the man himself, who's complex in ways that don't seem entirely healthy. My chums across the page were rather dismissive yesterday about "Swift Boat Veterans For Truth", a group of fellow officers who think he's unfit to be president.

Let's take it as read that Swiftees who support or oppose Kerry are "politically motivated": the fact is, the Swiftees opposed to him significantly outnumber the four who support him, which is interesting in itself. But consider just one of the items from their new book about him.

For decades, John Kerry has told anyone who'd listen that at Christmas 1968 he was on an illegal mission inside Cambodia. On the floor of the Senate in 1986, while attacking President Reagan for turning Central America into another Vietnam quagmire (wrong as usual), Kerry said: "I remember Christmas of 1968 sitting on a gunboat in Cambodia. I remember what it was like to be shot at by the Vietnamese and Khmer Rouge and Cambodians, and have the President of the United States telling the American people that I was not there; the troops were not in Cambodia. I have that memory which is seared – seared – in me."

The illegal Yuletide foray was so seared into him that he brought it up at every opportunity.

As he told the Boston Herald in 1979, "I remember spending Christmas Eve of 1968 five miles across the Cambodian border being shot at by our South Vietnamese allies who were drunk and celebrating Christmas. The absurdity of almost being killed by our own allies in a country in which President Nixon claimed there were no American troops was very real."

LBJ was President on Christmas Eve 1968, but let that pass. Here's an Associated Press story from 1992: "Navy Lt John Kerry knew he had no business steering his Mekong River patrol boat across the border into Cambodia, but orders were orders… By Christmas 1968, part of Kerry's patrol extended across the border of South Vietnam into Cambodia."

Just one problem. It never happened. Every living officer up his chain of command says Kerry was never ordered to Cambodia. At least three of his five crewmen say their boat was never in Cambodia. And if you don't believe any of his fellow veterans, read the excerpt from Kerry's own journal published in Tour Of Duty, the recent hagiography by Douglas Brinkley.

On December 24 1968, Kerry was at Sa Dec – that's well inside Vietnam, 55 miles from the Cambodian border – and waxing wistful to his diary about a quiet Christmas far from home: "Visions of sugarplums really do dance through your head and you think of stockings and snow and roast chestnuts and fires with birch logs and all that is good and warm and real. It's Christmas Eve."

I'm Vietnammed out. But it's the centrepiece of Kerry's campaign: the other day, asked a straightforward question about 9/11, he stuck to the current millennium for a good 20 seconds and then veered off into "the war that I fought in was a war where we saw America lose its support for the war, where the soldiers came back having had to do what our soldiers are doing today, carry an M-16 in another country, try to tell the difference between friend and foe. I know what it's like to go out at night on patrol", etc, etc. So, since Vietnam seems to be the only subject on which he has anything to say, it would be reassuring to know that at least he's got that right.

For most of his adult life John Kerry has peddled as his central Vietnam anecdote – the one that drove him to turn on his nation's leaders – what appears to be a complete fantasy. Why would he do such a thing? If there's a good answer to that question, maybe someone in his doting press pack would like to ask it.


TOPICS: Editorial; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: hypocracy; kerry; marksteyn; marksteynlist; steyn
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Outstanding.

Regards, Ivan


1 posted on 08/09/2004 4:07:19 PM PDT by MadIvan
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To: Pokey78; quidnunc; agrace; lightingguy; EggsAckley; dinasour; AngloSaxon; Dont Mention the War; ...

Ping!


2 posted on 08/09/2004 4:07:49 PM PDT by MadIvan (Gothic. Freaky. Conservative. - http://www.rightgoths.com/)
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To: MadIvan
Why would he do such a thing?

He's nuts. Literally.

3 posted on 08/09/2004 4:09:41 PM PDT by mewzilla
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To: MadIvan

Thanks again Ivan for bring some good sense articles here. :)


4 posted on 08/09/2004 4:10:14 PM PDT by Americanwolf (Gnawing at the shinbone of the democratic party since 1991. (And no it does not taste like chicken))
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To: MadIvan
Great read from across the pond. Cheers!


Give the LEFT a RIGHT HOOK with CouNTeRPuNcH

Get the Rally Sign and Bumper Sticker Here
www.counterpunch.us

5 posted on 08/09/2004 4:10:56 PM PDT by counterpunch (The CouNTeRPuNcH Collection - www.counterpunch.us)
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To: MadIvan

Brit Hume's Nightly News Report: They have documentation of Kerry lying regarding Cambodia story. I don't know if it will matter, and Kerry lawyers are trying to spin their way out of it, but there it is.


6 posted on 08/09/2004 4:11:41 PM PDT by rushmom
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To: MadIvan

MI, you're always one of the great posters here.


7 posted on 08/09/2004 4:13:14 PM PDT by elhombrelibre (Liberalism corrupts. Absolute Liberalism corrupts absolutely.)
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To: MadIvan

8 posted on 08/09/2004 4:15:40 PM PDT by big'ol_freeper ("Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought."-Pope JPII)
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To: MadIvan
12/25/68 = LBJ-NOT-RN!
9 posted on 08/09/2004 4:17:55 PM PDT by JOE6PAK (12/25/68 = LBJ-NOT-RN!)
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To: MadIvan
Thanks for the post!

IIII'mmm dreeeeaming of a Cambooooodian Christmas...

10 posted on 08/09/2004 4:18:29 PM PDT by SquirrelKing ("It's just a movie. ... I'd rather go to the bar across the street." - Kid Rock, on Fahrenheit 9/11)
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To: MadIvan

Steyn-a-mite !


11 posted on 08/09/2004 4:18:46 PM PDT by COUNTrecount
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To: MadIvan

Why has no one picked up on the fact that Christmas is not a holday for the Vietnamese? I was in Nam on gunboats for Xmas 1968 and I don't recall any civilians celebrating particularly. They're mostly Buddhists fer crissakes!


12 posted on 08/09/2004 4:18:58 PM PDT by Seruzawa (If you agree with the French raise your hand - If you are French raise both hands.)
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To: MadIvan
So, since Vietnam seems to be the only subject on which he has anything to say, it would be reassuring to know that at least he's got that right.

We are not reassured.

13 posted on 08/09/2004 4:19:00 PM PDT by NonValueAdded ("I actually was going to throw like a man before I threw like a girl." JFK 7/25/2004)
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To: rushmom

The Christmas in Cambodia story is going to explode ...


14 posted on 08/09/2004 4:19:27 PM PDT by Dog (Edwards threatening Al Qaeda is like Pee Wee Herman threatening Lucca Brazzi.)
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To: Seruzawa

Good point! But why should Jean allow facts in the way? And would he know Buddhism from Christianity anyway?


15 posted on 08/09/2004 4:20:45 PM PDT by mewzilla
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To: big'ol_freeper

Ouch.


16 posted on 08/09/2004 4:22:27 PM PDT by headsonpikes (Spirit of '76 bttt!)
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To: rushmom

This was actually reported tonight on Brit Hume's show? Well, Fox News seems to have grown a backbone over the weekend, if that's that case.


17 posted on 08/09/2004 4:23:04 PM PDT by My2Cents (http://www.conservativesforbush.com)
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To: headsonpikes

Swift Vets on Oreilly and Hannity tonight

Monday, August 9, 2004

8:00 pm: Steve Gardner will appear on the Bill O'Reilly Show (Fox News cable TV, national).

9:00 pm: John O'Neill will appear on the Hannity & Colmes (Fox News cable TV, national).


18 posted on 08/09/2004 4:23:04 PM PDT by Linux4Life (Kerry is BinLaden's choice)
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To: MadIvan

Thank you for delivering Steyn to us without quid{snip).


19 posted on 08/09/2004 4:23:21 PM PDT by Ruth A.
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To: mewzilla

A Walter Mitty thing perhaps?

Maybe those "orders" came from the voices in his head?


20 posted on 08/09/2004 4:24:45 PM PDT by 230FMJ (...from my cold, dead, fingers.)
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To: MadIvan

Thanks, Ivan. Bump for a later read to hubby.


21 posted on 08/09/2004 4:27:17 PM PDT by LibertarianLiz
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To: rushmom
I heard (Hume) that his spokesdweebs are now saying that he was CLOSE to Cambodia!

No Shiite -- that's what they're saying!

All this crap about the US being ILLEGALLY in Cambodia, and now they're saying it was "CLOSE!!!"

22 posted on 08/09/2004 4:27:29 PM PDT by Ed_in_NJ
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To: MadIvan

Kerry is incredibly stupid to bring this up as his major reason for being elected CIC and being exposed as a liar and a vile opportunist, or he thought nothing would come of his take on his Vietnam heroics, and he thought his lawyers could get him out of it.

As another poster (forget exactly who) states, sign the dam form to release your records!

Good post, MadIvan, thanks! I love Steyn.


23 posted on 08/09/2004 4:27:38 PM PDT by Theresawithanh ( Flush the Johns in 2004!!!!!)
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To: 230FMJ; Howlin

Narcissistic personality disorder. Howlin looked it up. It fits Kerry to a T. Scary.


24 posted on 08/09/2004 4:28:23 PM PDT by mewzilla
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To: MadIvan
On December 24 1968, Kerry was at Sa Dec – that's well inside Vietnam, 55 miles from the Cambodian border – and waxing wistful to his diary about a quiet Christmas far from home: "Visions of sugarplums really do dance through your head and you think of stockings and snow and roast chestnuts and fires with birch logs and all that is good and warm and real. It's Christmas Eve."

L0L what a putz

25 posted on 08/09/2004 4:28:52 PM PDT by mylife (The roar of the masses could be farts)
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To: MadIvan

Al Gore, the first Android-American to run for president,


Bwhahahahah~!

Steyn, He's the best~Bump.


26 posted on 08/09/2004 4:28:58 PM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: MadIvan

The mere suggestion that Bush might have been absent for part of his NG duty headlined the network news programs for days...will we hear a peep on this one???


27 posted on 08/09/2004 4:29:29 PM PDT by Akira (Experience is a hard teacher, but fools will have no other.)
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To: MadIvan
Outstanding article - it should be a 'must read' for every American. Heck I'd be happy if O'Reilly read it. And all the other talking heads.

Steyn is just plain brilliant. Thanks for posting this.

az

28 posted on 08/09/2004 4:29:33 PM PDT by Arizona
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To: MadIvan
I have a picture in my mind right now of Kerry sitting on the floor in a dank corner of his Beacon Hill basement sweaty and shivery and waiting for this storm to pass.

Hope it's real.

29 posted on 08/09/2004 4:30:51 PM PDT by what's up
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To: MadIvan
Definitely Television Ad Material!
30 posted on 08/09/2004 4:30:53 PM PDT by TexasCajun
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To: mewzilla

..Sin verguanza...That's why.

It's the Ubris, the Arrogance, the Ego with the sense of entitlement...He believes he derserves the presidency.
As all liberals, his arrogance justifies imposing his beliefs and his values (or total lack thereof!)on all of us.
All that oppose them are right wing knuckle dragging neanderthals with no appreciation of their NUANCED world.
A world of cowards, traitors, infanticides and perversion...NO THANK YOU.


31 posted on 08/09/2004 4:31:04 PM PDT by UltraKonservativen (( YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID ))
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To: MadIvan

Fab article.


32 posted on 08/09/2004 4:31:06 PM PDT by austingirl
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To: MadIvan

Nuanced?

"If Kerry had exhibited the slightest trace of any interestingly complex view of any policy matter, you can be sure we'd have heard about it."

Classic Steyn.


33 posted on 08/09/2004 4:31:39 PM PDT by KTpig
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To: tet68

Christmas 67 and Christmas 68, I was at Nha Trang. I don't remember my mamasan giving me a Christmas gift, much less celebrating Christmas. And yet the Boston Strangler insists that the South Viets were shooting at him celebrating Christmas as he violated the Cambodian frontier. Does this compute?


34 posted on 08/09/2004 4:31:58 PM PDT by PeccaryTajasu
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To: MadIvan

Bumpski!


35 posted on 08/09/2004 4:32:44 PM PDT by wardaddy (Fox News has jumped the shark......God save Hannity)
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To: MadIvan
I don't mean "strange" in the way of his predecessor. Al Gore, the first Android-American to run for president, was weird

LOL!!!

36 posted on 08/09/2004 4:34:16 PM PDT by dawn53
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To: MadIvan

Who else, could use the word 'hagiography', and make it work? Gotta love Steyn.


37 posted on 08/09/2004 4:34:52 PM PDT by pgobrien (NADER 2004....just to PO the Libs here in NY........)
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To: MadIvan
As he told the Boston Herald in 1979, "I remember spending Christmas Eve of 1968 five miles across the Cambodian border being shot at by our South Vietnamese allies who were drunk and celebrating Christmas. The absurdity of almost being killed by our own allies in a country in which President Nixon claimed there were no American troops was very real."

LBJ was President on Christmas Eve 1968, but let that pass.

Pardon me if I don't. It has come to my attention that the New JFK likes to tell people that he served in "Mr. Nixon's War." Unless Nixon and Kerry were involved in a war I don't know about, this can't be right.

Nixon figures to have been inaugurated on January 20, 1969, about a month before Kerry wangled his way out or got booted out of Nam. That is, only for the last month of a four-month tour. Johnson sent Kerry to Nam and he was back in the USA before Nixon knew his way to the restroom with the power off.

38 posted on 08/09/2004 4:34:54 PM PDT by VadeRetro
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To: MadIvan

Off topic, but America owes a debt of gratitude to Danny Williams.


39 posted on 08/09/2004 4:34:56 PM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: PeccaryTajasu

I seem to remember a Christmas or two before tet that had a lot of shooting but it was mostly Marines doing it.

Kerry's "STORY" just doesn't add up, I bet he's got a
Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry hidden some where that
he takes out and gazes longingly at ever once in a while.
"My precioussssssss."


40 posted on 08/09/2004 4:36:56 PM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: mewzilla

BehaveNet® Clinical Capsule™:

DSM-IV & DSM-IV-TR:

Narcissistic Personality Disorder


Individuals with this Cluster B Personality Disorder have an excessive sense of how important they are. They demand and expect to be admired and praised by others and are limited in their capacity to appreciate others' perspectives.

Diagnostic criteria for 301.81 Narcissistic Personality Disorder
(cautionary statement)
 

A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following: 

(1) has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements) 

(2) is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love 

(3) believes that he or she is "special" and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions) 

(4) requires excessive admiration 

(5) has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations 

(6) is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends 

(7) lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others 

(8) is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her 

(9) shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

Reprinted with permission from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth Edition. Copyright 1994 American Psychiatric Association


41 posted on 08/09/2004 4:37:33 PM PDT by Howlin (Saving Private Hamster)
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To: MadIvan
If there's a good answer to that question, maybe someone in his doting press pack would like to ask it.

Now there's an idea for you: what if the "Watchdog of the People", a/k/a the "Fourth Estate", actually did their friggin' job, instead of curling aound the feet of their Master and quietly going to sleep?

42 posted on 08/09/2004 4:37:44 PM PDT by andy58-in-nh
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To: Dog
Christmas in Cambodia

What is nice about this story is that it involves latter day lies, it is neat, tidy, understandable, and even alliterative.

43 posted on 08/09/2004 4:40:39 PM PDT by Plutarch
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To: MadIvan

Mark Steyn...YOU ROCK!

BTTT


44 posted on 08/09/2004 4:41:10 PM PDT by hattend (I'm on the Mark Steyn Ping List! I'm somebody!)
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To: 230FMJ
Maybe those "orders" came from the voices in his head?

...except that no self-respecting voice would take residence in such a void.

45 posted on 08/09/2004 4:44:56 PM PDT by FourPeas (Jerky Horn is an anagram of John Kerry. Coincidence? I think not.)
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To: VadeRetro
Johnson sent Kerry to Nam and he was back in the USA before Nixon knew his way to the restroom with the power off.

Now, now, now. Kerry's a democrat, let's not let facts get in the way.

46 posted on 08/09/2004 4:47:22 PM PDT by FourPeas (Jerky Horn is an anagram of John Kerry. Coincidence? I think not.)
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To: hattend

I want to be somebody! I want to be on the Steyn Ping list. Will I need to pick on posters who snip in respect of copyright. I sense the tension but we ALL love Steyn.


47 posted on 08/09/2004 4:48:32 PM PDT by KTpig
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To: MadIvan

Excellent article!


48 posted on 08/09/2004 4:48:54 PM PDT by Netizen (Abortion is not a choice -- it's murder. The only 'choice' is which method of birth control to use.)
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To: mewzilla

I agree. I posted a condensed version of the DSM-IV criteria for NPD on 3/15/04 on a thread about how rude this man is to all around him. Everything I've seen since just reinforces my belief that this guy is not OK. Just my opinion, though.


49 posted on 08/09/2004 4:51:16 PM PDT by 230FMJ (...from my cold, dead, fingers.)
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To: MadIvan

All of this information is forming a personality profile on the guy. He's a guy who needs to feel important, needs the accolates, wants to live the good life, BUT DOES NOT OR IS INCAPABLE OF PUTTING IN THE WORK. He wanted to be a war hero..he took the path of least resistance...maybe he turned against the war because they basically told him to leave. Has anyone ever thought of that? NOBODY LIKED HIM, they tell him to leave. According to his Commander, he said he didn't want to, that he wanted to fight for his Country, but he leaves the next day and becomes and anti-war spokesperson, getting the attention he craves. He wants to be rich...so he marries the wealthiest woman he can find. It's a pattern through his life. He's a Senator, but he rarely shows up for work. GOD HELP US if this guy wins.


50 posted on 08/09/2004 4:52:56 PM PDT by Hildy (John Edwards is to Dick Cheney what Potsie was to the Fonz.)
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