Skip to comments.To Swift-Boat or Not
Posted on 06/13/2008 10:02:28 AM PDT by nikos1121
John McCain and Barack Obama are about to face a moral choice. It will probably be made in bits and pieces over the next five months, but we can imagine it as a single dramatic incident: the adviser approaches and says, "Yes or no. Do you want to swift-boat?" If you were the presidential candidate, what answer would you give?
Swift-boat is shorthand for the brilliant, despicable Republican campaign strategy in 2004 that turned John Kerry's honorable service in Vietnam into a negative factor in his campaign. The phrase has become more broadly the term for a particular category of campaign tactics and has even become a verb. To "swift-boat" somebody is to use these tactics against him or her. If you remember the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth campaign and don't see anything wrong with it--or if you believe it was the work of "independent" operatives unconnected to George W. Bush's campaign--I'm not going to waste precious space on the back page of a national newsmagazine arguing with you.
(Excerpt) Read more at time.com ...
This idiot has the definition of Swiftboating and McCarthyism backwards. The Verona files proved that he was right. The Swiftboaters brought the world's attention to the truth about John Kerry. These were not idol unsubstantiated rumors.
If they were untrue, then why doesn't Kerry produce her service file?
Kinsley’s definition of “swiftboating” is actually “when a conservative digs up and tells the truth about a liberal because the media won’t do it.”
I didn't serve in Vietnam, but was in the post-Vietnam Army. I was personally offended and outraged to learn not only had the Dims nominated for President they guy whose Congressional testimony got me labeled a baby killer, but the POS actually was running for President on his Vietnam service. Before I'd ever heard of the Swiftees I couldn't wait to vote against that SOB.
Wow. This is brilliant
This far left liberal just swift boated “swift boating”.......
Truth, Honesty, Integrity.
Do people like Kinsley have dictionaries with these words removed, because they sure do not seem to know them.........
Swiftboating: to deflate a politicans self-created narrative using facts and history. Syn: to debunk.
The more Swiftboating the better, on both sides.
I disagree with this statement on several levels. I only agree that this happened in 2004.
Oh Yeah! LET THE SWIFT-BOATING BEGIN! Finding truth is what elections should be about!
I think the birth certificate of Obama may turn out to be a Swiftboat issue, assuming that we find that the contents of the one he’s producing is fraudulent. If the certificate is true then the matter is dropped, but like Kerry, there is a very slow release of paper on the subject.
How can the liberals talk about Kerry's "honorable service" when Kerry testified that being an American soldier in Vietnam meant acting like Jenjiss Khan or whoever, cutting off ears and the rest of it? I guess serving in an "immoral war" is honorable, as long as you're a Democrat.
As for Kinsley, I say the little dweeb should stay off the amyl nitrate.
Swift boating aside, what Kinsley needs is a good swift kick in the ass!
|Swift-boat is shorthand for the brilliant, despicable Republican campaign strategy in 2004 that turned John Kerry's honorable service in Vietnam into a negative factor in his campaign.
Yum! I love the taste of sour grapes.
....OF TELLING THE TRUTH....
There are websites questioning McCain’s military service and his behavior while at the Hanoi Hilton. These haven’t got much attention from the mainstream media yet, but as the campaign heats up they will become more prominent.
If michael kinsley and the MSM hates swift boating, then I’m all for it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
1. I do not believe anyone has ever proven any significant charge made by the Swift Boat Captains was false or that their account of events was false.
2. Those who have attacked or dismissed the Swift Boat Captains charges have pointed to other accounts that
they believe to be more credible; accounts which disagree with some of the key accusations but in no way refute or present evidence that on its face is any more believable or credible than the Swift Boat captains accounts.
3. The Swift Boat captains present good reasons why those other accounts are at the least suspect and that the primary source for those other accounts in many cases was John Kerry himself (or likely John Kerry or of unknown origin)
4. With the exception of John Kerry's crew mates all of the witnesses disagree with John Kerry's accounts. Those officers who would most likely know the facts both about specific indicdents and Kerry's general reputation and behavior as a captain with one exception are critical of Kerry.
5. John Kerry has refused to release documents which prove the Swift Boat Captains wrong on some of their key accusations.
6. John Kerry's behavior when he returned to the US tends to support the general assessment that the Swift Boat Captains made of him
7. It is categorically false, and without any basis in fact or evidence to say that the Swift Boat captains account was shown to be false, has been dis-proven or that the balance of the evidence is against them.
8. To use Swift-Boating as a synonym for politically motivated false attacks is at its base dishonest, begs the question and is an attempt to rewrite history hoping that the listener was fooled the first time around by the medias attempt to defend their candidate John Kerry.
You see to liberals and progressives it is an ‘honorable’ endeavor to undermine the United States of America.
Seems they tire easily of liberty and freedom for ALL...
Kinsey has always, and will continue to be, a far left liberal ass.
“John Kerry’s honorable service...”
Bull. He was and is now a traitor.
That he is an elected Senator is a disgrace, and the people that elected him or even live in the same state should be ashamed of themselves.
Not this time, Michael. In the words of a prominent Democrat named Truman: "I don't give 'em hell. I tell 'em the truth and they think it's hell."
It wasn't a Republican campaign and nothing the Swift Boat vets said was ever refuted so Kerry's service is highly suspect and his post-Vietnam behavior was arguably treasonable.
I suggest that Kinsley knows this and is lying.
And oh by the way.....where is that release that he was going to sign for his service record. Dollars to doughnuts that he got a BCD or a Dishonorable Discharge. The one he likes to advertise was signed during the Carter administration.
LOL. It was so honorable that someone from the Harvard Law School admissions committee said he wasn't admitted because his less than honorable discharge would disqualify him from practicing law.
Again. John Kerry promised Tim Russert 38 months ago that he would release his original DD 214. He has never done so. Less than honorable perhaps?
And it was not a Republican dirty trick. The SBVFT was a bipartisan effort. It had nothing to do with partisan politics in terms of the motivation of the Swifties. It was about the country not the Rep party.
I hope they do. It will backfire. There is a big difference between being imprisoned for five years, and filming yourself looking like a dork for three months. One is easy to poke holes in. One is not.
Let me follow up that observation with the statement that McCain is a dips*@t, that is either dumb enough or cynical enough to push Al Gore's AWG agenda. Add in the fact that he can't tell the difference between the Grand Canyon and ANWR, and he gets my vote only because the alternative is so incredibly horrendous.
Don’t sweat this dweeb. It’s just Weasel Kinsley looking for a corner to pee in...
Editors: Please forward my comment to Michael Kinsley, author of this piece of incredibly biased journalism.
Michael: You may think the dishonor resides with the Swift Both Veterans for Truth. That is certainly your right.
In actuality, John Kerry or his campaign never refuted one allegation made by the Swift Boat Vets. The one thing he could do to refute their charges, release his entire Navy record by signing "Form 180" he has refused to do. This despite repeated calls by responsible journalists and partisans of both sides to do so.
John Kerry's problem was brought about by a mainstream media's refusal to look closely at his record, both of accomplishments in the political arena and his questionable claims of accomplishment in Vietnam. It was left to the Swift Boat Vets to pose appropriate questions about the latter. The fact that several of Kerry's superiors, as well as all but a few of his fellow Swift Boaters joined the effort was telling. Your effort to denigrate these brave men is beneath contempt.
A similar problem is about to reoccur in the current Presidential campaign. The mainstream press has steadfastly refused to pose legitimate questions about Barrack Obama's background - his associates, his early political activities in Chicago, his upbringing in Indonesia, his liberal record in the Senate.
America will not elect someone who conceals his background and history. In a man with a record of accomplishment as thin as Senator Obama's, it its crucial to know where he came from, who and what influenced him and the detail of policies will champion.
If the press does not fulfill its traditional role of vetting the candidates, you can fully expect the blogosphere to fill the gap - doing the job that the Swift Boat Vets did in 2004.
Hopefully your editors will no longer countenance your whining when you fail to do your job and some responsible group of individuals does it for you. I will proudly donate liberally to such a group, as I did to the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.
Probably did nothing mor than make me feel better, but that was enough.
I vote your post as "Turn of Phrase of the Day!"
My sentiments exactly. If every dollar I have donated to politicians was as effective as the money I gave to the Swift Boat Vets, this nation would not be in the mess it is in!!!
Thank you, thank you. I’ll be here all week......
Hey, I feel better having posted this and all of you have made me feel better from your comments...
In his recent article, To Swift-Boat or Not, Michael Kinsley asserted without providing evidence that the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth were part of President Bushs re-election campaign. In fact, a comprehensive two-year Federal Election Commission investigation found that the group did not unlawfully coordinate its activities with any federal candidate or political party committee.
Mr. Kinsley also labeled the Swift Vets despicable and accused the veterans of fundamental dishonesty again, without any justification for such smears. In fact, the Swift Vets won the key debates in 2004, showing that John Kerry was not illegally ordered into Cambodia as he had repeatedly claimed, that some of his Vietnam injuries were accidently self-inflicted, and that his heroic No Man Left Behind story bore little resemblance to the event recalled by a dozen eyewitnesses. The veterans also successfully countered Kerrys infamous 1971 claim that US troops had committed atrocities in Vietnam on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command.
Despite the best efforts of the Kerry campaign and its media supporters, many voters found the Swift Vets credible and their evaluation of John Kerry relevant. A key reason was the groups ability to back its charges with evidence.
Its an approach Mr. Kinsley might want to consider.
Scott Swett is the primary author of To Set The Record Straight: How Swift Boat Veterans, POWs and the New Media Defeated John Kerry.
Excellent letter Scott... Thanks for the ping.
Thanks for the ping!
I made the connection that he author was referring to Kerry.
Thanks. Truth-telling and patriotism rank high on the list of things the old media finds objectionable.
fwiw, in my almost 3 decades of ARNG/USA/USAR service i have personally KNOWN many REAL heroes & NONE of them had ANY respect for "hanoi-john"- NONE!
CREEPS & "wannabes" like "hanoi-john" make me want to VOMIT.
Our leftists will never accept the real truth - after all, Hanoi John is a US Senator, one of our “betters”. How dare anyone question his word, particularly a bunch of Viet Nam Veterans! “Everyone” knows that vets (except for Hanoi John) are all nut cases and can’t be believed.
This vet says “screw ‘em.”
Shorthand for what? Michael doesn't define what the term means. He mentions a specific campaign attack but then there have been campaign attacks since there was dirt.
If I was to try and generalize what "swiftboating" is I would say ... A candidate touted himself as having a key strength due to a specific set of events in his life and then grassroot citizens who were eye-witnesses to those events refuted it. A key point is that the candidate first made the event an issue and then eyewitnesses responded to the assertions.
So could there be switftboating in this election? IMO only if there are citizen eyewitnesses who can prove a candidate is lying about something a candidate claims. An ordinary campaign attack or an October surprise isn't necessarily a "swiftboat".
Michael Kensley does nothing but think and analyze for a living. That's all he does. And yet he doesn't understand what happened here.
To Swiftboat or Not To Swiftboat Obama!
Let’s see here, Swiftboating means to out a liar as a liar supported by facts and documentation!
I say Swiftboat him until he cries like a baby, then Swiftboat him somemore!
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