07 July 2008

Response to Comment

The following is a respone to a comment made on Former Democrat Presidential Candidates Say the Darnedest Things.

Beachmom,

First let me admit that Mr. McCain was not my first, or second, choice on the Republican side. I agree that he has changed his stance on many issues – most notably on immigration and Bush’s tax cuts. I also agree with you that there is a long history between Mr. McCain and Mr. Kerry. It seems reasonable that the two had a falling out at some point (after 2004?). That Mr. McCain visibly showed anger does not bother me. I’d rather that than an empty suit.

My attitude toward Mr. Kerry is, I suspect, forever tainted by his presidential run in 2004. I spent a fair amount of time trying to decide if he would be a good alternative to Mr. Bush (43); like many folks who voted for him, I was more than a little upset at his “compassionate conservatism”, which felt more like big-government bureaucratic money pits than anything else. What I found then, in 2004, in Mr. Kerry was quite disappointing; not worth the change. His equivocation on positions was both comical and embarrassing; who would take a man seriously who “voted for it” before he “voted against it”? His voting record in the Senate – both for and against things – was also something that I could not support.

But what disturbed me most was his incessant leaning on his military career while demanding that it never be questioned. What I learned about his time in the military, coupled with his actions immediately afterwards, has forever tainted Mr. Kerry in my opinion. Those who called the questioning “swift boating” (with all of the negative connotations intact) missed the boat, so to speak. There were, and are, serious questions about Mr. Kerry’s military career still waiting for answers. To my knowledge, Mr. Kerry has never allowed his military career to be fully vetted by the public. He has also never answered fully for his role in the Winter Soldier ruse. Obviously, this list is not inclusive, but it is instructive.

So when I read about Mr. Kerry popping off on his Senatorial colleague, I have to take issue with what he says. I do not think that I was simply dismissing it in my last post. Indeed, on one point, Mr. Kerry is spot on (the Iraq Sunni/Shia point). But the rest of the comments he made (which I posted) are nothing more than political theater. They are not meant to enlighten us in any particular way or deepen the political debate.

One thing that I must watch for in my writing is that from time to time I allow deep personal feelings about someone to press a little too hard on me. While this is not always a bad thing, it should be recognized and dealt with appropriately. Perhaps I allowed my judgment of Mr. Kerry’s words on Sunday to be overly shaded by my judgment of his character. Perhaps I was a bit too harsh. But I don’t think characterizing Mr. Kerry’s words on Sunday as hyperbolic or preposterous is over the top…or dismissive, for that matter. Be that as it may, I shall renew my efforts of self-criticism prior to posting.

Thank you very much for your comment, and thank you for reading.

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