Monday, August 30, 2004

Post Mortem Night One

Tonight John McCain and Rudy Giuliani gave 2 very different speeches. John McCain was conciliatory toward Democrats and resisted attacking John Kerry directly; Rudy Giuliani was less diplomat and more attack dog. John McCain's speech was a snoozer that awoke the delegates only when he mentioned Michael Moore, calling him "disingenuous", leading the delegates, somehow clued in to his presence in the hall (as was the TV camera although McCain claimed later not to have known he was there) to turn and boo Moore to his face; on the other hand, Rudy Giuliani's speech was a rousing fist pumper (if a bit longwinded.) But they both did one important thing: they connected 9/11 to Iraq by reasserting the ruse that by going after Iraq we somehow went after the terrorists that attacked us. For example, Giuliani said that on 9/14, when President Bush stood on the rubble of the World Trade Center, he announced that "the barbaric terrorists that attacked us would hear from us." And according to Giuliani, they did hear from us in Afghanistan, Iraq and even Libya. Bull. Shit. What's ingenious about this argument, though, is how it basically distills in one line the basic division between Democrats and Republicans.

On After Hours on MSNBC, Deedee Myers tried to hold down the fort of, um, truth, when, in response to Ron Silver's claim that Iraq is indeed a part of the war on terror, she repeatedly said "which it's not." And when Ron Silver began to claim that there were al qaeda terrorists in Iraq as a defense of the connection, Ron Reagan held his own by responding, and I paraphrase, that there are al qaeda terrorists in this country too, and what about Pakistan, word is that Osama bin Laden is in the mountains of Pakistan but you don't see us going in there and HE actually attacked us.

Sigh. Clearly this is going to be one of the threads that connect all 4 days of the convention and the question is can the Democrats effectively wage the counter argument, such as, well, reality? They'd better. Another common theme in the two speeches was the so-called commitment of George W. Bush to defeat the terrorists. Well, if the speechwriters had been paying attention, they would have learned that in fact George W. Bush announced today that the war on terror is unwinnable and that he has no such commitment. I'm sure they would have edited the speeches to reflect this is they'd had time. Again, the Democrats have to pound this as hard as they can.

If you believe Iraq is the latest battle in the war on terror, you're probably going to vote for Bush; if you think it's a diversion FROM the war on terror (considering it took funds and forces away from going after the people that actually DID attack us...ya know, the terrorists) then you're probably going to vote Democrat. The Republicans have skillfully distilled the race down to its purest form and are making their convention about that issue. Well done. All we can hope for now is that it somehow backfires.


Post a Comment

<< Home