Saturday, August 21, 2004

Vintage is good in wine, not wars.

Fred Barnes has a wonderful way of weaving history into current analysis. The Weekly Standard will have his new piece, The Bloody Shirt is Back, in its August 30 issue. An excerpt that captures a thought rattling around my brain within the web of his writing talent:

"The Kerry campaign now treats President Bush the way Republicans dealt with Democratic presidential nominee Grover Cleveland in 1884. Republicans pointed out Cleveland hadn't served in the Civil War. At a Kerry campaign press conference last week, Clark characterized the two candidates this way: "One man volunteered to serve his country. He volunteered to go to Vietnam. He volunteered a third time to command a Swift boat in one of the most dangerous activities in the war. The other man scrambled and used his family's influence to get out of hearing a shot fired in anger."

"There's a problem in comparing the Kerry and Bush war records. Kerry needs to play up his in an effort to show he would be a tough commander in chief. Meanwhile, Bush's record as a National Guard fighter pilot is not particularly relevant. He has been commander in chief for more than three years, allowing voters to judge him on his actual performance rather than on military records more than three decades old."

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