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They Could At Least Try

2004-08-25

Category: politics

When some idiots broke into the Watergate Hotel to steal campaign secrets in the 70's, people were actually shocked to hear the president might be involved. These days, it's like they aren't even trying. One is almost more surprised to hear a politician is not involved.

The thing to which I refer is President Bush's national counsel for his campaign, Ben Ginsberg, has resigned because he was also advising Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. (You can find the ABC News article here.) The Swift Boat guys are a 527 group. That's a kind of political group that can get away with raising lots of cash for political purposes because they aren't involved with specific candidates (for or against). If you can show that a candidate's campaign staff is also working with a 527, it's going to be big doo-doo.

Senator Kerry and his people have long been claiming that Bush's people were behind the Swift Boat thing. This kind of incident is only going to give a black eye to the Bush campaign. It bothers me most that the president's campaign people aren't competent enough to get away with it.

According to the article, liberal 527's have raised and used far more money than conservative groups. It also suggests that Kerry's people may have influences 527's to attack Howard Dean earlier in the election process. At least they had the decency to quit the Kerry campaign before starting to work with the other groups. That's an important point.

I can see that if a person once worked for one cause, they may later work for a related cause. Just because an individual has moved from one group to another does not imply collusion. Does such an individual have an "agenda"? Of course they do or they wouldn't be actively involved in politics. That goes for people of all sides.

Ginsberg, the president's counsel guy, claims to have kept all his interactions with the Swift Boat guys completely legal. That could be; I don't have any information one-way or the other. However, we used to go out of our way to avoid the appearance of impropriety. You would think a conservative administration would understand that. As a result, I don't care if they feed this guy to the wolves. The same applies if Kerry or his people get caught.

On the subject of the swift boat thing, I would really like to see that go away. Our involvement in the Viet Nam War ended three decades ago. Unless one of the two candidates is guilty of High Treason, I don't care what they did back then. I know I've changed a lot since then and I imagine they have too. I would like to see the election get down to proper discussions of real and immediate issues.

Unfortunately, none of that is going to happen. Each candidate is as bad as the other and it's only petty little differences that will decide the election. Which laws get passed will depend more on the congressional races because it is Congress that actually makes the laws. I would almost be ready to vote for the first idiot to show some sense of dignity.


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