The left atacks its own media

Tom Bevan:


The flip-flop label stuck to John Kerry because he got caught uttering one of the most stupefying phrases in election history ("I voted for the $87 billion before I voted against it") which struck the American people as incontrovertible evidence that he was, in fact, a flip-flopper.

The charge that Kerry was somehow treated unfairly by the media because more than a hundred of his fellow veterans came forward to say he was unfit to be Commander in Chief because of his actions both during and after Vietnam also falls flat. The press did just as big of a number on Bush over a few missing records from his days in the Texas Air National Guard. Someone even went so far as to forge documents about the story and the nice folks at CBS were good enough to put them on air for a national audience in the run up to the election. The mind strains to imagine what the press would have done if 100 of Bush's fellow Air National Guardsman had come forward to say he was unfit to serve.

The reason Democrats cannot shake the label they are soft on national security matters is because they do, in fact, constantly say and do things that lead people to believe that they are soft on national security. It's not because of some cunning strategy on the part of GOP strategists, for example, that Democrats gave Michael Moore a seat of honor next to Jimmy Carter at the DNC. Neither the GOP nor members of the media are responsible for electing Howard Dean as the leader of the Democratic Party or embracing the loony-antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan. And we have to assume, barring some evidence to the contrary, that Jack Murtha was acting under his own power and not as a GOP agent when he took to the floor of the House and called for the immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

Daou is right: there is a narrative running through all these collective events that Democrats are soft on national security. But that narrative exists not because of some complicated, subconscious tinfoil hat theory about GOP manipulation, but because Democrats put it there - in 1972. The legacy of McGovern is going to continue to haunt Democrats until they come out of denial and deal with it. That isn't going to happen while the base continues to convulse over members expressing the even the most moderately hawkish views (like Hillary Clinton) or running the hawks out of the party altogether (like Joe Lieberman).

Daou's piece is worthy of comment not only because Daou was a member of Kerry’s 2004 team but because Markos Moulitsas, liberal blogger and self-described "netroots” strategist who enjoys a budding influence within the Democratic party, raised a few eyebrows the other day when he said Daou's essay "may be the most important thing I've read in a long time."

This should concern Democrats who are serious about winning elections. The mainstream media has been, and for the most part continues to be very sympathetic to Democratic causes and candidates. Latching on to some harebrained, up-is-down theory of GOP media manipulation to help explain Democrats’ recent failure at the polls is more than a sign of frustration, it’s a signal that some in the party are in deep denial and aren’t willing to face up to certain realities and deal with them accordingly.

Fundamentally what the left objects to is that conservatives have freedom of speech. They do not want to hear what conservatives have to say and they really do not want voters to hear what conservatives have to say. That is why they want to shut down talk radio and Fox News. They think it is dangerous if conservative points of view are presented in a positive fashion. That is why the left champions political corectness and speech codes. They hate hearing points of view that are inconsistent with their orthodoxy. Any main stream media outlets that let the conservative point of view be expressed are committing heresy in the eyes of the left.

The left resents truthful information that is harmful to their cause. This is a fatal weakness. A good trial lawyer does not attempt to suppress information that appears to be negative to his client. He embraces it and attempts to explain it in a positive light. He knows that the jurors will be unforgiving to his client if he tries to deny obvious truthful information. This is something that the Democrat left does not get. Perhaps they should consult with one of their major constituencies, the trial lawyers. They might also try understanding why veterans who were, to use one of the lefts favorite words these days, smeared by John Kerry when he came back from Vietnam are resentful and do not hold him in high regard. If they had tried to understand this anger they could have addressed it or picked a candidate who did not have this flaw. Instead they tried to invalidate the feelings of these veterans. That was a losing proposition and they continue to lose everytime they use phrases like the "Swiftboating" of etc. Like the Willie Horton ads, the Swiftboat ads were effective because they pointed out a flaw in a candidate. While liberals are willing to ignore these flaws or do not see them as flaws, many in the US do not chose to ignore them and do see them as serious flaws.


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