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Bush's Guard service: What the record shows
February 5, 2004 5:31 AM   Subscribe

Return of the Son of the Bride of Bush's Guard service A detailed Globe examination of the records in 2000 unearthed official reports by Bush's Guard commanders that they had not seen him for a year. There was also no evidence that Bush had done part of his Guard service in Alabama, as he has claimed.
posted by GernBlandston (60 comments total)

 
Great title.
posted by troutfishing at 5:36 AM on February 5, 2004


9/11! Terrorists! Sadaam! Nucular! Ricin!

How dare anyone question our president in this time of crisis, this time of war! You who would have our commander in chief step away from his duties of directing our troops and leading the protection of these great United States are treasonous at best and scumbags at least.

/sarcasm

This needs to be brought to the very forefront. As Bush is so quick to send our troops off to die, it ought to be known far and wide that he didn't have the balls to serve.
posted by damnitkage at 5:45 AM on February 5, 2004


You know this didn't lose him the election last time and I have a feeling it won't cause him to lose the next either.
posted by PenDevil at 5:57 AM on February 5, 2004


/sarcasm
posted by Witty at 6:11 AM on February 5, 2004


Right, PenDevil. No one gives a damn. We didn't think Bill Clinton's manipulating the draft regs to avoid service 30 years ago was particularly relevant to his ability to lead the Republic, and we don't think that the fact that George Bush may or may not have completed his ANG service relevant, either.

Here's the thing, guys. The West is under attack by religious fanatics who are quite willing to murder millions of us given the means and opportunity. The United States is grappling with major issues involving economic growth, and inequality, the aftereffects of structural racism, providing quality education to its young and [fill in your issues here.]

The topic at hand is who will deal with these challenges. That is what should should be 'brought' to the forefront.'
posted by mojohand at 6:17 AM on February 5, 2004


I find the web design of the two pages linked to in the FPP to be on par with most online newspapers.
posted by Dagobert at 6:31 AM on February 5, 2004


I forgot to point out that this is a front page article in today's Boston Globe.
posted by GernBlandston at 6:35 AM on February 5, 2004


This story seems to be growing legs. Salon has a piece on it today as well. If Kerry lands the nomination, expect it to become a major campaign issue.

We didn't think Bill Clinton's manipulating the draft regs to avoid service 30 years ago was particularly relevant to his ability to lead the Republic, and we don't think that the fact that George Bush may or may not have completed his ANG service relevant, either.

Given Bush's re-positioning as a military leader in the latter half of his term, the public will increasingly view this as relevant, particularly if he runs against a bona fide war hero. No one cared about Clinton's military record because the economy was in good shape and he wasn't trying to be a macho badass.

The West is under attack by religious fanatics who are quite willing to murder millions of us given the means and opportunity.

Under attack? Really? Please explain, with clear, recent examples of said attacks. Last I saw, we were the ones doing all the attacking.
posted by mkultra at 6:41 AM on February 5, 2004


We didn't think Bill Clinton's manipulating the draft regs to avoid service 30 years ago was particularly relevant to his ability to lead the Republic, and we don't think that the fact that George Bush may or may not have completed his ANG service relevant, either.

Well that's not true. Clinton openly and publically loathed the military both before and during his term of office, wrote letters to that effect, and went overseas to avoid the draft, and admitted it. He also perjured himself during his second term and was impeached and disbarred. Not the same as:

Bush has stated that he did complete his service, and nobody can seem to come up with any proof to the contrary.

That's a big difference in character, despite any disappointment with the recent developments in domestic overspending that would make the most thieving Democrat blush.

if he runs against a bona fide war hero.

You mean Kerry? The "war hero" who threw his medals away in disgust at a, "anti-war" protest, only to have them later reappear framed on his wall? Some hero.
posted by hama7 at 6:46 AM on February 5, 2004


As Bush is so quick to send our troops off to die, it ought to be known far and wide that he didn't have the balls to serve.

Neither did Clinton. How about Gore, Dean, Edwards?

There is no law that states that the POTUS is required to be a war veteran. Nor is a preisdent barred from employing troops because of his lack of war veteran status.

It all boils down to what his DD214 says. If it says honorably discharged, then that is it.

Also, remember that he was a guard member, not full time active duty. World of difference there. He wasn't even in the AF Reserve. As a guard member, he could get out of the guard by moving out of state (very simplified statement, but the basic jist of it)

The constant attempts to make this an issue will wind up hurting democrats in my opinion. I think most people can see it for what it is, a lame attempt to slight his image in anyway possible.

I think people also need to realize, that a very large group of service members during the Vietnam era, didn't go to Vietnam. There was the cold war to deal with at the same time. A lot of people went to West Germany/Europe and dealt with that mission. Even more stayed in the states manning the operations here.

These issues surrounding his service should only come up if he tries to use his "service" in his campaign. The Dems should wait and see if he brings it up, then slam him with actual facts and make him respond to them. I would do it at the podium at one of the debates.
posted by a3matrix at 6:46 AM on February 5, 2004


The West is under attack by religious fanatics who are quite willing to murder millions of us given the means and opportunity.

It's an article of faith, isn't this? If we're going to play this game then we have to admit that the west has been under attack by said religious fanatics for decades now.

I'm quite tired of those who seem to think that these "fanatics" just happened to take a dislike to us on 9/11.

Bush's Guard service becomes a major issue only if the Republicans start to play dirty, and I think we all know they will. We're already hearing what a nutcase Kerry's wife is. That sort of shit keeps up, you betcha a oft-decorated vet brings Bush's service record into the fray.
posted by kgasmart at 6:47 AM on February 5, 2004


I find it far more comforting when a draft-dodger like Clinton also tries to avoid dragging the country into war, which Clinton had several opportunities to avoid. This is a far more coherent expectation.

Bush, on the other hand, sought to avoid not only the draft, but his duties in the guard, but then charges headlong into battle when other people's lives are at stake. This I find grossly inconsistent and dangerous.

People may have criticized Clinton's lobbing of cruise missles all over the place from the safety of aircraft carriers and submarines, but at least his philosophy was to put as much value on the lives of those who serve as his own.

Despite his protestations to the contrary, Bush does not value the lives of those who serve as much as his own. If he did, he would not so wrecklessly have dragged us into this mess and there would be public recognition for the bodies of those who have died. Instead, they're hidden from public view and buried secretly.

Bush has yet to attend ONE funeral of a fallen soldier. Somehow, I imagine, Clinton would have given these dead (and living) soldiers more respect.
posted by PigAlien at 6:51 AM on February 5, 2004


As a guard member, he could get out of the guard by moving out of state (very simplified statement, but the basic jist of it

If by "basic jist" you mean "completely inaccurate", then sure.
posted by ook at 7:00 AM on February 5, 2004


From the second link: "...he held a civilian job working for an inner-city, antipoverty program..."
EH?!
posted by DenOfSizer at 7:00 AM on February 5, 2004


Oh wait, I figured it out. Must've been his connection.
posted by DenOfSizer at 7:01 AM on February 5, 2004


I find it a little funny and a lot hypocritical that the same people who said that Clinton's failure to serve wasn't important, but somehow it's a big deal now that someone they don't like was "AWOL".

Of course, the other side of this equation is that It isn't true, and this was settled some time ago.

And...

It's an article of faith, isn't this? If we're going to play this game then we have to admit that the west has been under attack by said religious fanatics for decades now.

Yes, it has. And neither Reagan, nor Bush I, nor Clinton did anything meaningful. This one did - only after thousands of deaths on our soil, admitted - and that is one of the main reasons people are going to vote for him; they don't want to go back to the previous view that this is "primarily a police action" - something Kerry just stated.
posted by hadashi at 7:01 AM on February 5, 2004


"a lame attempt to slight his image in anyway possible."

Slight his image? The man was a drug using alcoholic with a felony criminal record who went AWOL from the military and then failed at every business venture he ever engaged in. He then went on to bankrupt the entire country, make the U.S. more hated than ever around the world, and get us into a losing guerilla war.

What image are you referring to? The man's image is a pampered rich kid who's jumped from one sinking ship to another his whole life.
posted by y6y6y6 at 7:01 AM on February 5, 2004


"The West is under attack..."

"Under attack? Really?..."


On the radio the other day, some talking head was pointing out that for many republicans, it's still September 12th. However, the talking head claimed to have gone to some democratic rallies recently and he said among those groups, Nine Eleven is very far away. They've moved on.

I think it's not quite as cut and dried as that. However, some Americans still believe that a war on terrorism is more important than the Cold War. Others realize the only reason western civilization won the Cold War was because the soviet union forfeitted.

A "war on terrorism" is about as good an idea as a war on drugs or a war on prostitution, and has/is/will last/ed/ing about as long as those other wars... and be about as successful/useless. I guess it all depends on your point of view.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:03 AM on February 5, 2004


I'm no fan of Bush, but I tend to give people from the Vietnam era a free pass on this issue. There were a million
different responses. Some went to Canada. Some went
into the priesthood. Some pretended to be gay. Some
joined the national guard. Some watched the lottery with
terror. Some joined. Some lived. Some died. Some had student deferments. Some got to be journalists or medics or CO's who mopped the floors in hospitals. It was a long
time ago and a different time. So Bush's record is not so
unusual. He did his service. It also appeared he screwed
up, was irresponsible, a drunk, missed some obligations. Plenty of people were messed up on something back then. Spalding Gray (may he at long last rest where he is) once recalled mixing big drinks and watching "that damn war on teleivion." I gave Clinton a pass on this one, and I'm inclined to do the same for Bush. That doesn't mean I don't think Bush is a bad president. He is a bad president. I judge him for what he is now, not for what he was as a foolish young man. I have been a foolish young man myself, so I can forgive that. It's the foolish old men that scare the shit out of me.

I also wonder why a front page news story in a major paper, on a subject that has been thoroughly hashed out everywhere for weeks, is really a FPP. But that's a metatalk issue, I guess.
posted by Slagman at 7:07 AM on February 5, 2004


The folks disputing my assertion that the West is at war are making my point for me, aren't you? Wouldn't you say that whether the next President agrees is considerably more important than what his military service was 30 years ago?

Tactics like making the President's ANG service an issue are trivial foolishness. Further, they don't work. When the Republicans did it to President Clinton, it made them look vicious and small. I suggest they made a major contribution to his defeating Gingrich in '95 and winning re-election handily in '96. And surely he would have won in 2000 had he been able to run.

There's a lesson there to be learned. This garbage is dangerous fun.
posted by mojohand at 7:11 AM on February 5, 2004


A "war on terrorism" is about as good an idea as a war on drugs or a war on prostitution, and has/is/will last/ed/ing about as long as those other wars... and be about as successful/useless.

Well, that's it exactly. The war on terror is likely to last for decades - and in fact, how will we ever know we've won? When we go, say, five years without a terror attack? Ten? Is there a magic number?

I don't think that there is. I don't think we ever get to a day where we can say, there will never be another terrorist attack on America or Americans or American interests anywhere.

But if in fact we are determined to continue this war in perpetuity, in search of some "victory" that, given the diffuse, sporadic and shadowy nature of terrorism can never really be attained, then there must be a realization that those who would continue this war are ultimately talking about more countries besides just Iraq, trillions of dollars, and God knows how many dead Americans.

So in that respect, do I feel that a commander in chief who actually served his nation in a time of war, in combat, is better prepared to make the decisions that may ultimately call for other Americans to do the same. You bet your ass I am.

There is smoke, and there is fire on this issue. Billmon has an interesting post on this. The Republicans are afraid. They should be.
posted by kgasmart at 7:14 AM on February 5, 2004


Neither did Clinton. How about Gore, Dean, Edwards?

For the record, Al Gore did serve in Vietnam.
posted by Cyrano at 7:23 AM on February 5, 2004


Under attack? Really? Please explain, with clear, recent examples of said attacks. Last I saw, we were the ones doing all the attacking.

with clear recent examples can you provide links they are not.
Last I saw, we were the ones doing all the attacking
AFT!

If Kerry lands the nomination, expect it to become a major campaign issue.

wheel a couple a photos of him doing anti-war stuff and he is milk toast sweetheart. trample out his rich wife and his rich background, parade his record and you got Dukakis again. Like the rest of you people who like the phrase:

BRING IT ON.

there is nothing more shameful then to watch someone with a chest full of medals saying so day after day, to show everyone that "I'm a hero", "I can do the job, because, I'm a hero."

then he
Kerry threw other people's medals onto the Capitol steps in 1971, along with ribbons of his own. New criticisms have surfaced in the last few weeks. For example, Ed Gillespie told the audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference that during the famous 1971 protest, "accounts of that...demonstration had [Kerry] staying in a friend's Georgetown townhouse while the masses stayed in tents."

a real solder, even in protest. if he did through his medals away, he is toast. He is a fucking opportunistic hack.

and wait till you see the campaign Bush and Co. will do on him.

you people will draft jimmy carter.

"hey, lets add in a flag"

For the record, Al Gore did serve in Vietnam.

"something about the duality of man sir"
-from 'Full Metal Jacket'
posted by clavdivs at 7:33 AM on February 5, 2004


I think the issue is deeper than if Lt. Bush served his required time. The deeper issue is this administration has been going to great lengths to conceal, distort and hide data, facts, and issues. From VP Cheney refusing to disclose Energy Council to obstructing the 9/11 Investigation to the new budget [shifting debt to after a possible 2nd term and leaving off 50 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan] and this issue, this administration is the least accountable Executive in recent American history. What gives this story legs is that Presidential candidate Bush and now President Bush is dragging his feet. Why won't he just procure the necessary documentation - there are any number of ways to verify his duty. He [and his advisors] are trying to drag their feet in hopes that it blows over. To me, this is not a sign of a leader. This is damage control, on the level of the Plame incident.

The American people aren't dumb, but we do forgive. Just tell us.
posted by plemeljr at 7:38 AM on February 5, 2004


I wonder if the Globe is going for Kerry this year.
posted by the fire you left me at 7:43 AM on February 5, 2004


Also, I wonder why Matt Drudge isn't all over this.
posted by the fire you left me at 7:46 AM on February 5, 2004


What saddens me most is that Democrats, above all those who shared the agonies of that generation, should now be refighting the many conflicts of Vietnam in order to win the current political conflict of a presidential primary.

Sen. John Kerry, Feb. 27, 1992.
posted by Durwood at 7:50 AM on February 5, 2004


SO - Clinton evaded the draft by being a brilliant student, Dean by faking a bad back, Rush Limbaugh by a problematic anal cyst, and George W. Bush signed up to fly Air National Guard planes which - it was well known - would never be deployed in Vietnam.

This seems like an apt time for the Chicken Hawk database. Motto : "The Few. The Rich. The Elite. Born to kill, Not Serve."

G W Bush's administration might come off a bit better if it hadn't been pissing on veterans and even active duty service personnel for the last three years, by continually seeking to cut benefits and trying to renege on past government commitments and promises.
________________________________________

George W - Dynastic successor to the Royal Waterboy Clan

The Bushes have not been noted for loyalty to anyone or anything except themselves and their long term allies (see Kevin Phillips quote below) and GW's lack of empathy with the "little people" is quite notable. His empathy is with the interests of the ruling elite, and his instincts characteristic of the beliefs of children of ruling classes everywhere : taught from birth that they are born to rule and that they will be accorded special privileges and dispensation appropriate to their station, as they move through life...

For this, George W. Bush would have have seen nothing wrong at all in his evasion of service in the ANC which - in itself - was an evasion from combat service in Vietnam. "W" has been given a pass for much of his life - from his pass to "serve" in the ANC while being AWOL (the technically correct term for it, despite Moore's charge) to the financing of his first oil company through money ponied up by associates of George Bush Sr. "W" siphoned nearly a million dollars from his last collapsing shell of an oil company remarkable close to - if not perhaps over - the legal guidelines set out by the FTC. But "W" got a pass, and rolled those dubious "profits" (which amounted to, essentially a financial gift to George W. by financial and political allies of his father) and rolled that money in to the Texas Rangers project. In that, the outrageous "eminent domain" land grab, far more land than was actually necessary for the construction of the Texas Rangers' new stadium and which kicked many families out of their homes - served to create George W. Bush's personal fortune as, while he was sitting governor of Texas, the lion's share of stock owned by the initial Texas Ranger's investment group was given to GW as a "gift". About 30 million dollars of stock. That's a hell of a nice gift. How about me? I'm needy and deserving.....
Tracing this back, we can see how at least part of GW's personal fortune, besides being largely unearned and was derived, ultimately, from kicking people out of their homes.

Dynastic privilege indeed. The Bush clan is - if anything - actively hostile to Democracy and the wellbeing of average Americans.

Here's Kevin Phillips on that subject, the Bush Dynasty :

"Concern about a U.S. dynastic presidency first emerged in 2000, prompted by skeptics of the Bush succession, as well as by amateur historians unnerved by analogies to the 17th century English Stuart and 19th century French Bourbon restorations. The topic gained force and more widespread credibility when the 2002 elections confirmed George W. Bush's popularity and when the war of early spring 2003 displayed his personal commitment to resuming his father's unfinished combat with Iraq's Saddam Hussein. Controversial wars and geopolitical ambitions, after all, have frequently originated as dynastic ambitions.

Other institutional aspects of a family-based presidency warrant national attention. Dynasties tend to show continuities of policy and interest-group bias -- in the case of the Bushes, favoritism toward the energy sector, defense industries, the Pentagon and the CIA, as well as insistence on tax breaks for the investor class and upper-income groups"


Phillips also notes that G W Bush chose to build his cabinet from the many of the same men who had served in his father's administration, reinforcing the point of the rather close continuity of policies and preoccupations between George Bush Sr.'s and G W Bush's Administrations : again, characteristic of dynastic successions, according to Phillips.

It is surprising - given that America's hyper-rich elite frolic and play at slumming on network TV, and not caring a whit ( and they really don't need to care of what the masses think ) or having any sense of embarrassment that they are making national spectacles of themselves* - that there should be such a furious outcry from the American right ("Class Warfare", they shriek) over any iota of populist Democratic party campaign rhetoric which notes the very real, historic, and accelerating concentration of US wealth in the hands of a fraction of a percent of the population.

George W. Bush is a very, very well paid waterboy for the interests of this tiny, hyper-rich elite - as was his grandfather, Prescott and his father George Sr. - and he does his job with zeal and dedication. The Bushes have their own personal agendas, of course. But, at base, it has long been clear who this dynastic family works for.

*Hmmm.....George W. Bush as Paris Hilton ? Not really, but I like the comparison anyway.
posted by troutfishing at 7:56 AM on February 5, 2004


Hey, bad mouth Kerry all you want, but he served his fucking time. Apparently there weren't any political campaigns that needed his help like those that needed Bush so desperatly. And as to Gore, Edwards, et. al. ...WHO GIVES A FUCK?. This article isn't about Gore and Edwards. This is about George Bush. Your president. Your commander in chief. A man who couldn't serve his entire committment in the National Guard because he was off helping campaigns, getting coked up and generally living a life that didn't include serving his country.

And it's been mentioned in this thread that Clinton was a liar.

"Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised."

George Bush March 18, 2003


So who's the liar?
posted by damnitkage at 8:03 AM on February 5, 2004


I was not prepared to shoot my eardrum out with a shotgun in order to get a deferment. Not was I willing to go to Canada. So I chose to better myself by learning how to fly airplanes.

George W. Bush 1994


If the tape of the Texas interview from where that oft quoted quote comes is still extant, then, in regards to an attack ad audio, Houston, we have a go.

For as James Ridgway asked in the Village Voice, If the president wasn't a deserter, what was he?

It all depends upon what your definition of "is" is.

"hey, lets add in a flag"
posted by y2karl at 8:25 AM on February 5, 2004


Mojohand - George W. Bush's guard service is fair game, in context, for this :

Bill Clinton, draft evader, actually cared somewhat for average Americans, and - crucially - his was the quintessential success story of the self-made American who rises from humble roots from hard work and talent.

George W. Bush is nearly the polar opposite of this. He has some talent, in the form of superb interpersonal skills and an exceptional memory for names and faces (as did his father). But it is very unlikely that GW would have become a US president - let alone the manager of a major league baseball team - had he not been born into a dynastic line which gave him, from birth, exceptional privileges and a free pass to screw up at every significant point in his life until he entered politics.

This is a crucial difference.

George W. Bush's free pass to go AWOL from his ANC guard duty without ramifications was merely one incident in a long line of cases in which he was given a free pass from his families' extensive network of political and financial, connections, built up over decades, by three successive generations of Bushes.

One can, of course, look to other prominent non-aristocratic dynastic lines - the Rothschild fortune was built upon several generations of Rothschilds with exceptional financial brilliance. The Bushes, by contrast have leveraged their interpersonal skills and ability for shrewd political calculation with the aid of an insider strategy that specializes in the art of the backroom deal. And they are superb at covering their asses - they have access, in a pinch, to a wide assortment of professional fixers. As a Sicilian family, the Bushes would be Mafiosi .

The Bushes have their talents, yes, but their rise to wealth and power has been anything but straight or ethical, or even legal, and they have kept - with a laserlike intensity - a tight focus on one goal and one goal alone, for decades : Wealth and Power. Wealth and Power. Wealth and Power. As they pursue this goal, they care little - beyond a tight loyalty to their long time financial and political allies - who they screw over in the process of achieving that family obsession.
posted by troutfishing at 8:26 AM on February 5, 2004


http://www.awolbush.com/
posted by specialk420 at 8:26 AM on February 5, 2004


I would like to point out that considerable effort has been made to find Jimmy Hoffa, without success. It's hardly indicative that Jimmy Hoffa never was.

My point is that Bush long ago ordered his records cleansed. Remember that DWI down in Texas for which records no longer exist? I remember scandal-hunters harumphing about that, too. What a surprise that his PIs haven't purged anything else of interest. They're paid to be thorough.

The old rule applies: "Nobody wants to know anything about you for *your* benefit."

So, assuming that the Boston Globe *had* found his records, could we have expected a glowing review of his military service, even if it was okay? Or would they have nit picked (like the New York Post is doing today to John Kerry), hoping to tear him down?

That is, was his "cleansing" strategy a good one (whether you like him or not)? Should politicians now do this, to "personal", not "public" history as a matter of course?
posted by kablam at 8:34 AM on February 5, 2004


Bob Somerby at the Daily Howler has been writing about the press's coverage of this story for the past week. (1, 2, 3, 4)
posted by Prospero at 8:35 AM on February 5, 2004


with clear recent examples can you provide links they are not.

Christ, that's got to be the weakest retort I've ever seen. What's next, clavdivs, "I know you are, but what am I?"

Take your lame trolling elsewhere.
posted by mkultra at 8:40 AM on February 5, 2004


and wait till you see the campaign Bush and Co. will do on him.


yes, oh, yes... maybe he fathered a black kid like McCain, actively working for the mongrelization of the races, right? or, maybe he's a Osama supporter like Senator McCleland, who only left two legs and an arm in Vietnam, what does he know about true heroes -- I never saw him in a Iraq photo-op with a turkey prop in his hands (well, hand, Sen Cleland has only one left...)

me, I watch in horror Republicans stooping lower and lower with their smear campaigns. but maybe it's my slight distaste for McCarthyism, I should probably get over it and learn to love Karl Rove.

anyhoo, interesting NYTimes story:

Another Kerry adviser was more blunt. "This is not the Dukakis campaign," the adviser said. "We're not going to take it. And if they're going to come at us with stuff, whatever that stuff may be, if it goes to a place where the '88 campaign did, then everything is on the table. Everything."



clearly, it's either/or: either Kerry hires Susan Estrich and it's 1988 all over again, or he decides to kick some ass and at least go down fighting. if he does, we'll finally see all that stuff the Gore camp decided not to mention: booze, coke, AWOL, Laura running a red light and killing her boyfriend (no alchohol test was ever performed), etc etc

then, the last-minute drunk-driving think in 2000 will be a walk in the park, in comparison. maybe Kerry does not really want to be WillieHortoned. he strikes me as marginally tougher than Dukakis (not that that's saying much, OK)


Like the rest of you people who like the phrase:
BRING IT ON.

me, I don't really like it -- it's chilling. what about these guys, clav, did they like the bring-it-on taunt?





you people will draft jimmy carter.


well, you know, mr Carter is neither a drunk nor a cokehead. no draft dodging or going AWOL in his record, either.
he wins the character contest hands down.
;)


posted by matteo at 9:08 AM on February 5, 2004


The Bush clan is - if anything - actively hostile to Democracy and the wellbeing of average Americans.

top-notch as always, troutfishing. bravo!
posted by quonsar at 9:12 AM on February 5, 2004


In the conspiracy area, following Tenet's assertion that the problem wasn't intelligence, and the arguments between the CIA and White House, I wouldn't be all that suprised if supposedly purged records on Bush find their way into reporters hands.
posted by drezdn at 9:25 AM on February 5, 2004


You mean Kerry? The "war hero" who threw his medals away in disgust at a, "anti-war" protest, only to have them later reappear framed on his wall? Some hero.

None of which negates the fact that he did serve (and was wounded) in combat, while Bush wasn't. Frankly, the fact that a veteran felt the need to protest so strongly only adds authority to his protest.
posted by jonmc at 10:15 AM on February 5, 2004


Here are Bush's military records obtained under the FOIA. Of particular importance seems to be this one, poor little torn document which may be the key, though as plemeljr's link points out, there are other ways to verify his whereabouts. Of course, the White House could just release the records, like previous veteran candidates have.
posted by homunculus at 10:35 AM on February 5, 2004


quonsar - thanks, I try.

drezdn - I was surprised by Tenet's statement, because I assumed he was simply going to cave into White House pressure. He wasn't as bluntly honest as he could have been, for the fact that he lied about the administration's heavy breathing down the necks of CIA analysts, to "urge" them to serve up favorably dire WMD intel slop on Iraq to the White House. But Tenet's statement was bad enough and so I had to wonder this :

Has Tenet, watching the White House take on water and start to list, decided to save his reputation and his ass by jumping from the sinking ship ?

I was thinking about the din of mass media shrieking and jabbering over "Titgate" - which is threatening to drown out this latest recrudescence of George W. Bush's sorry past - and I had a sudden conspiratorial epiphany - Janet Jackson was working for Karl Rove ! - Rove promised that Ashcroft would pull some strings over at Justice so that the prosecutors would go light on her bro' . All she had to do was pop out a boob during the Superbowl half time show. It also served Rove by getting the cultural conservatives into a frothing tizzy which, with a few more carefully stage managed stunts, will hit full boil by November.

It made about as much sense to me as anything.

______________________________________________

" if he does, we'll finally see all that stuff the Gore camp decided not to mention: booze, coke, AWOL, Laura running a red light and killing her boyfriend (no alchohol test was ever performed), etc etc" - Matteo, that's just the personal dirt (though I'd add a few things to that list).

Then there's the big fat juicy record of Bush Administration sleaze during the last three years to work with, as well as the issue of how Bush was elected in the first place - election fraud backed up by an activist and politically biased supreme court.

Republicans tried to shitsmear Kerry last summer - about his hair or an expensive suit or something . What I recall is that the Kerry people hit back fast, very fast and hard, very hard. In fact, they gave a lot worse than they got.

I'm not worried about Kerry's ability to play presidential campaign hardball, and he's got so much great material to work with.

I heard "W" himself a few days ago, offering a rather tentative defense of phony administration rationals for war, and what really struck me was how suddenly vulnerable he seemed, like an insecure little boy. I've never heard him sound like that before. All his cockiness was gone. He was de-cocked.

Well see.
posted by troutfishing at 10:35 AM on February 5, 2004


"I heard "W" himself a few days ago, offering a rather tentative defense of phony administration rationals for war"

I saw that too. It was like he'd almost resigned himself to the fact the turd just wasn't going to float, but he couldn't come up with a new whopper. He seemed very embarrassed to have to keep trying to sell the same line of BS.
posted by y6y6y6 at 10:47 AM on February 5, 2004


Native Nod rules.
posted by saladin at 10:48 AM on February 5, 2004


And why this suddenly matters:

Quinnipiac University national poll

Kerry leads Bush in a head-to-head contest   51%-43%
Kerry leads Bush amongst Independents       49%-44%
Kerry runs even with Bush amongst men       48%-48%
Kerry leads Bush with women                         54%-39%

CNN: Kerry leads Bush in new poll

Kerry v. Bush       53%-46%
Edwards v. Bush  49%-48%
Clark v. Bush        47%-50%
Dean v. Bush        46%-52%
posted by y2karl at 10:54 AM on February 5, 2004


I've never heard him sound like that before.

Oh, pshaw, before the Pres. Post-9/11 Great Leader days came, there were the Pres. Frozen Bunny In The Headlamps days. How soon we all forget.
posted by y2karl at 11:01 AM on February 5, 2004


Well, I guess that whole Bush-hatred thing didn't implode along with Gov. Dean.....
posted by Durwood at 11:43 AM on February 5, 2004


gee matteo, i was referring to political candidates. so go and do your part and protest those terrorist cells you have (had) in Milan

and I will do my part tomorrow as the great senator is coming to my old alma mater today. I copied that pic of Kerry with the vietnam flag behind it and will hold it up.

"what is this Senator?" I will say.

democracy RULES.

I saw that too. It was like he'd almost resigned himself to the fact the turd just wasn't going to float, but he couldn't come up with a new whopper. He seemed very embarrassed to have to keep trying to sell the same line of BS.

I saw that too and agree, he looked he was searching his mental thesaurus for alternative spin
posted by clavdivs at 12:18 PM on February 5, 2004


'alma matter tomorrow' rather
posted by clavdivs at 12:48 PM on February 5, 2004


Here are some interesting comments from James Webb (the former Secretary of the Navy under Ronald Reagan.)
posted by homunculus at 12:50 PM on February 5, 2004


how do you protest a terrorist cell, clavdivs? wave a "Welcome to Gitmo" placard in front of a mosque?
;)


not to mention,
how does holding a badly photoshopped slanderous photograph qualify as democratic political activism?

my suggestion: you either color Kerry's black and white pic, or you turn the color flag into black and white.

my favorite pre-Photoshop-era photographic smear
posted by matteo at 1:13 PM on February 5, 2004


Bush has stated that he did complete his service, and nobody can seem to come up with any proof to the contrary.

That's a big difference in character....


Fascinating. Absolutely fascinating. Bush, at any time he chooses, could provide details about his service that would clear up this issue once and for all. Why not provide details instead of these vague denials, unless there is something to hide?

Exactly why hasn't he done that, hama7? What exactly does that say to you about his "character"?

And do inform us further about your amazing estimation of "character". Do compare for us the ethics of of lying about receiving oral sex, versus the continual propagation of deliberate and obvious falsehoods that have led to the deaths of thousands of Iraqis and Americans.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 1:38 PM on February 5, 2004


saladin, you made me laugh out loud.
posted by mokujin at 1:58 PM on February 5, 2004


continual propagation of deliberate and obvious falsehoods that have led to the deaths of thousands of Iraqis and Americans.


and Brits, and Spaniards, and Japanese, and Italians, etc etc

the beauty of coalitions, I guess -- you kind of split the check so to speak, so that you're not the only nation to have to come up with all that cannon fodder
posted by matteo at 2:08 PM on February 5, 2004


bad photoshop indeed. No different then the Bush signs depicting him as hilter. wait, different. better to be smeared as a communist then a Fascist.

ah, the oswald backyard decoupage.
posted by clavdivs at 4:04 PM on February 5, 2004


Return of The Bride of The Son of Wordless Workshop.
posted by y2karl at 6:29 PM on February 5, 2004




" "Nobody ever saw him" serving in 1973, notes author James Moore, whose upcoming book, Bush's War for Re-election, will detail Bush's military record. "Not a single soul has come forward to say, 'I remember the summer of '73 when I did Guard training with George Bush, the future president of the United States.'" " (from Salon article linked to directly above )
posted by troutfishing at 6:38 AM on February 6, 2004


BUT......as Donald Rumsfeld has noted, "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence" !
posted by troutfishing at 6:40 AM on February 6, 2004


true trout, but like karl said...
Return of The Bride of The Son of Wordless Workshop.

just saying.
posted by clavdivs at 7:20 AM on February 6, 2004


Calpundit has an update of sorts. Scoll down to NATIONAL GUARD FINALE?..... And the: untorn document.
posted by Feisty at 6:57 PM on February 19, 2004


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