Notes on the Atrocities
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Saturday, March 13, 2004  

Speaking of tepid reviews, David Brooks gets one for floating out a trial balloon against John Kerry. So far, Kerry lacks the access label through which conservatives will target their assaults. That is, the "anger" or Howard Dean or Bill Clinton's "slickness." Brooks tries to argue that Kerry holds no strong views on foreign policy, apparently in contrast with his monochromatically moral main main, Dubya.

Kerry has made clear that if he is elected president, the nation will never face a caveat shortage. He has established the foragainst method, which has enabled him to be foragainst the war in Iraq, foragainst the Patriot Act and foragainst No Child Left Behind.

Clever, no? He's introduced a new term! But forget the cleverness (which isn't) and forget the argument. Kerry is on the winning side of this issue. He supported the initial vote on Iraq, but criticized the White House's handling of it. Exactly as voters did. Oh, and it also raises the specter of another past war, where Kerry served his country and earned the right to criticize his leaders' judgment. Exactly as the voters did. The "foragainst" argument opens up that can of worms as well. If pursued, this line of argument might make Brooks coin a phrase for Bush: "for wars I don't have to fight."

posted by Jeff | 9:31 AM |
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