Thursday, May 20, 2004

The Second Post

The Second post at Any Which Way that caught my eye was posted by scroff in the Forums, under "More Of What Pisses Me Off". In the Comments under the original post, scroff and Mad Mikey were in the beginnings of a "spirited" discussion when I threw my "two cents" in.

The simple fact is, I liked my response so much I decided to be lazy and copy it here, with a little tailoring so it would "stand alone". So, here it is.
To read the original post by scroff, the ensuing debate and my untailored reply go here.

Bush 9/11 Ads Under Fire

There has been much heated debate recently concerning the use of 9/11 images by the Bush Re-election Campaign. Whether or not the ads are appropriate, they may come back and bite Bush in the ass for they serve to remind us of the greatest intelligence failure in our history.

Two recent polls have shown Bush losing ground on Kerry. From the Houston Chronicle: GOP Learns Bush, Gasp, Is The Problem :

"Perhaps the worst news for Bush and the Republicans was a question in the Washington Post-ABC survey (1,202 adults, Thursday-Sunday) that asked: "Which of these two statements comes closest to your own views: A. After four years of George W. Bush, we need to elect a president who can set the nation in a new direction. B. We need to keep the country moving in the direction Bush has taken us." Same direction got 41 percent, new direction 57 percent. Two percent, bless their indecisive hearts, expressed no opinion.

That is the type of Bush-specific finding that defies malinterpretation by the wiliest of White House spinmeisters. A clear majority of Americans say (at least at the moment) that they are looking for something different. It is one growing deficit the administration will kiss off at its peril. It is a finding that does not meld well with the overarching Bush campaign themes of steadiness and staying the course. What if the course is one on which Americans do not wish to stay?

The exact same split showed up when the ABC-Washington Post respondents were asked: "Please tell me whether the following statement applies to George W. Bush or not: He understands the problems of people like you." Yes, 41 percent. No, 57 percent."

Another poll supports my contention that the 9/11 ads will do more damage to the Bush camp than good. (From the same article)

"...Bush's exploitive use of scenes from the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in his campaign-opening television ads was seen as inappropriate by a majority (54 percent) of the USA Today-CNN-Gallup respondents."

While the article I quote is decidedly anti-Bush, the polls are not, and even Republican Insiders are beginning to question the decision to use the 9/11 images in a campaign ad. From Reuters: Bush To Do 9/11 Remembrance, Fundraising :

"Some Republicans are concerned about the appearance Bush is leaving -- attending a 9/11 event then a fund-raiser -- particularly in light of last week's flap over the ads.

"It is politically awkward -- and quite surprising," said one Republican strategist with close ties to the White House.

This Republican and others, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said there is a broad sense among Republican circles in Washington that the campaign ad controversy was a debacle that served to create a controversy while consuming several million dollars of badly needed campaign funds.

"It's hard to say there is anything other than fund-raising that they're doing well," said one Republican.

The Republicans said there is unease in the White House about the direction of the campaign, with Bush down in the polls to Kerry and seemingly on the defensive at every turn, and suggested that changes could be in the offing."

As for the tastefulness of using the 9/11 images in a political campaign ad, one of the victim's fathers stated that he was upset by the ad and would be just as upset if the Democrats used images of Flag-draped coffins of American dead coming off the planes at Dover AFB in an ad.

Only time will tell, but right now, Bush is on the run. Unless Kerry really drops the ball in the next few months, the reign of the neo-cons will be over, or at the very least, interrupted for a while.

And that is just fine with me.