Friday, October 1, 2004

bush/kerry debate comment by hugh hewitt

Thursday, September 30, 2004

by Hugh Hewitt (emphasis mine)

"With close to 30,000 visitors in the last hour, I am overwhelmed by e-mail of three types. First, from the lefties:" You stupid, %$#@* fool,etc. Kerry killed Bush. The forces of the left are on the march. We must leave Iraq! We must buy off Kim Jong Il! We need the approval of the French!"

From spooked Bush-supporters: "Most of the MSM talking heads are saying Kerry won on points!" True, and some of them are even Bush supporters. Which is why I watch the debates alone, which leads to a very different conclusion than my days of debate watching in television studios with their pressure of the collective voice pushes you towards "don't be wrong." So you overanalyze and over-react. MSM talking points thought that Kerry might pull a Gore, which would have finished him off. He didn't. He executed an excellent retreat to the left side of his party, and secured 45% in the general election. Ho-hum. The same folks that declared his Boston salute a brilliant bit of theater are now saying he's back in the race. Wrong in July, and wrong in September. Why?

Because as group three notes: "America will never elect a man who believes in (1)"global tests," or (2)that we can't be trusted with 'bunker-busters.'" Kerry trotted out vintage nuclear freeze thinking tonight, arguing that the United States' development of a new generation of nukes is a bad thing. No, it is not, because we are a good and responsible country. End of debate, because Kerry's distrust of our weaponry is really a distrust of our national purpose. As the president kept saying, it is about the core of the candidates, and at Bush's core is a certainty about America's purpose in the world and its essential goodness. At Kerry's core, despite many protestations to the contrary, is a deep suspicion of America with its nukes, its weapons, its preemption and its resolve to go it alone if necessary.

There's lots of other parts of Kerry's presentation that will melt tomorrow like a chalk sketch in a thunderstorm. Selling nuke fuel to Iran? "Outsourcing" Tora Bora? Here's my favorite e-mail of the night:

Kerry’s comment stating that President Bush “outsourced” the fighting in Tora Bora was a direct slap in the face of all Special Operations soldiers. The whole Afghan campaign is a classic “Unconventional Warfare” scenario. A UW mission is one where teams of Green Berets enter a denied area (Afghanistan) and train a rebel force to overthrow a rogue government. Our Special Forces soldiers in Afghanistan accomplished in weeks, what Alexander the Great and the Soviet Union could not accomplish in years. John Kerry is an idiot.
Former SOTA Team Leader
10th Special Forces Group (Airborne)."

Kerry didn't pull a pratfall, which is a very good thing for the GOP. Bush will be re-elected and Kerry soundly defeated on the basis of their ideas about American power and the conduct of the war. No excuses about the left's candidate's inability to get the message down. Kerry got it down, and he delivered it, and it will be rejected. Bush's message, by contrast, will be accepted, confirmed, embraced. The strongest nation in the world is also the best nation in the world, and its voters will not trade in a president certain of that fact for one interested in passing the tests laid down for us by Chirac or Shroeder, or distrustful of our stewardship of nuclear weapons.

So don't turn off the talking heads. Study them and make notes on the necessity of ignoring the herd. You came to the right place. Would I like the president to deliver a better comeback? Four years ago I would have said yes. Now I am not so sure. I like him to get the big stuff right. And he has for nearly four years, and he did again tonight."

Hugh Hewitt

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