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Pre-traumatic Stress Syndrome
Posted by: McQ on Friday, August 10, 2007

Charles Krauthammer distills the essence of the Beauchamp kerfuffle in three paragraphs:
We will soon learn if there actually was a dog killer or a bone wearer. But the New Republic seems not to have understood how the Kuwait "detail" undermines everything. After all, what made the purported story interesting enough to publish? Why did the New Republic run it?

Because it fits perfectly into the most virulent narrative of the antiwar left. The Iraq war — "George Bush's war," as even Hillary Clinton, along with countless others who had actually endorsed the war, now calls it — has caused not only the sorrow and destruction that we read about every day. It has, most perniciously, caused invisible damage — now made visible by the soul-searching of one brave and gifted private: It has perverted and corrupted the young soldiers who went to Iraq, and now return morally ruined. Young soldiers like Scott Thomas Beauchamp.

We already knew from all of America's armed conflicts — including Iraq — what war can make men do. The only thing we learn from Scott Thomas Beauchamp is what literary ambition can make men say.
Beauchamp had a particular ambition. He also apparently had a particular bias concerning war. And he felt moved to generate a narrative which sustained that bias. The New Republic, whether it will admit it or not, shared that bias and bought into that narrative. That is indicated by the fact that they considered the woman/IED story - which took place outside of the warzone and before Beauchamp ever deployed to the warzone - to simply be a "mistake" with no apparent understanding or care that the "mistake" completely invalidated the premise of the stories.

That to me is the most telling part of this entire incident. I sometimes chuckle at commenter Robert Fulton's obsessive and persistent tracking of the "Liberal Narrative". But that is precisely what Krauthammer is talking about here, at least as it pertains to war.

This isn't a new thing, of course. Another interesting example involves none other than John Kerry. Beldar at Beldar Blog reminds us of it. This from an August 2004 post by Beldar:

From biographer Douglas Brinkley's Tour of Duty: John Kerry and the Vietnam War, we get this powerful portrait of young John Kerry's anguish, quoting a lengthy letter he wrote to his sweetheart (pp. 82-83; boldface mine):

Judy Darling,

There are so many ways this letter could become a bitter diatribe and go rumbling off into irrational nothings.... I feel so bitter and angry and everywhere around me there is nothing but violence and war and gross insensitivity. I am really very frightened to be honest because when the news [of the combat death of his college friend, Dick Pershing] sunk in I had no alternatives but to carry on in the face of trivia that forced me to build a horrible protective screen around myself....

The world I'm a part of out there is so very different from anything you, I, or our close friends can imagine. It's fitted with primitive survival, with destruction of an endless dying seemingly pointless nature and forces one to grow up in a fast — no holds barred fashion. In the small time I have been gone, does it seem strange to say that I feel as though I have seen several years experience go by.... No matter [where] one is — no matter what job — you do not and cannot forget that you are at war and that the enemy is ever present — that anyone could at some time for the same stupid irrational something that stole Persh be gone tomorrow.
You can practically hear the mortar rounds shriek overhead Kerry's foxhole, can't you? Everything around him "is nothing but violence and war" — "endless dying," the enemy "ever present."

Except that this letter was written in Febuary 1968, while Kerry was an ensign aboard the missile cruiser U.S.S. Gridley as it plied the dangerous waters of war-torn Pearl Harbor, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. The Gridley was still almost 6000 miles and many weeks away from the waters offshore of Vietnam....
And we know where the bias, attitude and, frankly, dissembling led Kerry who also saw military service as a necessary step to his future ambitions. He had fashioned a narrative, as is obvious in this letter, concerning a war he had never seen or experienced, and simply used his time in country as a means of claiming others had no standing to challenge his claims.

Kerry was predisposed to do precisely what he did. So was Beauchamp. And that again goes to the importance of discovering and challenging this sort of fraud before it can establish itself as "conventional wisdom" about how our military acts during wartime. I have no idea what, if anything, Scott Beauchamp will become, but at the time Kerry was spinning his narrative, no one thought he'd end up in front of the Senate spouting nonsense and branding an entire generation of soldiers as monsters or eventually in the Senate trying to undermine the effort in another war, did they?
 
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...ouch...
 
Written By: markm
URL: http://
What a baby...

"War is so cruel, so inhuman... We only had steak once last week... I’ve become a monster..."

Kerry wouldn’t survive tough duty.

Hey, with three purple hearts, apparently he almost didn’t.

(Yes, I’m aware of how long it took for him to get those three. That was a joke.)
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Much of the Beauchamp/Kerry/Liberal problem or as some call the Liberal Narrative is that they treat soldiers as something conceptually different than say social service workers or firemen (Yes I know soldiers run risks, just go with me here), as adults who have made a choice of job or vocation and who fulfill a niche in society.

Instead they can only view soldiers in one of two ways, Victim or Villain. Sometimes, as both. Soldier as Victim, the degraded damaged PTSD Vietnam/Iraqi Vet, someone to be pitied or as Villain, Calley and My Lai, England and Abu Ghraib. Sometimes as both, the Villainous Victim, what Beauchamp might have wanted, the nasty fellow, made nasty by the horrors of Bush’s War.

Until the Left can accept that soldier=social worker=fireman=librarian=ditch digger they’ve got problems in dealing. If being a soldier is a choice of temporary employment or lifelong vocation that fulfills a societal need, then suddenly something has to change in the Left and until that mental realignment is made, they are always going to fall back on everything is My Lai or everyone is a PTSD sufferer, because it’s the only way they have of conceptualizing soldiers.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
And he ran for President on an very much fabricated military history. Yes, he did go in harms way, yea for 1/3 of a specified tour, but in danger only because the Swift Boats’ mission had changed once he arrived. Another who fabricated their war record was Iowa’s present Senator Harkin who had a short lived attempt in 1992 to run for the presidency. He stated he was a combat pilot in Vietnam even after Senator Goldwater had exposed his false statements in the 1980’s. Both of these men are still in the Senate. Representative Murtha, a Marine, prejudges Marines of which two now have had charges dropped concerning the Haditha deaths. He was re-elected with a strong challenger available. And what about Senator “Leaky” Leahy and our beloved Senator “DUI” Kennedy. I couldn’t think of any Republicans who remain in office after such antics. I could go on, but what does this say about the electorate in both red and blue states? Character and integrity doesn’t count, especially now? Unfortunately, I can believe that. So, does anyone want to have Mr. Beauchamp as their congressman?
 
Written By: AMR
URL: http://
Krauthammer comments on the Kuwait/Iraq substitution, but the story has moved even beyond that. First, there are some rumors floating around that the burned woman story is very close to a fictional character in a novel by Brad Thor, and there has been no corroboration that she ever existed in Kuwait. On the contrary, the PAO for the base in Iraq says that the story may be an urban legend.

Second, TNR published a statement from an anonymous source at the company that manufactures Bradleys saying that it is possible to use them to run over dogs. Confederate Yankee was able to identify the source and do an interview with him on the record in which he contradicts TNR’s conclusion attributed to him. The source suggested that the TNR fact-checker deliberately posed vague questions that were designed to get the answers they wanted. It is beginning to look like TNR is engaged in a cover-up that is a greater breach of journalistic ethics than the original lack of due diligence.

With respect to Kerry, a lot of the comments I’m reading about his political career attribute it all to his Winter Soldier fame. Don’t forget that he won his original Senate seat by shilling for the Soviet-backed unilateral freeze movement that opposed Reagan’s (ultimately successful) foreign policy initiatives.
 
Written By: Aldo
URL: http://
Taking the broad view of how we end up in places such as we find ourselves with the Beauchamp story, my personal frustration is: “How does it happen that the point of view that I believe in, is on one side, with the [it was a long time coming because of leftist interference] truth [not the “greater truth”, the “universal truth” or other “truths” that are not consistent with the actual truth] and the leftists are still on the other side, licking their wounds and growling [or crickets] instead of recognizing that the truth came out and openly dealing with the result?”

Oh, I could just say that they are sheeple and that they cannot let go of even a small part of their Narrative in the face of inconsistent truth [and perhaps that is the simple (Ockham’s) truth]. I don’t really believe that. Why are they unable to simply state: “OK, your were right and this one came out that way. We should have been more careful. We will try to be more careful next time.” And move on? And take any lesson to be learned, become wiser and win the next one?

Instead, we get... well, what we are getting. I don’t get it. Perhaps I have too much respect for liberals and expect too much.


Possible sarcasm/humor alert
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
Hmmm, not having been there or in the military, I’ve talked to a number of Vietnam veterans who admire Kerry and in private talk about the war in much the same way he does. I’ve also read the opposite in blogs like this one. One Vietnam vet told me that he believed that the reality that what they did as soldiers, the reality of losing friends and part of their life was so much for some people that they couldn’t accept that the war was meaningless. I guess his argument would be a parallel to the argument about a liberal narrative, only he’s claiming that many vets created a "conservative narrative" to avoid accepting what he believed was an unpleasant reality.

Near as I can tell, nobody’s lying, they just remember their experiences and interpret reality in different ways. People take from experiences that which verifies what they already think, and find ways to dismiss those who think differently. Somehow, I suspect that neither "narrative" is completely accurate. Shades of grey.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Near as I can tell, nobody’s lying, they just remember their experiences and interpret reality in different ways. People take from experiences that which verifies what they already think, and find ways to dismiss those who think differently. Somehow, I suspect that neither "narrative" is completely accurate. Shades of grey.


Uh No, Dr. Erb you were either in Cambodia or not...you were either in Iraq or Kuwayt. Sorry when you say it was SEARED into my memory, you’re lying. When you talk about laughing at a wonded contractor in Iraq as proof of war’s de-humanizing effects but instead it happened, IF it happened at all, in Kuwayt PRIOR to the war you’re LYING.
I’ve talked to a number of Vietnam veterans who admire Kerry and in private talk about the war in much the same way he does.
And like Kerry they heard these things, right? Did they actually BEHAVE in a manner reminiscent of Jenghis Khan? If so, did you ask them how they lived with themselves after having broken the UCMJ and The Geneva Conventions and did they ever have the urge to turn themselves in? How about this, if they committed murder remember there’s no stattue of limitations on murder, they could still turn in themselves or their mates. Most likley you’r talking to the cooks, bakers and candle stick makers of the Vietnam ERA, assuming they are veterans at all. Try reading Stolen Valor it’ll give you a whole new perspective on Kerry and his ilk.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Hmmm, not having been there or in the military, I’ve talked to a number of Vietnam veterans who admire Kerry and in private talk about the war in much the same way he does.
My father nearly spits when you mention Kerry, and if a Vietnam Vet spoke about fellow vets like Kerry did - and did it infront of my father - I would end up getting a call needing to come up with bail money for him.

I don’t know who the hell you talk to Erb, but I can well guess. They drink coffee at the same coffee house you do, and when they went to Vietnam it was because the military didn’t accept their college waiver.
One Vietnam vet told me that he believed that the reality that what they did as soldiers, the reality of losing friends and part of their life was so much for some people that they couldn’t accept that the war was meaningless.
Oh yes... those poor, poor broken fools. They just can’t accept the facts...

F*cking fraud.
Near as I can tell, nobody’s lying, they just remember their experiences and interpret reality in different ways. People take from experiences that which verifies what they already think, and find ways to dismiss those who think differently. Somehow, I suspect that neither "narrative" is completely accurate. Shades of grey.
There we go.

There is no truth, there is no fact. It’s all subjective. You can say what did or didn’t happen, even if you were there...

And people wonder why we’re going down the crapper.
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Oh, I could just say that they are sheeple and that they cannot let go of even a small part of their Narrative in the face of inconsistent truth [and perhaps that is the simple (Ockham’s) truth]. I don’t really believe that. Why are they unable to simply state: “OK, your were right and this one came out that way. We should have been more careful. We will try to be more careful next time.” And move on? And take any lesson to be learned, become wiser and win the next one?
Your frustration is the same frustration I had when it took so long for people on the right to admit there wasn’t "slow progress" in Iraq, that things were decaying, and the Bush Administration had read the situation completely wrong. Why not say, "yeah, we were really way off base in our arguments and expectations and those critical of the war were correct, but we’re there now so we have to figure out what’s best to do." It seemed to me like the pro-war side was for a long time in complete denial of reality, even defending Cheney’s last throes argument.

So both sides do it. I’m not sure why. I thought after TNR’s statement of corroboration that those attacking Beauchamps would have to eat crow. I also said I’d accept the military investigation, which I do, and I was wrong in thinking Beauchamps stories could be accurate, and need to be wary of such stories (or really any stories from the war that seem to have a political purpose pro- or con) that aren’t well vetted. Easy to admit.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Near as I can tell, nobody’s lying, they just remember their experiences and interpret reality in different ways.
So there is no ’true’ reality Scott? Do you still believe Beauchamp just ’remembered his experiences differently’?

“OK, your were right and this one came out that way. We should have been more careful. We will try to be more careful next time.” And move on?
Something I just don’t get. I learned early on to admit when I f*** up. It gives me a lot of credibility with people I argue with. If I have a rep for admitting when I’m wrong, and I happen to be dug in deep on an issue, I have the advantage of conviction and for not being a one track zealot.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
I’ve talked to a number of Vietnam veterans who admire Kerry and in private talk about the war in much the same way he does.
And like Kerry they heard these things, right?
Joe, you’re best to ignore such statments from Erb. He has zip to filter that through and so he has no context in which to examine whether they did or didn’t really experience what they say they did just as he has no real way to examine Kerry’s claims in order to validate or invalidate them.

And don’t forget, he felt Beauchamp’s stories were plausible, which should tell you all you need to know about the significance of his "I’ve talked to a number of Vietnam Vets ..." line.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Your frustration is the same frustration I had when it took so long for people on the right to admit there wasn’t "slow progress" in Iraq, that things were decaying, and the Bush Administration had read the situation completely wrong.
Except Rumsfeld’s gone and we have the Surge, i.e. we’ve changed....but not the Left...Quagmire...War is lost...Come home....one side can make an implicit acceptance of error one side can’t even manage that.
So both sides do it.
Really both sides....try again.


I’m not sure why.

Because one side is trying its darnedest to delegitimitize the war?
I thought after TNR’s statement of corroboration that those attacking Beauchamps would have to eat crow. I also said I’d accept the military investigation, which I do, and I was wrong in thinking Beauchamps stories could be accurate, and need to be wary of such stories (or really any stories from the war that seem to have a political purpose pro- or con) that aren’t well vetted.
Really Doctor after Micah Wright, after James Massey, after Jesse MacBeth, after Amorita Hall you bought Beauchamp’s story, you thought "Well, no one could be LYING about this sort of thing could they?" Even after all the other liars were exposed? Basically what you’re saying is that you’re gullible, if it’s a story that says "The US sucks and it’s troops are rats" well then, it must be given legitimacy, because no one ever lies about this sort of thing? OK, well right they do, but still THIS time I’m sure that they aren’t...until OOOPS.
Easy to admit.

Just like it’s easy to quit smoking, I’ve done at least three times-last time took-right Doctor, until the NEXT Baeuchamp/MacBeth comes along and then we have to repeat the cycle for you. 1) It’s true. 2)We don’t know, it COULD be true. 3)We do know. 4)It was a lie, but truthy. 5)It was a lie and why does anyone think that this is a big deal?

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://

There is no truth, there is no fact. It’s all subjective.
Who said there is no truth, Scott. I suggest you read a classic, *Perception and Misperception in International Affairs" by Robert Jervis. The fact is, cognitive psychology has already established that we interpret reality through a cognitive lens based very much on existing beliefs and one prone to bias. This is a scientific fact, verified by numerous experiences. That doesn’t mean there is no truth or that all is subjective; it means only that different subjects will interpret the same reality in different ways. Jump off a cliff and you’ll fall and hurt yourself or be killed. Reality is. But in complex situations your interpretation will vary from someone elses’ based on your beliefs and past experience. The reason I try to learn different perspectives, such as those on this blog is precisely in order to understand what underlies interpretations of situations that are so much different than my own and many other people I know. I try very hard (and need to for my profession, as I note in my blog today — Bias and Academia) to be respectful of people with different perspectives than my own, and understand their way of thinking.

Joe, I won’t debate Kerry’s past with you because I haven’t looked into it. But by saying "no one is lying," I was referring to the reactions by people here and the Vietnam (and Iraq) vets I talk to who have different points of view.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Just like it’s easy to quit smoking, I’ve done at least three times
Hell, I’ve quit 4 times today already...

Had to come back inside and get back to work...
The reason I try to learn different perspectives
Please. You haven’t learned a new perspective since Jane Fonda...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Joe, I won’t debate Kerry’s past with you because I haven’t looked into it. But by saying "no one is lying," I was referring to the reactions by people here and the Vietnam (and Iraq) vets I talk to who have different points of view.

Dude the great NY Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously quipped, "We are each entitled to our won opinons, but not our own facts." And my point is many of the "facts" are lies....I wouldn’t debate Kerry’s past much either, save to say he was no "hero", in fact it would be safe to say he was a lying dupe, in his various post-war appearances. Again, we can disagree about Kerry’s ACTUAL war experiences and whether he is a hero or merely someone who served, but we really can’t disagree that he lied about a large number of things AFTER he came home. And tha’s not just about Kerry, but the larger point of "no one is lying" Yes they are Dr Erb and if you bothered to probe you’d discover that. Their facts, many times, are lies and that makes their conclusions INVALID if not UNTRUE.
Hell, I’ve quit 4 times today already...
The first decade is the hardest, and now going on 12 years, 11 months 3 hours and 11 minutes after I quit I can say I hardly miss it all.



 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Doctor after Micah Wright, after James Massey, after Jesse MacBeth, after Amorita Hall...
Would you please mention someone I’ve heard of! I think the second to last one I remember reading something about on Q&O — someone pretending to be a soldier, right? Anyway, I also know about Abu Ghraib and Mai Lai.

And both sides do it. There are those of us who think this war was a terrible mistake and we need to find a way to end it without leaving Iraq in dire straights. There are others who think this war was worth while, and in fact the American people should be supporting it. Both sides often twist reality in their statements (should stories that are full of good news from the front and soldiers being heroic not be given scrutiny either?), more often, both sides interpret the same information differently. For instance this piece takes evidence of success in the ’surge’ and comes to a very different interpretation and conclusion. I try to read all sides fairly yet cynically.

Also, it’s interesting how McQ wants to suggest I’m lying about talking to Vietnam vets because, well Beauchamp lied and so the anti-war "narrative" can be dismissed. That’s just as irrational in the other direction.

Your point about the left and the surge is fair. I’ve been impressed with the change of strategy and the alliance building with Sunnis, it is more effective than I thought it would be. However, I’ve mentioned the limits of the surge several times (my blog entry for August 7 goes into that). Stories like this point to the problem with the Shi’ites, Iran and reconciliation. McQ has addressed this concern in a couple of his posts, but many commentators want to dismiss concerns saying "political reconciliation will take place after the surge," something contrary to what even the President wants. So there also is seem denial on the right about the limits of what the surge is meant to accomplish.

 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
The first decade is the hardest, and now going on 12 years, 11 months 3 hours and 11 minutes after I quit I can say I hardly miss it all.
1974
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
The first decade is the hardest, and now going on 12 years, 11 months 3 hours and 11 minutes after I quit I can say I hardly miss it all
Not that you’re keeping track or anything...

Eh, I figure I’ll quit in bootcamp.

Unless they started letting you smoke in Basic for the Army again... I know the Navy put an end to that a while ago.

Damned health nazis...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Doctor after Micah Wright, after James Massey, after Jesse MacBeth, after Amorita Hall...
Would you please mention someone I’ve heard of! I think the second to last one I remember reading something about on Q&O
Well Doc that might part of the problem...I have no PhD and I don’t teach but i do know that each of these folks is an Iraqi or Panama Vet who opposes the current war, do to their experiences...except Wright was NEVER a Ranger or in Panama, MacBeth was never a Ranger and in Iraq, Hall was NEVER in Iraq, much less blown up and/or raped. At least Massey was indeed a Sgt. in the USMC and did serve. They serve as reminders that Beauchamp was not the first poseur to try this approach the path for which was so gloriously balzed by the great poseur J F Kerry. You buy into or at least accept Beauchamp because you don’t know or don’t want to know that he is not the first little wannabe to try this.

Now to be fair, the absolute first and best at this was Robert Graves and his Goodbye to All That. The classic work of war and its disillusioning effects. Turns out that much of it is fiction, at least according to Fussell in The Great War and Modern Memory but it serves as THE example of the literary memoir that Beauchamp strove for. Grves is lucky he’s dead and the work is now so old most people woudn’t reckon it worth the "fisking."
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
"The first decade is the hardest,...I can say I hardly miss it all."

You have about a year on me. Does that mean you no longer linger downwind of smokers for a couple of breaths or get irritated by the waste of a perfectly good cigarette when you see an almost whole one stubbed out in an ashtray?
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
The first decade is the hardest, and now going on 12 years, 11 months 3 hours and 11 minutes after I quit I can say I hardly miss it all
Not that you’re keeping track or anything...
No not at all, I just happen to remember the day and time and place...all purely coincidental
Eh, I figure I’ll quit in bootcamp.

Unless they started letting you smoke in Basic for the Army again... I know the Navy put an end to that a while ago.
You shouldn’t be allowed to smoke in the miltiary it’s dangerous to your health, I mean the smoking, not the military...You know I bet that’s what happened tot he womon Beauchamp insulted, she was SMOKING and it melted her face, and he thought it was an IED.
Does that mean you no longer linger downwind of smokers for a couple of breaths or get irritated by the waste of a perfectly good cigarette when you see an almost whole one stubbed out in an ashtray?
I never really liked the smell of them, even when I smoked...I have gotten to the point when I see smokers and walk down wind I think, "Man that stinks, how did I EVER do that?" I miss the nicotine, but not the method of ingestion.

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
You shouldn’t be allowed to smoke in the miltiary it’s dangerous to your health
So’s getting shot at... :)
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
You shouldn’t be allowed to smoke in the miltiary it’s dangerous to your health
So’s getting shot at... :)
Pah-Shaw getting shot at is INVIGORATING...keeps the adrenal glands in top shape. And remember you can always join the Air Force, it’s LIKE being in the Armed Forces. Or as my friends liked to say, The US Air Force, same unifrom as the Postal Service, but the Postal Service had killed more people prior ro 1991."
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
" a number of Vietnam veterans who admire Kerry and in private talk about the war in much the same way he does"

I am always rather amazed that some alledged veterans claim to be outraged and shamed by the alledged barbarities they committed or witnessed yet never seem to tire of sharing them. Particulary after 30 years or so. Somehow I have never encountered any of these folks. How fortunate. I guess I don’t associate with the right people.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
And remember you can always join the Air Force, it’s LIKE being in the Armed Forces.
Oh SNAP!
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Would you please mention someone I’ve heard of! I think the second to last one I remember reading something about on Q&O — someone pretending to be a soldier, right? Anyway, I also know about Abu Ghraib and Mai Lai.
What? Do you pay attention to anything on this site? Or use the search function?

Read some of the commentary on Jesse and tell me if you don’t feel like you wrote it...
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
"Would you please mention someone I’ve heard of!"
Have you heard of the "liberal bubble"?

What’s her name saying fatuously after a Republican won a Presidential election: "How could he have won? I don’t know anyone who voted for him!"

 
Written By: notherbob2
URL: http://
I’m still not convinced that glasnost and Erb aren’t the same person...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Scott no need to forward that comment to Dale, truly he wasn’t REALLY in the US Air Force...he was with the ALTERNATE Air Force, the one that got cold and dirty guarding the wire, I’m not sure if the pilots every really knew that those people existed or not.
I am always rather amazed that some alledged veterans claim to be outraged and shamed by the alledged barbarities they committed or witnessed yet never seem to tire of sharing them.
My Dad called them "Professional Veterans." (My father "defeated" the Japanese in the Pacific Theatre so I believe he was allowed to discuss veterans w/o the danger of being called a Chickenhawk, mind you he used the quotes around "defeated himself....being a warrant officer in a supply unit) WWII Pro-vets had a different set of stories to tell, Vietnam Pro-Vets are more limited to the PTSD Victim Narrative. Either way, the stories do get a bit old and the sense of entitlement that Pro-Vet’s try to curry.

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Joe, I can’t agree with you about Kerry’s record. I’ve been reading up the last thirty minutes or so — mostly on line sources like Wikipedia, which usually is pretty good on such issues — and there is a lot of controversy but no definitive evidence. On Cambodia, the evidence appears likely that he could well have been in Cambodian waters, he was patroling that area. In fact, most of what you claim parrots the harshest critics of Kerry and ignores all of the counter evidence and responses.

That is precisely what my point was! People choose that which supports the view they hold, and ignore or discredit opposing views. Kerry supporters will choose to look at the evidence that supports his service (and he does appear to have acted heroically on several occasions) and note the problems in the charges made by the critics. If I took your word, I’d have assumed that Kerry had been proven to be simply lying like Beauchamps, when instead a read of both sides shows something very different — and in fact evidence seems to lean towards Kerry’s account.

So your attack on Kerry is an example of someone picking and choosing what evidence to consider valid, and discarding the rest.

 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
OMG Erb, Wikipedia for John Kerry?!?!! I’d read a Wiki article on John Churchill, Duke of Marlboro, but never John Kerry! Procedurally you’re staemtn is suspect, OK, Wiki is not a good source for things controversial/political. I don’t respect or agree with John Kerry, but I’d never use wiki as the basis for my discussion.

Next, testimonial evidence and other evidence pretty much makes the whole Christmas in Cambodia story a non-starter. No one else seems to remember it, his verison of the story has problems-"Nixon was President", Cambodians celebrating, uh Cambodians aren’t Christians 25 December is just a day to them or do you celebrate Lunar New Year (Tet) Sen. Kerry-and the fact thta many ahve discussed the river in question was blocked by obstacles.

So Dr. Erb No Christmas in Cambodia, No CIA agent, No "Lucky Hat."

Yes he was wounded three times. Yes he killed an NVA/VC dude, yes there was a mine explosion on the river, yes to many other things, but NO to that one...

And to his post-war exploits he simply repeated the lies and slanders of the Ramparts Left. Winter Soldier was a farce and so was his Senate testimony.

War-time J F Kerry, an OK officer, gamed a gameable system, got out alive, I have no kick with that J F Kerry

Post-War J F Kerry: liar, dupe, and Communist agent of influence, bloviator and blow-hard, professional veteran and spinner of tall tales, did he throw his medals over the WH wall, or not, or whose medals were they and were those his medals on his office wall later, and why the silly "Seared into my memory speech"?

You see many "facts" of J F Kerry aren’t facts at all, they are lies and fabrications....once you get to the facts, he is OK prior to 1970 and pretty much a wastrel AFTER 1970.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Has everybody already forgotten about James Frey?
 
Written By: Jim Treacher
URL: http://dailygut.com
Wiki?

A college professor claiming Wikipedia to be a pretty good source of information?

It’s official. He’s without a rudder...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
I am reassured that Professor Erb’s obvious trolling is getting no takers. Well, perhaps some takers.
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
& I no longer believe it’s trolling.......I mean if it is, the man is great, the best my hat’s off to him/her.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
If it’s not trolling, what is it?

Mental retardation?

Delusions of adequacy?
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Joe, avoid a logical error.

Five people come to the liquor store to buy alcohol. They each claim to be 21. Upon checking ID, they are found to be underage. A sixth person comes in and claims to be 21. The store owner says "I don’t believe you" and shoos him away.

IOW, just because some people lie and make up stories doesn’t mean that every story is a lie. I am not surprised that a number of people have tried that kind of thing, especially given the emotion of the debate. But that doesn’t mean you dismiss everything anyone says out of hand.

Also, believe it or not, Wikipedia is respected by a lot of people in academia, not as a source for research but a place to go for links and basic information. Some classes even have as an assignment to prepare articles for Wikipedia (or specialized versions geared to their discipline). Controverisal issues like Kerry’s record are watched by all sides like a hawk, so there is considerable effort to be as focused on facts as possible. And given the descripinacy between what you say and what’s there — and cited there — I simply can’t accept your take on Kerry as being credible. However, there are numerous questions raised, so I also consider it credible that Kerry exaggerated and maybe even fabricated a scene or two (actually most people do that in life, to the point where they start believing their fabrications — that’s another interesting bit of psychology). But the bottom line is I don’t and can’t know, and really at this point don’t care either way.

The larger point: this conversation (and comments by others) is following what I noted about diverse perspectives: when met with another point of view, often one side, to protect their bias, doesn’t engage the other and just ridicules and reacts with anger. I’ve done that myself too many times.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Joe, I can’t agree with you about Kerry’s record. I’ve been reading up the last thirty minutes or so — mostly on line sources like Wikipedia, which usually is pretty good on such issues — and there is a lot of controversy but no definitive evidence. — Who else? Whoever in the world else?
To skip over what I’m sure are many good comments constituting quite a good drubbing, I just have to ask: Is it possible that he ever has said or ever will say anything more appallingly stupid? Honestly, I can’t even bring myself to laugh. I think I may be aghast.

Oh, and six years, two weeks, three days, 23 hours, 22 minutes and 41 seconds. You can actually download a little meter that goes tic-ticking away for as long as you care to run it. I fished mine up to desktop for a peek when I thought about my milestone last month. It also keeps track of how many I haven’t smoked — an embarrassment of tens of thousands — and the incredible amount of money I have saved and somehow mislaid somewhere.
 
Written By: Linda Morgan
URL: http://
So here we are... like I said above, we go thru the cycle of it’s true or not or even if it’s not true we all do it, to it’s not important....Well Done Dr.

He only ran for POTUS! he only made his service a CENTRAL THEME OF HIS CAMPAIGN...what you’re really saying is I don’t want to know and any way it’s not important because I might be wrong and let’s move onto the NEXT topic I can be right or wrong about until it doesn’t matter because we need to move onto the next topic.

Erb things just vanish into squishiness with you, once you get pinned down with "facts"...and then it’s onto the next subject.

Bottom-line: Beauchamp lied and so did John F Kerry, neither about EVERYTHING just about the things they said were important and made them celebrities. And that’s not really disputable Dr., as much as you’d like for it to be it isn’t. Little that Beauchamp wrote about occured and little Kerry testified about occured either. They lied. It’s not very post-modern. It doesn’t lend support to the Progressive Cause and that makes it suspect and hard to swallow for you Dr. but they lied.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Bottom line: I haven’t found any evidence that provides any proof for your claims on Kerry. I’ve seen accusations and allegations. So, thinking with a rational, scientific perspective, your claim is cannot be accepted as true.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
From the Wiki:

"Defenders of John Kerry’s service record, including virtually all of his former crewmates, have stated that SBVT’s accusations are false."

They go through and give both sides, here’s the section on Cambodia:
"One of Kerry’s crewmen, SBVT member Steven Gardner [55], asserted that it was physically impossible to cross the Cambodian border, as it was blocked and patrolled by PBRs (a type of patrol boat) [56]; however, Kerry’s boat was evidently patrolling with PBRs during the mission in question [57]. Some crewmembers have, moreover, stated that they may at some point have entered Cambodia without knowing it. James Wasser, who was on PCF-44 on that December mission, while saying that he believed they were "very, very close" to Cambodia, did not recall actually crossing over; he also stated that it was very hard to tell their exact position in the border area. Kerry’s own journal entry on this, written the night of the mission, does not specifically say they entered Cambodia. However, it does state that PCF-44 was somewhere "toward Cambodia" to provide cover for two smaller patrol boats, and in sarcasm, that he considered messaging Christmas greetings to his commanders "from the most inland Market Time unit" and that a court martial for the incident "would make sense" [58]. In addition, George Elliott noted in Kerry’s fitness report that he had been in an ambush during the 24 hour Christmas truce, which began on Christmas Eve [59].

Michael Meehan, a spokesman for the Kerry campaign, responded to SBVT’s charges with a statement that Kerry was referring to a period when Nixon had been president-elect and before he was inaugurated. Meehan went on to state that Kerry had been "deep in enemy waters" between Vietnam and Cambodia and that his boat came under fire at the Cambodian border. Meehan also said that Kerry did covertly cross over into Cambodia to drop off special operations forces on a later occasion, but that there was no paperwork for such missions and he could not supply dates. [60]

Based on examination of Kerry’s journals and logbook, historian Douglas Brinkley placed the covert missions soon after Christmas. In an interview with the London Daily Telegraph, Brinkley stated that Kerry had gone into Cambodian waters three or four times in January and February 1969 on clandestine missions, dropping off U.S. Seals, Green Berets, and CIA operatives. Brinkley added:

He was a ferry master, a drop-off guy, but it was dangerous as hell. Kerry carries a hat he was given by one CIA operative. In a part of his journals which I didn’t use he writes about discussions with CIA guys he was dropping off. [61] [62]

In the book, O’Neill argued that a Swift boat commander would have been "seriously disciplined or court-martialed" for crossing the Cambodian border. Critics point out the inconsistency between this description and O’Neill’s own claims documented in a conversation with President Nixon in 1971"
There’s a lot more, giving both sides of the controversy. The evidence seems weighted towards Senator Kerry’s claims and against the Swift Boaters, who appear to have been motivated by politics to try to smear a decorated veteran.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Professor Erb obviously believes that he, in his overweening arrogance, can push just the right buttons to get the "Wingers" going. He is so obvious because this opportunity came upon him suddenly and he has not had the time to be his usual subtle self.
"...who appear to have been motivated by politics to try to smear a decorated veteran."
Really, Professor, where is your academically refined technique? Just throwing out red meat is beneath you.


 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
Boris Erb, who has had very complimentary things to say about Jane Fonda’s behavior in North Vietnam, by the way, writes:
The evidence seems weighted towards Senator Kerry’s claims and against the Swift Boaters, who appear to have been motivated by politics to try to smear a decorated veteran.
Ah, Boris, the "Swift Boaters" were Kerry’s fellow Swift Boat commanders and the Swift Boat chain of command. Most of those fellow SB commanders who spoke out about Kerry’s behavior served at the same time with him. That is, they went out on missions with him, their boats fighting alongside his, and they lived and ate their meals with him. They were his fellow officers. In other words, most of these men knew John Kerry, and knew him very well, or at least as well as you could know someone who leaves his tour of duty after only four months.

And these men, who I saw on C-SPAN long before they gained notoriety, were regular, decent veterans of the kind who don’t go around accusing fellow members of the armed forces of war crimes, the way Kerry did, after his four months in Vietnam, based on the fabricated reports of the "Winter Soldiers" project.

The Swift Boat commanders did not agree on every detail in their assessment of Kerry, but there was enough agreement, based on eye-witness and/or contemporaneous reports, to paint Kerry as a vain, self-aggrandizing, somewhat unhinged officer, who took a few nicks and turned them into the requisite three purple hearts to get him out of there, and several of his mates said they were happy to see him go. But surely not as happy as they were to see him defeated in his attempt to become President of the United States, a prospect that appalled them beyond any partisan political sentiments they might have had.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
& writes, commenting on a Boris Erb comment:
"...who appear to have been motivated by politics to try to smear a decorated veteran."

Really, Professor, where is your academically refined technique? Just throwing out red meat is beneath you.
Considering that the Wiki excerpt that Boris quotes offers defenses of Kerry by one of his campaign aides and his court biographer, he’s rather quick to judge as political smear artists Kerry’s fellow officers, i.e., the men who were actually in Vietnam with Kerry or in the unit before and after Kerry.

I guess that’s what you might call KGB scholarship.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
On Cambodia, the evidence appears likely that he could well have been in Cambodian waters, he was patroling that area. In fact, most of what you claim parrots the harshest critics of Kerry and ignores all of the counter evidence and responses.
Erb. I’d like to take a moment to tell you a few things about Kerry’s story, which, as he states it, was "Seared into my memory."

His story first came about in a letter to the editor of the Boston Globe in 1979. The contents of the letter was repeated virtually in its entiretly in a 20 minute speech he gave on the floor of the Senate in 1986 trying to persuade member to vote against aid to the contras and it was in that speech he uttered the words "I have that memory which is seared - seared - in me." The story he recalled was about taking a special forces unit into Cambodia and listening to President Nixon on Christmas day 1968 proclaiming our troops were nowhere near Cambodia.

There are several problems with his statements about this Cambodian incursion:

* The river he mentions he was on, Rach Giang Thanh River, does not go into Cambodia - not now, not ever. Could it be a conspiracy of cartographers? (I’ve always wanted to say that!)

* Nixon was not president on Christmas day 1968 - his inauguration would not take place for some weeks. Presidential Hostorians note Nixon did not give any speech on Christmas day of 1968 - he was with his family. Remember, his memory was SEARED!

* Two of the sailors he served with on the Swift Boasts - and these were the ones who supported him during the ’04 campaign - say they never were in Cambodia at any time.

* In an era where even Special forces units carefully recorded their activities, there is no record of such an incursion. Nor is there a record of any Special Forces Units ever utilizing Swift Boats for any river-type incursions - they had their own resources.

* In the book "Tour of Duty" written by Douglas Brinkley, there is no mention of any activity in Cambodia during the period mentioned even though there is more than 100 pages devoted to detailing his evey movement and actitity during the very same period. Brinkley’s claims that Kerry was in Cambodia came after the book’s publication and he nor Kerry have ever produced any such "Journal" supposedly written by Kerry.

Now, the Swift Boaters took these details, in much the same way that others have addressed inconsistencies with Beauchamps soties, and used them to question Kerry’s facts. So far Kerry has done a lot of hand waving and protesting but he has yet to produce one person or one record from the war to substantiate his story.

I do not adress any of Kerry’s combat experiences. Not once have I ever downplayed or denigrated his service. My main problem with Kerry has always been his post-war activities, which I beleve borders on Treason - but that is another topic. The only wartime experience I question of Kerry’s is this one and I’m Sorry, but your Wikipedia sources don’t amount to a hill of beans.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
I do not address any of Kerry’s combat experiences.
I will. Here I did some research into the supposed mine incident where he claims his boat was under fire for "thousands of yards". As you’ll see, it was a load of crap when you finally decipher the actual spot report (something the NYT apparently wasn’t able to do).

What happened is one boat, PCF 3 (not Kerry’s boat which was the 94 boat) hit a mine. The mine was not covered by fire, meaning there were no bad guys around to fire at the boats in ambush after the mine detonated. The other PCFs were able to stay on station around the damaged boat for almost an hour removing injured crewmen and getting the boat ready to tow. You don’t do that in a situation where you’re under fire for thousands of yards. But that’s what Kerry reported (as well as reporting his boat hit a mine).

The SF guy was totally confused thinking that all sorts of fire had broken loose while he was bobbing in the drink (and spending most of his time under water). But the firing he was hearing was apparently friendly suppressive fire which was SOP for an ambush situation. Once they determined they weren’t receiving any incoming, they ceased firing. And on and on and on. It was for that action, which didn’t at all involve him, that Kerry got the Bronze Star. He got it for "rescuing" the SF guy. Apparently, and this is my theory, he convince the SF guy that they’d been under intense fire when Kerry retrieved him. The SF guy (Rasmussen, I believe) put him in for the award.

Nothing supports Kerry’s version.

And I researched a heck of a lot more than just that. Like his Cambodia nonsense. You hit all the salient nails on the head. One other point. When this particular mission was supposed to have taken place, Kerry was the junior Swift Boat commander. Again, a cultural thing, but if you’re a commander, you do not send your most junior commander on a clandestine mission ... ever. He simply wouldn’t have the necessary experience. And, as you mention, they had SEALS teams 1 and 2 there who had a boat squadron of their own.

SEAL Teams 1 and 2

Strike Assault Boat Squadron - 20 (STABRON-20)

Underwater Demolition Team - 12 (UDT-12)
Underwater Demolition Team - 13 (UDT-13)
Underwater Demolition Team - 21 (UDT-21)
Underwater Demolition Team - 27 (UDT-27)
Now, you tell me, who do you want making a ’clandestine’ drop by boat? A SEAL boat or a clunky, loud twin diesel aluminum boat captained by the junior Swift Boat skipper who had no inner river experience?

Here I talk about his tactics in the incident for which he was awarded the Silver Star.


And his first PH? Here’s how that went down. And then there is this.


About the "they weren’t on the same boat" nonsense.

Etc., etc., etc. The point is there is plenty of facts and evidence out there for someone honestly pursuing it. Quick checks of Wikipedia do not qualify.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Again, the incidents are pretty well described in the Wiki on this. Due to the vetting process, I think that’s the most unbiased source. I find it far more persuasive and better documented than McQ’s claims. It shows there is controversy, but if things were clearly wrong, that could be verified. I posted a copy of the Wiki on Cambodia, which shows clearly the possibility is there he was in Cambodia. I almost cut and pasted parts that deal with McQ’s claims, but I think you get the picture — those who are out to get Kerry have a biased read, and the unbiased source notes different accounts (and a lot of support for Kerry’s position, especially from those who were there). So at this point, any objective reader would have to conclude that while there are questions about Kerry’s claims, most likely it’s minor details that he got wrong and the major events were as he remembered them. Personally the kinds of smears against him disgusted me to the point I almost voted for him out of a sense of justice.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Regarding the evidence about Kerry in Cambodia:
Kerry himself has publically admitted, on Meet The Press, to Tim Russert, on the last Sunday of Jan 2005, that he was not in Cambodia for Christmas of ’68 (despite it being ’seared into my memory’).
He said it was at some later time, and that the mission involved delivering weapons to the Khmer Rouge (open mouth insert foot). Unfortunately Russert simply accepted the statement, and did not ask Kerry why he would be running guns to the Communists.
Then again, much like the ’seared into my memory’ event, Kerry was simply making things up again and has no idea what he is talking about.


 
Written By: anonymous
URL: http://
I believe that we are moving out of "It COULD be true" and into "No one cares about this; 1% of the population even knows about it".

How many times does Professor Erb have to dance this fandango before he runs out of gulls to egg him on?

Next there will be a debate about whether or not OJ is guilty. Professor Erb, I believe, will hold that he has been found innocent in a court of law and therefore he didn’t do that crime. Wiki no doubt will confirm this.
 
Written By: notherbob2
URL: http://
Notherbob, you miss my point: I’m not arguing so much about Kerry, but about the tendency of people who, when confronted with a position they dislike, will usually not confront and deal with the position rationally. Instead they will get angry, attack the person holding the position they dislike, and find ways to avoid real engagement. You see that on the right and the left — that’s why I don’t like liberal blogs like the Daily Kos which I’ve read about five times total. I don’t believe in either the conservative or the liberal narrative because that’s just an interpretation of reality that becomes internally consistent, but avoids hard questions that could lead to understandings and solutions that don’t fit clearly within any ideology. When you see emotion, personal attacks, and the like, that is a sign of insecurity. I think Kerry’s challenge, coming from someone with his record, was a real challenge to the view of the military some have. Rather than recognize some validity to Kerry’s challenge (even if ultimately disagreeing with it), it is EASIER to simply attack, smear, and try to use argumentum ad hominem to discredit the person. That is perhaps the lowest level of politics, yet, unfortunately, too often the norm, left and right.

The reason I’ve shifted many of my positions from the 90s to ones far more skeptical of government is because I’ve listened to other perspectives and am self-critical as well as other-critical. I think people do themselves a disservice when they run from tough arguments and challening perspectives with argument by smear. (I also find it necessary in my line of work, as I note in my blog today).
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
the tendency of people who, when confronted with a position they dislike, will usually not confront and deal with the position rationally.
Erb, come on and get real here. I have not attacked "the person" in this situation. Instead, I have produced questions and discrepancies in John Kerry’s "Cambodian Fantasy" that your "Wiki" sources cannot answer.

In all of these discrepancies the most glaring is his claiming to be on the Rach Giang Thanh River when he "journeyed" into Cambodia. There can be no memory lapse here. It was a specific claim - remember "Seared" into his memory - he doesn’t say he was on the Mekong or the Mississippiany or old river. And this is repeated in the Boston Globe story and in his Senate speech. Take a moment and look at a map. The Rach Giang Thanh River does not come within 10 miles of the Cambodian border at any point along its entire length. And he could not have even seen Cambodia from the river because there is a series of parallel ridges between the river and Cambodia.
I think Kerry’s challenge, coming from someone with his record, was a real challenge to the view of the military some have. Rather than recognize some validity to Kerry’s challenge (even if ultimately disagreeing with it), it is EASIER to simply attack, smear, and try to use argumentum ad hominem to discredit the person.
And where in my discussion do you see "ad hominem" attacks on the person? We have had these kinds of discussions before, Erb. I would think you would know better of the way I approach a subject. I do not mind so much you defending the man but defending this situation is so screwy as to beg disbelief!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
And where in my discussion do you see "ad hominem" attacks on the person? We have had these kinds of discussions before, Erb. I would think you would know better of the way I approach a subject. I do not mind so much you defending the man but defending this situation is so screwy as to beg disbelief!
By now you must be able to identify the formulaic responses he gives when backed into a corner with no way out. He’s particularly enamored of the phantom "ad hominem" attack as a diversionary tactic. And you’ve seen the "this is unimportant" variation. There’s also the "your opinion is a minority opinion" and other little jewels he likes to trot out at various times.

When you get to this point with him, you’ve won the debate. He has nothing and is reduced to extremely crude and obvious but desperate attempts to change the subject and make it about you and your alleged conduct, etc.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
When you get to this point with him, you’ve won the debate.
LOL! There was no debate. You are afraid of real debate and discussion. You just snip and take a section and declare yourself the victor. If you had the balls to actually discuss an issue then your declarations might mean something.

SShiell: The Wiki accounts state very clearly the possibility that he could have been in Cambodian waters. How do you account for the discrepency. Look, I didn’t even vote for Kerry, it’s not like I’m defending him. But I think the attempts to smear him and attack him personally are weak.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Boris Erb, the slithering eel, writes:
LOL! There was no debate. You are afraid of real debate and discussion. You just snip and take a section and declare yourself the victor. If you had the balls to actually discuss an issue then your declarations might mean something.
Let’s see, McQ presents a detailed analysis of Kerry’s claims about his service in Vietnam. Boris Erb, the laziest bum on the face of the Earth, glibly responds by talking about the Wikipedia entry on Kerry as if it could possibly cover the level of detail involved, and here says to McQ "You are afraid of real debate and discussion," AND "If you had the balls to actually discuss an issue..."

I’m tempted to think I’m dreaming when I read something like that. It sounds too perverse for reality—too distinct from reality to be something that someone would really say.

How would one even begin to respond to something like that?
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
For the record...

It is not slander, nor is it an ad hominem attack when the person is an actual, demonstrated liar.

Take note Erb.

You intellectual Fraud.

I want to witness one of your classes just for the joy of shooting down your BS live.
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
"And given the descripinacy between what you say and what’s there — and cited there — I simply can’t accept your take on Kerry as being credible"

Perhaps the discrepancy exists because he, like many others including myself, has gone to the trouble of actually going to those links listed in Wikipedia and other sources. Not to mention the actual experience many of us have had which informs our opinions on this subject as it did on the Beauchamp matter.

"I haven’t found any evidence that provides any proof for your claims on Kerry."

What a surprise! I know you looked ever so diligently.

"who appear to have been motivated by politics to try to smear a decorated veteran."

Of course you have managed to find evidence to support this rather despicable ad hominem attack on decorated veterans, right?


"Due to the vetting process, I think that’s the most unbiased source."

You rely on a single second or third hand source? I am impressed with your intellectual rigor.

"it is EASIER to simply attack, smear, and try to use argumentum ad hominem to discredit the person."

Sort of like you just did to over 200 of Kerry’s "Brothers in Arms".


This is not the first, or even the second, time this subject has been discussed here. Much information and many links have been provided, yet all it can muster to support its argument is its interpretation of one Wiki article and the usual ad hominem attacks on those who disagree.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Does the Wikipedia article include Kerry’s statement (Meet the Press, Jan. 2005) that the event so "seared" into his memory (Cambodia, Christmas 1968) was in fact wrong?
 
Written By: anonymous
URL: http://
Well, you see, and I know that out there in the real world it is a difficult concept to grab onto, but in the Liberal Narrative, Kerry could have been in Cambodian waters on that occasion.
Therefore, no amount of preposterous rightwingnoisemachine propaganda stating that he wasn’t (including admissions from the party involved) can affect the established LN wisdom at all.
Got it?
 
Written By: notherbob2
URL: http://
The Wiki accounts state very clearly the possibility that he could have been in Cambodian waters. How do you account for the discrepency.
Maybe because whoever "vetted" the Wiki article can’t frigging read a map? Maybe because whoever "vetted" the Wiki article can’t read Kerry’s 2005 statment to Meet the Press that his account was wrong? Maybe because whoever "vetted" the Wiki article has a liberal bias?

The argument is crap. To say something "could" have happened is crap. You "could" have been on the grassy knoll! You "could" have been the real 20th World Trade Center Terrorist! Defend yourself. It is like trying to prove something did not happen. You can’t do it. Always "could’ interferes with the logic of the matter. That is why people keep listening to the holocaust deniers, the 9/11 truthers, the Kennedy Assassination conspiracy theorists, and assorted other bullsh*t artists. People keep giving creedence to the "could" in those arguments.

Look back at the evidence I and others have presented to you. That evidence is verifiable. The map, the lack of any corroboration, his own Meet the Press statement. Now look at Kerry’s Cambodian Incursion story and tell me logically, without using the word "could", why I should agree with you.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
SShiell, the Wiki article has documented sources making clear it was possible he could have strayed into Cambodia. You just say look at a map and give the name of one river. Sorry, but I have to go with the cites.

Scott J., your insults are silly and over the top. You also are quick to make charges that you can’t back up. I think you less emotion and more reason.

For those who don’t know, ad hominem attacks are those directed at the person — saying you can’t believe a claim because of something about the person — rather than the argument. I’ve found people who can’t support their arguments or fear that another person is better at debate tend to fall into name calling. It’s a way of avoiding honesty in dealing with someone, and usually causes people to behave unethically.

Note too that I’ve many times admitted error. I caught McQ in a really bad error last weak — he mocked me for using term argument from authority, correcting me to say it should be appeal to authority, and then said that the fallacy is only if you appeal to an incompetent authority. I provided a cite that shows that both labels (argument and appeal) are legit, and it is not an incompetent authority, but any authority. As usual when he’s caught being wrong he refuses to admit it, and becomes a bit more insulting. That says something.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Going with the wikipedia cites over Kerry admitting on Meet The Press (last Sunday of Jan 05) that he was not in Cambodia on Christmas of 1968?
 
Written By: anonymous
URL: http://
"As usual when he’s caught being wrong he refuses to admit it, and becomes a bit more insulting."
Ho hum, irony meter, yadda yadda.
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
SShiell, the Wiki article has documented sources making clear it was possible he could have strayed into Cambodia. You just say look at a map and give the name of one river.
Erb, I do not care what the Wiki citation says. All of the words and such from the Wiki citation and other citations are Kerry and his supporters backpedalling after the fact, trying to cover for the inadequacies of his "SEARED" memory.

You can go to Wiki and you "could" see that Lincoln’s Gettysburgh address begins with a reference to "87 years", but those would not have been Lincoln’s words. I refer to Kerry’s own story. A simple Google search will show you both versions - the 1979 Boston Globe letter to the editor and his 1986 Senate speech. In both versions he refers to only one river, the Rach Giang Thanh River - there is no misrepresentation here - these are his own words. I could care less if he ventured into Cambodia at some other point, on some other river, on some other date - and I doubt he ever did but the point is he did not say that.
Note too that I’ve many times admitted error.
Only after being beaten around the head and shoulders for days on end before you would finally admit you may have erred. Examples? Murtha and "MDS" just this last week, the popularity of the Iraq war versus Viet Nam, and I can go on a few more times but it is late and I am tired of this discussion.

Erb, you have stuck your neck out once again and I and others have handed it back to you on a platter. Admit it and move on.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
" Sorry, but I have to go with the cites."

Which you have, of course, checked yourself, being a scientist and all.

"For those who don’t know,..."

I doubt that anyone here doesn’t know, since you seem to use that term in every thread. Usually more than once, since so many seem to disagree with you. Why do you think that only you seem to collect so many such emotional and illogical (and of course erroneous) attacks, hmmmm?
*Cue paranoid fantasy*


" I’ve found people who can’t support their arguments or fear that another person is better at debate tend to fall into name calling"

Actually, as I have pointed out before, it is possible to do both. At least for someone with an IQ above the melting point of water ice.

 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
I caught McQ in a really bad error last weak
No, you didn’t. And, speaking of errors...it’s spelled "week"
correcting me to say it should be appeal to authority
That’s what it is actually called. Your own link said so.
and then said that the fallacy is only if you appeal to an incompetent authority
*ERB LOGIC ALERT*
That’s NOT what he said.

Furthermore, his argument was NOT based on an appeal to authority. Establishing a person’s credentials before giving explanations and evidence is not the basis for a logical fallacy.

Of course, this was pointed out in the original thread.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
"and then said that the fallacy is only if you appeal to an incompetent authority"

JWG;
You will now recognize, I am sure, the obvious fallacy of appealing to its authority as a Professor of Poly Sci. or speeker of Inglish.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://

 
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