L. Neil Smith's
Number 284, August 15, 2004

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Don't Believe The Spinmeisters
by Todd Andrew Barnett

Exclusive to TLE

It is no secret to pundits of the status quo—those from all walks of life including libertarians, constitutionalists, limited-government conservatives (a.k.a. Old Right conservatives), free marketers, and other like-minded opponents of the state—that the spinmeisters of any administration have the ability to take the truth they have in their possession and distort it, while, at the same time, engaging in a national campaign to snow the American people into believing that what they say and do mean something. This is nothing new, as this sort of thing has been occurring from time immemorial. But should we really be surprised? Simply put, these rounds of tactics—commonly known as spinmeistering—are administered all the time.

Let's take Senator John Kerry, the Democratic presidential nominee whose "anti-war" rhetoric makes him the biggest butt of the joke of all time. Giving his speech before the delegates at the Democratic National Convention at the Boston FleetCenter on July 29, 2004, Kerry stated:

"As president, I will ask the hard questions and demand hard evidence. I will immediately reform the intelligence system, so policy is guided by facts and facts are never distorted by politics.

"And as president, I will bring back this nation's time-honored tradition: The United States of America never goes to war because we want to; we only go to war because we have to. That is the standard of our nation."

That all soundsreally nice, except that, of course, he doesn't mean it. Think about it: are we really supposed to take Kerry at his word when he promises, if elected to the presidency, to "ask" questions about and "demand" hard evidence of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) that Hussein supposedly had just shortly prior to the war in Iraq? What questions does he promise to "ask"? For all intents and purposes he doesn't explain exactly how he plans to do this, and he leaves viewers guessing as to what he might do as opposed to what he promises to do and how he plans to carry it out.

Notice that the senator does not even propose dismantling the welfare state and the warfare state, including the much-beloved intelligence organism, which not only feeds on lies, deceptions, falsehoods, and chicanery, but also engineers, manufactures, distributes, and even fosters war propaganda, social engineering, and collectivism. Notice that he does not even call for the immediate withdrawal of all American GIs stationed in over 140 countries, including our forces in Iraq. And notice that he doesn't even call for the United States' withdrawal from the anti-American U.N. (an organization that the Bush administration and its collectivistic stalwarts neither condemn nor repudiate). But should we be dumbfounded by all and any of this?

No, Kerry says that he plans to "immediately reform" the intelligence community, as if the information (which is, more often than not, wrong) coming from the offices of the CIA and the NSA actually means anything. What's just as ludicrous is his misguided notion that the federal government's own policy on the issue "will be guided by facts" and that said "facts" are "never distorted by politics." But the truth is that the "facts" will never "guide" policy; they will only be distorted—even invented—to create policy. In other words, as long as the central planners and the social engineers remain in control of the intelligence data, there will only be more spinning and more lies to keep the American people in check. He's just simply trying to hide behind the hypocrisy while pooling the partisan wool over the American peoples' eyes. (While it is fortunate that not all Americans are falling for this shell game, it is, however, unfortunate that there are many who are, given that they are devout Kerry supporters and considering that they are staunch Democrats who would love to see Bush voted out of office—no matter the cost.)

Then Kerry says that he will restore America's "standard" of not going to war because "we want to," but because "we have to." That's a cute way of splitting partisan hairs. However, truth be known that he's not as "anti-war" as he likes to portray himself to be. Kerry is a classic example of what one would call "anti-war, but" candidate. It's nothing but sheer theatrics! How is this so? It's simple: he claims to "oppose" the war, but he is the one who, after all, handed a Republican president a blank check to declare war on Iraq by voting for an unconstitutional military authorization that allowed the president to do whatever he wanted, whenever it felt convenient for him. The senator claims that he had no idea that President Bush would move the country to war immediately, especially when that didn't include employing diplomatic measures. Didn't he even bother to pay attention to what the administration was doing the entire time? Bush wanted the war, and Kerry knew it. With the help of his yea vote, he delivered it to him like there was no tomorrow. Bush was only pretending to be diplomatic about the matter so that he wouldn't alienate the U.S. from the entire world.

Here's another point that totally justifies the "anti-war, but" charge. Kerry is not anti-war simply because he is truly pro-war. During the same speech, Kerry declared:

"I will never give any nation or any institution a veto over our national security.

"And I will build a stronger military. We will add 40,000 active duty troops, not in Iraq, but to strengthen American forces that are now overstretched, overextended and under pressure.

"We will double our Special Forces to conduct terrorist operations, anti-terrorist operations, and we will provide our troops with the newest weapons and technology to save their lives and win the battle. And we will end the backdoor draft of the National Guard and reservists."

But, in an April 18 appearance on NBC's Meet the Press, Kerry said that a new president—meaning him—and additional troops would be required to secure global support in order to stabilize the civil unrest in Iraq. Even before that, Kerry said that he would send 40,000 additional troops to the country, with half of that batch being military police officers and civil affairs agents while the other half would be utilized for combat. To anyone with a clear and open (not to mention sane) mind, does that sound like an anti-war stance to you?

All of this claptrap isn't just limited to Kerry though. Bush, who at least carries the pro-war mantle, is just as good at spinning as Kerry on this issue, even though he is far more effective than his counterpart. In a campaign speech he gave to supporters at the Aladdin Shrine Center in Columbus, Ohio on August 5, he noted:

"We are safer—we are safer and the world is better off because Saddam is sitting in a prison cell. I want to share something with you. Committing troops into harm's way is—in harm's way is the most difficult decision a President can make. That decision must always be last resort. That decision must be done when our vital interests are at stake, but after we've tried everything else. There must be a compelling national need to put our troops into harm's way. I felt that. I felt we had a compelling national need. I know we had tried diplomacy. I knew that diplomacy at this point couldn't possibly work because he had no intention of listening to demands of the free world. And when you put your troops in harm's way, you better have the best—the best equipment, the best support, and the best possible pay."

"Safer"? "Better off"? How are the U.S. and the world "safer" and "better off" with Hussein and the Iraqi government being deposed when it has resulted in an estimated number of over 11,000 civilian casualties and the death of over 530 troops, given that the Pentagon has refused to furnish an official tally of the massive body count? What about the maimed, including a young Iraqi boy who lost his arms, his parents, his brother, and 13 other members of his family?

Bush claims that he "tried diplomacy" with Hussein just prior to the invasion and occupation, but we know that's an outright lie. Why would Bush "try diplomacy" when war was on his mind following the 9/11 attacks? Bush obviously was aware of the fact that the United States' relationship with Hussein went back as far as the 1980s, when it was President Ronald Reagan and Vice President George H. Bush who supplied the Iraqi dictator with WMDs—all because Hussein needed them to conduct "medical research." Bush also knew that Hussein, by the time U.S. forces had invaded Iraq, was no longer in possession of said weapons that he had once procured from the U.S. and other Western nations. It became apparent that he disposed of the stockpiles that American and European officials handed to him.

Furthermore, this absurd notion that the U.S. had a "compelling national need" to send our GIs to their deaths does not have a pair of legs to stand on. What "compelling national need"? This is nothing but semantic bunk. Actually, it's a euphemism for coercing our soldiers to sacrifice themselves for nothing.

Adding insult to injury is the fact that the U.S. government's economic embargo against Iraq—and the insidious massacre of over 11,000 Iraqis and 530 American GIs—all gave the terrorists a legitimate excuse to attack the United States. Did over 3,000 Americans who were on those three planes that crashed into the World Trade Towers in New York, a part of the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and a field in Pennsylvania deserve to die? Absolutely not! No justification in the world can excuse what happened to the people on those flights. But then no justification can also excuse what the United States government did to the people of Iraq prior to and following 9/11 as well.

Unsurprisingly yet unfortunately the American people are going to support either Bush or Kerry for the presidency. That would be a big mistake, considering that they are just wasting their votes, not to mention wasting their time. Overall, to support either Republican George W. Bush or Democrat John F. Kerry for the Office of the President signifies supporting bigger government, more spending, more taxes, more regulations, a stronger welfare-warfare state, and more assaults on our individual liberty. That's why you shouldn't believe the spinmeisters. They want you to hand over your freedoms, not preserve them.

When will the American people ever get that?

Copyright © 2004 by Todd Andrew Barnett. All Rights Reserved. Permission to reprint any portion of or the entire article is hereby granted, provided that the author's name and credentials are included.


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