Monday, August 22, 2005

Smear-mongers and Cindy Sheehan

There is a great piece by Frank Rich in the New York Times today entitled The Swift Boating of Cindy Sheehan which explores how the administration's usual smear tactics are backfiring this time. From the article:

"True to form, the attack on Cindy Sheehan surfaced early on Fox News, where she was immediately labeled a 'crackpot' by Fred Barnes. The right-wing blogosphere quickly spread tales of her divorce, her angry Republican in-laws, her supposed political flip-flops, her incendiary sloganeering and her association with known ticket-stub-carrying attendees of 'Fahrenheit 9/11.' Rush Limbaugh went so far as to declare that Ms. Sheehan's 'story is nothing more than forged documents - there's nothing about it that's real.'...

THIS summer in Crawford, the White House went to this playbook once too often. When Mr. Bush's motorcade left a grieving mother in the dust to speed on to a fund-raiser, that was one fat-cat party too far. The strategy of fighting a war without shared national sacrifice has at last backfired, just as the strategy of Swift Boating the war's critics has reached its Waterloo before Patrick Fitzgerald's grand jury in Washington. The 24/7 cable and Web attack dogs can keep on sliming Cindy Sheehan. The president can keep trying to ration the photos of flag-draped caskets. But this White House no longer has any more control over the insurgency at home than it does over the one in Iraq."

I cannot say it better than that.


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