The Nudnik File

Nudnik - n. U.S. colloq. Esp. in Jewish usage: a pestering, nagging, or irritating person

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

              Dirty Politics
Undoubtedly, this year's Presidential campaign has been one of the meanest and most ferocious in recent memory. This viciousness has been directed at a sitting President like never before. David Horowitz details some of these attacks.
As President, he has been denounced as a traitor who has "betrayed" Americans, a liar, a corrupt manipulator who misled America and sent its young and innocent to battle in full knowledge that their mission was fraudulent and their deaths needless. It has been charged that the sole reason he sent the young to die was to line the pockets of his corporate Texas cronies. He has been accused in advance of being responsible for any dirty nuclear bomb that terrorists detonate in the United States. And these are merely the attacks originating with Al Gore and Ted Kennedy before spreading through the Democratic ranks. Not a single Democrat, by the way, has stood up to deplore the recklessness of these smears, or to speculate on how such attacks might affect the fortunes of the troops under the President's command. Instead of fulfilling their role as neutral arbiters of the facts, the media have regularly given these destructive and despicable accusations a free pass.
Even more interesting, however, is the Kerry campaign's cover-up of who its advisers actually are. Lawrence Kaplan shows how in order to "amplify" the message of his campaign Kerry's unpaid and secret advisers have been appearing in the press supporting his themes.
The campaign has concerns other than intellectual integrity, foremost among them the "amplification"--a term favored at Kerry headquarters--of its foreign policy message. Hence, in messages from Kerry aides to members of the campaign's advisory teams, the stipulation holds: Go forth and spread the word, but say it's your own. As a result, when these scholars take to the airwaves and the newspapers in agreement with Kerry's positions, they do so under their own names and affiliations. This leaves readers completely unaware of an expert's affiliation and makes it impossible to disentangle a scholar's views from the campaign's. "If you've signed on to a campaign, even in an unpaid capacity," says the Center for Public Integrity's Bill Allison, "and you don't disclose your affiliation when writing about campaign issues, you're misleading the public."
|| Nudnik 11:32 AM
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