Pandora's Box

Location: Dallas, Texas, United States

I graduated with a BA in Print Journalism (major) and Criminology (minor), but have spent the last 10 years as a civilian working for the Department of Defense (8 of those years holding various positions in IT). I am an Army brat who has lived in Colorado (I was born in the same hospital as John Kerry, but I ask my Republican friends not to hold that against me), Kentucky, Texas, Alaska and Germany before settling back in Texas in January 2000.

Friday, September 17, 2004

I'm surprised the Democrats aren't now questioning....

....the credibility of CBS News after the new poll numbers released by The New York Times and CBS News. The poll of 1,088 registered voters, which was conducted by phone Thursday through Sunday, shows Bush with a 9-point lead (50% to 41%) among likely voters, up from a 7-point lead last week.

Our man's not *that* far behind. No, it's a very close race. We keep hammering the President on Iraq and the economy and health care. Isn't anybody listening to us? WE'RE NOT THAT FAR BEHIND!!!

Actually, they're probably not (not that the hammering has helped them any). While one other poll (Gallop) shows a 14-point (54% to 40%) lead this week, one other poll (Pew) shows a statistical dead heat (47% to 46%) among likely voters. Where's the truth? Probably somewhere in the middle. Both campaigns seem to be saying that it's about a 5 or 6-point race right now (advantage: Bush). Although Bush's post-convention bounce does seem to have settled down, Kerry hasn't managed to score any points which might help to boost him, reduced to trying to shout out his message over the tempest that is Rathergate, plus the all-hurricane, all-the-time news in the Southeast US (see, there are more important things in life than the election).

But you do have to wonder, given that all three polls were conducted as the firestorm over "60 Minutes II" was flaring up, how much were the numbers influenced by that? I don't think there's a poll question that asks "So, how much did Dan Rather influence your decision to vote the way you are?" Let's see how everything plays out in the polls being conducted this weekend, now that it has been pretty conclusively determined this week that those memos were forgeries, that the possible forger is a virulent Bush-hater with a grudge going back to the mid- to late-1990s, and the retired officer (Staudt) referred to in one of the memos as exerting pressure to gloss over Bush's performance has come out and said it didn't happen (both that he was still hanging around the TANG a year and a half after he retired and that he asked anyone to "sugarcoat" anything).

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

So much for signs that even the NYT was getting on the Rathergate bandwagon, as evidenced by William Safire's recent opinion piece. Here are a few exerpts from today's column by Nicholas D. Kristof.

First, there's reason to be suspicious of some (emphasis mine) of those CBS documents.

Only some of them? Which ones, exactly, does he believe are real? How does he know they are real? He never says. Apparently, some of them must be real because they support his hypothesis.

Second, we shouldn't be distracted by our doubts about the CBS documents. There's no doubt that Mr. Bush benefited from favoritism. The speaker of the Texas House has acknowledged making the call to get Mr. Bush into the National Guard.

At least he gets Barnes' position from the time Bush entered the TANG in 1968 correct. That's more than Barnes was able to do. Not to mention that Barnes' own daughter has pointed out Barnes' partisan and ever-changing story.

Kristoff is apparently employing the "Dan Rather defense". The story's true, even if we can't prove it. It's not up to us to prove it. It's up to all of you to disprove it. Sorry, the burden of proof is on the PROSECUTION.

Kristof and Rather have both missed the point. If they were players for the Texas Rangers back in the day, GWB would have fired them both because they apparently can't hit the broad side of a barn. Because of their reliance on memos that every expert so far has said either are obvious fakes or can't be authenticated (if they don't want to go out on the "obviously fake" limb), the story is no longer about whether or not Bush got favorable treatment in the TANG (he probably did, but he wouldn't be the first). It's now about an MSM that we can apparently no longer trust to be objective and to report the FACTS, not suppositions.

It's a conspiracy....

Only, it appears it's against Dan Rather. Just look at these nuggets from the LAT, in an article entitled "Rather Rides Out Latest Partisan Storm", by Elizabeth Jensen, an LAT staff writer.

"'Some people erroneously see Dan as having an agenda,' CBS News President Andrew Heyward said. 'He is a fair-minded, tough-minded reporter doing his job. But he is also a celebrity' who has been used as a 'poster child for mainstream media agendas.'

Heyward said he believed that was 'unfair and unjustified, but it is certainly a factor if you need to personalize an attack on CBS or mainstream media.'"

Oh, poor baby. And then there's his explanation for the interview with then Vice President George H.W. Bush that he walked out on in 1988.

"Facing questions it didn't want to answer, the vice president's 'political apparatus understandably, out of necessity, chose to question the questioner,' Rather said."

And does that somehow makes Bush's question invalid? So Dan Rather can dish it out but he can't take it? Maybe he should pack up his marbles and run home if he doesn't like the way it is.

"Likewise, he said, his critics are 'people who for their own partisan, political agendas can't deny the core truth of this story … and want to change the subject and make the story about me rather than have the story be about the unanswered questions about President Bush's military service.'"

If the story's true, PROVE IT. He hasn't managed to do that and he won't if he continues to insist on hanging onto those documents like they were handed down on stone tablets from on high. Obviously, he's never heard of the "fruit of the poisonous tree"....or, more likely, he just doesn't care at this point.

Finally, there's this little gem from Heyward again.

'"I think we've gone out of our way to reveal more of the process than most journalists do,' Heyward said. 'We're going to have to take the criticism.'"

Did I miss something? What exactly have they revealed? Even one of their own purported "experts" says CBS tried to muzzle him. They've revealed nothing except their own ineptitude and narrow-minded world view.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

How it all began....

If you've been wondering how the whole Rathergate debacle began, here's Power Line's original post on the subject.

New article in Dallas Morning News

My hometown newspaper has an interview with Colonel Killian's secretary on its website (you do have to register, but it's free and shouldn't you keep up with what the MSM is up to, especially these days?). It's interesting for spin ....

The secretary was very specific in remembering specific people and dates when talking to the newspaper and she says with absolute certainty that these are not documents that she typed and that she would have typed them up (not Killian)....

....but then she goes on to say that "they accurately reflect the viewpoints of Lt. Col. Killian and documents that would have been in the personal file"

This last statement comes a few paragraphs after she called the President "unfit for office" and "selected, not elected"

Well, at least the Dallas Morning News was up front about her political leanings. That's a lot more than CBS was regarding Jim Moore.

Democrats, of course, will immediately jump on the idea that documents such as the ones put forth by CBS did actually exist, regardless of the fact that Colonel Killian's own secretary, who would have typed such documents for him (she confirms what his wife said about him not typing), says that these specific documents are FORGERIES! But the story's true....Sorry, but in court, I believe they call that the "fruit of the poisonous tree". If one piece of evidence relied on to support an argument is poisoned, then the entire argument is tainted. Of course, all those Democratic lawyers, including those two who want to lead this country, have ignored that so far.

Did Bush get preferential treatment and shirk some of his guard duties? I honestly don't know and I don't care as far as the issue influencing my vote for President (as if no one can tell by looking at the countdown calendar on my website whom I'm voting for). I care about what is going to happen to my friends in Iraq. I care that the government does its best to ensure an event like 9/11 never happens again. I care about how high my taxes are. I care about whether or not Social Security will be there in 23 years when I'm eligible to retire from my job. Shouldn't that be what the election is about....the future?

On this day....

I heard an interesting little tidbit on the radio this morning when I was getting ready for work which seemed particularly appropriate to note, given recent events.....

On this day in 1866, George K. Anderson first patented.....typewriter ribbon.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Welcome to Pandora's Box

I've always been fascinated with the legend of Pandora (although mythology is more my sister's interest than mine). In Greek mythology, Pandora was the first woman on Earth and her name means "all-gifted" - each of the gods gave her a different gift to make her perfect. Zeus sent her as a punishment to man, although I'm not quite certain how that was supposed to work out. Although given what happened later.....

Pandora was sent to Earth as the wife of Epimetheus, the brother of Prometheus. Zeus sent along with her a box that she was warned never to open. Eventually, her curiosity (a gift from Athena, who I have the feel did not have the best of intentions) got the better of her and she decided to take a peek. Pandora quickly slammed the lid shut, but not before evil and misery to escape. Fortunately, she was able to prevent one creature from fleeing - HOPE. And as long as man has hope, he can overcome anything.