As election time rolls near and you see many on the left correctly and sometimes incorrectly accusing the right of using dirty tricks against their opponents, don’t let them fool you into thinking that Republicans are the only ones who use these techniques. Recent examples show us the levels that Democrats and their supporters are willing to stoop in order to win the latest “Most important election in our history”. Today’s story turns out to be about body armor.
First let’s examine the recent ad campaign by VoteVets. In the ads, Republican opponents are accused of voting against giving the troops body armor and instead issuing vets left over from Vietnam, the first attack against George Allen (R) of Virginia. They point to a vote on an amendment advanced just 2 days before the fall of Baghdad that called for just over $1 billion for unspecified “National Guard and Reserve Equipment.” No list of the type of equipment was given, debate on the topic did not mention body armor.
In fact, there was already new body armor scheduled to be shipped to the troops but in a classic military snafu it was delayed. When we check factcheck.org on the subject, we see the reality behind the ads.
the Pentagon was already in the process of vastly increasing its orders for the latest-model armored vests, and the shortages that plagued some units in Iraq for the first few months of the war were due not to a lack of money, but to the inability of Pentagon contractors to manufacture the vests fast enough to meet the sudden spike in demand, and problems getting the gear shipped to the troops. A report issued in April 2005 said:
GAO: Temporary shortages of the Interceptor body armor occurred because of
acquisition delays related to lack of key materials and distribution problems in theater.
As the Government Accountability Office reported, when the Landrieu amendment came up in March 2003 the Pentagon had already increased its orders for body armor roughly 10-fold and was buying it as fast as suppliers could produce it. Approving Sen. Landrieu’s amendment could not, therefore, have called forth a single additional vest or ceramic plate.
Further the ad mentions armor left over from Vietnam but the ad itself shows later body armor made in the 80s and used until 1999. Another example of trying to create a false impression that just doesn’t exist to smear your opponent’s record.
This is, of course, on drawback to a two-party system, you no longer have to defend your record or try to convince people why they should vote for your, you just have to smear your opponent sufficiently enough to convince people that ‘anyone is better than this’. In reality, that is seldom true. The other person is usually just as bad if not worse because they are attempting to gain or retain power for their party and themselves, only the rare few are interested in upholding the constitution or representing their constituents.
Both parties are guilty of this, the same topic was used against John Kerry in the 2004 election. But the worst part of this story is that those who were against using these tactics against Kerry are now feeling free to use them against their opponents. No principle involved, no sense of hypocrisy. Just do what you can do win, win by any means.
So the next time your liberal friends start telling you that the Democratic party and its followers don’t participate in dirty tricks you will know the truth behind it.