:: Bite The Wax Tadpole ::

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:: Friday, September 17, 2004 ::

Climate of Fear Update
I noted a climate of fear here in greater Seattle back in June. Actual attacks on Bush supporters (including one particularly vile incident) are now being reported around the country.

That said, the situation seems to have taken a turn for the better here on the Eastside. Bush stickers (mostly the relatively inconspicuous W'04 stickers) started appearing a few weeks ago and today they're nearly as common as Kerry stickers. I've had one for more than a month, without incident.

I've been assuming that we just reached the critical mass necessary to coax Bush supporters into risking a sticker on their car. If, on the other hand, all of these new stickers actually represent a surge in support for Bush, Kerry is a goner. If he's struggling in this area, he's dead in most of the country.

Update: Well, Kerry doesn't seem to be in trouble in Washington. Mrs. Tadpole's alternative theory is that the bumper stickers we're seeing are a show of defiance by beleaguered Bush supporters and that complacent Kerry supporters don't feel the need to show their colors.

:: Erik | 9/17/2004 01:13:00 AM | | ::
:: Wednesday, September 15, 2004 ::
Blogospheric Intuition
Trust your intuition. I sat down to blog this and found similar sentiments here and here. A storm is brewing.

The news that CBS will go to the mat in defense of the Killian forgeries left me curiously glum. This just isn't funny any more.

This is no longer the slapstick tale of an eager-to-believe Dan Rather (and friends) duped by clumsy forgeries. Something deeper and darker is going on.

CBS seems to be aiming for a "we'll just agree to disagree" resolution, despite the fact that pretty much everyone is on the other side of the fence. Credibility is the most important asset for a news organization and it seems unlikely that CBS would be willing to subject it to the kind of body-blow that's coming unless the alternative is far, far worse.

I don't know what CBS is afraid of, but I'm pretty sure we'll find out. The hounds have the scent and the real story will break. I'm starting to worry that it will be much, much, uglier (and much, much bigger) than any of us have been expecting so far.

Update: Beldar doesn't think this is funny any more, either.

Update: Roger Simon has gotten Tim Blair speculating, too. I keep coming back to similar scenarios though I don't have anything but a gut feeling to back it up.

Update: Rather's "Fake but accurate" defense is the surreal and sad concoction of a confused man in denial. Daniel Wiener's speculative timeline now sounds about right to me.

Update: Mark Steyn thinks there something huge lurking behind CBS' stonewalling.

:: Erik | 9/15/2004 01:07:00 AM | | ::
:: Monday, September 13, 2004 ::
I'm astounded at how frequently I've heard left-of-center commentators respond to the Rathergate forgeries with (something like): "These documents might be forgeries but let's get back to the real story -- George Bush's National Guard Service.

Okey doke.

The real story is that there is so litle substance to the accusations about Bush's National Guard service that his accusers have had to resort to crude forgeries to keep the story moving.

The real story is that major media figures (and left-of-center Bloggers) are so in love with the anti-Bush Narrative they've constructed that they no longer apply even a sniff test to information that fits the Narrative. Anything that contradicts the Narrative is dismissed without consideration.

The real story is Big Media's doomed attempt to stonewall the accusations and disparage their detractors as a bunch of anonymous loons in Pajamas and/or paid operatives. I know the names of Rather's accusers, and their reasoning and sources are posted for all to see. In conrast, Rather's sources are anonymous and his reasons for believing them are completely opaque; the few that were actually named have abandoned ship or been told to shut up.

So, yes. Let's get back to the real story.
:: Erik | 9/13/2004 03:18:00 PM | | ::

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