Sunday, August 29, 2004

Turning sauce for the goose into sauce for the gander 

Digby in Projection Politics presents a very interesting thesis:
Rove has developed a campaign of projection in which he tars his opponents with his own candidates' weaknesses and then attacks them. He attacks Kerry for phony heroism thirty years ago when just last year his own candidate had himself filmed in a little costume prancing around on an aircraft carrier pretending he'd won a war that had only begun. But, by tarring Kerry with using war as a PR stunt for his own personal gain, people can process the uncomfortable feelings they are experiencing about Iraq as not really being caused by Junior, but by his rival who is the real shallow opportunist who only pretends to be a man of proven leadership and experience.
He spent 70 million to get people to call Kerry a flip flopper when the truth is that the compassionate-conservative-uniter-not-divider has a very recent proven record of unprecedented ugly partisanship and ruthless bloodlust. He's mananged to convince a large number of Americans that Kerry is unprincipled when the fiscal conservative Bush has just spent the entire surplus and run up the deficit beyond our wildest imaginings just three years ago. That's a pretty good trick. He's projected Bush's weaknesses on to Kerry and then gone after them ruthlessly. It makes it very difficult to then turn the attack back on Bush because it's been co-opted.

Given this thesis, then, if Kerry were to do the same thing he would:
1. attack Bush's speaking style. Too difficult to understand, too accented, too many convoluted sentences and mispronounced words
2. attack Bush's appearance. Too short and slight, mouth too small, ears too big. Alfred E Neuman
3. attack Bush's "signature" accomplishments. Too many announcements without any action. Too many photo opportunities without any real commitment. Too much pandering to the base.
Actually, sounds like a plan to me.

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