October 2004© Arthur Ruger 2004
I've listened long enough to Dick Cheney's pretenses to knowing more about what it means to command in wartime than veterans
who've been there and done that. His self-projected war wisdom seems most accurately defined by the pipe dreams of the Project
For a New American Century with which he has an intimate history.
Cheney's insistance that a vote for Kerry will result in another major attack on the U.S.A. is dishonest fear-mongering at
Mr. Cheney, you haven't been there. You haven't done that.
Pretending to speak as someone who has been there and has done that demonstrates the desparation of ignorant arrogance. Giving
public speeches only before narrow and restricted audiences - preaching to your choir - in which you purport great wisdom
about leadership is part and parcel of the shallowness by which you pretend to govern and administer your responsibilities.
The reason for that in view of your lack of personal military experience is the intellectual hubris and academic assumptions
so amply expressed by your fellow theorists at the Project for a New American Century.
Book learning is still just book learning. A college education without on-the-job experience and exposure is still limited
to textbooks and theories. A Vice President's inability to express empathy with the American military's day-to-day reality
continues to broadcast much more powerfully and loudly than criticisms around who is fit or unfit for leadership - particularly
in a military role.
You and the President continue a stubborn insistence that America is safer because of Iraq and 130,000+ troops in Iraq.
In partnering with George Bush, who thinks that substance communicates itself in swagger, bravado and foolish stubbornness,
you and he pretend to the wisdom of Lincoln and Roosevelt who actually demonstrated wise wartime leadership. However, you
two reveal something more like the rash arrogance of George Armstrong Custer.
Your political advisors have been so blatantly devious, manipulative, and disingenuous that it is no longer possible to separate
the candidates from their managers regardless of a pretense of aloofness and no connection to campaign negativity and dirty
Mr. Cheney, my vote for or against the incumbents will have no impact on a terrorist attack before or several months after
the election. In either circumstance such an attack will be the responsibility of the Bush administration and everyone in
In either circumstance an attack will have occurred at a moment whose impact could have been diminished if you had given a
higher priority to America's need for greater preparation and homeland protection while on your watch and not wasted our
resources in a singularly misguided and mismanaged context in Iraq.
In either circumstance an attack will have occurred while the American Military is occupied abroad to a degree of expenditure
that has left the Pentagon over which you and George preside struggling to manage and sustain.
If an attack could have been avoided, its enormity reduced and the consequences made less dreadful had there been a stronger
presence of Active Duty, Reserve and National Guard troops within our own boundaries, all the foolishness about Weapons of
Mass Destruction, Sadam/Osama linkage and nation-building in Iraq will become powerfully insignificant.
We the people will justifiably hold the Bush Administration responsible and no amount of yours and George's on-going flip-flops
about Iraq; no amount of equating the War on Terrorism with the War in Iraq as one and the same and no amount of PNAC theorizing
is going to change that.
You won't be able to blame Clinton, Kerry or Supreme Court Judges. You won't even be able to blame Rumsfeld or Powell. You
won't be able to attack the messengers, discredit the critics or shift the blame to someone else.
But I will tell you this ... a Kerry election will put into place a much more experienced, capable and strong-willed wisdom
for dealing with a terrorist-attack and its probable consequences.
John Edwards is right. There ARE two America's Mr. Vice President.
One is our electorate which is comprised of the entire spectrum of American life - the rich and the poor, the employed as
well as the unemployed, the insured and the uninsured, the vetereans and those who did not serve, the military members and
the families who support and pray for them.
The Other America are those currently elected officials who have demonstrated a fear of straight talk, an unwillingness to
accept responsibility, a willingness to manipulate and even falsify truth in an all-out attempt to stay in office. They include
elected Republican politicians who have compromised legitimate conservative values in an unwise desire to keep a Republican
President in office regardless of his ability. You can see them on the talk shows struggling to put a positive spin on administration
policies, behaviors and rationales..
The Other America is led by those who restrict their public appearances and speeches to hand-picked audiences and who are
afraid to face disagreement and confront the hard questions publicly; who think they solve problems by attacking the messengers
and betraying the whistle-blowers.
The Other America are those who fire employees for political opinions, broadcasters who pretend to fairness and balance and
proclaim a monopoly on patriotism. These are those who have assumed that what is good for themselves is absolutely good for
It has been asked, "Who wants to be the last soldier to die for a lie?"
An equally important question to be asked is, "Who wants to be remembered as that part of an electorate persuaded to vote
for candidates whose most powerful political efforts demonstrated an acute lack of moral and ethical integrity, on obsession
with secrecy and little reverence for the truth?"