X-rated critics

We have received an overwhelming — overwhelmingly positive — response to our column on John Kerry’s Kurtz chronicles. Our friends at the Claremont Insitute have also posted the column as “Apocalypse Kerry.” An editor at the Philadelphia Daily News — the former journalistic home of the great Mark Bowden — wrote to request permission to publish the column in the Daily News on Friday. We’re getting close to both New York and Washington. Those whispers are getting louder.
We received a few critical messages as well. Thinking it might be possible to learn something from them, I am going to post each one here. Billy McLean wrote:

Hey assholes, I hope you read today’s Star Tribune about the results of the Los Angeles Times investigation into Kerry’s Vietnam History.
I am a Korean War Veteran who landed in Pusan Korea on 28 February 1951. I was two months into my eighteenth year of life. I have zero respect and 100% distain for a group of low life pricks like to Swift Boat Veterans for the truth. They are so low down that they could easily walk beneath the belly of a snake while wearing their best top hat. I have no respect for Right Wing Organizations who defend draft dodgers like George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfwitz, Karl Rove, and the most dangerous man in America, John Ashcroft. Where were they on Christmas Eve of 1968? They sure as hell were not in Southeast Asia. You guys keep this shit up and it is going to backfire big time on your mangy asses. Oh by the way, I would like to know your Military Credentials. I bet you both are big time “Combat Veterans.”

Well, Billy, our military credentials are pretty closely guarded secrets, but we thank you for your service, I think. Mike Germain (“fighting fascist dirt bags every single day”) wrote:

Sieg Heil! Isn’t that what morons like you do every time the King farts? Your piece in the Star Trib today only typifies the lies that some from right wing knobs like you. You people spread garbage about people who actually DID serve, while trying to provide cover for the draft dodging pieces of shit who are killing as many people as they can, just to make a buck. You dipsticks probably even think the Vietnam war was a good idea don’t you?
Lets see, King George flew the skies of Texas protecting us from Mexico while drinking beer and snorting cocaine. Dickhead Cheney got five deferments more than he deserved while chicken hawk scum like Paul Wolfowitz and others did the same thing.
It so easy to be an arm chair warrior isn’t morons? Sending other people’s childeren to get killed, maimed and scarred so that right wing slime, including you, can either line your pockets with taxpayer money, or is it that it makes you feel like a tough guy?
And why haven’t you two goosestepping fascists enlisted yet? If you really think warmongering is such a good idea why are you sitting here while real people are being killed for no purpose what so ever.
You make me sick.

Folks, are we beginning to observe a pattern here? Perhaps Mike was suffering from combat fatigue caused by fighting fascist dirt bags every day. Steve Korzonowski, however, provided no such ready-made excuse:

You guys are the biggest piles of human garbage I have encountered. You have negative ads because Bush blew it – he was and now is a failure – and you know it.
You have nothing to go on so you sling mud – but we the people see through your CRAP and lies you rotting pieces of human excrement.
Fuck you and go away, please. ‘Nuff said, Jed.

We’re not quite finished yet with our sociological investigations. Jerry Kottom wrote:

After reading your article in the Tribune I was wondering what war you served during or if you have ever been in the military at all. I was also curious about your opinion on George Bush’s attendance during his time in the Guard. To me, it looks like a bunch of cowards calling names. As a veteran I am offended that two punk lawyers and a privileged boy who ran away from the war questioning another vet. Keep it up and more vets will be saying the same thing.

We’re not sure which of us Jerry deems “privileged” — I’m perfectly willing to confess — but I’m also a punk attorney. I don’t think any of the three of us ran away from the war, however, although we might have if we needed to. In any event, alone among the critical messages we received was one that raised an issue of fact. Alan Schlingenbaum sent us the copy of a message he had sent to the editor of the Star Tribune editorial page. It is long and detailed, but it’s interesting and worth a look:

Various commentators are making a big deal about the geography of the Mekong River delta. Does the Mekong River run perpendicular to the border between Vietnam and Cambodia, or does it run along the border? The answer depends on how closely you look.
The following item is from ABC News (8/11: click here):

Last night, Kerry adviser Michael Meehan responded to the claims in an interview with ABC News’ Stu Chamberlain. “The Mekong Delta consists of the border between Cambodia and Vietnam, so on Christmas Eve in 1968, he was in fact on patrol

Responses

Books to read from Power Line