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Bush Uses 9/11 in Campaign Ads

Election 2004 Campaign Ads 9/11

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#21 Shalamar

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 08:26 PM

It's not like its not been done before. Back during WWiI the Democratic FDR campaigned for his forth term (partially ) on the basis that his "reelection was necessary to win WWII"
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#22 QueenTiye

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 08:42 PM

I was watching that guy Scarborough or something on MSNBC the other night about this issue.  The concerns raised by those family members objecting is that the ads are inherently political, and therefore are using a uniting moment to be divisive. They also think that showing images of ground zero crosses the line. The other issue is that some family members, upset over Bush's approach to the 9/11 commission, don't feel that he should be benefitting from 9/11.  Other family members appreciate the ads, and appreciate the president speaking to the country about 9/11 in the context of national heroism.

I personally see it as a nonissue.  9/11 is going to evoke different responses from everyone - but the president could hardly have not mentioned it.  If using the images crosses the line, so do the numerous people hawking pictures of 9/11 at ground zero for a buck.  Yes, the president can be held to a higher standard - but I think the standard is subject to interpretation.  I think the families who have grievances would do better to speak up about those, rather than get sidetracked on this issue.

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#23 Norville

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 09:36 PM

I haven't seen the ad yet, so probably have no right to an opinion, but I'll muse "aloud" here. I suppose he's justified in using whatever issue he likes to run. 9/11 24/7.

I know of a New Yorker who has an opinion: she claims that NYC never saw any of the relief aid Bush promised them (I've heard this alleged; is it true?), but he wants to use their bodies to glorify himself/his agenda, and she finds it annoying.

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On the one hand I don't want to be reminded. On the other, I need to be reminded-we all do. We can't forget nor should we...

Any time I feel that I may not want to be reminded that 9/11 happened, I give myself a talking-to. We need to remember, despite our society having become one with a 30-second attention span.

Quote

They also think that showing images of ground zero crosses the line.

On the other hand... 9/11 doesn't "belong" solely to the families of those who died on that day, does it? They were the ones who were directly affected, but the entire country felt the jolt of it.

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The other issue is that some family members, upset over Bush's approach to the 9/11 commission, don't feel that he should be benefitting from 9/11.

This does make sense to me. He didn't want it investigated, but is willing to use it to benefit his campaign? Hmph. Oh well. *shrug*
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#24 Shalamar

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 09:44 PM

The ads are on line I've watched them carefully and the tiny amount that shows 911 images is blended in, non offensive, and I see no problem with these ad's -

View ads here

According to some policial watcher blogs I've read a number of self defined liberals say that the Democrats have 'shot themselves' in the foot in raising such an uproar over these ads.
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#25 MuseZack

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:12 PM

I'm not really offended by the ads.  The flag-draped remains were a little close to the line, but like it or not, 9/11 is a huge part of Bush's presidency and he has a right to remind people of that.

That said, how incredibly stupid were these ads from a strictly tactical perspective?  Karl Rove and company had to know this would push the buttons of a lot of the 9/11 families, who haven't been shy about guarding what they see as their turf.  

So the big political story of the week was supposed to be the rollout of these inoffensive, image-burnishing ads which were supposed to remind voters of what they liked best about Bush.  Watch out, Democrats, I'm gonna smush you with my 150 million dollar warchest!  Instead, the story became outraged 9/11 families accusing Bush of political necrophilia toward their loved ones-- not exactly the image Rove wanted to sell with that 10 million dollar campaign.   Kerry barely needed to say a thing.  He could just stand back and let the angry families do his work for him.  

And the fact that the ad rollout coincided with Bush's stonewalling of the 9/11 commission just invited all-too-easy accusations of hypocricy.  Again, amateur hour from the re-election campaign people.

More and more I'm coming to the conclusion thaat Karl Rove is not the genius many people think he is.  He's certainly no Lee Atwater.  Instead, he was simply lucky to have run his candidate against a remarkably inept opponent in 2000 (though he still managed to lose the popular vote)
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#26 Delvo

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:31 PM

Keep in mind that that "loss in the popular vote" was actually a dip of several percentage points that lasted for a few days, election day being one of them, thanks to the timing of the alcohol story's release. For weeks after that and months before it there was a steady pattern of Bush winning the "popular vote" by a cushy, although not vast, margin. The election results don't reflect the overall success of his campaign, just a blip when they got blindsided at a crucial moment.

Even if this particular instance isn't an example of it, how they have managed to become so inept since then is quite a mystery; I could almost wonder if it's on purpose, but I can't fit that notion into any larger framework that makes sense.

But this story's not going anywhere, and people are already talking about how silly the Democrats who are howling over this look, so maybe this wasn't a mistake but a matter of handing them the gun with which to shoot their own feet. Or they knew something, but nothing serious, would come of it and figured a little bit of this silliness was worth enduring in order to make an ad that really says what they want it to say and represents themselves right anyway. Either way, this could be a calculation, rather than just a mistake of not realizing the compaints would happen.

#27 Rov Judicata

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:31 PM

Bush can't win. If he doesn't mention it, then he's omitting a huge part of his presidency, and people will accuse him of being ashamed of his record in the war on terror. If he so much as alludes to 9/11, then the media finds as many people as it can who are offended, without using any scientific means to see how many people are ACTUALLY offended. As noted, most of the people quoted so far have ties to firmly anti-Bush groups well before this. Under those circumstances, how can Bush run on his record?

Rove et al have to go ahead, knowing that the media is going to blast them no matter what they do. It's not so much a liberal/consrvative thing as much as it is the fact that the media tends to like piling on the guy who CW says will win... whether it's Howard Dean, George Bush, or Bill Clinton. I guess it keeps things more interesting...
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#28 MuseZack

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:42 PM

Javert Rovinski, on Mar 7 2004, 03:29 AM, said:

Bush can't win. If he doesn't mention it, then he's omitting a huge part of his presidency, and people will accuse him of being ashamed of his record in the war on terror. If he so much as alludes to 9/11, then the media finds as many people as it can who are offended, without using any scientific means to see how many people are ACTUALLY offended. As noted, most of the people quoted so far have ties to firmly anti-Bush groups well before this. Under those circumstances, how can Bush run on his record?

Rove et al have to go ahead, knowing that the media is going to blast them no matter what they do. It's not so much a liberal/consrvative thing as much as it is the fact that the media tends to like piling on the guy who CW says will win... whether it's Howard Dean, George Bush, or Bill Clinton. I guess it keeps things more interesting...
Again, though, the timing is simply spectacularly bad.  You don't pat yourself on the back for your 9/11 leadership the same week you play games about testifying before the 9/11 commission.  

And the media at large, while touching on the fact that Kerry has sewn up the endorsement of the firefighters' union (which was a tactically savvy maneuver), has mostly been sympathetic to the 9/11 families, who have been sacred cows when it comes to media treatment for the past two years.
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#29 Shalamar

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:49 PM

Quote

Let me show you a little evidence that'll back-up what I'm saying. I went through an AP article entitled 9/11 Victims' Kin Angered by Bush Ads that features 9/11 relatives who are "outraged" over Bush's ads and I googled every person who had an angry reaction. Interestingly enough, 5 out of the 6 people interviewed had an ax to grind with George Bush. The people who trashed Bush in this one are...

-- Coleen Kelly who is a member of an anti-war group called "Peaceful Tomorrows" & spoke at an anti-war rally with Susan Sarandon.

-- Jeff Zack & Harold Schaitberger are the spokesman and president of the International Association of Fire Fighters Union who "gave Kerry an early endorsement in the presidential race".

-- I found no previous attacks on Bush by Barbara Minervino who "questioned whether Bush was "capitalizing on the event"'.

-- Like Colleen Kelly, David Potorti is part of an anti-war group called Peaceful Tomorrows. Here's a quote from an interview he did at Buzzflash back in October of 2003,

"I feel like the foreign policy of the Bush Administration is almost like a second assault on us. We had this terrorist attack and now it's almost like we have this other attack from our own government which is doing things which clearly are not in our interests, and clearly are not reducing the chances of another terrorist attack happening again. Sometimes I feel quite assaulted from all quarters. And it's just a very odd place to be -- to feel like your own government is not operating in your best interest."

-- Kristen Breitweiser has been claiming for quite a while that the Bush administration is covering up/refusing to investigate 9/11. Read more about it in this 2003 article called "Four 9/11 Moms Battle Bush" -- and yes, Breitweiser is one of the moms battling Bush.

Link to rest of  entry at Right Wing News
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#30 Rov Judicata

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 10:52 PM

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Zack: Again, though, the timing is simply spectacularly bad. You don't pat yourself on the back for your 9/11 leadership the same week you play games about testifying before the 9/11 commission.

That's true. Frankly, Bush's conditions on testifying make me wonder what he doesn't want us to hear. <And no, I'm not in wacky conspiracy land, but 'what did he know in advance?' land. If everything is on the level, then what's the problem with testifying?>. However, if we take it as a given that Bush is going to continue to stonewall on the 9/11 testimony, then his timing will ALWAYS be bad, because that story won't go away any time soon. As such, it's just as good to go now and-- hopefully-- get the 'hypocricy' story out of the way so the media won't return to it.

<BTW, the Democrats fired *way* too early on the AWOL Bush story. Barring some spectacular new revelation, that won't be revived any time soon, and it would have been a great issue in oh, say, October. They may have done the same thing again>

Quote

And the media at large, while touching on the fact that Kerry has sewn up the endorsement of the firefighters' union (which was a tactically savvy maneuver), has mostly been sympathetic to the 9/11 families, who have been sacred cows when it comes to media treatment for the past two years.

That's true. But they've also fallen into a classic fallacy, whereby 9/11 family members are a monolithic entity. As such, five or six people thinking it inappropriate becomes "9/11 families outraged!".

Almost completely unrelated, finding out the 9/11 families are only human has been somewhat disheartening. The constant squabbling over the 9/11 memorial, and some families opting out of the 9/11 compensation fund and suing is just depressing.

<This is all, btw, just a portent. Five will get you ten that some untraceable 527 will release a 'Kerry=Traitor' ad before the general.... and even money on 'Bush=Hitler'.>
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#31 MuseZack

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Posted 06 March 2004 - 11:06 PM

^^
Oh, I absolutely agree that the 9/11 families shouldn't have exclusive ownership of the day.  And let's not even get into some of the sleazy goings on with firefighters having affairs with their friends' widows they were supposed to be counseling, and so forth.  But despite the only human reality, 9/11 relatives still have a big megaphone when they speak about the issue.

As for the AWOL story, it was weird how that filtered up.  It started with Michael Moore shooting his mouth off (surprise surprise!), then went to Peter Jennings demanding that Wesley Clark renounce Moore's statement during a debate, then Terry McCauliffe of the DNC made an AWOL crack and suddenly the mainstream media which had pretty much Bush a pass in 2000 on the issue went and reopened the case.  The story did its job (building the counternarrative of Bush as lazy, shirking "fortunate son" to undermine the narrative of Bush as stalwart, straight-shooting regular guy), then went away, barring any more revelations.
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#32 QueenTiye

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 01:55 AM

Oh - thanks Zack for reminding me about the flag-draped coffins thing.  That was the other issue - the fact that Bush banned showing flag-draped coffins out of Iraq and Afghanistan, but used them in 9/11 as part of his campaign.   It was the only point that had resonance with me, actually.

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#33 Shalamar

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 04:00 AM

Bush banned then, like the Clinton Administration before them AND the military!  It is NOT something he dreamed up over breakfast.

And I'm going to toss out a thought to you all...The president has a responisbility to protect 'information assets'...all too often those information assets are living breathing human beings.  If you toos them to the wolves you quickly find yourself with out any more information assets.  

The 911 image is a tiny flicker in a thirty second ad - it is not being shouted from the rooftop, much less bombarding us.- to leave it out would probably produced shouts of 911 is being ignored, forgotten and the President doesn't care...

One big MEH, on the whole uproar!
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#34 Gaiate

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 04:04 AM

Shal, Bush let the author of the Bush-praising "Bush at War" see the daily briefs he didn't let the commission see.  He's not protecting assets.

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#35 Rhea

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 02:58 PM

MuseZack, on Mar 6 2004, 08:10 PM, said:

That said, how incredibly stupid were these ads from a strictly tactical perspective?  Karl Rove and company had to know this would push the buttons of a lot of the 9/11 families, who haven't been shy about guarding what they see as their turf. 

So the big political story of the week was supposed to be the rollout of these inoffensive, image-burnishing ads which were supposed to remind voters of what they liked best about Bush.  Watch out, Democrats, I'm gonna smush you with my 150 million dollar warchest!  Instead, the story became outraged 9/11 families accusing Bush of political necrophilia toward their loved ones-- not exactly the image Rove wanted to sell with that 10 million dollar campaign.   Kerry barely needed to say a thing.  He could just stand back and let the angry families do his work for him. 

And the fact that the ad rollout coincided with Bush's stonewalling of the 9/11 commission just invited all-too-easy accusations of hypocricy.  Again, amateur hour from the re-election campaign people.
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#36 Anastashia

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 03:01 PM

Gaiate, on Mar 7 2004, 04:02 AM, said:

Shal, Bush let the author of the Bush-praising "Bush at War" see the daily briefs he didn't let the commission see.  He's not protecting assets.

--Te
Of course he is Te! I was one of the people that prepared input that in many cases eventually went into those briefs. Where do you think the information those of us preparing them used comes from? Assets! Those assets need to be protected. I can't say anything more on the issue. I feel myself walking on the edge of a line I'm not legally allowed to cross already.

I also doubt the people who do campaign advertising saw the info either.

Edit - In addition there's the whole issue of calling the President to testify. I believe there is some legal presedent that must be taken into consideration on this issue also.

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Edited by Anastashia, 07 March 2004 - 05:55 PM.

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#37 MuseZack

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 04:24 PM

And here's Newsweek on the matter:

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/4467791

"It's quite shocking to a number of Republicans to watch them stumble out of the block like this," said one veteran GOP consultant, who added that the big question in GOP circles is "Do they [the Bush-Cheney campaign] know how to spend" their huge budget?

Another less-publicized aspect of the ad flap: the use of paid actors—including two playing firefighters with fire hats and uniforms in what looks like a fire station. "Where the hell did they get those guys?" cracked Harold Schaitberger, president of the International Association of Fire Fighters, which has endorsed John Kerry, when he first saw the ads. (A union spokesman said the shots prompted jokes that the fire hats looked like the plastic hats "from a birthday party.") "There's many reasons not to use real firemen," retorted one Bush media adviser. "Mainly, its cheaper and quicker."
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#38 KRAD

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 05:57 PM

Two years ago, when he was calling for $50 billion in additional military aid for the war on terror, George W. Bush said, "I have no ambition whatsoever to use this as a political issue."

My, how times change.

Regardless of how one feels about this -- and I, for one, found the ad to be tacky and self-serving, which made it pretty standard for a political ad -- Zack's right that this is a phenomenal case of bad timing. The ad was of dubious taste to begin with, but even leaving that aside, to roll it out right after stonewalling the investigation was dumb. This on the heels of the call for a Constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages, which has served only to increase gay activism in this country, and you do gotta wonder what these guys have been smoking. (Then again, the 2000 campaign wasn't exactly what you'd call brilliantly run, either -- the Bushies were just lucky that Gore's campaign was even more inept.)


This amused me:

Quote

"There's many reasons not to use real firemen," retorted one Bush media adviser. "Mainly, its cheaper and quicker."

Yeah, and real firefighters are likely to tell you to go perform an antomical impossibility on yourself at your attempt to exploit their tragedy for political gain. :rolleyes:
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#39 Bad Wolf

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 06:20 PM

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"There's many reasons not to use real firemen," retorted one Bush media adviser. "Mainly, its cheaper and quicker."

I  have to tell you that what immediately came to mind when I saw this was a vision of one of the actors giving an interview and saying "I'm not a fireman, but I play one on t.v."

:wideeyed:
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#40 G1223

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Posted 07 March 2004 - 07:03 PM

Sorry this is a non issue. The fact that the democrats tried the using so called spontanius "Scripted" listings of "Moral outrages" by distant family members  Whom have supported Kerry before these "Moral Outrages" or have been supported bu a charity headed by his Wife's family (500 Million was her last estimated worth)

Another reason for itbeing a non issue is he has to say something for the reasons Rov has stated.

If not coomented on then it is seen that he is ashamed of his actions

If commented on then he's glory seeking.

So since this is a catch 22 situation Tell me oh so wise and wonderful Democrats what is he suppose to do? Besides be a starw man for your canidate to say what he wills and have no replies except gaffs for your friends in the media(Meaning branch of the Democratic  party) can use them on Tonight Show and other late night TV shows?
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