Who knew Republicans listened to Puffy Puff Daddy P. Diddy? His new $30 t-shirts, bearing the slogan "Vote or Die", seem to have directly influenced the Bush-Cheney (re?)-election effort, as our own David Sirota chronicles here with Judd Legum in the pages of The Nation. Another pitch smacked clear out of the park, as was this article in ITT, about what the Bush Administration actually did know before invading Iraq.
In their newest article, Sirota and Legum chronicle the depressing extent to which the Bush campaign has politicized fear. While the recent flap over Vice President Cheney's remark that "if we make the wrong choice then the danger is that we'll get hit again," was widely reported, other outrages have been undercovered, such as when the FDA's Acting Commissioner made the claim, backed up by hundreds of non-existent pages of evidence, that importing drugs from Canada might be a bad idea because "'cues from chatter' led him to believe Al Qaeda may try to attack Americans by contaminating imported prescription drugs."
Or how about the time The New Republic reported [article available to TNR subscribers here] that the White House was putting pressure on Pakistan to capture high-value al-Qaeda targets, if possible during the end of the Democratic Convention? The story was scoffed at, until, inevitably, it came true almost exactly as predicted. Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani's arrest was announced five days after the fact, at midnight Pakistani time but, conveniently, just a few hours before John Kerry's acceptance speech in the US.
Detailing every instance of Bush administration manipulation of current events for short-term political advantage is well beyond the scope of Sirota and Legum's article, of course. But at a certain point, and we've gotten well past that point, one has to stop and wonder how much more evidence the Left needs to amass in order to get our point across that this administration cares less about the safety and well-being of the American people, and more about their own hold on power, than any other administration since Nixon's. The comparison is not flattering for either party, and yet the race remains rather close, with Bush even in front at the moment. What has to happen? What more do people need to hear? Does the President need to come right out and say that he represents the vanguard of an invading alien army, bent on enslaving the whole human race to toil in their salt mines? Or even then, would 49% of the American voting public (or roughly 3% of the American public at large) say that the President's "strong leadership in times of change", coupled with their vague distrust of John Kerry for reasons they can't explain but probably have something to do with the fact that he threw his medals (or at least his ribbons, and possibly the medals of some other guy that asked him to, but nobody's really certain) over the White House fence after the Vietnam War and so clearly cannot now be trusted with the national security, compels them to vote for the impending alien overlord?