Let the Bush slime

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Let the Bush slime commence! Campaign Extra on the Bush campaign’s hideous new ad.

Special Late-Breaking Bush Slime Update: After having watched this ad, as opposed to the still shots, I have to say that I didn’t find it all that effective. I can’t point to any one thing; it’s just not that scary, not even that effective by the special standards used to evaluate lying right-wing slime and scare-mongering, a whole artform worthy of careful critical study.

In some ways actually, the piece typifies the administration. The entire ad is built around an entirely intentional and fairly transparent attempt to deceive viewers.

The centerpiece of the ad is the claim that “even after the first terrorist attack on America,” John Kerry tried to gut spending on intelligence.

Everything about the statement and the context is meant to communicate the impression that they mean after 9/11. But they don’t. They mean after the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. And even the alleged cuts they’re talking about are basically a lie too, for reasons you can see here.

That really does capture the whole Bush administration right there: trying to scare people by tricking them into believing something they know isn’t true.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not naive enough to believe that that kind of lie can’t be effective. I just don’t think it’s used all that effectively in this ad. The forest motif isn’t all that chilling — though it may appeal to certain aspects of the Bush hunter-gatherer mindset. And even the wolves aren’t as frightening as they might be. I’ll bet even my dog Simon — who’s now bulked up to about 7 pounds — could hold his own with these guys. At least for a while.

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