Dick Morris Gives Crummy Debating Advice To Bush

Ken AshfordElection 2004Leave a Comment

. . . or good advice, depending on whether or not your want Bush to lose. Check this op-ed out.

UPDATE: Jesse at Pandagon got the same idea as I did a couple of hours later. Read it.

Here are some of Morris’ tips to Bush:

When Kerry says that homeland security is inadequate and that only 5 percent of the shipping containers are inspected or points out that thousands of pages of wire intercepts have not been translated . . .

. . . Bush should say: "It is very easy to pick on one aspect of our security approach and say it is flawed. But remember one basic fact: If I told you on Sept, 12, 2001 that there would be no further attacks on U.S. soil for the next three years, you’d have thought I was out of my mind. But there have been no attacks. If we’re inspecting 5 percent of containers, it’s the right 5 percent. Judge us on our record: We have kept America safe."

Kerry should respond: "It’s not one aspect, Mr. President. We can also talk about our borders themselves, which allow people to come in. We can also talk about our failure to secure nuclear and chemical facilities as targets. And many other things. And frankly, Mr. President, I don’t give you a pat on the back because you’ve only inspected 5% of containers coming into this country and there hasn’t been a terrorist attack here in 3 years. Because al Qaeda is known to be patient. Weapons and other terrorist materials snuck in last year might not be used until 3 years from now. Or hadn’t you considered that? Finally, I want to note that after the first WTC bombing, we were on notice that we were a target of terrorists. Clinton, working with our allies, managed for 7 years to keep the American homeland free from a terrorist attack. You ignored memos, and we got attacked. No pat on the back for you."

When Kerry says we shouldn’t have attacked Saddam because he wasn’t involved in the 9/11 conspiracy . . .

. . . Bush’s answer ought to be: "Japan attacked us at Pearl Harbor. Hitler had nothing to do with it. But FDR realized we needed to fight all fascism, not just the fascist regime that attacked us. Yes, Hitler made it easy on FDR by declaring war on us. But if he hadn’t, does anyone doubt that Roosevelt would have gone to war with Germany anyway?"

Kerry should respond: "In the days following the attack on 9/11, President Bush — to his credit — stood up and told the American people that the war against terror would be different than all other wars previously fought. And he was right. But what does he do when his failed plan to attack terrorism is exposed? He makes false analogies to 20th century wars, where the enemy was nation states, rather than the borderless cells that we faced today. Besides, President Bush’s response rests in a fctional world of alternate history — he relies on what Roosevelt would have done if Hitler hadn’t declared war on us. Well, Mr. President, we need someone who recognizes reality — present reality — and not historical what-if’s — if we are going to win the fight against a 21st century enemy. It’s time to come into the 21st century. We’re not living in a pre-9/11 world anymore, and certain not six decades pre-9/11."

When Kerry calls the war in Iraq a mistake and a diversion from the War on Terror . . .

. . . Bush should hit him between the eyes: "Al Qeada operatives are congregating in Iraq. We can kill them there before they can spread mayhem around the world. If we can hunt down those who would attack us in the caves of Pakistan and of Afghanistan and the streets of Fallujah and Baghdad, how is that a diversion from the War on Terror? It’s not. It is fundamental to success in that war."

Kerry should respond: "The attacks in Spain and, some would say, in Chechnya, show you to be a liar, or simply mislead, Mr. President. Studies show that terrorism has INCREASED throughout the word in 2003 — and that’s excluding what is happening in Iraq. Furthermore, almost every anti-terrorism expert outside your administration agree that our actions in Iraq have fomented anti-U.S. sentiment throughout the Middle East and elsewhere throughout the world. As a result, we are creating to breeds and regimes of anti-U.S. terrorists. It does no good to kill one terrorist and create five. In fact, it is counterproductive to the War on Terror, and — like your fiscal policy — future generations will pay."

And when Kerry accuses Bush of neglecting our allies . . .

. . . The president must set the record straight: "We have the single most important ally in the fight against terror: Pakistan is helping us hunt down terrorists who have escaped from Afghanistan. As to France, Germany and Russia, the evidence of the Oil-for-Food scandal suggests that no amount of diplomacy would have induced them to abandon a regime that was paying them vast sums of money to stay loyal."

Kerry should respond: "Any president who thinks we can win a GLOBAL war on terrorism with the help of Pakistan is dangerously naive to a fault about the potential reach and location of our enemy. Furthermore, we should remember that our allies in Europe and NATO were co-partners in the Cold War and the World Wars that preceded. There’s strength in numbers, and we need them for this new type of war as well as Pakistan. And remember, it was the internaitional community of nations that prevented Saddam from acquiring WMD in the 1990’s, including the very countries that this administration shows such contempt for. Remember the headline from "Le Monde" on 9/12/01? It said ‘We Are All Americans Today’. I ask you — how bad a President do you have to be able to take that sentiment and cause it to degenerate to the extent it has? Here’s a hint, Mr. President: The success of your worth as a world leader can be determined by looking behind you at how much of the world is actually willing to be lead by you. I dare say that on 9/12/01, it was virtually every free country in the world. And you blew it, sir."

If Kerry says we let bin Ladin escape . . .

. . . Bush has to say: "It’s easy to second-guess a specific military decision, but I leave those questions to the generals who are trained to make them. We may not have bin Laden, but he is running from cave to cave to cave and hasn’t been able to strike at us. And we do have Saddam. And we did get Khadafy to flip and support us. And we have the terrorists on the run."

Kerry should respond: "I am appalled that the commander-in-chief would blame the decision to abandon bin Laden on this country’s generals. That, to me, is the height of cowardice and disrespect. EVeryone knows that such a major and massive relocation of military resources and efforts would and should be made only by you, Mr. President. Furthermore, a moment ago you were invoking Roosevelt’s decision to fight Hitler in the wake of Pearl Harbor. Roosevelt ultimately made that decision, not his generals. Mr. President, please, accept responsibility for your own decisions. Isn’t that the first thing they teach you in 12-step programs?"

When Kerry criticizes any aspect of the war effort, like the shortage of body armor . . .

. . . The president should really let him have it. "It was not me, but you who voted against adequate intelligence funding, to abolish the CIA, to cut defense budgets and, ultimately, against the $87 billion for our efforts in Iraq. Those were your votes, not mine."

Kerry should respond: "Bush is again being deceptive here. When he says that I voted against adequate intelligence funding, he is talking about my vote in 1995. It was a bit of a scandal at the time, but what happened was that the intelligency agencies — one in particular, really — had secretly hoarded $1.5 billion in funds earmarked for, among other things, a satellite that they never built or launched or intended to build or launch. The agency had kept this money hidden from the Pentagon and the White House others in the intelligence community. I sought to get it back, slowly, incrementally, over the next five years, and was joined by many on both sides of the aisle who were upset at the misappropriation."

"President Bush is flat out lying when he says I want to abolish the CIA. The only talk about that came from Republican senators about a month ago, in response to the 9/11 Commission report. But the President has so many detractors — even within his own party — that I can see why he might be confused."

"As for my vote against the $87 billion, that was not because, as Bush misleadingly suggests, because I didn’t want to support the troops. It was because I thought we should be able to support the troops AND be fiscally responsible while doing it. President Bush thinks a president should have carte blanche; I do not. In fact, the way he has handled Iraq only proves precisely WHY one man should not be invested with such power. The President thinks that the patriotic thing for me to have done would be to send young men and women into harm’s way without reservation. Me? I think we should always have reservations — about the wisdom of what we are doing, about the consequences of what we are doing, and about the costs of what we are doing. That’s what comes from war experience. It’s not just about winning, but WHAT we are winning, and HOW we are winning."