Sept. 17, 2004 #01Political Satire/Commentary where satire is always commentary but commentary isn't always satire 
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60 Minutes Memo-Gate spawns new ad by Dan Rather-- Hi, I'm Dan Rather and I approved this message against George W. Bush.

            Hi, I'm Dan Rather with CBS and I approved this ad against George W. Bush.  So-what if we broadcast fraudulent documents claiming Bush shirked his duties as a member of the Texas Air National Guard?  Our highly reliable Kerry supporters have assured us the information in these fraudulent documents is true: That Bush got special treatment to get into the Air National Guard; that midway though his fifth year he transferred to an Alabama unit to take a job working in a political campaign, after which he failed to fly any more, failed to report for a  mandatory flight physical, and then failed to register with a new unit  when he transferred to Boston to  attend Harvard Business School.

            So-what if neither the Alabama unit nor the unit near Harvard had the kind of fighter he was qualified to fly?  So-what if in order to fly planes for either of those units would have  required him to re-enter active duty  for training requiring between one and two years?   So-what if it was routine in the Air National Guard, the Army  National Guard, the Army Reserves  and the Naval Reserves for units to make accommodations to members  relocating for employment and/or for educational purposes?  

            So-what if the widow and son of Bush's commanding officer say he admired, rather than  having disparaged, Bush's service?   So-what if there was no waiting list for  candidates to fly the highly dangerous fighter planes assigned to the Texas  Air National Guard?  So-what if "special  treatment" wasn't even needed to get  into the Texas Air National Guard in  contrast to the Army National Guard,  for which there was a long waiting list?

            So-what if the head of the Texas Air National Guard had retired 18 months before the date on which the fraudulent memo claims he was  pressuring Bush's immediate superior  to "sugarcoat" Bush's record?  So-what if Bush received an honorable discharge.  So-what if the first two years of his "Guard" service involved being on active duty in the Air Force training to fly, and flying, what John  McCain described as (and what Bush likewise knew to be) one of the most dangerous, accident-prone jet fighters we've ever had in our inventory?  

            So-what  if the statistical risk of death from flying  this plane in non-combat roles was in fact  higher than the statistical risk of death  from serving in a combat branch in  Vietnam?   So-what if the period Bush  served on Active Duty in the Air Force  was longer than the period John Kerry  served on active duty in Vietnam?  So-what if Bush never gave testimony in  the Senate falsely claiming that for our soldiers to commit atrocities and war crimes was the official policy of the  American military in Vietnam?  

            So what  if Bush never met with representatives of  Hanoi?  So-what if Bush never claimed  or implied that most American soldiers  committed atrocities in Vietnam?   So-what  if Bush never had any medals to pretend to throw away.  So-what if Bush never wrote a book disparaging America's military with a cover-picture mocking the statue of the marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima?   

            The only thing that matters is that CBS and I are solely responsible for the content of this ad, for which CBS sponsors and viewers are unwittingly paying.







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