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October 20, 2004

FEARMONGERING on Social Security and the draft: William Safire thinks the Kerry campaign is looking desperate. Then again: "Ethicists, pundits and other goo-goos can all tut-tut about scare tactics, but the big question for political strategists is: do they work? We'll know in two weeks." There's then a rather odd segue to the Judith Miller case.

Read this column, too. The trouble with stuff like this is that if it does help Kerry win, it leaves him in a weak position. Kerry's platform consists of a few things he probably can't deliver on, like national health care, and of one big thing: not being George W. Bush. Neither is likely to wear well over the course of a term in office.

UPDATE: It seems the Kerry campaign has discovered the strategic uses of vaporware: "Now it turns out that some of the Kerry commercials are being written, edited, produced and put on satellites for the purpose of generating news articles. They have not actually aired on any network or local station -- except in reports about the Democrat's campaign."

As many tech companies have learned, this works best when you have cooperative folks in the press.