Ed Driscoll

The Ultimate Rope-A-Dope

On Friday, we wrote:

There’s a twinge of biased anger in this Knight Ridder piece titled, “Bush, Republicans reduce John Kerry to a punch line”, but let’s face it, the success of the convention may have been the ultimate rope-a-dope by President Bush.

Since January, Bush endured a year where he was beaten up over 30 year old phony AWOL charges. (And before the Swift Boat Vets raised the stakes, you can’t help but think they surfaced partially with the hopes of making Kerry look better in comparison, and shut down debate about his service record.) The first lady had disingenuously headlined articles written about her thoughts on gay marriage. That the gay marriage issue was brought up so forcefully in both Massachusetts and in San Francisco simultaneously (where it’s illegal, but that didn’t stop a newly elected mayor) in this election year was probably not a coincidence.

Then the partisan 9/11 Commission. Then Fahrenheit 9/11, and the endless anti-Bush tomes at bookstores, and endless attacks first by Howard Dean, then Al Gore, and then Senator Kerry.

The silence from the White House was brutal to endure for those of us who wanted to see the president fight back. But it paid off this week.

Stan Brown, a correspondent to Betsy Newmark’s Weblog explores that theory. I think he’s really onto something:

As Clinton told George Stephanopoulos, he believes in killing people when they are hurting you politically. In fact, Democrats are now furious with John Kerry because he didn