Thomas Sowell

 We all know that Senator John Kerry was in the Vietnam war. He repeatedly reminds us of it at every opportunity. He also repeats the great things he will accomplish when he becomes President of the United States. What he says very little about is what he has actually accomplished in the three decades in between.
That is very appropriate because he has accomplished very little in his 19 years in the Senate. Can you name a single piece of major legislation that has Senator Kerry's name on it? Don't be embarrassed if you can't because there is none.

 What was John Kerry doing before he became a Senator? He tells us that he was a prosecutor. What he does not mention is that he was also lieutenant governor when Michael Dukakis was governor of Massachusetts.

 This is the same Michael Dukakis who ran for President in 1988 while trying to run away from his liberal-left record, and who tried to cover up his typical liberal anti-military bias by being photographed in a tank. The picture looked so phony that it backfired.

 This is the same Michael Dukakis who came out of the Democratic convention with a double-digit lead over the elder George Bush in the polls -- until his liberal track record became public knowledge, including his allowing violent criminals weekend furloughs from prison.

 John Kerry's track record as the most liberal Senator from the country's most liberal state is likewise being covered up with images and rhetoric. Whether or not history will repeat itself on election day remains to be seen.

 It is considered an "attack" or "negative advertising" to tell people the plain truth that John Kerry's voting record in the Senate was ranked more liberal than that of Ted Kennedy. It was not Republicans who made these rankings but a liberal organization as well as a non-partisan research group.

 Like Dukakis back in 1988, the Kerry campaign is waving aside "labels" as irrelevant. But "irrelevant" is itself a label -- and one used to avoid confronting the question of whether the charge of being a liberal is true or false.

 Liberals are not some new and exotic species. They have been around for a long time and their positions are well known on issues ranging from racial quotas to military policy. That is why so much effort has gone into camouflaging those positions at the Democratic convention and in the Kerry campaign.

 What are those issues and what is the camouflage?

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

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