Desperation and Deceit

Posted: Oct 22, 2004 12:00 AM

When seniors are about to lose their Social Security, pregnant women are about to be denied necessary health care, and the middle class is facing economic ?disaster? all to line the pockets of corporations and the wealthy, it?s that time of year again: Democrats stopping at nothing to win in November.

But the difference this year is that John Kerry is personally spewing the kinds of nonsense normally only voiced by the half-cocked likes of Rep. Maxine Waters. 

To listen to the Massachusetts liberal, Bush has a ?secret plan? for eliminating Social Security and reinstating the draft.  The ?plans? are so ?secret,? in fact, that only Kerry knows about them.

Most of Kerry?s attacks are battle-tested Democratic themes of the GOP sucker-punching seniors, children, women, and minorities in order to benefit well-off white males and their corporate cronies.  At least one prominent Kerry charge, though, sets a new low?a tough feat, indeed.

In recent days, Kerry has been vying for the youth vote?and possibly their parents??by ominously warning that re-electing Bush would create ?the great potential of a draft.?  He has repeated the charge at rally after rally.  Never mind that it is simply not true.  Not even close.  Yet that doesn?t stop Kerry.

Taking the oldest page from the Democratic hymnbook, Kerry is telling seniors that their Social Security checks will be slashed.  Ted Kennedy?s more conservative counterpart is fond of whipping up audiences by warning of a ?January surprise??should Bush be re-elected?that would result in seniors? Social Security benefits being cut almost in half.

Once again, not true.  Not even close. 

What Bush has proposed?and ran on four years ago?is allowing younger workers the option of diverting a small portion of their payroll taxes (roughly 2% of their income) into a personal account, along the lines of a 401(k).  No one in or near retirement would see any cut in benefits.

If John Kerry wants to criticize changing the nature of Social Security from social insurance whose retirement program greatly discriminates against blacks and Hispanics and converting it into a wealth-building tool, that?s fair game.  But his attacks on the entitlement are so outrageous that even the New York Times threw a red flag.

Kerry, however, is not content to scare voters merely about their finances.  He?s now claiming that Bush is bad for your health.

Making politics personal, Kerry told a Florida rally, ?You don?t have a prayer of getting a flu shot.?  In an interview on National Public Radio yesterday, the Democratic challenger managed to tie the flu vaccine to the war on terror, asking, ?If you can?t get flu vaccines to Americans, how are you going to protect them against bioterrorism??

(Playing an historical role reversal, running mate John Edwards is the positive pol on the trail, promising, ?We will stop juvenile diabetes, Parkinson?s, Alzheimer?s and other debilitating diseases... When John Kerry is president, people like Christopher Reeve are going to walk.?  Translation: George W. Bush may believe he is guided by God, but Kerry is God.)

The desperation in the Kerry campaign is palpable.  The latest attacks border on self-parody, the kind of stuff that could easily appear as-is in The Onion.  Exhibit A is a new Kerry campaign radio spot airing in Florida:

?George Bush and the Republicans are so busy kowtowing to drug companies, so busy giving them billions, helping them price-gouge, pumping up their profits, so busy selling us out, they can?t even get vaccines to keep pregnant women safe from the flu.?

Pregnant women?  Is Kerry serious? 

Kerry couldn?t possibly believe his own hype?and voters probably won?t either.