Hypocrisy is the Greatest Luxury, Raise the Double-Standard

Since Newt Gingrich’s revolution of 1994 the Republican Party has been gaining popularity nationwide via a mix of hollow rhetoric and mastery of public relations. The rhetoric is basically two-fold; liberalism is bad because it relies on government beaurocracy to do things that are better done elsewhere – hence liberals are bad, and we (the R’s) are the polar opposite of liberals in that we believe in smaller government, more individual responsibility and military strength. On the surface these arguments have worked miracles, convincing people to vote R in election after election at all levels.

Now I am NOT accusing every person who is a registered Republican of being a hypocrite. Repeat. I am not accusing YOU of being a hypocrite. What I am saying is that what passes for conservatism among the majority of elected R’s in this country today is nothing of the sort. Many people on the right recognize this and have been vocally opposed to the big government, fiscally irresponsible policy that has come out of it. Unfortunately not very many of them have been willing to put their votes on the line when it counts. You see, winning is fun, it feels good, and so people are willing to vote for people who wear the same uniform as them yet by all accounts do nothing to further their real concerns.

There are innumerable examples of this occuring on an almost daily basis. The party that claims, all things being equal, to believe the mantra “keep your governement out of my business” continually does the opposite. They claim to respect the constitution yet try desperately to modify it in order to peer into our bedrooms. They claim vocally to value life yet they have no qualms frying people in “Old Sparky,” taking lives in war, or leaving people (in a social-darwinistic manner) to suffer and die from lack of care. They claim to respect the word of God yet at every turn choose to ignore “Judge not that ye be not judged.” They claim to desire fiscal responsibility but they can’t seem to balance a budget to save their lives. They claim to be for smaller government but they have presided over the largest growth in the Federal government since The New Deal.

I could go on and on but I will leave you with this one point. The most hypocritical piece of disinformation that has come out of the right in recent years is their faux military bravado. It is impossible to find a commentator on the right who has not used the “Democrats are soft on the military” line to further their image of military strength. Incredibly this line of mullarchy has been swallowed whole by the general public without so much as a question of its validity. The bottom line here is when their lives were on the line who put their money where their mouths were. I offer up the following list for your consumption, you be the judge, let the records speak for themselves.

DEMOCRATS

Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-’47; Medal of Honor, WWII.
Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V Purple Hearts.
John Edwards: did not serve.
Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star &Bronze Star, Vietnam.
Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-1953.
Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII, receiving the Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons.
Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars, and Soldier’s Medal.
Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit.
Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V.
Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
Chuck Robb: Vietnam
Howell Heflin: Silver Star
George McGovern: Silver Star &DFC during WWII.
Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received 311.
Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18 Clusters.
Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.
Wesley Clark: U.S. Army, 1966-2000, West Point, Vietnam, Purple Heart, and Silver Star. Retired 4-star general.
John Dingell: WWII vet
John Conyers: Army 1950-57, Korea

REPUBLICANS

Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
Tom Delay: did not serve.
Roy Blunt: did not serve.
Bill Frist: did not serve.
Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
George Pataki: did not serve.
Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
Rick Santorum: did not serve.
Trent Lott: did not serve.
Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, had more important things to do.
John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
Jeb Bush: did not serve.
Karl Rove: did not serve.
Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. “Bad knee.” The man who attacked Max Cleland’s patriotism.
Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
Vin Weber: did not serve.
Richard Perle: did not serve.
Douglas Feith: did not serve.
Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
Richard Shelby: did not serve.
Jon Kyl: did not serve.
Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
Christopher Cox: did not serve.
Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as aviator and flight instructor.
George W. Bush: six-year Nat’l Guard commitment (incomplete).
Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making movies.
Gerald Ford: Navy, WWII
Phil Gramm: did not serve.
John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart, Distinguished Flying Cross.
Bob Dole: an honorable veteran.
Chuck Hagel: two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, Vietnam.
Jeff Sessions: Army Reserves, 1973-1986
JC Watts: did not serve.
Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
G.H.W. Bush: Pilot in WWII. Shot down by the Japanese.
Tom Ridge: Bronze Star for Valor in Vietnam.
Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
Clarence Thomas: did not serve

Pundits and Preachers

Sean Hannity: did not serve.
Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a ‘pilonidal cyst.’)
Bill O’Reilly: did not serve.
Michael Savage: did not serve.
George Will: did not serve.
Chris Matthews: did not serve.
Paul Gigot: did not serve.
Bill Bennett: did not serve.
Pat Buchanan: did not serve.
Bill Kristol: did not serve.
Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
Michael Medved: did not serve.

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