Most informed Americans have heard about anger management counseling. It is a widely prescribed therapy for those who lose their tempers uncontrollably in public or in private or while watching the Honorable Henry Waxman pretend to be the late Andrei Vyshinsky, prosecutor at the Moscow show trials. Well, during the past few days, I have been following the Honorable Jean-Francois Kerry’s controversy with Boone Pickens, and I believe I am in need of "laughter management counseling." Every time I think of this ponderous, stone-headed senator bellowing phony pieties, I suffer a dreadful agitation in the funny bone. I only hope that my health insurance is applicable.
As reported late last week, billionaire investor and environmentalist Boone Pickens, during an address at The American Spectator’s 40th anniversary gala, promised to pay $1 million to anyone who could find error in the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ads, which he helped bankroll in 2004. The ads were produced to expose the braggart Kerry’s incautious claims about his service during the Vietnam War — that would be the war Kerry participated in briefly before coming home and traducing his fellow comrades in arms with vicious lies and distortions before the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee. Remember his more recent claim that he supported our war in Iraq before he opposed it? Inconstancy is in his DNA.
Pickens is perplexed that the majority of Kerry’s fellow Swift boat pilots from Vietnam, who considered Lt. Kerry a ham and a fraud while serving with them and a louse when he maligned them, have been made out to be liars. In our political culture, polluted as it is by liberal bugaboos and shibboleths (we call it the Kultursmog ), "Swift boat" has become a hate term not unlike "McCarthyism." In the Kultursmog, it has come to mean destroying a person by misrepresenting the person’s record. But the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth did not misrepresent Kerry’s hoked-up record, not in their ads, one of which presented a tape of Kerry’s lurid testimony before the Senate. Pickens knows the ads were accurate, and he wants to demonstrate to the American people that they were. Send him the errors in the ads, and he will send you a cool million.
His challenge was not out in the media for more than a few hours than the Great Massachusetts Braggart responded with a letter to Pickens. Typically it is rude, beginning brusquely with "Mr. Pickens" — no "Dear Mr. Pickens" for Kerry. The letter is also delusional. Kerry writes as though, by acknowledging Pickens’ challenge, he is entitled to the $1 million. "While I am prepared to show they," Kerry writes of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, "lied on allegation after allegation, you have generously offered to pay one million dollars for just one thing that can be proven false. I am prepared to prove the lie beyond any reasonable doubt." In Kerry’s next sentence, he tells Pickens where to send the check. I kid thee not.
Kerry’s presumptuous letter has gotten plenty of attention in the media, but nowhere have I seen it pointed out that Kerry has offered absolutely no evidence that his Swift boat critics lied. In fact, he has yet to state what the critics’ errors might have been in their ads. Pickens responded immediately, politely asking to see the journal allegedly maintained by Kerry in Vietnam and "Your military record, specifically your service records for the years 1971-1978, and copies of all movies and tapes made during your service."
As I said earlier, Kerry was a shameless ham in Vietnam and he remains one. At this writing, Kerry has failed even to reply to Pickens, perhaps with good reason; Pickens ended his letter by asking Kerry to make a "commitment. If you cannot prove anything in the Swift Boat ads to be untrue … make a $1 million gift to the charity I am choosing — the Medal of Honor Foundation." Both men are very rich. Pickens made his fortune by years of brilliant investments. He is one of the world’s leading authorities on oil. Kerry made his fortune by marrying it twice — most recently to a woman who made her fortune similarly, through marriage.
Kerry has been whining about the rough treatment he received from his former comrades ever since they exposed him in the 2004 election. All the guff in his letter is typical of him: boastful, presumptuous, sophistical. Henceforth, I think I shall forgo teasing him about his Francophile pretensions by calling him Jean-Francois. Rather, I shall call him Crybaby Kerry. Moreover I shall start a clock on The American Spectator’s Web site and let it tick until Crybaby Kerry supplies Pickens with his Vietnam journal, his military records and proof that the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth lied in their ads. Oh, and let us keep the Crybaby Kerry clock ticking until he comes up with his $1 million for the Medal of Honor Foundation. Upon filing this column, my Crybaby Clock will begin ticking at www.Spectator.org. Now if only I could get my laughter under control.