The Sliming of Politicians Continues

After four years of President Bush in office, why would his National Guard (search) service more than 30 years ago even be an issue? After 20 years of service in the Senate, why would John Kerry's Vietnam (search) protesting be an issue?

Both men should be evaluated on what they have done in office. This other stuff is just garbage thrown out there by people looking to hurt candidates with whom they disagree.

Now every one of us has made mistakes in our younger days. Most of us mature and our performance in life changes. To keep sliming politicians for what they might have done decades ago hurts the country. "Talking points" has said that the upcoming presidential race will be the dirtiest in the nation's history. Already rumors about the candidates are flying around the Internet. And that kind of stuff will continue because the media loves it. Any whiff of scandal means higher ratings and more circulation. So the press vultures can't get enough of character assassination.

I say enough's enough. It is grossly unfair to pound President Bush over his Guard service for which he has an honorable discharge. It's equally unfair to put Jane Fonda and John Kerry in the same category. In fact, Ms. Fonda should just keep quiet. She's not helping Kerry out with appearances like this.


JANE FONDA, ACTRESS: I don't even think I shook his hand. So the attempts to smear him by trying to connect the two of us is a dirty black propaganda tactic that I think the American people are fed up with.


Now both Kerry and Bush should say to the press that they'll answer questions about their public service and issues, and that's it. If both men made that deal, a lot of the slime would stop.

The upcoming presidential election is really about two different philosophies. These guys about as opposite as they could come. They're both flawed, as we all are, but there's a clear definition here. One's conservative, the other's a liberal. So your choice shouldn't be too hard. And the slime is totally unnecessary, except for the people who make money from it.

In the weeks to come, we'll spotlight some of those people, those villains. We want the slime out of the campaign.

And that's The Memo.

The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day

Harvard authorities have approved a new magazine on campus called "H-Bomb," a journal featuring nude photography and erotic writing. The editors stress that the subject matter will be literary and artistic. But of course.

But here's the problem: Do we really want to see Harvard students with no clothes on? I attended the school, and I can tell you that, in general, that's a pretty scary thought. And I believe Al Gore and Tommy Lee Jones will back me up, although Amy Brenneman may be the exception here.

As for the erotic writing part, don't you people have enough papers to do already? Could be ridiculous.

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