Flip-Flop Flim-Flam

Mother Jones is guilty of repeating Karl Rove's dirty spin by labelling Bush as a flip-flopper in an article by Professor Arthur Blaustein. The most important line in the essay is buried at the end, so I'll mention it first before the laundry list of flip-flops:

...the mass media, through incompetence and a herd mentality, have missed this defining and crucial story. Bush's flip-flopping had nothing to do with complexities or principle, and everything to do with political expediency. This is not a case of one or two isolated switches; it's a deliberate pattern of manipulation designed to deceive the American electorate. What we find behind the pattern, and the mask, is a candidate who lacks character, principles, and integrity.

Prescription drugs from Canada: For, then Against (Big campaign contributions from pharmaceutical corporations)
Assault weapons in our streets: Against, then For (Pandering to the NRA and gun manufacturers)
The creation of a homeland security agency: Against, then For (Public outcry and political expediency)
McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform: Against, then For (Unprincipled opportunism)
Nation-building: Against, then For (A double somersault to justify neocon invasion plans)
Steel tariffs: Against, then For, then Against (A free-trader becomes a protectionist to win votes in Pennsylvania and Ohio)
Arsenic in water: For, then Against (Public outcry...those darned scientists)
Mandatory caps on carbon dioxide: For, then Against (The power of the coal and power companies)
Outside investigation into WMD: Against, then For (Public outcry and world opinion)
WMD: We found them and then we didn't find them (Confusion, convenience and "flexibility")
Gay Marriage: First it's an issue for the states and then a federal issue (An opportunistic, red-meat, divisive wedge issue)
Osama bin Laden: In 2001 he was our No. 1 public enemy; in 2002, "I truly am not that concerned about him" (Failure to prosecute the real war against terror)
North Korea's nuclear threat: First it was extremely important; now it's not much of a threat (A parry to divert attention from misplaced priorities)
Cutting troops in Europe: Against, then For (Bad planning for the number of troops needed in Iraq and Afghanistan)
Immigration reform: For liberalization, then Against (A conflict between wooing the Hispanic vote and angering his nativist base)
AmeriCorps funding: For, then Against (A favorite target of congressional reactionaries)
Patriot Act II: For, then Against (The need to appear more moderate in the middle of an election; even angered Republican civil libertarians)
The 9/11 commission: Six flip-flops, Against and then For: 1) The creation of the commission; 2) the composition of the commission; 3) the extension to allow it to complete its work; 4) his testifying; 5) the testimony of his national security advisor; and finally 6) the implementation of the findings (Public outcry, particularly from the families of 9/11 victims and then commision members -- Republicans and Democrats)
The war in Iraq: At least nine different rationales as to why the U.S. invaded, and still counting (Reality catching up with fantasy)
The war in Iraq: "It will be a cakewalk," then, "It will be long and difficult." (Talking out of both sides of the mouth; depending upon audience)

It would have been nice if Blaustein supported all these allegations with objective evidence and not just sound-bite quotes. Naturally, you shouldn't believe everything you read. But you shouldn't believe anything a Republican wearing a seven-foot high sandal costume says (I love this picture).

Other reports in this vein with more quotes:
Bush rivals Kerry in 'flip-flop' decision-making
President Flip-Flop?

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