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Swift Boat Vs. 'Swift Boat'

Eric Boehlert has an important piece that we can only hope political reporters read. When a prominent group of New York City firefighters attacked Ru

Eric Boehlert has an important piece that we can only hope political reporters read.

When a prominent group of New York City firefighters attacked Rudy Giuliani's handling of the September 11 terrorist attacks, and when they posted a video online puncturing what they called the "urban legend of America's Mayor," the political press knew what to do -- it anointed the first responders as this election cycle's Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Newsweek, Time, MSNBC, the New York Daily News, and scores more all agreed that the firefighters were just like the Vietnam veterans who targeted the military service of Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) during the 2004 presidential run.

But that's the king of phony comparisons. And by making it, the press, once again, is letting the lying Swift Boat Vets off easy.

As Boehlert explained, "For the Beltway press, Swift Boat has simply become a catch-all phrase to describe coordinated, negative campaign attacks that try to take a candidate's perceived strength and turn it into a weakness." For those who saw what the right-wing lies did to tarnish the record of a war hero, we know the phrase means a lot more.

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