7/17/17

Shep snaps his shower cap

Shep Smith lost his mind temporarily, and actually told the truth over on Faux News the other day.




His rant has been described as a 'Cronkite moment,' in reference to Walter 'The Man America Trusts' Conkite's melt down after the Tet Offensive of 1968. Then, consummate hawk Cronkite somberly declared, in essence, that the war in Vietnam was lost (though at this moment, he hedged it a bit), and that we must now negotiate our way out of it.





The mantra among The Great Silent Majority (intermingled with, and often indistinguishable from The Moral Majority) had been and would continue and remains today to be that the war was lost because of the leftwing liberal press, the pinko long-haired (and therefore 'faggot') hippies, the un-American commie agitators and demonstrators, and so on.

The fact, however, was that the American press had largely been in lock-step with the lies being pumped out by the military, Congress, the Oval Office, and the Republican party. Cronkite referred to all this and these as the 'optimists' in his 'Cronkite moment.'

As the lies began to unravel, opposition to the war increased until Nixon was forced to accept (it passed 325–86 in the House, and 73–16 in the Senate), and sign into law, the Case-Church amendment in June 1973. That cut off all funding for direct US involvement in war effective at noon SEAsia time, on 15 August 1973.

I doubt that Smith's meltdown is the beginning of the end for our modern American nightmare, but the mere fact that a Fauxian anchor can finally see through the BS offers some hope. OTOH, Smith might shortly find himself working for MSNBC, co-hosting with Rachel Maddow.

Historical footnote: I was on my last tour Over There, on 15 August 1973, and we dropped the last B52 strike of the war, seconds before the noon deadline. The target was some patch of jungle in the northwestern part of Cambodia, part of the random 'area denial' patterns of attack that Congress found a bit disconcerting. The real tipper, however, was not just the increase in B52 bombardment in Cambodia, but the fiasco at Neak Long. That was the straw that broke the Congressional back.