"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
It's not the first time Kerry has happened across his boonie hat for use as a campaign prop.
See this 1996 Boston Globeprofile of Kerry focusing on the Vietnam vets who featured prominently in his Senate campaign that year:
Sen. John F. Kerry had just entered the political fight of his life, so Chris Gregory knew it was time - again - to round up The Dog Hunters.
They responded, as they always have whenever Kerry has been in trouble. They are comrades of a unique sort: Like Kerry, they fought both in and against the Vietnam War. Protagonists in the central drama of their generation, their bond is unbreakable.
When Gregory and a dozen other Dog Hunters invited Kerry to dinner on the day he announced for reelection, their goal was to boost his spirits. Instead, he boosted theirs, showing up with a triumphant smile on his face and a Vietnam-era "boony" hat on his head. "Look what I found in my drawer!" Kerry exclaimed. "You can't get these anymore!"
Later in the piece, it is interesting to note how the reported genesis of the Dog Hunters name reflects an ongoing Kerry MO: placing military service front and center, and then, if and when that service is questioned by a rival, howling in indignation as if all veterans had been affronted:
During Kerry's first campaign for Senate in 1984, his opponent, US Rep. James Shannon, criticized Kerry for serving in Vietnam, then changing his mind about the war. When Kerry demanded an apology on behalf of veterans, Shannon said: "That dog won't hunt."
Incensed, Gregory and other veterans rallied to Kerry's side; the name they gave themselves was The Dog Hunters. They stand by him still.
The Kerry Spot at NRO recalls the Dog Hunters who thereafter hounded rival Jim Shannon in the '84 primary campaign. Kerry Spot reporter Jim Geraghty comments:
Kerry charged that Shannon had “impugned the service of veterans in that war by saying they are somehow dopes or wrong for going.” (He had not taken the more appropriate step of accusing them of war crimes, as John Kerry had done in 1971.)
* * *
Back in '84, a Brahmin's Brahmin, Elliot Richardson, was in the Senate race in Massachusetts, and when he got thoroughly waxed in the primary, it marked one of the last gasps of Yankee Mugwump Republicanism in the Bay State.
A 1984 Washington Postprofile stirs a bit of nostalgia: I stuffed envelopes for Richardson, whose mailing list laden with racket club dowagers pretty much reflected the tenor of his campaign, which ended with a drubbing by Reaganite conservative Ray Shamie in the primary.
It was felt at the time (though in hindsight it is by no means clear) that Richardson in a general election might have beaten then-Lt. Gov. John Kerry, who was then sounding his by-now familiar theme:
Kerry, known for an ego to match his 6-foot-4 height, projects confidence. "No one has a clue what Elliot stands for," he said in an interview. "The moment I get him into a debate, he'll fold . . . . I was in the leadership fighting the war while Elliot was defending the war in Cambodia. When he says he was secretary of defense, I can say, 'Listen, fella, I was in those rice paddies' . . . . If I were Elliot Richardson, I wouldn't want to run against me."