Talk:John Kerry/Archive 9

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

New information coming out about Kerry's 4 month stay in Vietnam

I just looked into this today: Based on this information (and other which I have read), I have real problems with these final (2) sentences from the "Criticism" section:

"Though several people in the same unit with Kerry are part of SBVT, the men who served with Kerry on his boat regularly campaign with him. Almost all of them appeared at the 2004 Democratic National Convention; Drew Whitlow called the SBVT's claims "totally false." [8] ([9] ("

In my view, leaving those sentences in there, allows a pro-Kerry section-closing statement to remin un-rebutted or balanced. Not good. Rex071404 03:58, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

The article states the POV of the SBVT people. Then it states the POV of the veterans who disagree with SBVT. Are you saying that this section is biased because the "closing statement" is pro-Kerry? By that logic, the section would also be biased if the last word were given to SBVT. If anything, the article now gives SBVT more attention than it deserves. JamesMLane 05:41, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Kerry's 1st Purple Heart

If you review the above link and watch the brief video on it, which can also be found here: mms://

On this video, the orignal doctor who treated Kerry for his 1st Purple Heart says that Kerry lied about it. This is 1st hand information and is not hearsay along the lines of the "summarizd" military medical records which Kerry released. As you know, that summary was not prepared by the actual doctors who treateed Kerry's "wounds".

Now, I know this still bothers some people here, but the text regarding KErr'ys 1st woundd is not clear enough and needs to be more accurate. For us to wilfully assist KErry in keeping the details about his 1st wound obfuscated, is to. by default, adopt the Kerry-preferred viewpoint. That is not neutral and must change Rex071404 03:58, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

More on Kerry's 1st Purple Heart

I re-wrote that section like this:

On December 2, 1968, Kerry and his crew encountered Viet Cong forces on Cam Ranh Bay, and Kerry suffered a shrapnel wound in the left arm above the elbow from a grenade. Dr. Louis Letson treated Kerry by removing the shrapnel and applying Bacitracin disinfectant ointment. Kerry returned to duty the next day, conducting a regular Swift Boat patrol with a bandaged arm. It was for this injury that Kerry was awarded his first Purple Heart.

Changed word just now from "disinfectant" to "antibiotic" Rex071404 14:01, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Here's why:

  • 1) The point is made elsewhere in the article that the injury need no have been from a "enemy" grenade to get a Purple Heart. And, since there no proof of facts as to exactly what type of grenade (I see no proof of it being m-79), there is no reason to say that.

Grenade alone suffices.

  • 2) "Bacitracin" is an disinfecting, antibiotic ointment, not a dressing. "Dressing" a wound refers to the entire process of dealing with it, including wrapping it up. This is where the term "field dressing" comes from.
  • 3) Moving the "It was for" sentence to the end, prevents the sequence of facts from becoming disorded. He returned to duty beffore he got the Purple Heart. The medal came later and therefore it's the last fact in the series.

Rex071404 04:11, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Sounds good. I read or heard somewhere (maybe in this article, hehe I don't know, I'll have to check) that during the veitnam war, they were giving out purple hearts for any injury (or almost any injury). If this is the case, that guidelines were set, and loosely, then I would think any questions on whether Kerry deserved a purple heart would be clearly answered. So, I guess some investigation into that would be good. Oh, also I'd like to point out your change above conflicts with statements later on "Critics have questioned Kerry's first Purple Heart, asserting that the injury was much too minor to merit a citation. They point out that the only treatment Kerry received was bacitracin and a bandage, and that he returned to service immediately." Good night, it's late, I'll get back to this subject tomorrow, hehe. マイケル 04:20, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

Rex, I have no problem with this version, as it does not seek to characterize the wound beyond the facts. (Should be amended as someone pointed out that bacitran is _antibiotic_, assuming that's right.) Mbecker makes an interesting point. Did the doctor in fact _remove_ shrapnel? If so, the later criticism is not accurate which should be noted. If not, we should correct this version.Wolfman 07:12, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
The distressing fact which is not (out of my personal goal of trying to be gracious here) being injected into this sectionis that the other witnesses, including the Dr. who did the work, all seem to say that there was no "shrapnel" actually imbedded in the "wound" (I am talking 1st Purple Heart here). Rather, what actually happened is that kerry appeared at the aid station with a small scratch, holding the "schrapnel" in his hand. Nonethless, even if this is true, how does one tell people without sounding snrilly anti-Kerry?....
Having studied Kerry's public pronoucements for many years, I feel I actually have a good handle on him as a man. Here is what I think happened: Kerry, when 1st getting the Swift Boat billet, did not expect to see much in the way of getting injured. As such, and because he wanted -as the young, "see I can do it" man he then was- to show that he did his duty, he foolishly exaggerated his 1st "wound" to get a medal. This frankly, is a forggivable oversight. And more so - some of his next exploits were admirably brave.
The simple act of getting medical treatment (for a hostile fire injury) entitles one to a medal. See the Purple Heart criteria section. The article is quite clear that PH's were very common even for minor wounds. These medals are not something you request, they are automatic. Should he have _avoided_ necessary medical treatment, because he might get a PH? It seems pretty common sense to see the medic if you've taken a bit of shrapnel in the arm, why wouldn't you? Can you point out any place he "exaggerated" his wound?Wolfman 17:49, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
However, the manner in which Kerry still insists in over-portraying some of his Vietnam exploits is something which to me, calls into question his judgment and fitness. Ance since others may also fell as I do, they would need the information abut the wounds to draw their own conclusions.
As I have been saying all along, for us to simply "parrot" Kerry's veriosn of his service, is to in effect, "take sides" in a presidential election campaign. Doing that is POV and this is why I have been steadfast in trying to bring some perspective to the obviously pro-Kerry narrative which purports to be only a bland accoutn of his Swift Boat activities....
Rex071404 13:53, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Rex, since you are so concerned about it, and have drawn you own personal conclusions about Kerry on this matter, it's best that you don't edit this section, b/c even if you don't add any bias, people will see your changes as POV. I have not drawn any conclusions about Kerry's service, and I have no real love or hate for the guy in general. So, I will look over the articles you have linked to above about the matter, and attempt to make this section as NPOV as the supporting evidence warrents. マイケル 14:06, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)
I disagree - my edits themselves are impartial Rex071404 14:30, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Not to be snippy ( but I am going to be), but I think the past history of editing on this page shows that many people feel your edits are not impartial. Why not take Mbecker up on his offer? Lyellin 14:53, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)
I've found a statement from this article which seems to portray the critics whom Rex is talking about POV on the issue well:
"In the military, loyalty between commanders and the troops serving them is a two-way street. We have here a guy (Kerry) that with all of us in the field [in Vietnam] -- actually fighting the North Vietnamese -- came home and then falsely accused all of us of war crimes at a time when the people in uniform couldn't even respond," O'Neill said.
It seems to me that we clearly have here a group of people who are upset with the way Kerry acted as a anit-war activist, and are definitely politically motivated. It would server well to bring up the fact that these people oppose him as president, but it should also be said that they were angered by Kerry's anit-war actions during the war. マイケル 15:56, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

My initial conclusions

The only real proof I have been able to find on the subject is Kerry's medical record, which states "Shrapnel in left arm above elbow. Shrapnel removed and appl bacitracin dressing. Ret to Duty." Everything else is just hearsay, and should be characherized as such. As it currently stands, I think the Criticism section is NPOV. If you can find some proof behind your claims above Rex, then they would warrent inclusion, but so far, it's just unfounded information.

One thing I am a little concerned with though, is the first description of Kerry's first purple heart. It says "On December 2, 1968, Kerry and his crew encountered Viet Cong forces on Cam Ranh Bay, and Kerry suffered a shrapnel wound in the left arm above the elbow from a grenade." From the reports I have read, they were not sure who they were firing on, or who was firing back (if at all) or what Kerry was wounded by. This is the account from Kerry biographer Michael Kranish: At a beach that was known as a crossing area for enemy contraband traffic, Kerry’s crew spotted some people running from a sampan, a flat-bottomed boat, to a nearby shoreline, according to two men serving alongside Kerry that night, William Zaladonis and Patrick Runyon. When the Vietnamese refused to obey a call to stop, Kerry authorized firing to begin.

“I assume they fired back,” Zaladonis recalled in an interview. But neither he nor Runyon saw the source of the shrapnel that lodged in Kerry’s arm.

The Critics counter this arguement by citing a document from a doctor who said that in December 1968 he treated the wound for which Mr. Kerry received the first of his three Purple Hearts and that it probably resulted from an accident, not hostile fire.

“Some of his crew confided that they did not receive any fire from shore, but that Kerry had fired a mortar round at close range to some rocks on shore,” wrote the doctor, Louis Letson of Scottsboro, Ala., a member of the group. “The crewman thought that the injury was caused by a fragment ricocheting from that mortar round when it struck the rocks. That seemed to fit the injury which I treated.”

However, this is not enough to say that the doctor was right. I trust the account of the 2 crewman who were with Kerry more than the doctor who treated him. I question the truthfulness of the doctors statement since the account from Michael Kranish cites both of Kerry crewmates, and the doctors statement seems to contradict itself. It says "Some of his crew" in the first sentence. Then later is says "The crewman" which contradicts the first sentence which said Some (meaning more than one).

In any case, I'm going to rephrase this section to make it so that is sounds less like statement of truth, since I have been unable to find any valid source that shows Kerry was in fact wounded by a grenade, or that it was the Viet Cong they were fighting. マイケル 15:32, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

Ok, I've change it to "On December 2, 1968, while Kerry and his crew were on duty on Cam Ranh Bay, they spotted some people running from a boat, to a nearby shoreline, according to two men serving alongside Kerry that night, William Zaladonis and Patrick Runyon. When the Vietnamese refused to obey a call to stop, Kerry authorized firing to begin. Kerry suffered a shrapnel wound in the left arm above the elbow. The source of the shrapnel is unclear. Dr. Louis Letson treated Kerry by removing the shrapnel and applying Bacitracin antibiotic ointment. Kerry returned to duty the next day, conducting a regular Swift Boat patrol with a bandaged arm. It was for this injury that Kerry was awarded his first Purple Heart." Please Rex, bring to my attention any other sections that you think are POV, or any proof of your above statements. マイケル 15:43, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

Warm soaking

"Kerry was again wounded in this incident, for which he also received his third Purple Heart. His injuries included several shrapnel wounds in his left upper buttock, which were treated with antiseptic lotion and bandaged. He also suffered bruising and contusions from hitting the bulkhead, which was treated with warm soaking" What is warm soaking? A hot bath? Is this a medical term? It certainly doesn't sound like it! マイケル 16:29, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

Use of pictures

I’ve tried a different treatment of the pictures.

  • The arrival at Boston should be near where the article recounts his winning of the nomination.
  • The information about his only arrest shouldn’t be buried in a photo caption. I moved that subject to the article text and shortened the caption accordingly.
  • I thought the horizontal pile-up of pictures under the heading “Anti-Vietnam War activism (1970-1971)” looked horrible. I tried to match them to the appropriate portions of the text. (On my browser, at least, the three pictures under “Military service (1966-1970)” look OK. The only problem is that they somewhat obscure the first subheading. I've tried to counter that by inserting a couple line breaks, though without using HTML tags, having been warned off that method by the Wikipedia:Picture tutorial.) JamesMLane 16:47, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Picture and text about the Lexington demo

Neutrality, your latest edit puts this whole story into a very ungainly caption. The advice in Wikipedia:Captions is that captions should be "short (usually less than 3 sentences)" and "The text should be complete without the captions. Don't remove relevant information from the text just because it's in the caption." I have several problems with your version:

  • The information that Kerry was arrested would be important to some readers and shouldn't be buried in the caption.
  • The very long caption makes it hard for the page to display the photos sensibly. On my browser, the current version puts the Lexington photo opposite the beginning of the text about the demo at the Capitol, which is confusing. It creates an initial impression that Kerry was arrested in DC.
  • Your version is simply wrong. They didn't march from Concord to Boston (quite some hike) on the first day, then back to Lexington on the second day. The itinerary was: start in Concord on Friday, spend the night there; march to Lexington on Saturday, spend Saturday night there; march to Bunker Hill on Sunday, spend Sunday night there; on Monday, march on to Boston for the rally on the Common. However, I don't think an article about Kerry needs all this detail. I prefer one brief summary to put the whole protest in perspective, and then the information about the circumstances of Kerry's arrest.
  • Links in captions are problematic because some readers may miss them. If the link can conveniently be given in text, I think that's preferable, and there's no need to duplicate the link in the caption.

I'm restoring the information to the text and trimming the caption accordingly. JamesMLane 23:07, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

"What is this crap?"

The quote is from Lt. Larry Thrulow, PCF-53, and appears in Brinkley's Tour of Duty, page 260. I have the Kranish and Brinkley books out from the library, so if anyone needs a quote or something looked up, let me know. Gamaliel 19:49, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

  • I bought the Brinkley book from the bookstore, so I can help with any attribution problems.--Neutrality 21:43, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Regarding Rex's most recent removal of information regarding Kerry's first injury

Rex, please don't remove this information. It is in his official military record. If you would like to qualify the information by saying "According to his official military record..." That would be perfectly acceptable. However, it's not proper to simply delete the information because you disagree with it, and then expect others to not just revert your changes... I hope you understand that this is not the right way to settle a dispute. マイケル 21:39, Aug 5, 2004 (UTC)

  • The removal of shrapnel (first wound) is documented in Kerry's medical records. If you think this is in error, show why.
I have not been able to find any written material released by Kerry's campaign wherein the doctor who performed the procedure states he removed shrapnel. Until you provide a source, it should and must stay out. Rex071404 23:47, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • The released documents indicate that shrapnel was removed. If you like, we could use Mbeckers suggestion above stating the source.Wolfman 00:15, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • I don't rely mind moving the snope's link, though I do think it helps the reader to have it at that point. But you removed this link, while in another edit arguing that the VVAW x-ref needed to be linked in multiple places to help the reader. Why are these cases different? Let's apply some consistent reasoning.
Snopes belongs in the "online media" section because that's what it is, online media. It does not purort to be a news reference site. Rather, it's a "news-u-tainment" site. More entretainment than news. As for the link to the Kerry subpage, it has to be at the end off bboth of those praragraphs, because one paragrah talks about Medal Tossing and the other aabout VVAW, yet the sub page talsk about both. Rightly speaking, there should be a sub page for each, but since you guys lumped them both onto one page, both paragraphs need a pointer to it.Rex071404 23:47, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • The relevant issue is whether providing a link in the text is helpful to the reader, not what the link is to. I see no essential difference between the two cases.Wolfman 00:15, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • The "totally false" comment about SBVT applies to the comments we quote. If you want a qualifier, how about 'these claims' (or statements).Wolfman 21:45, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I think my latst tweak there, addresses that.Rex071404 23:47, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Here is proof that he did sustain a shrapnel injury [1]. A letter written by the doctor in question himself. Of course, in his letter, which he wrote recently, not back when the injury was sustained. So, while the doctors account is questionable, I'd say that if he was disputing the extent of Kerry's injury, which he is, he would clearly have said he hadn't sustained any injury if he indeed had not. However, this is still not the proof I was looking for. Interestingly I could not find the information regarding his first injury in his Personal Casualty Report. I'm going to look further for this, because it is supisious that it can not be found in this file. マイケル 00:28, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

This is from a letter I found here by Kerry's doctor in which he says "I have reviewed his military medical record, I am providing a summary of all medical activity during the time he was in the Navy."
"3 December 1968, U.S. Naval Support Facility Cam Rahn Bay RVN FPO. Shrapnel in left arm above elbow. Shrapnel removed and appl bacitracin dressing. Ret To Duty."
Mr. Kerry sustained a shrapnel injury in his left arm above his elbow. He was treated at the Cam Ranh Bay US naval support facility where the shrapnel was removed and the wound was treated with a topical Bacitracin antibiotic dressing. He was returned to duty following his treatment.
Now, this means I either haven't found the file in question where his doctor got that information, or something very fishy is going on. マイケル 00:33, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
The question I am raising is whether or not the "shrapnel" was still imbedded in Kerry's arm when he got to the aid station or had it already fallen out. If already out, it was not removed by the doctor.Rex071404 00:57, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Hmm, "shrapnel in left arm above elbow. Shrapnel removed." "shrapnel was removed" at the naval support facility. What's the question again? olderwiser 01:03, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
The doctor who wrote that "summarized" a report which he alone has supossedly seen, is Kerry's current physician, NOT the man who treated him for the "wound". The problems with that "summary" are 1) It's hearsay 2) It doesn't say WHO removed the "shrapnel". I suggest that Kerry did, just like I said above. However, since there is no actual PROOF as to who actually removed it, it's a presumption to say that the Dr. at the aid station did. Rex071404 01:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

I'm not certain the doctors statement is enough to warrent inclusion in the article. What would give us a definate answer here would be something in Kerry's service record, which there is not. So, after further research, I'm going to have to side with Rex on this point. There is not written record of his injury, even though he did recieve a purple heart for it. I think all of this information should be put in the article, and the reader should be left to draw their own conclusions.

  1. It should be stated that Kerry recieved a purple heart.
  2. His crewmates assertion that he was injured, but by what they do not know.
  3. The doctors statement that he was injured, and that he thought it could have been from a mortar round.
  4. That the Kerry campaign asserts that the doctor in question never had any contact with Kerry.
  5. That the Kerry campaign has not released any record that indicates he was treated for injury

Given all of the evidence, readers can make their own conclusions. マイケル 01:11, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

P.S. sorry for jumping to conclusions Rex, I made an incorrect assumption マイケル 01:14, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

Thank you, I wish Neutrality and Wolfman were as open to an honest review of the facts as you are. They keep reverting me even though the facts support my version of that paragraph over theirs and even though I've made adjustments to my text to to accomdate their concerns.Rex071404 01:23, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • Look, this is getting ridiculous. Why not just quote and attribute the account in the summary of the medical records (we can even link it). Now, there would normally be no reason to discuss it further. The reason it is an issue is because some of Kerry's critics are now claiming the wound was just a scratch (no embedded shrapnel). So, if you want to go through an exhaustive account of the evidence for and against the shrapnel being removed, the appropriate place is in the criticism section (because that is the only reason it is germane).
  • Personally, I doubt very much that the summary is inaccurate. There are obviously plenty of investigative reporters who would love nothing better than to find Kerry fudging something like this. Let the reporters ascertain the facts, and let us report what they've documented. Can anyone point to a mainstream press account that the medical records summary may be inaccurate?Wolfman 01:35, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Wolfman, please behave yourself

I understand that all of you have harbored animosity for each other. These things happen. However, I ask that everyone put those things aside to create an objective NPOV article. What I suggest, to hopefully make everyone happy, is that both parties work together on a section about the claims about Kerry's first wound. These sections should be as objective as possible. To ensure there objectiveness, each party should be encoraged to edit each others claims mersilessly :). I suggest we definitely include the points I outlined above. Once we have the two sides of the arguement characterized in an NPOV, objective way, we can merge them both in to the proper spot in the article. For now, lets start with this section on this page Talk:John Kerry/First Wound. I'll start things off. マイケル 01:43, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

First, AFAIK I haven't harbored animosities for anyone. I disagree with particular behaviors that seem very unwiki to me, such as an edit summary along the lines of The "Snopes" story is NOT a fuller "account" and is nothing but piling on pro-Kerry POV - belongs in the "online media" section and that is where it's going to stay! I will continue to disagree with such behaviors, but I'm trying to keep my eyes on the goal of creating a better article, not on any personal animosities.
As for my latest edit, it conveys some information about the Swift boats (which happens to be far more important than the stuff we've been arguing about). On the nonissues that have drawn so much heat, my approach has been to finesse them, especially those that are trivial. I think it's silly to include the name of the physician who did whatever he did. We didn't include the name of Kerry's oncologist. See my comments on Talk:John Kerry/First Wound. JamesMLane 02:37, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
As long as everyone is ok with that comprimise, I think it is the best idea. It doesn't make any assumptions, and leaves hearsay out of the article all together. I would have no problem with us linking to the other arguments in the bottom link section though. マイケル 02:44, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
That seems to be the best approach, rather than endlessly documenting each side of the issue of when exactly that piece of shrapnel came out. Gamaliel 02:54, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Mbecker, please do not accuse me of mis-behaving

It's ad hominem, and in my view unjustified. If you read the previous talk, I have carefully discussed each of my actions. You may not agree, but that does not make it mis-behaving. You might try for NPOV in the talk section as well, and the same goes for Rex, as well as me. The name calling is not productive.Wolfman 01:56, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Yes, you were misbehaving. You were making rude remarks, and that will only serve to escalate an already bad situation. I wasn't calling you names, but I do agree, that name calling should cease, I also hope everyone can act civilized here. I have only agreed with Rex because he is right. Kerry has not released as part of his military record, any record of the injury which lead to his first purple heart. Therefore, we can not make any statements on how he received the injury. However, there is nothing stopping us from presenting both sides of the argument presented regarding the circumstances surrounding his injury. If you want the article to be NPOV, then this is the way things must go. I'm not taking sides here, I'm just following the wikipedias own policy of NPOV. I'm probably one of the most liberal people you will meet, which accounted for my original error in believing there was in fact proof of the circumstances surrounding his injuries. The fact of the matter, is there is not proof. There are only personal accounts on both sides of the argument. Since such is the case, we should cover all personal accounts for both sides of the argument, and let the reader decide what they think is true if they wish to draw conclusions. That would be NPOV. マイケル 02:18, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
Oh, please spare me. I assume you are referring to the edit summaries. Am I the only person who has seen the Monty-Python the Holy Grail, the Black Knight scene? That's not rude, it's an attempt at humor to light a tense situation. Or are we required to check our personalities at the door? Kerry has in fact released his summary medical record. It is linked in the article. If you want to dispute that summary the proper place to do it is in the criticism section, because that's the source of the concern. I note that no press article has disputed the accuracy. I'm checking out of this part of the debate. If you come up with something you think is better in Talk, put it up for a vote.Wolfman 02:50, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Frankly, if you don't know what "hearsay" is, then you won't understand my previous full explaination about this. Rex071404 03:18, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Wolf, you don't seem to understand. The full mililtary report does in no place mention anything about his first injury, except that he got a purple heart for it. The other two injuries have reports, which as I hear was/is proper practice in the military. The summary however does mention the injury. The issue here is that this is a summary by his doctor. The problem being that he wasn't his doctor until after his service. The statement from the doctor claims it was from his military record, and I have read if came from a written note on something from his military record. But again, I have looked through every piece of Kerry's military record that is released on his campaign site, and there is not mention that I can find. If you can find it, please point it out. Until that point, there is no way of proving the arguement either way. So, I think we should follow JamesMLane's suggestion and just leave it at that, since there is no real proof either way. マイケル 03:20, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

Operation POW

Neutrality, it seems that all this attack and counterattack has already obscured my comment here about Operation POW. It was only a few hours ago but more stuff has intervened than some Talk pages see in their lifetimes.  :( It is simply not correct to say, as in your latest edit, that people marched from Concord to Boston on the first day. Please see Talk:John Kerry#Picture and text about the Lexington demo, above. My source is,%20Arthur.pdf especially pages 13-14. I'm restoring the earlier account. If you have a source supporting the very unlikely hypothesis of a one-day march from Concord to Boston, please let me know. JamesMLane 02:56, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

    • Sorry. It's hard to actually build a good article when you're under constant harrassment from Rex.--Neutrality 03:40, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
There goes Neutrality again - making intentionally hostile comments in an effort to stir up trouble Rex071404 03:44, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

He wasn't being hostile. He was commiserating with me. Trying to improve this article has been the most incredible hassle of my Wikipedia experience. There are important substantive improvements that should be made that all of us are being deflected from by your conduct. I realize that you think just about everyone else is at fault and you're the only blameless one. Some of us disagree. JamesMLane 03:49, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Please confine your joint commiserations to your own personal talk pages. This will help avoid misunderstandings. Rex071404 06:35, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Here is what the "1st medal" paragraph looks like now - and there is nothing wrong with it

On December 2, 1968, while Kerry and his crew were on duty on Cam Ranh Bay, they saw people running from a boat to a nearby shoreline, according to two crewmen who were patrolling with Kerry. When the Vietnamese refused to obey an order to stop running, Kerry ordered the crew to open fire. During this encounter, Kerry suffered a shrapnel wound in the left arm above the elbow. The shrapnel was removed and the wound treated with bacitracin. Kerry returned to duty the next day, conducting a regular SWIFT boat patrol. It was for this injury that Kerry was awarded his first Purple Heart.

Rex071404 03:27, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

I agree, that is fine. マイケル 03:41, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
Fine by me too. Please, let's not touch that paragraph for a while.Wolfman 04:03, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Now comes Wolfman, late to the party and contends that he now accepts one of the sections that he helped revert earlier this evening Rex071404 04:17, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Rex, that is emphatically not the version I reverted. If you had offered this initially, I would have been impressed at a constructive effort at NPOV.Wolfman 04:27, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
What a steaming pile - you have been going hog-wild reverting my every move for days Rex071404 04:40, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Please, lets ALL just let it go for now and get back to being productive? マイケル 04:23, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)


I just protected the page to stop yet another edit war. 172 03:55, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

This is an unmitigated disaster. The result of Rex's incessant harassment is that the page has been protected with a nutjob religious screed from an anon user included. Since I can't eliminate that rubbish or do anything else, I'll have to go to work on the Arbitratioin request immediately. I am totally out of patience. JamesMLane 03:59, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I will join JML. This is out of control.--Neutrality 04:06, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Yep. Lyellin 07:31, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
Guanaco took care of the religious lunacy (thanks!!!!) but the underlying problem remains. JamesMLane 04:10, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Please take notice that it's always the same - Neutrality and his friends such as Wolfman gang up on those who disagree with them. They immediately started jumping on my edits again today, even after I took 3 days of voluntarily and even after I proved a big point on the discussion page and got angreement form another very well informed user. Also, please note that Wolfman is constantly making snide comments and that neither of those two took time to dialog effectively today - all they did was revert revert revert Rex071404 04:12, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Rex, look at your snide comments in return? Let's stop ALL of them. No baseless accusing others of anything, or "doubting" others of anything - "If you are indeed Quaker", on my talk page, for instance, which is the same as above with Gamel. WOrk on the article, not on attacking others. And realize that all of us are human, and need a break from this incessant fighting. Some people use humor to do that. Lyellin 07:31, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

Miscellaneous controversies

I'll be trying to make certain edits, subject to the difficulties created by the constant edit conflicts, along these lines:

1. The Snopes reference is indeed a fuller account of Kerry’s Vietnam experience. It includes extensive quotations from Brinkley’s book. We could provide our readers with the same information by simply copying the quotations, but I think that would make the section too long and put too much emphasis on this aspect of Kerry’s career – the very thing that you (Rex) have so frequently complained about. In addition, I think there are significant fair use issues. The alternative that best serves the reader is to provide this link, and to provide it directly where it’s relevant. Please note that this is exactly what we do with the links so beloved by you to the articles about the arrest of Kerry’s brother. (Incidentally, as I’ve commented somewhere above, I strongly disapprove of edit summaries like The "Snopes" story is NOT a fuller "account" and is nothing but piling on pro-Kerry POV - belongs in the "online media" section and that is where it's going to stay!)
Snopes inclusion there is piling on POV in a section that is already tilted way in favor of Kerry. If you put Sonpes in there I want 10-20 lines of curent quotes from SBVT members who flat out accuse kerry of lying. The section is already too pro-Kerry - don;t start another war over snopes. Rex071404 05:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
2. Swift boats: Our usage on this with regard to capitalization was inconsistent. I wanted to explain what the things were and then standardize the reference. Although the Boston Globe often uses “swift boats”, and some sources use “Swift Boats”, by far the most common seems to be “Swift boats” (except, of course, that the B is capitalized when part of the name of a particular vessel, e.g. Swift Boat #94). No one or virtually no one uses “SWIFT boats.” Most acronyms are used as all caps, but some aren’t (e.g., Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus, which is usually written as Scuba or scuba and only occasionally as SCUBA). There’s also the obvious possibility that “Swift boat” is really a backronym – that Navy people were calling them Swift boats because, well, they’re swift, but then the bureaucratic mindset wouldn’t let that be the official name unless it could be fitted to some longer phrase. Anyway, given that the usage “SWIFT boat” is virtually nonexistent –- in fact, rejecting it seems to be one of the few points on which Swift [sic] Boat Veterans for Truth and Kerry’s supporters agree -– I think it would be very confusing to the reader for us to refer to SWIFT boats. The exception, of course, would be a direct quotation or reference to the title of a book, organization, etc., all of which should faithfully follow the original usage.
I won't make an issue of SWIFT vs Swift Rex071404 05:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
3. The Boston photo: I’ve seen no slightest basis for disputing the assertion that “All of Kerry's crew support his presidential bid.” If they weren’t all in that particular photo (I have no knowledge on that point), then it’s reasonable to say, as the current version has it, that “John Kerry and some of his crewmates from Vietnam arrive” etc. Nevertheless, it’s also reasonable to add “All of Kerry's crew support his presidential bid” to dispel any false impression that might be left by the “some of” reference. JamesMLane 04:52, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I will make an issue of "All of Kerry's crew support his presidential bid" for these reasons - 1) emphasizing 3rd party endorsements on this page is too political - it belongs on Kerry's campaign page 2) adding that to the caption is defacto POV. Captions are always more read than text - way, way, way too POV 3) I heard there is one who does not support 4) His former commander does not support him, if you put crew = yes in caption, must put former commander = no Rex071404 05:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Paragraphs documenting bullshit attacks from SBVT are okay, but mentioning that his crew supports him is too POV? Adding that to the caption of his crew is not POV, it's just common sense. Gamaliel 05:51, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
How about finessing the caption with "John Kerry and former Swiftboat crewmates from Vietnam arrive..." Then at the end of the SBVT section (near the 'totally false' quote) mention the support of all his living crewmates. That provides a NPOV balance with the SBVT. By the way, just saw in the news that McCain denounced SBVT & called on Bush to do the same. Bush's spokesman simply replied that Bush does not question Kerry's war record. Not sure if it's germane to the article, but is interesting in the context of this debate, nonetheless. Wolfman 06:16, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
"...the support of all his living crewmates." Better make that "all but one".
'In combat, eight of nine of them say, he was daring and unflinching, never tentative. The ninth, Stephen M. Gardner, an avowed Bush supporter, recently told [Douglas] Brinkley: "Whenever a firefight started he always pulled up stakes and got the hell out of Dodge."'[2]

22:37, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)

File:Kerry swift boat veterans.JPG
Kerry's former crewmates during the 2004 New Hampshire primary campaign.

Quick comments (I agree with most of what JML said above):

  1. There is no valid reason for removing the Snopes link.
  2. Agree on the swift boats. I think it should be "swift boat."
  3. All living members of Kerry's crew support his campaign (one died in 1997)
  4. what should be done with these photos?Neutrality 05:02, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Response to Rex on these controversies:
  1. The Snopes site is not POV. It simply includes more detail than is appropriate for this article. That includes detail supporting your idee fixe that Kerry’s wounds were minor. For example, from Snopes: "The injury was not serious —— Brinkley notes that Kerry went on a regular Swift boat patrol the next day with a bandage on his arm, and the Boston Globe quoted William Schachte, who oversaw the mission and went on to become a rear admiral, as recalling that 'It was not a very serious wound at all.'" Furthermore, we can see the source of much of the problem with this article in your comment “don;t start another war over snopes”. The Snopes link was in the article at the appropriate place. You moved it. When everyone else opines that it should remain with the discussion of Kerry’s Vietnam service, you admonish us not to start an edit war. By your lights, any change you make is just fine, while any change anyone else makes that you disagree with is “an edit war” or “vandalism” or some such. You must get it through your head that there are other people involved in this process, that they’re entitled to disagree with you, and that you have no power to insist that the article remain in the version you prefer unless and until you yourself are persuaded to change your mind.
  2. Thank you for not continuing to call for the novel usage “SWIFT boat.”
  3. On crew opinions, I agree with Gamaliel’s demonstration of the bias in your position. Wolfman’s proposed solution looks good to me, though I can’t really say for sure until I see it in the article, which right now I can’t, thanks to all this absurdity.
  4. The crew picture that Neutrality presents is interesting, but I don’t think we need two pics of the crew campaigning for Kerry, and the waterborne one is more interesting. JamesMLane 08:31, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Neutrality cheats again!

  • Just like the prior 3 times, Neutrality has snuck in his version just before the page is locked.
I accuse him of sweet talking various persons to be able to be ready with the last revert.

I accuse Neutrality of corrupting the process.

Several of us worked for hours to agree on a section and he just reverted it again!
Here again, is the work prodcut that Neutrality keeps deleting against consensus:

On December 2, 1968, while Kerry and his crew were on duty on Cam Ranh Bay, they saw people running from a boat to a nearby shoreline, according to two crewmen who were patrolling with Kerry. When the Vietnamese refused to obey an order to stop running, Kerry ordered the crew to open fire. During this encounter, Kerry suffered a shrapnel wound in the left arm above the elbow. The shrapnel was removed and the wound treated with bacitracin. Kerry returned to duty the next day, conducting a regular SWIFT boat patrol. It was for this injury that Kerry was awarded his first Purple Heart.:Rex071404 05:51, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

    • Keep talking like that, Rex, and you'll make an arbitration request quite easy.--Neutrality 05:55, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
        • Neutrality - you have beahved like a biased trouble maker - you cut Edit Sumary corners all the time. I see your fingerprints all over the trouble at George_W._Bush and I see the qty of material you are obvvously getting from the Kerry campaign. The only time you stop reverting me is when I outlast you, and then you still try it more later. Who says you get to contribute more to John Kerry rather than anyone one else? You have been fighting me for a week over the 1st Purple Heart. It was not until another user can along and corroborated the accuracy of my views that even Wolfman agreed that the way I have that section now (along with some help from others) is a good way to keep it. I remember the way you had it before "he's going to be the next JFK..." you might as well change your name to Cameron Kerry because your bent to cut corners on Kerry's behalf is about the same. I am not pleased with what you have been up to. Shame on you! Rex071404 06:06, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
          • I'm not even going to dignify you comments with a response.--Neutrality 14:23, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
        • Rex, this is another of your unwarranted personal attacks that is demonstrably false. The text that you say Neutrality deleted, somehow getting in just before the protection, is in fact in the version protected, and was unaffected by Neutrality's latest edits. You attack just about everyone involved in this article. It reminds me of the proud mother, watching her soldier son on parade with his new Army unit, who says, "Isn't that a shame. All those boys are out of step except Johnny." Please consider that many people have condemned your approach, that you've already been banned once, and that your conduct has attracted unfavorable comment from people not previously involved with the page. We can't all be paid agents of the Kerry campaign. I respectfully suggest that you should take these facts as indicating that your perspective might be just a wee bit off. While you consider that, efforts will be going forward to ban you or to block you from editing this page. JamesMLane 06:09, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
        • Rex, MBecker's views had nothing to do with my agreement to your proposed Purple Heart section. I actually _like_ your proposal. It's a lot less verbose than the previous one. It's factual. It doesn't editorialize. The only thing I'd change is to add somewhere that his arm was bandaged. If you had initially made that proposal, you never would have had any argument from me. If you make NPOV edits like that in the future, you'll have no argument from me. Cooperation really is possible, I'm not out to get you.
I also think you have made some valuable contributions in pointing out subtle pro-Kerry POV. It's probably easier for you to see, since you are clearly anti-Kerry. My objections are when I perceive you as actively trying to insert subtle anti-Kerry POV.Wolfman 06:28, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Just for the record, and because it may be relevant to any proceeding to ban Rex, the current text was not his proposal, it was mine. At one point the bandage was in there twice: the doctor put it on and Kerry wore it the next day. I intended to eliminate only the first reference. The next-to-last sentence should have read, "Kerry returned to duty the next day, conducting a regular Swift boat patrol with a bandaged arm." I just messed up. In addition, looking at it now in light of the next paragraph about free-fire zones and curfew, I believe the Cam Ranh Bay paragraph should begin, "On the night of December 2, 1968....[etc.]" JamesMLane 06:48, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

  • rex, my suggestion, refrain form editing John Kerry when its unprotected let other wikipedian cover it you seem to be keeting a bit off edge.--Ryan B. (Talk, contributions) 07:35, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)


A few queries from a Wiktionary contributor about "bacitracin" - I'd be glad to gain any useful information.

  • Is this word capitalised?
  • If so, is it a registered trademark?
  • What is the correct definition? There seems to be some dispute about it on this page.
  • Why does the link to "bacitracin" link to the Wiktionary page rather than a Wikipedia entry?

Thanks for any pointers anyone can provide. — Paul G 09:01, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

As everyone knows, "Bacitracin is an antibiotic polypeptide complex produced by bacillus subtilis and licheniformis. Commercial bacitracin is a mixture of at least nine bacitracins." Or so says (in the Notes to an incomprehensible chart). Your questions:
  • I've seen it both ways but lower case is more common than capitalized.
  • I don't think it's a trademark but I'm not sure. (At (last page), "Bacitracin" is given as the chemical name. There are a bunch of other names, possibly trademarks.)
  • The dispute here was about whether it's an antibiotic or an antiseptic, and the former description seems far more common, including in the Wiktionary definition.
  • Wikipedia doesn't want to duplicate Wiktionary. Therefore, articles are routinely deleted on grounds of "dicdef," i.e., if the supposed Wikipedia article is nothing more than a dictionary definition, dump it. There is no Wikipedia article on bacitracin and quite possibly never will be.
Now, for our purposes, maybe the link to Wiktionary doesn't really add anything. We could un-link it and just add the parenthetical "(an antibiotic)" after the term. JamesMLane 09:47, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Thanks, James. I'll update the Wiktionary article accordingly. — Paul G 10:29, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)

One last try

Ok, I've made the possibly foolish decision to unprotect the page. I'm hoping that we can all just get along and be productive here. I started working on this article, because I saw a clear need in several areas. I've ended up being dragged into a war-zone. Please remember, we are all striving towards the same goal here. I realize several editors have strong POV on this subject. Please check your POV's at the door. If YOU have a problem with a change someone else has made, talk about it on this talk page. Reverting does no good, for either side. It's not as though the changes are permanent. If it is agreed on this talk page that someone's changes are bad, then they will be reverted as a community choice. I do not wish for this stupid squabbling to continue. It is up to everyone involved here to act civil, and be responsible wikipedians. This means STOP THE REVERTING WARS. If you have a problem with a change, bring it up on this talk page first before starting a war. It will save us all a lot of trouble. Thank You. マイケル 14:52, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

Operation POW, revisited

(I'm putting this comment here because the previous "Operation POW" section, where it logically belongs, has already been shifted several screens up.) Neutrality, you keep rewriting this section to say or imply that people marched from Concord to Boston in one day. That's implausible on its face and is contrary to the source I cited. Do you have a basis for that assertion? Also, what purpose is served by including so much detail about this particular demonstration? The only reason it's notable is that Kerry was arrested, so I think we should give the circumstances of the arrest in Lexington, and leave out stuff like the picnic in Boston. JamesMLane 15:21, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

I have a real problem with this sentence (see below)

Re: "Iran-Contra hearings" section;

Here is the sentence: "One of the Bush administration figures criticized for his handling of BCCI was Robert Mueller who, as deputy attorney general, was critized for "dragged his heels" on the investigation."

This should be removed for these reasons:

  • There are many who support Kerry that were adversly involved in BCCI, including Ramsey Clark
  • The page is supposed to be about Kerry, it is not an expose on BCCI
  • The implication is that there is a continuity of nefarious behavior that Kerry and only Kerry can succeed in rooting out; as in 'current Bush's people are hangers on from the Inran/Contra probe era of Kerry - ergo it's a rationale for Kerry to win'
  • Many people were criticized for many things during BCCI scandal. It is a patent POV insert to use just the "dragging his heels" quote against someone who now serves under GWB.
  • If this sentence stays in, I am going to have to insist on a equally accusatory quote against someone on the Kerry side.
  • It implies that more than none Bush Amdin ffigure has been criticized for BCCI - in effect it tries to lay the blame for BCCI on this current admin which was not anywhere near being in power back then.
  • That sentence reeks of partisanship

Rex071404 16:16, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

There is no requirement, either in rules or in good sense, for every single statement to be "balanced" by the artificial inclusion of an "equally accusatory quote against someone on the Kerry side." The article about Watergate doesn't have to try to find a Democratic State Committee member somewhere who got pulled over for speeding. Each point should be judged on its merits as to whether it's important enough to be included.
In this particular case, I don't think the criticism of Mueller is of great importance, though I'd be willing to hear from people who think this point should stay in. What's more important, and what I would've added by now if we hadn't spent so much time on the shrapnel merry-go-round, is the case of Elliott Abrams. He wasn't just criticized for foot-dragging -- he was convicted of a felony for lying to Congress, and he told those lies to Kerry's committee. It's a significant aspect of the impact of the Iran-contra hearings. I'm going from memory on Abrams, though, and I won't include it until I have time to research it. JamesMLane 16:35, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)


The new information entered about the SBVT seems a little much for this article to me. While I think it is relavent to point out that they are in fact partisan, I don't know that it deserves 3 paragraphs in this article. There is a seperate article where most of those details can be laid out is there not? It's not our responsibility to defend Kerry from these people by going on and on about them in his article about it. That can be done in their own article. Just my opinion...

"Though several people in the same unit with Kerry are part of SBVT, the men who served with Kerry on his boat regularly campaign with him. All the members of Kerry's crew who are still living support his presidential bid. One of them, Drew Whitlow, called the SBVT's claims "totally false." [3][4]"

"Soon after Kerry was nominated, SBVT purchased television ads attacking him, claiming that he "lied to get his Bronze Star." The ads also featured men saying, "I served with John Kerry," although none of them ever served on Kerry's Swift boat. Republican Senator John McCain, a Bush supporter and a Vietnam veteran, called on the Bush campaign to repudiate the ads, but the campaign did not do so."

"Furthermore, SBVT is funded and administered by partisan operatives. The group was organized in spring of 2004, with the assistance of Merrie Spaeth, a Republican public relations executive from Houston whose late husband, Tex Lezar, ran for Texas lieutenant governor on George W. Bush's ticket in 1994. Its guiding spirit, John E. O'Neill -- the primary author of Unfit for Command -- was a partner in Lezar's law firm, and an early protégé of Nixon-era dirty trickster Charles Colson. Its Web site was put up courtesy of William Franke, a St. Louis businessman with longstanding ties to Attorney General John Ashcroft and the Missouri Republican Party. Its chief financiers, according to the group's last quarterly IRS filing, are Houston builder Bob J. Perry and the Crow family, both major Republican donors from Texas. [5] [6] [7]"

Also, I think the language is a little strong. マイケル 17:38, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps specific ties (the webmaster, etc.) can be moved to the SBVT article and we can merely say something like 'strong ties to republican figures and organizations'. I think O'Neill is important to mention as Nixon and Colson tried to set him up as their anti-Kerry in the 1970s. The TV ads are also important, as I have the feeling they'll be the center of a firestorm in the next few weeks. Gamaliel 17:51, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Yes, a lot of the detail on SBVT can usefully go in the SBVT article. Then (as with the VVAW x-ref) we should add a sentence like "for a fuller discussion of these issues see Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (Wikipedia)"Wolfman 17:58, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I don't think SBVT is very significant. In fact, their attack on Kerry is greatly overemphasized in the article as it now stands. We don't need to plug their book, for example. The article on George W. Bush doesn't reproduce the cover of any of the numerous anti-Bush books. I'd support something along these lines: In the "Criticism" section, leave in the stuff through and including Hibbard's attack on Kerry. Then add: "Also criticizing Kerry are over 200 other Vietnam Era veterans who, in 2004, established the group known as Swift Boat Veterans for Truth {SBVT). They have questioned Kerry's service record and his medals. Several people who were in the same unit with Kerry are part of SBVT, but all the members of Kerry's crew who are still living support his presidential bid." Then the question is whether the back-and-forth about their attacks should be incorporated into the SBVT article or separated in a separate article, that would be wikilinked in this passage. I'd favor the former because the SBVT article is short enough that it can reasonably accommodate the rest of what's now in the "Criticism" section.
If that view is widespread, then indeed much of the SBVT material should be moved JamesMLane 18:41, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Alright, since there seems to be a consensus on this, I'll start work on moving this all over. マイケル 18:57, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
Ok. I am implementing James' solution since 4 people have agreed and none opposed. If someone wants to refine the move of material, that's fine with me. This is just a first cut. In particular, the SBVT article is going to be a little rough for the moment, cause I'm just dumping in the cut material at the end; it's not horrible though.Wolfman 19:06, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Sorry, had forgotten to punch send on my note announcing the move before I did it. Hopefully no edit conflicts with MBecker. Feel free to modify; it's just a rough cut.Wolfman 19:11, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Rex states in an edit summary: “Link style Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is consistent with VVAW pointer to sub page method - do not change this link format again prior to full discussion - Thank you!”

Here’s the actual history. After some discussion about how to handle the SBVT’s criticism of Kerry, I suggested a particular framework in this edit, supra, in which I wrote in part:

I'd support something along these lines: In the "Criticism" section, leave in the stuff through and including Hibbard's attack on Kerry. Then add: "Also criticizing Kerry are over 200 other Vietnam Era veterans who, in 2004, established the group known as Swift Boat Veterans for Truth {SBVT). They have questioned Kerry's service record and his medals. Several people who were in the same unit with Kerry are part of SBVT, but all the members of Kerry's crew who are still living support his presidential bid." Then the question is whether the back-and-forth about their attacks should be incorporated into the SBVT article or separated in a separate article, that would be wikilinked in this passage. I'd favor the former because the SBVT article is short enough that it can reasonably accommodate the rest of what's now in the "Criticism" section.

Mbecker and Wolfman agreed, and Gamaliel had previously endorsed a change along these lines, so that change was made. Rex apparently wasn’t online at the time, but there’s no rule that every proposed change has to wait 24 or 48 hours so that everyone can comment on it. Rex was online sometime thereafter, when he made this revert (among others) to try to reinstate the plug (including cover photo) for the book attacking Kerry.

Therefore, this passage about SBVT, including the link, was expressly approved by everyone who commented on it. Rex made other changes to the passage without changing the link. Furthermore, it followed normal Wiki style for links: Wikilink a term the first time it appears in the article, and thereafter don’t repeat the link. Several hours later, however, Rex began the string of edits in which he repeatedly changed the normal Wiki style to one that suited him better, apparently because he really really liked that particular link and he wanted to urge readers to follow it.

A failure to object to a change soon after it's made doesn't bind anyone to accept it. Rex or anyone else can suggest improvements in this passage at any time. Nevertheless, there is no basis for asserting that the version Rex prefers (and which, so far as I can tell, only Rex prefers) must remain in place “prior to full discussion.” JamesMLane 00:00, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)

The current, re-affirmed views about Kerry, by his former commander, must be presented

See link here Dems are doing everything they can to discredit the SBVT. We are merely tools of that pro-Kerry view, if we bury the truth about SBVT on some sub-page. (Note -- that affidavit you link was just disavowed - Wolfman.)

Note to Wolfman: George Elliott reaffirmed his charge in a sworn, written, notarized affadavit, according to Reuters.[8]
"Elliott later issued another affidavit -- witnessed and notarized -- this time saying he was misquoted by the Globe and reaffirming his belief that Kerry has "not been honest about what happened in Vietnam."
"Elliott also wrote: 'Had I known the facts, I would not have recommended Kerry for the Silver Star for simply pursuing and dispatching a single wounded, fleeing Viet Cong.' "
Are we going to shrug this off as "unimportant." --Cecropia | Talk 04:42, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
So Elliott is a flip flopper? *grin*
Any mention of Elliott's opinion (and it should be mentioned, but at what length and whether here or in SBVT?) must note that he's changed his story at least three times (so far), as he's previously called the incident "an act of courage" and said he had "no regrets" about the award. "Had I known the facts"? What are these supposed new facts that caused him, the person who submitted the paperwork for that Silver Star, to change his mind? Gamaliel 05:50, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
He's been pretty explicit in what he meant: "Had I known the facts, I would not have recommended Kerry for the Silver Star for simply pursuing and dispatching a single wounded, fleeing Viet Cong."
  • And here's what Elliott said a few years ago: "But back in 1996, when Kerry was running for re-election in Massachusetts, Elliott came to Kerry's defense, saying at a press conference, "The fact that he chased armed enemies down is not something to be looked down on." and "As far as I was concerned, the war was won over there in that part for that period. And it was mainly won because of the bravado and the courage of the young officers that ran the boats, the SWIFT boats and the Coast Guard cutters and Sen. Kerry was no exception. He was among the finest of those," he said in 1996."[9]Wolfman 16:26, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • Point taken. But you also have to understand context and service loyalty. Kerry was not running then for President as a War Hero. Note that his 1996 praise is for all the commanders of those boats, in which he includes Kerry and praises his actions. I would have done the same at that time, in Elliott's position. I defended Gore in that same time frame against my friends (including my wife) who criticized his service as a "creampuff" assignment (which it was) because he did so much more than his political peers and, indeed, than most of my contemporaries in that era. Remember that Elliott is not a politician running for office. You can seek to impeach him, that's fair enough, but just as we can't assume that he's telling it exactly as it was and Kerry is dissembling, neither can we assume the reverse. -- Cecropia | Talk 17:02, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Is it important? Should it be in the main article? Of course, on two grounds: (1) Kerry is running as a war hero. In fact, he is running more as a war hero than a 20-year U.S. senator, and his ads trumpet "Silver Star"! So this is germane; (2) if it is so important to Kerry supporters that it be kept from the main article it must be important. Complaints that it uses up valuable space are ingenuous at best. Remember that you can argue that Elliott has an ax to grind, but unlike the person who broke the Bush DUI story he is not simply a party operative with some information, he is the man who actually recommended Kerry for the award. -- Cecropia | Talk 08:36, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
The key point here is whether he's retracted this or not. At the moment, that isn't clear, due to conflicting reports. If this is to go in the article at present, then it needs to reflect this.
Secondly, while we're on the topic, this makes for an interesting read, particularly in regard to its comments about O'Neill. Ambi 09:18, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I'm curious exactly what part of the Silver Star citation[10] (based on Elliott's report) he now possibly thinks was incorrect. And what new information leads him to this view. That would be a lot more compelling to have in the article than just saying he chnged his mind (multiple times).Wolfman 14:40, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

A significant number of witnesses in SBVT all assert that Kerry is a liar and a fraud on may parts off his service bio. These are important details that must be included in the main page at least to some degree. 19:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Rex (you forgot to log in), what specific NPOV points would you suggest for the main page that don't bury us in detail more appropriate to the SBVT article?Wolfman 19:21, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Rex, this is not any more appropriate for this article than saying a doctor removed shrapnel from Kerry's first wound. It's all still hearsay, and doesn't belong in an NPOV article. Please stick with NPOV content. Thank you. マイケル 20:11, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
IMO, two things have come out of these latest reports that need mentioning here - that John McCain is supporting him against the attacks on his record, and the veteran's retraction that Kerry posted. Ambi 00:23, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Both of those are now in the SBVT article, where we moved most of the SBVT discussion.Wolfman 00:27, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I agree with Wolfman that neither of these points is important enough on its own to merit inclusion in the article. They're important only as shedding light on the SBVT attacks on Kerry. (Bush's failure to repudiate the attack, as urged by McCain, might merit inclusion in the article on Bush's campaign.) JamesMLane 00:55, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

A proposal. From the preceding discussion & links, it is clear that Elliot has said a number of inconsistent things about Kerry, and reversed himself numerous times. A full and fair discussion would take maybe 2 or 3 paragraphs. As such, I think that the bulk of any such discussion belongs in SBVT. A sentence right by the SBVT link indicating Elliot currently disagrees with the Silver Star, but has reversed his position several times would be appropriate.Wolfman 18:44, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

As far as I can tell, he actually changed his position once, from Kerry "should" to "shouldn't" have been recommended for the Silver Star. The one-day apparent waffle is argued as a misquote. His current position, that he shouldn't have been recommended is under oath and notarized. However, I don't see any point in trying to reach a bottom line on this now, since this is being debated in the press, and anything we write is apt to be outdated in a few days. However, I have shortened the line "Elliott submitted Kerry for a Silver Star, about which he later said he had no "regrets or second thoughts" because, even if he said that, recent events make that a constructive lie without elaboration. -- Cecropia | Talk 18:53, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Just for the record when we revisit this issue: the Boston Globe stands by it's story that Elliot retracted & calls the quote "absolutely accurate". [11]Wolfman 23:16, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Newspapers almost always "stand by their stories," just as convicts "always maintain their innocence." Not saying that newspapers are equivalent to convicts (ummm .... not all the time anyway ;-)) just that it is what you expect them to say when challenged. See what evolves. -- Cecropia | Talk 02:04, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I'd bet quite a bit that the libel lawyers at the Globe vetted that quote of "absolutely accurate". But, true enough -- we'll see what happens. Or maybe I won't catch it, as I'll be driving x-country for the next week. Cheers, all.Wolfman 03:58, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
"If he said that"? Please see Kranish, pages 103-104: "...I ended up writing it up for a Silver Star, which is well deserved, and I have no regrets or second thoughts at all about that." Gamaliel 19:15, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Sorry my wording was unclear. I wasn't arguing he didn't say it; I meant that even if he spoke those exact words in the past, further events made them inappropriate to use unless they are qualified by later statements and events. Richard Nixon actually said (or I'm paraphrasing from memory): "You won't have Dick Nixon to kick around any more, because Gentlemen, this is my last press conference." Had that been the last word on the subject, history would have been a lot different.
Fair enough, Cecropia. So, besides your edit above, let's table this until the press has had a chance to toss it around for a week or two.Wolfman 19:18, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Snopes Link

Rex just cut the Snopes link with the comment "The Snopes link has got to stay out of the main article - it is conclusionary, POV and hearsay. It is NOT a neutral encylopedic style reference - calling it a "fuller account" is FALSE!"

I am not sure of the reasoning. Is your concern that we link to Snopes at all, or that we characterize the link as a "fuller account"?Wolfman 19:32, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

There are two problems using where it is used (and from where I have removed it several times) - 1) It is clearly hearsay, therefor to call it a "fuller account" is to put the Wikipedia impimature on it as being incontestably accurate. Also, because it is posed a a "debunker", the fact we link to it with that pronouncement suggest we agree with it's conclusions. I for one do not. 2) No harm is done to the overall NPOV of the article if it is kerpt in the Online MEdia section, wher I say it belongs.
If you want to have a "fuller account" link, why don't we link to the new-anti Kerry book which has a whole chapter posted online. See - now you get my point, calling a POV link a "fuller account" is bad a practice.
Also, by definiiton, Snopes debunks "urban legends". However, by no means can the contmporaneous criticisms of Kerr'ys service history be dismissed a merely a legend. There are a large number of reputable people who have recenlty signed affidavits containing very specific assertions of fact agaaisnt Kerry. This is a much high level of proof than a "legend" (such as the lady who dried hre poodle in the microwave, etc.) Implicit in the use of that link as a "fuller account" is the message that we at his Wiki consider the debate about Kerry's medals to a) be only a "legend" and b) concluded favorably towards KErry. Neither of these things are true and to imply them is way too much pro-Kerry POV.
Rex071404 19:51, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Personally, I would have no problem moving the Snopes link to the criticism section, because it presents itself as debunking criticism. I am not hung up on the phrase "fuller account". What's the link to the ant-Kerry book? It may also be appropriate for the criticism section.Wolfman 20:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
One of the SBVT accusers has already retracted his affidavit. [12] I suspect we'll see more of this. Gamaliel 20:10, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Rex, please provide links to back up your statements; the Snopes article that you are trying to remove the link to is well-researched and provides extensive citations from many sources. To discount it because it disagrees with your POV is irresponsible. Samboy 20:26, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I should also note that the sources Snopes is using are all linked to or employed in this article. Like Snopes, wiki editors have extensively used information from Michael Kranish of the Boston Globe and Douglas Brinkley's Tour of Duty. I don't see the problem here. Gamaliel 21:08, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Snopes is a legitimate source of information for Wikipedia; I have used them to refute an urban legend that was on the page for sexual intercourse, for example. I reverted this anonymous edit because it wasn't discussed here. Samboy 19:38, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Snopes is highly regarded.--Neutrality 20:14, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Snopes is highly regarded for what they do, which is mainly debunking of urban legends, but you have to be cautious about their area of competence. Their articles on Kerry are not false, as far as I can see, but they're selective. They took one line out of an internet email (that Kerry's medals were "fishy") and then, without ever engaging the question of what a qualification for a medal was (say, by comparing Kerry's actions to other that have gotten the same award) they publish a long piece on how brave he was. Remember that POV is a "crime" of omission as well as commission, and selective choice of facts.
Put another way, would we accept a Consumer Reports evaluation of who should be President? CR did begin to get involved in political issues a few years ago and mostly rightly gave it up. Quote CR for the best toaster, quote Snopes for whether Kerry is liable to get bitten by alligator when he sits on the can, and quote primary or appropriate sources for political issues.
Cecropia forgot to sign the above two paragraphs. Samboy 21:22, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Evaluation of who should be President involves judgment, and I agree that there's no particular reason to direct readers to the judgment of Consumer Reports on that subject. The linked page here involves assembling evidence, such as the quotations from Brinkley. We're not directing readers to the page so that they can get the benefit of Snopes's political judgment. We're saying only that we trust Snopes not to have distorted (or outright fabricated) the quotations. Snopes has certainly earned more trust in that regard than any of the partisan pro- or anti-Kerry websites. JamesMLane 23:00, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Only time arrested

I removed this line:
This was the only time Kerry was arrested.
This is a gratuitous comment. It answers a question that hasn't been asked. If we can supply a responsible source claiming he was arrested some other time than this would be appropriate, but then we would have to show why the "other" report was false.
The fuss of Bush's DUI was allegedly that he lied about having been arrested. There is no comment on the Bush page "This was the only time Bush was arrested." -- Cecropia | Talk 20:28, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I don't think it is gratuitous; I think it's informative. The sentence's purpose is to tell the reader that Kerry was not arrested again — which is useful information, because he very well might have gotten arrested at another demonstration again. The sentence tells the reader that this was in fact the only time Kerry was arrested at a protest.--Neutrality 21:00, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
One would think that, if Kerry were arrested more than once, that would be positively mentioned in the article. Many people who testify before Congress do so multiple times. Do we have to qualify the mention of Kerry's testimony with "That was the only time Kerry testified for the VVAW before the Senate"? -- Cecropia | Talk 01:01, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Neutrality's right, according to information theory. In order to have an informationally balanced article, the lenght of each message in the article should be proportional to the amount of information in it, which is equal to the additive inverse of the log of the probability of the event described. ( l(m) = -lnp(e) ) Thus, a statement describing a more improbable event is more informative than a statement describing a less improbable event. If an information/letter threshold was set for inclusion in an article, and was the same for both the kerry and bush articles, then there are three possibilities for a given statement that is true for both of them, but more improbable for one than the other:

  1. the statement is in neither article
  2. the statement is in the article in which the event is less probable, but not the one that it is more probable
  3. the statement is in both articles

I concur that it is more likely for a protester to get arrested more than once if they are arrested at least once than it is for a DUI to get arrested more than once if they are arrested at least once. Given this, number 2 would be inclusion of the statement on the kerry page, and not on the bush page. my assesment of where the threshold is on the two pages inclines me to believe that either option 2 or 3 is appropriate in this case. Kevin Baas | talk 22:15, 2004 Aug 6 (UTC)

So now we're using information theory for a political decision? Let's allow that your theory is accurate, please point me to (1) the research that shows an arrested protestor is more likely to be arrested again than a DUI is to be arrested again and (2) demonstrate that an ordinary person reading these articles is apt to expect that Kerry would have been arrested again, therefore must be positively told he was not; but that the same reader would assume that Bush was never again arrested, therefore shouldn't be told he was not. -- Cecropia | Talk 01:01, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I'll admit that the stuff about information theory went waaaaay over my head. What I know is that lots of activists in that period had multiple arrests. (There were one or two occasions when someone expressed surprise to me that I had never been arrested, given the circles I was moving in.) When we cite multiple demos, and include a pic of Kerry in custody, I think a certain number of readers, especially those familiar with that milieu, might form a vague impression of multiple arrests. It's reasonable to rule that out. We might do so more tersely, though, by working it into the text. I won't try to edit in the article, because the whole Operation POW thing needs a major overhaul and I'm waiting for Neutrality to answer my comments. I'd envision something along the lines of: "The second night of the march was the occasion for Kerry's only arrest. When the participants tried to bivouac on the village green in Lexington, hundreds of them, veterans and townspeople, were arrested. Kerry spent the night at the Lexington Public Works Garage and later paid a $5 fine." That, after all, explains why we're talking about this one particular demo, out of the many that he attended. JamesMLane 02:22, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I agree it should be mentioned for precisely these reasons. Multiple arrests for anti-Vietnam activists were quite common. I don't particularly care how it comes up, in text or caption, but it should be mentioned to dispel the possible impression of more than one. Gamaliel 02:28, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Page protection

The page has been protected again. has also been blocked for vandalism (This seems to be the same user blocked yesterday by Guanaco for his/her conduct on this page.) Now that this user has been blocked for 24 hrs, another admin can unprotect this page if he/she so chooses. 172 22:11, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
But why protect the page? Neutrality 22:13, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
It was more than a two-way edit war. also made an ostensibly bad-faith edit. This was the sole edit of this user, though, so blocking this IP is probably inappropriate for now. I'll unprotect the page, but my hunch is that 128 will be returning. 172 22:17, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

The hospital in which Kerry was born is an irrelevant detail IMO. --Hemanshu 02:38, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Kerry's first memory, at age three, is of holding his crying mother's hand while they walked through the broken glass and rubble of her childhood home in Saint-Briac, France.

Interesting. What was his second memory? This must be something he said and we are stating it as a fact like we scanned his brain. --Hemanshu 02:46, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

It used to say "Kerry has stated that his first memory was ...". That seemed a bit silly & verbose to me, because how else could we possibly know his first memory. Of course he said it, or we wouldn't know would we. So, I edited out the "has stated". If you think this introduced some ambiguity or reduced clarity, by all means change it back.Wolfman 07:05, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

isn't Family Background information a bit excessive? Have we dedicated so much space for the family background of any other person? I must admit I don't know how to make it more concise. --Hemanshu 02:48, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Kerry occupied his time there racing his cousins on bicycles and challenging relatives to games of kick the can.

How is this relevant to anything? Another unnecessary detail. --Hemanshu 02:51, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

We cut a lot of details such as this before (partially at my instigation). Someone pointed out that doing so made the article much drier and less of a good read. So, since the only argument against such details is they are 'unnecessary', we put them back.Wolfman 07:10, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I don't think that's what that comment meant, IIRC, or at least that's not how I read it. I think the point was that we shouldn't chop out all that stuff, like the cookie story. But much of this really should go. Ambi 07:39, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

On Christmas Day, Kerry said goodbye to his relatives; on January 3, 1967, Kerry began a year of training for duty at a ten-week Officer Damage Control Course at the Naval Schools Command on Treasure Island, California.

Was he weeping when he said goodbye? How dramatic. --Hemanshu 03:11, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

"John Kerry's tour of duty as commander of a Swift boat"

We could sell this as a book - "The adventures of John Kerry". would be helpful to read to children at bedtime. --Hemanshu 03:30, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Hemanshu, people are trying to write a serious article here. If you have a problem with something, make a serious suggestion, or fix it. Your little jokes aren't helping anything, especially since things have not been well with this article for some time. Now, if you'd like to help out, please do, but your smart comments are unneeded and unwelcome. Thank You. マイケル 03:45, Aug 7, 2004 (UTC)
Whoever is trying to write an article isn't succeeding. It is more the story of John Kerry rather than an encyclopedia article about him. Did you write this article? What makes you so sensitive to criticism of it? What harm exactly have my comments done? --Hemanshu 04:22, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
You must understand that over the last two weeks editing of this article has been rather contentious and many unkind things have been said, mostly by one user determined to be a monkey wrench. Your flippant remarks have done no harm, of course, but you must realize that we're all a bit on edge over this, and so your tone may cause some to think that you have the potential to be another troublesome character. Of course, I'm not accusing you of anything, but please keep these things in mind. Gamaliel 04:33, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I don't see what was offensive about his comments. They seem to me to be quite accurate criticisms of this article. Ambi 03:53, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
HEY, in the spirit of trying to be helpful here, I tidied the first TWO pars under the subhead ===Enlistment, training, and tour of duty on the USS Gridley=== Should I persist in the rest of the aticle, or would my efforts simply be reverted? Moriori 03:56, Aug 7, 2004 (UTC)
I agree with several of Hemanshu's points, but I also agree with Mbecker's criticism of Hemanshu's tone. I admit that my capacity to appreciate humor has been diminished because of what this article has already gone through. Hemanshu, just be aware that in editing this article, you're entering the Wikipedia equivalent of the Mekong Delta on a dark night in 1969. JamesMLane 04:01, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Alone. In a Viet Cong-controlled area. Neutrality 04:19, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
If you feel some of the writing exhibits pro-Kerry POV, by all means jump in and help neutralize it. Please keep in mind that adding subtle anti-Kerry POV to balance subtle pro-Kerry POV does not result in a neutral article. Not that you have done that H., but this is (in my view) the source of a lot of the recent stress.Wolfman 07:42, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Also in this "Swift boat" section there is this odd paragraph:

"It's the reason he gets so angry when his patriotism is challenged. It was a traumatic experience that's still with him, and he went through it for his country." It affects the way Kerry lives his life every day, the source said, since "he knows he very well would not be alive today had he not taken the life of another man [he] never ever met."

Which seems to be an unattributed quote and makes little sense as written, in addition to not adding much information or insight IMO. Perhaps someone working on the article can fix or remove this? Jgm 17:24, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Yes, I asked about this a while back. The link provided doesn't contain the quote. I'm guessing that this is left over kruft from some previous editing. If no one can source it, or place it in context, it should be cut.Wolfman 17:41, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I personally think it adds to the article. It's probably from one of the books; Neutrality and I can look for it. We'll have to start footnoting quotes from Kranish and Brinkley, as we've been having this attribution problem over and over again. Gamaliel 19:18, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I think the first draft of many of the sections of this article was taken pretty heavily from the Boston Globe, possibly to the point of copyvio. For example, I found similar problems with quotations in sections that I revised. Our rewriting along the way has fixed up other sections, but this one probably deserves a fairly thorough rewrite, not just proper attribution of the quotation. JamesMLane 23:37, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Copyright question

Regarding link recently posted to the freerepublic forum. The link goes to a several page excerpt from the book -- far beyond fair use. Leaving aside from whether this paragraph is an appropriate addition to the Kerry article, is linking to this legitimate if it is a copyright violation? If it is not a copyright violation, could we perhaps link it off the author's page. Or, are we going to start linking things off Democratic Underground as well?Wolfman 00:48, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

These parties were said to be involved in shipping cocaine and marijuana to the United States, with the profits from the sales going to pay for the Contra weaponry . Some published reports, including "The Secret Life of Bill Clinton" by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard [(], indicate that drugs were smuggled in via the Mena, Arkansas airport. Reports on this topic have pointed the finger at well known Republicans and Democrats alike.
I might agree that the link source could be improved. Hiowever, referring to that book is I feel, valid. Also appropriate, so as to maintain neutral POV is this sentence which I orginally included: Reports on this topic have pointed the finger at well known Republicans and Democrats alike. This is a very true fact and one that helps make sure we are not implying that Kerry et, al were rooting out only detail about Republican miscues. Rex071404 00:57, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
No way. No way is this crap going in the article. Kerry did not investigate Bill Clinton, this has nothing to do with balance, it's some crank smear against the former president which has nothing to do with Kerry or Kerry's congressional work. If you are sincere about "balance" and want to talk about Democrats investigated by Kerry during the course of his Iran-Contra investigations, then research Carter's defense secretary Clark Clifford. If you aren't, then you can just throw up random, irrelevant Freeper rants. Gamaliel 01:02, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
So then you do understand my frustration with the continued inclusion of this: "One of the Bush administration figures criticized for his handling of BCCI was Robert Mueller who, as deputy attorney general, was critized for "dragged his heels" on the investigation."? there is NO reason that this sentence needs to be in the article. It adds very little and it si WAY TOO POV. Rex071404 01:12, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
You'll have to argue with someone else about that. I don't know enough about Mueller's involvement yet to make a judgement one way or the other. Gamaliel 01:17, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I don't know either, particularly his specific relationship to the Kerry investigation. For example, did Kerry say "dragged his heels"? Was Muller a target of the investigation? Or was he obstructing the investigation? Or just not particularly eager to pursue the investigation (in which case the relevance for this article escapes me). The fault lies in the paragraph. It ought to make the relationship clear, or be cut.Wolfman 01:59, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Arrest and Operation POW (yet again)

We’ve been stating in the picture caption that Kerry was arrested on May 31, but I’m unable to verify that date. Various bits of information are: the march started on Friday in Concord; the plan was to spend the second night in Lexington; Kerry and the others were arrested in Lexington because the selectmen had refused to grant a permit; and a couple different perpetual calendars that I checked say that the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, 1971 was the 29th. If the arrest occurred after midnight it would have been on May 30. I haven’t specifically confirmed the date of the arrest, however. I think “May” will suffice.

Our current Operation POW account is too detailed and, in describing the overall protest plan, is contrary to every source I’ve read, as I’ve noted above. I’m rewriting to: correct the facts, trim the excess detail, omit the exact date of arrest, and note that it was the only arrest by working that fact into the text, as I suggested above, not as a separate graf. Because Neutrality seems to want a lot of (what I consider unnecessary) detail about the demo, I left in Paul Revere and the public reading of the Declaration of Independence, but I drew the line at the picnic and the fife band. All of that stuff wasn’t until Monday, anyway. It’s also not worth mentioning that Kerry, or anyone else arrested in the U.S. in 1971, was given his Miranda warnings, because that was standard (Miranda having been decided in 1966). Finally, having seen different figures for the number of arrests, I settled for just saying “hundreds”. Sorry, belated sig: JamesMLane 00:56, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Sounds fair enough to me. Ambi 01:10, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

John Kerry & bacitracin

This issue was discussed at length several days ago. There was no consensus on what bacitracin page should look like. Issue was resolved by another user adding word "antibiotic" to the Kerry page. Bacitracin Wiki link should not appear in Kerry page until content for it exists. Because there is no content on that link, it is distracting to the flow of the read when clicked on. If anybody thinks it should stay they should write the wiki page for bacitracin. Otherwise, the word bacitracin should stay in, but the Wiki link to the blank bacitracin page should be removed Rex071404 17:14, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

That's ridiculous. "Empty" links are how Wikipedia grows. - Nunh-huh 21:59, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I am not making an issue out of it. All Im am saying is that left in or removed, it is no big deal, and for that reason, the minor change created by me removing it, did not warrant the speedy reversal of my edit my another editor. Rex071404 23:01, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Link to SBVT sub-page

I thought (since changed to accomodate G) the sentence pointing to that sub-page should look like this:

"Also criticizing Kerry are over 200 other Vietnam Era veterans who have formed the group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (SBVT [13]). They have questioned Kerry's service record and his medals. Several SBVT members were in the same unit with Kerry, but all the surviving veterans of Swift boats commanded by Kerry support his presidential bid."

However, Gamaliel reverted me on that just now. any comments? Rex071404 17:53, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

I reverted nothing, I simply removed the second, redundant link to the SBVT article in the same sentence. Gamaliel 18:01, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
You did delete my link. Which, because it was all that I had added in the edit you changed, consitutes a de-facto revert. Whether you did this by "reversion" or by deletion, is moot. The fact remains that you did edit out my changes. And you did do it without discussion and without a rationale explaining, detailed Edit Summary. I disagree that your action was appropriately conducted. Rex071404 18:11, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
My God, you are tiresome. You had two links to the same place in the same sentence, I deleted one. I would have done the same thing to any editor in any article on wikipedia, and I consider it a minor edit under any circumstances. End of story. Gamaliel 18:18, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I have noted previously that I'd prefer to keep religious references off this talk page - unless of course you want to invite discussion. Since it appears that you are just using "My God" as a turn of phrase, I won't ask you who/what you are speaking of. As to your "tiresome" comment: I note that a significant number of complaints have been made against me, contending that I have used personal invective and/or insulting words. I ask you to reconsider if you should be referring to me as "tiresome". Under the currently expressed concerns about civility here, in my view, you are in breach, if you refer to me in that manner. Rex071404 18:24, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Next time, I will invoke Ahura Mazda instead. Gamaliel 18:27, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
You are free to invoke whomever or whatever you please. Simply be aware that if it's done by you in a manner along the lines of the "make baby Jesus" cry edit, it's likely to be rebuted by me as a hostile comment. Also, yes or no, do concede that your use of the word "tiresome" was intended to paint me in an unflattering light and as such, consitutes a derisive reference? Rex071404 18:32, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I will second the "tiresome" opinion. I'd even go so far as to say tedious. olderwiser 21:42, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Ok, so then it's clear. The long-timers here, are free to intentionally insult me, but if I do the same - or am simply accused of doing the same, there is a crisis, is that correct? Rex071404 22:59, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Well, Rex, since you want a discussion of the subject of painting each other in an unflattering light, let's discuss it. A week or so ago, you said that I was "vandalizing." On your Talk page, I asked you about the basis for your accusation. My inquiry has still not been answered.
You are jumping all around here. Are you done expressing your concerns about C. Kerry an Mr. Vallely? As for vandalizing, if that's not the appropriate word for what you were doing to my edits on a wholesale basis, what is? Rex071404 00:07, 9 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Let's put aside these distractions about whether the baby Jesus is jealous of someone's finely honed language skills, or whatever it was. The fact is that your attempt to play the wounded innocent just won't fly. The "long-timers" here have been far more polite to you than you've been to us, even though you've given far more provocation for pointed remarks. JamesMLane 23:48, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I refuse to allow you to involve an argument this way. I am looking forward, not back. Rex071404 00:07, 9 Aug 2004 (UTC)
In the middle of my previous comment you interpolated the charge that I'm "jumping all around." Yes, I am, and I find it very frustrating that this constant barrage of edits from you makes it hard for anything coherent to happen about this article. I went to fix some of the problems you've introduced into the article and I see a whole new batch of edits from you. I'll just have to do the best I can. Bear with me. JamesMLane 02:33, 9 Aug 2004 (UTC)