The Obama Campaign’s Nuclear Option

Andrew Sullivan —  Jun 20 2012 @ 10:00am

Frank Rich implores Obama to destroy Romney with negative ads:

Doing it right doesn’t necessarily mean doing right by the facts. An effective attack ad doesn’t require strict accuracy as long as its broad caricature rings true. It has to land a punch as propaganda, not journalism. For all his trigger-happy rhetoric, Goldwater was not in favor of starting World War III, whereas the theoretically peace-loving Johnson would prove, after reelection, to be an enthusiastic escalator of the disastrous war in Vietnam. But if the "Daisy" ad was not determinative in Johnson’s reelection victory and not a balanced depiction of Goldwater, it remains the gold standard of attack ads for good reason. Now that Obama is trying to fend off a GOP as radically right wing as Goldwater was, it’s a standard he will have to meet.

Galupo finds "something rank about this business":

I don’t mean the dodgy attack ads, which like the poor will always be with us; I mean Frank Rich’s embrace of them. Partisan tribalism, with its tolerance of behavior that would elicit howls of outrage if the other side were doing it, is one of the most dispiriting aspects of modern politics. I have a hunch liberals will hate the executive orders of a President Romney, and I’m pretty sure Frank Rich would not have even considered writing this piece in 2004 on behalf of the Swift Boaters.

But if your enemy brings an AK-47 to the fight, what's a man gonna do? Become Dukakis?