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You can’t fool them all

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Assessing the muck and mud that passed for Campaign 2010

By Hal Rhodes

“You may fool all of the people some of the time, you can even fool some of the people all of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.”   
That hoary adage originated with Honest Abe and conceivably might offer consolation to some candidates and voters today as we climb out of the muck and mud that passed for Campaign 2010.
But with due respect to our 16th president, I tend to side with the wit and wisdom of the late author and cartoonist James Thurber who maintained that “You can fool too many of the people too much of the time.”
The sorry truth is that some lies told often enough and vigorously enough have ways of taking on the qualities of “truth” in the minds of too many people, too often.
When incumbent Democratic Congressman Alan Grayson of Florida repeatedly accused his Republican opponent, Daniel Webster, of refusing “the call to service” during the Vietnam era, it’s quite likely that many voters in their district went to their polling places believing the charge to be true.
Only it wasn’t.
After college, Webster dutifully reported for his physical exam but was found to be medically ineligible for military service.