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Ear Flap

Claim:   Photograph shows a veteran wearing a "bullshit protector" flap over his ear during a speech by Ted Kennedy.


Examples:   [Collected via e-mail, 2005]

Bill Moyer, 73, wears a "Bullshit Protector" flap over his ear while
Senator Ted Kennedy addresses the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Origins:   It's quite common (especially with the speedy distribution of material the Internet makes possible) for politically-oriented jokes, photographs, and other put-downs to "jump parties," with partisans of one side altering names and other details to associate the same material with the personalities and politics of the other side. (The same set of
spurious quotes, for example has been variously attributed to former [Republican] Vice-President Dan Quayle, [Democratic] Senator John Kerry, and [Republican] President George W. Bush.)

The item cited at the head of this page is another example of this phenomenon. Although the displayed image is indeed a real photograph distributed by the Associated Press, it has no connection to [Democratic] Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts. The photo originally accompanied news accounts of a speech delivered by President George W. Bush at the national convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Salt Lake City on 22 August 2005. War veteran Bill Moyer (pictured above) chose the occasion to display his displeasure with President Bush's policies by wearing a cardboard flap labeled "BULLSHIT PROTECTOR" over his ear during the President's speech.

The original photograph and caption were released as shown below:


Bill Moyer, 73, wears a "Bullshit Protector" flap over his ear while President George W. Bush, on screen at rear, addresses the Veterans of Foreign Wars at their 106th convention Monday, Aug. 22, 2005, in Salt Lake City. Moyer served in Korea and Vietnam, and in the post-WWII occupation of Germany.

In May 2012 this photograph was circulated again with text associating it with members of the current administration:


Last updated:   30 May 2012

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    CBSNews.com.   "Bush Urges Support for Iraq War."
    22 August 2005.

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    23 August 2005.