Dan Rather is a child molester. I mean, that is what the rumor is, according to a mass email I got. And, the actual truth of it is irrelevant, right? Because the issue is not the facts of Dan Rather's child molestation, it's the rumors surrounding Dan Rather molesting little kiddies.
What do you think would happen to someone who did a story like the above? Yet that is exactly what happened to President Bush. Cross out child molestor and insert the ephitet of your choice and you get nothing but a smear devoid of content.