||[May. 24th, 2007|11:19 am]
The American Caliban
Because I am having a bad work day and I didn't sleep, here's a cranky political bit.
I read and hear and see various thoughtful "analysts" and "pundits" and political types discussing the Iraq war lately, and they keep saying things like this: "How did this intelligence failure occur?" and "How is it that we proceeded on bad evidence about weapons of mass destruction?" and "How can we improve/reform/rebuild our intelligence services to avoid these blunders in the future?"
There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The WMD rationale for the war was a deliberate lie from beginning to end. Anyone who stood up to the lie, especially in the intelligence services, was fired or sidelined. Parallel intelligence services were set up exactly to repeat the lie in official documents. An ugly revenge was taken on an official who stuck to the truth. This is all common knowledge.
So why are these beard-stroking collaborationists musing in a measured and dignified way about the strange and certainly unfortunate case of the not-quite-accurate intelligence estimate? Why hasn't Hillary or Obama or anyone at all with access to the microphones and the rabbit-ear TV come out and said "J'accuse, Mr. President: you have lied to us and done so deliberately, and you know full well there were no WMD, and you and your lackeys have sent us into a bloody unwinnable war out of pride and greed?"
I'm supposed to understand all the cynical reasons why politics is shitty but this one is just past me. These people have so much to gain from telling that truth loudly; what are they afraid of, exactly?
Because then it's tanks in the street time, relieved of duty time. I mean, right?
My gut feeling is that they haven't told the truth because ultimately, they will want the support of the same moneyed interests that have benefitted from the war, and who would take exception to the war's portrayal as a war of greed. If the candidates come out on the war being a greedfest, then they have to call the American corporate class as the load of carpetbaggers they are.
Just off the cuff over here.
This is a pretty understandable response. It mirrors my own meltdown about six months ago, when Daniel Schorr on NPR, whom I generally respect as a journalist, said: "And now the public support for the war in Iraq is declining in the face of a more determined insurgency than we expected."
I can recall a time when Sean, James and I could not open our mouths in public without the phrase "asymetric war of attrition that the U.S. is totally unprepared for..." emitting from our collective grills.
So yeah, who the hell knew Iraq was going to turn into a clusterfuck of biblical proportions...
Oh, wait... that would be us.
2007-05-24 09:57 pm (UTC)
Re: Mayhaps it's because......
Disagree with my politics all you want, but don't accuse me of being an American Idol fan. Smile when you say that, pardner.
2007-05-24 11:46 pm (UTC)
If Hillary and Obama criticize too hard, they can run risk of their words being construed as being anti-military, thus anti-patriotic which is completely counter-intuitive if a real patriot like Jefferson were still alive. But the reality is that this kind of negative talk will not bode well to capture all those voters that live in the middle of the country and love that them there military.
Instead, they talk out of both sides of their mouth. They are mute about the military, but will say that since we have created some much instability in the gulf and this has contributed to high gas prices, we need more alternatives sources of energy, like ethanol, which those people in the middle of the country love to hear (Conrad, you are right about the ethanol, I am done trying to drink that koolaid). So, a safe statement like, "This drawn out confusing war has shown America that we cannot depend on the middle east to supply our energy needs, so we need to create better alternatives at home."
Like I said a year ago at the coffee shop when we talked about this, if Bush wants support for this war and was actually a good politician, gas prices should be at a $1.50 a gallon. Please note that a good politician does not mean a good person.