Saturday, July 23, 2005


Editor's note.

Brandon here. I'm back. Before I say anything else I want to thank my brother, Kyle for "subbing" for me and for the fine posts that he made while Kelli and I were vacationing in Ireland.

I'll have more to say about our travels in future posts, but for now I want to say a few words about Carl Rove. What exactly is the deal here? I leave the country for a few days and everything begins to fall apart. Tsk tsk tsk. I wrote the first two thirds of this on the plane trip back home from Ireland. I finished the final third a few minutes ago. I hop you enjoy it.

And if I don't say so in the near future, it's great to be back,

Yours truly, Brandon


You really have to give the Bush Regime credit where credit is due. They have more guts than they have decency or common sense. They get caught in a lie and they accuse their accusers of lying. They get caught spinning half truths and out right fabrications and they spin additional half truths and still more out right fabrications to cover up the previous set of distortions. And so it goes on and mercilessly on, with lie after lie after covering lie after lie after lie.

The latest example of right wing mendacity involves an attempt to transform Carl Rove into a kind of right wing superhero. I am of course talking about the effort which is now being made to recast Bush Regime Propaganda Minister, Carl Rove, as a kind of bureaucratic whistleblower in the Joe Wilson/Valerie Plame case.
Welcome to the demented world of the far right, where Carl Rove was actually performing a public service by outing a united States CIA agent. In Rove’s twisted version of the story, Rove himself should be congratulated, perhaps even rewarded because of right wing allegations that Joe Wilson had been sent to Africa (to check out reports that Iraq had tried to obtain yellowcake uranium for use in nuclear weapons) not by CIA director George Tenet nor by Vice President Dick Cheney, but by Wilson’s own wife, the above-mentioned Valerie Plame. Now I have to admit, this has been a rather interesting take on a serious situation. Indeed, there were times when I might have laughed if it hadn’t been for the fact that, as usual, Rove and his puppets in the White House have again made self-contradicting arguments. On the one hand they claim that Plame was such a low level official that outing her was no big deal. For days now I have been listening to right wing radio and it’s the same set of disingenuous arguments day in and day out. She wasn’t doing under cover work. She wasn’t that high up in the organization. Rove didn’t out her by name, only by relationship to her husband, ad nauseam. But then, in the next breath, the same right wingers will claim that this low level, unimportant official had enough official power to approve her husband’s trip to Africa. And the fact that the two arguments are mutually exclusive makes no difference at all to the callers on AM hate radio. At no time has it occurred to these dunderheads that Plame might have recommended her husband for the task (which is not the same as giving her approval) and that the actual approval had come from higher up in the Bush Regime or from the Powers That Be within the CIA. And what the Right Wingers fail to mention (their memories seem to rather selective on these points) is that when Matthew Cooper sent that incriminating email to his superiors, Cooper specifically said that he had spoken to Rove and that Rove had said that Wilson’s wife “apparently works” at the CIA. Indeed, the same email stated that Wilson’s wife, not Tenet or Cheney, who had authorized Wilson’s trip to Africa. But that only raises another question. Who specifically told this to Cooper? Was it another source besides Carl Rove? Or was it Cal Rove himself? Let’s face it. These right wing prevaricators have turned distortion and ass covering into highly developed art forms and it wouldn’t surprise me if Carl Rove were either directly or indirectly behind the deliberately planned fantasy which is now being accepted as fact by the far right.

Of course, the ironic part about all of this is that in the end, this is actually a very minor lie. The truly damaging lies were told during the weeks and months prior to the invasion of Iraq. In other words, while Carl Rove has again proven that he is a person of low character, this particular set of lies, while serious, were actually somewhat less destructive than the ones which landed us in Iraq in the first place.

FACT: In the weeks and months leading up to our invasion of choice, the Bush Administration deliberately created the impression that American Soldiers would be welcomed with flowers and Candy. This lie has been exposed by the fact that we have now been there for two years; that we have more than 1700 dead American soldiers and thousands of innocent dead Iraqis. Bush himself used meaningless, indefinable references to sacrifice. But while the President was spewing meaningless platitudes, right wing think tanks like the Heritage Foundation were flooding the airwaves with jingoistic rhetoric which sounded as if it had been written in Paris or Berlin during the opening days of World War I. American Soldiers were the best trained and best equipped soldiers on the face of the earth. They were well-prepared for the hypothetical battle. Talking heads from the far right espoused the superiority of the Pentagon’s high tech toys in just about any circumstance imaginable. The message was very clear. While Bush uttered mush, the talking heads described the war as a welcomed cake walk. The Iraqi people would be grateful to them. WE could expect low casualties. Well, friends and neighbors, you only need to look at the present outcome to see how those predictions turned out. Or is it a coincidence that even the right wingers themselves are now saying that we may be in Iraq for another ten to twelve years. Why, if you didn’t know better, yu might be inclined to think that the war hasn’t gone as they had planned!

FACT: During the build up to the war the Bush Administration consistently flip flopped over its reason or reasons for going to war. First it was to prevent Saddam Hussein from obtaining or using weapons of mass destruction. Well, friends and neighbors, the last we knew we have not found those weapons of mass destruction. That should tell us something. It tells us that Wilson had it right and that Rove had it wrong.

FACT: After the exposure of the WMD lie, Rove and his dependent puppets came up with a new lie. They wanted to kill or capture Saddam Hussein. This was the one aspect of the war that actually contained a grain of truth—but only a grain. We did indeed capture Saddam Hussein—whereupon the right wingers claimed that a corner had been turned and that the budding Iraqi civil war would eventually simmer down. Turn on your television; pick up a paper; listen to your radio. The insurgency is still raging. I guess you might say that we turned that corner and walked into another disaster.

FACT: When capturing Saddam Hussein didn’t quite produce the result they had anticipated, Bush, Rove and Company created a new lie. We were in Iraq to create a democracy.

How many ways can you say: “Not in this lifetime?”

As Kyle has already pointed out, Basra has recently announced that it wants to create a local theocracy and has concluded a $1 billion dollar deal with Iran to detect landmines and to modernize the military. At the same time the new, ruling Shias have indicated that women will be ruled according to (Islamic) Law. In other words, Sharia, the same repressive philosophy that we were fighting in Afghanistan! Now Iraqi women may actually find themselves with fewer rights than they had under Saddam! The right wing answer (i.e. distortion) has been that the Iraqis can always change their constitution if they don’t like it, but in the same breath those same right wingers will admit that this might take anywhere from 15 to 20 years or even longer. Somehow I don’t think this will be of too much comfort when women are forced to wear those long black robes and head scarves; and they probably won’t be too thrilled when they are beaten over even minor transgressions of Islamic law.

Moreover, democracy may not be possible in Iraq--at least not in the short term. Before, during, and after the invasion, the Neocons continued to claim that Iraq was the Mid Eastern equivalent of Post World War II Germany. Again, as Kyle has pointed out, this was either a lie or a horrible error in judgment. Unlike the west, Iraq, and the Mid East in general, have had little to no experience with the philosophies and institutions which made democracy possible in the west. That isn’t to say that the Mid East won’t ever be democratic, but it might it might help if the entire were to experience the Islamic equivalents of the Reformation, the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. Or to be succinct, democracy needs time to evolve--it cannot be imposed at the point of a gun.

Nor was that the only miscalculation, What Rove, Bush, and the entire administration never understood was the fact that Iraq was, and essentially still is, a tribal society. The only reason it held together was because of ruthless totalitarianism from the top down. The totalitarianism has been removed and now the ethnic and religious differences have again boiled to the surface. And there’s even more bad news. Despite right wing claims to the contrary I see growing ties between Iraq and Iran. The right wing lie or fantasy (call it what you like) regarding Iran goes something like this: The Iraqis may be Shi’ites, but they tend to think of themselves as Iraqis first. I would argue that in this case, the religious and cultural ties between Iraqi Shi’ites and Iranian Shi’ites are more intense than the Neocons have imagined. Or have they forgotten that the Iraq-Iran War (the one in which Iraq and the United States were buddies and Saddam was shaking Donald Rumsfeld’s hand) was conducted by a Sunni-dominated regime. Again, I would argue that the religious ties, being as strong as they are in the area, might prove more attractive to Iraqi and Iranian Shi’ites than the Republican Neocons have imagined.

As for the Iraqi Constitution, the right wingers are now claiming that merely having it will serve as a magical talisman against a civil war. That sounds good—at least in theory-- but let’s get real here. The United States had a Constitution in the mid1800’s but it didn’t prevent The War Between The States. A more immediate example might be Lebanon, which also had a constitution, but which managed to tear itself apart for bloody year after bloody year over religion and politics. Again, the right wing lie machine has it wrong. Constitutions and civil wars are not mutually exclusive.

The upshot here is that this administration has a very long record when it comes to twisting the truth and a very short record when it comes to expressions of honesty. The fact that they would choose to portray Carl Rove as a White House Whistler-Blower instead of the security leak and war criminal that he truly is comes as no surprise to this liberal blogger.

The only mystery is why so many people continue to believe a proven liar after he has told so many lies How can this man maintain credibility after the unnecessary death and destruction that he has helped to inflict? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The only way this administration would ever tell the truth about anything would be if it were to do so by accident. And as we have seen in the past, this administration has become quite adept at covering up its lies and mistakes with still more lies and mistakes.

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