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February 01, 2004

IF NOT LIES, WHAT? BLAME BUT ALSO ANSWERS REQUIRED

Maybe the WMD are here?




The Left is in the middle of an attempted shout down from Bush apologists - aka useful idiots - who look for any reason to avoid the question of whether he and his administration filtered the intelligence they got - flawed or not - to conform to what they wanted to hear.

As they tell it, the Rove administration would not stoop so low as to look for a reason to war and to ultimately kill American soldiers (if you prefer the passive voice - to get American soldiers killed).

As they tell it, Bush did the best he could with what he got. And of course, everyone else thought Iraq had the WMDs so what's the difference now? Why, the difference must be Bush hatred.

Those who say this? How can you?

Here's one reason - but no excuse. Because bloggers are bloggers, some of the vapid, nasty, responses to Bush criticism can be forgiven. It goes both ways. But really, these bloggers need to get out more and look at the rest of the world.

The difference in previous administrations is that others weres skeptical enough of their intelligence NOT to attack Iraq. That's thousands of lives saved (UK, Polish, Iraqi and American).

We need to find out certain things about what has happened in the last few years.

I never protested when Janet Reno pushed independent studies of supposed Clinton administration transgressions. Many of these studies, in an ideal world, are healthy for a country. No matter that hatred of Clinton allowed the results of all these commissions not to sway them. No matter that the idea that Hillary Clinton had some part in Vince Foster's death persists - more strongly than Republicans care to admit.

Now we have reasons for serious studies and I want to see them happen. And I don't think I'm alone because I have retained the ability to think like an non-partisan American.

I want the September 11 Commission to be able to do their work and the people in the Bush administration who dragged their feet and limited their cooperation not to be rewarded for such un-American behavior by having the commission closed in May.

It's not that I want them to finger Bush and blame him for everything. It's that I want answers. Most of the country does if they are honest.

Do we want a president who is bold and decisive? One who won't just talk, but act? I don't know, for sure. Sometimes we want a president who knows the right thing to do before he does it.

Yes we want action from a presdent. We also want one who does what's right and considers - really considers - the result of his actions.

President Bush may have done this. But he sure tried real hard to give us the impression that he wasn't listening to anybody but his hand-picked men and women. Men and women who themselves had clear agendas that did not include fighting terrorism but instead taking down Saddam. The one thing they point to to claim that that position is one and the same was that he gave money to the families of Palestinian terrorists who blew themselves up in Israel?

Sorry, that's weak. So did Pakistan and the Saudis, yet we're still cosying up to them.

What else? How else was Saddam involved in terrorism? I've heard of no other evidence presented by the Bush administration. I've only heard of what he might have done - evidence for which remains lacking.

The thoughtful left and the few members of the right with some semblance of integrity such as John McCain, want answers. (I say "some semblance" because McCain is still going out to campaign for Bush even though, as far as I can tell, Bush is the exact opposite of everything McCain stands for and believes in).

That there will be political ramifications to such a study is a given. Bush apologists say these political considerations must be the only ones those on the left care about. How shallow.

Of course, those on the left want to know if their fears about Bush are true. But the right should also want to know if the person who is their chosen leader is a good person who plays it straight.

A lot of the investigations into Clinton would have been supported by a much broader range of people on the left if the right hadn't tried to demonize him before the answers were there. The left is doing that to some extent, this time around, but I bleieve it's because now all of a sudden the right doesn't want answers and they are layig claim to proof before proof exists.

Forget the right's previous claims regarding Clinton that if a president lies it shows a lot about his character. Forget uncovering things that, if true, approach a real reason for impeachment. Forget claims that if your president lets others make serious decisions around him then he is an unneccesary presence. A waste of space.

Forget all that but remember this - when did you forget that we exist to do what's good for ourselves and the country? Sure many politicians have forgotten this as well, but the average congressmember does more to improve the country than you do. Then I do.

Step back and take a look at that. Stop using cynicism as an excuse to hate.

Stop defining your opinions by your opponents. Start questioning across party lines. You will gain much more respect. And a real dialogue will start to blossom. Otherwise blogs are doomed to be full of hate. Otherwise blogs are just satisfying places to vent snideness and derogation and nothing more.

What have I left unsaid?