Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Dysfunctional democracy

Here is the most astounding statement to (recently) spew from Dick Cheney’s mouth regarding our failure to find caches of WMD in Iraq:

"I repeat that we never had the burden of proof; Saddam Hussein did."

Excuse me? Wasn't the basis for an unprecedented policy shift of preemptive strike made on the basis that WE believed Hussein had WMD? And now we learn that said “proof” of WMD is based (in part) on faulty intelligence from a crackpot informant who sought asylum in Germany?! Am I missing some important nuance to this debate? Or does this seem an absolutely preposterous statement?

Didn't we have the burden to prove that he was engaged in such a weapon's program? Under Cheney's logic, who's to stop say North Korea from attacking because America possesses nuclear weapons?

The result of this crap is that while there was previously no connection between Hussein and bin Laden, Al Qaeda (and probably every other terrorist organization) now has a yeast-like presence in Iraq.

I’m convinced that our government is on the fast track to complete and utter breakdown. Maybe we’ve got to hit rock bottom before we can find our way out of this shit hole we’re in. (Apologies for the foul language. I’m feeling ferocious about this.)

Cheney returned to the American Enterprise Institute yesterday to speak to a friendly crowd on the issue of Iraq. He said: "I do not believe it is wrong to criticize the war on terror or any aspect thereof.

“What is not legitimate, and what I will again say is dishonest and reprehensible, is the suggestion by some U.S. senators that the president . . . misled the American people on prewar intelligence." This, he said, "is revisionism of the most corrupt and shameless variety."

Read between the lines. So maybe Bush didn’t mislead us, but how about Cheney himself or Rummy?

Chaos doesn’t only reign at the White House. E.J. Dionne wrote about the growing dysfunction in Congress that came to a head last Friday with Rep. John Murtha’s emotional plea to get out of Iraq. I know people are backpedaling about how the country will fall into chaos, but isn’t it already there? And didn’t we create that chaos? Don’t we have to live with the aftermath our failed policies created?

Can common sense prevail? Does it even exist inside the Beltway? I’m thinking no and here is evidence from Dionne’s column:

(Rep. Gene) Taylor's syntax only underscored the emotion he brought to the floor: "Mr. Speaker, in south Mississippi tonight, the people . . . who are living in two- and three-man igloo tents waiting for Congress to do something, have absolutely got to think this place has lost their minds. The same Congress that voted to give the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans tax breaks every time . . . suddenly after taking care of those who had the most, we have got to hurt the least. . . . Folks, this is insane. . . . This is the cruelest lie of all, that the only way you can help the people who have lost everything is by hurting somebody else."

I don’t recognize my country.

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