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  •  It should have stopped in 1993 when BushInc was (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dallasdoc, corvo, mary4, stonemason

    at its weakest point thanks to the few Democrats in the senate and congress who worked diligently to uncover IranContra, Iraqgate, BCCI, illegal wars in Central America and CIA drugrunning.

    But.... those scandals and their headlines helped get Clinton elected and what did he do in return?

    Democrats, the Truth Still Matters!

    By Robert Parry
    (First Posted May 11, 2006)

    Editor's Note: With the Democratic victories in the House and Senate, there is finally the opportunity to demand answers from the Bush administration about important questions, ranging from Dick Cheney's secret energy policies to George W. Bush's Iraq War deceptions. But the Democrats are sure to be tempted to put the goal of "bipartisanship" ahead of the imperative for truth.

    Democrats, being Democrats, always want to put governance, such as enacting legislation and building coalitions, ahead of oversight, which often involves confrontation and hard feelings. Democrats have a difficult time understanding why facts about past events matter when there are problems in the present and challenges in the future.

    Given that proclivity, we are re-posting a story from last May that examined why President Bill Clinton and the last Democratic congressional majority (in 1993-94) shied away from a fight over key historical scandals from the Reagan-Bush-I years -- and the high price the Democrats paid for that decision:

    My book, Secrecy & Privilege, opens with a scene in spring 1994 when a guest at a White House social event asks Bill Clinton why his administration didn’t pursue unresolved scandals from the Reagan-Bush era, such as the Iraqgate secret support for Saddam Hussein’s government and clandestine arms shipments to Iran.

    Clinton responds to the questions from the guest, documentary filmmaker Stuart Sender, by saying, in effect, that those historical questions had to take a back seat to Clinton’s domestic agenda and his desire for greater bipartisanship with the Republicans.

    Clinton "didn’t feel that it was a good idea to pursue these investigations because he was going to have to work with these people," Sender told me in an interview. "He was going to try to work with these guys, compromise, build working relationships."

    Clinton’s relatively low regard for the value of truth and accountability is relevant again today because other centrist Democrats are urging their party to give George W. Bush’s administration a similar pass if the Democrats win one or both houses of Congress.

    Reporting about a booklet issued by the Progressive Policy Institute, a think tank of the Democratic Leadership Council, the Washington Post wrote, "these centrist Democrats ... warned against calls to launch investigations into past administration decisions if Democrats gain control of the House or Senate in the November elections."

    These Democrats also called on the party to reject its "non-interventionist left" wing, which opposed the Iraq War and which wants Bush held accountable for the deceptions that surrounded it.

    "Many of us are disturbed by the calls for investigations or even impeachment as the defining vision for our party for what we would do if we get back into office," said pollster Jeremy Rosner, calling such an approach backward-looking. [Washington Post, May 10, 2006]

    Yet, before Democrats endorse the DLC’s don’t-look-back advice, they might want to examine the consequences of Clinton’s decision in 1993-94 to help the Republicans sweep the Reagan-Bush scandals under the rug. Most of what Clinton hoped for – bipartisanship and support for his domestic policies – never materialized.

    Entire article is a must read for anyone who cares about anti-corruption, open government issues.

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