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INSIDE BUSHCO INNER-SANCTA and among sundry political hangers on, I've come to the conclusion (on a pissy day like today) that for these people the meaning of loyalty can be summed up in single trait: the readiness to obfuscate the truth, anytime, anywhere, at any personal or political cost.

Preparedness to go beyond obfuscation is also essential: you must be ready to lie by omission, commission, to tell half-truths, white lies, grey lies, super double secret modo lies, and lie without limit; that is, without inconvenient lines in the sand beyond which you will not go. Conscience. There can be none of that.

You must be willing to mouth the lame lies of today and take them all back tomorrow, replacing them with newly minted, Rove-vetted, extra-hot/power spin/double rinse and final fluff confabulations that took a full wash--I-mean news cycle to construct. And do it seamlessly, as if you'd never uttered a contrary word.

Become indignant at the suggestion you've reversed or modified shifted position in any way. You have done nothing of the sort but the political brinksmen across the aisle would like the public to think so.

If on occasion you can't think of what to say, or if the questions become too pointed, repeat the standard patter like a broken record. Invoke 9/11, Democrat obstructionism, Sen. Byrd's ancient flirtation with the KKK.

There can be no hesitation, no second thoughts. To be a loyalist you have to lie like a street hustling, fake Rolex pandering, airport loitering petty criminal, and your skill must be sharp, automatic--called up on command.

Indeed to be a true loyalist you must become adept at maintaining a blizzard of lies--fractals, prisms, self-multiplying virus-lies, armies of infinitely regressing Russian doll lies--thus doing your part to feed the ever-whirling, ever-dervishing vortex of sound and fury, signifying nothing (but Republican shame) through which no truth, light, or genuine concern can pass.

You must be prepared to lie on the record and under oath. This is essential. Go before domestic investigative bodies and international policy consortia and swear by your lies. Repeat false statements to the media, amplify them, mantra-ize them--cultivate a force field of triple-speak confusion and migraine headache initiation with every iteration.

Make the public believe it's impossible to know the truth, or better still, that unbiased records of fact do not exist outside Republican journals. [Heh. Astounding.] Get your radio mouthpieces promulgating the idea that the official reports of neutral bodies are surely tainted if a single Democrat other than Zell Miller contributed.

On the other hand, if an official report finds us blameless, praise it and exaggerate any point that flatters us, however dimly.

Impugn the motives of decent men and women, red or blue, who would try to thwart the aims BushCo. Suggest sexual deviance, mental instability--always trot out the old "crass political gain" canard.

As time goes on and the amnesiac American people forget what exactly was agreed upon as unimpeachable fact, spread seeds of doubt whenever possible, especially on TV. Gradually introduce the idea that rock-solid evidence is, "in fact," held in no small suspicion by a few, then "some," (as in, "some say the sources of information were shaky") then quite a few, moving on to many, then most. Finally bust right out (preferably on CNN) and say that virtually everyone knows the entire report, findings, investigation, whatever, is a sham, an exercise in creative writing. Everyone knows and concedes as much, except the disgraceful Democrats, who it is well-known will try to make political hay out of anything--no scruples--including a tender issue like this (a tear or spontaneous choke up might be a nice touch here).

Deliberately confound the facts. Before long the damning truth will become so distant and fuzzy even the smartest, the most well-prepared interlocutors will wind up sounding DITHERING and OFF TOPIC, trying to summarize a progression of deceptions as thick as Ichabod's forest, explain how the deceptions worked together synergistically and how indeed they were engineered to do just that. No one wants to listen to lengthy windups or detail-heavy backstory. Let 'em blow smoke a minute then cut 'em off.

Sure the ripple effects of our countless misdirections and creative interpretations of fact here led predictably and premeditatedly to Horrible, Hurtful Mess X, which indeed persists to this day. But it's a long and perilous journey from X to our wrongdoing or from our wrongdoing to X, and besides, it's all been said before and we legitimately stonewalled it. Feel free to laugh good naturedly at reporters who bring up such tiresome, fusty old hat.

Golly. To say these people have balls of brass doesn't capture it.

On a pissy-mood day like today, I'm tempted to think that Bush loyalists are a species of amoralists that regular folks are just too good, too pure, too naive of evil to fathom. (And, one might imagine, a species hard to come by: where did one administration find so many ethical zeros? Oh, right. Bush I.)

Sure, the spin maestros on the right are forever leveling the same charge at us (in some instances duly); read "Democrat" where I wrote Republican in the lines above and it could be Rush talking about what liars we are.

But we are NOT all of us rolling around in the same puddle of partisan-minded slop. Politicians are NOT all equally squalid of heart & mind and Bush loyalists, I'm prepared to say, are a different order of being altogether.

please turn to Part Two: Irked (with love)

Originally posted to aitchdee on Fri Jul 15, 2005 at 05:02 PM PDT.

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