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Simply put, Derrick Jackson of the Boston Globe is one of the best op-ed writers around, as he proved again in his piece yesterday entitled Invisible Integrity.  He shows that from the brief opening paragraph:
WE WERE promised transparent dignity. We got the invisible dungeon.

I will use this posting to quote from and reflect upon the column and the subject he addresses.  As is usually the case when I quote from a column such as this, I strongly urge you to read the entire piece, and not merely rely upon my selections.

Jackson continues by reminding us of the statements offered by Republicans during the campaign of 2000.  I will skip his introductory words to each and merely offer the quotations of which he reminds us.

From Bush:

'We want to restore honor and integrity to the White House"

From Cheney:

'It is absolutely essential for us to do whatever has to be done to restore honor and integrity to the Oval Office."

From McCain:

''My primary reason for endorsing Governor Bush is based less on policy than it is principle. Quite simply, I believe that he is our best hope to end the Clinton-Gore era and restore honor and integrity back to the White House."

And from Bush again, after the 3rd and final debate:

''Should I be fortunate to become your president, when I put my hand on the Bible, I will swear to not only uphold the laws of the land, but I will also swear to uphold the honor and dignity of the office to which I have been elected, so help me God."

The next paragraph is simply offered without commentary:

What America did not know at the time or chose not to believe was which part of the Bible Bush would emphasize. It must have been Psalm 115. That passage says, ''They have mouths, but they cannot speak; eyes have they, but they cannot see. They have ears, but they cannot hear; noses, but they cannot smell. They have hands, but they cannot feel; feet but they cannot walk; They make no sound with their throat."

Jackson immediately follows that with

hat would certainly explain prisoners held without charge for years, ghost detainees, CIA secret prisons, the prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib, and beatings and dog attacks in immigration detention centers on our soil.

He continues by describing an NPR report on a specific case of abuse on an immigrant detainee named Richard Rust who collapsed and got not medical treatment for 20 minutes, nor did an ambulance appear for an equal period of time.  Other detainees received belittling treatment, including being called "boy."  And Jackson further notes from the other detainees:

They said that the day after Rust's death, guards swept up friends of Rust and put them in windowless punishment cells for up to three months. They said they were intimidated by staff not to talk about Rust.

This was DOMESTIC, here in the U. S., in Oakdale Louisiana.  Jackson uses this case to illustrate a point he notes from the grade report from the (-11 Commission, where they said

''The US has not engaged in a common coalition approach to developing standards for detention and prosecution of captured terrorists. Indeed, US treatment of detainees has elicited broad criticism and makes it harder to build the necessary alliances to cooperate effectively with partners in a global war on terror."

Bush has demanded "transparency" from the other members of the "Axis of Evil" and from Cuba.  In 2002, as Jackson notes, he said

'People who love freedom understand that we cannot allow nations that aren't transparent, nations with a terrible history, nations that are so dictatorial they're willing to starve their people, we can't allow them to mate up with terrorist organizations."
Jackson continues by reminding us that the current round of reports including of the secret prisons, come more than 18 months after, when the Abu Ghraib story broke, Bush promised tough investigations:
''Here in America, in our system," Bush said, ''the judicial process will be fully transparent."

Jackson concludes his piece with two paragraphs that focus on the issue of transparency.  They are worth quoting in their entirety:

he only thing transparent about the administration are its excuses. This week, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice neither confirmed nor denied the existence of secret prisons in Europe for terror suspects. All she said was that intelligence gathered from interrogations has ''saved European lives." Typical of the administration, she offered no proof how.
You would expect no proof from an administration that deceived the world about weapons of mass destruction, has not punished higher-ups for the prisoner abuse, and had Vice President Dick Cheney leading the fight to have the CIA declared exempt from laws banning torture. For four years of the so-called war on terror, Bush promised transparency. You can see right through him.

I remind you of the title I gave this diary, "Condemned by their own words?"  Jackson's skillful collection and excerpting of previous statements, most especially by Bush, are, simply put, damning.   By reminding us of the context in which these were said, little additional commentary is necessary.  The words speak directly to us.  It is unfortunate that we do not see more of this, and in places other than an op ed page not read by that many Americans.  Reading the words is powerful.   To see them said by those who spoke them would make them inescapable.  I wish the broadcast and cable media would consistently do what Jackson has done:  take us back and let us hear what our leaders have said to us.  The conclusion of any fairminded viewer would be inescapable:  either they were lying in the statements they made then or else they are miserable failures at keeping their word.   No other conclusion is possible.  And we will reach that judgment, as will any fairminded reader of Jackson's column, not because political opponents are looking to tear them down, or hate America, or any other misdirection they may offer.  They will, as I noted when I began, be condemned by their own words.

Originally posted to teacherken on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 03:10 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  recommend, comment, mojo, ignore (4.00)
    your choice and the judgment of the community is final

    Those who can, do. Those who can do more, TEACH!

    by teacherken on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 03:11:05 AM PST

  •  Good morning teacher (none)
    I'll have to remember to check out the Globe more often. So many sources.

    Your are one I think that would really appreciate  this text and video.

    •  Not meaning to quibble, (none)
      but since you are a teacher, you should understand that what Bush and Cheney promised and what people thought they meant are really quite different.  Their speech writers very cleverly ascribed characteristics to physical structures (White House and Oval Office) which cannot be expected to either benefit from or display these characteristics.
      How does one "hold up the honor of the White House?"
      Yes, they were using symbolic language, but when you come right down to it, the symbols were meaningless.
      I always enjoy reading Jackson and he is to be commended for culling these examples of mislead.  But what we need to take away from this is an awarness of being misled when it happens, not three or four years later.
      Indeed, those who coined these phrases and threw them at Clinton as an accusation should have been called to account.
      Which is not to say that Clinton did not violate his position of trust--just that the "honor of the Oval Office" was never in jeopardy.

      Forget "GOD, GUNS, GAYS, GIRLS & GETS"

      by hannah on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:08:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  who said recently (none)
    "We can win the war" (in Iraq)?

    George Bush did.

    He called for the impossible, he's going to get the disastrous possible instead, and we need to make sure that every individual American finds out about this... and hold him and the GOP accountable in 2006 and 2008.

    Looking for intelligent energy policy alternatives? Try here.

    by alizard on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 03:30:31 AM PST

    •  and who also said... (4.00)
      ...regarding the "War on Terror":

      "I don't think you can win it."

      Bush said this in the 2004 campaign, of course.  And lest it seem like this is some unfair, out-of-context quote, here is that part of his interview with Matt Lauer of NBC:

      Lauer: You said to me a second ago, one of the things you'll lay out in your vision for the next four years is how to go about winning the war on terror. That phrase strikes me a little bit. Do you really think we can win this war on terror in the next four years?

      President Bush: I have never said we can win it in four years.

      Lauer: So I'm just saying can we win it? Do you see that?

      President Bush: I don't think you can win it. But I think you can create conditions so that those who use terror as a tool are less acceptable in parts of the world.

      Of course, if a Democrat had said this, all the hate-filled GOP propaganda monkeys would be let out of their cages to scream bloody murder about what a goddamned traitor that Democrat is.  

      And of course, Bush later denied saying the very thing he said, and said we CAN "win it," point-blank, no qualifiers.  

      I agree that we have to use their own words more, teacherken.  When Tim Russert does this on Meet the Press, everyone acts like he's doing some amazing feat of journalistic derring-do.  I'm no fan of Russert OR the particular way he conducts interviews (some, like Bush himself and Condi Rice, consistently get lobbed softballs rather than have their own quotes thrown back at them).  But it seems an obvious way of pointing out the gap between a politician's words and his deeds.  

      And for the Bushies, that gap is the freakin' Grand Canyon.

      •  No inconsistency. (none)
        In his public statements, Bush constantly tries to conflate the War on Terror with his war of aggression in Iraq, but he knows the difference, and this proves it.

        War in Iraq: he is still deluded that he can win.

        War on Terror: he can't win a war on a tactic, and even he admits this. He hasn't done anything in that regard but go through the motions, except of course to destroy the moral standing of his nation by descending to the level of conduct one expects only from totalitarian regimes.

        Folly is fractal: the closer you look at it, the more of it there is. - TNH

        by Canadian Reader on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 06:55:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  asdf (none)
           "except of course to destroy the moral standing of his nation by descending to the [committing] level of conduct [crimes] one expects only from [of] totalitarian regimes."

          Forgive me.  I don't mean to pick on you -- your point is exact and should remain sharp.  I see this all the time in OpEd pieces (NYT comes to mind).  We take a pointed argument, and then we pull back slightly, unwilling to really think the unthinkable.  Think it.  It is true (I think).

          -5.13;-6.92 Slap George Bush awake from his wet dream, he is not the "oberster Gerichtsherr"

          by Yellow Canary on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 07:09:38 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  please don't misunderstand me (none)
          I think Bush's statement above about terrorism (leaving aside the dumbass "war on" rhetorical construction) is one of the more sane and honest things he ever said.  But:

          1.  Like I said, any DEMOCRAT would be pilloried as a Al-Queda-loving traitor by the slimy Limbaughs and Coulters of the world for saying the exact same words.   No question about it.

          2. When that statement apparently didn't play well with his base, Bush later denied saying it, and asserted the exact opposite.

          I agree with your points about the distinction between the alleged "War on Terror" and the Iraq invasion / oocupation.  How much Bush really knows the difference between those two, even using his own juvenile terms, is something we can't know.  But I concur, his brief moment of public lucidity shows that he may well get it more than he lets on.  

          ...Which is supremely cynical and dishonest.  Which is absolutely what you expect of Bush and his cronies.

    •  all I really have in mind here (none)
      is dozens of different commercials with Bush's talking head saying "We can win the war" across lots of different backgrounds (flag draped coffins, stock footage of burning Baghdad, thousands of cheering terrorists waving AK-47s... a running tally of the cost of the war... as a small start) showing what America's really winning.

      Offhand, I'd expect to peel a few hundred people off the GOP base with every showing of every variant of this ad... of their base because on this issue, everyone else has already decided that Bush is lying, insane, or both.

      What's Bush going to respond with? Calling himself a liar? Actually, poke at him hard enough and he may even come up with another gem worthy of a thousand commercials.

      Looking for intelligent energy policy alternatives? Try here.

      by alizard on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 11:52:49 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Great piece... (4.00)
    They, of course, explain it all away with '9/11 changed everything...' Hogwash.

    BushCo changed everything.

    Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead

    by ilona on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 03:42:35 AM PST

    •  Transparency statements are post 9/11 (4.00)
      Since they are sourced as '2002'

      "We're spending our BILLIONS over there so we don't have to spend them here." - Joon

      by Siberian on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:34:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  9/11 didn't change everything, (4.00)
      they changed everything.

      -6.88/-5.64 Murtha on Bush: "Undermining his credibility? What has he said that would give him credibility?"

      by John West on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:47:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hmm...that's exactly what I said... (none)
        ...And you got 3 '4's for it? Funny...

        Ah, the fickle dKos voters. Your more current tagline must have been the clincher. ;o)

        Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead

        by ilona on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:06:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Gotta keep current or they'll wrap (none)
          up the fish bones with ya. This "4" collection business is brutal, and by that I mean it's a brutal business.

          -6.88/-5.64 Murtha on Bush: "Undermining his credibility? What has he said that would give him credibility?"

          by John West on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:54:46 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  The crux of the matter. (4.00)
    Good, one, TK.  This realy is the crux of the matter with Bush's loss of support among the indies and even the moderate right: they gave him the benefit of the doubt, he lied.  And, in squandering that benefit, he made it difficult (going to impossible) for those who are part of this reality to trust him on other things when the time came.  

    The latest example of this is the initiative to get people to accept the notion that "The US does not torture", or that they can be trusted to exercise due discretion in snatching 'bad guys' off the streets of Milan.  Sorry, Condi, but that dog won't hunt no more.

    "Sometimes I think we're alone. Sometimes I think we're not. In either case, the thought is staggering." - R. Buckminster Fuller -5.88/-5.23

    by Shadan7 on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 03:45:56 AM PST

    •  Condiliar has never been so true. (4.00)
      I am incredulous every time someone asks her if she plans on running for President.  Why would anyone want her to run?  Her brazen bullshitting?  Her bending the truth? Her precisely worded statements that say nothing?

      I give her credit for poise and thinking on her feet.  But the only reason anyone should believe the words that come out of her mouth is because they want to.  The rest of us should retain lawyers, language specialists and reference librarians to fact check everything she says.

      •  I've always had a knack for evaluating (4.00)
        the words of others. This administration has driven me up the wall since day one by their careful phraseology used to lie but not lie. They seldom state the lie outright, they just lead everyone right up to the edge of it then allow us to jump to false conclusions.

        -6.88/-5.64 Murtha on Bush: "Undermining his credibility? What has he said that would give him credibility?"

        by John West on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:53:01 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It shows an awareness. (none)
          It drove me up a wall when we were looking for the Bushco lies and the actual record showed that they almost always came nanometers close to outright lies but never actually crossed the line.  

          Then it became clearer and clearer to me that they did this quite deliberately.  The soundbite media would repeat the 'smoking gun' and 'mushroom cloud' memes until they were Known Truths.  If Bushco had hard proof or staunch allies they wouldn't needed to play these games.  It was a sign of weakness, not a show of strength.  Hindsight is 20/20.

  •  The one statement of Bush's (none)
    that lingers in my mind as perfectly describing him is from when he toured the Middle-East in the early wake of the Abu-Ghraib revelations. To try to save some of his and America's face he blurted:

    "These atrocities will be dealt with. We have laws on the book in America. That ought to comfort you!"

    Prizeless!

    Restore Democracy! Denounce the GOP (George Orwell's Party)!

    by high5 on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 04:07:52 AM PST

  •  Thank goodness (none)
    for the voices of Derrick Jackson and James Carrol in the Globe. They are the conciences of the paper. And as you clearly show here, Jackson is great at condemning them with their own words. If you read him regularly, he is also very good at at using statistics to make his point. He's been on Bush from the very beginning, and I'm glad his voice is being more widely heard: he deserves the kudos and attention.

    Hostage smiles on presidents, freedom scribbled in the subway. It's like night and day. - Joni Mitchell

    by jazzlover on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 04:16:35 AM PST

  •  A+ (4.00)
    Thanks yet again for yet another diary that is like a vitamin for my brain.

    Because cognitive dissonance is a terrible thing to waste...

    by 7rob7 on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 04:19:18 AM PST

  •  Recommended: I am really in a funk... (4.00)
    For them to be condemned by their own words, America must step up and listen and ask questions... Bu$hCo spews this disingenuous nonsense about open dialogue being healthy for the country and slinks away again into the bowels of their torture bunkers... Nobody calls them on it... I had high hopes of the Europeans asking tough questions, but it looks like Condiliar gets a pass... America , and now the world apparently, still doesn't want to hear or face any of this...

    I may have to walk away from all this for a while...  start packing my bags for Gitmo... How do you satirize insanity?

    Dudehisattva...

    "Generosity, Ethics, Patience, Effort, Concentration, and Wisdom"

    by Dood Abides on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 04:38:39 AM PST

    •  It's easy to satirize insanity (4.00)
      Just look at the literature that flowered under communism. From Solzhenytsen to Havel, they captured the effort of trying to survive amidst a world of lies and propaganda.

      One of my favorite protest groups from the communist era was Czechoslovakia's Committee for A Merrier Present. They would organize demonstrations in Prague and Bratislava where the demonstrators would wear watermelons on their head and swing cucumbers on a string. There was NO political content to their protest, so the authorities couldn't really arrest them. They were just surreal and bizarre and used that to attack the system.

      I'm beginning to think we need something like that here.

      - "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
      - REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

      by Hoya90 on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:32:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Dood (4.00)
      "I may have to walk away from all this for a while...  start packing my bags for Gitmo... How do you satirize insanity?"

      I have it on good authortiy that Gitmo is a little booked for the season -- all the best dank, blood-stained dungeons are reserved WAY in advance by Cheney.

      More seriouswise -- I don't know you personally, of course, Dood, but I think it's smart to take care of one's mental and spiritual health.  So if you need a break, take one.  But please do come back.  Your photoshopped art is always good for our souls, here.

      I was flipping through David Rees' second volume of GET YOUR WAR ON the other day, and I actually noticed that a lot of his brilliant cartoons deal with exactly what you're talking about:  how do you keep going on, and working, and trying to stave off existential despair when this evil bunch of people keep getting away with their epic lies, mostly unquestioned.

      The only answer I've come up with is to take periodic breaks from the fight, refresh yourself, and come back with renewed strength.  But I empathize with your sentiment, above.  Very familiar to me.

      •  Gitmo & Catholic Workers (none)
        Let's hope this has some effect:

        Catholic Workers march on Guantanamo.

        It's a small group, but we have some Americans protesting the practices at Gitmo who have actually taken the trouble to go to Cuba and get themselves some press.  The site has links to AP, NYTimes, and some other stories about the march - keep an eye on your local news, or better yet see if you can get them to provide some coverage.

        O it is excellent to have a giant's strength: but it is tyrannous to use it like a giant. --Measure for Measure, II.2

        by RogueStage on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 01:43:24 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The muppets in military garb (none)
      was one of the greatest political photoshops ever (from 10/14)...a true masterpiece. But only slightly above your lofty average.

      We all know comedians are the most sensitive of all...and they should in turn know how much they are appreciated, whether being funny or serious.

      The dark at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming age.

      by peeder on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 09:17:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I have sort of a genre question. (4.00)
    I've read a lot of reviews or whatever this diary is supposed to be of columns. I appreciate that this is a blog and it's common practice just to give links and highlight particularly poignant passages, but there is a couple things I don't understand:

    1. Why the instructive tone? This reads not so much as a pointer to something interesting, but as a guide to how to read it.

    2. In a similar vein, why is so much attention devoted to exclaiming just how great the column is? Presumably, the reader will know you are keen on it simply because you wrote it. I know most other blogs I read are much more subdued in their praise of authors they quote -- it creates a feel of sobriety when you simply say "an excellent column by whoever in whatever publication." Phrases like "Jackson's skillful collection" and "one of the best op-ed writers around" are probably a bit over the top and create the opposite impression, but they alone aren't that big of a deal. What really struck me was the lone sentence: "Reading the words is powerful." -- I mean, the short, bluntness of this brings the reader to a full stop. I just found it really bizarre to see in print. Especially since to the target audience, the column isn't really a revelation.

    I don't want to seem overly critical here, since I think it's certainly a worthwhile column, I'm just saying that I see a lot of this "genre" of writing around here and my guess is that it some adjustment would probably lead to it being taken more seriously.
    •  Ammo (none)
      These sorts of diaries provide ammo for arguing with repub family/coworkers.

      "Sometimes I think we're alone. Sometimes I think we're not. In either case, the thought is staggering." - R. Buckminster Fuller -5.88/-5.23

      by Shadan7 on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 06:01:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yep. (none)
      Any time I see the phrase "simply put" appear, I think that the author is being condescending.  When I see it repeated in the same article, I feel that the author is saying "You're too fucking stupid to figure this stuff out for yourself, so I'm going have to spell it out for you, numbnuts."  

      This comment, like Molly's, is more to genre, than to teacherken in particular, as I usually like his diaries.  In cases like this, though, I'd much rather see a link to the article itself, rather than having it "simply" regurgitated.

      •  there is a link at the beginning (none)
        and since I am commenting on part of the article, and my focus is on Jackson's iuse of quotes, I felt that my approach was appropriate.   Of course you can disagree.

        As for the repetivieness of the phrase, a bit of carelessness on my part -- I did not rearead the entire piece because I was rushed for time before leaving for school  -- I do not diary on school computer or network, although I may offer a comment such as this

        as to how you interpret that prhase, that is the problem with the choice of any language  - it is often subject to different interpretations, sometimes not at all what the author inteded.

        Those who can, do. Those who can do more, TEACH!

        by teacherken on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:33:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  asdf (none)
    How instructive of you
  •  CNN Special Report: "Dead Wrong" (none)
    I have posted this link previously, but I'm sure many people missed it.  Back in August, and replayed several times since then, CNN broadcast an hour-long program which was organized by David Ensor and which used video clips of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and other administration figures making various statements, countered by comments from various critics.

    Here's a link to the transcript of that program, which was titled "Dead Wrong":
    http://transcripts.cnn.com/... .

    We're all in this together.

    by JTML on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:48:59 AM PST

    •  Aaron Brown's staff replayed it (none)
      After Aaron Brown was fired by CNN, his staff replayed "Dead Wrong" during one of the last two hours that his former program aired.

      I don't know whether it has appeared on CNN again since that Friday.

      We're all in this together.

      by JTML on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 05:55:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  right to the heart of (none)
    Rick Perlstein's speech the other day.  They spout these ideals, but believe that the end justifies the means.  So their approach is justified in their eyes.  It really does explain how they govern.
  •  There Are No American Soldiers In Baghdad (none)
    Truth and political power rarely reside in the same place.

    The notion that a politician's words can be used against them is only true if the politician is going down anyway.

     

    This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

    by Mr X on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 06:05:42 AM PST

  •  Nicely put., TeacherKen. Keep 'em coming. (none)
    Thought you might find this to be significant, too - it was first posted for the 2004 elections, I believe.

    The Battle for America

    Personally, I think it's a "must see" for all Kossacks, and should be shared as a poignant reminder to all those who claim to be "Patriotic Americans". Particularly, those who make such a claim while accusing us - the dissenters - of being traitors.

    Please keep up the good work. I've pointed many current and former educators (as well as non-educators) to your words, and expect to continue doing so.

  •  One cannot fight them with language. (4.00)
    They use language as a weapon.  All that "honor and dignity" crap was scripted as a winning counter to Clinton's proxy.  They do not speak the truth;  they never have.  Their use of language is not communicative or conversational.  They do not meet us or their other enemies on a level field of battle in the arena of ideas.

    They use language to confound.  They use language to delay judgement, to defer further discussion to another day (at which point they have moved on).  They use language to obscure their intentions and blur the meaning of their actions.

    This is an active, studied use of language.  This is what you get if you spend billions on propaganda research (known in Republican NewSpeech as "think tanks")  This is a nearly unstoppable verbal juggernaut.  When it comes to confronting them in a court of law, they will resort to tantrums and declarations that the court is illegal.  We have seen this done this week, both in this country and abroad.

    I applaud Derrick Jackson for throwing their words back at them,and thank TeacherKen for amplifying them here.  We need more of this.  We also need to not let them speak even one full sentence without immediately examining it and questioning their meaning.  Do we not torture?  Would the average Joe think of it as torture?  Who is we?  How about last year?  Why are they no longer on European soil?  The war is "worthwhile" Mr. President?  How do you define "worthwhile"?  How many dead?  How much money?  Who collected the evidence?  Can you corroborate that?  References please.  What, again, is the connection between 9/11 and Iraq?  There was NO connection?  How did that justify spending a nation's fortune there?  Once again, what do you mean by "worthwhile"?

    The WH press corps should be in open revolt.  Do they not sell tomatoes or eggs in Washington?  "Scottie, you're a lying sack of shill for a lying corrupt gang of thieves who can't won't and don't govern.  Your presence is an insult to the press and an insult to language.  STFU!"

    Headline:  WH Press sec'y refuses to answer simple questions.

    Does anyone remember the "W" keys story?  That the "rowdy, immature" Clinton gang vandalized WH computer keyboards by pulling off the W keys before they left?  This got fairly wide play in the MSM -- it makes a good story, and fell right in with the "restore dignity" crap the Republicans were shoveling.  Except it wasn't true.  None of it.  Just another, early example of two things:  they lie.  And they project their own degeneracy onto those they perceive as enemies.

    In sum:  They lie.  They lie when they open their eyes in the morning.  They lie when they relieve themselves.  They think up more lies when they sip their coffee.  They test their lies on focus groups.  They use the media like a catapult to spread their lies across America.  They provide the message, and they help wind the machine.  They do this in America, and they do this abroad (as we just found out).  Lying is what they do.  It is the sum total of their work.  It is a nearly complete distillation of George Bush's character.  He and they will continue to lie tonight.  They will lie tomorrow.  They will lie in court.  They will lie in their graves.  Their very gravestones will lie.

    Stop them now.  Question every noun and every verb.  Force them to speak in facts.  Accept no utterance unchallenged.

    The strategy is not to "reframe the debate".  There is no debate w. liars.  The strategy is to splinter the frame of lies with the moral authority of simple truths.  The war is failing.  The pretense was false.  The expense is stupid. Their governance is theft.

    -5.13;-6.92 Slap George Bush awake from his wet dream, he is not the "oberster Gerichtsherr"

    by Yellow Canary on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 06:59:45 AM PST

    •  Best comment I've read in awhile. (none)
      Have a 4.  And thanks.
    •  Strength and Persistence... (none)
      One of the most accurate and relevant commentaries I've read, YC.  I have espoused the very same issues, but not quite so eloquently.

      As we the people expose more and more of the never-ending stream of theocon lies, perhaps those foolish enough to remain supporters of this WPE will soon awaken and cease arguing against their own best interests.

      My personal motivation is the well-being of my kids and their kids.  Though I fear historians will define US govt policy and social culture of 1980-2009 with a single word: greed, it is my hope that we boomers still have time to rise from these dark times and leave the environment, the economy, public education and our health system in better shape than our parents left for us.

      As you emote in your commentary, YC, us liberals need to keep in mind the kinder, gentler, yet just as forceful precursor to Elliott Spitzer's "Choose your weapon" quote:

      "Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never--in nothing, great or small, large or petty--never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense."  Winston Churchill 29Oct1941

      There is just as much at stake today for America as there was for the British 64 years ago.

      -4.38, -6.21

    •  "Question every noun and every verb. " (none)
      Agreed, but let's not forget adjectives, adverbs, pronouns, prepositions, and even conjunctions.
    •  Great rant........ (none)
      I feel less alone.  Thanks.

      "He that sees but does not bear witness, be accursed" Book of Jubilees

      by Lying eyes on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 01:51:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Derrick Jackson (none)
    makes it almost tolerable that the Globe continues to employ Jeff Jacoby whose editorial yesterday was just about the most disgusting thing I've read all year.
  •  Excellent Comment (none)
    From your mouth to the ears of the press corp.
  •  As Murtha put it on the Today Show yesterday (none)
    "Just because they say so doesn't mean it's true."

    I may have paraphrased it a little, but it hit the [lack of] crediblity of BushCo right on the head.

    "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter." Dr. ML King, from a jail cell in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963.

    by bewert on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 07:51:28 AM PST

  •  "CLEAN SWEEP" is the (none)
    campaign slogan for 2006.

    "LET THE TRIALS BEGIN" is the bumper-sticker for 2007.

    If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

    by HenryDavid on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:08:34 AM PST

  •  "prisoners held (none)
    without charge for years"

    Article I Section 8 of the US Constitution provides that "The Congress shall have the power .... to declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water."

    The US Constitution explicitly allows for captures of possible enemies.

    Prisoners of war are traditionally not charged, because they are simply warriors and not criminals.

    Confederate warriors and the Vietcong warriors often spent years in US run prisoner of war camps.

  •  "ghost detainees, CIA secret prisons" (none)
    To be entitled to Geneva Convention protections, warriors must carry weapons out in the open.

    Terrorist suicide bombers hide their bombs under clothing, in bags, and in cars.

    If terrorists don't wish to carry their weapons out in the open, the US should not feel obliged to hold terrorists out in the open.

    •  so you tell me how many of those (4.00)
      at Abu Ghraib or Guantanomo or Bagram or elsewhere were even carying ANY weapons, much less materials such as you describe?  You cmment is really not responsive to the points Jackson makes.

      Those who can, do. Those who can do more, TEACH!

      by teacherken on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:34:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The folks in the CIA secret prisons (none)
        are probably in for different reasons than those in Abu Ghraib or Guantanomo or Bagram.

        The CIA prisoners are probably guys tied to actual or planned terrorist attacks. These people are found by E-mails and other means.

        The Abu Ghraib or Guantanomo or Bagram are mainly guys found on battlefields carrying guns out in the open in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many of these people actually meet Geneva Convention requirements.  

        I quoted Jackson. You switched the subject from "ghost detainees, CIA secret prisons" to well-known prisons like "Abu Ghraib or Guantanomo or Bagram." You then accuse me of not addressing Jackson's points.

        The quote "ghost detainees" consists of "ghost" and "detainees". I was merely trying to show that the Constitution of the United States authorizes people to be made "detainees" on non-criminal grounds.

    •  warriors? (none)
      So, to avoid Gitmo, somebody walking down the wrong road in Afghanistan would have to be carrying a rifle? That would make it just fine with us? Ha.

      The Geneva Conventions also apply to civilians.

      To quote from Convention IV:


      (1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria.

      To this end the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons: (a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture; (b) taking of hostages; (c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment; (d) the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples.

      And how do you tell the difference between an unarmed civilian and a covert terrorist caught without his bomb?

      How about a hearing to review facts and evidence?

      OK, we need +6 in the Senate and +16 in the House. Put your game face on and get to work!

      by uffdalib on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 09:23:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Typically a chemical is sprayed (none)
        on a suspect's hands that reveals if a suspect has fired a weapon recently.

        Very simple, very effective.

        Scientifically based.

      •  There is no (none)
        "passing of sentences" and no "carrying out of executions" so there is no need
        for a "previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples."

        I agree that the real problems of degrading treatment need to be stopped. You shouldn't make guys wear women's underwear.

        •  Sentence (none)
          I use the Random House Dictionary copyrighted in 1978 and edited by Jess Stein and P.Y. Su.

          It includes these applicable definitions of sentence:
          2. Law a. the judicial determination of punishment.
          b. the punishment itself.

          Prisoners of war are normally locked up to keep them out of combat and not to punish them.

      •  You've also switched subjects (none)
        I was talking about "ghost detainees, CIA secret prisons" that Jackson mentioned.

        You start off mentioning a well-known prison: "So, to avoid Gitmo."

  •  It's Merely OK If You're a Republican (none)
    But these guys are Christians too.

    That wins them the whole dominion.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 08:32:38 AM PST

  •  But Bush & Rice talk about (none)
    other country's human rights abuses as if OUR Sh** don't stink!
  •  Good thing we have Condi! (none)
    cross-posted at Liberal Elite

    The AFP headline was:  

      Rice "Clears Air" over CIA row with Europe
    .

    Usually we can count on AFP to give us a little bit of a brighter view of these things--but not here.  

    "It was a good discussion. I think it cleared the air," said NATO chief Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, referring to a dinner Wednesday night gathering Rice with her NATO and EU colleagues.
    That would be the "Torture Dinner with Rice."
    Specifically Rice said that Washington's obligations under an international convention prohibiting cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment "extend to US personnel wherever they are, whether they are in the US or outside the US."

    She reiterated that message in Brussels. "We recognize our obligations, our policy recognizes our obligations, whether activities are undertaken inside the United States or outside the United States," told reporters.

     What she failed to point out is that even though we recognize our obligations, we can't always manage to live up to them 100%--nobody's perfect.  Furthermore, when our detainees are imprisoned on foreign soil, our obligations don't really extend as far as they would on "homeland" (read, "Fatherland") soil.  In fact, if somebody is in jail under the jurisdiction of one of our noble coalition partners, all we can do is pray and beseech them not to torture the guys.

    So you see we live up to OUR obligations, and we try to extend them to foreign soil, even though, as in countless recent cases, that has proven to be impossible.

    The Washington Post, in a piece today by Kessler and White, tried to put the best face of the Secretary of State's remarks.  But they went on to say,

    The Bush administration has long said that the U.S. government will not engage in torture. But it has argued in the past that restrictions on cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment do not apply outside U.S. territory.

    Before she left for Europe on Monday, Rice issued a detailed statement on U.S. policy on treatment of prisoners, intending to dampen the furor on the continent. She said, among other things, that "the United States government does not authorize or condone torture of detainees." But she did not define torture.

    Lame duckism.  Nobody believes them anymore.  No matter what they say, nobody will believe them.

  •  Would make a great documentary... (none)
    ..like CNN's "Dead Wrong" mentioned earlier and "Uncovered: The truth about IRAQ" played out the whole "sell the war" marketing campaign and all the lies. But if someone just played all the lies one after the other countered with the truth and the facts it would make a compelling library of the lies of Bushco.
     The one that stands out to me is Condaleeza Rice stating that the US had proof that Bin Laden was behind 9-11 and would release that evidence at a later date. Have they ever showed actual proof beside that horribly fake confession tape they "found" conveniently left in a house in Afghanistan?
     If we don't have evidence and proof that it was Bin Laden then Afghanistan is also an illegal war based on twisted facts and lies.
     

    "Patriotism is loving your country always and your government when it deserves it"-Mark Twain

    by fool me once umm on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 10:38:05 AM PST

  •  2 T's (none)
    I lack the Talent and Time, but it would be interesting to see each lie, from pre-2000 election through today, set down on tape. With a chronological listing, the appropriate piece could be brought up and played every time they start up their lying shit machine.

    Common Sense is not Common

    by RustyBrown on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 11:18:34 AM PST

  •  Since the secret prisons don't exist (none)
    There will be no problem should one or more of the European powers destroy them, once they are located.

    After all, it's not as if they exist.

    Americans All, True and Blue: The Redshirts Violent Come For You.

    by cskendrick on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 11:51:56 AM PST

  •  "'We want to restore honor and integrity (none)
    to the White House."

    The Onion had an great article before Bush/Cheney stole the WH a second time:

    "Addressing guests at a $2,000-a-plate fundraiser, George W. Bush pledged Monday that, if re-elected in November, he and running mate Dick Cheney will 'restore honor and dignity to the White House.'"

  •  Well done teacherken! (none)

    I beg you leave me restless, I live with the impossible ocean and silence bleeds me dry!

    by dangangry on Thu Dec 08, 2005 at 02:12:14 PM PST

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