I can't do it. Maybe it's the cough medication talking. Maybe it's the season. Maybe it's the knowledge that we're about to launch into a new presidency which seems already, by many of the most important measures, to be destined for either completely out-in-the-open Republican insanity or fear-spangled Democratic timidity. But I have Outrage Overload, and I can't manage anything pithy to say about the current environment that doesn't involve just climbing the nearest church steeple and swearing at the top of my lungs.
Let's review the stories currently on the radar.
(1) The Wapo publishes completely false smears against Obama -- truly, the most poorly premised and written article I have seen since half past forever. Akin to what the Swiftboat Vet stories would have been, if the Swiftboat Vets had not even been seasoned Republican operatives but just "some paranoid guy ranting incoherently from his South Carolina basement." Truly, the story reads like something plagiarized from the racist Human Events and rewritten into "Washington Post journalism" format just barely enough to make it by the apparently heavily drugged editors.
(2) Rove, trying an instance of the Great Conservative Walkback against... well, himself... claims the Democrats goaded Bush into the Iraq War. This was apparently not done on a dare, or while under the influence of drugs, though it was done under the influence of Rove-style conservative Republicanism. Whatever, I don't know: but this is the sort of insane claim for which tarring and feathering was invented. Can we please bring it back? I know, I know, I have previously written against torture. I've changed my mind. If you can't torture someone for attempting to alter the fabric of spacetime through the power of their own proclamatory farts, then this world is no longer worth living in.
(3) Oh, this is wonderful. No, really. We find out that Rudy had the fuckin' city of New York provide an official city-paid Booty Call Car And Driver Set for his secret non-wifely hump buddy. Seriously, he had the city provide his mistress a car and police driver. And, upon learning all of this, which managed to stay under the radar for years and years in spite of being trivally easy to suss out and presumably a felony to boot, we're sitting here wondering if the media is going to get off their asses and bother to give two shits, since they don't have their usual Republican faxes telling them how to push the story... since presumably, the Republican faxes right now all have to do with whether or not Barack Obama got muslim cooties from some brown-looking kid in second grade, which is far more important.
(4) Supposedly intelligent Democratic presidential contender Hillary Clinton says "yeah, that Colin Powell is a guy worth listening to!", under the apparent premise that the one guy singularly and most famously known for having the Most Total Lifetime Opportunities To Do The Right Thing During A Complete Clusterfuck Without Ever Goddamn Actually Doing It Even Once Even While Every Shred Of His Own Integrity Got Shoveled Into George W. Bush's Boxer Shorts in fact represents the kind of moderation and foreign policy "bipartisanship" worth the attention of Democrats.
No, this is what seriously counts as "reasonable", these days, even among prominent Democrats. You don't actually have to do the right thing. You don't have to do the right thing when given one opportunity, or two, or five, or twenty. You just have to be declared the guy who seems like the guy most likely to maybe have done the right thing, except that you didn't, and that's all it takes. That's "moderation". That's being an "intelligent voice", among the crew of the biggest ship of fools ever to set sail from the confines of their own hollow heads. That's enough to get all the Broders and, god help me, Clintons of the world saying by golly, that's what we need. After seven years of complete, disasterous clusterfuckery, the right thing to do would be to have an administration that is willing to take equal parts sensible policy and total clusterfuckery, adds them together, and we're done! Instant reasonableness!
And then we should torture half the people we normally do, and restore half the rights that should be restored, and help half the Americans that need our help, and get into half as many disastrously mismanaged trillion-dollar wars, and fix half the budget, and indict only half the criminals, and the entire Washington establishment will come to a shattering, orgasmic printed climax in honor of such reasonableness and bipartisanship. Equal parts insanity plus non-insanity equals, in Washington eyes, the only approach worthy of respect. God help you if you try anything more.
Because there's nothing you can do to be discredited, these days. And nothing Colin Powell ever did -- or pointedly prevented himself from doing -- will reflect in the slightest upon him.
(5) Joe Klein continues to walk the earth unraped by drunken bears. This is evidence enough for me to doubt the existence of God.
(6) Oh -- and some Democratic-leaning military guy asked a question about teh gays at a Republican debate, thus rending the well-constructed Fortress of Republitude asunder, and causing all the Petraeus-loving patriots of the right to suddenly wonder if maybe military folks might be traitorous opinionated bastards injecting themselves into politics after all.
Does that about cover it? No, it doesn't. It's not even half.
I mean, what the Holy. Porcine. Fuck???
To hell with being polite about any of this -- apparently there's no point. To hell with trying to make the press "better", or trying to keep Republicans "honest", or pretending that Democrats are anything more than the battered spouses of their own bunglefucked advisors and consultants and hangers on and punditorial freebased stupidity pushers.
Right now I just want to run every last reporter and politician on earth through a cheese grater.
Maybe it's the damn season.