Thursday, June 07, 2007

Can we please stop with the lies?

Number One. Valerie Plame wasn’t a covert agent.
If the CIA testifies in court that she was covert, which they DID, then SHE WAS. Those who continue to repeat that talking point in an attempt to mislead lie to the American public only look stupid. It’s in the court record. Duh.

Number Two. Scooter Libby’s trial was a farce, he’s innocent, and there was no underlying crime.
At this point, I beg you; at least be consistent. He lied. This was proved once again, in court. That’s what he was charged, convicted, and sentenced for. Do NOT claim it is a trivial matter or that because there was no indictment on the underlying crime it doesn’t count. It sure counted for Clinton. It was a matter of supreme importance that he lied under oath then, despite there being no charges in that underlying alleged crime. The rules are not different for Republicans vs Democrats. Obstruction of Justice is a crime precisely because it keeps the underlying crime from being investigated.

The recent indictment of William Jefferson was a striking juxtaposition to the furor over Scooter Libby, for anyone willing to pay attention. No one denies that there are corrupt politicians in both parties; after all, we all know power corrupts. Look, however, at the difference in how these people were dealt with in their own parties. Not one person in the Democratic Party made excuses for him. No one tried to cover it up, or blame someone else. Instead, as soon as it was made public, the Speaker asked him to resign from his committee positions immediately. If he is convicted, he will leave office. Now consider Tom Delay. Scooter Libby. Duke Cunningham, Jack Abramoff, David Safavian et al.

Number Three. We must win this war.
There is no war. War was never declared. Why is that, one wonders? It’s because there cannot be a war on a tactic. Terrorism is a tactic, not an entity, not a government. (This same rationale applies to the misguided wars on drugs, on crime, and on poverty). If any of this debacle can be called war, it ended with the overthrow of Saddam and the “Mission Accomplished” banner. Our soldiers did what they were asked to do in ousting Saddam. Anything after that is occupation. One can NOT win an occupation. One can manage an occupation, as we did so well after WWII, but it requires a much higher ratio of soldier to civilian than this Administration has been willing to consider. Hence we play “Whack-a-Mole” and more of our soldiers die daily.

Number Four. If you disagree with the President’s policy, you’re a “bad American.”
This is the most divisive, the most subversive, the most heinous attitude I can imagine. It goes against the most basic tenet of our country’s beliefs. Telling me that I hate America because my opinion differs from yours is not only insulting, it’s dangerous. Our country was built on dissent. It’s not a happenstance that freedom of speech is the FIRST amendment to our Constitution. One might posit that someone willing to speak out against abuses by elected officials and fight for the Constitution loves their country more than one giving support to an administration run amok.

This is another case where the attitude of Neo-cons and Progressives show marked differences. As progressives, we fight for your right to disagree with us. We want you to be informed on all issues, from all sides. We want you to speak your mind. We want you to vote. We think that such dialog improves our society. The right wing pundits want you to believe what you’re told. They know what’s good for you. They discourage discourse. They place impediments to voting. They restrict your access to information to keep you focused on what they want you thinking about. Above all, they do not want you to think for yourself.

We who disagree with the President’s Iraq policy do not hate America. We don’t want Al Qaeda to “win.” We do not rejoice when things go badly over there. It’s insulting to be told we are traitors, aiding the enemy. This is a lie that hurts America, as it further divides us, making it harder to find solutions. It’s wrong, and it needs to stop.

Number Five. The Left Wing Media.
This is another Duh moment. All one needs to do here is take a look at who owns the big media conglomerates. Almost exclusively they’re owned by very rich, very white, very male conservatives. Then take a short look at the stories that DON”T get covered. Like Monica mentioning “caging” in her testimony, which has barely even been mentioned in the MSM. Like the focus on the really important issues of our day, Paris Hilton and Britney Spears and Anna Nicole Smith. It has become a full time job to ferret out the information that is vital to really understand what is going on in the United States right now, and one must often turn to external sources such as the BBC get what is being hidden from Americans.

No, I’m not an advocate of the Fairness Doctrine. I do believe in the Free Market approach, but our current system is faulty. The Free Market can’t prevail when all programming is controlled by FIVE people who carefully slant what they allow on the airwaves. If a progressive isn’t given a chance to earn market share, that is not a free market. That amounts to censorship. Welcome to The Third Reich America.

I'm really not done ranting, but my stomach is roiling, so the rest will have to wait. Blech.