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political rant- warning

sanderson's picture

What more can I say...


August 10, 2005


Why No Tea and Sympathy?

By MAUREEN DOWD


WASHINGTON


W. can't get no satisfaction on Iraq.


There's an angry mother of a dead soldier camping outside his Crawford ranch, demanding to see a president who prefers his sympathy to be carefully choreographed.


A new CNN-USA Today-Gallup poll shows that a majority of Americans now think that going to war was a mistake and that the war has made the U.S. more vulnerable to terrorism. So fighting them there means it's more likely we'll have to fight them here?


Donald Rumsfeld acknowledged yesterday that sophisticated bombs were streaming over the border from Iran to Iraq.


And the Rolling Stones have taken a rare break from sex odes to record an antiwar song called "Sweet Neo Con," chiding Condi Rice and Mr. Bush. "You call yourself a Christian; I call you a hypocrite," Mick Jagger sings.


The N.F.L. put out a press release on Monday announcing that it's teaming up with the Stones and ABC to promote "Monday Night Football." The flag-waving N.F.L. could still back out if there's pressure, but the mood seems to have shifted since Madonna chickened out of showing an antiwar music video in 2003. The White House used to be able to tamp down criticism by saying it hurt our troops, but more people are asking the White House to explain how it plans to stop our troops from getting hurt.


Cindy Sheehan, a 48-year-old Californian with a knack for P.R., says she will camp out in the dusty heat near the ranch until she gets to tell Mr. Bush face to face that he must pull all U.S. troops out of Iraq. Her son, Casey, a 24-year-old Army specialist, was killed in a Sadr City ambush last year.


The president met with her family two months after Casey's death. Capturing W.'s awkwardness in traversing the line between somber and joking, and his love of generic labels, Ms. Sheehan said that W. had referred to her as "Mom" throughout the meeting, and given her the sense that he did not know who her son was.


The Bush team tried to discredit "Mom" by pointing reporters to an old article in which she sounded kinder to W. If only her husband were an undercover C.I.A. operative, the Bushies could out him. But even if they send out a squad of Swift Boat Moms for Truth, there will be a countering Falluja Moms for Truth.


It's amazing that the White House does not have the elementary shrewdness to have Mr. Bush simply walk down the driveway and hear the woman out, or invite her in for a cup of tea. But W., who has spent nearly 20 percent of his presidency at his ranch, is burrowed into his five-week vacation and two-hour daily workouts. He may be in great shape, but Iraq sure isn't.


It's hard to think of another president who lived in such meta-insulation. His rigidly controlled environment allows no chance encounters with anyone who disagrees. He never has to defend himself to anyone, and that is cognitively injurious. He's a populist who never meets people - an ordinary guy who clears brush, and brush is the only thing he talks to. Mr. Bush hails Texas as a place where he can return to his roots. But is he mixing it up there with anyone besides Vulcans, Pioneers and Rangers?


W.'s idea of consolation was to dispatch Stephen Hadley, the national security adviser, to talk to Ms. Sheehan, underscoring the inhumane humanitarianism of his foreign policy. Mr. Hadley is just a suit, one of the hard-line Unsweet Neo Cons who helped hype America into this war.


It's getting harder for the president to hide from the human consequences of his actions and to control human sentiment about the war by pulling a curtain over the 1,835 troops killed in Iraq; the more than 13,000 wounded, many shorn of limbs; and the number of slain Iraqi civilians - perhaps 25,000, or perhaps double or triple that. More people with impeccable credentials are coming forward to serve as a countervailing moral authority to challenge Mr. Bush.


Paul Hackett, a Marine major who served in Iraq and criticized the president on his conduct of the war, narrowly lost last week when he ran for Congress as a Democrat in a Republican stronghold in Cincinnati. Newt Gingrich warned that the race should "serve as a wake-up call to Republicans" about 2006.


Selectively humane, Mr. Bush justified his Iraq war by stressing the 9/11 losses. He emphasized the humanity of the Iraqis who desire freedom when his W.M.D. rationale vaporized.


But his humanitarianism will remain inhumane as long as he fails to understand that the moral authority of parents who bury children killed in Iraq is absolute.


 

MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #1 of 216)

I so want to go to Crawford and join her, but I'm embarrassed to say I'm afraid of the impact it might have on me and my family, particularly my DSIL.  What does that say about our country?



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

samchang's picture

(post #43938, reply #2 of 216)

And the more W tries to explain himself and his not wanting to meet with Ms. Sheehan, the worse he looks, and the more questions he opens up. So we won't leave till the mission's accomplished. But what mission were we meant to do in the first place? And how, amidst our underwhelming achievement in Iraq, do we measure any so-called 'accomplishment?'

shywoodlandcreature's picture

(post #43938, reply #3 of 216)

Sanderson, I'm so glad you posted this. I've been following the Sheehan story for a couple of weeks now. Is she the Rosa Parks of the anti-war (Iraqi division) movement? I certainly hope so. I'm rooting for her. And I'm hoping the MSM is finally getting off its collective @ss and starting to ask some real questions in search of some real answers. I can't believe they've let the Downing Street memos just die on the vine.

MadMom - and everybody else who feels frustrated because they can't join Sheehan in her vigil - I suggest we all make as generous a contribution to help sustain her as we can. If she does indeed get arrested, she'll need some high-priced legal defense.





"...very little has ever been accomplished by complacent people." Billmon


http://costofwar.com/

Wolvie's picture

(post #43938, reply #15 of 216)

as much as I hate it, I don't think we can just walk away from the chaos we've created over there. We have to stabilize it somehow. We need help from others tho, no doubt about that.


I think the best thing W could do would be to grow a pair and admit he was wrong to go, even admit he cooked the books a bit to get us there, and that he is sorry for his error.  (Never happen, but - one can dream).


I just can't get over the fact that the American people elected this guy - given all the info we had about how he lied to get us into Irag, knowing we hadn't finished our job in Afghanistan, etc. Just unreal to me. Dumbing down with W at it's best, and very sad/scary.



How clever you are my dear, you never mean a single thing you say


Oscar Wilde 





 

 

ChefRobert's picture

(post #43938, reply #23 of 216)

Wolvie wrote: as much as I hate it, I don't think we can just walk away from the chaos we've created over there. We have to stabilize it somehow. We need help from others tho, no doubt about that.


That would be ideal, but there is never going to be stabilization in Iraq without a despot.  The ethnic hatred within the country goes back centuries and will not go away at the command of GWB.  One hope for some stability might be three separate nations - Kurd, Shiite and Sunni.  However, that would be difficult since there would be gross economic differences between the traditional homelands which would just lead to another civil war.
In some ways this mess that Dubya and his ill-advised advisors have gotten us into reminds me of Southeast Asia.  A no-win situation that was the result of not listening to those who were well versed in Southeast Asian culture, including the French who were decimated at Diem Bien Phu in the spring of 1954.  The political leaders in this country appear to have deaf-ears when it comes to intelligent advise about not getting involved in areas of the world they know little or nothing about.  Chef Robert


What do you mean there is no chocolate in this recipe!

What do you mean there is no chocolate in this recipe!

MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #24 of 216)

Unfortunately, the neocons either grossly misjudged the situation, or they were just so anxious to get into a war, any war, that they led us willingly to slaughter.  It has been obvious there was no exit strategy.  Dubya prancing around an aircraft carrier in a flight suit under the "Mission Accomplished" sign didn't end the war.  The people of Iraq didn't greet us joyfully and sing our praises for getting rid of Saddam.  For some silly reason, most of them seem to be more interested in living their lives without the threat of death, with some modicum of modern comforts (water, electricity) and without an occupying army.  I'm getting so tired of the excuses.  First, it was WMD, then it was getting rid of Saddam, and now it's "we can't just leave the mess we've made."  When will the American people get tired of the body bags and decide that it's time to get out?  Perhaps only when the body bag contains someone they love.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Mimi's picture

(post #43938, reply #25 of 216)

ChefRobert:  You have made an interesting point.  Until very recently, post WWII, each tribe ruled its own section of the desert and there was no unifying flag, country or ruler.  To expect the citizens to go from the tribal customs of a millenium to modern democracy in just over fifty years is ridiculous. 


GWB created this current chaos.  It seems to be the whole point of his presidency.  No matter what the price, he will continue to defend his father's honor, even if that price includes our sons and daughters.


mimi

"All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
sanderson's picture

(post #43938, reply #26 of 216)

Not to defend the arrogant bastards that got us into this war, but if we didn't do it, given the volume of oil there, someone else would be imposing a stability in the area instead of us.  Until we face the absolute fact that a petroleum based world is doomed to the horrors of extremely limited supply in the face of gluttonous demand this warring will continue.  In Irac, Russia, Alaska, anywhere there may be deposits of petroleum.  Has anyone heard any news regarding the fusion experiments in France? 

~~Heather's picture

(post #43938, reply #27 of 216)

It's a mess indeed and today His Bushness made noises about military action in Iran--he is insane.

Wolvie's picture

(post #43938, reply #29 of 216)

I think he's certifiable.


and impeachable.



How clever you are my dear, you never mean a single thing you say


Oscar Wilde 





 

 

KathiM's picture

(post #43938, reply #91 of 216)

He has been talking about war in Iran since before his Second (truly scary) election.  I am appalled that the people in the US  could elect such a war mongering, lying idiot twice.  I long for the time he is out of office and am disappointed that we could not manage to choose a better president knowing who he was.

Heather's picture

(post #43938, reply #93 of 216)

I'm with you--this is a really sad, maddening, depressing, appalling administration. And only 3 1/2 years to go.. . .

sanderson's picture

(post #43938, reply #94 of 216)

At least dubya will be on vacation for about 300 days of that if he stays true to form.

Heather's picture

(post #43938, reply #95 of 216)

LOL. More bicycle time--he's gotta stay in shape. The Murrican people want him to stay in shape.

MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #96 of 216)

Let's face it..."bein' president is a hard job" according to Dubya.  That's why he spends so much time on vacation.  And, contrary to most presidents, he is definitely not a workaholic when he's in DC - in bed with the sun, rather than working all night.  Of course, if you don't waste your time reading or trying to uncover the facts and simply rely on your loyal a$$kissers to bring them to you, it helps the days fly by.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

KathiM's picture

(post #43938, reply #177 of 216)

AND if you only read what you want to hear that cuts out 90 % right there.  He's efficient at what he does.  EWWW-

KathiM's picture

(post #43938, reply #176 of 216)

What is really frightening is how much damage he manages to do on vacation.

Mimi's picture

(post #43938, reply #36 of 216)

sanderson:  But is oil worth the cost of American lives?  Yes, there are alternative fuels out there, but as long as Big Oil dominates the economy they will not be implemented.  And, let's face it, GWB is all about Big Oil; he always has been.


mimi

"All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
sanderson's picture

(post #43938, reply #37 of 216)

Another reason to impeach him.

Mimi's picture

(post #43938, reply #46 of 216)

Sanderson:  Oh, I agree completely.  He has refused to testify before congress (there is no legal precedent for this).  He has given a state of the union address every year for the past 5 year before both houses of congress stating his justifications for the war in Iraq; time has proven that almost all of his justifications were based on lies.  I think both of those are impeachable actions.  No one, no matter what office they hold, is above the law.


Bill Clinton lied to congress about a "morally reprehensible crime" (taking advantage of a not-so-innocent intern) but it does not hold a candle to what GWB has lied to congress about.  No one was killed when Clinton lied.  Over 2,000 American men and women have died because GWB lied.  That figure [2,000] only includes the soldiers who have died while on Iraqi soil; it does not include any who died after being airlifted out.


mimi

"All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #47 of 216)

mimi...I do agree with what you're posting, but sweetheart, I'm old and my eyes are not as good as they once were.  Would it be possible for you to not use blue for your posts?  It's really hard to read, at least for us old folks!



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Mimi's picture

(post #43938, reply #48 of 216)

MadMom:  Sorry about that, I will switch to black and white!


mimi

"All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #51 of 216)

Thanks so much...I enjoy your posts, but hate having to squint.  Old age sucks.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Mimi's picture

(post #43938, reply #52 of 216)

Oh, I know what you mean.  I had to dial up the size of the print on the Taunton page, too.


mimi

"All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
Wolvie's picture

(post #43938, reply #28 of 216)

I hear what you are saying. I don't agree that we can just up and leave, however.


I didn't support going into this thing, but how can we just leave those people after what we've done? I know the similarities to Vietnam, believe me.


I have had friends not make it back from this conflict already. Good friends. I miss them more than I can say. I wish we as a nation had the guts to impeach Bush for lying. But it still doesn't make me think we can just walk away.



How clever you are my dear, you never mean a single thing you say


Oscar Wilde 





 

 

Biscuits's picture

(post #43938, reply #30 of 216)

Unfortunately, lying isn't a crime.  W hasn't done anything he can be impeached for yet.


No, I think we just have to wait this presidents term out and see what comes out of the next election.  Maybe W will continue to take his giant vacations and not any more damage. 


Ancora Imparo -

Ancora Imparo -

MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #31 of 216)

Let me get this straight...Clinton could be impeached for lying about boinking Monica, but Bush cannot be impeached for lying and getting over 1800 Americans killed and heaven knows how many Iraqis?  Something is wrong somewhere.  I think what Clinton did was really stupid, but what Bush did was not only immoral but heinous and unforgivable.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Biscuits's picture

(post #43938, reply #39 of 216)

Clinton lied to Congress under OATH.  That's what he was impeached for - lying to Congress.  But you have to be testifying to Congress and under oath for it to be a federal offense.  As far as I know - correct me if I'm wrong - but GWB - he, himself - never once testified in front of Congress, under oath, and said anything.  Some of his aids and advisors did, but HE never did, unless I'm mistaken.  Second - you'll have to prove that he KNOWINGLY lied.  Not an easy task unless you have definitive proof that (a) what he said was a lie; (b) that at the time he made the statement he knew it to be a lie; (c) that he lied with the intent to deceive Congress and the American public; and (d) that he was under OATH at the time he made said false statements.


Speculation and reasonable belief isn't good enough.  Proof.  The Federal rules of evidence are very, very clear.


Ancora Imparo -

Ancora Imparo -

MadMom's picture

(post #43938, reply #42 of 216)

Sorry, but I do believe that knowingly lying to Congress in a State of the Union Address, knowingly having his subordinates lie to the United Nations, and continuing to lie throughout this hideous war, should be grounds for impeachment.  Bush has studiously avoided ever testifying under oath.  In fact, when he has been asked to testify, for example, to the 9/11 commission, he not only refused to be under oath, but he had to bring Cheney with him, and he demanded that their answers not be taken down.  I find this an appalling case of a man who feels he is above reproach.  Perhaps if our laws are not enough to punish him, he should be tried for war crimes?



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

sanderson's picture

(post #43938, reply #44 of 216)

And how are the people we've elected to directly represent us behaving?  How do they respond to the unraveling of Bush's deceptions?  Are they calling him  up and demanding that he testify?  Who owns them?