Friday, November 10, 2006

My head won't wrap around this

I know this exchange got a lot of play in the media yesterday, but did it really get enough play?



Let's try to look at this objectively for a moment. The President of the United States casually admits that he lied solely to affect the outcome of an election and doesn't seem to think it's any big deal. What shocks me is not that he lied for partisan reasons or that he subsequently admitted it...but the fact that he describes this as if it's a perfectly reasonable justification for lying, and the reporters present seem to accept it as such.

Leave aside anything else you or I may have thought about this President over the past six years, favorable or otherwise; even if he were the greatest President in American history I'd still say the same thing. The President of the United States just said "I boldly lied to the American people about my plans for the defense of our nation because I wanted my party to win the election."

How is this not scandalous all by itself? Are we so accustomed to his insincerity and the naked partisanship which allows not even a pretense of being the President of the entire nation -- not merely the percentage that voted for him or his party -- that we just take this in stride as "more of the same"?

4 comments:

  1. no one believes in truth anymore, deep down.

    truthfulness is no longer an admirable quality; perhaps it is regarded as slavish adherence to a dogma or paradigm.

    what is highly regarded is not truthfulness, but machievelian savvy, the ability to "spin."

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  2. But the thing is, it's not the lie that disturbs me, it's the honesty. A lie from a politician is nothing remarkable -- particularly this one -- but he didn't even try to spin this lie in any way. He felt no need to pay lip service to the notion of being honest with the public. He didn't try to claim some higher purpose for the lie, such as "not wanting to embolden the enemies of freedom by leading them to think our will to fight was weakened" or some bullshit like that. Instead, he blandly says "I lied so that my party would win the election" as if that's a good enough reason and he was certain no one could possibly object. The level of cynicism this demonstrates is astonishing. Is it just simply the fact that his lie had the opposite effect of the intended goal that makes this seem so unremarkable to most people?

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  3. beta ray steve11/12/2006 1:55 PM

    I find this issue trivial.Have any presidents, when asked about dumping one cabinet member or another, said "As soon as we find a replacement, Rummy is toast"?
    The pathetic part is if he had thrown Rummy from the train, say, six months ago, he might have avoided this asskicking.
    Rab, after all we've seen coming from the President and his minions, do you actually expect anything even distantly related to the truth to come from them?

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  4. I think most of us just reacted with a resigned sigh to this. Just two more years, two more years.

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