Sunday, July 15, 2007

Fatuous Nonsense of the Week Award goes to Bill Kristol

I discovered this morning that the Bush presidency is a success.
Boy, was I surprised.

Bill Kristol explains it all in an article at The Washington Post that gets my recommendation for the Fatuous Nonsense of the Week Award.

He opens by admitting that such an assertion may expose him to some "harmless ridicule" and proceeds to offer two pages of proof as to why such ridicule might be justified.

"Let's step back from the unnecessary mistakes and the self-inflicted wounds that have characterized the Bush administration. Let's look at the broad forest rather than the often unlovely trees. What do we see? First, no second terrorist attack on U.S. soil -- not something we could have taken for granted. Second, a strong economy -- also something that wasn't inevitable."

Sure Bill let's examine the Bush presidency by not looking too closely at the "unlovely trees" by which I assume that you refer to the death and destruction that follows everything this administration has touched or even glanced at in the last seven years. Every time I hear that bromide about "no second attack on US soil," I'm reminded of the old elementary school joke about keeping the elephants away, and the punchline, "you don't see any elephants around here, do you?

It may be that there have been no attacks on US soil because we have thoughtfully accommodated the terrorists of the world by presenting them with such an attractive target as our presence in Iraq. They don't need to come here to hurt us, we have been expending blood and treasure in copious amounts for something like 52 months in their home ballpark. We're the ones with the long supply lines, they need only a bus ticket or cab fare from Damascus, Waziristan or Riyadh.

We're losing over a hundred of our troops every month and probably eight to ten  times that many wounded, while bringing about the deaths, maiming or ruin of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, and inviting the continued and well deserved scorn of most of the civilized world, as we merrily mass produce Islamic terrorists by the battalion in Iraq. All told, I think it would be cheaper to fight them here.

But cost is not an issue is it Bill? As one of the principal architects of this criminal madness, I'm sure that you find great comfort in the fact that the lion's share of the trillions of dollars of public funds being expended in pursuit of empire will end up in select private hands, which is the primary goal of those you represent, more money, more power in the hands of the bloated few and the rest of us standing in line for a minimum wage that you hope to eliminate.

"What about terrorism? Apart from Iraq, there has been less of it, here and abroad, than many experts predicted on Sept. 12, 2001. So Bush and Vice President Cheney probably are doing some important things right. The war in Afghanistan has gone reasonably well."

If after nearly six years "reasonably well" means that Kabul is generally safe for the activities of journalists, arms merchants and drug smugglers, I suppose that's true, but what about the other 95% of Afghanistan?

Just across the border in the wilds of Waziristan, Osama and his henchman are thriving, living in relative safety, knowing that American forces have other priorities, are bogged down in Iraq and long ago stopped caring about them. They've been operating there with impunity ever since our military was directed to allow them to escape from the caves of Tora Bora.

You guys (That's you Billy, you and Daddy Irving, along with Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, PNAC, American Enterprise, the whole stinking, chicken hawk cesspot),you guys, didn't want bin Laden then, and you don't want him now, he's your rainmaker, you can't afford to lose him, he's the driving force behind the enormous profits in your ongoing rape of the public treasury. You need Osama, if he went belly up tomorrow you would have to replace him quickly, the continued existence of the bogeyman of "Islamofascism is the centerpiece of your ballgame.

"But wait, wait, wait: What about Iraq? It's Iraq, stupid -- you (and 65 percent of your fellow Americans) say -- that makes Bush an unsuccessful president. Not necessarily. First of all, we would have to compare the situation in Iraq now, with all its difficulties and all the administration's mistakes, with what it would be if we hadn't gone in. Saddam Hussein would be alive and in power and, I dare say, victorious, with the United States (and the United Nations) by now having backed off sanctions and the no-fly zone. He might well have restarted his nuclear program, and his connections with al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups would be intact or revived and even strengthened.

The lies contained in the quotation above have been repeated over and over by every hack, crony and crook in this corrupt administration, by every spineless lickspittle Bush backer in the Congress and by every slimy seditious war profiteer, in every sector of American business, from energy to finance and by a sizable number of the loyalist clergy from the pulpits of the tin hat theocratic right. They were lies in 2001, and they remain lies today. Repetition will not change the facts and those who do the repeating are transparent liars. Please Bill include your name in that column.

"Following through to secure the victory in Iraq and to extend its benefits to neighboring countries will be the task of the next president. And that brings us to Bush's final test."

Pity the poor next President as he tries to present other countries in the region (or in sub Saharan Africa; that's the next stop on the old Empire express isn't it?) with an opportunity to share in the beneficence we bestowed on their Mesopotamian neighbors. See how they run!

If we sustain the surge for a year and continue to train Iraqi troops effectively, we can probably begin to draw down in mid- to late 2008. The fact is that military progress on the ground in Iraq in the past few months has been greater than even surge proponents like me expected, and political progress is beginning to follow. Iran is a problem, and we will have to do more to curb Tehran's meddling -- but we can. So if we keep our nerve here at home, we have a good shot at achieving a real, though messy, victory in Iraq."

When and how, Billy, did you become a strategic thinker, a military analyst, it wasn't in Vietnam where, I'm sure, like so many other young men of your generation, you were offered an opportunity to serve, it wasn't in any area of military service was it, no, like Cheney and Wolfowitz you had other priorities.

Oh yeah, they once called you Dan Quayle's brain, didn't they? I think I'd try to get that off the resume.

Let me remind you that by mid to late 2008 we will have thrown away the lives of an additional thousand or more young American troops and sent another 8000 or so to enjoy the tender mercies of an underfunded veteran's health care system. How many more innocent Iraqis will be killed if we listen to you. Oh, that's right, no one's counting Iraqi casualties are they? Why start now?

You are so smugly certain with your pronouncements. To the uninitiated, your words, accompanied by the self satisfied grin, have a veneer of respectability and authority, but, to many of us who have been on the receiving end of what you call "American foreign policy" they are just more self serving, chicken hawk, patrician prattle.

Here's one of your pronouncements of a few years back, at the beginning of the Iraq war, for which you beat your little drum so loudly, and so frequently, you said this:

"There's been a certain amount of pop sociology in America ... that the Shia can't get along with the Sunni and the Shia in Iraq just want to establish some kind of Islamic fundamentalist regime. There's almost no evidence of that at all. Iraq's always been very secular."

Oh? Really?

I hope that there is a special place in Hell for the Goebbels, the McNamaras, the strategic thinkers and systems analysts, all the accountants of carnage and human misery and I hope that you have the opportunity to join them.

But before that lovely and eternal event I would like to see you in uniform, and fallen, after many grueling months of terror and sadness, of heat and sleeplessness and extreme exertion, of living in filth, fallen, grievously wounded, frightened and alone, lying in a pool of your own blood and gore, your life ebbing before your eyes. I would like to see the look in your eyes as you realize that you are about to be the last American to die in Iraq.

Bob Higgins

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Why Bush Will Be A Winner