Saturday, February 26, 2005

Eric Alterman of The Nation has written a book about the four biggest presidential lies about matters of war and peace: Roosevelt misrepresenting the Yalta agreement to disguise the fact that it ceded Eastern Europe to the Soviets, Kennedy hiding the fact that he got the Russians to remove missiles from Cuba by agreeing to take our missiles out of Turkey, Johnson inventing the Gulf of Tonkien incident, and Reagan lying about the Iran-Contra connection. Bush's lies are just a coda in this book, but the review in American Prospect points out that Bush's lies are unique:
Two things distinguish Bush from his predecessors on the subject of lying. First, Bush’s grandest lies have not been about covering up what has already happened but about persuading the public to go along with what he has decided to do but has yet to implement. Tax cuts, Iraq, now Social Security -- each major policy move has been accompanied by a campaign of deception. Lying is not a defensive reaction to a crisis but a carefully crafted strategy. Second, and perhaps most troubling, is that Bush seems unconcerned about getting caught. Indeed, the administration’s damn-the-torpedoes fearlessness is the source of much of its political success. ... Go ahead, these officials seem to be saying, call us a bunch of liars -- we really don’t care.
One of the common threads running through [Alterman's book] is that in case after case, the press went along with whatever the administration told it. Watergate may have temporarily cured reporters of this credulousness, but the remission lasted only so long. When the history of the Bush administration is written, the abject cowardice of the press in confronting an administration that held it in undisguised contempt and lied in its face will be one of the most depressing chapters.

Also depressing is that, when revealed, other presidential lies have had consequences. Not so, it seems, with Bush:
As of yet, not only has neither Bush nor his party paid a price for the lies about Iraq but there is little reason to think they will anytime soon. In no small part, the administration is able to evade consequence for its mendacity because its supporters have adopted a siege mentality, hunkered behind the castle walls of their loyalty to the president. Presented with irrefutable evidence that the war in Iraq was sold on a series of deceptions, many of them simply stick their fingers in their ears and chant, “La la la, I can’t hear you.” . . .
One trembles to contemplate the lesson of the Bush administration’s deceptions: Admit nothing, even when caught; continue to lie, even after the lie has been exposed; define anyone who questions the lie as an enemy of the nation or, failing that, of “the troops.” If your partisans stand firm, ... you can get away with just about anything.

I think one of the reasons Bush hasn't paid for his lies is that Democrats haven't attacked. Sure Dick Durbin, Henry Waxman, and Barbara Boxer have. Howard Dean wasn't shy. But where were the rest of them? Where are they now?
Click here if you're interested in reading the article.

6 Comments:

At 1:25 PM, Blogger GS said...

Hey here is a site that actually gives away FREE tickets to Las Vegas shows. They have other useful information regarding Las Vegas getaways and american storm Check it out american storm

 
At 3:54 PM, Blogger rushprnews said...

Hi, great blog! Let's talk Marketing and PR. Please feel free to visit my blog too at
, RushPRnews Daily Gazette, Open-Call for Writers.
My website is** RushPRnews press release services, distribution and free web posting** . Cordially, Anne Laszlo-Howard

 
At 7:55 PM, Blogger Devon said...

Hey! Found your blog when looking for stuff on Happy Valentine's Day. Not quite what I was looking for, but a good read anyhow, so I thought I'd post a comment. Me and My Happy Valentine's Day Site.

 
At 10:52 PM, Blogger Devon said...

I stumbled across your blog while doing research on Unique Valentine's Day Gifts for my site Unique Valentine's Day Gifts. Thought I'd say thanks!

 
At 11:08 AM, Blogger diluted-thoughts said...

I look for blogs as great as your work. Fine
blog. I found your site suitable for another visit!
Stop by and look at my cash advance service blog site.

 
At 1:53 AM, Blogger cash advance dallas said...

Excellent blog.  I go though the web in search of
blogs like this one. Its so good, that I plan on
returning to its site!
Please go over my same day cash advance blog.

 

Post a Comment

<< Home