Wednesday, November 16, 2005

"Mr. Bush is not a liar."

[Howdy, folks. Come on in. Sit a spell. No, you can't have the key to the liquor cabinet. Nice try. -- CC]

Thus speaks Globe and Mail columnist and right-wing attack puppy Marcus Gee, for whom no pro-Bush propaganda is so idiotically inane or dishonest that he won't put it into print.

Sadly, Gee's latest piece is subscriber-only so I, being the magnanimous sort that I am, will type my little fingers to the stubbies reproducing the last few paragraphs which you don't get to see without coughing up actual cash (all emphasis added):

Many Democrats now regret their war vote, but the intelligence they saw was essentially the same as Mr. Bush did.

Which is an outright lie, as many, many folks are now coming to realize. And note how, when you want to lie about something like this, as Gee is, you always qualify your claim with something like "essentially" or "basically" or something like that. See, that means your claim doesn't have to be actually, you know, true, since you can always go back and say, "Well, I never said it was the same, I said it was essentially the same." Dodge, weave, tap dance.

Gee continues in that same paragraph:

The one document they didn't see. the President's daily brief, was if anything more emphatic about the threat. So the argument that Congress was hoodwinked into backing force against Iraq simply doesn't stand up.

This claim is so much weasel feces, it's not clear where to even start. For those who want to do some serious research, I recommend starting over at Josh Marshall's Talking Points Memo and taking it from there. The situation is noticeably more complicated and nuanced than Gee's one paragraph, playground version.

Gee continues in the next paragraph:

None of this absolves Mr. Bush. It is clear now that the main argument for war -- the threat from an Iraq armed with WMDs -- was wrong. Mr. Bush should have conceded that as soon as it became clear that the WMDs were not to be found. Instead, he insisted they would turn up; then, when that position became ridiculous, he became silent on the whole subject.

Read the above highlighted text carefully. See, Bush was wrong. Then, when it became obvious he was wrong, he kept insisting he was right. Then when it became painfully, hideously, gloriously clear that he was wrong, he stopped talking about it. But, technically, that's not "lying," oh no.

(Aside, I would bookmark this column of Gee's for the simple fact that he unambiguously admits that there are no WMDs. It's nice to have a record of stuff like this for when hucksters like Gee turn around a year down the road and start trying to make the claim again, as you just know they will.)

More Gee-speak:

[Bush] should have said: Yes, I was wrong about WMDs, and that has hurt our cause in Iraq. But, with or without WMDs, Saddam Hussein posed a real threat to his neighbours, his people and the world. Someone had to deal with him.

Marcus, you ignorant slut. Perhaps you've forgotten that the primary -- some would say the only -- rationale for the invasion of Iraq is that it posed a clear and imminent threat to the national security of the United States. Without WMDs, that argument collapses entirely and all the desperate, after-the-fact bullshit you and the rest of your wanker colleagues throw against the wall, hoping it will stick, doesn't change that. Not even a little bit.

(By the way, Marcus, the inspectors were dealing with Saddam, until the U.S. kicked them out so they could invade. Or had you forgotten that teensy historical fact?)

Gee finishes with a thoroughly predictable, neo-con-style flourish:

But saying Mr. Bush has failed to admit a mistake is one thing. Questioning his honesty is another.

He didn't just make a mistake. He invented the rationale for that mistake out of thin air. When that mistake became obvious, he covered it up. When it became more obvious, he refused to talk about it. That's all about honesty, Marcus, something I can't imagine you'd appreciate.

His critics have other ways to attack him over the Iraq war. Calling him a liar should not be one of them.

Do they, Marcus, given that, for years, any dissent was immediately branded as terrorist-supporting, unpatriotic, troop-hating treason? Only lately has it finally become socially acceptable to point out the dishonesty of the Bush administration, thanks in no small part to wanks like you who so happily leap to its defense every time it needs a little help. And now you acknowledge that its critics have a right to their opinion?

Fuck you, Marcus -- you and that neo-con train you rode in on. The Bush administration lied their faces off about this from day one, and the best you can do these days is a whole new defense -- well, the Dems knew the same stuff and they voted to let Bush invade so, really, it's the Dems' fault for not stopping him. (For time everlasting, we can refer to this as the Pat Buchanan defense.)

Bush didn't "lie," oh no, he ... accidentally misled based on faulty and contrived intelligence that was produced as a result of Dick Cheney's pressure on the CIA, whose results were "stovepiped" straight to the top, manipulated, then presented selectively to Congress. But, fuck no, he never "lied."

Marcus Gee, on the other hand: he's lying.

: If the Bushistas were seriously miffed about being misled about this whole WMDs thing, you'd think they'd be sharpening their knives for whoever fed them that swill. And at the top of that list would undoubtedly be this guy: Ahmed Chalabi, well-known crook, conman, embezzler and "Queen of Iraq" Judith Miller's main source for all crap WMD-related.

So how is the administration dealing with this? Why, by entertaining Chalabi at the White House these days (short excerpt here). Apparently, actual contrition just isn't on the neo-con menu these days, is it, Marcus?

You know, I think I want a job writing for the Globe. I may not have Gee's silken way with words but, at the very least, I won't sound like a complete moron and dishonest imbecile. I'll even promise to stop using the word "fuck" if that helps.

BONUS SNARK, AT NO EXTRA CHARGE: You have to love Gee's pathetic rationalization here:

The one document they didn't see. the President's daily brief, was if anything more emphatic about the threat.

Really? Would that be the notorious August 6, 2001 PDB? The one entitled "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S."? The one Bush read, the day after which he went on a month-long vacation? The notorious PDB that Condoleezza Rice herself dismissed as "of historical interest only"?

Is that the one you're talking about, Marcus? The one the Bush administration so desperately didn't want anyone to see? That one?

OTHER PEOPLES' SNARK: The Amazing Wonderdog gets in on the action.


Grog said...

Just as any reasonable person must allow that there is a probability that there is an "Intelligent Designer" involved in the universe, we must ascribe a similar probability to Bush telling the world what he believed was the truth.

Then, of course, we must assert that his assistants and advisors knowingly lied through their teeth.

The changing sands of the Why The US Must Invade Iraq story then leave the observer wondering about the intellect that could tell no less than three different stories - all different - and not suspect something was wrong.

That would lead me to suspect that same intellect is challenged by opening the bedroom door in the morning.

Adam said...

Wanker: We had to invade Iraq because Hussein was a sadistic tyrant who tortured and murdered his own people. Are you saying they'd be better off if he were still in charge?

Non-wanker: That's great. When are we going to march on Burma?

Wanker: Where's Burma?

Non-wanker: Please stop trying to pretend you give a rat's ass about human rights.

Ti-Guy said...

I'm less interested in speculating about all the issues regarding the neo-cons' invasion-for-oil without having all the documented facts in front of me, but it's certainly fun to speculate why little Marcus Gee ever thought it was necessary to repeat neo-con talking points in the Globe and Mail. We all have access to US media, we can all read that stuff there. Why has Gee felt so compelled to simply repeat all the half-truths and rationalisations for a Canadian audience for several years now?

Anyone? The least defamatory answer I can come up with is that Gee is indescribably lazy and not very bright.

Grog said...


One possibility is that Gee thought he was doing Harper and his band of wannabe Republicans a favor by providing a "calm rational" look at things.

Of course, that's a little like Ralph Klein campaigning on Harper's behalf...

stellababy said...

there's some band called 'the right brothers' that has a new song entitled 'bush was right'. its so bad I'm speechless... anyway I just thought it was salient given the discussion here.

I'll bet these guys are young earth creationists, too.

thwap said...

Between "Mr. Bush is not a liar" and "Thus said Marcus Gee" [or whatever], you put "Howdy folks..." which makes it sound like Gee was welcoming folks.

Good trashing of the pipsqueak intellectual though.