Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 29, 2008

Culture of Deception

For all of its self serving, [Scott McClellan's] book does serve one good purpose: It is a reminder that we still do not know precisely how far Mr. Bush, Mr. Cheney and the others were willing to wade into that “culture of deception” to sell Americans on the disastrous Iraq war.
I Knew It All Along, NYT Editorial, May 29, 2008

We do not know? We still do not know how far others were willing to wade into that “culture of deception”?

Hmm, really? Let's see:

The answer is the destruction of Iraq's unconventional weapons and the dismantling of its program to develop nuclear arms. That should be the lodestar of American and United Nations policy.
A Road Map for Iraq, NYT Editorial, Sep 18, 2002


The cost of letting that happen has been diminished authority for the United Nations and a growing danger that Iraq's unconventional weapons will be used in war or passed on to terrorists.
A Unified Message to Iraq, NYT Editorial, Nov 9, 2002


Iraq has to get rid of its biological and chemical arms and missiles and the means to make them, and abandon its efforts to develop nuclear weapons.
Decisive Days for Iraq, NYT Editorial, Dec 6, 2002


There is ample evidence that Iraq has produced highly toxic VX nerve gas and anthrax and has the capacity to produce a lot more. It has concealed these materials, lied about them, and more recently failed to account for them to the current inspectors.
Disarming Iraq, NYT Editorial, Feb 15, 2003


[Mr. Hussein] would also have to turn over all mobile biological and chemical weapons facilities, surrender anthrax stockpiles or demonstrate that they had been destroyed, finish eliminating illegal missiles and account for all unmanned aerial drones.
Diplomacy's Last Chance, NYT Editorial, Mar 23, 2003

Posted by b on May 29, 2008 at 6:05 UTC | Permalink


We still live under the ilusion that news is the "product" that the media generate and that we viewers/readers are the "customers".

Comercial media exist to generate revenues through advertising, providing information is just the window dressing they put out to attract readers so they can charge more to their real customers for advertising space or air time.

And Bush had the commercial media convinced that they would massively lose reader/viewership if they dared stray from the official line. No amount of backpedalling will cover that up.

I am glad that a new blog-based information culture has sprung up in the meantime: I read papers like the NYT the same way I used to look at the soviet "Pravda" - not for the information content, but to find out what the official Party line was on any given issue.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 29 2008 6:12 utc | 1

If you want to have a little fun, go to Foreign Affairs Jan/Feb 2000 and slog through the long self righteous article by a certain Condi Rice. About two thirds through the neocon epistle, you'll find that well before the 2000 election and years before 9/11, she indicates that if Bush was elected his highest priority in foreign policy would be "regime change in Iraq." Yep. Sell the war. Market it. Stroke it. Love it.

Posted by: Diogenes | May 29 2008 11:03 utc | 2

New York Times editorial board: pwn'd!

Posted by: Cloud | May 29 2008 13:57 utc | 3

single page link for diogenes' #2 - Campaign 2000: Promoting the National Interest

Posted by: b real | May 29 2008 15:03 utc | 4

Scott and so many others...this is a staple of US politics... anything goes, nobody objects, and when it doesn’t quite turn out hunky-dory or peachy-peachy, you get some mea-culpa, some guff about misjudgment, a few trivial details about behind the scenes discussions (haven’t read the book), a revision of mind with hindsight! Meanwhile, at the time things are actually going on and influencing events, all the good soldiers are on board. Such reviews of the past serve no purpose for the future.

OK, this is part of the American ethic, you can fail, make mistakes, start anew, and at each failure you gain understanding... on an individual level, a violent marriage, being bankrupt, an abysmal credit rating, crime and jail time, are, fairly, an “aw shucks” events that can be recovered from (provided one belongs to the proper strata, or has skills, luck, etc.) But for statecraft? Only when one holds all the cards, has supreme power.

Yes the mainstream media are beholden to interests, yes they shape public opinion, yes there may exist manipulations the like of which we cannot know, yes they fabricate and distort, yes no (or little, see the internet and other) room is left for alternative discourse, opinion, initiative. But the MSM also just sell a product, provide what people want or are interested in, or hook them in with gossip that they love, sagas ongoing, etc. and are (particularly in the US) dependent on Gvmt. stats, spokesmen, statesmen, financiers, opinion makers, so called.

The MSM are operating in the ‘free market’...and run a pernicious version of village gossip, the nitty-gritty right in your living room, as there is no more village square, and part of social life and all of political life is run through the TV. See the Obama-Hill contest, so desperately vicious...However, that they are completely beholden to Gvmt. or other powerful bodies (corps, lobbies, other) is quite clear. Just as people are in real life...An ugly mirror.

The mirror feeds back in..

Posted by: Tangerine | May 29 2008 16:25 utc | 5

@ralphieboy @1 - you are correct

CNN's Yellin: Network execs killed critical White House stories

But Yellin went much further, revealing that news executives — presumably at ABC News, where she'd worked from July 2003 to August 2007 — actively pushed her not do hard-hitting pieces on the Bush administration. [See update]

"The press corps was under enormous pressure from corporate executives, frankly, to make sure that this was a war presented in a way that was consistent with the patriotic fever in the nation and the president's high approval ratings," Yellin said.

Also Glennzilla: CNN/ABC reporter: Corporate executives forced pro-Bush, pro-war narrative

Posted by: b | May 29 2008 17:58 utc | 6

He">">He was pro-palestian before he ran for Pres.

Posted by: Ralph Nader | May 29 2008 18:26 utc | 7


"Fair and Balanced" is a marketing slogan, not a policy.

the Iraq War was the point that I stopped taking mainstream news with a grain of salt and started ignoring it entirely. Fortunately, guys like Billmon, Truthout and Warblogging and others were there to provide fair and balanced information that one could take - nonetheless critically - to build a view of what was really going on.

Posted by: ralphieboy | May 29 2008 18:26 utc | 8

@ralphieboy - I stopped taking mainstream news with a grain of salt and started ignoring it entirely

But most bloggers work off the media and agency stuff as they usually do not have the resources to do original reporting.

The 'trick' is to use more sources, compare them and distill the difference into a narrative.

That is the value bloggers are adding to the news. But there would be much less insightful blogging without the MSM news.

Posted by: b | May 29 2008 18:55 utc | 9

I realise that this doesn't play well amongst those raised in the belief that absolute freedom of speech is an absolute right but I still maintain that while society should protect freedom of speech vigorously, that should not include the freedom to tell lies.
The only speech worth protecting is the truth.
And yes I realise that much of the stuff purveyed as facts is indeed opinion and opinion is a much more difficult substance to analyse and mine facts from.

Still when one does get right into opinions; for example Dick Cheney's oft stated opinion that the legitimate Saddam Hussein Iraqi regime aided Osama and the 911 actions, one does find that he is claiming things as facts which he knows to be untrue. He has seen innumerable intelligence reports refuting the Saddam 911 or Osama connection yet even now in the right crowd he still taps his nose as though he's about to impart 'inside information' and tells huge pork pies.
A truly free society would arrest Cheney and charge him with stealing the truth. Free people must be free from unreality, sold in propaganda which the perp knows is lies.
On a smaller scale I glanced at NYT the other day and there was a story debating whether the election of judges which seems on the surface not such a bad idea, was in fact distorting amerika's justice system.

An example from a Wisconsin election of what can go wrong:

The vote came after a bitter $5 million campaign in which a small-town trial judge with thin credentials ran a television advertisement falsely suggesting that the only black justice on the state Supreme Court had helped free a black rapist. The challenger unseated the justice with 51 percent of the vote, and will join the court in August.

Needless to say I find that story appalling on so many levels. It also explains why amerikans won't get their nation back until enough of them recognise that they must fight for it.

As I can see the nub of the entire problem with that election, the lies about Iraq pre illegal invasion, and just about every other injustice and crime inflicted on peeps by the empire, is that amerika which lacks strong defamation or libel laws, much less a sanction against lying, protects and nurtures those who mislead the rest of their community.
Advertising campaigns of $5 mill for a judge (now who is gonna put up that kinda dough for a small election and not want a quid pro quo?) wouldn't matter if the campaigns were only allowed to speak the truth, tell the whole story when they pestered peeps with their incessant burbling.
Without the sly distortion into lies that this creep put out about his opponent he could have shellacked the Wisconsonites with commercials imploring them to vote for him and he would have pissed off more than he persuaded.

Posted by: Debs is dead | May 29 2008 21:49 utc | 10

Somewhat to my surprise, I find myself inclined to think well of McClellan and his book, of his book as a gesture.

I think there's a story about this book involving McClellan's family--a family of distinction and achievement. I have no notion of its political orientation--complicated, I suppose--but the little information I've gleaned from Google tells me this: his mother's father was a distinguished lawyer, a law professor, and a law school dean who defended professors against the attacks of hostile alumni. His father's career--a rather wild affair--includes a spell of being spellbound by JFK, and of getting caught up in a conspiracy theory about the assassination being done by major players in the oil patch. His mother is an active player in Texas Republican politics (she seems to have nurtured his career). Most interesting of all is his elder brother, a model over-achiever (MD/Phd from Harvard and MIT, occasional player of standing in healthcare politics, author and researcher).

Bearing in mind that the mother and the elder brother have strong Texas Republican party ties, its unthinkable that they didn't have something to do with McClellan's book. Since they've gone completely unnoticed and undiscussed by the popular press, I can only guess as to what that "something to do" might be.

One thing at least I'm sure of: they've promised to stand at his side in the face of the character assassinations coming his way (and therefore coming their way).

Did they push him to write this book? Did they help him write it? If so, have they done so with the knowledge and support of friends and colleagues around the country?

I don't expect any early answers to these questions--or any answers at all, come to think of it. But I cannot believe that he did this all by himself, and I cannot believe that his family wouldn't have pulled together to help him out of a tough spot--be it of fear, confusion, fury, depression, grief, or a familiar mix of all these, something they surely share in some degree.

In this context, it makes sense that he'd be particularly outspoken about his experience of the Plame affair. He might very well have some fellow-feeling for Joe Wilson's experience of being used and humiliated by this gang. Wilson and Plame, for all I know, may even have had occasion to encourage his stepping forward.

If this hypothesis has any bearing on the affair, this would be due to the fact that underlying principle is a simple one: Bush and his cohorts seduced him, used him, abandoned him and humiliated him (a more than willing target, but not a witting one). And if, at some point, a person doesn't fight back against this sort of treatment, then his entire life is done for.

It alsogoes without saying that I find Michael Kinsley's screed in today's WaPo unworthy of comment, citation or linkage.

Posted by: alabama | May 29 2008 22:06 utc | 11

Somewhat to my surprise, I find myself inclined to think well of McClellan and his book, of his book as a gesture.

Interesting you should think that, as me and my friend, lizard, -- whom posts here sometimes -- while throwing Frisbee in the park today, was discussing this, we both came to the conclusion that it is mere, 'controlled disclosure', further, I believe these type disclosure things hurt this cabal not one bit, they revel in their delusions of grander. They truly believe themselves to be great revolutionaries, and think that people are in awe of their prowling skills.

I wouldn't be surprised if they wanted McClellan to put these things out there as a way of flaunting their power, by saying, 'see, we can do these over the top things and there is no one to stop us' . It thus reinforces their power,and at the same time makes others feel powerless.

Posted by: Uncle $cam | May 29 2008 23:38 utc | 12

Uncle $cam: maybe, and indeed, why not? I don't see our hypotheses as mutually exclusive. Combining them, in fact, would make for a richer take on the thing, and I have a hunch that it's very rich. I expect it to produce some surprises--some complications, if you will. Or maybe not. We'll see....

Posted by: alabama | May 30 2008 0:10 utc | 13

Dennis Perin has some 'book excerpts':

the excerpts I've seen so far tantalize:

*Scooter Libby's late night frolics with hirsute teen girls, watching them smear hummus on each other's fuzzy faces while Libby masturbated into specimen cups, "to ensure future generations of greatness," as Libby often put it.

*Karl Rove's ghastly halitosis which, in McClellan's words, "inspired President Bush to reminisce about the Mexican prostitutes he frequented in his youth, speaking in a strained Spanish accent while dancing around Rove, snapping his fingers."
*Dick Cheney's penchant for handing subordinates pornographic playing cards, then smirking, "That's me in the mask."

*Barbara Bush disrupting a cabinet meeting by letting loose her pet Gila Monsters, Candy and Spank, on the conference table, warning Colin Powell and Condi Rice that the lizards loved "dark meat" before serenading her "babies" with a strange lullaby about sun-baked rocks.

*President Bush's obsession with sodomizing Saddam Hussein. According to McClellan, "For weeks before the invasion, the president went into intimate detail about how he would, in his words, 'Fuck that sand merchant's shit pipe,' complete with humping gestures, graphic sex talk, and always ending with a very theatrical fake orgasm, his face twisted with pleasure, his tongue darting back and forth. Afterward, the president would mime zipping up his pants, then say to whoever was in the room, 'That's the plan, anyway.'"

Posted by: b | May 30 2008 5:07 utc | 14

Uncle: yes, as committed cynics we're left to wonder: how mediated is the message? maybe it's just greed, and all this hype we're helping spread is to sell books. or maybe Scottie is actually pissed off enough at being played like a suckered dupe, and this is his revenge.

but the idea of controlled disclosure is to get ahead of the information you can't stop from leaking out, like those connivers at RAND releasing the shocking numbers regarding amerikan soldiers with head injuries and PTSD. I think Debs addressed in another routinely quality post the coming deluge of untreated PTSD cases walking around like time bombs because military and civilian leadership lack the basic humanity to adequately take care of their own. RAND is just creating the framework to herd the national response for the next wave of misery purposely set in motion to hit.

alabama: good points all around. combine, combine, combine. no one has exclusive access to the truth. we all have bits and pieces, here and there, and sometimes they assemble very interesting mosaics of thought.

another thing Uncle and i discussed while tossing the disc around today is how maddeningly tedious our totally fucked process of national coronation has become. being in the state voting last in this sad joke we call a democratic primary is causing serious agitation among those of us no longer fooled by the deceitful myth of amerikan exceptionalism.

so forgive us if we get a little snappy when we defend those who give us hope (like Naomi Klein) that amerikans are capable of learning and explaining how our national interests have come at the cost of spreading and supporting terrorism around the globe to keep corporate oligarchs fat and happy.

Posted by: Lizard | May 30 2008 5:37 utc | 15

@14: is that suppose to be funny?

Posted by: Lizard | May 30 2008 5:43 utc | 16

...because if fucking a sand merchant's shit pipe is something you want to echo like a provocative comedian, then so be it. just don't expect those of us from the states to share in the belly laugh.

Posted by: Lizard | May 30 2008 7:11 utc | 17

Remember, the blame game?
fucking weasel... I had forgotten how much I wanted to punch this pussy fuck. But after watching the above it all came rolling back.

Posted by: Uncle $cam | May 30 2008 8:12 utc | 18


Posted by: Uncle $cam | May 30 2008 8:34 utc | 19

Robert Wexler On McClullen, Rove, Subpoenas, Conyers, & A Mention of Siegelman

Congressman Robert Wexler on Randi’s show Thursday 5/29/08

Randi: I was reading what you wrote yesterday, immediately upon scanning McClellan’s book, that you want to compel him to come and testify in front of the judiciary committee. And we know that you subpoenaed Karl Rove to come. When is Karl Rove due to appear?

Wexler: We don’t have a date yet. We did, in fact, John Conyers--the chairman of the committee, and the committee subpoenaed Karl Rove. There are discussions, as I understand it, but--to date--we have no commitment from Karl Rove which is consistent with the kind of stonewalling that the Bush administration has done with so many other witnesses. And from my perspective we should find these people in contempt and then negotiate again if necessary. But the house of representatives should be prepared to use our inherent contempt power which would allow the house of representatives to send out the sergeant of arms to physically make certain that people appear before the house judiciary committee to testify.

This is the first administration in the history of the United States of America that has refused to appear to testify before congress on not one, but now several occasions. And to compound that problem, the new attorney general, Mr. Mukasey has said he will order the district attorneys--in the various districts--NOT to enforce a congressional contempt citation. So, effectively, the administration has tied congresses hands. That’s why I think we should be prepared to use our inherent power of contempt.

Randi: the way that I understand it is that in 1934 you kinda made a deal with the justice department where you held somebody in inherent contempt, and after that whole trial they said it was so long and congress was all tied up with this so we’ll let the justice department enforce our subpoenas from now on and gave that inherent contempt power to the justice department. Of course, now, you’ve got an attorney general Mukasey (way to go Chuck Schumer and Diane Feinstein--help him out of the torture problem he had) you’ve got Mukasey saying he will NOT enforce congressional subpoenas to appear. So now don’t you have to take a vote in the house to get the power of inherent contempt back into the house?

Wexler: that’s not my understanding. The inherent power of contempt is a power that congress has and everyone involved, including myself, would much prefer to engage in discussion and negotiation with the administration to compel people’s testimony. But that assumes that the administration would be acting in good faith towards the goal of providing testimony. That hasn’t been the case. We have no choice.

Randi: if the legislative branch is going to be a co-equal branch of government it is now time for it to claim its equal partnership in the governance of this country.

We’ve heard all about Bush and his unitary executive theories, we’ve lived through it, we’ve watched it. Harriet Miers thumbed her nose at the judiciary committee, Josh Bolten same story: won’t come. Karl Rove has just been subpoenaed by the house. I don’t know what you’re going to do to compel McClellan to come and I don’t know which McClellan will show up because the one that’s talking now is not known to the white house, so I’m guessing he’s a zombie…he’s been pod-snatched, he’s a Scott/bot apparently. It’s not the real guy. (haha)

Wexler: well, the interesting thing about Scott McClellan--I don’t want to presuppose anything (he may voluntarily come if we subpoenaed him--he may come without issue) but the one thing I think would be fairly certain is there would be no legitimate claim of executive privilege as to these matters because he’s put it all in a book!

Randi: exactly. I’m thinking the same thing, I’m reading the excerpts. I ordered it but I don’t have it yet because I’m not on the preferred list…but from the pieces that have been read out loud that I could read or hear, it is stunning what this man has to say.

However, I’m very concerned with the inherent contempt powers. I want you to be real sure that you have those powers and that you don’t need to go through some process like a vote--you’ve got the votes to get it.

Wexler: yeah, we would have to vote to use our power but I thought you meant that we would somehow have to take back our power.

Randi: you know, I think so. I’m not really sure but a good call I made yesterday and spoke to Jonathan Turley--and I may not be clear and I may not have heard him correctly, twice, say this, but he does indicate that you have to go through a vote to even get inherent contempt back because there’s been a transfer of that power to the justice department. But the bets are off now because Mukasey has said that he will not enforce congressional subpoenas so that arrangement that you guys had--going back to ‘34--has to be undone. And you’ve got to claim back the power.

I don’t want to talk process, but what is it that you’re interesting in hearing from Scott McClellan.

Wexler: well, some of the issues that were presented by Scott McClellan himself were whether or not Karl Rove and Scooter Libby conspired together to obstruct justice by not telling the truth regarding their role in the Valerie Plame Wilson matter. People may remember there were investigations as to who outed the covert CIA. agent, Ms. Plame…

Randi: (sarcastic) oh, you mean that glorified secretary?

Wexler: Um, no.

Randi: the nerve of people in the media was endless on this.

Wexler: yes. This is a serious issue, and Scott McClellan seemed to suggest that there may have been some conspiracy between Karl Rove and Scooter Libby on this issue. And this is a felony beyond a lying issue. This is about exposing a covert CIA agent. If this, in fact, was happening in the white house--if two people were conspiring in this regard (and I don’t want to prejudge the facts--that‘s why Scott McMullen needs to come and tell the truth; I don‘t have independent information in that regard).

Also, in respect to in what manner intelligence was purposefully provided in a misleading way regarding the Iraq war. These are issues that need to be put on the record and apparently Scott McMullen has information that is quite relevant. All of these things the American people deserve to hear.

I’ve heard some people say today “this will be the job for historians.” NO! This is the job for the house of representatives. We are empowered by the American constitution to do it.

Randi: what is your leadership saying? Is she saying anything?

Wexler: I think chairman Conyers believes that this is a very important and appropriate role that the house judiciary committee can play. And when congress comes back in session next week I think he is going to lead an aggressive effort in this regard.

Randi: well, Turley said (and I found this interesting because Jonathan Turley is a constitutional law professor, …) John Conyers is not the guy you want to mess with. He thinks that this has reached critical mass and everybody is done with it, that the patriotic fever has subsided now and we’re ready to hear the truth as a country. And not only are ready, but demanding it and it falls upon you.

Last night I heard Debbie Wassermann-Schultz on Dan Abrams and Dan Abrams asked her the question because she’s a judiciary member too. And he asked her what are you prepared to do and she said that she was prepared to have Karl Rove arrested if necessary. And that shocked me because she’s been on the other side of things from where I am lately. But I was kind of encouraged by that.

Wexler: I think congresswoman Wassermann-Schultz is dead on correct in this regard. I think her sentiment, which I agree with and I have talked to chairman Conyers about it, is a sentiment that is growing in terms of people not being patient any longer with the stonewalling that the Bush administration has continually provided to the house judiciary committee. And people are saying “you know what? We have negotiated, we on the house side have acted in good faith, we’re asking for legitimate information that the American people deserve to know and we’re not going to wait until after you leave office, Mr. President, to do the investigation. The time is now.” and this is being done all pursuant to the appropriate role of congress.

Randi: I heard Scott McClellan say something so shocking on the today show--it’s hard for me to even breathe anymore. Because for awhile you’re thinking: maybe I’m getting it wrong, maybe I am wrong, maybe there was a reason, (riffing) etc. but McMullen said that the intelligence that ran counter to the selling of this war was ignored and the threat was hyped and that Andrew Card was telling the truth when he said you don’t bring out new products in august and it was a product to be sold. And the thing that kills me is that Colin Powell has never been talked to. He’s never gonna write a book.

I’m not saying McMullen is a hero--believe me, he’s not. If he were he would have been saying things while he was in a position to influence events, not after the fact. And he says the reason he wrote this book is exactly the Plame matter. Because he went and asked the people he was loyal to, the people who were telling him to lie--it was fine for him to lie about Katrina and it was fine for him to lie about the Iraq war, it was fine for him to lie about Valerie Plame. But when he went to Rove and Scooter and Cheney, Elliot Abrams--he said he asked these men personally: did you do this? And they said no. that’s when he got upset. ‘cause they lied to him. It was okay for him to lie to us but it wasn’t okay for them to lie to him.

Now this is what he’s saying: he’s saying the intelligence was cherry picked. What’s amazing to me was 23 senators and 133 house members and me -- all knew. We knew.

Wexler: yes.

Randi: What’s also fascinating is that Brian Williams, this morning, said he was in Kuwait in the build up to war and he was getting personal phone calls on his cell phone from the pentagon every time he would report something they didn’t like.

Katie Couric is now alleging there was corporate pressure, Jessica Yellin was fired from ABC because they were pressuring her to report stories that would play into the patriotic fever and the president’s high approval ratings.

The whole country has been absolutely propagandized. Is that a crime? Is that a crime?

Wexler: I know that congress bears a great deal of the responsibility in terms of failing to provide the oversight we should have provided. And I’m a part of that failure and it’s something that I regret deeply. But I also believe that maybe the most important thing Scott McClellan has presented is the very notion that you’re talking about--that the media and it’s proper role also failed the American people.

And I hope it’s a wake-up call for members of the media who, according to Scott McClellan, didn’t ask the right questions. You, of course, Randi, are the exception. But the media in Washington who didn’t ask the tough questions, did, in fact just buy all the propaganda that the Bush administration put forth.

And again, I’m not saying this to minimize congresses responsibility because ours is separate and apart from that of the media. And we failed. But the media also failed.

Randi: the media failed miserably. And they fired people. They fired Phil Donohue. They fired Jessica Yellin, they fired Ashley Banfield. They fired Dan Rather. These people lost their jobs.

I don’t understand how congress sits by and allows corporations to own more and more of the media and expect a different result. (riffing)

..McClellan…have you reached out to him yet?

Wexler: I have not, because I think we need to do this through the judiciary committee. I also think we need to talk to Karl Rove, not only about these matters but also about what happened to governor Don Siegelman in Alabama. There’s a whole host of allegations in that regard that are quite troubling.

I'm not a big rhodes fan, but since she was fired from AAR she's been a bit more biting and less gate keeper-ish.

Also see, News Anchors: Did We Ask The Right Questions On Iraq?

Did We Ask The Right Questions On Iraq?, Did We Ask The Right Questions On Iraq?...

hahahaha ...

Posted by: Uncle $cam | May 30 2008 11:42 utc | 20

I've watched that youtube vid in my #20, now, several times and the more I watch winking(Bryan), blinking(Katie) and nod(charlie), minimize their roles in particular, and the media in general the more I want to chew roofing tacks and stomp on baby bunny rabbits. These after the fact, run away from blame discounting minimizing media war whores make me so angry, I have to go swim laps now!

Posted by: Uncle $cam | May 30 2008 12:05 utc | 21

Bar Keep: I'm drinking B-52's today.


Reminds me of when I was teaching at the College of Charleston. I got so tired of the old money southern politics that permeated the school that I went to a school event under the name of "Professor Beauregard Dogfucker (pronounced Dog-foo-kay) of the Charleston Dogfuckers". It became my old southern money displaced Huguenot name. When they asked if my name ended with -ay, I'd reply, "No, its French!" It always took them a few minutes to figure it out. That's part of the fun of being a Yankee in the low country.

But seriously, Mr Mac's new book does show the side of a wounded, disillusioned human that got bitch slapped by the truth about a hundred more times than most Neocons can tolerate without imploding. Their usual response reminds me of a few scenes from Mel Brooks "To Be or Not to Be." Remember the poor Nazi sergeant who after getting hit with contradiction after contradiction by his commanding officer could only stammer out, "Heil...Heil..HITLER!!"? Damn! These humans keep getting in the way of the machine!

But Mr. Mac goes beyond that. To repudiate your near associates for the sake of the truth does make you a Judas. He'll pay for that, but the price is worth is worth saving his remaining scrap of soul.

I'm trying to get a review copy because I am such a cheapskate, but I may actually buy a copy if that fails.

Posted by: Diogenes | May 30 2008 12:12 utc | 22

Thanks Uncle 3 links above, though have emotionally been able to watch only the baitcasters all way through. McClellan's 2 may take some serious whisky.

Endgame antics, teasing of the caged, notes from the Ripper.

Posted by: plushtown | May 30 2008 13:02 utc | 23

oh, and #12 is right, Uncle and Lizard, and Alabama maybe.

The only ways to attack the tippy-top are a James Bond villain and/or wide believed disclosure of the sex stuff, especially the child stuff.

I try to argue using standard geology ignored by Gore et. al. (one would think to their financial peril) and the non-fight over air conditioner efficiency regulations.

But only the sexy stuff and the gore stuff (snuff film commissioning and child sacrifice) would show the tippy-top heels.

If people would believe it. But all gets mixed with paid charges of anti-semitism/anti-income/anti-freedom, when the tippy-top aren't any religion- have what looks more like a ritual-rich business deal in Luciferianism and are more anti-semitic as judged by words/actions/results than anyone, take huge income from all and historically are only after their own freedom to enter and control markets.

Same rules as in a chamber of commerce meeting: things have to be paid for, so those with the purse and blackmail strings make the decisions that are enacted

liked b's comic quotes, especially lizard parts. Jenna did refer to Laura as Mommyzilla on Jay Leno recently, according to a poster on Jon Ronson's forum, viewed/heard while poster was telling her brother how nuts Icke was re lizards.

Posted by: plushtown | May 30 2008 13:33 utc | 24

When I first read b’ post #14 where he is quoting Dennis Perin, who is then quoting McClellan book, in which McClellan is then quoting disgusting statements from Bush and his staffers, I thought these “excerpts” actually came from McClennan’s book. I do not have access to and haven’t read McClennan’s book so I used b’s link to Perin’s site to see if I could learn what was going on. It seems that this is a sick joke, although I am still not 100% positive. This is similar to jokes I hear when listening to Rush Limbaugh where those on the “left” (wherever or whatever that is) are mocked in a humorous way but there is just a slight smidgeon of truth to allow the listener (via the art of connotation) to have an entirely untrue identity of the person being ridiculed. Although Perin’s “excerpts” are to the extreme in crudeness if untrue, it is the same technique. And with the Bush administration, probably nothing one could imagine or make-up is worse than the truth. It is not funny to be dishonest about this, although slightly ironic to find this on a MOA thread on a post about deception. Then again, if these quotes are accurate, I apologize in advance. Another poster a few days ago said he was not the brightest bulb among us, and r’giap quickly corrected him before I had the chance. Without a doubt he and most posters on MOA are very bright. I am slow sometimes in catching on. And admittedly, I often and purposely ruffle feathers here, but it is always in some attempt to illustrate a point and not just to cause trouble. So please pardon what I write here in the spirit of understanding or any other positive spirit you will allow.

With that said, I put forth further thoughts on Deb’s post #10 above about honesty and the law. I appreciate all of Deb’s posts in that he usually takes the reader to a second level in detail (although I sometimes disagree or feel even more detail/information is required for a true picture). In short, I disagree with Deb that lying should be against the law. Surprisingly, this statement has come from myself, a moral fundamentalist. And sometimes I think it is dishonesty, not money, (especially dishonesty to oneself) that is “the root of all evil”. When I was younger, I thought lying was against the law, and when I found out it wasn’t, I thought it should be against the law. But true freedom of speech and openness in media and governments should become the real deterrent to dishonesty. Most of us would reasonably assume that bringing a nation to war without cause and under false pretense is a high crime and I believe that also. Politicians have an oath of office that they are obligated to uphold. Unfortunately, even the simplest wording and obligations of the U.S. Constitution are ignored by U.S. officials.

But also significant enough to mention again, at least in my opinion, is a sublime prejudice in Deb’s post, where generally ‘East and South are good, West and North are bad.’ In such a frame of mind, only in a far western region of this planet, specifically in “Amerika”, do “peeps” commonly lie, cheat and steal (or at least commonly go unpunished for it).

We often read here on MOA concerns regarding strategic tactics of divisiveness used in the Middle East and in various special ops by the U.S. government. Most of us realize that various leaders – both local and global - often identify political wars as religious wars using deceptive means to further political goals. For some reason, this tactic of division reminds me of the many criticisms of Americans here in our little MOA whiskey bar. I worry that a theme of contempt for Americans is bad for many reasons. It serves no positive purpose that I can understand, it is deceptive in nature, and in some ways it encourages divisiveness although on a different realm. Of course, there is no doubt that the U.S. and its people deserve criticism. I have criticized my country even to the point that I now say that the founding concepts of America no longer exist. I have criticized the materialistic culture that has evolved in these United States, a culture that appears to be spreading throughout the modern world. I remember not too long ago when a line of tobacco executives each testified to the U.S. Congress, in succession, stating that smoking (nicotine) was not addictive. These corporate executives knew they were lying, the members of Congress knew they were lying, the American people knew they were lying and the rest of the world knew they were lying. Debs is correct as to this example– the U.S. Justice Dept should have prosecuted these executives. I could go on and on with more examples. And if I did, such criticism of mine would still be reserved in comparison to what could be said. But typically, my criticisms are towards widely known individual(s) about a specific action or statement, and it is never generalized in stone whereby all individuals in a society (in this case ‘Amerika’) are assumed to think as a monolith. It appears that only Americans, as a group, are criticized in this fashion, or at least 98% of the time. I recently attended a function at the penthouse of a current Board member of the NYT. With so many ties to corporate heads throughout the U.S. (and the rest of the world), one would maybe assume that this person was born and educated in the U.S. This assumption would be wrong. The world is a big place and there are influential people everywhere. It is a global economy and everyone should realize by now that the business of government is business. This is true the world over. And if one has read my posts over the years, I also have a constant theme – a fight against what I refer to as “global corporatism”. I define corporatism not as that found typically in a dictionary, but as a fascist type collusion of governments and private corporations. Americans are indentured and burdened to this corporatism without their consent just like so many others in this world. And contradictory as it may seem, Americans are not the only ones that seem so willing to accept this burden.

As an aside, I offer for comment a simple far off-topic regarding culture and deception. There is an astounding increasing rate of plastic surgeries in some non-western cultures. Visual deceptions (Is it fair to call it deception?) of a personal nature are surgically performed on countless numbers of people and desired by perhaps billions more people, and for what purpose? Is it to look more “western” or “American”? I recently viewed a documentary where such a western look is now deemed almost a necessity for a woman’s (or man’s) career in the new modern China. If true, I am sorry to see such a trend. And this “westernization” body molding is happening not just in China. Isn’t this cosmetic surgery a type of “culture of deception” even though exhibited at a personal level? But without a doubt, in cases of accident or deformity, cosmetic surgery is truly a positive procedure.

Before wandering off this thread topic any further, I wish to thank Uncle’s and Lizard’s posts/video links concerning McClellan’s deception. And yes, Alabama is correct that we must consider everyone thoughts. I learn from everyone here. It is disgusting that after all this death and destruction, McClellan is now speaking up – and in a half-ass manner at that. And just in time with his book release. I rarely use the F’er-word, but in this case, such a word as a derogatory description of him is too mild. McClellan portrays self-righteousness and deception in the extreme.

Posted by: Rick | May 30 2008 23:57 utc | 25>Helena Cobban on little scottie:

Scott McClellan, could you express some remorse to the family members of Iraqi civilians killed by and because of the US invasion of their country?

Scott McClellan, could you express some remorse to the family members of the 4,080 American citizens killed, and the scores of thousands maimed forever, because of Pres. Bush's decision to invade Iraq?

To me, the Scott McClellan story is not primarily "about" what happens inside the Washington Beltway. It is about the harm the war has inflicted on millions of people outside the Beltway-- both in outside-the-Beltway America and overseas. Can Scott McClellan look into a camera and speak to those people and say, "I am truly sorry for the part I played in implementing the President's plan to prepare for and launch the invasion."

Will he give the royalty earnings from this book to charities that work to reconstruct the shattered lives of Iraqis and of US war veterans? That would be one solid good move.

Posted by: anna missed | May 31 2008 7:19 utc | 26

Rick: thank you for articulating something i've been brooding over during the last few days, as evident by recent posts. i am just as eager to criticize the policies of my government and the attitudes of my fellow americans, but some of the rhetoric here at MoA distracts itself by focusing on what is not just an amerikan problem.

that said, today is the birthday of Walt Whitman--a great AMERICAN poet who could not have formed his verse in any other place, so to celebrate i'm going to take a goddamned shot of whiskey, blast some Patti Smith, and enjoy these last weeks of spring before what we all know is coming arrives.

Year that trembled and reel'd beneath me!
Your summer wind was warm enough, yet the air I
breathed froze me,
A thick gloom fell through the sunshine and darken'd me,
Must I change my triumphant songs? said I to myself,
Must I indeed learn to change the cold dirges of the baffled?
And sullen hymns of defeat?

the answer, of course, is yes.

Posted by: Lizard | Jun 1 2008 3:32 utc | 27

sorry, second to last line of the poem should read chant instead of change

i guess the propaganda is working better than i thought

Posted by: Lizard | Jun 1 2008 3:40 utc | 28

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