Friday, February 17, 2006

Report card

Just so we don't forget what's what in the continually expanding bog of quicksand that is the Bush II administration, here's a short list of the crimes against the country committed by Bush, Cheney, et al, courtesy of right-wing Wall Street Journal opinion page editor Daniel Henninger. (Good to know even the Tories are keeping count!)
  • The stolen 2000 election (and the co-opting of the primarily Republican-nominated Supreme Court)
  • The possible stealing of the 2004 election (I'm just saying...)
  • The Enron corporate fiasco
  • Cheney's top-secret energy task force (and subsequent carving up of America's energy future between the big energy companies)
  • The continuing anti-"sunshine" actions designed to keep presidential papers secret and out of the eyes of the general public
  • Class-busting tax cuts for the wealthy (and resultant cuts in funding for valuable public programs), designed to eliminate the middle class and destroy what Republicans think of as the welfare state
  • Ignoring numerous warnings about al Queda (and botching internal intelligence efforts) that in effect enabled the 9/11 attacks to take place
  • The disgraceful response to the 9/11 attacks -- in effect channeling public sentiment into unjustified warmongering
  • The lying to the country (and to the United Nations) about Iraq's supposed weapons of mass destruction, as a pretext for war
  • The unmitigated gall in linking, however subtly (but quite effectively), Iraq to the 9/11 terrorist attacks
  • The unwarranted, unprovoked invasion of Iraq -- a country that posed no danger, immediate or otherwise, to America -- and the resultant deaths of at least 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians
  • The subsequent operational mismanagement of the Iraqi occupation, which set back that country's infrastructure by several decades and has led to what is in effect a nascent civil war
  • The related monetary mismanagement of the Iraqi occupation, in which billions of dollars have gone missing and favored "contractors" (such as Halliburton) have received no-bid contracts worth even more billions of dollars
  • The also-related underfunding of our fighting force, particularly in the form of non-existent body armor for our soldiers, forced conscription of unwilling National Guard troops (and equally unwanted extensions of their tours of duty), and the disgraceful way soldiers are treated by the military when they return home from combat
  • The illegal imprisonment of "enemy combatants," without any First Amendment or Geneva Convention rights, at Guantanamo Bay (and, via the use of "extraordinary rendition," in torture chambers throughout various uncivilized nations around the globe)
  • The use of torture (either implicitly condoned or explicitly ordered) on prisoners in Abu Grahib prison and at Guantanamo Bay
  • The criminally negligent response to the Hurricane Katrina disaster
  • Various and sundry financial/funding/lobbying scandals within the administration and the ranks of the Republican party, from Tom DeLay to Duke Cunningham to Bill Frist (and quite possibly beyond)
  • The illegal leaking of the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame, from deep within the bowels of the administration
  • The President's admitted unlawful and unconstitutional wiretapping of American citizens, in itself quite clearly an impeachable offense
  • The seeking of virtually unlimited presidential authority, in a bid to undermine the Constitution with an all-powerful imperial presidency

That may not be everything, but it's a good starter list. (And I didn't even mention Dick Cheney's shooting of his hunting partner -- the first VP shooting incident since Aaron Burr shot Alexander Hamilton.)

Of all these sins, I'm surprised that being the home team when al Queda attacked New York isn't seen as a bigger deal by the public. Having the world's largest terrorist attack take place on your watch is at best extreme negligence, at worst something bordering on enabling behavior or co-conspiracy. The fact that Bush then used that attack as a rationale to go to war in Iraq (and kill more than 100,000 civilians in the process) is an Orwellian act of such magnitude as to be almost inconceivable -- except that it really happened. You can't make this stuff up, folks.

Anyway, lest we (and our media) get too complacent, it's good to have a copy of this list handy. This isn't your average, run-of-the-mill, incompetent administration we have here, folks; this is the most dangerous, the most malevolent bunch of power-hungry despots our country has ever seen. And, given the general uber meat-eating nature of American politicians, that's saying a lot.

But that's just my opinion; reasonable minds may disagree.

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