Wednesday, November 01, 2006
Nothing But Lies
Gene Lyons reports,
Has Bushism degenerated into a cult? It’s definitely starting to look like one. "When it came time [to vote] on whether to allow the Central Intelligence Agency to continue to detain and question terrorists," Bush claimed, "almost 80 percent of the House Democrats voted against it." "Just say no," chanted the infatuated crowd on cue.It's not just Bush's campaign audience that's chanting on cue. Whatever Bush says, the so-called liberal media repeat uncritically. It's a terrible thing when John Kerry botches a joke, but when Bush tells outright lies... well, I guess that's "dog bites man", so it's not news. Speaking of John Kerry, I'm getting really tired of reading that he voted to invade Iraq. That "authorization of force" vote authorized the Commander in Chief to take military action against the people who were behind the September 11 attacks. Which Iraq was not. I'm more than half convinced that George W. Bush doesn't know he's lying. He's a narcissist in the DSM-IV sense: whatever he says becomes the truth because he says it. What's the news media's excuse for reporting what he says as if he really did alter reality by saying it? Are they afraid they're going to be sent to the cornfield if they annoy him?
That "authorization of force" vote authorized the Commander in Chief to take military action against the people who were behind the September 11 attacks. Which Iraq was not.
Here is the resolutiom. Skip the whereases, because they have no legal force.
SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES.
(a) AUTHORIZATION- The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to
(1) defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and
(2) enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.
(b) PRESIDENTIAL DETERMINATION- In connection with the exercise of the authority granted in subsection (a) to use force the President shall, prior to such exercise or as soon thereafter as may be feasible, but no later than 48 hours after exercising such authority, make available to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate his determination that
(1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and
(2) acting pursuant to this resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorists attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.
They voted to let the president decide whether Iraq was a threat and whether UN resolutions had been enforced or not. All he had to do was certify that diplomacy would either not protect the US or result in the enforcement of UN resolutions and that invasion of Iraq was "consistent" with taking "the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including" the 9/11 terrorists.
It's extraordinarily broad language. At the time, the Senators comforted themselves that they had required Bush to certify things. But it amounted to washing their hands of responsibility.
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