Saturday, November 12, 2005

Digging a deeper hole

One good thing to do, if nearly 60 percent of the country has concluded that you are a liar, is to stop lying.

This evidently has not occurred to President Bush, who, in addition to equating dissent with treason (despite an upfront disclaimer), is still making the false claims that (a) everyone in Congress had access to the same intelligence as he did (rather than just the parts the Administration chose to share), and (b) the Administration has been cleared by independent inquiries of slanting the prewar Iraq intelligence info.

The Washington Post puts this a bit gingerly in a straight news story, entitled "Asterisks Dot White House's Iraq Argument," and stating in its second paragraph that "neither assertion is wholly accurate."

The Post article is also kind enough to state: "The administration's overarching point is true: Intelligence agencies overwhelmingly believed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction..."

But that is not the point in dispute, which is whether, in addition to the honest mistake that everyone on all sides made, the Administration also made dishonest mistakes by deliberately hyping what it knew were false particulars.

If I genuinely believe it is cold outside and everyone shares this belief, I am still lying if I falsely claim that a thermometer says it is 14 degrees.

8 comments:

Mark Witte said...

It was worth worrying about whether Iraq was working to get WMD, but once Hans Blix and company were running through Colin Powell's list of suspected locations for such weapons and finding nothing, pushing on toward invasion was really unforgivable.

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