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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 05:22 PM   #41
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by 2B
. . . Any review of the data at the time comes up with the same conclusion. Iraq was actively working on WMD. They were intentionally frustrating the UN inspectors. No credible person claimed they didn't have WMD based on the available data. The entire leadership of both parties riled at their WMDs. Only after the fact, does one party act "shocked" and try to make it appear that there was an intentional attempt to mislead the American people.

Good story. But it's not true. Actually most of the world concluded that there was no proof of WMDs. Most of the world refused to go along with the invasion. Even the US voters resisted the administration's push to justify invading for several months. The story from Bush and Cheny changed 3 or 4 times before they were able to make one of their lies stick.

But rest assured, it's Clinton's fault.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 06:15 PM   #42
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Re: More political ranting

The publicly disclosed portions of the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraqi WMDs indicated the consensus of the US intel community was that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.

Prominent Democrats and Republicans in Congress had access to the same information as the President, they reached the same conclusion. Other nations with their own independent intelligence sources were reportedly in agreement. The only significant international apologists for Saddam were France and Russia--and what we have since learned of the UN's graft-ridden oil-for-influence program and the Iraqi's own reports of payolla makes it abundantly clear why officals in these nations were in his corner.

When an individual makes a statement he/she knows is untrue, we call that a "lie." When an individual makes a statement believing it is true, but which later turns out to be untrue, we call that a "mistake." Seems simple enough, if we take off our conspiracy helmet for a moment.

Does anyone doubt that the war would have been avoided if Saddam had complied with the UN resolutions calling for complete access for the inspectors? Does anyone doubt that Iraq was in breach of the agreement that ended the first Gulf War (remember, the one in which they invaded Kuwait?), which was the genesis of the later resolutions?

WMD was one issue, but not the only one, that led the US and allies to the decision to go to war. How many additional dead Iraqis would there be if here had been no war?


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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 06:52 PM   #43
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee
But rest assured, it's Clinton's fault.
Clinton is the only president that I am aware of that confessed to a felony -- purjury. It was well under reported but he lost his law license for a short period of time.

My big issue with Clinton is that he had several opportunities to "lead" and never chose to. He was the perpetual "sort of" president. He was always seeing how the wind blew and looking at how it would impact public opinion. Things went ok while he was president and that was fine with him.

Jefferson who had a number of issues is considered "great" because he seized the opportunity for the Louisiana Purchase.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 07:13 PM   #44
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Re: More political ranting

The neo-con strategy: Repeat the lies like a religious chant and blame Clinton.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 07:17 PM   #45
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee
The neo-con strategy: Repeat the lies like a religious chant and blame Clinton.
With all due respect.....I doubt you know what a neo-con is.
You can look it up though.

JG
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 07:22 PM   #46
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by 2B
Clinton is the only president that I am aware of that confessed to a felony -- purjury. It was well under reported but he lost his law license for a short period of time.

My big issue with Clinton is that he had several opportunities to "lead" and never chose to. He was the perpetual "sort of" president. He was always seeing how the wind blew and looking at how it would impact public opinion. Things went ok while he was president and that was fine with him.

Jefferson who had a number of issues is considered "great" because he seized the opportunity for the Louisiana Purchase.
I'll tell you what........The Louisiana Purchase just about tops anything
(commerce-wise) done since. Maybe buyig Alaska? Of course,
Manhattan was a good deal, also.

JG
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 07:23 PM   #47
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Re: More political ranting

Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem
The publicly disclosed portions of the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraqi WMDs indicated the consensus of the US intel community was that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
Prominent Democrats and Republicans in Congress had access to the same information as the President, they reached the same conclusion. Other nations with their own independent intelligence sources were reportedly in agreement.
I don't have any tickets any more, but I can understand the implications behind that public statement. It sounds like there was plenty to work with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem
WMD was one issue, but not the only one, that led the US and allies to the decision to go to war. How many additional dead Iraqis would there be if here had been no war?
Let's not forget the Americans who died during Gulf War I, of Gulf War Syndrome, and during OPERATION SOUTHERN WATCH. It was time to end the watchful waiting.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 07:44 PM   #48
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by Mr._johngalt
With all due respect.....I doubt you know what a neo-con is.
You can look it up though.

JG
Brilliant . . . just brilliant.

The GWB appologists just redefine what the word "fact" means. They say it with authority and believe that means it's true.

Hey, if "other nations with their own independent intelligence sources" were in agreement, why did they make public statements that they did not see convincing evidence and refuse to be part of the invasion?

Only this administration claims that congress had equal access to the information.

It would be interesting indeed to examine the death rate of Iraqis before and after the invasion.

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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-26-2006, 08:57 PM   #49
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee


The GWB appologists

I hope you are not including me in this group. BTW, that's a pretty
serious spelling error.

JG
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 07:07 AM   #50
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Re: More political ranting

Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem
The publicly disclosed portions of the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraqi WMDs indicated the consensus of the US intel community was that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
I was sucked in by this BS at the time as was most of the country. To be fair to us, even Clinton believed it to be the case. He didn't understand that his bombing of Iraq (widely opposed by the republicans as a distraction from more important semen stained skirts) had completely destroyed Iraqs WMD infrastructure which was shaky at the time and never even started on the road back.

Quote:
Prominent Democrats and Republicans in Congress had access to the same information as the President, they reached the same conclusion.
False. Only a few members had access to this info. The vast majority had access to only the public portions. Also, the members who did have access, had only what made it up to the NIE. The were not privy to the earlier discussions that were shut down. The President and his staff, however, had access to the whole shebang and to the intelligence community doubts which they chose to ignore because they had already made up their minds.[/quote]

Quote:
Does anyone doubt that the war would have been avoided if Saddam had complied with the UN resolutions calling for complete access for the inspectors?
In fact the inspectors had been unable to find any WMD in months and months of looking - during the later months of the effort they were largely unobstructed, albeit a lot of hostile comments were spewing out of Saddam. What is obvious in hindsight is that Saddam had complied - or, rather, been bombed into compliance. If the inspectors had returned to Iraq, the Bush Administration would never have accepted findings that the WMD program was defunct because they "knew" Iraq had them. They would just have asserted that they weapons were well hidden.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 07:18 AM   #51
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Re: More political ranting

Rewrite history all you want. It seems to happen often when a Republican leader is in the Oval Office. It is only later that history is corrected and the truth comes out.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 07:31 AM   #52
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by lets-retire
Rewrite history all you want. It seems to happen often when a Republican leader is in the Oval Office. It is only later that history is corrected and the truth comes out.
This is not really true. First of all, the GOP has no monopoly on lying, deception, hiding facts, etc. Secondly, "history" is not always accurate
either for lots of reasons. Sometimes, it is even rewritten after it is
written to achieve a particular slant. Political correctness is one good
example.

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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 09:30 AM   #53
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Re: More political ranting

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
I was sucked in by this BS at the time as was most of the country. To be fair to us, even Clinton believed it to be the case. He didn't understand that his bombing of Iraq (widely opposed by the republicans as a distraction from more important semen stained skirts) had completely destroyed Iraqs WMD infrastructure which was shaky at the time and never even started on the road back.
I'm not clear on what you think an NIE is. By definition it is a consensus view of the US intelligence community (IC). Here are the lead paragraphs from the "Key Judgements" of the Oct 2002 NIE:

"We judge that Iraq has continued its weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs in defiance of UN resolutions and restrictions. Baghdad has chemical and biological weapons as well as missiles with ranges in excess of UN restrictions; if left unchecked, it probably will have a nuclear weapon during this decade. (See INR alternative view at the end of these Key Judgments.)

We judge that we are seeing only a portion of Iraq’s WMD efforts, owing to Baghdad’s vigorous denial and deception efforts. Revelations after the Gulf war starkly demonstrate the extensive efforts undertaken by Iraq to deny information. We lack specific information on many key aspects of Iraq’s WMD programs."

(In retrospect, that last sentence definitely qualifies as an understatement!)

Only the Dept of State expressed an "alternative view." They believed Saddam had a limited program to develop nuclar weapons, but did not assess that the program was "integrated and comprehensive." They did not dissent concerning the CW and BW programs. Everyone agreed (and there is widespread agreement to this day) that Saddam had developed long-range missiles that were in violation of the UN limits. I wonder why he needed these? Perhaps to shoot off during Saddam Day celebrations? Or maybe as CW/BW delivery vehicles? Inquiring minds wanted to know.

You weren't "sucked in"--you were making the same assessment others were making based on what they/you knew. If you talked with people about Iraq's WMD at the time, were you "lieing", or just "mistaken?"

Here's a link to the released portion of the 2002 NIE "Key Findings."
http://homepage.ntlworld.com/jksonc/...md.html#inr-n1

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
False. Only a few members had access to this info. The vast majority had access to only the public portions. Also, the members who did have access, had only what made it up to the NIE. The were not privy to the earlier discussions that were shut down.
Wrong in several respects. I said "prominent," not "many" There were both Republican and Democtartic members of the SSCI and the HPSCI. When leaders of the intel community testify before them (which is a very frequent occurance) the members can pose any questions they want--and get answers. John Kerry was a member of the SSCI until 2001.

These commitees have access to FAR more than just NIEs. Here's what they routinely receive (excerpted from a CRS report)
From the National Intelligence Community (NIC).
- National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs) (20-30 page long reports)
- Intelligence Community Briefs (ICBs): estimative intelligence products that are formatted as six-page, quick-turn-around, analytic papers focusing on particular issues.
- Sense of Community Memos: one-page memoranda that evaluate current or day-to-day events. They are Community-coordinated and approved by the NIC chairman for dissemination.
- Conference Reports: Memoranda-for-the-record of conferences that the NIC sponsors on various topics. In addition to Intelligence Community personnel, participants can include experts from outside the Community.

From the CIA:
- The Senior Executive Intelligence Brief (SEIB): Known for decades as the National Intelligence Daily and viewed by the CIA as one of its flagship products, (44) is a daily publication containing six to eight relatively short articles or briefs covering an array of topics.
- Serial Fliers (SFs): Short and concise memorandum-style products, generally a few pages in length, on a discrete topic of current relevance. SFs generally do not contain summaries, but may contain graphics or maps.
- Intelligence Assessments (IAs): The primary vehicle for in-depth research.
- Strategic Perspective Series (SPSs), like IAs, are based on extensive research, but are focused on a key strategic issue - frequently at the direction of the Directorate of Intelligence leadership.
- Research Projects/Papers (RPs): Tthe primary vehicle used to explore new analytic research areas and to develop the Directorate of Intelligence's corporate knowledge of a given issue.
- Leadership Profiles (LPs): Biographic assessments of foreign leaders.
- Situation Reports: Short reports that comment on current, fast-breaking events. Up to two or three situation reports can be issued daily, if warranted.

Department of Defense.
- Military Intelligence Digest (MID) is produced by the Defense Intelligence Agency and is seen as a military-oriented counterpart to the SEIB.

I am NOT trying to say that it is reasonable that these lawmakers should have performed their own analysis and come to a different conclusion regarding Iraqi WMDs. But, they were aware of the of how the intel community was operating on this very important question. If the legislative branch is not going to accept some measure of responsibility for the failure of the intel community to get this right, then a reasonable person might ask what their function is, and whether their involvement in the process (at the cost of tons of meetings, staff papers produced for them, etc) is serving a useful function.

Now, I am concerned about reports that VP Cheney, together with a group of folks with which he has an ideological kinship, had a role in steering/shading the conclusions of the intel community and in reworking products until they were "suitable." We should all be concerned if/when any administartion cooks the books. For a good case history, look at what LBJ and Nixon did with the very solid assessments they got concerning the Vietnam situation, and the results of failing to see the world as it truly was. Do we need to beware of the same problem re: Iraq? Yes.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 10:59 AM   #54
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by samclem
Now, I am concerned about reports that VP Cheney, together with a group of folks with which he has an ideological kinship, had a role in steering/shading the conclusions of the intel community and in reworking products until they were "suitable." We should all be concerned if/when any administartion cooks the books. For a good case history, look at what LBJ and Nixon did with the very solid assessments they got concerning the Vietnam situation, and the results of failing to see the world as it truly was. Do we need to beware of the same problem re: Iraq? Yes.
Downing Street Memo:

"C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."

"The Attorney-General said that the desire for regime change was not a legal base for military action."


Add in the forged Nigeria "yellow cake" documents, and their reference in a Presidential speech, and it sure looks like someone was fixing the facts "around the policy."

The 10/02 NIE states,

“Finally, the claims of Iraqi pursuit of natural uranium in Africa are, in INR’s assessment, highly dubious.”

George Tenet writes,

"The background above makes it even more troubling that the 16 words eventually made it into the State of the Union speech. This was a mistake."

Ooops!

(Bold added.)
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 11:21 AM   #55
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Re: More political ranting

Mr. Epstein says he differentiates between facts and ideas. But facts do not appear all by themselves. Every "fact" is selected from millions of possible facts, thru the use of ideas. It is our ideas that give rise to facts.

First come the ideas, e.g., distance or time or temperature or personal status. Next appear the facts, e.g., three inches, 1.2564 light years or seven days, 1.250 nanoseconds or "It's warmer today than yesterday," absolute zero or King Edward I or Chairperson Jones.

Whether our ideas are innate or simple or complex, it is only through them that facts appear.

--William Eichler

This letter to the editor was in the WSJ Wednesday. I find it germaine.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 12:13 PM   #56
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Re: More political ranting

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Originally Posted by Apocalypse
Mr. Epstein says he differentiates between facts and ideas. But facts do not appear all by themselves. Every "fact" is selected from millions of possible facts, thru the use of ideas. It is our ideas that give rise to facts.

First come the ideas, e.g., distance or time or temperature or personal status. Next appear the facts, e.g., three inches, 1.2564 light years or seven days, 1.250 nanoseconds or "It's warmer today than yesterday," absolute zero or King Edward I or Chairperson Jones.

Whether our ideas are innate or simple or complex, it is only through them that facts appear.

--William Eichler

This letter to the editor was in the WSJ Wednesday. I find it germaine.
In science and engineering we used to say, "All models are wrong . . . it's just a matter of degree. And all measurements are wrong becuase they all depend on models."

But there can, and often is, a big difference in the degree.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 01:25 PM   #57
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Re: More political ranting

Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem
I'm not clear on what you think an NIE is. By definition it is a consensus view of the US intelligence community (IC). Here are the lead paragraphs from the "Key Judgements" of the Oct 2002 NIE:

Now, I am concerned about reports that VP Cheney, together with a group of folks with which he has an ideological kinship, had a role in steering/shading the conclusions of the intel community and in reworking products until they were "suitable." We should all be concerned if/when any administartion cooks the books. For a good case history, look at what LBJ and Nixon did with the very solid assessments they got concerning the Vietnam situation, and the results of failing to see the world as it truly was. Do we need to beware of the same problem re: Iraq? Yes.
Good post Samclem. I guess I have to agree that the information available to us reasonably led us to believe that Iraq had serious WMD. What I have read since then about Wolfowicz, Perl, Cheney, Rummy, et. al., brow beating the intelligence community into cherry picking weak intelligence is what irritates the hell out of me. For what it is worth, I never said or believed that Bush lied. I assume he believed what he said. Those around him probably believed it as well - but they knew it was based on flimsy intelligence and took the chance to lead us to war anyway. And none of them is willing to admit a mistake (in any real sense) to this day. How could anyone trust them to lead us going forward.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 02:59 PM   #58
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Re: More political ranting

donheff.. possibly right in that Bush may have believed what he wanted to believe. He is notoriously "incurious." (I don't give Cheney a pass for a NY minute..). There's a horrible pathos in watching them have to half-swallow their words nowadays. Rumsfeld just recently: "Back off.. relax ... it's complicated."

Funny, a couple minutes earlier for Rumsfeld it wasn't "complicated" at all!:
http://thinkprogress.org/2006/10/26/...ld-benchmarks/ .
Quote:
QUESTION: Sir, what I don’t understand about the benchmark plan — if we can call it that — is what happens if and when the Iraqi government fails to meet the timelines, projections, whatever you want to call them, for some of the major benchmarks?

I mean, we’ve been told that they’re not given ultimatums, but we’ve also been told by the president in recent days that U.S. patience is not unlimited.

But I don’t understand. There must be consequences or responses built into this plan. Can you address that at all?

RUMSFELD: Well, it’s a political season. And everyone’s trying to make a little mischief out of this, and make — turn it into a political football, and see if we can’t get it on the front page of every newspaper and find a little daylight between what the Iraqis say or someone in the United States says or somebody else in the United States says.

And it is not complicated. I’ve explained it two or three times. The president did an excellent job of explaining it yesterday.

And the situation is this. It is that the United States, in the persons of our ambassador and the Embassy and General Casey and his team, have been, over a period of time, in continuous discussions with the Iraqi government at various levels. And they’ve been discussing the way forward through the rest of this year and next year. That’s a perfectly logical thing for them to do.

[…]

Now, you’re looking for some sort of a guillotine to come falling down if some date isn’t met. That is not what this is about.
This is complicated stuff. It’s difficult. We’re looking out into the future. No one can predict the future with absolute certainty.

So you ought to just back off, take a look at it, relax, understand that it’s complicated, it’s difficult. Honorable people are working on these things together. There isn’t any daylight between them. They’ll be discussing this and discussing that. They may have a change there, a change here. But it’ll get worked out.
Maybe the American people are tired of being talked down to...
.. the advice to "relax" is tone-deaf as always.

An interesting article:
Quote:
The two faces of Rumsfeld

2000: director of a company which wins $200m contract to sell nuclear reactors to North Korea
2002: declares North Korea a terrorist state, part of the axis of evil and a target for regime change
http://www.guardian.co.uk/korea/arti...952289,00.html
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 04:19 PM   #59
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Re: More political ranting

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
. . .What I have read since then about Wolfowicz, Perl, Cheney, Rummy, et. al., brow beating the intelligence community into cherry picking weak intelligence is what irritates the hell out of me. For what it is worth, I never said or believed that Bush lied. I assume he believed what he said. Those around him probably believed it as well - but they knew it was based on flimsy intelligence and took the chance to lead us to war anyway. And none of them is willing to admit a mistake (in any real sense) to this day. How could anyone trust them to lead us going forward.
That's generous of you donheff. But that sounds like a lie to me. If you knowingly create a document that is intentionally deficient of facts and designed to supress the whole truth . . . isn't that a lie? What would your mother have told you about that kind of behavior?

Just because GWB is mentally slow doesn't mean he is incapable of lying. Just because he feels that development of false documents is justified and believes he is right, doesn't make him blameless. He has gotten away with a boatload of terrible decisions with that, "Ah shucks", attitude. Maybe he is truely too stupid to see that his administration has supressed the whole truth at every turn, but I think that is unlikely. I think if it were their children doing it, most parents today would consider the kind of behavior GWB has repeatedly been involved in to be lying. I consider it lying based on your description of the facts.
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Re: More political ranting
Old 10-27-2006, 04:49 PM   #60
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Re: More political ranting

Face the facts.

The "Crawford Chimp" should have kept his eye on Afghanistan and killed or captured Osama.

Instead, he thought he knew better, and like the "Gulf of Tonkin", trumped up WMD and punched the "tarbaby".

You had the world on your side after 9-11 and you totally f*cked it up with Iraq.

You suckered the UK and Australia.

Your best friends, the Canadians said don't do it. The Europeans and 90% of the world knew WMD was a crock.

EDIT I agree with the 60% of Americans who disapprove of President Bush, but it seems inappropriate to call our President a chimp. Intellectually lazy, ignorant, devious, and unqualified--OK. But apelike and entertaining? I don't think so.
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