December 9, 2008

Um, no

The LA Times has a memo passed around Bush's admin with talking points for his legacy. You know, saying that he kept us safe, and responded to the economic problems with "bold measures," and bragging about his tax cuts. But my favorite:
"'Above all, George W. Bush promised to uphold the honor and the dignity of his office. And through all the challenges and trials of his time in office, that is a charge that our president has kept.'"
Um, no. There is nothing dignified about this man, and just to put it simply, honorable people don't torture. It isn't very complicated.


Everyone knows that corruption and stupidity are not unique to this administration nor to the GOP. And today, we get news that Democratic Governor Rod Blagojevich has been arrested by the FBI. Looks like he was so stupid he thought he could sell Obama's Senate seat for actual money for him and his wife.



But back to Bush. The Daily Show interview last night was with the former interrogator who argues that our torture has been counter-productive and he was able to get valuable information by building relationships with even actual terrorists. This morning, I heard this story on Maher Arar, (we have blogged about him before) who was accused by the US of being in al-Qaeda and sent to Syria to be tortured by them. This process is called "extraordinary rendition," and to be absolutely fair, the Clinton administration did some of this too. In their case, they at least officially required that the receiving country have a warrant on the person, and that they not torture. They did not send suspects to countries like, well, Syria, because they knew that country had a lousy human rights record and was likely to torture. The Bush people sent Maher Arar there anyway, and Arar recounts how the Syrians beat him with 2 inch electrical cables. He wants some legal recognition from our government of what we did to him, and I hope he gets it.

Our government did that to him, and to countless others. They tortured in our name, or sent people to torturing countries to be tortured. This is horrific, and still amazing that George Bush sees himself as a person of honor.

He is not honorable, and he has dishonored all of us. We can fight evil without becoming evil. We can do better than we have this last 8 years.

We must.


Hillary said...

Blagojevich must be a closet republican, or must have thought he was; how else to explain his actions?

leighton said...

Gary/Curtis/Pharoh [sic], I'm pretty sure you're the only one around who thinks any one political group can have a monopoly on either virtue or vice.

Tony said...

Come now, Leighton. Everyone knows how moral Republicans are. Just ask one.

Streak said...


True, Republicans do like to play the "moral values" card. I saw a funny comment from a conservative commentator about the Blago thing--something about finally a political scandal that was safe for kids. :)

This is pretty old school political corruption. I think what shocks most observers is just the unbelievable stupidity of this particular one. Someone from the Chicago area referred to Blagojevich as kind of like George Bush but not quite so smart.


leighton said...

On the upside, the Stupidest U.S. Governor competition this year is going to be a real nailbiter. Poor bookies probably haven't slept in three days.

Streak said...

This is the first time I have thought another politician made Palin look less dumb.

steves said...

Illinois is unbelievable. How do these people keep getting elected?

Streak said...

I don't think I realized just how corrupt the state was. I knew about Ryan, of course, but didn't realize the depth of corruption in the state beyond him.

I also wonder how that works. Perhaps it is a reminder to us that democracy is an incredibly fragile and difficult thing.