Follow the leader right into the ditch
George W. Bush doesn't much care for democracy. He doesn't care much what anyone thinks, not his constituents, and certainly not the rest of the world.
And not only does he not defend America's core moral values, standards, and civil rights, but he has actively and consistently used the "war on terror" as an excuse to lower them or destroy them altogether.
One of the series of almost embarassing things that Bush the Lesser has attempted lately, is to go on a podium pounding crusade to argue that he should be able to pervert the Geneva Convention protocols for the treatment of prisoners of war by making up his own definition of what constitutes torture and inhuman treatment.
Bush, in his semi-coherant style, is attempting to argue that the Geneva Accords need "clarification", and right this minute. Even though they've been respected and followed by the U.S. and other "civilized" countries in dozens of wars over the span of over 50 years.
Bush's motivation in this weird quest is to try to shield U.S. agents, and perhaps even members of his administration and himself, from possibly being prosecuted for war crimes.
What Bush is arguing for is akin to you or I committing a murder and then arguing that the law should be changed retroactively so that murder was not a crime back when we did the killing.
He wants to play weasely legal games, aided by the oily Alberto Gonzales, with this long established cornerstone to civilized conflict in order to justify and make legal all the blatantly illegal measures that he's approved of and ordered since 9-11.
No wonder he seems almost panicky and more unhinged than usual when he argues for this. He thinks this might prove a personal embarassment down the road and his legacy might be in danger.
Bush's political survival has always been the guiding principle behind all his decisions, always rising above the good of the country or even the deaths and torture of thousands, including innocent women and children.
The danger that Bush is ignoring is the fact that if he's successful in this effort, future generations of captured U.S. service men and women will be far more likely to be subjected to inhuman treatment and torture.
But true to form, King George can't see past his own nose.
Bush and his regime think that they are literally kings of the world, that everything that has occured prior to Bush is irrelevant. They have such utter disdain and disrespect for history and precedent it's as if they truly think that history began on the day Bush was elected.
They think they're always right, demand to get their way no matter what, consider anyone who so much as questions them as the enemy and throw tantrums if they don't get their way. They act as though there's no one else on earth, and are incapable of seeing beyond their own egos and selfish desires.
This is all too familiar, as it's the kind of behavior we've all seen and endured from 2 year olds.
But now the entire world is suffering for this shallow and incurious dunce's malfeasance and the ideological blindness and utter incompetence of those around him.
Generations of painstakingly crafted argeements, treaties, and protocols are tossed in the trash without a thought if they prove inconvenient to their interest and desire for conquest and power.
Now Bush is insisting that the portion of the Geneva Accords dealing with detention of prisoners who don't fit into the catagory of uniformed soldiers and the use of torture "needs clarification".
This is Bushspeak for saying that he wants Gonzales to come up with some B.S. legal opinion crafted specifically to say that the illegal detention, torture and secretly shipping prisoners to foreign countries to avoid responsibility for torture that they've been doing for years is fine under the terms of the Geneva Convention.
In essence they're demanding that that pesky law against murder be re-written so that the exact type of murder they committed is rationalized away as legal. Retroactively, of course.
But more importantly, and why he seems panicky and extra urgent about it, is that he wants this done before the Republicans lose the house.
In order to keep CIA and others, including his administration, from being tried for war crimes, Bush would rather cover his own ass than protect future generations of U.S. service men and women who will be captured by the enemy.
It doesn't take a really bright person to figure out that if we start to decide what rules of the Geneva Convention we want to follow by disingenously making some twisted legal argument that certain torture proceedures are allowed by the treaty, that it opens the door wide to any country who captures our service men or women to do the same thing.
North Vietnam did this by classifying it's prisoners like John McCain as "war criminals" rather than prisoners of war, and therefore arguing that they didn't have to comply with the Geneva Convention.
Bush is now pounding the lecture and demanding that we should be allowed to do the same thing. Actually, he HAS been doing it ever since 9-11, but now wants to, long after the fact, twist things around to state that it complies with the Geneva Accords.
As I've noted in the past, the only hope for stopping or standing up to the radicals in the White House was if Republicans did it. This is a sad situation, but true. The media plays the Dems as if they're some side show and use them as props, never giving their views or policies any serious attention. The Dems are so impotent that one wonders why they even show up at the Capitol.
Republicans have taken a few small shots at Bush & Co. in the past when the stupidity from the White House has gone so far over the line that even the incredibly disciplined and lock-step Republicans couldn't swallow it.
Now it's taken two statements by Colin Powell, and the opposition in the senate by Sen. John Warner and Sen. John McCain in addition to several former members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to get a little press coverage of just how stupid and ill-considered Bush's petulant insistance that the Geneva conventions mean what he says it means, so there.
In his desire to cover his own ass and spare him the embarassment of having people hauled before war crimes courts, he's endangering all future soldiers, all but assuring that our troops will be sugjected to horrible treatment and torture.
This is the way he always operates. He simply puts NOTHING above his political future and power, no matter if in doing so it results in the deaths of thousands of innocent people, even if they're Americans. We've seen it in this "war on terror" as well as the aftermath of Katrina, and far too many other instances.
Consider the scenario if Bush gets his way and is allowed to hide behind a legal perversion designed to make what he's already guilty of ordering "OK".
The U.S. will be no better than Vietnam, Somalia, Iran, Iraq, or any other rougue state. It will no longer have any claim to have higher standards than it's opponents, and it will have thrown away what moral authority it has earned.
It will confirm to those in the mid-east and around the world that we are indeed barbarians as radical leaders have assured them we were, and take away the ability to righteously condemn the barbarity of terrorists.
And not only that, but it will fuel a downward spiral to even more barbaric and morally depraved actions by all parties to conflicts.
Bush wants to lead us down into the moral gutter with the "terrorists".
Should we follow?