September 7, 2007

Public bend over, the next round of big lies are coming

We've been told, repeatedly, though not consistently, by everyone in Washington that we just need to wait until September to finally learn the reality in Iraq, and then debate the way forward.

This is a huge and obvious dodge which has been readily embraced by officials of both parties.

First, Bush and the White House announced, and Republicans and spineless Dems all quickly embraced, the line that the heroic Gen. Petraeus was going to give the holy grail in September. Remember? This was their shield against anyone trying to actually come up with a plan for Iraq, and effectively halted all calls for and debate on a way to end the madness there.

Dems and Republicans alike leapt at the chance to be able to put off making any judgements or hard decisions on the matter, and gladly let the "surge" make it's increasingly bloody and by all objective accounts, ineffective course.

Bush said over and over again that he was relying on the vaunted General to make all the decisions and report back on how Bush's escalation was working.

A few weeks ago though, it was leaked that the General Petraeus report .... wasn't going to be written by Gen. Petraeus, but rather written and twisted by the White House and put out under his name, effectively making Petreus nothing but a mouthpiece... another sad repeat of a somewhat honorable man willingly throwing away his integrity to aid the White House effort to continue the war like they did to Colin Powell when they set him up to destroy his substantial credibility by delivering the false report at the U.N.

Bait and switch. A favorite and oft-used tactic of a White House for whom honesty is for suckers and to whom their political fortunes far outweigh the further loss of American lives in Iraq.

A full scale sales campaign in in full swing to sell (con) the public into thinking this Iraq business is .... amazingly and against all rational and verifiable evidence... really going well. Imagine that.

Former Bush press flack Ari Fliesher is heading a group funded to the tune of millions to run ads where images of the WTC falling is conflated once again with the doomed effort in Iraq, right wing flacks are taken to Iraq and given completely stage managed "tours", and then come back to make the press rounds reporting about how they "were there" and saw incredible progress on their pentagon scripted tours.

The hard evidence that little to no progress is being made is swept under the rug, such as the Government Accountibility Office (GAO) report which said there was no evidence of any improvement.

Some sugest this report was leaked to get the facts out before the White House ordered it altered to suit it's political goals, as it has done to independent government reports in the past.

It also ignores reportsfrom active duty soldiers, who were so insulted by the rosy reports of progress by administration shills that a group of them took the unprecidented step of collectively writing a rebuttal to them in an editorial in the New York Times which provided a boots on the ground view of the increased violence, death, and danger to our troops there, as well as the lack of any progress whatsoever in achieving even a marginally stable situation.

Now, after months of build-up, after Bush has dodged the issue for months as hundreds more Americans were killed and maimed in Iraq as politicians sat largely muzzled waiting for this definitive report, we learn that there won't be any actual Petraeus report at all!

Nope, (try to believe this) it's been learned that they've decided that there will be no written report whatsoever. Beyond Petraeus' written opening statement for his testimony before congress and some charts he may use, there will be nothing, no "report" at all. Nothing in writing for this President to study on such a crucial and monumental decision. He'll just talk with Petreaus for a while, that's good enough for him. It's doubtful he could manage to get though anything longer than a memo anyway, I suppose.

So after throwing water on any debate for months by pointing to this monumental report which would be delivered in September, now that it's days from being delievered, we're told there'll be nothing for the historical record, nothing for the pentagon or the public to review, nothing on paper at all.

Let's review.

First Bush repeatedly side-steps any discussion of strategy in Iraq and kicks the can down the road by saying he can't and won't make any decisions until Petraus, a general which he repeatedly seemed to be handing over the entire war to, issued a comprehensive report on the effectiveness of Bush's surge.

Then as the date nears, it's revealed that Petraeus won't be the author of his own report. The White House will bastardize it for their own purposes and then hide behind and use (abuse) Petraeus' credibility for their own purposes, just like they did Powell.

We learn that there will be no report in the traditional sense at all. It's vapor. Nothing.

Then there's the issue of how the pentagon and White House are twisting the statistics to give a misleading impression that there is great progress in Iraq.
They simply decided to not include mass killings from bombings which often produce, including recently, hundreds of deaths at a time. They've also come up with a convenient way to not count most of the violence and death by not counting the huge number of murders committed by one sect against members of their own sect. (as if that's easy to determine.) The fact is, the data is phoney.

As Paul Krugman notes in the New York Times:
Apparently, the Pentagon has a double super secret formula that it uses to distinguish sectarian killings (bad) from other deaths (not important); according to press reports, all deaths from car bombs are excluded, and one intelligence analyst told The Washington Post that “if a bullet went through the back of the head, it’s sectarian. If it went through the front, it’s criminal.” So the number of dead is down, as long as you only count certain kinds of dead people.

Oh, and by the way: Baghdad is undergoing ethnic cleansing, with Shiite militias driving Sunnis out of much of the city. And guess what? When a Sunni enclave is eliminated and the death toll in that district falls because there’s nobody left to kill, that counts as progress by the Pentagon’s metric.


If you're feeling like an abused spouse who is constantly lied to and disrespected by the Bush gang, and can see another one coming, you're justified.

But when it's shown that someone has told you bald-faced lies over and over and over again, at some point, it's your fault for continuing to believe them.

Now if the Dems could get out of their shivering crouch and stop letting the Republican aggressors define them, stop being cowards and stand up to the effort to portray them as "weak on defense" or somehow "not supporting the troops" when they're trying to get them out of a misguided and bloody mistake. If they could stop acting like abused spouses who continually enable and cave in to their more strident and manipulative Republican abusers, perhaps the country could make some progress in the messy and unpleasant business of trying to minimize the damage resulting from the disaster Bush has led it into.

20 Comments:

At 9/07/2007 1:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should we be surprised that you know more than those on the ground in Iraq?

 
At 9/07/2007 4:35 PM, Anonymous Sue; ShedAp Puhleez said...

Give 'em a break...Dubya and "Dick" hafta git that "Awl Bill" passed furst thang...you know...divvy up the prize....then they'll gitter dun over to thar in Iraki!

 
At 9/07/2007 5:06 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 1:06

I'm sick of having to pound it into your pointy little head, but ... (sigh)... I didn't say, nor did I even come close to suggesting, that I "know more than those on the ground in Iraq."

Though if you'd have bothered reading the editorial written by a group of grunts who WERE on the ground in Iraq and who clearly say that things are getting worse, not better, and that there's no hope of success as long as we continue following our present strategy in Iraq, you'd know that there are very many of those "on the ground" in Iraq that know very well the lies being sold to the public by this administration.

If you want to continue being the kid of guy who finds another mans shoes under your bed and is aware that your wife spends every afternoon having "Ben" come over "to talk", and the shoes are Ben's size and you've already caught them in bed 6 times and you are still willing to believe her when she says they're just "friends" and nothing's going on..... then that's your choice.

When this administration and this president has been caught in so many demonstrable lies and willfull deceptions, when they've lied to the country and the world as a matter of course for many years now, when the rest of the world and a large majority of even the gullible public realizes they're lying their asses off, if you want to continue to believe their bullshit, then go for it.

I prefer to believe more credible sources, such as just about EVERYONE ELSE who knows about the situation.

And PLEASE... if you have to resort to pulling stuff out of your ass to attack me, save everyone the trouble and just don't bother.

I publish such garbage to avoid the screams of "censorship", but it's not worth it. Dumbass swipes like your comment don't deserve to be printed and will henceforth go to the slop bucket.

 
At 9/07/2007 5:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bush could make the statement, "The sky is blue" - and you would say that he is a liar!

 
At 9/07/2007 6:02 PM, Anonymous sue; shedap puhleez said...

Dear Mr. Dope,
Please keep a few of Mr. A.1:06 PM Dumasse's comments, so that the rest of the us can enjoy your repartee with him.
The laughter that rolls out of my belly helps offset the twist and agony felt there when I carry a little kid to school (my job; pre-school bus-driver) and he tells me his dad (soldier) is "leaving for work for a long time" and he watched him go way up in an airplane...
Regarding the audacity, arrogance, manipulative use of our government and our assets, etc. of this administration for.....WHAT exactly...we will have to wait to find out in the impeachments and/or criminal trials to come...it is truly mind-boggling.
And in the words of one of the more "colorful" mayors of Chicago, Harold Washington: "we're not lump-lumps here!"
At least not all of us.....
Thank-you

 
At 9/07/2007 9:24 PM, Blogger Benton Harbor said...

Dope: A bit of Patraeus' upcoming report was given on NBC News and it certainly didn't seem rosey. A slightly expanded story about the same thing was shown on MSNBC (I think)and it was noting the same thing. Basically he was saying that while there were some positive results in places, the overall "surge" had results less than hoped for and expected.

After having that much - or little - reported on already, it will be interesting to hear all he has to say. Supposedly some of what he has to report has already been released in a letter to the troops.

I'll await judgement on whether or not that leak about the White House writing the report is true or not.

 
At 9/08/2007 2:00 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anonydunce,

The sad part is I'd probably be right.

Don't think, just click your heels together three times and repeat, "I believe George Bush, I believe George Bush..."

 
At 9/08/2007 2:13 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

BH,

Thanks for that report. I've been running around like the proverbial chicken with its head cut off and haven't caught any of the coverage.

If the non-report "report" is as honest as what you saw it described as, that would be heartening and go a long way towards proving all the respect and deference that's been given towards Petraeus.

Not only that, it would be a huge relief to see at least some respect being paid to the actual truth, rather than a complete B.S. job like we've been fed for so long on this matter.

I have no doubts that there is, and probably always have been all along, instances that could be pointed to and described as "successes". But the fact remains that the overall picture is extremely grim, and it appears that Bush's idea that the situation requires more military involvement has long ago been acknowledged as false by everyone but Bush, including a great many generals and other defense officials.

Every serious person involved freely states that there is no military solution to the morass in Iraq, and as I said, the only one who appears wedded to that disasterous idea is George Bush.

I truly hope that this long-awaited briefing (not a report) will indeed be credible and that the debate on the way forward can be engaged in based on actual facts and reality, not rosy scenarios concocted by party hacks at the White House.

I would have been very disappointed if Petraeus appeared to have been made into a stooge of the Bushies and repeated their faith based assessments of the "progress" in Iraq in order to give Bush political cover to continue to essentially do nothing about Iraq until he gets his sorry butt out of the White House and gets to go rake in some big bucks like his dad and Clinton, as he he told the author of the resently released book about him was his plan after leaving the White House.

 
At 9/08/2007 8:13 AM, Anonymous Josh Curren said...

Let's see...do I believe my government (which I agree can be a scary proposition, as these are the people that brought us Vietnam, Travelgate, Watergate, and many other jokes), or do I want to side with Bin Laden?

Well, I do not trust my government, Republican or Democrat (they are close to the same in this department), but I certainly know that I do not want to be on the same side as Bin Laden.

The problem with you liberals is that,

1. You can not understand that your precious Dem leaders are as bad as any Republican, and

2. You hate Bush so much (for winning in 2000), that you'd side with ANYONE before him (even Bin Laden).

You peopple need to wake up, kick in the brain cells and think rationally - you think only out of hatred for Bush.

 
At 9/08/2007 5:15 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Josh,

"You people" (again, thank Rove and the idiots who bought his crap for causing such division in the country) need to sharpen up your mental reasoning skills.

If you're so ignorant that you think the only choices a citizen has is either has to A. Believe everything their lying leaders tell them, or B. Run to support bin Laden, then, as I already knew, you're a fool.

Knock of the ridiculous false choices and get serious.

 
At 9/09/2007 8:01 AM, Anonymous Josh Curren said...

I am sorry, are you not on the same side of the Iraq debate as Bin Laden?

There are 2-sides, on you are both on the same side.

I appreciate that you may be on the same side of the argument for different reasons (maybe), but there is no debate...you indeed are on the same side.

 
At 9/10/2007 11:52 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Josh, So you've talked to old Osama and are familiar with his views on Iraq? Interesting.

I'm not sure what they are.

After all, Bush's blunder is the best thing that ever happened to bin Laden. It's the gift that keeps on giving.

I'm not sure he'd like it if we withdrew. Why wouldn't he prefer to see us continue spending billions and squandering lives and blood there?

That way we can exaust our military, wreck our economy, and go down without a wimper much like the Soviet Union.

 
At 9/11/2007 6:49 AM, Anonymous Josh Curren said...

Goodness Dope - pay attention. Bin Laden released a video where he reitterated your point of the U.S. leaving Iraq.

I am quite certain that you read newspapers and watch CNN.

 
At 9/12/2007 1:53 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

My goodness gracious Josh.

Bin Laden said a lot of things. So.... according to your incredibly simplistic way of thinking, we have to do the opposite of whatever bin Laden says, whether it's in our best interests or not, eh?

I guess if he said that he sure prays to Allah that conservative Americans don't drink Drano, I'm sure you'd be running for the cupboard under your sink just to prove what a patriot you are.

Frankly, I couldn't care LESS what bin Laden says or wants or anything else. Why do you? Is he your boogie-man that haunts your dreams? Have you swallowed that kool-aid too?

The only concern I have with bin Laden is this: Why is he still breathing?

Why did your fearless leader allow him safe passage out of Afghanistan and into shelter in Pakistan?

Why then did Bush go from wanting bin Laden "dead or alive" to saying he really doesn't think about him much and it's not a concern?

Why, when we know the area he's in, do we refuse to do anything to capture or kill the person who personally ordered the attacks of 9-11?

Got any good answers to those Josh?

Why is bin Laden even around to make these damn tapes? They had all 19 hijackers identified and their trails mapped out almost within hours of the attacks. But we can't find bin Laden?

Our troops held back and allowed him to escape Afghanistan, while back in America, thousands were stranded all around the world and not a plane was allowed in the skies over the U.S. EXCEPT, some private jets which were allowed to fly around the country and pick up bin Laden family members and fly them back to Saudi Arabia.

I'd like to hear your justifications for those sorts of things Josh. You're obviously a true believer, and you apparently are able to view the world in strict black and white terms so as to not have to think too much or get all mixed up by things like facts, complexity, or nuance.

So take a shot at addressing some of my questions if you wish.

 
At 9/12/2007 7:10 AM, Anonymous Josh Curren said...

Dope,

If you want to believe that the Administration and the military are not doing anything and everything possible to kill or capture Bin Laden, then there is little that I can say to convince you.

Finding one man, who wants not to be found, in an area the size of the Middle East, with no reasonable means of tracking him - apparently is a job that no one but you can accomplish.

I don't see this as a blame-game, but if you wish to place blame, one needs to look little further than President Clinton for overlooking multiple opportunities to kill Bin Laden, because he was too busy with Monica.

Again, if it is so easy, maybe you should go get him and make yourself the national hero (that you seem to think that you are).

 
At 9/12/2007 3:59 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Josh,
You're not big on reading, are you?

Otherwise you'd know, like nearly all of Washington knows, that bin Laden was clearly "let go" and allowed to escape from Tora Bora.

Our troops were closing in and at the last moment, were called off. Local militias were then tasked with capturing bin Laden, with the predictible result that they likely did nothing but provide him an armed escort into safety across the border into Pakistan.

Bill Clinton did try to kill bin Laden, if you recall, but he was lucky enough to have moved from under the point of the rocket by the time it landed.

You're obviously a cult of Bush head case, as you insist on desperately clinging to increasingly discredited and ludicrous arguments in a failing attempt to prop up perhaps the most worst president and presidency in our history.

We're no safer, next to nothing REAL has been done to improve port security and other means and methods of civil defense.

While you and others are duped into wetting your pants over a threat that you're less likely to die from than having a meteor fall on your head, Bush is busy dismantling our very system of government and trying to assume near dicatorial powers.

And in your obedient and unthinking style, you believe every crock of dung he feeds you and will defend the indefensible, try to argue that failure is success, ignore history, fracture facts, skoff at reality, try to blame every Bush failure on a presidency that ended over 6 years ago, and repeat blatant lies and distortions about anyone who so much as questions Dear Leader.

Sad really.

By the time you snap out of it, the entire world will have left you behind.

 
At 9/13/2007 12:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Josh Curren that Dope is unable to consider any opinion other than his own. What Josh understands, and the Dope doesn't, is that surrender is not an option. America must not cut and run!

As your idol Nevill Chamberline learned the hard way, one cannot appease your way to victory!

 
At 9/13/2007 8:23 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 12:20.

I most certainly do consider views that are contrary to mine. And when I find them idiotic, baseless, or pure fantasy, I say so and explain why. Sorry you seem to have a problem with that.

Secondly, perhaps you could explain to us all why Bush is now "cutting and running" in Iraq?

How is that different, other than it's sold as some sort of sign of success?

 
At 9/14/2007 11:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil Hare wants to "cut and run" in Iraq, not President George W. Bush. I believe our elected President knows more about the "War on Terror" than our selected, not elected congressman! I am glad that America is making progress. As you know the surge worked, we are not "cutting and running," we are achieving our objective.

 
At 9/14/2007 6:20 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAHAAAAAAHAAAAAAHAAAAAAAAAA.....


Oh lord, I think I busted a stich.

No doubt about it, the most hilarious comment of the year.

 

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