TPM points out the irony
in the first paragraph, quoted
below, so i’ll leave you to
read that for yourself. . .
i note that the second paragraph,
omitted from TPM’s discussion, is
equally — if not surpassingly — illu-
minating. [you may read the entire, largely
pungent, opinion at the opinion journal.]
the problem, we are told, is a
simple lack of loyalty. a lack
of loyalty to those who would lie
us into yet another quagmire/war, i
gather. so what we need here is more
loyalty to our
so asserts the punditry of the
wall street journal opinion page:
. . .We reported earlier this week that the authors of this Iran NIE include former State Department officials who have a history of hostility to Mr. Bush’s foreign policy. But the ultimate responsibility for this fiasco lies with Mr. Bush. Too often he has appointed, or tolerated, officials who oppose his agenda, and failed to discipline them even when they have worked against his policies. Instead of being candid this week about the problems with the NIE, Mr. Bush and his National Security Adviser, Stephen Hadley, tried to spin it as a victory for their policy. They simply weren’t believable.
It’s a sign of the Bush Administration’s flagging authority that even many of its natural allies wondered this week if the NIE was really an attempt to back down from its own Iran policy. We only wish it were that competent.
well, at least as to that last
bolded bit, above, we agree.
but again, let me point out the
fundamental flaw in the journal’s
line of reasoning — it assumes that
loyalty is the surpassing virtue re-
quired of all government agencies — to
the president. or should i say “king”.
no, our system contemplates that all parts
of the executive branch will act first to
tell the truth, and second, to be loyal to
the president. these two goals ordinarily
will not conflict, for in other administrations,
the truth is accepted by the executive. not
so here. only nixon (watergate), and reagan
(iran-contra) come to mind, as recent examples
of the tension between truth-telling and law-
less executive branch conduct.
so — it is more than irony — it is a sad
mistatement of our founding principles — that
animates the journal’s saturday opinion.
now, as to that last bit — i agree. i too
only wish messrs. cheney and bush were clever
enough to be subtly distancing themselves from
their badly flawed iran analysis — but as mr.
cheney’s friday speech made clear — he, at least,
will continue to claim that iran is presently
enriching uranium — for military gain.
and that, per the NIE, is false.
it is simply a lie.
hopefully now, though, fewer will believe him.