Thursday, May 29, 2008

Remorse Fuels Confession

The press is currently making a bit of a hullabaloo about former Bush insider Scott Maclellan's new book, What Happened? Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception.
From the book:

The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
I stood at the White house briefing room podium in front of the glare of the klieg lights for the better part of two weeks and publicly exonerated two of the senior-most aides in the White House: Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

There was one problem. It was not true.

I had unknowingly passed along false information. And five of the highest ranking officials in the administration were involved in my doing so: Rove, Libby, the vice President, the President's chief of staff, and the President himself.

McClellend elaborates further, and former Bush confidant Dan Bartlett has expressed surprise and tried to cast doubt on MCClelland's book, as has other Eggplant slaves or masters, such as Karl Rove, who compared McClellan to a "left-wing blogger."

Trent Duffy worked as McClellan's deputy for more than two years, said, "Here's a man who owes his whole career to George W. Bush, and here he's stabbing him in the back and no one knows why. He appears to be dancing on his political grave for cash."

Wrong. He is dancing on his political grave for the salvation of his soul as a human being. He is not the first nor will he be the last. In Wiser in Battle, published earlier this month, retired Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez accuses Bush and his top advisers of "gross incompetence and dereliction of duty" for their handling of the Iraq war. Sanchez also details the cynical use of the Iraq War for political gain in Washington.

Both books, written far later and more with the turning tide than Richard Clarke's courageous 2004 Against All Enemies that shows the woeful bungling from the word go, demonstrate the need of those ranging from the technically involved, like Clarke, to the innermost co-complicitors, caught up in the maelstrom just like those caught up during Nazi Germany and Holocaust, to come clean, to purge themselves of the guilt they feel, or at least the shame and the need to take responsibility for the part they played in the atrocities committed by the most malignant and incompetent administration in US history.

We also have David Kuo's take on the manipulation of the religious for political gain without the slightest authentic commitment to the principles they are supposed to support and represent.

As history ruthlessly turns up the light on a brutal regime that never stopped campaigning and never started governing, we will see common themes that involve the politicization of everything from the justice department to scientific research to federal assistance programs and even the manipulation of the media itself.

Add McClelland's book to a list that will grow of revelations as an increasing number of the guilty find it necessary to acknowledge their roles in the disaster.


Blogger The Navigator said...

I think after Bush leaves office there will be more of these. The truth will come out.

5/29/2008 3:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This shows the moral decline of the Republican party. The Republicans have been reduced to a Bush cheerleader squad. All backbone and principle have been removed. It stands for nothing but lying, cheating, stealing, misleading, and distorting for a corrupt administration.

5/29/2008 5:39 PM  
Blogger Liza said...

Historians can usually get to the truth because documents are declassified, witnesses who were afraid find their voice, and the guilty seek redemption.

And, of course, there are those lucrative book deals.

McClellan got in bed with the neo-con warmongers for whatever reasons, power, status, future book deals, who knows? But once you go to the crossroads and sell your soul to the devil, he doesn't sell it back, no matter how you spin your story.

Every dime McClellan makes on this book has blood on it. He should just park his fat ass on the scrap heap with Wolfowitz and Cheney and the rest of them. His "confession" means absolutely nothing.

5/30/2008 8:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe the man is attempting to salvage his soul and is making a genuine attempt to rectify his previous transgressions.

The interview he gave on CSPAN today, combined with what all others have said about the man in the past point to a good human being who is not proud of what he became.

I don't understand (beyond greed) why he took the job for so long and is only now coming forward, but to classify a press secretary in the same heap with a vice president seems irrational (Cheney will take his selling out of America to the grave with nary a peep of remorse). The man was nothing more than a mouthpiece..his damage could have been minimized by American citizens looking past Paris Hilton and researching what their government was selling them.

I don't have anger towards the man and I don't see him as a hero. I mostly feel sadness as he will forever have to know that his cowardly nature aided corruption of a grand scale. I'm not sure that is something I could stomach.

5/30/2008 8:34 PM  
Blogger Liza said...

Interesting comment, anon.

Certainly our judicial systems are all about deciding innocence or guilt, and if guilt is decided, then the guilt must be apportioned. Because of this, and for other reasons, most of us see guilt as a matter of degree. And most of us agree that society is best served when punishment is based on the magnitude and impact of the crime or wrong that was committed.

However, we are used to thinking about murder, rape, assault, robbery, racketeering, fraud, trespassing, and so on.

What if the crime in question is the destruction of a nation of 27 million people? What if the crime is an illegal invasion and occupation that has resulted in over a million deaths, five million refugees and internally displaced persons, and an almost total destruction of the nation's economy?

Certainly there were those who wrote the blueprint (Wolfowitz), those who developed the strategy (Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc...), those who manufactured consent, and those who performed their part in the Bush administration or the Congress or the media or wherever to make sure that the neo-conservative vision of American military hegemony over land, sea, air, space and cyberspace was given the chance it deserved to succeed. After all that thinking that was done in the neo-con think tanks, shouldn't we at least try it?

The crime, anon, is just too egregious to give any of the participants the benefit of the doubt. What doubt could there possibly be, by the way? People like McClellan were insiders and they knew what was coming down and why.

If Scott McClellan were to give the blood money from his book to some reputable charity that helps the Iraqi war victims, particularly the children, then maybe I'll think differently about the truthfulness of his remorse.

I suspect, however, that Mr. McClellan will keep his blood money and find some other way to fend off these "demons" that motivated him to turn on those he had been so loyal to.

In the final analysis, I suppose there are degrees. McClellan is not Dick Cheney, to be sure. But, all of the degrees of this crime are in the stratosphere, far beyond our comprehension.

5/31/2008 10:19 AM  
Anonymous Scarlett Letter said...

It didn't take long for the truth to come out...

6/02/2008 8:46 PM  
Anonymous Concupiscence said...

Not unlike McNamara's book; "In Retrospect" Scott is effectuating a confession so as to avoid a new chapter in Dante's Inferno. "the hottest places in hell are reserved for the neutral." Scott is attempting to be Born Again, Again!

6/05/2008 1:21 AM  

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