always easy to tell when some grandiose scheme
or another has blown up in the faces of the right
wingers who promoted it in the first place. They
not only disown said scheme; they start blaming
it on Democrats.
after retired chief U.S. weapons inspector David
Kay came out and said that he no longer believed
that Iraq had stockpiles of hidden weapons of
mass destruction, a curious thing happened.
Usenet, we have a group of refugees from Newsmax
and the GOP who live for nothing but to spin everything
they can Putsch's way. One of my readers, Mad
Cat, ingeniously named this group "The Chimp Pimps,"
and I do wish he would stop coming up with lines
like that when I'm sipping my morning coffee.
This keyboard is shot.
any event, the Chimp Pimps decided that the reason
Putsch thought there were weapons of mass destruction
in Iraq was because Bill Clinton had told him
there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,
and let's face it: if an honest, open, friendly,
neo-fascist right winger can't trust Bill Clinton,
why, then, who can he trust?
mind you, these are the very same people who have
spent the 28 months since 9/11 parrying claims
that the Putsch administration got warnings about
such an attack by saying that the reason they
didn't take the briefings on Osama bin Laden seriously
was because anyone who worked for a man who would
lie about getting a blow job was just as likely
to lie about peril to America, and so they didn't
pay any attention to the warnings from the outgoing
that's certainly reasonable.
reason we attacked Iraq, invaded Iraq, and are
occupying Iraq is because Clinton thought there
were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and
that it would be nice if we could get Saddam out
thing is, nearly everyone believed both Administrations
and their claims about weapons of mass destruction.
We believed it because we figured that on something
this important, our leaders would take the time
to make sure they knew what the hell they were
course, to that end, Clinton somehow failed to
launch a war that so far has cost over 15,000
lives, including 500 American troops, at a cost
of some 120 billion dollars. We may never know
for sure whether Clinton believed his own claims
that Saddam was a threat because he had WMDs,
but we do know that he didn't launch a foolish
and ill-advised war, alienating most of the world
and sticking the US in a horrendous quagmire.
told us Saddam had WMDs, and he looks a bit foolish
as a result.
told us Saddam had WMDs, and we've lost thousands
of lives and billions of dollars, and have our
own personal rebellious colony as a result.
it's only fair that Clinton take more blame, just
to kinda even things out. The Chimp Pimps want
us to know it's not fair that Clinton should be
a reasonable man who was mistaken, while Putsch
was a homicidal maniac who shot from the hip.
more, Iraq is all the fault of the Democrats because
they voted to authorize the war in Iraq. Especially
that MIZZUS Clinton. She voted for the war! Boo!
Hiss! Those mean old Democrats made that nice
Mr. Bush screw up!
have been a few folks on the left who claim that
the Democrats supported the authorization for
Iraq on the cynical premise that it would turn
into a major clusterfuck and do Putsch political
damage. Certainly, it took no great talent as
an oracle to realize that while a war in Iraq
would be very quick and decisive (and few people
at the time seemed to notice this contradicted
the caws about Saddam's massive military might),
the peace would be long, bloody, and unproductive.
nobody expected that no WMDs would be found. Nobody
thought the troops would do such a comprehensive
job of alienating the Iraqis who would have supported
them through stupid, clumsy and often vicious
occupation tactics. Nobody thought Saddam would
eventually be found, already a captive in a hole
in the ground, a prisoner with no power whatsoever.
the Senate couldn't have known this when they
voted Putsch a too-open-ended hand in dealing
vote had a few conditions. First, it had to have
approval from the UN. Putsch, days after swearing
he would force a vote at the Security Council
to show that France and Germany stood alone against
the proposed war, had to back down when it became
clear that this wasn't the case. This gave Congress,
that stand of noble and brave Americans, a chance
to look off in all different directions while
whistling tunelessly. It also said that force
should be the last resort if all other options
failed. Putsch spent at least ten minutes exploring
those other options.
it was the Democrats' fault Just Because. For
ten months, Usenet, on a near-weekly basis, would
erupt with a storm of messages with the headers,
"WMDs FOUND!!!!!!!!!!" This was applied to rusted
out artillery shells, anything resembling a powder,
and even equipment to make hydrogen. There was
an inverse correlation between the strength of
the claim and the number of exclamation points
following the claim, with the result that Usenet
had enough exclamation points scattered around
to cover a million fistfights between Batman and
the Riddler. The Chimp Pimps who posted such messages,
week after week, month after month, bitterly blamed
liberals and Democrats for this since, after all,
if we weren't standing around looking unconvinced,
they wouldn't have had to post such messages!
this point, there's about as much chance that
anyone will find weapons of mass destruction in
Iraq as there is that OJ will find Nicole's real
finally, the chorus of claims that WMDs have been/will
be/should be found in Iraq have dwindled down
to the isolated rants from the real nutcases on
Usenet, the ones who believe that the moon landing
was faked, Hillary killed Vince Foster, and George
W. is honest and competent.
doubts there were any such weapons in Iraq after
1992. Powell, still cute in his pink hotpants,
admits that the case for WMDs looks a little uncertain
now. A pity he didn't think to mention that during
his little session in front of the UN last February
when he had "twenty-four eight by ten glossies
with circles and arrows and text on the back explaining
what each one was."
think: a few years ago, he was seen as being likely
to be America's first black President. Now people
will remember him for pointing to a building that
had a generator and no running water and claiming,
with his bare face hanging right out, that it
was a sophisticated chemical weapons lab.
it's the Democrats' fault. They made the Republicans
week: How tax cuts are a failed liberal policy.
(CBO says we can expect 2.4 trillion in new debt
over the next decade, so we may not have to wait
a week to start hearing that one!)
In my previous essay, "Newspeak",
I very stupidly refused to listen to my inner
instincts, and attributed the term "newspeak"
to Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World", instead
of George Orwell's "1984." I even had it written
correctly the first time, referring to 1984 as
"dated only by its title" and then I wienied out.
really embarrassing is that I must have read both
books a half dozen times as a teenager, and if
that was quite a few years ago, it's still no
excuse. My thanks to the folks who pointed out
the error for not making a few pithy observations
on my intelligence and memory.
Posted: January 27, 2004