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“Mr. Speaker, Mr. Cheney, members of Congress, fellow Americans…”
Live Update! 9:22pm
Live Update! 9:31pm
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Live Update! 10:02pm
Just remember: when these folks get in front of the camera they just lie. Politicians’ aims are political victory, not truth, and not justice. Hanging on the words and dickering about this or that point and fuming about this or that plain non sequitur will be talking past them entirely. You may as well spend the same amount of time cleaning your house, or sorting old photographs, or sucking on lemons.
Pointing out some piece of plain nonsense may have some value in provoking other people–the so-called rank and file, i.e., you and me–to think for a moment; and it may be worthwhile to use it to call on those other people to discourse that moves a bit beyond the braying of talking-points. But lingering on the endless talk of politicials or the professional political windbags inside the Beltway, as if these folks care what we think, or about what is true, is like trying to beat a street hustler at his three-card monty. It’s a scam. Just walk away.
George W. Bush, speech in Cincinatti, Ohio, 7 October 2002:
After eleven years during which we have tried containment,
sanctions, inspections, even selected military action, the end
result is that Saddam Hussein still has chemical and biological
weapons and is increasing his capabilities to make more. And he is
moving ever closer to developing a nuclear weapon.
The hunt for biological, chemical and nuclear weapons in Iraq has
come to an end nearly two years after President Bush ordered U.S.
troops to disarm Saddam Hussein. The top CIA weapons hunter is
home, and analysts are back at Langley.
Duelfer is back in Washington, finishing some addenda to his
September report before it is reprinted.
There’s no particular news in them, just some odds and ends,
the intelligence official said. The Government Printing Office will
publish it in book form, the official said.
The CIA declined to authorize any official involved in the weapons > search to speak on the record for this story. The intelligence
official offered an authoritative account of the status of the hunt
on the condition of anonymity. The agency did confirm that Duelfer
is wrapping up his work and will not be replaced in Baghdad.
… But the President is going to
continue working closely with our friends and allies to confront
the threats that we face —
How can he do it again —
— and we continue to take steps to
improve our intelligence. That’s what the President is going to do.
We have very good relationships with countries across the world
because of the President’s efforts over the last few years. He’s
worked to build strong relationships with our friends and allies,
and worked to make sure that we’re confronting the threats that we
face. It’s important that we act together to confront the threats
that we face. And it’s important that when we say something, that
we follow through on what we say. That’s why the President is
Even if the information is wrong?
— that’s why the President is also
working to strengthen the United Nations and make it more
effective. That’s something that we’re working on, as well, because
it was very clear what the international community expected of
Saddam Hussein, and he continued to defy the international
community. It was a very unique threat that we faced in terms of
Iraq. And in a post-September 11th world, it was a threat you could
One of the favorite satirical devices of Karl Kraus, an acerbic critic writing in the last days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was to simply print verbatim quotes from prominent Viennese figures, without any additional commentary. Sadly, the tactic has only become more necessary since the end of the Great War–particularly within the discursive world of televised debate.
While inspectors in Iraq continue searching for weapons of mass destruction, some Americans are outraged at the president that so far no weapons of mass destruction have been found. Our next guest thinks that’s grounds for impeachment.
We’re joined by the publisher of Harper’s magazine, John MacArthur, who’s with us. And the author of the best selling book, Treason, Ann Coulter is with us.
It’s not even really intellectually worth discussing. After reading your article, my first reaction is to bubble and fizz and get mad. My second reaction is this is beyond silly, you know, but you really believe this?
Why do you invite me to go on the show if you think it’s beyond discussion?
Because Alan wanted you on. That’s why.
OK. But clearly…
It wasn’t my first choice.
Clearly, if the president of the United States has lied on a grand scale to Congress…
Name me one lie. Name me one lie.
Let me finish.
If you’re going to call him a liar, back it
I will, yes. I’ll talk about what he said
to Bush…Blair at the press conference on September 7 at Camp
David. He said…he cited a non-existent report from the
International Atomic Energy Agency, saying that Saddam was six
months away from developing a nuclear weapon and infamously said,
What more evidence do we need? And from there…
We don’t have time for a speech.
… we moved on to aluminum tubes. We
moved on to connections with Al Qaeda.
Did you call…
We talked about an atomic bomb threat
that did not exist. Sean, this didn’t exist. This didn’t exist.
This isn’t a speech time.
You need me to give you the facts.
I’ve got to ask you, did you call for the
impeachment of Bill Clinton?
I wasn’t interested in the impeachment of
You weren’t interested? So you’re only
interested in the impeachment of Republicans?
No, no, no, no. I mean, it’s…Listen, I
can’t stand Bill Clinton.
Did Bill Clinton lie to the American
Why do you have one standard for him and
another standard for a Republican?
I have the same standard for both of
No, you don’t. Because you didn’t write an
article asking for his impeachment.
Actually, what I’m trying to tell you is
that if you, as Senator Graham put it a few months ago very
intelligently, if you apply the same standard to Bush that was
applied to Clinton, then it’s impeachable. He should be impeached.
Because as Alexander Hamilton said in
The Federalist Papers, this has to do with the
immediate consequences and harm done to society. What could be
greater harm than the deaths of American soldiers…
Excuse me. The immediate
consequences…Sir, you have yet to…
… in Iraq, who have been sent to Iraq
on a fraudulent pretext, utterly…
My patience is really running thin.
… and they’re dying.
Could you please be quiet, because there
are other people on the panel?
The idea here, he cannot give a specific
I did give a specific example.
He’s full of crap.
I did give an example.
And this is just, hatred of George W. Bush
now has become a sport for these guys.
all, I agree with you. I hate to treat this seriously by
responding, but the particular lie that he cited as his leading,
case in chief of the president lying, yes, Bush cited something
like the Atomic Energy Commission. He misspoke.
It was the International Institute for
Strategic Studies or something. He misspoke about the name of the
No, he didn’t. He didn’t.
It’s my turn now. You stop that.
Point two, as you know, I’m something of an
authority on the grounds for impeachment. And this is precisely the
sort of thing that impeachment is not for. I mean, it’s not for
policy disagreements. It’s certainly not for something that is in
the president’s prerogative, such as waging war, for example.
To take a decision that I think is appalling, but is not grounds
for impeachment. Bill Clinton sending a small Cuban boy back to a
Bolshevik monster in Cuba. That is not grounds for impeachment,
because that is part of the president’s authority.
You don’t impeach for disagreements over
policy. It is for misbehavior; that is what misdemeanor means. It’s
for bad decorum.
Ann, we didn’t let Rick make a speech. You
can’t make a speech, either.
Well, actually, you did.
I know it’s hard, but if you look to your
left, I know that’s difficult.
Look, I don’t think he should be impeached. I disagree with Rick
That’s very big of you.
Thank you. I think I’d rather put our time
and effort toward 2004, and just like I don’t think Bill Clinton
should have been impeached, I don’t.
But I understand Rick’s point. There are many Americans who
increasingly seem to feel that we were not leveled with, for
whatever reason, whether it was Bush who did it or people in his
administration who gave him false information.
He did say the IAEA reported that Iraq was six months away from a
nuclear capability, which turned out not to be true. It’s a scare
He got the name of the institute wrong.
Saying I misspoke, and they said they
misspoke about a number of things. Misspoke about uranium. They
misspoke about tubes, misspoke about how many things.
Misspoke lets him off the hook?
No. Liberals don’t want to fight terrorism.
You want there to be lots of 9/11’s.
The Bush administration has apparently become so convinced of its divine right to bomb the world that they don’t even give a damn anymore about keeping up appearances out of a decent respect for the opinions of mankind. They urged the U.N. to take responsibility for the situation in Iraq, and then days later the Bush-Rumsfeld junta demands carte blanche from Congress for unilateral aggression. They demanded Iraq let weapons inspectors back in, and now that Iraq has spoiled their war plans by acquiescing, the junta says they’ll do what they can to keep the inspectors out!
The War Party toadies in Congress are trying to work out just how to get President Bush’s war resolution through, in spite of reservations by some Right-wing Republicans and growing division amongst Democrats. Take some time today to write or fax a polite but firm letter to your Representative and your Senators urging them not to approve any resolution authorizing force against Iraq. Then send a copy of your letter to the editor of your local newspaper. You may want to use MoveOn’s No War on Iraq letter as a template, but be sure to put your own pen to paper. The situation at this point requires more than just petition drives.