Saturday, November 26, 2005

The Confession of George W. Bush

I, George W. Bush, am sorely burdened by the weight of my offenses against the people and Constitution of the United States. Therefore I am compelled to confess as follows.

1. I have put my expected gain ahead of the well-being of the people of the United States. In seeking to maximize my wealth and the wealth of my family and close friends, I have ordered our military to invade Iraq. My objective was to grab half the Iraqi oil - worth $50 billion per year, and rising.

2. In implementing my attempt to grab Iraq’s oil, I have caused the deaths of more than 2000 Americans and uncounted tens of thousands of Iraqis. I have also caused the maiming of thousands of Americans and Iraqis. I have also wasted hundreds of billions of dollars of US Treasury funds in fighting the war in Iraq.

3. I have lied, grossly and repeatedly. I have stated a series of outrageous lies to justify the invasion and occupation of Iraq. I never admitted the true reason for the invasion, which was to steal half of Iraq’s oil for my personal gain and the gain of my family and close friends.

4. My biggest and most vicious lie is the lie that gained the widest acceptance among the American people: the lie that fighting in Iraq was keeping the terrorists from striking us at home, in the US. The repeated telling of that lie by myself and my fellow politicians and supporters in the media enabled me to get reelected in 2004.

Extenuating Circumstances

I take responsibility for my actions. I offer the following extenuating circumstances.

a) In stealing half of the Iraqi oil, I would be stealing it from Saddam Hussein, an evil man. It’s ok if the oil passes from Saddam Hussein to me.

b) I have had many helpers in gaining acceptance for my lies. The media repeated my lies with no criticism. The Democratic party did not challenge me. Many voters accepted my lies even though a few minutes of thought would have exposed the lies for what they were. Examples follow.

The fact that I presented a series of reasons for the war in Iraq (offense #3, above) shows that I am more interested in fighting the war than in having a credible stated reason for doing so. That should tell my audience that I have a hidden reason. In such a case, the conventional wisdom says: “Follow the money.” Doing that leads to offenses #1 and #2 above.

The biggest lie (#4, above) is transparently a lie. The war in Iraq does not protect the US from terrorists. It obviously does not protect us from domestic terrorists, such as Tim McVeigh, the Oklahoma City killer of more than 150 Americans or Eric Rudolph the convicted 1996 Olympic bomber, who also conducted three other bombings, killing two and injuring over 100 others. The Iraq war also does not protect us from 9/11 type terrorists, who are radically different from Iraqi insurgents: they speak English fluently and have lived in the US or Western Europe long enough to blend in. They would not go to Iraq if they were going to attack the US. Detouring to Iraq would expose them needlessly to being killed or captured.

I should not have lied. On the other hand, plenty of people could have challenged my lies. They chose not to. None of the voters were obligated to believe my obvious lies. Yet they chose to believe them.


At 12:03 PM, Blogger James Robertson said...

Let's try taking these one at a time.

Point One - it's clear you disagree with the war. However, you don't get your own set of facts. Who is being enriched? Please show some actual evidence instead of argument by assertion

Point Two: This one is laughable. If that's the case, it's very odd that our prices fluctuated so much after Katrina. If we were actually stealing the oil, not making use of it would be a politically stupid move. Not to mention that doing a deal with Hussein - in exchange for removal of troops from the area - would have been cheaper and more reliable. Again, evidence, please. As to troop losses - please study some history. If you think 2000 is an egregious number, you have a lot of reading ahead of you.

Point Three: Lied? Where? If anything, Bush is more honest than most Presidents - he actually does what he says he'll do, which drives his opponents nuts. If he lied about the reasons for going in, you'll need evidence. Not to mention the guilt you'll need to assign to most of the Congress, Democrat and Republican

Point Four: Please name a terrorist strike in the US since 9/11 - that would prove your point. What, you mean there hasn't been one? Then what, exactly, was your point?

At least it's clkear who Dave Winer learned his arrogance and "argument by assertion" ways from. This post cleared that much up.

At 12:20 PM, Anonymous Patrick said...

Re: James Robertson

Point One - You might try Haliburton, with whom Cheney and the Administration enjoy an innappropriately close relationship. Haliburton has been unquestionably enriched by the war, being the beneficiary of no bid contracts.

Point Two - The prices may have fluctuated for the same reason that the oil industry is enjoying record prices. In other words, the prices may not have reflected true market values, but were the result of manipulation. Also, the only thing we could have bargained with Hussein with was the removal of sanctions, which would probably have had political backlash as the opposition party doubtless would have screamed about sacrificing morality and dealing with the devil for a little profit. Much simpler to dress up a phony war as a patriotic exercise and take what's needed. Remember, too, that the Administration did not expect the quagmire that resulted. They foolishly believed that in a matter of a few days, the Iraqi resistance would crumble and the public would welcome American troops with flowers. So at the time, it probably seemed the safest, easiest course. Unfortunately, as has been proven before, the Administration is stupid.

Point Three - Well, there's a good list here. The WMD issue sticks out like a sore thumb for one. Even if you believe the Administration didn't create intelligence to back up their argument, or pressure analysts into saying what they wanted said, it is pretty convenient that after the WMD issue failed, the Administration didn't even falter before reinventing history to state that the real reason we invaded was to fight the terrorists. WMD? What? No, no, it's Zarquawi we've been after since the beginning, never mind the fact that Zarquawi was a no name entity until we gave him and hundreds like him a rallying point and an opponent to fight against.

Point Four - This is a flawed argument, that assumes the US used to suffer terrorist attacks on a normal basis. We haven't, that's one of the reasons that 9/11 was such a powerful blow to our pysche. Before 9/11, the only foreign terrorist attack I can remember offhand was the World Trade Center bombings, back sometime in the early 90's. '93 if I remember right. So you have about an eight year gap between attacks here, which means we're not due again for a little bit. Claiming that the war in Iraq has averted terrorist attacks is a foolish and impossible to prove claim. What can be asserted, however, is that more Americans have died due to terrorist style attacks since the war began. Instead of keeping our armed forces out of harm's way and keeping our borders secure, we're instead giving terrorists in Iraq an all you can eat buffet of potential targets.

At 12:53 PM, Blogger James Robertson said...

Halliburton as a crutch. Which companies are large enough to do the kind of jobs we have them doing in Iraq? Answer that, and you'll understand why they are there. Or you can cling to the tinfoil.

Your second point requires a vast conspiracy, and that invalidates it all by itself. Occam's Razor; there's a simpler answer. Sure, we only cared about instability in Iraq (and the region) because of the oil (which could otherwise be used to fun terror). That doesn't mean that we are stealing it. Evidence, please.

The WMD canard. First, every intelligence agency on the planet - and the Clinton administration (and Democrats, before Bush's election) believed that WMD were there. heck, the Administration (unlike, say, Jay Rockefeller) never called Iraq an imminent threat. What they said was that - post 9/11 - we could ill afford waiting for them to become one. You could argue against the war on the basis that the "precautionary principle" is a thin reed, but I haven't seen many anti-war people do that. Maybe because they believe in that when it comes to global warming, so it would be awkward.

Not to mention that - war aims change once a war starts. This was true of the Revolution (circa 1775, few saw independence as a goal), the Civil War (Lincoln had no intention to free the slaves) - etc, etc. Once a path is chosen, aims tend to change. Just like business plans

You forget the attacks on our embassies - which are American soil) in Africa. You also forget the USS Cole. You also forget the Millenium plot, barely averted because a border agent got lucky. None of that since then. What we've done is carried the fight overseas. I'm happier having our trained military fight jihadists in Iraq than have us try to play non-stop defense at home. Maybe you like the nickel defense though - it always works so well at shutting down an adventurous offense.

At 2:22 PM, Blogger librespondent said...


The key word is "expected."

Re-think your position in view of the fact that Bush and Co. did not realize their expectations. They bungled the job.

At 4:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you give GWB way, too much credit. Here is a review of sorts for the book Neo-Conned. I recommend it!

At 4:45 PM, Anonymous Patrick said...

First, in regards to Halliburton, the basic assumption that because of their size, they are imminently suited to rebuilding Iraq is flawed. First, assuming Halliburton is the only company with the size to handle the various problems, why not simply break down the tasks, and bid them out to get a competitive price and delivery of services? In other words, why not involve a dozen smaller companies if you can't find an alternative bigger company to do the job? Why let one single giant handle everything, without introducing any aspect of capitalistic competition that would help ensure quality delivery of products and services at a competitive rate?

The second point does not necessarily allude to some vast, shadowy conspiracy. The price of oil being psychological is a very real possibility. If you have someone screaming, over and again that Katrina might have fatally disabled our oil infrastructure, prices will increase, whether or not that is the case. Economics does not always reflect the reality on the ground. Also keep in mind that Katrina's major effect wasn't to the source of oil, but rather to refineries. We couldn't process the oil we had.

Also remember that Iraq is much less stable than was predicted. Just because we haven't seen it pouring in yet, doesn't mean it won't.

Your last paragraph is thin sophistry at best. If you are to count attacks that occur in areas that are not traditional US soil, than you also have to count the variety of attacks that have hit in Iraq as terrorist attacks, in which case the number of incidents has leapt dramatically in the past few years than in the time period before. Even disregarding the argument that occupied land has the same attachment as Embassy land to the mother country, you have to count in the variety of attacks that have taken place in the "Green Zone," as well as the number of attacks that have involved civillian contractors and employees. So that defense invalidates the original point, that the Iraq war has lessened terrorist style attacks on US forces or civillians.

And lastly, on the issue of WMDs, one thing that I never understood, is why we invaded Iraq, who might or might not have had a rudimentary nuclear program (that had yet to produce a single warhead) and left Iran completely alone, when they are much, much closer to developing their own ordinance. Or, why we do nothing to North Korea, who not only has WMD, but possibly also the means to deliver those weapons to American soil by simple expedient of rockets.

In other words, the WMD justification has always been a very thin reed to justify the war in Iraq. To most, that leaves open the possibility of darker, ulterior motives behind the invasion.

At 6:24 PM, Blogger James Robertson said...

"Re-think your position in view of the fact that Bush and Co. did not realize their expectations. They bungled the job."

Then by that logic, we bungled germany worse. Between 1945 and 1948, 3 million Germans starved to death. Oops.

"If you are to count attacks that occur in areas that are not traditional US soil"

Embassies are the soil of the country represented, period. That's not a bizare rule; it's the way things work. The USS Cole is a US warship, and the Millenium plot targeted LAX. As I said earlier, the 90's were filled with terrorism on US targets - 9/11 was simply the biggest, because we had ignored the others.

As to WMD, you might look here:

Congressional Authorization for War

Well gosh, WMD wasn't the only (or even the first) justification for the war. Try Google next time.

As to Halliburton - they aren't the only firm in Iraq. Merely one of the largest. And if Cheney recommended them, so what? When IT management moves from firm A to firm B, you'll often see the same set of software tools and services start getting used that the management is familiar with. That's not a conspiracy or plot; it's the way the world works.


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